Dear Orin and Hal,
Came home to a mystery substance on the kitchen floor today. In the dark it looked like one of those lake reeds one might mistake for the blood-hungriest of leeches. But when I turned on the lights I quickly saw that it was either a) a gooey clump of mud with a wet streak or b) cat diarrhea.
I'm pretty good at applying the laws of Occam's Razor, which is why I'm not more terrified that this house is haunted and how I know that weird hip pain isn't going to require leg amputation, I just need to carry the grocery basket differently. In this case I considered: Unseasonably warm March weather, a muddy yard and no strict shoe removal policy versus, well, you, Orin. I firmly believe that if one of our cats was going to take a sloppy dump on our kitchen floor it would be Orin and that he would do so with a sly smile and a sarcastic shrug in the face of confrontation. He's just so like that.
So it was pretty much a tie. I didn't pull out my spy kit and investigate further. Why bother. Instead I just wrapped about 400 paper towels around my hand, wet the mystery meat with orange-scented 409 and scrubbed with my eyes closed. I monitored the spot to see if either of you seemed especially interested in the freshly cleaned crime scene. But, of course, you're both masters of the Poker face and revealed nothing.
You're both going through phases right now, like kids digging costumes out of a toy bin. Trying them on, shrugging them off, slipping into the next one. You're both totally over Laser Tag, and I miss tricking you with the flick of a $2 office supply. Now, in order to reclaim the bedroom, I have to toss you out like a bouncer. Hal, you sometimes disappear for hours. You've come to enjoy crawling into our storage area, turning on the overhead light and sacking out on top of the pile of microwaves. Orin, every time I leave a room I find you outside the door lying on your back, your legs splayed like you've come out of an epic breakdancing move and I just missed it.
But the biggest thing that has gone on as of late is this destructive phase, Hal. Three broken light bulbs, a permanently cockeyed lampshade and I can't leave a room without returning to find the floor wet and my water glass rolling under the table. Hal, we had to ask Google how to earthquake-proof our flat screen TV because of you. There we would be, a belly laugh deep into the new MTV comedy "I Just Want My Pants Back" and your weird little face would pop up behind the TV. It would only be a matter of time before you attempted a Phillipe Petit and sent it crashing to the floor. Now, $8 later, the TV is strapped to the TV stand which makes it a little easier to consider going to bed at night, but not much.
Let's end this on a positive note, though, shall we guys? Nice job with herding the flies that got into the house. You've both proven that you would prefer to break your own neck than let an insect light on any surface of your home. Seemingly related, you are both mad for Herbie Hancock.
Hiding the valuables,