He was a shivering, spitting little puff ball when Mike discovered him. A tiny kitten — white with black and gray spots — had materialized out of nowhere on our back deck. He was just getting into the cute kittenhood stage. Mike picked him up, brought him inside, and set him on the floor, where the little stinker commenced to talk nasty, showing us — in his little bitty body language — that he was ready to wreak some serious harm and mayhem upon our persons if we dared touch him again.
It wasn’t long before he realized we weren’t going to rend him limb from limb and snack on his tiny little bones. He decided he liked the safe, warm indoors, canned cat food, and playing stalking games – with kitty and human taking turns being the stalker. He got better and better at practicing his Ninja moves, lying in wait, and ambushing. Nobody was safe. From the beginning he loved hit and run, bouncing up to our feet, then sidling back and galloping across the hardwood floors with his tail as straight up as a mast pole. For a little fellow, he sounded like a whole herd of wild horses
We let him out during the day because he’s still a nursing baby. — Yeah. That mama cat snuck one by us. — But we bring him in when the sun goes down. He sits on the couch with us, when he’s in the mood to sit. But most of the time he’s nibbling on our fingers or toes, attacking our slippers or shoes, or climbing up to look in our eyes and mouths to see if we’re still breathing, or determine what we had for supper.
But mostly he likes the sound Mike’s house shoes make when he scuffs them over the floor. They make this deliciously provocative shushing noise that Kitty cannot resist. But when that sibilant sound comes straight at him, he dives under the couch, then peeks out to see if it’s safe to come out again. And let’s not even talk about his discovery of the kitchen curtains.
When one of us gets up to go to the kitchen, he climbs up the back of the couch and peers over to see what we’re doing. If we get out of his sight, he cries. If I dare work on my cryptogram puzzles in his presence, he makes sure to walk between me and the book, or he stands on it and sniffs it, wondering what the attraction is. It doesn’t smell like food. And it just lies there while I scratch on it with a semi-interesting stick. Have you ever tried to write while a kitten is constantly trying to nibble on the eraser? Hard to do, let me tell you.
You should have seen him with our granddaughter Montana. It was mutual love at first sight. It was early morning and he and Montana bonded before breakfast. A twelve-year-old knows just how to get a kitten to play. And fall leaves make the best shushing sound.
Okay. I’ll admit it. We’ve got it bad. We’ve never been able to resist a Mark Twain kitten. The feline equivalent of a charming but hellacious entity that’s a cross somewhere between Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn, with just a smattering of Hellboy to spice him up. Just this morning I made a run to the hamburger joint for biscuits, juice, and coffee. Mike came out to help me bring them in. We were just outside the door when we heard a loud, ominous thump inside. Uh-oh. Inside, we found my heavy, cut-glass vase knocked over. The headful of tasteful floral arrangement that usually graced its elegance now lay stem up in an ignominious position. We tried to scold. Little puss just looked at us in wide-eyed innocence, then went back to batting the single silken leaf he’d managed to separate from the display. Our scolding was either studiously ignored, or it went right over his delicate little head.
We still haven’t found a suitable name for him. Almost all our outdoor cats have similar markings, and we had already named one “Spot”. So far we’ve called him “Rapscallion”, “Scampus” — you know, like Scamp-puss. Let’s seeee . . . what else. He has all kinds of little quirks, but usually a cat will “tell” you his name at some point. It becomes obvious. This one is still trying out this thing called personality, and he’s hitting it hard from every angle. So maybe we’ll just wait a while. Maybe Scampus will be the name that sticks. Or not. He’s too cute and innocent looking to be called “Wicked”, though he likes to think he’s big and bad. But every so often he just quietly settles in beside us, or on us. Sometimes he faces the TV and looks for all the world like he’s watching it with us. Then other times he goes so totally asleep his whole body unwinds into absolute and total relaxation. Wish I could do that.
Anyway, I’ve got the cutest pictures and even some video. I can share the pictures right now, but Mike will have to show me how to do video. Remember I told you we got this new Nikon? Mike and I haven’t had much experience with video and holding the camera just so, and keeping up with a constantly fast-moving target. I even turned it sideways once like it was a still shot. Boy! That didn’t work. But it is funny. So just enjoy the cute-kitten pictures and be glad your possessions are safe. Ciao for now. Ho-ho. Or maybe Cat Chow for now, huh? And now from little Kitty. Night night. Sleep tight. ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////