“Mother of Invention (Patent Pending),” by Nancy Katt

Jun 25th, 2014 | By | Category: Nonfiction, Prose

I still wear Chinese mesh $1.99 ‘ghetto slippers’ everywhere. Shopping. To the beach. To Europe. In fancy hotels. Everywhere. Even Chinese women don’t wear them anymore. Their loss. I didn’t invent them, but if I did, I’d call them ‘Chinese Cock-Blockers,’ because men, apparently, hate them.

I keep my beach umbrella anchored to my beach chair, to keep it from blowing away, by attaching an old pair of pantyhose, with the crotch part intact, through the umbrella spokes, and tie it to my beach chair. I invented this. It’s called ‘The You Must Be F*%king Joking, But That’s Actually Kinda Cool, Anchor’ (patent pending).
I repaired my toilet’s broken flusher- flapper- ballcock- chain- thing-y with a paper clip. I invented this, as well. It’s called ‘The Paper Clip Ballcock Blocker’ (patent pending).

I bring alcohol (from home) everywhere alcohol is sold at inflated prices where you are a captive audience and they think you’ll just cough up the dough and buy a $12.00 glass of merlot. I put vodka in an empty plastic water bottle. I didn’t invent this, but if I did I would call it ‘The Clearly Not Water Water Bottle’ (patent pending).

I touch up the paint on my walls with white-out. White-out that I stole from work. I may have invented this, though I doubt it. I call this ‘The Pettiest of Larcenies Imaginable. Plus, F*%k You, Benjamin Moore’ (patent pending).

I don’t shop at Macy’s. Ever. Unless I was given a gift card. In which case, I would buy something for 1% of the cards worth and demand the remaining 99% not be ‘credited’ to me, but given to me in the form of cash. So I could then go shop at ‘Ross’s Dresses for Less.’ I didn’t invent this either, but if I did, I would call it ‘The Screw You, Macy’s, With Your Deals of the Day and Your Best Buys and Your 23% APR Interest Macy’s Credit Card That Caused My Identity to Be Stolen When I Opened It’ (patent pending).

I pre-fill multiple 3 ounce containers with SPF 50 sunblock at home, to take to the Caribbean, rather than purchase a $5.99 eight ounce bottle at CVS in San Juan. I did invent this and I call it ‘The Unbelievably Cheapest and Stupidest Way to Transport Sunblock, While Supporting the TSA’s Unbelievably Stupid Rules for Flying’ (patent pending).

I took multiple packs of peanut butter/cheese crackers that I bought at the ‘Dollar Store’ (cost = $1.00) to Europe to make it to the next meal, just in case they ran out of food in Europe. I believe I did invent this and I call it ‘The Basest Form of Appetite Suppression on The Face of The Planet’ (patent pending).


Defenestration-Nancy KattNancy Katt holds an MFA from Princeton. It’s not hers. She’s just holding it, for a friend. You can follow Nancy on the NJ Turnpike, where you’ll find her weeping in despair. Or you can follow her on Twitter @KattsDogma



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