Tuesday, February 4, 2020

More CAT Tales

Allow me to indulge is some wee cat tales, and also tails. This links to writing in a roundabout way, I promise.

All three of our cats are, well, cats. This they have in common. They have whiskers and pointy ears and fur and, yes, tails. But here is where they differ.

^Clara, the oldest, has never done a bad thing in her life. She never sharpens her claws on anything but the cardboard we provide for such purpose; never nudges anyone off their food bowl; never attacks the others, and has never met a person she doesn’t like. She does not assume you want her on your lap, so she looks to your invitation and will leave with the slightest sign you’ve had enough. She’s the best (and only, actually) real mouser, and has kept us rodent-free as fee for her care.
She is the cat you want if you need one working feline.

^Sokolov, our only male, was of feral stock. To this day, he only accepts five humans, us plus a friend. When I say, “accepts,” I mean he runs to greet us at the sound of our footsteps, the way a loving dog would. No other human will ever see him, as he zooms to hide long before they are at the door. Visitors have to believe me Sokolov exists, because no one gets as much as a glimpse of his black furry tail. He constantly challenges the others (and us) for our food, and proceeds to leave vomited hairballs everywhere. You’ll have to take my word that he’s more than worth all that trouble. Sokolov is the most intelligent and, at least towards us, the most affectionate.

^Our youngest, Nougat, is a senseless goof. She gets herself into spaces she can’t get out of, considers everything a batting toy, and talks all the time. She can hold a continuous conversation for half an hour, as long as you keep responding. Her sentences are as varied as they are entertaining. She prefers your company and play to a tasty morsel every time. Folks who think cats are just food motivated, haven’t met Nougat. “Food? What food? Play with me, I tell you. Meow-meow, I’m talking to you!”

This brings me to writing. Yes, they’re all cats, of the Felis Catus species. But they are individuals. A good reminder not to have generic characters when telling a story. 


Katie L. Carroll said...

Love your descriptions of all you tailed friends!

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Aha! Nice lead-in to the punch line. I agree that people don't realize that all cats are not alike. I have a very good friend in a village in Spain who at one time had up to 17 cats! (These were feral cats she captured, had neutered, and adopted.) They've dwindled down to eleven, now, but she would love this post. Every single one of her cats has a name, and I can assure you, each one has their own personality.

Evelyn said...

I want to meet all three of your feline friends.

Vijaya said...

I loved reading about your cats. Each one a unique creation. People don't realize we have cats because they are still terrified of everything. When the neighbors' kids take care of them, the only evidence that they know the cats exist is because they eat and poop!

Mirka Breen said...

two of them would gladly meet you, Ev. Mr. Sokolov would likely hide the whole time, even if you stay a week.

We are: Clamco said...

I love this post! Thank you for introducing us to your fur family. They are each so unique and also beautiful. Please know that I'm typing this response with only my left hand as the other arm is cradling my kitten Manny who is all snuggled in my lap and purring loudly. lol He is quite a character!

Janie Junebug said...

They are beautiful cats and your reminder about characters is excellent.


Barbara Etlin said...

Thanks for this reminder, Mirka. I have a cat character in my WIP and I must remember to give him some personality!

You aren't a Star Trek fan, if I remember correctly. But I think you would enjoy the poem Data wrote about his cat, Spot. Data is an android who, like Pinocchio, wishes he were human. In this poem, "Ode to Spot," he is striving to write creatively...and failing rather spectacularly.


Mirka Breen said...

Ha-Ha Barbra, I think you have to be a Trekkie to appreciate this poem.