A couple days ago, shortly after the cat gobbled down some yummy beefarse pâté, she hurled all over the footstool and onto the carpet below. Catbarf is a man's job, so I spent some time cleaning up warm, smelly mush as best I could.
Not long afterwards, I hear her running and howling around strangely. She comes racing through the room where I am, ululating fiercely. She pauses near me just long enough that I notice something truly peculiar. Depending from her dainty little feline bunghole is about six inches of string with a turd acting as a pendulum bob at the bottom. She gallops away.
Taking charge of the situation, I summon up all my manly courage and tell Rebecca it's her turn. Rebecca catches up to the cat, picks her up to examine the situation more closely and deals with extracting the rest of the thread from the cat. More unusual howlings emanate from the cat until, at last, Changeling has achieved the nirvana of a yogic cleansing.
I finished House of Leaves last night. When it came out in 2000, literary types fawned over it. When I saw it in a bookshop, I leaved through its leaves and thought to myself, "Is this some kind of joke?" Recently, spurred by yet another fawning online reference, I borrowed it from jason_brez.
House of Leaves is a postmodern wetdream, full of bizarre typography, elaborate footnotes & outside-the-boxness. Unfortunately, I think most of the fawning reviewers were confused or tricked into thinking that idiosyncrasy is equivalent to genius.
In some ways, the book is a story within a story within a story within a story, as it is an professional editorial text (with added footnotes) of person A's compilation (with added notes and interpolations) of person B's papers (with added notes and interpolations) concerning person C's film. Unfortunately, of those four levels of story, 3.5 are boring.
At the deepest level, the half-interesting story is of a house that has peculiar properties that are very similar to those portrayed in the classic Twilight Zone episode (and Richard Matheson short story) "Little Girl Lost".
I confess that I skimmed through much of House of Leaves, but I have no reason to believe that a closer reading would be rewarded. I did read it closely enough to note that at least one of the ubiquitous and unlikely footnotes is an authentic reference.
My advice: watch the Twilight Zone episode.