JacJac is at a Bengal rescue outside Chicago. He’s three years old and very athletic. A friend here would love to adopt him, and asked me if there was any chance at all I could bring him back with me when I go to Chicago mid-month.
This is the sort of arduous caper others underwent for Jacques and me—rescuing an orphaned kitten on a Korean mountainside, feeding him protein powder with an eyedropper in a karate dojo, and entrusting him to a young Canadian English teacher who took it upon herself to bring him all the way back from Seoul to Kingston, Ontario on the plane—truly heroic. (We drove from New York to Kingston and picked him up.) I can feel Jacques glowering at me, willing me to pay it forward. Don’t think the JacJac fantasy mission didn’t cross my mind even before I was asked.
It’s all but impossible. The cat is not in Chicago but in Indiana, and I don’t have a car. My time belongs to my mom, who, if she knew I was even contemplating such a quixotic ordeal, would pitch a fit. I’m a stranger to JacJac and I don’t know if he’s ever traveled before; he could be screaming inconsolably the whole way. He looks pretty rangy and I don’t know if he’d fit into a carrier under the seat; I won’t put an animal in the cargo compartment. The fosterers would pretty much have to meet me at the airport with cat in carrier, presuming I could even reserve a pet space this late.
Nope. My friend will have to find his cat here. If you, by any chance, are in the Midwest, and have a home to offer this beautiful miniature tiger . . . he could be yours.
(There was a time when Jacques and I would totally have done it. We’d have driven to Chicago and back if that’s what it took. And then, like the surrogate mother who changes her mind, we’d probably have refused to hand him over.)
I lost my mother in 2008 and she left me Zarathustra. I got horrible depression after her death and for two years I was unable to do something creative . . . I’ve had cats before and included them in my work, like playing in theatre shows and I’ve made costumes for them. But I thought, ‘What can I do with Zarathustra, because my mother spoilt him and he’s so fat’.“
The explosion of creativity that followed is truly prodigious: while the sampling above is wonderful, you ain’t seen nothin’ till you’ve gone to the artist’s website. Zarathustra is indeed a bountiful Muse. Merchandise and prints will be available soon and I will shamelessly promote them to atone for my unauthorized use of my favorite of the images as a banner for Purr View.
Mea culpa: I have cast this site adrift, sucked into the vacuous energy sink of Facebook. I have long aspired to make Purr View a prominence from which to view all the wonderful cat stuff that parades by—those videos and photos and cartoons that are so lamentably ephemeral on FB. I have allowed myself to be deterred by the minimal amount of time and effort that would take. Shame on me! No more! Zarathustra has electrified me. I’ll begin today to do some remedial posting from my FB archives.
(As I am experimenting with less-to-no Facebook, my cat observations and photos, including Sleep of the Day, will henceforth appear and accumulate here. While fewer people will see them, anyone who strays by here will be able to browse more of them. They will make a more obscure, but also more concentrated and lasting, record of my feline life.)
When you were a child, wasn’t the changing of seasons a grand shifting of the scenery? As in a theatre with four acts, you could almost hear the grinding of the gears deep under the stage and the rumbling of the sets as the old one was withdrawn into the wings for another year and the new one slid into place and was unveiled.
It’s still a big deal for cats! Because we were in Florida last winter and spring, Flighty reacted to the cold entering the window (yes, cold!) last night as if it was an invading animal of a strange species — a breeze-weasel, maybe? A breezel. When it touched her nose she startled back, went all low-slung, and advanced her head slowly, in caution-investigation mode, ready to bounce back at the slightest touch. If I had put a hand on her back just then she would have shot three feet into the air. (Only three. She’s fat.)
Now she’s begun to sneeze, and that’s weirding her out too: “Hey, what’s with my nose?!” She gave it a thorough washing. Just like all the people who are suddenly getting colds, the cats are vulnerable when the seasons change. In addition to sniffles, they often get a gut virus that J and I used to call “the fall disease.” They remind me what a big deal it really is. There are many layers to it: newness, beauty, and, deeper down, threat. All of life alerts and salutes this signal with mortal respect.