The cat is dead. Long live the cat!

2008-01-19 21:09

In 1990, or maybe 1991, we got a kitten. He was small and grey; my parents wanted to name him Shadowfax, but I insisted that Greystoke would be a better name. It stuck okay. He turned into an unusually large black and white tuxedo cat, and for the last seventeen years or so, was one of the most fascinating animals I have ever encountered. He was exceptionally tame; not servile, like a dog, but he acted as though he sort of understood that we were the ones making things go. He trusted humans, and put up with a great deal of stuff. He earned his own parody of a verse from Particle Man:

Tolerant cat, tolerant cat tolerates things that bother a cat.

Anyway, Monday night, he was his normal self; a little sneezy, maybe, but normal for him. Tuesday morning, he was lying on the floor, gasping for breath. Apparently, his heart issues had finally reached the point where his body could no longer compensate for them; his lungs were full of fluid, etcetera. The vet determined that, with a diuretic to drain his lungs, he could quite happily lie down and breathe slowly in an oxygen tent, without much pain. Without the oxygen, or without the diuretic, not so good.

The odd thing about pet cats is that, after you’ve spent years teaching them to trust you, you’re pretty much expected to hire someone to kill them. That’s what we did. I didn’t get to see him, sadly; I had to be up at the office, and then take the car to the shop, so all the decisions about this got made from the waiting room of a car dealership in Burnsville. Not a great thing.

Anyway, we used to have four cats, and then we lost one, and then we got another one, and then we lost one… And we were down to three. With Stokes gone, we were down to two, and that’s just not enough to keep Luka’s dog in his place. So I went to the local impound, who turned out to have a darling little girl kitty, whose name is apparently “Molly”, sitting around looking for a home. We have brought her home, and we are trying to get her adapted to the other cats and the dog. She pretty much started out adapted to people; she sits on the bed and purrs.

Having played a lot of World of Warcraft recently, I have a sort of internal monologue.

You have completed Tasty Tartar Control Tuna Treats!
Your reputation with New Cat increased by 10.
You are now Neutral with New Cat.

Haven’t been active in blogging much lately, probably because of Winter Foo, aka Seasonal Affective Disorder. I got a full-spectrum bulb and added it to my room’s collection of light sources, we’ll see whether that helps.

Peter Seebach

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