Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Tribute to the Low Man (or Woman?) on the Totem Pole

In our house, there exists a kind of hierarchy of priorities when it comes to those who can't take care of themselves. At the top, of course, is Cyrus. I don't even really think I need to go into detail as to why - he is, after all, our child. Next comes our dog, Jager. Before Cy was born, she took top priority. (Some time, I'll tell you just how much of a priority she was as illustrated by her $1,000 doggy hospital visit - that's another story though). And then, at the very bottom, as a sort of afterthought, is our cat. Even her name suggests little attention or care - we simply call her "Cat". Hers is a story of accidental ownership.

Jager was adopted by Jason the day I left for New York, and she moved with him across the country (and back again, come to think of it). Cyrus was painstakingly planned and tried for. The cat, on the other hand, was discovered by me one December night when I was walking Jager through our Bronx neighborhood. It was snowing and she was huddling in a box. I didn't even rescue her the first time I saw her. I went back home with Jager, and then told Jason about her over dinner after he got home. I suggested we go back out to see if she was all right. We both knew, of course, that if the cat was still there we would be bringing her inside - neither of us is so heartless as to leave a cat outside in the snow. Well, she was there all right and so we brought her in. She was completely emaciated, and most definitely wouldn't have survived the night. She was so weak she couldn't walk. We fed her and made a little bed for her in a box, and then the next morning Jason set to work finding her a shelter. He called nearly every shelter in the NY-metropolitan area. Each shelter's response was the same - "Oh, you say she's inside your house? Well, congratulations on your new pet." The shelters were so overrun that they wouldn't accept an animal that had been taken in. We tried for two weeks to find her a home, and then finally accepted the fact that we had a new cat. That's how she got her name. We didn't want to name her officially when we thought we were getting rid of her so we just kept referring to her as "the cat". By the time we finally decided to keep her, the name had stuck and there it was - "Cat".

Now, some cats are quite fun and endearing...but this one is a little odd. She isn't skittish, by any means, but she can be territorial of spaces and extremely fickle - one minute she loves you and is purring loudly, and the next minute she's ripping your hand to shreds. I still kind of like her, but I'm a cat person - Jason merely tolerates her, on some days more than others. She claws the furniture and can be extremely needy in the most annoying way. She wasn't even supposed to make the cross country trip, but we couldn't find her a home with someone we knew and I just couldn't turn her out on the streets. So she still belongs to us, but kind of by default.

However, despite all of this, she has some cute moments. I realized today that I don't think I've mentioned her on this blog except for as part of our retched subletter experience. Obviously Cyrus is going to get more press time than either of our animals, but Jager at least has a label. So, I thought it might be time to give the cat a little attention, even if only via my blog. One of her few endearing qualities is that she creates some fantastic photo-ops just by chance. Here are some of our more amusing pictures of the cat:

Cat doing Su Doku

For some reason, nothing is as enticing to her as a pile of freshly folded laundry. Now, I didn't place those items on top of her - they were neatly stacked. She wedged herself underneath them for some reason.

Though I think most cats like bags, this one has an obsession with them. She seems to find it her personal responsibility to investigate any bag lying around, and sometimes she finds herself caught up in it. She dragged this bag all over the kitchen for about 20 minutes one night.

We had this bag of plastic bags hanging in our closet in the Bronx so that we could grab a plastic bag for Jager's walks. The cat decided that it made a nice bed. You can't tell in the picture, but it is suspended about four feet off of the ground.

Apparently we didn't feed her fast enough, because she sought out the food herself.

Maybe if she keeps doing cute things, we'll keep her a little longer.


  1. I liked reading about Cat and those are some great pictures. I wasn't much of a cat person until we got our first cat and now my cat has a blog!


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