Larry, the little black cat bent on stealing your soul, is not shy about expressing his desires. They are fairly simple. He is quite impatient when I seem distracted from my purpose in life: meeting demands he issues in a variety of cartoon voices. First thing every morning, his enthusiasm is positively Le Peu.
Larry: At last, we are together! You are awake, and I shall woo you! Come with me to the Casbah.
Tata: How about the food bowl?
Larry: You see? It is as if we are one!
Ten minutes later, it’s a different story.
Larry: Morning, Sam.
Tata: Morning, Ralph.
At this point, I’m warming up on my yoga mat. It’s dark out and I don’t turn on any lights. I might wake up and realize I’m exercising and we can’t have that. No, I have to work out before I can talk me out of it so I have to be half-asleep. Sometimes this means I suddenly stop balancing and dozing to fend off an irate pussycat yelping like baby Stewie from Family Guy.
Larry: Vexing trollop! You have two hands and neither is petting me!
Tata: If I don’t fight impending menopause you’re going to end up a Barbie rug!
Larry: Perhaps my laser rifle will convince you to obey me. Blast! No opposable thumb. Prepare to feel my wrath!
Tata: You bit me!
Larry: I bit you yesterday, too. Did you learn?
Tata: Furball! Your days are numbered!
While I’m in the shower, he’s Dudley Dooright. As I get dressed, he’s Sylvester. After I put my shoes on, he makes a big show of losing interest in me completely.
Tata: ‘Bye, Larry.
Larry: ‘Bye…whoever you are.
Over a week ago, I dropped my lone potholder behind the stove. It took a few days to realize that if I leaned over the back and hooked the loop on my umbrella handle the potholder could be washed and hung up again. So I did. I didn’t feel especially smart but I did feel less stupid. In the meantime, Georg mailed two giant potholders she sewed herself. I opened the package and skipped around the new apartment.
The packages say not to eat them so I don’t. With Georg, you never know. Georg’s talents extend far beyond those of most mortals. During any visit to her house, I will find at least five things she does effortlessly that I couldn’t master after a lengthy apprenticeship.
Tata: Whatcha doin’?
Georg: Making croquembuche in the shape of Frank Zappa.
Tata: I hope that’s a pastry bag, young lady!
Georg: Later, I’ll spin straw into gold for the International Ladies’ Garment Workers Union.
Tata: Does that…come with dental?
Larry has been limping since the rain started. Georg’s gimpy cat has a heating pad. Taking my cue, I moved a cat pillow over to the radiator last night and Larry adopted it right away. Maybe he’ll be more Pepe and less of a pill.