Proud Moments in Adulthood: The Cat Baby, Part I
It took us three months to decide not to get a kitten. Our landlords (if you are reading this, our sink is clogged) forbid pets unless you fork over a $500 deposit. Plus Becky didn’t know if she liked cats–could she trust them? Would it scratch her eyes out during the night? I assured her this was most unlikely, if anything the cat would go for the neck. So we weren’t getting a cat and then Noah, Becky’s boyfriend, moved in.
We figured we were already breaking our lease, so why not break it again? Plus our lease expired on July 15th, and although we intend to continue paying rent, doesn’t this make us lawless squatters? I would call our property manager for some clarification, but everyone in that office seems to know one thing, and that one thing is never what you need to know, so they pass you around the office until eventually you hang up. This seems an inefficient way of getting people off the phone.
I could also consult our lease, but it seems to have disappeared. For a while Becky thought it might be in the trunk of her car. It was not, which was both reassuring and upsetting—on the one hand Becky isn’t using her trunk as a filing cabinet, but on the other hand, we don’t have a copy of our lease. Oh and it costs money to get another copy (the fifth “property manager” I talked to imparted this singular jewel of wisdom, the only one in his possession).
In the above paragraphs, I have indulged several tangential thoughts, for which I deeply apologize. I seem to be using a very adult, formal voice in this post. Perhaps I am compensating for the obvious immaturity demonstrated by my story. Anyway, Noah wanted a cat, so one Saturday morning we drove to the parking lot of his work, where a feral cat had recently given birth to kittens.
We tried to think through this whole process of catching a feral cat, but none of us could decide on the proper way to go about things, so we decided to plan nothing. I crouched behind a dumpster, that smelled like human piss, for an hour, coaxing the world’s most adorable black kitten with tuna fish. He wasn’t too impressed by my offering, so I started to tempt him with a leaf, hoping he felt like playing. He did.
I dispatched Becky and Noah to buy a cat carrier (at least we realized that was necessary). When they came back, I had my hand right near the kitten, ready to pounce. So I did. Of course, I didn’t realize the cat carrier needed to be assembled. Little baby black kitten fought for his life. Becky retreated to the car. Noah assembled the carrier like a mad man and I bled profusely.
We got him in the carrier. We were probably as traumatized as the kitten. He may have feared for his life, but we were all afraid we had permanently damaged him psychologically. Our neuroses whirred to a nice speed, and all of us experienced a taste of parenthood.
I tell you, those flour babies in elementary school do not come near to a kitten. Well, also in elementary school, I hadn’t had enough therapy to identify the damage being done to me by my parents. Now of course, I knew we could royally F things up for this little feline.
To Be Continued……