As of two days ago, my cats have decided that relieving themselves in their litter box is very passe. I can’t figure out why my hardwood floors and *very* light gray carpet are suddenly so alluring. Does anyone have a great Hazmat Diva I can call??

I know this is just cat psychology 101, so I am wracking my brains trying to figure out what ails them. Didn’t they like the latest dolphin-friendly tuna brand I brought home and spooned into their ceramic Japanese soy sauce bowls? Was their new scratching post not Grade A sisal? Are their catnip mice not catnippy enough these days? Oh, the life of indoor cats. I’m not even traveling right now, so it can’t be neglect. Qu’est ce qui ce passe, kitty kitties?

And speaking of assholes, the other day I was asking my friend how Halloween went with her toddler son. She said that he acted like a total asshole. For the past 3 weeks before Halloween, he pretty much soiled himself just thinking about his excellent fireman costume, the one that my creative friend dutifully procured for her darling. On Halloween night, however, her firefighter turned tantrumy and freaked out, screaming that he wanted to be a dinosaur. “What an asshole,” she told me.

I found that insanely refreshing. In this day and age of Mother Teresa moms whose every utterance is scrutinized by Tom Cruise and his anti-post-partum crew, it is so nice to hear a woman sound off in a rational and wry way about the real baby world. Of course she loves her baby, it’s just that, well, he was acting like a total asshole.

My final thought on assholes is the attempts my ex is making to contact me after his infamous break-up email. Yes, like Carrie and her Post-it, I got broken up with over email, and I just received an email from El Jerko making certain demands about the conditions of my surrender, I mean of our getting back together. There was no, “I’m so sorry for being a cowardly asshole and breaking up with you over email, driven to act out in such a way because of my deep-seated insecurities that I have yet to explore thanks in part to my overbearing mother.”

Rather, it was just an email (his favorite medium) saying something like, “Hey there, I wish I was with you right now, but until you change I can’t be. Please change lots of fundamental things about yourself so we can get back together. Gotta go, the game is on. Later.”

What all these examples seem to have in common is a certain tendency towards tantrums in all the species, at all stages of their lives. Belly-aching about your girlfriend via email is tantamount to crying your eyes out over your Halloween costume. And having your life shit upon every once in a while by the people (or animals) you love, well, that’s all part of life and relationships too. In these cases, it’s not so much about the messes (shit happens), as how we go about cleaning them up and taking steps to prevent future intrusions.

May we all take on the assholes in our lives with grace and Diva dignity.

ps… I’m in Marie Claire on page 64!!