I’ve lived on this planet for 28 years, without one friend to show for it. I’d have better luck on Mars: excavating rocks with the Rover, gossiping about their composition over brunch.
“Don’t bother with shale. It has a reputation for being flakey,” I’d gab, sipping a Mimosa in low gravity.
The Rover would squeak back a “hell ya!”, and give me a high five with its little robotic arm.
Did you hear NASA recently discovered seven Earth-like planets? Imagine if one planet was inhabited entirely and exclusively by cats! Wow, give me some rosé and that’d be heaven.
But, wait— what would the cats eat? Dammit, I’d guess there’d have to be a food chain in place. Now, we’re adding a bunch of species into my cat planet fantasy. Mice, cheese, cheese-makers, cheese factory builders, hot dog vendors, etc. I mean, I like hot dogs and cheese— and cheesy hot dogs!!—but quite frankly, I was a lot happier living on a planet of cannibalistic cats!!
I’m sure I could make friends on Earth with inanimate objects if I tried hard enough; maybe if I fed my Vitamix some spinach, or resuscitated my Kindle with a charge.
OK, I admit I’m exaggerating. I actually have the best fur friend EVER, right here on Planet Earth. Her name is Onion, and she’s a fluffy white Persian. She kind of looks like a mouldy onion, hence her namesake, but don’t tell her I wrote that! Thank goodness, she can’t read or I’d be down to a friend count of zero again.
If Onion hadn’t screwed up her callback, we’d be surrounded by adoring fans! (P.S. fans are better than friends, anyhow.) I’d be flesh with fortune from all the endorsement deals. Cat Wine. Cat Toilet Training Seats. Kitty Litter. Ironically, the casting producer felt Onion wasn’t catty enough for reality television— there goes my dreams of ever owning an in-house masseuse. (What? Onion gets pets all the time. It’s about time we paid for some fingers to tickle my spine.)
I shouldn’t be so hard on Onion. Read above: she’s my only friend. And, to be fair, she’s never been on a set before. Even I was awkward on my first reality television show appearance (that’s what happens when you wear Spanx under stressful circumstances!).
I tried to prepare her. On a nightly basis, I’d set up an obstacle course in my apartment’s living room by first dragging all my furniture out of the way, then piling up pillows and flipping over chairs. I’d lure her with feathers, Whiskas snacks, and laser pointers. She’d agilely fly through the maze like an angel.
A star was born.
But in front of the cameras, it was a different story. She froze. My feisty Persian Warrior Princess was no more athletic than a Furby. I pictured Ivan, the Swedish masseuse of my dreams, packing up his massage table and slamming the door in my face.
Eaflkjalkglgpoesewpofvsb— excuse me, Onion just walked across my keyboard.
After our respective reality television failures— Donald Trump would think we’re such losers— Onion and I hit rock bottom. Broke and jobless, we soon found ourselves fleeing glamorous Vancouver for the comparatively provincial Okanagan Valley, where we holed up in an empty apartment but for a sole, velvet reading chair and twin bed. We slummed to buying grocery-store quality kitty litter.
Who’d want to be a reality television star anyhow, really? They either end up in prison (see: Abby Lee Miller; see also: Teresa Giudice) or ruining their marriages (see: Jon & Kate; see also: Jessica Simpson & Nick Lachey; for further reference see: Yolanda Hadid & David Foster).
Onion shreds the velvet reading chair with her idle claws. I stare in bathroom mirror, obsessing over the winkles forming on my face. They say, loneliness can be as harmful as smoking 15 cigarettes a day! No wonder I’m prematurely ageing. According to my life plan, at this juncture, I was to have so much money I could afford Botox, discreet rhinoplasty, and regular dental care. Instead, there’s a stain on my front tooth and my molar is aching.
How will I ever become a star now?
In another universe, I’d be Erika Jayne, pimping my “I don’t give a f#@k” attitude in salacious music videos paid for by my Erin Brockovich lawyer husband. In this reality, however, I’m still so unknown that I can behave badly in a restaurant without anyone recording the incident on their iPhone. No one cares that my burrito came with cilantro, even though I requested it without. No one cares this food vendor is treating me like some pleb!
Oh, how mistaken you all are. Wait, and you shall soon see my name in lights. Apart from beauty, I also have brains, and I’m about to reveal my latest invention: an internet-connected cat cardigan! This smart sweater monitors the bio-metrics of your fur friend, detecting if he or she is stressed, sleeping, simmered down, or satisfied. Best of all: your cat’s conditions are reported live to a mobile application; so you can check in on your little feline, even when you are jet-setting, modelling, or yelling at a manager about the cilantro in your burrito!
There are bigger and better things in store for Onion and I. Silicon Valley. Elon Musk. Billion dollar valuations.
Who needs fans when you have venture capitalists? Who needs friends when you’re gearing up for your initial public offering?
I sip my coffee, paid for by coins scrounged out of the velvet chair. I write a poem on a napkin:
I was perfect for reality T.V., but tech life will do.
It’s hard to make friends when everyone’s jealous of you.