The house looked empty. There wasn’t a car in the driveway. No stirring. Taggert decided it was perfect. He’d do a run inside. Steal what he could take. Then he’d be out the door. And he’d do it in no time. It was still morning and everybody on the street seemed to have taken off for work. Taggert liked that. It made housebreaking easy peasy.
Little did Taggert know he was being watched. From the basement. Her name was Puddin’ and she was the house owner’s black panther. Mostly she was tame. The family had had her since she was a pup. I mean, kitten or cub or some such thing.
Puddin’ was harmless unless you want to call scuffling in the living room harmless. The family had declawed her so she wouldn’t scratch up the furniture. Now Puddin’ loved the family. She considered herself part of the family. So when she heard the back window open she just figured it was the man of the house playing a game. Puddin’ loved games.
When the family was gone, she had the run of the house. Every room was her castle. She ran into the bedroom. She saw a man coming through the window. He didn’t look like the man of the house. He didn’t smell like the man of the house. He was much shorter. Puddin’ figured it was a friend of the owners. So she hurried over just as Taggert was stepping down on the floor. She went to hug the Taggert and lick him on the back of the neck.
Taggert turned his head and saw the large black cat opening her mouth. He thought she was going to eat him.
Now Taggert’s heart was as healthy as a horse. But when you’ve got a grown black panther hugging you and trying to lick you, your heart just won’t hold out. And Taggert’s didn’t hold out.
Several hours later Rush and Laura came home. Rush headed to the bedroom. Over by the window, he saw Puddin’ licking a man’s face, trying to wake him from his eternal sleep.
My, my, what a nice sunny day. I would like to repeat that. What a nice sunny day. Wish all days were this sunny and nice. Of course, rainy days are nice too. It’s those cold, cold, and I’m talking cold here, cold days of winter that aren’t so nice. That’s why we save up our nuts and other stuff and put them away for winter. So we don’t have to go outside. But a day like this. It’s really nice. Mrs. Squirrel and I got up early this morning. We looked out at the world in all its glory and we said, “It’s going to be a nice day.” And here it is. Nice.
Cows. Cattle. What’s that all about? They come in for their feeding, then they go back out to the pasture. That’s a cow for you. Pretty soon they’re hanging out with a bull. What happens next ain’t a lot of bull.
Guess that’s why the bulls in the rodeo and the bullring are mad. They’re lifelong bachelors. They don’t get to hang out a lot with cows. It’s a lonely life for a bull who has to fight a matador and chase around with a cowboy on his back. Just one date is all the fellow asks. Just one date. He’ll be a happy fellow. At least, for a day or so. And that is all any bull can ask.
Like “A Bob Crachit Christmas”, I posted this one back in December, 2013. Even though Christmas has passed, I thought this would be a nice reminder. Hope you enjoy as much as I did writing it.
Three cats under the Christmas tree
Buster, Sister, Mama Peaches
All purring their yuletide carols
On this the night before Christmas.
They’ve kneaded their joy, now they rest
Curled up next to tinsel and snow,
Dreaming their dreams of Santa Paws
Meowing his jolly ho-ho-ho,
Hoping for some kitty-katnip
And a ball of yarn for their play.
Maybe a mouse or even two.
They dream and sleep this night away
But soon will come the Christmas morn
And all will be right with these three
For they will wake with a good stretch
And a big yawn under that tree
After a game of give-and-take.
They’ll hurry for their bowls of food
And munch and crunch and lick their paws
Clean and they’ll be in the best of moods.
Then they’re off for the Big Outside.
But before they rush out they take
One last turn ‘round the Christmas tree
Just so the three can celebrate
How long long ago a Babe
In a manger lay in the cold
Without a blanket or cover,
And no more than a few hours old,
When one scrawny and feral cat
Crawled in and curled about the Child
And kept the Baby warm that night.
Let Him sleep with a sweet, sweet smile.
The morning came, the sun did rise
Up east and warmed the Child below
While the cat slinked away, no more
To be seen but all the cats know:
How that Cat gave all that he had
Enough to keep away the freeze.
So now in heaven there’s a Cat
That never has to scratch for fleas.
As our three cats go out to roam
This Christmas day they take delight.
It was one of them, some Unknown
Company to Jesus that night.
You don’t have a cat. Lucky you. This is what you have to put up with if you do.
“What are you doing with that towel?” I ask.
Little Bear is the cat who lives at our house. She’s sitting on a white towel. “Who do you think you are? Get out of my face,” L B says to me. She will be upset if I say she’s my cat. That’s nonsense as far as she is concerned. “Nobody owns me,” she says, “and don’t you forget it.” Ssssh, don’t tell her I said this. She’s my cat whether she likes it or not.
“Look we need to talk,” I say to L B.
“Talk, talk, talk, that’s all you do.”
“That towel is mine.”
“No big deal. Let’s just say that I’m borrowing it for a while.”
“It was nice and clean. Now you made it dirty.”
“Yes. What of it.” That is not a question. It’s a challenge. Then she gives me that face. You cat people know what face I’m talking about. That face that says she’s smarter than me and I had better watch out.
I don’t want to get in any deeper. I’ve been there before and let’s just say it isn’t pleasant. I leave her be, knowing I had better mind my p’s-and-q’s, or I will be in trouble.
Non-cat owners, see what I mean. Uh-oh, I got to go. Here she comes and she’ll be reading this. She’s a speed reader too.