Belgian Catnip

By Tiber

As you know, for a little extra cash, my father has rented a room up here on the third floor of the house to a business associate of a friend, a Belgian man named Jasper. You also know that the first night the slight and polite Jasper was here, he was mistaken for an intruder by Aunt April, who attacked him with a pitchfork.

Thereafter avoiding dining with us, he then was almost carried off into the forest by the dogs, who discovered he had some snack food in his pockets.

Dad keeps reducing the price of the room, however, and brave Jasper keeps staying on.

This week, Dad even managed to entice Jasper to join us once more for dinner since Cook’s food is so good. But even here, Jasper’s path is not all smooth. For some reason, from the beginning, Cook has taken a liking to him and she keeps pressing large amounts of Brussels sprouts on him. (“In case he’s homesick!“) I can only hope he doesn’t loathe them the way I do, because now there’s no way to avoid them, The only thing worse than having Cook like you is having Cook not like you.

Jasper did get a food offering that he enjoyed, however, when an older woman seen disappearing up the back stairs left a little package of Belgian chocolates outside his bedroom door.

He told Dad to please thank Aunt April for her peace offering but it turned out the “love chocolates” were not from Aunt April at all. They must have been left by the unknown woman Mom spotted one day, who may be living on her own somewhere up in the attics.

Hearing about this woman’s amorous interest as well as Cook’s must have lit a competitive fire in Aunt April and since she has no food to give Jasper, she’s been making rare appearances outside of her suite every night, to stand outside of his bedroom door and serenade him with her recorder.

The key here, I think, is the fact that Jasper has no romantic interest whatsoever in any of these females, which, of course, in the weird and wonderful world of women, makes him Belgian catnip.

I always remember how in the original version of the movie “Bedazzled,” the girl is mesmerized when Peter Cook, playing the famous singer, intones, “You fill me with inertia.”

And she was hooked.

The more genuinely uninterested a man can be, to the point of actually spurning any of a woman’s advances, the more the woman will pick him as her one and only and discard everyone else.

When you really stop and think about it, it’s a wonder that human beings ever get manufactured at all. 


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