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Inspirational Reads

Fluffy and the Rabbit

November 18, 2009

Damn, guys. I didn't mean to make everyone cry over my dead dog. Look, if it makes it any easier, she was an old dog. It was her time to go. She was well past the point where you could teach her new tricks. Plus, I'll admit it: she had picked up that old dog smell. You know what I'm talking about. The one where you pet her and then the smell of dog permeates your palms and sticks with you wherever you go. You can be driving back to school and be like "When did I leave molding, rotten socks under the heater?" and then you realize that the smell isn't gym socks gone wild, but rather it's the stink of the dog you patted on your way out the door still clinging tenaciously to your flesh. Yeah, that's what she had adopted. Nice dog. But she stunk.

Better? All those tears dried up? No? Fine.

Let me tell you about my cat. Everyone loves a little pussy story.

Oh, and by the way. I believe it was Adrienzgirl who said she liked me because I'm a dog person. Well, sorry, but I'm not. Don't get me wrong. I like dogs. I love dogs. In fact, here, let me give you another stupid dog story.

I was walking out to my car a few months back in the early spring when I heard some sort of jangling sound off my port side. I looked up and saw a fat beagle waddling toward me in that stupid way that only hounds can pull off and yet they still look adorable. Being that I've been around dogs all my life (well, most of it, anyway), I knew to offer my hand to Stupid Dog so that he could see I'm not a threat. The only problem is, when dogs sniff my hand to see if I'm friendly or not, they don't smell "good guy, might have spare sausage, should make him friend," they in fact smell "sucker". That's what Stupid Dog did. He sniffed my hand and immediately rolled over onto his back to show me his belly. Dawwwwwww! How can you deny this? So, I reach down and pet him. And he's a fantastic, fat beagle and he's all like "Look at me, I'm a fantastic, fat beagle. Don't you love me? Don't you want to shower me with sausages?" And I got done petting him and I said, "Well, Stupid Dog, it's time for me to go. I've got an appointment to keep." And Stupid Dog looked up at me with eyes that said "Where's the fucking sausages?" And I looked back at him and saw his tag. So, I looked at the tag. It was from someone in my neighborhood.

Since they were on the way, I loaded Stupid Dog into my car and I drove his fat, worthless ass home. Because I'm a sucker like that. To top it off, I rolled down the fucking window so that he could hang his head out of it and sniff the breeze. Most likely in search of sausages. Finally, I took him home, but instead of just dumping him out, I carried his fat ass to the door, rang the bell, and returned Stupid Dog to his rightful owners. He was so happy to be home, and his family was happy to have him back. He gave me one last look that said, "Thanks, but next time, don't forget the sausages."

See, I'm a sucker.

The thing is, I like cats, too. As much as I love the dopey companionship of a dog, I love the fuck-you-I'll-slit-your-fucking-throat attitude of cats. I like it when they stare at me from the windowsill, visually giving me the finger. I like the way that they climb up onto the bed and get in your face and purr loudly and say "The sun is up, Asshole, and you are, too! I'm going to sleep all day today, but you sure as fuck aren't going to sleep in on my watch. Now, up and at 'em. And open a can of tuna, Ebeneezer. I deserve a treat."

Yep. I sure do like cats.

Anyway, my first cat was Katy. My mom, um, liberated her from her hair dresser as a kitten. Her hair dresser had about ten thousand kittens running around the farm, and she just sort of shoved one of them into her purse on the way back to the car, figuring that Lisa would never miss one out of ten thousand cats, right? Turns out, Lisa didn't. And so I had my first true pet. I named her for a character in a book I had checked out from the library that very same day! Clearly, fate and the gods were telling me that I was going to be the proud owner of a cat. For about a week.

The dog from up the street killed her while we were away one weekend at the Lake. I came home to find her little body there in the driveway where she had been mauled. Fucking asshole dog.

My second cat I found in an old shed out behind the house of an old lady who lived two houses behind me. She was a black-and-white long-haired cat. I loved her immediately. I named her Fluffy. Because she was. She was really fluffy. Her hair was so long and so thick and so unruly that, in the winter when her coat got thicker, she would get these massive hairballs around her neck from where she would turn her head and such that I couldn't brush out--no matter how hard I tried--so that we had to wait until the spring when she started shedding for them to fall off. The only problem was, they would be so massive and they'd lay there in the grass and get all wet with dew and rain that you'd be walking along and think that you had just happened upon an aborted kitten. I'd always sort of shriek and step back and then realize "Oh, it's just one of Fluffy's hairballs". And then I'd throw it away.

Fluffy lived a pretty luxurious life. For about six months. And then the dog up the street mauled her. Fucking asshole dog. Except, this time, he didn't kill my cat. He just broke her leg. And, well, my parents, being the kind-hearted souls that they are, decided to shell out the money to have her leg fixed. Hooray! A happy ending. For once.

Fluffy was a pretty good cat, too. She was an accomplished hunter. Only problem is, she'd bring me her trophies. I can't remember the number of times I would be out in the driveway, shooting free throws, and here would come Fluffy with some dead bundle of something-or-other in her mouth, a big dumb grin on her face, and then she would lay it at my feet. The free throw stripe in the driveway became some sort of sick and twisted trophy room for the cat, or a mausoleum for various rodents, birds and lagomorphs from the yard. It all depends on your point of view.

Not knowing what to do, I'd pet her, tell her what a good kitty she was, and then I'd scoot the dead little thing over out of my way and continue on practicing. She'd finally take the morsel and go sit on top of my dad's car and eat it. "That goddamned cat's on my car again!" he'd scream as he came running out the back door, shooing her off.

