a little creepy


We decided it was time to get a new cat.

Taylor has seemed quite depressed and we found ourselves thinking of Lillith often. We went down to the animal shelter Saturday afternoon. I walked in and was looking at one of the cats when an arm popped out from a cage and grabbed my sleeve. Lillith’s arm. This cat looked just like Lillith, but young and healthy. The eyes were a different color. But it was a beautiful Russian Blue, just like Lillith.

I picked the kitty up and my heart started aching. Meanwhile, Eric had found a kitty he was getting fond of. Cal is a tabby cat with a stubbed tail from some sort of accident. I looked at him and he wheezed and then sneezed. It was clear he had an upper respiratory infection, a common illness caught in a shelter. It was the same type of thing that Lillith caught that eventually killed her.

So here I am standing between two cats: one that looks like my recently departed kitty, and one that is sick and maimed and is the soul of my recently departed kitty.

I knew my friends would be freaked out if we got the Russian Blue. I could hear them now: “They went out and bought the same cat. I mean, that’s a little creepy, don’t you think?” Even if we were cool with it, I knew that other people would think we were freaks. When Eric was holding the cat, it even looked like her in his arms. It was a bit much.

The decision got easier when we realized that the Russian Blue was so pretty that everyone that walked into the shelter stopped to pet him. There was no doubt that he was going to find a home. Cal on the other hand had already been in the shelter for almost a month. And he was weak and sick. And Eric was in love.

We put in the application. In Austin you apply to adopt animals, and you give references. They call your landlord, they call your vet. They make sure your other pets are healthy and find out how you treat animals. If all of those things clear, then you can take the animal home. Because Cal is sick they have him on some sort of early flight out and we just heard this afternoon that we can pick him up after work today. That’s much faster than most people hear. So fast, in fact, we didn’t really get a chance to buy and clean. Eric went out and bought some toys and litter and food. We’ll have to keep him in a separate room for a few days until he’s not sick anymore. And then I’m not sure what to do. I don’t know how to get him and Taylor to be friends. We picked Cal because he was already neutered, declawed, and was about the same size as Taylor. He plays like Taylor does. The personality profile says he gets along with other cats. The person gave him up because he had to move. Cal appears to have belonged to some sort of bachelor.

I’m going to be surrounded in boys.

I’m doing a little experiment right now. I’m seeing how long I can go without a cigarette. I’m not calling it “Quitting,” as I don’t want to set myself up for failure. Plus if I make it some sort of test or game I think I’ll do better. But I think if I have a hard time not smoking, I’m going to try that weaning thing so many of you told me about when I tried quitting back in February.

So, I’m sort of stupid today. I feel stupid. My brain isn’t working as fast as it usually does and I feel like I’m forgetting something. So, in… in… some sort of word that means I’m substituting something so that you don’t feel disappointed about my lack of brain power… I offer you Diane’s account of meeting me in Austin, and the first of my weekly articles for the Austin-American Statesman.

And go see Fight Club. I am Jack’s irrational fear of choosing the wrong cat.

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