Catching you up from the lack couple posts, I have trapped four feral kittens, and now, I am seeking homes for them.
I begin the flyer campaign. I stuff every doorway in my townhome development in an “adorable little kittens looking for a good home” campaign. In the meantime, Maria at work decides to take one. She wants the runt, which she names Clio, telling me to make sure as I write this that it’s spelt Clio and not Cleo (she must have some weird anti-Egyptian thing).
I get a call on one of my flyers. A neighbor says she’ll take one. When I describe the three, she wants the one that has spirit, the black and white who I finally named Black & White. I walk over to the neighbor’s house with Black & White. I find out that this woman is the one who makes all the noise at the Association meetings and gets into public fights with her policeman husband in the process. And she has this hyper-aroused, baritone rotweiller that won’t stop attacking the kitty carrier, as well as a little kid and a full grown cat who doesn’t seem to like the addition I’ve brought to audition. Well, I’m about to back out of this, see, when she tells me Black & White is really going to a friend of hers. My little kitten will only be in her home overnight. She vouches for the character of the new petslave who’ll be taking Black and White. I tell her the same thing I tell all the other owners—if they change their mind after a few weeks and want their sanity refunded, she can return the kitten to me. Millions of unwanted cats in this country are thrown out of cars, let out the door never to be let back in, or handed over to shelters. I didn’t take these guys in to end that way. She promises.
Two to go. I’m really debating on whether or not to keep the gray couple who remain in my kitchen. I know that soon I’ll be too attached to part with them. Then I get a call. A fellow patient of my sister-in-law’s vet will take one off my hands. On the phone, she seems like an impressionable young woman, so I try to talk her into taking the pair. I tried to talk everyone who took one into taking two since, based on previous experience, I didn’t want any animal to spend all day alone. My last cat would meow plaintively at times in ostensible loneliness, and at night, after being cooped up all day in a dark house, would greet me so profusely I just knew he could use company. Anyway, none of my prospects would take more than one kitten, but this woman says she’d think about it.
She arrives with her equally attractive twenty-something roommate. I wished I was in college again., but that’ll be the subject of a whole essay on its own. These two roomies seemed very compassionate. I knew they’d make good owners, so I put the deft tongue talk on them to take both kittens, pointing out the inherently adorable nature of the kittens in general; the stylistic advantages of a matched pewter set; their fine shaggy, shimmer; the trendsetting potential of monochromatic twins. “Think about it, you’ll be the envy of everyone in your university. There’s something so yin/yang about a male/female pair,” I say, much more practical after the set have been sexually muted through questionable surgery. I keep that last thought to myself. Well, they have a very good friend who’ll take Inspector Gadget, and they’ll take the female. After making them vouch for the character of their friend and his live-in girlfriend, I agree to let the last of my little friends go, again with the proviso that they can be returned rather than given to a shelter or to someone else. I even throw in the last of the kitten toys, the scratch post, a cat carrier and my half-truck load of gourmet cat food that smells so good it makes you want to eat it in a pinch (after smoking marijuana once, I tried Gaines Burgers for dogs, but found them wanting).
After they left with the kittens, I felt empty, like a parent who’d just seen his last child off to college. And I also felt relief. Like a parent who’s just seen his last child off to college. And I felt accomplishment. And I felt a tad incomplete—in my heart, I knew I should’ve kept at least one. but the kittens were not quite done with me yet. More of this in our next post.
© 2021 by Michael C. Just
Mike’s novel, The Dirt: The Journey of a Mystic Cowboy, is available in softcover or eBook formats through Amazon.
You can purchase the book through this website. Or go straight to amazon at https://www.amazon.com/s?k=the+dirt+journey+of+a+mystic+cowboy&crid=1S40Q4BXSUWJ6&sprefix=the+dirt%3A+journey+of+a+m%2Caps%2C180&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_23
Mike’s other titles, including The Crippy, The Mind Altar, and Canyon Calls, are available through Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B002
Two of his short stories have recently been published online. The Obligate Carnivore has been published by the Scarlet Leaf Review @ Category: MICHAEL JUST – SCARLET LEAF REVIEW
I See You, Too has been published by the 96th of October @ I See You, Too – 96th of October