I loved that cat.

She apparently had a taste for rabbit. One spring while I was in high school, a rabbit was hanging out in our side yard. My mom would watch it frolic and play in the early evening light. Then, one day, while she was sitting on the front porch, doing her duty and diligently watching the neighbors, she saw Fluffy coming through the yard, dragging something huge. Turns out, it was the rabbit. But, the rabbit was SO big, she had a hard time moving the body. Plus, she had only mortally wounded it and was apparently looking for me to show me the kill. I went out there and she was like "Look at me. I'm so proud of myself." And the rabbit said "I'm not dead yet." Okay, sorry. Tasteless, I know. So, I yelled for my dad, because I knew she would need help getting the rabbit up onto his car, so I figured he could help her.

"Oh no," my dad said, and then he did the unthinkable: He took the rabbit away from her.

Oh fuck, was she pissed. Have you ever seen a cat stomp off mad in a huff? She actually managed to do it. She stomped around the yard for a good thirty minutes, meowing loudly. And not a pretty meow. She meowed in that pissed off way. And it was constant. And, apparently, she could hold a grudge because, after she initially quieted down, she would sound off again whenever someone turned on a light inside the house. She was not happy and she was going to let everyone know about it.

Evidently, this was the final straw (the first straw being the arrival of Meg, whom she detested, because Meg thought that cats were subservient, and in case you haven't noticed, cats serve no masters). I could almost hear her little voice, amidst all the meowing that night, saying, "I bust my ass to bring you all the finest dead small animals that I can find in the yard, lay them at your feet, and then when I rid the yard of the evil leporine menace, and this is how you thank me? With a yappy by taking away the prize I worked so hard to ambush and kill. Well, fuck you very much. I'm going to go find an old lady to live with."

And so she did. She moved out. Took her ball and went home. a different home. She went and lived with an old woman up the hill. Every so often, she would show up on the front sidewalk. She'd look in, see that we still had the dog, and then mosey on her way with a sassy flick of the tail and the best feline cold shoulder she could offer.

So, there you have it. I'm not a dog person. I'm not a cat person. I love both dogs and cats. I'm like a paradox wrapped up in an enigma with an outer coating of contradiction and punctuated with a question mark.

And yet, despite all that, I still smell like a sucker.


Amber Tidd Murphy said...

I ran over a cat while driving through my neighborhood earlier this year, in a bit of a hurry to get back to work after taking a longish lunch.

I was not, however, in as much of a hurry as the cat who raced across the street without looking both ways first.

I pulled over and assesed the damage. It was not pretty. The cat had no tags, so I couln't walk up to someone's house and say, "Gee, sorry, your cat met vehicular demise."

I cried my eyes out. A lady stopped and called animal control, and lifted the cat by its skin and pulled it off to the side of the road.

Worst day ever.

Eric said...

A happy ending for the cat, huh?
I wish the spare time for a pet.

Judearoo said...

Love the way cats really make you work for it; none of his happy 'I-adore-everyone' crap with them. Its deliciously human. :)

Joshua said...

I'm still a dog guy. I like cats, but dogs snuggle up to you. Cats merely placate you with fake affection to get what they want. Anyway, your dog post led me to write my own this morning, with a little plug to your story thrown in at the beginning.


Travis said...

Two things.

First, I love how you said port. Made me chuckle.

Second, you had a fuckin charity stripe on your court?!?!? Must have been nice to be wealthy!

Steam Me Up, Kid said...

I think all of your posts from now on should end with the dog from down the street mauling the subject of your story. It could be, like, your signature closing line.

Just Another Momma said...

I'm much more of a dog person but that's because I have an asshole cat. Never had one like him. He tears up the house worse than the kids and craps everywhere. He's no longer allowed in . . . . Except when it's cold outside. We are convinced he's possessed.

red said...

I am both a dog and cat person, too. People who only like dogs are pussies. (ha! See what I did there?)

Nej said...

I love 'em both, but I'm much more of a cat person.

Did you ever "take care" of the dog from up the street? Break his legs, give him cement boots, make him an offer he couldn't refuse? :-)

BeckEye said...

My Dad always used to say the only good cat is a dead cat.

Cats suck. I want to be slobbered on with love. Dogs rule.

Dr Zibbs said...

I love dogs (except Schnauzers and a few other loser breeds)

As for cats? They suck.

adrienzgirl said...

Well, I still think your sexy, even if you like cats....too!

June said...

I would LMAO if my gak would bring home a dead chippy and eat it on Wards truck (or gakked it up on Wards truck)...

carissajaded said...

Well.... I know all to well that Old dog smell. I don't even want to touch my parent's old poodle for fear that smell will take me over...

I reallllly don't like cats, but Fluffy sounds kind of awesome. I could use Fluffy around my house to bring things in that would torture my gay roommates harsher than I can...

Ed Adams said...

"Don't you want to shower me with sausages?" And I got done petting him and I said, "Well, Stupid Dog, it's time for me to go."

--that sounds dirty out of context.

Or is that just me?

Pearl said...

Great. Now if we ever meet in person I will expect sausages.

Cora said...

I hate cats. Hate 'em. Except for my neighbor's cat, Jack Sparrow, he's cool - well, when he isn't putting muddy little footprints all over my car.

SoBeAck-with a K said...

I too shed a few tears at the Nutmeg tale, but could not stop laughing from your sorry attempt to make our sappy asses feel better. Brilliant!