I’m that smelly cat Phoebe was singing about

So, I was in Wally World on my lunch break and …

I can see in your eyes that you’re thinking, “Oh this is gonna go well.” It’s like when a story begins, “So, this one time, me and Bubba’d been drinkin’ all night and then …”

“Lemme guess, Chris: Then you went to Wal-Mart?”

However, this story is completely different because I hadn’t been drinking, I haven’t even seen Bubba since his picture ran with the story about the beef jerky heist ran in the paper, and, again, I was on my lunch break. I barely even had time to find the beef jerky.

I was looking for a combination lock because I’ve finally rejoined a gym now that I’m no longer personally worried about Covid — my fatness has a better shot at killing me than a virus (fatricide, I believe). I needed the lock to make sure no one stole anything valuable from my gym locker, such as my best broke-in underwear.

While combing the store looking for this lock, I found many things I could use. One was a deer and rabbit repellent spray. I don’t have anything against deer and rabbits, but a raccoon has been ripping up my yard looking for grubs. My wife prefers I assassinate the raccoon, which I’m OK with if she’ll let me cook him in the oven surrounded by sweet potatoes. The taters soak up the coon grease most deliciously. But because I don’t feel like staying up late enough to assassinate the raccoon, I’ve tried dissuading him by killing the grubs it eats with poison. I’ve also tried sticking my head out the window and barking in the middle of the night when I get up to pee. The only thing that effort has gotten me is yelled at by the neighbors and one awkward conversation with Animal Control.

Well, something over here is barking, Mr. Johnson!”

So, I figured if this repellent stinks too much for deer and rabbits, raccoons might not like it, either. When I picked it up to examine the label, it leaked all over me. I suspect it will repel a raccoon. It certainly repelled everyone near me in the Garden Center.

I sprinted for the area with the shampoo, lotions and deodorants. The other customers practically leaped out of the way. OK, it was Wal-Mart, so they kinda rolled out of the way. I tried the liquid soap but couldn’t get it to dispense. Ah, Axe body spray! You can’t buy it before you test the smell, right? And I tested a lot of them.

You see, I had to be at the gym in a few hours, and I have smelled some stinky folks at the gym who could have used a new scent — such as “Hey I finally used soap today,” the new scent from Dial. I didn’t want to stink like them. My fellow gym goers were intrigued by the new fragrance wafting through the sweaty air.

“What’s that smell?” this one hot lady on an elliptical machine asked with a scrunched-up look on her face that I can only describe as excruciating intrigue as I strolled confidently past her.

“Ah, you mean that hint of Phoenix Dark Temptation Apollo Anarchy Essence Ice Chill Cool Ocean Wild Bamboo?”

“No, more like something that would repel a deer or a rabbit or a human,” she said.

And that’s why I don’t like talking to my wife at the gym.

“Hmm, maybe you should sleep in the backyard tonight,” she suggested.

“You mad?”

“No, but you might’ve finally found something that’ll work. We’ll call it a win-win.”

She might be right. She says she had the best sleep of her life that night. And I didn’t see the raccoon. However, Animal Control did show up again.

“Don’t tell me somebody called about the barking again?” I asked.

No, sir. Something about a strange odor.”

“Oh, that’s just me.”

Um, headquarters, it’s just that barking guy again. Yeah, he smells, too.”

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