by Janet Yung
The cat has
laid claim to the newly assembled office chair,
refusing to give an inch once shes parked
herself on its padded surface upon completion of
her morning meal and toilet.
I supposed to sit? Allen is standing in the
doorway to the spare room carved out as his
workplace. Sunshine is streaming through the
window overlooking the backyard, the sill one of
the cats favorite spots to snooze on chilly
winter days, soaking up the warmth of the sun,
waiting for the occasional squirrel to peek
inside or bird to sail by, enroute to a branch on
the ash tree. Favorite until the contents of the
box were emptied and spread out on the floor,
Allen reading the instructions and Ginger
watching intently as the piece came to life.
you cant move her, Susan says,
feeling smug while he ponders the dilemma. Allen,
sensitive to Gingers needs, has had little
sympathy with Susan when the cat has scrambled
across the table in the middle of fixing dinner
or munched on a fern as if the houseplant was
there solely for her benefit, only to cough up
bits of wholly swallowed fronds.
Gingers defense, Allen is always there to
scoop up the calico, nuzzle her and point out the
cat has overcome much adversity in her short life.
Discovered abandoned along a major thoroughfare,
undernourished and suffering from a severe case
of ear mites, the couple brought her into their
house and lives late one fall where she quickly
made herself at home.
need that chair, Allen tells Susan while
they watch Ginger do a couple of turns before
finally settling in comfortably. And,
she has her bed. The bed, purchased by
Allen after Gingers brief stay in the
animal hospital for minor surgery, sits forlornly
in the corner, suffering from neglect.
could share the chair, Susan suggests.
dont think so, Allen says with
resolve and, walking softly towards the chair,
picks up Ginger. Here, precious,
Allen deposits her gently on the beds thick
cushion covered with faux fur and coos, why
dont you sleep in your bed?
It takes a
fraction of a second for Ginger to realize
shes been usurped from her new, special
place and before Allen can settle back into it,
Ginger has reclaimed her spot.
Allen is looking at the cat who goes through all
the previous maneuvers in preparing for her nap.
Before she gets too comfortable, Allen repeats
the process of relocating Ginger. Squatting to
take possession of his chair, the sound of claws
sinking into upholstery heralds Gingers
return as she scrambles up the back, plopping on
the seat in unison with Allen.
could try again, Susan offers and, for a
second, Allen considers that possibility.
snuggles against the back as Allen teeters on the
edge trying to adjust to the seating arrangement.
I give up, he surrenders.
Patting him on
the shoulder, Susan smiles, Sharing is good.