Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wednesday's Words for June 16, 2010

The difference between dogs and cats is that dogs have masters while cats have staff.

This truth has been brought home to me in the last few months. I find that I am a human, living at the mercy of feline masters.

When my daughter and her son moved in, you recall, they brought with them their fifteen-year-old cat, Crash. I had met Crash many times when visiting my daughter and he treated me with predictable feline distain. After all, I was a foreign human being taking up space in his home.

In the fifteen months my daughter lived here, Crash came to tolerate my presence in his new home. I was not permitted to pick him up of course; the occasional pat I was allowed, as long as I gave him his cat treats, first.

You know that myth going around that animals have a “pecking order”? Don’t believe it. When Crash moved in here he should have been low-cat on the totem pole. Unfortunately for my familiar, Boots, Crash doesn’t play second banana to anyone.

So then my daughter moved out. She took an apartment at the other end of town, and, much to my shock and dismay, acquired another kitten.

This was my daughter’s first mistake.

This kitten was cute and cuddly, as they all are, and a bit of a live wire. It loved to do three things: eat, sleep on my daughter’s bed, and attack Crash. This newcomer to the family was given the name MoJo. MoJo was soon joined by another kitten, one who had hidden in the spare tire well on my son’s work truck. My son already has a cat (are you listening, daughter?) and could not keep it but he knew who would. This kitten’s name, of course, is Hitch.

You may wonder why I was shocked and dismayed by my daughter’s taking in two more cats. I guess this is where I admit yet one more flaw in my personality: it’s bad enough that I usually cannot bear to hurt the feelings of another human being. I extend that anathema to animals, too. You see, I would never get a cute, cuddly kitten for fear of hurting my Boots’ feelings.

The apartment my daughter rented was atop a pizzeria and didn’t work out for her. It was too noisy, too smelly, and too hot. So she looked, and low and behold, she found an apartment just two and a half blocks away from me.

The first thing that she did, after she got moved in, was to show Crash and MoJo how they could walk from their house to Grandma’s, to visit!

This was my daughter’s second mistake.

Crash came to visit Grandma, and stayed. MoJo only came once in a while to eat, but Crash figured he’d moved back home. Daughter would come, take him back to her apartment. And he would remain for an hour or two. Then he would return to Grandma’s.
One time when she came and said to him, quite sternly, “We’re going home,” he blinked at her, turned around, and headed up the stairs, to the “apartment” he’d occupied with her when she lived here.

My daughter, as you can imagine, is very hurt by this perceived feline betrayal. I’ve explained to her that as far as Crash is concerned, the betrayal is all hers.

Well, last week, my daughter brought home yet one more kitten, this one black and even more of a live wire than MoJo was. And yesterday morning, MoJo came into my house, with a live bird offering, which because I speak kitty I know means, hi grandma, can I live here too?

I think in my next life, I’m going to be a cat.


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