I bought a pretend guinea pig last night.
I think its name is Skittles or Scuddles or Nibbles or some such thing. What can I say? I’m a sucker for the little critters and with the remaining balance I still had on the gift card I got at the pretend baby shower last year, Nibbles (or Wiggles) was actually free. Took the critter home to the castle and set up the cage. I have to admit to being a little disappointed. The ad seemed to indicate that little Wiggles could be held by my pretend daughter, Willow. At the very least, *I* wanted to be able to hold the little fella using some cute gesture. Nope. Poor thing just sits there, stuck to the side of my hand or motionless on the floor unless he’s in his cage. Then he scampers about and is cute as all get out. As long as Puddles (or Piddles) is happy, as happy as a pretend guinea pig can be, then I’m happy.
The real guinea pig I have isn’t much more affectionate than the pretend one, mind you. Plus I have to feed her and clear her cage. She’s the childhood pet I was never allowed to have as a child. My cousins had guinea pigs but I was never allowed. My dad never liked ‘rats’ as he called them. So, five years ago I decided to treat myself. Nona Bologna (Nona for short) makes noise, too, particularly when she hears you in the kitchen opening the veggie drawer and rustling plastic bags. It’s her subtle way of demanding her morning grape. Once this requirement it met, along with a few pieces of carrot and a handful of timothy hay, she’s quiet. Rare is the moment she deems you worthy of petting her on the head and nose, but when she does – it’s so damn cute. Nona is five-years-old now and sadly, though she still seems very healthy and active, her days are numbered. Her companion, Mina Louise, passed away last year. Nona doesn’t seem to mind being alone though. All the more grapes, carrots and hay for her.
When Nona leaves us Jim wants a dog. I’d prefer a cat. It’s one of those mixed relationships. Kinda like one person being a Republican and the other a Democrat only different and a lot less stressful. I’ll likely not get any more guinea pigs. It was fun and it fulfilled that little kid part of me that always wanted them but I’m ready to be pet-free for a while. I have Jim now instead.
JIm doesn’t squeal when I open the veggie drawer or rustle a bag, but he certainly lets me know when he needs feeding. One of these days I WILL rap his hand with a wooden spoon when he steals from the cutting board while I’m trying to cook. Either that or he’s going to get a finger chopped off. And, I can cuddle and hold him using a cute gesture. I haven’t tried just setting him on the floor to see what happens. I imagine, much like the pretend guinea pig, he’d just lay there motionless for awhile. Unlike Nona. Jim can (and usually does) clean up after himself. That’s a definite plus! Nona doesn’t cook nor does she even make the slightest effort to do the dishes.
Yeah, I think I’ll keep Jim around long after Nona Bologna goes to wherever guinea pigs go when they die. Nona never built me a pretend log cabin as a wedding gift and I’m pretty sure she has no interest in dressing up as a pirate and sinking navy ships or going to karaoke. And I know for a fact, she’ll never sit at my feet on the sofa and sing me to sleep.
In the battle of Man vs. Piggy, Man wins.