I remember giving the guy a dumb look. I mean, what does getting all of your runaway marbles back into the box, in order, have to do with causing felines pain? But I didn’t say anything out loud. No, picking apart someone’s strained metaphor, and in public, can set the guy’s emotional development back ten years. I know this well, having seen my own share of blank stares.
Anyway, I thought of this ‘duh’ moment while composing my Terms of Service Form for prospective stray cats. Yeah, I made fifty copies. Ever since I transformed 10 acres of junkyard into an organic Garden of Eden, new cats have arrived here daily, eyeing up the opportunities for Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of a warm place to poop.
Now I don’t have to remind anyone that there is a wide range of feline behavior patterns, ranging from ‘I want to have your kittens, gorgeous!’ all the way down to ‘Shoot you on sight’.
So I thought that if I’d create a tactful Sign-up sheet, it might spare me rude surprises, and also hard feelings among the Great Furry Unwashed. Here’s the current version:
Ok, like with most bureaucratic documents, the bad apples rush to find a way to cheat. Some cats brazenly lie about relevant details, a minority albeit, but enough to force me to ‘take measures’. Yes, like ‘how large should a cat-trap be?‘ I made mine 55 X 65 cm. Roomy enough for the trip ‘out-a-heah’. And yesterday I ‘relocated’ my first incorrigible criminal. His sins were as follows:
1) Makes no attempt to demonstrate friendliness whatsoever
2) Runs into the house the second I open the door, then proceeds to hide in the cavernous interior, waiting until after I have to leave to eat anything, everything, on any shelf, and destroying any semblance or order in the process.
3) Totally takes over the cat-dish from civilized specimens, gobbles food in a drunken frenzy, then turns around and pukes it all up. (Must have read too many of Xanga Top-100’s lower ranks, the eating-disorder crowd)
4) Chases chickens, just to see them cry.
5) Always digs poop-holes where they destroy as many newly-transplanted seedlingsas possible
6) Somehow causes the rest of the cats to adopt his evil behavior. His success in this regard was astonishing, speedy, and dramatic.
A cat of this evil bent needs to be shown the door pronto. It took me about four hours to build the basic cage/trap, but then I wracked my brains trying to invent a successful triggering mechanism.
(The cat needs to be happily eating the bait, in roughly the center of the collapsing roof). But then all of a sudden it dawned on me that I need only to attach a string to the bamboo spreader and wait for the criminal cat, then pull the cord! The only problem, of course, is first putting all my innocent cats into some temporary constrained place. Like, in the house. And here’s the rub: Trying to herd cats into the house is kinda like gathering up a bunch of runaway marbles….
Wait a minute! Didn’t someone say that on the other side of the record?
For the Record: The demon-spawn is now, as we speak, ‘somewhere over the rainbow’. Hope I never see him again. I stare at his fraudulent TOS form and ask myself, ‘How could I have been so deceived?’