It occurs to me I never mentioned that Lola, my lovable but not-all-there kitty, has a sister named Emmy. Emmy is her polar opposite: moody, intelligent, and horribly unfriendly. I remember when I adopted them at the Kitten Rescue. Lola sat there like a tiny furry beached whale, staring off into space, and Emmy was hunched in the corner of her cage scowling at everyone that walked by. I imagined that if Emmy was a human, she'd have a tattered journal full of Morrissey-esque poetry.
I had no idea what I was in for when I picked them out. It would be easy if kittens could speak, so they could tell you what kind of terrible cats they'll grow up to be. I'm sure it wouldn't have deterred me from taking them home and loving them to friggin' pieces, but it would certainly make things easier to have that bit of foresight.
As they got older, their distinctive personalities differed more and more. Lola grew sweeter and dumber, like a feline version of Britney Spears, and Emmy got meaner and more vicious. Tossing an empty box on the floor illustrates their personalities perfectly.
Lola will become one with the box.
Emmy will destroy it.
Lola is an ideal example of the timeless "Cats Don't Care" adage. Whether she's simply unfettered by external stimuli, or just too dumb to realize what's going on, she isn't bothered by much.
Emmy, on the other hand, seldom lets anyone get near her.
It's a rare occurance when Emmy lets someone pet her, and it's always on her own terms. I might be doing some work on the couch, and she'll suddenly appear next to me looking disgruntled, but she'll situate herself by my side reluctantly as if to say, "You have 20 seconds of petting time. Savor it."
The pleasantries never last, however.
And yet, I can't help but love them both, awful as they are.
I've mentioned that Lola and Emmy now live at home with my mom, but I see them a couple times a year when I visit. For a few hours, they always act like they're going to be mad at me for staying away for so long. Lola hides, and Emmy does that thing cats do where they race from room to room, tearing around corners at Mach 5 speed.
Once they realize I'm sticking around for a while, the cats do a 180 and become overly friendly. At that point, they take turns gnawing on my feet and sleeping on my face. And I do mean on my face. It's the only time Emmy willingly shows affection, and I suspect it's just because she delights in keeping me awake at night. Lola is worse, though, because she's so much larger. I'm in constant danger of suffocating under the weight of Jabba the Cat.
On the primo night I'm left alone to sleep peacefully, danger is no less present. Emmy regards the humans in her house as practice prey, and a dozing person proves an easy target.
Moments later I'll feel claws in my back and awaken to Emmy tearing out of the room. If cats could laugh, I'm sure Emmy would be snickering to herself as she ran away.
My family celebrates Christmas in May, since we all despise travelling in the Winter. As such, I was home a couple weeks ago with presents in tow, but I made the mistake of waiting until I arrived at the house to wrap all the gifts I'd purchased. I took care of several boxes, then took a break to eat a snack. A few grapes, or a single potato chip––something of that sort. Swimsuit season is just around the corner, after all.
When I returned, all my hard work had been for naught.
Frozen in place and wide eyed, the furry little jerks had been caught red handed. After a few silent moments they booked it in opposite directions, and I set about rewrapping everything, cursing them quietly under my breath.
Pet ownership is a lot like being a parent, except your child never grows up past age 2, they eat birds, and they poop in boxes. Like kids, you can't strangle your pets, even when you want to. On the upside, cats are fuzzier than children, which almost single handedly makes up for all the hassle.
However, fuzzy kitty bellies only exist to mask the danger of razor sharp kitty talons.
Cats are bitches sometimes. And I love mine.