Tuesdays With Murray (Chapter 41)

A couple of weeks ago I decided to make a sandwich only to discover we were completely out of bread. As I cursed at Toby for finishing off the bread and not letting me know, I heated up some soup instead. Later that day I purchased two loaves of bread at our local Key Foods.

A few days later I was lying on the floor playing with Emory when I noticed something peculiar underneath the couch. At first it looked like it might be Murray’s red catnip pillow. But we got rid of that a long, long time ago. What was this mystery object under the couch?

I put the loaf of bread back where it belonged and noticed that TobyJoe had finished off the other loaf. We were down to one loaf of bread that loaf was punctured by cat teeth and paw prints.

Our apartment isn’t exactly baby friendly. We live in a railroad apartment where one room leads into another making it impossible to have any closed off area for a baby. It’s just a big open space—no definite barriers, no doors to shut, nothing. It’s a great for giving the illusion of open space, but horrible if you have a baby. It’s just not possible to close off an area in a railroad apartment.

This means that on any given day I spend the majority of my time with one eye on him and the other on the laundry, cleaning, bathing, cat feeding, Internet writing, bill paying, etc. etc. etc. It’s not easy. I’m not trying to sound like a big ol’ whiney bitch, but it’s not easy.

Some areas of the apartment are just all out dangerous, take the computer desk for example. There are more wires leading to an from that desk than one might find at Clark Griswold’s house at Christmas time. I refer to this area as the Gaza Strip.

There are, however, a few areas where I can take one eye away from him for a second. For example, the rug in the living room is really safe. It’s usually covered in toys, wooden spoons, spatulas, and plastic containers for amusement. I call this area The Green Zone.

So, yesterday I was hanging out with Emory in the Green Zone letting him play and babble. I didn’t worry too much about his getting into trouble since it’s such a safe area. But then he started to crawl away from the Green Zone. That’s when my left eye began to wander.

If you have a toddler and/or a baby who crawls, you are very aware of the moments of silence that erupt when they’re not supposed to. Perhaps your little one stops moving suddenly, all babbles come to an end. It’s at that moment you realize he or she is up to a degree of something less than positive. It doesn’t mean there’s something horribly dangerous taking place either. It’s probably more likely that you’ll interrupt your little guy stuffing a handful of cat hair into his mouth or sucking on your very filthy sock. Or maybe you discover that he’s remoistening a slice of very stale bread taken from a loaf of bread that’s been stored in an otherwise empty side table.

Why Murray is storing loaves of bread, I haven’t the slightest idea. But he’s making childproofing this apartment all the more difficult. I really am starting to believe baby and cat are in cahoots.

And our bread is now being refrigerated.


  1. Hmmm. Do you think Murray is leaving himself gigantic bread crumbs? Maybe he’s marking the way back to a special treat. Are you missing the leftover Easter ham?

    As for darling Emory, if you really want to contain him, One Step Ahead makes a play yard. You can find it online in their baby gate section. It would definitely make for a fun Murray/Emory prison yard video.


  2. That’s where I keep the dog biscuits, too. My cats aren’t hiders, though, they just take shit down and eat it right there where it falls. Once, about 10 joint boosting pills….for the 60 lb. dog. Not a pretty clean up.


  3. I didn’t even mention the hamburger buns we found under the bed. I found them while vacuuming. This cat is so super strange. That’s why we love him!

    I will check out the Play Yard, Michelle.

    Kizz, our cats do that as well. Murray is just a little more sneaky about it. I guess. Freak.


  4. Green Zone and Gaza Strip – ha! You are killing me.
    And I know completely what you mean…….


  5. you should put your bread in the microwave. it’s usually dark and dry and i’m convinced it prevents mold.


  6. Years ago, some friends of mine came over and we went out somewhere. One of them had left her purse there and when we came home, my cat Zeus had smuggled her pot from her purse and eaten a large chunk of it. He didn’t do anything crazy but we all still laugh about my drug cat to this day.


  7. This may be my favourite Murray story yet. I have a cat who is not at all interested in food. I live vicariously through your Murray stories.


  8. michele I have to agree, this is my fav story. I have to folding gates you can borrow. They are about 5-6 feet across when opened. Worked wonders at blocking our electric playgroud and sealing off a room. Let me know if you are interested.


  9. Tien: Not a bad idea. I was going to say, “But what if I turn it on with the bread in there?” (You know, because sometimes certain husbands store pizza boxes with pizza in the oven and then sometimes a certain wife turns the oven on because she never stored pizza boxes in the oven.) But that won’t and can’t happen in the microwave because you never turn it one without opening it first! So, yeah. I might give this a go. (We barely use the darned thing anyway. It was given to us by my brother when he left for China.)

    Thanks, guys, for saying you enjoyed this story. Yesterday was a helluva terrible day. It makes me feel better hearing things like that. But, I gotta tell ya, I only report the news. Murray is the one who makes it happen.

    Also, Rachel, I will gladly borrow that thing from you until your little guy is old enough. Gladly. (We are so tight on money right now given the housing situation, i can’t even fathom dropping more on anything right now.)


  10. My cat has a strange thing for stale marshmallow and little candy bits. I prefer my marshmallow type candy to be on the stale side.

    Much to my chagrin, Mary McD loves playing with a ‘stolen’ stale candy and loves playing with Good & Plenty—preferably the white ones … If I have a small box open she will get in my lap and then if I pretend not to look, she sticks her paw in opened box and swipes a few.

    To add to my data gathering….. I bought a bag of regular fluffy sized marshmallow’s. The idea was to let them get a little stale and then drop them into hot chocolate. I pulled the bag out from the pantry, make a small hole in the bag and put it back to get stale. One evening I decided to have a hot chocolate with marshmallow.

    Got the bag out, plopped it into my drink, closed the bag and went on with my business. A few weeks later, Mary McD was coming toward me and something about the size of a small white rock between her teeth.

    She dropped it a my feet (a clue to play fetch) and there it was… a full sized marshmallow…. hard as a brick. When she took it or how I don’t know.

    She doesn’t eat them—only uses them as toys.


  11. Maybe he is concerned about rising food prices and is storing up? :-)


  12. My fiance and I recently moved in together and merged our two cats. This was quite traumatic for them, but even worse, we adopted a puppy shortly thereafter. As soon as we brought the dog home, the cats started tearing through loaves of bread and eating little chunks while we were at work. It took three loaves of bread for me to put it in the fridge. The dog was thrilled when we took him to the park to feed the ducks with three loaves of stale bread. Keep the Murray stories coming—he’s so entertaining!


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