'This cat only has one ear," Husband said, as he gave a bloody, mangled alley feline some love on our way to the bar. (Husband is St. Francis, but that's another story.)

"Gross, his eye is dangling off his face, stop touching him," I said. (I'm a dick, but that's another story.)

Date night is sparse in my abode. It's cool, we have a spawn and she's an absolute delight. But when Husband and I have a rare free night, we morph into giddy tweenwolves, ISO the blood of brown bottles.

The Usual Plan: Bus downtown, hit old haunts, call everyone and drink Denver. The Actual Plan: Walk 1.5 blocks to the neighborhood bar, sit belly-up, watch SportsCenter, walk home and play cards.

christy fantz
Christy Fantz

Friday, Husband and I had a free night to rage like it was 1999. (Which usually is the end result: With he in his Jncos and I in my Hammer Pants, we both settle down for rummy and a '90s song-off.*)

Before I tear into our raging evening, I'll admit we haven't been sleeping lately. Our Great Pyrenees mix has what I've dubbed night terrors/panic attacks. Poor Abby girl's a mess. She's had nearly every vet test, that left a diagnosis of high-blood pressure on top of her prior ailment of a jacked-up thyroid. With no "night-terror" prognosis in sight, for ~two nonstop weeks every few months, she paces, heart it races (get outta here, Dr. Dog) and bathrooms (No. 1, 2 and 3) all over the carpet. All the time. She constantly jerks as if she's spooked and is inconceivably inconsolable. She forcefully knocks household objects over (including her Saint Bernard-mixed brother, Clyde) with her giant noggin and barks nonstop the nanosecond she steps out the door.


Coupled with a monster job workload, a toddler and stress-grinding my teeth to dust nightly, during Abby's Apocalypse, REM sleep is as scarce as hen's teeth. (What?)

I am one tired broad.

So, Friday when the baby went for a sleepover to Grandma's, Husband and I decided ditch "The Usual Plan" and put on Adult Pants and steam clean. As lax as I am when my kid plays in germs, dog urine on carpet is unsanitary. But after getting half in the wine (and beer) bag over primetime TV, we decided to launch "The Actual Plan" and make a swift bar trip for some whiskey power before cleaning.

The baby's not here. If we don't go to the bar we might as well get AARP on the horn, we thought. But after finding no belly-up seats, we Usain Bolted for the door (Fantz, you fool).

"What's the point of going to the bar if you can't sit at the bar?" Husband said. "Horseshit."

"I know. I'm not sitting in a booth, that's ridiculous," I said.

So we began on a six-block trek to our other neighborhood pub on Tennyson ISO belly-up seats.

A block in, exhausted, we turned back.

We are such losers, I thought, as we walked two blocks back home.

"I mean, after seeing a cat with half an ear, we should've known our night really wasn't going to get any better than that," Husband said, as if he'd heard my inner monologue.

It didn't. We steam cleaned until 4 a.m. and got in bed just in time for Abby to start chewing on our dresser for four straight hours.

Then the baby came home.

We're a good time.

*His Ace of Base has nothing on my Ned's Atomic Dustbin.

Christy Fantz: twitter.com/fantzypants