Wednesday, November 30, 2011

You win this time, felines.

Writing prompt from Mama Kat!
5.) Tell us the story of how your pet came to be a member of your family.

I was not supposed to have cats. I could have sworn I was a dog person. After all, when I was growing up the only animals we ever had were dogs. No cats, no hamsters, no rabbits, no lizards, no horses, just dogs. Well, there were a couple fish every now and then, but they were a--and I absolutely must say this, it's too tempting--short-lived obsession every time. No joke, once I tried to "show" my own goldfish a "trick" that my brother's goldfish could do. I scooped him out of the water, made a circle with my thumb and index finger above the opening of the bowl, and dropped him through the circle into the bowl. Ta-da! ...At least the first time. The second time I guess Fishy saw his chance to escape, but alas, flopped in the wrong direction, landing behind the (thankfully turned off) furnace. I couldn't reach with my stupid little arm, so I pretended nothing happened. I don't remember the outcome of that story, but I'm sure there was an interesting one. How the hell did I explain the missing fish?! Then again, my family is very good at coming up with bad explanations.

In any case, although I was never anti-cat, I was always a little suspicious of them. The few cats I was ever around were usually out of sight, only occasionally slinking into my line of vision. Otherwise they were porch-dwellers, sprawled out on decks, the railings, the chairs, or the steps. And of course, being mostly around dog-loving people I only ever heard about how all damn-cats (I swear it might as well have been hyphenated, because the words always went together) were anti-social, snooty and want nothing to do with people.

Then one day five years ago it was decided that I needed a companion for when The Hubby was at work. This was to be a whole new world for me. A litter box? What? So New Kitty is "welcomed" into the home by none other than me, home by myself, with no clue how to handle a damn-cat. I make sure damn-cat has food and water and toys and knows where the litter box is and how to use it. We're good. *Pat pat* kitty head, now I'm off to do whatever it was I was needing to do around the house. Problem? Damn-cat didn't get the memo about cats not caring about humans. This cat followed me around the house all damn day, mrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-owing at me. And since she was to become our "woe" kitty, with the most pitiful drawn-out mournful *woe* cry, she'd chase her mrrrr-ows with woes. She was desperate for love, and I was panicking. "No Kitty, you can't eat my food! You have your own!! OH GOOD GOD What is it you want from me???" So I went about awkwardly petting her and holding her until she calmed down. But as soon as I'd get up ("Jesus, Kitty, I gotta put my bowl up! Give me a break!") she'd be following me and mrrr-owing and woe-ing. Sheesh, even the dogs I'd had before weren't this high-maintenance.

We gradually became more comfortable with each other, and after a couple of days we settled on the name "Kiki" for our little woe-kitty. (Eventually she somehow ended up "Kiki Pants," and is now mostly just called "Pants.") After a little bit it was time for the big vet trip--getting her spayed and de-clawed. When she came back home after that, I sat on the futon we had in "her" room, holding her in my lap and bawling my eyes out. She looked so pitiful, and it was so heartbreaking for me to see such a spirited, affectionate kitty all droopy-eyed and mangled-looking. That's when I fell in love with her. I missed her personality. I just chilled with her for a while until she jumped off my lap. After that, we were besties. She's the first kitty I ever had, and she's awesome.

She went from tiny cute damn-cat...
To lover of heights.

To attacking from boxes. (We had to buy a second one of those after they tore one to pieces.)

To a lover of laps. And staring contests.

To a glorious fetcher. Check out that back claw action. She's a warrior down to her toes.
(...And down to her evil glare of victory.)

To a stealth attacker of feet. (With soft paws, of course. She's still a lady.)
To a lover of boxes and soulful gazes.

And she absolutely slays a nap on her favorite blanket.

She's a very thoughtful kitty.

Once she brought me a half-dead cricket when I was in bed, half-asleep. I think based on my reaction she understood that Mama is simply not able, or willing, to learn how to hunt and kill her own food. The half-dead thing has never been repeated. She has, however, gifted us with fully-dead mice, thoughtfully placed next to the bed or in the doorway, where we'd clearly be able to see she's earned her keep. Or that we'd better be on our toes, because she's a cold-blooded killer. Even if she gives us hugs (a paw on each side of our necks, head brushed along the side of our faces) and begs to be held and walked around the house so she can bat at the ceiling fan pull chains and peek out the windows. But she's such a bad-ass, I'd swear she actually catches the red dot of the laser pointer.

We have another cat, too... but Juggabutt's a whole 'nother story.


  1. I love it when cats can win over a non-cat-lover!  My mom and brother both are converts now and have cats.  I have always loved cats - they are full of it!!

  2. Oh, I know how sad it is to have your kitty declawed and spayed because I did that to my little Spunky Doodle and just like you, felt terrible. Fortunately, she perked up and got back to being her Spunky little self in a few days--boy was I happy! We have two cats and one dog.

    Here's the link to how we got our Manny Boy cat:

    Stopping by from Writers Workshop.

  3. I absolutely love them now, that's for sure! I'm always trying to "adopt" the strays in the neighborhood. They're just such hilarious animals, from the random scurrying around the house to the way they fake disinterest before pouncing on a toy.

  4. Haha! I LOVE that you have two cats named Pants and Juggabutt. BWA-HA! Such a great story. Our family always had damn-cats, too. Seems like everyone else's cats loved people, but ours never did. Glad you found a bestie in yours. 

  5. Me too! I think what I had experienced with other people's cats is what I was expecting from my own. Now I know that at least mine in particular are extremely loving with me and The Hubby, but can be kind of skittish around strangers. Well, Pants is, anyway. Juggabutt will harass the crap out of any visitors, demanding love! Ah, kitties. They're just not right in the head.

  6. So sweet...I've never been a cat person, either.  Dogs only.  It's not likely to change, due to allergies, but I can admit I sometimes sort of see the appeal of some felines.  

  7. They're great, but I have to admit they're not for everyone. I've always liked dogs, and I like playing with other people's dogs if we go visit somewhere, but I don't want to have dogs again. Cats seem to suit our lifestyle better. We're lazy bums. ;) Thanks for stopping by!