***BIO*** Michael Frissore lives in Leominster, MA with his wife. His work has appeared in Nuvein Magazine, Black-Listed Magazine, Barfing Frog Press and The WRIToracle, where he is a staff writer and writes a quarterly column. He was also featured as The WRIToracle’s Writer of the Month in the January/February 2006 issue.
© 2006 zygoteinmycoffee Ink.
Cat Touch Nazi
by Michael Frissore
I stared at Andie as we sat on the sofa, each of us writing: she with her poetry, me with my fan letter to The Rock. I peered heavily into her blue eyes, the creepy way that's freaked her out ever since we watched The Ring.

She ignored me. I began staring at her nose as it sat there, all cute and pointy, the perfect spoon hanging nose. I tried to resist, but had to touch it at that moment, reaching out hesitantly.

"Boop," I said, in the goofy, high-pitched voice I use with her, touching her glorious sniffer.

"Stop it," she said. "What are you doing?"

"What?" I replied. "I'm merely touching your beak lovingly."

"You were just petting the cat," she said. "And you didn't wash your hands. You know I'm allergic to him."

"Her," I said.

"Whatever, dick," my little sweetheart said. "Now I have to go wash my face and take two allergy pills."

"Why didn't you take the pills before?" I asked, believing I was making a valid point.

"Because I can't be all hopped up on pills every time I come to your place."

This is my eternal dilemma. My darling Cat Touch Nazi won't even let me near her unless I wash my hands like a fiend or keep Cinder in lockdown. Cinder has never been the type of cat that just pisses off for hours until she wants to be fed. She likes constant attention and is always close by. Perhaps Andie takes issue with this.

“Babe,” I hollered. “You’re not jealous of Cinder, are you?”

“Are you serious?” she said, coming out of the bathroom. “You think I’m jealous of a cat?”

“It could be mental is all I’m saying.”

“No, you could be mental,” Andie said. “And I could end up sick or dead or with monkey pox or something.”

“See, you’re being melodramatic,” I said. “You can’t get monkey pox from a house cat, or any type of cat.”

“How difficult is it to put Cinder in a room somewhere for a while or remember to wash your hands before you put them near my face?”

This was hardly a new argument for us. I looked at Andie, her beautiful eyes now red and itchy, and her adorable nose now sniffly and runny, and then looked over at Cinder, my furry companion of three years.

“All right, fight her,” I said.

“What?” Andie said, still sniffling.

“You and Cinder fight for my love a la Popeye and Bluto.”

“I’ve told you I’m not fighting the cat, ” she replied.

I went to her, hugged her and brushed the hair out of her eyes to try to ease the situation.

“You still haven’t washed your hands,” she said, hurrying into the bathroom again and slamming the door.

A week later Cinder was living with my parents.
Nov. 2006