I blame it on the cat.

His name is Invest. He was born in Hurricane season, and the other kittens in his litter are Cat One, Cat Two – all the way to the biggest one, Cat Five.

But we should of named this one Houdini.

He can hide in anything. Leave out a half-empty Kleenex box, and he’s gone for days.

I need to get the apartment sprayed for termites, which means getting the cat out of here for the duration. I talk my mother-in-law, Ms. Larda, into cat-sitting.

I warn her to expect his vanishing acts, but it still makes her nervous if she don’t see this cat for a few hours. Eventually she’ll maybe yank open her underwear drawer or something and there’s Invest, reclining like royalty, and he puts his head up and gives her a look like “Why do you disturb me, commoner ?”

The other day Ms. Larda washes a load of towels, after checking the washer for a small cat, and dries them, after checking the drier likewise, and goes off to take a hot bath.

She gets all nice and relaxed, and then she realizes all her towels are still in the drier.

So, she has to squish her way to the laundry room at the back of the house. As she passes through the kitchen, she notices the cat reclining in her good punch bowl away up on top the cabinet. She yells, which must startle Invest. The bowl starts to teeter. She leaps like a ballerina across the room to catch it. And she gets it – only her wet feet slip and she hits her chest on edge of the kitchen counter. Which snaps her rib.

But she saves the punch bowl and the cat. Neither of which show no gratitude.

The people at the emergency room check her out and say since no vital organs are punctured, there isn’t much they can do. Take Tylenol.

But it hurts. It hurts too bad to even wear a bra around it.

I got to explain. Ms. Larda got a figure like a wedge. She is what you’d call well-endowed. She ain’t the type to flit around braless. She’d attract a crowd.

Like I said, I blame the cat. But it’s my cat, so I know I got to do something.

I sent off for a bunch of those washable stick-on bras. Rush order – the size that is as high in the alphabet as they go. The ad says, “Massive Breast Support: Lift up and supports your boobs to achieve the desired perkiness, roundness, and cleavage.” That is a direct quote. It also claims you can pick up a watermelon with a pair of them things. There is actually a picture.

At first, Ms. Larda is suspicious of them, like they are maybe immoral.

“Never did I think I would be wearing pasties, like a Bourbon Street stripper,” she says.

But they work. She can once more show herself in public.

At least up to a point. She probably should have read the directions. She washes them with bleach. She also applies her scented after-bath powder before she sticks them on. Both of which the instructions specifically say not to do. So eventually, they lose their stickiness. At least the left one does.

It happens at the Winn-Dixie. She is in line, checking out the grocery-store tabloids (“Extraterrestrials Have Hot Sex”) and with no warning, her left pastie gives up the ghost. It sounds like a plumber’s friend in a toilet. Thorrrr-sup!

Credit to Ms. Larda; she remains calm. She says to the completely innocent lady in front of her, in a stage whisper, “Gas-X works good for that.”

Then she snatches up another tabloid, holds it in front of her chest and points to whatever scandalous headline they got. (“Politicians Have Hot Sex”) and tells the cashier. “Can you believe this?” She holds it like that the whole time she is checking out.

And she walks out the store like royalty, head held high, even if one boob is drooping low.

She learned something from that cat.