Oh Mon Dieu!


             This little darling just won me a week of domestic servitude –  thanks buddy!

Late last night Adam and I made a bet about whether hyenas were canine or feline in origin.

I have been struggling for ten minutes to come up with the reason why our conversation touched on hyenas in the first place and I’m coming up blank, I have no idea. Sub Saharan scavenging animals don’t regularly make an appearance in our nightly pillow talk so it’s somewhat of a mystery.

Nonetheless, for whatever reason, the topic of hyenas surfaced and I said something about them being cats. Adam immediately started laughing in that vainglorious, pompous way you do when you KNOW that you are about to profit in a big way off of your spouses misguided idiocy. 

“Hyenas are NOT cats” he crowed.

“Oh my god Adam” I retorted, matching his know-it-all arrogance with a healthy dose of hubris, “Hyenas are definitely cats. Everyone knows that!”

And then the fateful words were uttered, “Wanna bet?”

BOOM. Gauntlet. Thrown.

The next five minutes were a flurry of heated negotiations, contracts, contingency plans and vetoes. We finally settled on the stakes and shook hands. Then we raced to the all-knowing oracle that is Wikipedia.

We found the entry for Hyenas and as we hurriedly scanned the information we saw a classification chart, you know the one you had to memorize using a ridiculous mnemonic back in Biology 10? Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, etc?

We eagerly started reading the biological classification and as we skimmed the unfamiliar Latin words, all around us seemed to disappear. Words leapt off the screen in slow motion. The world slowed…

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

So far we knew that the hyena was an animal and also, incidentally, a Chordata, which I can only assume means it’s capable of producing music.  Good to know in case I ever want to start a hyena band.

Nothing conclusive yet, we scanned on, each fighting to control the iPhone like a couple of sticky, bossy three year olds.

The entry continued:

Class: Mammalia

Order: Carnivora

Suborder: Feliforma


“FELIFORMA!! Feline! CAT!” I screamed joyously, brandishing the entry in Adam’s face. What transpired next might have something to do with why he’s still not speaking to me.

Before I let you see a side of me I’d rather forget existed, do you remember a little show called Friends? It ran for a few seasons back in the day, you may have heard of it. Now in this show there was a character named Monica. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been called a Monica I would have , like, probably eight or nine dollars at least. 

The comparison always made me sad because everyone knows that Monica was the worst of the three – being named the Monica was like being Miranda from SATC. THE WORST.

Pheobe had that crazy boho hippie thing going for her and Rachel had the best tits, Monica was just the annoyingly shrill one who once dated that dude with the awesome mustache. 

Anyway, Monica was both crazily borderline OCD and intensely competitive during board games. Despite hating the comparison, I have to admit that saying that I share these traits does not even begin to scratch the surface.

To this day I have been forbidden to play Cranium because of my overzealous competitive streak. But come on! I don’t have much, I’m completely physically inept, I can’t even catch keys thrown to me from two feet away, I have accidentally hit myself in the face with my OWN HAND more than once, I once asked where the sun goes when it’s cloudy out and I have the math skills of a fourth grader (wait, do fourth graders know long division? Maybe a third grader). Let me have the board games – it’s all I’ve got!

Anyway. When I realized I had won the best, I lost it. Just a little.

Okay a lot.

“IN YOUR FAAAAAACE!” I cackled maniacally, leaping out of bed. I hoisted the iPhone above my head like a trophy, and triumphantly exclaimed “In YOUR FACE LOOOOSSER! I OWN you! I OWWWNNNN YOU!”

And as if that weren’t enough, as Adam looked on in horror and disgust I then did what can only be described as a victory dance, a whirling dervish of a display complete with pelvic thrusts and accompanying “Unst unst unst” sound effects.

Now, looking back, I can say that this dance probably went on a little longer than necessary.

I also probably didn’t need to throw two pillows at Adam and keep laughing hysterically while reiterating how stupid he was.

Also, it probably goes without saying that the chuckling and eager rubbing of hands and repetitions of “Oh man! Oh MAN!” were probably a bit over the top.

And, finally, yes, I suppose it was in poor taste to actually purchase a hyena from a black market eBay site specializing in exotic mammals of the feliforma variety,  name it Mittens and then ask for Adam’s help in picking out a litterbox and catnip “Because it’s a CAT! Hyenas are CATS, fool!”.

That was probably too much. I’m mature enough to admit that.

So in the end my win was sort of a loss, in that Adam stormed off in a huff (Right in the middle of my dance! I wasn’t even done! I still had the finishing pose to do in which I snarled provocatively like a Hyena and then started purring like a CAT).

He hasn’t spoken to me since.

This morning when I woke up my first thought was of my crowning victory the night before. Despite my tasteless display and Adam’s ensuing reaction, I still got a thrill of excitement when I realized that I had actually won a bet for once. 

The only snag was that I wasn’t sure if he was going to honour the terms. You see, I had bet that if I won, Adam had to do whatever I wanted for an entire week.

WHATEVER I WANTED. Given my over the top victory celebrations, would he still play along?

“Oh minion?” I called softly.

No answer. This was not looking good.  I decided that maybe calling him “Minion” was a bad idea.

“Adam? Could you please bring me a glass of warm water?”

More silence.

What were my options here? The one thing we had left out of our exhaustive pre-bet negotiations were retributions should the loser re-neg and not perform his losing duties.

We hadn’t even appointed a neutral third party to serve as Hyena Bet Commissioner to mediate in the event of noncompliance! Was I insane? These were rookie mistakes! I should have known better.

I had just decided that if he reneged I would have no choice but to embark on a merciless internet smear campaign covering all available social networks, when he appeared in the doorway.

Without meeting my eyes or uttering a word he placed a tall glass of warm water on my bedside table.

Oh. My. God.

This is happening! It’s actually happening!

It’s ON!

For the next week he is at my beck and call!

Now, I have to tread carefully and not overstep, avoid the temptation to abuse this new-found power. But, I must also take full advantage of my win, I never win!

Guys, what should I make him do?

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  • Reply 10 Easy Steps to Getting Your Book Published* | Sweet Madeleine March 20, 2014 at 9:22 AM

    […] spent five seven a million years in relative obscurity writing inane blog posts about things like hyena bets and the perfect fuchsia lipstick, that […]

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