zorkian: Icon full of binary ones and zeros in no pattern. (Default)
For free: one cat, well cooked.

Okay, so I haven't really cooked Mr. The Chairman (a beautiful male Siamese), but I almost did last night. For you see, last night I moved him from the apartment to his new home in the house. He doesn't deal well with changes in environment, and last night was particularly hard for him.

And me.

The evening began with moving him. The house and apartment are only four miles apart, but he spent the whole time yelling so loudly that I got some strange looks from other cars. Fun fact: Siamese cats (cats in general?) in distress don't really sound like cats, they sound like crying babies. "I swear, I'm not abusing my kid here..."

Eventually we made it to the house. He didn't want to come out of the crate at first. He had turned himself around and didn't realize I had opened it. Distress lowers his apparent IQ, as well! Great. I didn't feel too much like sticking my hands in to pull him out (my IQ was thankfully intact) but I managed to coax him out eventually.

Finally he came out, but he looked at me with a face full of utter disgust and loathing. He was judging me. For doing this to him. A crate, a car, and now: an unfamiliar place with strange smells and, worst of all, no furniture. Nowhere to hide. I had betrayed him and he was, at this very moment, dying inside -- all thanks to me. His disgust was very comprehensive.

He continued to meow as he started exploring the house. And thus did I discover tactical error #1: I left the door to the garage open. He realized that strange room was entirely full of familiar furniture and he quickly disappeared into the pile. He would have stayed there had I not started pouring food on the floor to make a racket. Eventually, something like an hour later, he came out and I shut the door.

While he was exploring the rest of the house, I prepared bowls of food and water, the litter box, and everything a cat should need in his first night in the new house. Then I got ready for bed, working to the accompaniment of his somewhat quieter meowing.

I turned out the lights and went to bed, wishing him a good night.

My night of horror had just begun.

For the next seven hours, he woke me every hour by coming up to my head and meowing -- I slept on a mattress on the ground in my office. He wouldn't stop until I would pet him for a few minutes, then try to convince him to leave. Sometimes he would insist I comfort his poor, lost soul for a bit longer, but he usually was decent about letting me go.

Sometime early in the night, he decided to start jumping up on the piles of stuff in the office. He knocked one over and the crash woke me up. "Cat!" I yelled -- I'm always at my most verbose in the middle of the night -- and he ran out of the room. I went back to sleep.

At some other points, he woke me with bangs from the kitchen. He is a smart cat, and he likes to explore cupboards. The new kitchen has plenty of them for him to get in to -- and each exploration was followed with a loud bang which tended to rouse me enough to mutter before drifting back off to the land of slumber. Sleep which, as a rather tired version of me was rapidly beginning to realize, was going to be hard to get tonight.

Around 3AM, Mr. The Chairman decided to scale the fireplace. The front of the brick contraption is protected by a heavy metal grate. On his way up, the cat dislodged the grate and it crashed to the brick with a loud sound. I jumped out of bed -- certain the cat had destroyed something absolutely precious! -- and it took a little while to fall back to sleep. Intelligently, I left the grate on its side so he couldn't repeat the adventure.

More meowing, more cabinets, more intrusive petting.

Then at 5AM, he delivered the coup de grĂ¢ce. A jolt of adrenaline so strong, so well placed, that finding myself parachuting in behind enemy lines could have hardly done better.

Seriously. You'll see.

I mentioned earlier that I was sleeping in my office. Picture a little carpeted room situated directly next door to the tile floor kitchen. This was unfortunate, as the cat spent a lot of time in the kitchen banging around in the cupboards. Well, around 5AM he jumped up on the stove and set in motion of chain of events that I'm sure my brain will haunt me with in dreams to come.

On top of the stove was a cheap plastic flashlight that I had put there last night while unpacking a box. The cat landed on it and sent it flying. The flashlight flew off of the stove and hit the ground with the heavy smack of something that contains big D-cell batteries. The noise woke me up.

If that had been the end of it, I wouldn't be writing this entry. Unfortunately, two things happened when this errant stick of plastic hit the ground. The cat had imparted some force to it, and it hit the ground rotating. It also turned on.

When I was jerked from sleep by the bang, my eyes flew open and the very first thing they resolved was the unmistakable sight of a flashlight beam sweeping across my office where I was just moments ago sound asleep. I did what anybody would do upon waking up hearing the obvious noise of an intruder and the evidence of a flashlight being swung around the room. Adrenaline, and lots of it!

My brain decided that, since I didn't have anything nearby -- no guns, no knives, no sticks, no weapons of any sort -- that my best option was speed, surprise, and my (presumably) superior weight. I bolted out of bed by the time the beam swept across my office a second time, leapt to the kitchen door, and jumped through with my arms up, ready to tackle whatever I found. I may have been roaring my defiance at this unknown intruder, I'm not sure.

But of course, as you have no doubt put together, I only found a flashlight rolling to a stop on the kitchen floor and a cat sitting on the stove, giving me a look. "What's your problem, human?"

Mercifully, I did not kill him.

...

To cap the whole thing off, I packed my phone charger and couldn't find it last night, so my phone died overnight. I missed my alarm, missed the train, and drove in. Today is a day game and my office is a block from the stadium -- parking is expensive and traffic was annoying.

Please call me Zombie Mark today, thanks.
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Mark Smith

April 2017

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