Wednesday, July 4, 2012


(I originally wrote this with the idea in mind to make it an illustrated children's book.  In the meantime, here it is with borrowed art.)

It was at exactly three in the morning that I returned home to find that my couch had become an alligator.

My daughter ignored the matter entirely.  She went upstairs to her bed without a backwards glance.  In fact, she barely even said goodnight.

At the time, I took it to be a sign of her age.  She is, after all, only sixteen.

But over the next few days, I realized that it wasn’t just her.  Everyone in the house was pretending that it had never happened.  That there was not, in fact, an alligator in the living room.

Everyone but me.

Just the same, there was a distinct period of adjustment.

For example, we all know what cats do to furniture.

I spent hours posting “PETS LOST” pamphlets all over the neighborhood.  And the whole time I did, the rest of my family stayed at home, completely mystified.  Drinking their colas and wondering aloud, “How on Earth could all our pussy cats have ever have gotten out of the house?”

Of course, I knew what had really happened.

And I remembered, just as I am sure the alligator did, just how the cats used to treat that couch.  So I guess they kind of had it coming.

But still.

And then there was the night that my wife and I had our big argument.

Have you ever tried to get a good night’s sleep on an alligator?

It’s impossible.

But, having an alligator in the house does seem to keep all the elephants away.  And you’ll never know what a relief that is.


(The Scream was painted by Edvard Munch a long time ago; riding the alligator picture courtesy of; Groucho Marx's image was property of MGM a long time ago and might still be; the scratching cat image is courtesy of; cat vs alligator picture courtesy of; sleepless picture courtesy of; elephant tea party image courtesy of  In no way is the use of any of this art intended to infringe upon the rights of their original creators of copyright holders.  All rights reserved.)

No comments:

Post a Comment