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  • Pinned to the mattress by a 2-ton feline

  • Help! I've been felined! And I can't get up!
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  • Help! I've been felined! And I can't get up!
    Seriously. How is it that a 10-pound pussface can morph herself into a 2-ton tabby?
    This is the question I ponder as Squiggy, once again, demands her rightful position on my chest.
    I am trying to rise and shine Saturday morning. But she isn't having it. Not a bit of it.
    Moving in from a pillow near my left shoulder, she'd already head-butted the iPad out of her way. Tromping a path across my person like it is her absolute right to tread where she will.
    A few circles later, as she does the baby elephant dance and elicits a few disgruntled "ooommphs!!" from me, I decide to move this process along.
    Her Highness offers up an offended glance from her grass-green eyes as I assist her in plopping her furry butt down on the area of my blue flannel jammies that covers my heart.
    "Seriously! You are a frickin' load," I say, pressing down on her back.
    "You're not exactly a bag of marshmallows — even if you are just as lumpy," she hisses back.
    I should know better than to get into these spitting contests with her. Cats always have the snappier comeback. They have no conscience.
    Occasional bickering aside, the green-eyed moggy and I are actually thick as thieves. She still retains a soupcon of gratitude that I rescued her from a frosty fate. And I appreciate the fact that she greets me at the door like my dearly departed, faithful, old pooch St. Twirley Jane — even if I know Squiggy's real angle is to herd me into filling her feed bowl as quickly as possible.
    "Hello, Puss. How was your day?" I ask, bending down to stroke her erect tail, as she twines around my legs.
    We head on into the kitchen to greet the parrots, Gaia and Goose. The feathered duo are calling out their "Welcome homes!" with their usual flair — wolf whistles, cat calls and the occasional "Whatchadoin' Bugbutt? Wanna kiss my toes?"
    Squiggy ignores the hello hoopla and hops up onto the kitchen table via the chair I always leave pulled out. She paces back and forth, trilling and taking swipes at my elbow as I move from fridge to counter to cages.
    "It's not your turn yet. Besides, you still have crunchies in your bowl," I remind her.
    She darts a scornful look at the little pellets and a reproachful one at me.
    "I'm sure they're poisonous," she meows, grabbing the fleshy part on the pad of my left hand and giving a warning nibble.
    "Get the chicken. And I may let you keep it," says she.
    "Excuse me, Madam, but even a cat should know not to bite the paw that feeds her," I remind her.
    Lately I've been noticing she's getting more and more demanding in her old age. And eccentric.
    Two nights ago, I locked her in the guest bedroom for her own safety. I was giving a couch away to a friend, which necessitated the front door being open for a considerable period of time. And I didn't want her darting out, getting lost, and giving me a heart attack. Again.
    Once the extraneous furniture was gone, I released Miss Pris and watched her creep out into the living room to suss out what had transpired during her unfortunate incarceration.
    I have no idea how the couch had managed to offend her. So I was unprepared for the display of jubilation that ensued.
    Ears sideways, eyes buggy and wild, tail lashing to and fro, the silly old puss spun several doughnuts as she raced across the carpet in fits and starts. Don't rat me out, but she reminded me of that gleeful piggy that "Wheeee's!" all over the insurance commercials.
    A few minutes later, the aged feline exhausts herself and climbs back up on my lap.
    Truth be told, that's fine with me. Stroking Squiggy's silky fur, listening to her rumbling purr, soothes my soul better than any substance known to pharmacology. And there are no dangerous side effects to Squiggy love.
    Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or sspecht@mailtribune.com.
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