March 09, 2006

I'd Sleep More Soundly With a Cat Like This

Mouse patrol! I love this post and I am jealous of Kenneth for having such an excellent cat.

No, my two little fat things never go on mouse patrol, and a handful of you will remember exactly how devoid of predatory instincts my cats actually are (those of you who don't may see the extended entry--it's something I wrote elsewhere).

Bring the mouse into the house to play with drop at mama's feet and promptly forget all about entirely, even as mama screams and shrieks and screams some more?--Sure! Kill the mouse while it's still outside the house, where it belongs?--Where's the fun in that? Fall asleep, I mean snoring asleep, I mean passed OUT, when locked in a bathroom with a mouse?--Oh, my cats excel at that one!

They're too fat and they're too old and when they do things like terrorize me by bringing home mice they don't really want, I kind of hate them. Especially when I contrast them with Troy, the faux-diabetic cat who is diligent on mouse patrol.


I want to testify to you that tonight, I have had a change of heart about a major part of my life. Tonight, I have decided that people who hate cats* are absolutely 100% correct in their assessment of the creatures.

You get a cat--if you're me, one just comes and finds you--and you take it to the veterinarian and you pay exorbitant sums to vaccinate it and you buy it cat food and you clean its litterbox and you pet it and love it and let it outside when it clamors to go and for what? FOR WHAT?

So it can reward you by bringing home a trophy, of course. In the case of my most vicious, carnivorous cat, a trophy in the form of a mouse that is nowhere near dead.

Oh, no, where's the fun in bringing mama home a corpse? That would never do. Better to bring home a young, fresh, aerobicized, spastically scurrying little rodent that will scare the daylights out of mama. Mama will really appreciate that action.

Mama would like to know if any of you would like a cat? Wait, hear me out here. Let me tell you all her selling points:

--Missing two front teeth, so cannot eat (much cheaper) dry cat food. This bitch is into me for two cans of Fancy Feast a day.

--Longhaired, so will get snarls if you don't brush her regularly.

--Hates being brushed and will try to bite you if you do it.

--Luckily, is missing two front teeth, so bites seldom successful deterrent to brushing (see above).

--Screeches constantly for this, that, and the other. Don't tell me I need to work harder to appease her, either. You have no idea the appeasement that goes on around here.

That said, I do not appease her to the point of appreciating live vermin being brought home. When I OH SO FOOLISHLY opened the back door tonight to let her in, and I saw a tail hanging out of her mouth, I shrieked like a banshee.

That scared her into dropping the mouse.

Which scared the mouse into running under the desk with no regard for the fact that MY FEET GO THERE.

I would tell you the whole gory story from that point on, but I have already rudely unloaded it, play-by-play fashion, via the miracle of instant messaging, on this poor guy. I guarantee that at least once tonight, if not seventeen times, Hubris wished he had a wife at home who would yell at him to get off the computer, damnit, and I mean NOW.

I should probably at least tell you the part where I opened the back door to admit another, entirely different cat from the one I am now desperately trying to give to you, only to realize too late that THIS CAT ALSO HAD A MOUSE IN HER MOUTH.

Seriously, I'm not making that up.

But that cat did a better job neutralizing her rodent (Hosanna, Hosanna to cats who are NOT missing two front teeth), and he was dazed enough that I was able to sweep him out the front door with little resistance. So he was only a problem for maybe two minutes, two minutes during which I wept and begged God to tell me why He was doing this to me.

I should also probably add that the whole evening I have been bitterly regretting that I am not this woman, who loves mice and rats and all manner of rodents, and does not mind imagining the feel of their little clawed feet scampering about her bare and un-be-goosebumped flesh. If I were only that woman, I'm sure I would have a roommate by now, a roommate named "Tiny," who would sleep in a cage that I cleaned out and lined with fresh newspapers regularly in a loving, thankful manner.

But I am not that woman, and so Tiny rests beneath a plastic mixing bowl that I was eventually able to drop over him, a feat not easy to accomplish when you're crouching atop your bathroom counter in the "scared shitless" position, and I have weighted that down with the heaviest book in the house, which is the medical dictionary, and best of all, I have my bathroom back. Just, you know, mind the mixing bowl.

And in the morning I will call the complex and demand they get a maintenance guy down here to remove him. And while they are engaged in that process, I will take myself out to breakfast, or hie myself down to Best Buy, or WALK TO EL PASO, A MERE 45 MILES FROM HERE, I don't even care--but I am not dealing with Tiny any more. Tiny has already given me sweats, palpitations, hyperventilatory syndrome, and situational depression-slash-anxiety this evening alone. On the plus side, he's certainly taken my mind off the cramps.

See, I'm a feminist, so I believe women can do anything.

But I'm also a capitalist. So I believe any dirty work you can possibly palm off on someone else through the magical medium of money, you fucking delegate.

UPDATE: Tiny's dead and I feel terrible. If I just hadn't been such a chickenshit ninny about this whole thing, I could have got him out of the apartment last night and back to his nest.

I'll tell you what I hate: I hate that I couldn't control the fear. I do mean "couldn't," not just "chose not to/didn't want to badly enough;" the poor scared little guy would run at me and I'd just lose it, I mean weeping, sobbing, hysterical losing it, every time. And if you can't stay strong when someone as cool as Hubris is cheering you on to stay strong, well, you're hopeless then. I'M hopeless.

Damn, Tiny. I'm sorry. You were such a cute little fellow, too.

Oh, but hey, you can still adopt the miserable lowlife cat who brought this problem to me in the first place. Act now and I'll throw in a second cat, free!

Posted by Ilyka at March 9, 2006 01:59 AM in navel gazing

Ah, the other night, George, our German Shepherd puppy, tried to bring a live bunny in the house. Fortunately Linda Lou saw it and not only kept him out, she even made him drop the bunny, who ran off.

Posted by: Peter at March 9, 2006 11:00 AM

And to think, when we spoke on the phone, I had not read below the fold here, and so did not know you had been so lately traumatized.

Boy, you would have hated a couple of my past cats.

Tig hasn't managed to find any mice. Only birds. One dead, one dying, one alive that I managed to make him drop and then manhandled him indoors while it recovered and hopped away.

Boy, the jays in the area were after him for days after he killed one of their young. But I hate bluejays, so I wasn't feeling too badly.

Mice? Eh. No big deal. It's flying, stinging insects that give me the willies.

Posted by: Meryl Yourish at March 11, 2006 09:40 PM