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Inspirational Reads

A New Chapter Begins...

May 26, 2010

It's only fitting that I should write this the weekend after Shrek 4 opened, as this feels a bit like a film franchise desperately clinging to its characters and well-worn storylines (and welcome) by spawning what seems to be an endless stream of sequels, prequels, and in-between stories.

A couple of weeks ago I detailed our failed attempt at pet-ownership. When the last of the dirt was placed on the kittens grave, I thought that this tragic tale had finished. Being a frustrated, would-be author who doesn't believe in happily-ever-after endings, I should have known that the conclusion wasn't really the conclusion. Nothing concludes; there is just a permanent sustained condition of being.

Monday night, I was outside doing one of those fatherly, manly things I enjoy so much: grilling. Sure, I was grilling hot dogs, but I was grilling Angus hot dogs. Not only does Angus beef make for a better hamburger, the floor sweepings and meat-leavings that go into a hot dog casing make for a damned delicious frankfurter.

Whilst outside, I sheltered under the roof of the porch attached to my building, where I kept dry from the occasional rain shower that passed through. It was getting on toward dusk, and it was time for the birds to sit in their trees and declare their territory and, as such, the end of the day. One of those fuckers that kept sounding off was my dear friend, the red-shouldered hawk.

Kew, kew, kew, kew... it endlessly wailed from one edge of the property. As I stood there listening, I heard another one calling from the other side of the property. Except this was higher pitched, and it was only a single call.

Dutifully, I rotated the hot dogs on the grill, when I heard the hawk call again. Kew, kew, kew... it wailed. And then, from my building, higher-pitched, an echoing kew, kew, kew. Except, it was from inside the building, and it wasn't kew, kew, kew. It was mew, mew, mew.

"Oh fuck," I muttered, "the rest of the kittens..."

Because I'm like a cat with a death wish, curiosity got the better of me. I went into the building, and I heard two, isolated, plaintive cries of mew! I poked around a little bit, and found inside the large, well-built workbench, huddled inside a blue bucket, one single gray kitten.

I heard no other cries.

Like a fool, I went inside and told my wife to come with me. Out we walked into the yard and I showed the fuzzy little kitten. She immediately wanted to snatch it up, but I talked her out of it. It's probably only about two and a half weeks old, and it needs to make it to the four week mark before we can separate it from its mother.

Smartly, we did not mention it to the kids. Instead, the next day, after I put them on the bus, I brought a small dish of milk out to the building and left it. The kitten, however, was not in the bucket. That same morning, I saw the same cat that I had scared off my back porch, so I knew it must be the same mother that had left Peachigo and Motley in my kids' toy bin.

Last night, in an effort to keep the cats around, I put out a fresh dish of milk and a paper plate with a scoop of chicken salad on it. I even picked out the nuts because I'm not sure how felines feel about pecans. This morning, both chicken salad and milk were gone, so I left more. I still cannot find the kitten, and my wife is getting upset. She wants the fuzzy little fucker RIGHT THE FUCK NOW!!! I can only try to bribe the cats into sponging off us some more with delicious sandwich fillers and milk.

But, this whole thing makes me feel like a total fucking chode. I'm sure that, had we not snatched the kittens from the box, the mother would have been back for them and they might still be alive today. Sure, that's a big maybe, but it's still in the realm of possibility, and it makes me feel like an asshole.

So, the saga of the kittehs continues on, and it looks like we will, in fact, be getting a cat in the very near future. In the meantime, wish me luck that I can manage to not need to bury this one a week after discovery.


BeckEye said...

Aw, I hope the little guy (or gal) is okay.

Logical Libby said...

Maybe you are the kitten whisperer...

SkylersDad said...

Good luck to you and to the new kittens.

Bev said...

You are right to leave him be since the mama cat is still around. Is the mother feral? If not, I'd probably try to lure them both inside.

As soon as he's old enough, scoop him up and take him to the vet!

Good luck. Hope you guys get your kitteh once & for all. I love gray cats, btw - they're my 2nd fave color after orange tabbies.

Jill VT said...

(Knocking head against wall)...stick with DOGS.

Scope said...

Hopefully your talking your wife out of snatching the little pussy didn't deprive you of a little...

sleep as you lay in bed, discussing the pro's & con's of the situation.

What did you think I was going to say?

Eric said...

Around these parts, the circling hawks bring a swift end to kitties out in the open.

Harmony said...

"I can only try to bribe the cats into sponging off us some more with delicious sandwich fillers and milk. ~ Made me laugh out loud. I know a couple of humans I can send your way for that kind of "sweet" living.

Side note: Milk can give cats don't give them too much.

kate said...

Oh, god...I thought that when you said hawk and then said kitteh that this story was going to somehow end up with a kitteh homicide and then I was going to have to cry at work.

It's just about chicken salad. *phew*

I'm a sucker for all things cute, tiny and helpless. I almost brought a handful of teeny, tiny bunnies inside the other day, but didn't because 1) my husband would've killed me and 2) my cat and/or dog would've killed the bunnies.

Gwen said...

A chance to redeem yourself! Bravo! Also, more chances to poke fun! Yay yay yay!

Cora said...

Any sign of it yet?