The Monkeypox Roundtable
“I’m kinda haunted by all the cats on Facebook,” she said.
“Oh, you mean like Laser Cats and Keyboard Cat?”
“No, just cats. They’re everywhere. It’s like that’s all people post anymore. Twice as many as dogs, I swear.”
“Maybe it’s the groups you’re part of.”
“I don’t know.”
“Or all the times you LIKED the cat pictures. Facebook sees that as an indication to send you more cats.”
“Yep, that’s how it works.”
“I just thought people were posting cats all the time.”
“Well, that too is true.” I paused a second to take in her entire vibe. Pachouli, tie-dye Keep Austin Weird shirt from the 80s. “Do you have cats?”
“Me? No, I don’t have any pets.”
“But you like cats?”
“They kinda freak me out, to tell the truth.” She took a deep breath and let out a long series of snorting exhales through her nose. “Like they’re watching us. Waiting to nibble on our eyes if we die. Or demanding to be fed at all hours of the night.”
“Sounds like cat memes.”
“Yeah, is that what they’re called? I thought it was ‘me-me-s.’”
“Yep, pretty sure it’s memes. So, monkeypox, what brings you to this meeting?”
“I’m just scared, you know. The plague and the cats and now the monkeys. It’s a bit too much, you know. Don’t you worry about it?”
“No, all of it. Like the world is coming to an ending. You know, the four horsemen and all that?”
“Are you religious?”
“No, not at all. Spiritual, not religious. Isn’t that what they say?”
It wasn’t hard to enchant her, she seemed ripe for the picking. And now, on this perfect beach in Miami, I’m pretty sure I’m in love. Her wacky theories and stories make me feel a bit stoned, but I don’t think she’s on anything. Just ja-love and a fear of the monkeypox. I assured her there were no monkeys at the beach.
Read more Short-Short Stories from John.