by Doug Hawley
Portland OR USA when I was a child our cats were
all outside cats and being on a fairly busy
street and not being too smart, they usually died
from being hit by cars. My unpleasant job
was burying one, but not deep enough as my father
found out when plowing.
Only two of
the early cats, Sofia Hergenmergen (from the
Steve Canyon comic strip) and Mop Cat stick in my
mind. Sofia was a calico, who I believe gave
birth while we had her (we werent that good
at spaying then). She was petite and walked like
rabbit with a little hop in her step. Mop
cat resembled a black mop and was so cool.
He trained me so he would lie on his back on my
outstretched arm. Try that with your cat. He
was also featured in a dream that I had. The
details are sealed for opening after my death.
After I left
home and eventually got married and a house, my
sister-in-law gave us her cat called Frodo (Lord
of the Rings). I was Bored Of The Rings (Harvard
Lampoon, somewhat amusing), so he was changed to
Batface based on his big ears and prominent
canines. Best cat ever, except for being a bad
lover and fighter. After repeated injuries
to his tail when he ran from fights, we had him
neutered. We had received him in Denver, where he
would chase the nine oclock moths, and
bring them in as if they were electric bowties.
His other trick was to escape from the basement
by wedging himself between two metal surfaces and
using them to climb vertically to the next floor.
with us through two moves in LA and a couple of
moves in Marin. Through the whole thing, he was
an excellent companion. He not only liked us,
but would hang out with people who walked in
front of our house.
involved in a hallucinatory moment for me.
I saw two of him at his food bowl one day. After
much gawping, I discovered that one of him was
skinnier and in fact an interloper from another
there we got another sister-in-law cat Jaws, the
evil eponymous cat of Cat Of Hanley https://literallystories2014.com/2016/12/08/cat-of-hanley-by-doug-hawley/#more-8612.
We tried to
keep Batface indoors at night for his own good in
Corte Madera CA, but one night I let him out when
I wasnt thinking straight. He came home
that night injured and died shortly thereafter. I
that we should get a couple of cats next so that
they would have company. Brother Boots and sister
Pooch (editor though that Puss was too risqué)
was the boss. She was not happy when Boots
tried to mount her after she had been spayed. After
that she ruled the litter box (he tried to bury
his Tootsie Rolls as deep as he could) and laps (if
she was there first he would stay away, if he was
there first she chased him away).
One morning we
heard a thud while we were in bed. Boots had
either died and fallen or fallen and died. Pooch
didnt seem upset.
think based on Redenbacher), an orange cat,
started to flop in front of us after his people
died as we walked. He was such a pleaser,
that we didnt mind when he moved to a house
across the street. Word on the street was
that he was always looking for his main chance. If
our information is correct, he finally died in
his mid-twenties. His new people said that he
meowed once and went.
Pooch made it
to twenty and a half. Towards the end we
were administering regular subcutaneous fluids. Letting
go was hard.
We got Harriet,
the hairy pet, indirectly from a fellow hiker. She
was old when we got her and didnt last too
long, but while she was around, she was very
mellow. Unlike most cats, carrying her
upstairs didnt bother her at all. Only
food got her excited. She slept in the opposite
direction as me at night with my hand on her
Our last is
Kitzhaber, formerly called Honey by his late
owner, because she couldnt remember his
name. He is now named after a failed Oregon
governor. His main activities are dumping,
crying for food and lying about wanting you to
rub his belly. He gets credit for renaming
himself Fireball in the fiction Cats
Religion https://prolificpress.com/bookstore/dual-coast-magazine-c-6/dual-coast-magazine-issue-3-p-167.html and reinforcing a life lesson
by piecing my flesh when I displease him.
cats are split between a neighbor and us. After
years of feeding them, they still dont
trust us. All are gray, but different sizes,
and hang out together, but dont get close