We’re dissecting the cat in my anatomy class. You know how every dissection has the same basic stock characters? There’s the kid who’s too squeamish to look in the cat’s general direction. There’s the kid who has a little too much fun probing around in there with the instruments. There’s the kid who’s constantly fretting, “Did you see the coronary artery? Did we label the coronary artery? That’s on the test, right?” There’s the kid who gives the cat a look of complete disinterest before checking out five minutes in and coming back five minutes before the bell. Then there’s the kid who names the cat and strokes its head and croons, “Soon you will be mine.”
I think I’m turning into the kid who’s always eating snacks around the cat. I have this dissection right before lunch every single day. Come on, a girl gets hungry. So there I am, gnawing at a granola bar and watching my friend slice through connective tissue when some girl walks past and says, shocked, “Are you EATING next to a DEAD CAT?”
I blink. I hadn’t realized it was taboo. I gesture toward the cat and said, “Am I supposed to share?”
(TWENTY POINTS TO WHOEVER CAUGHT THE PSYCH REFERENCE. I actually think that episode had to do with the Little Boycat, too.)
I am worried that I’m being conditioned. What if I start getting hungry every time I see a dead cat? What if it elevates? What if I get hungry whenever I see dead animals? WHAT IF I EAT THE ANIMALS? Is this how cannibalism starts?