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  • Smarty Cat

    Many people think that cats are dumb. They supposedly can't be trained to do anything other than use a litter box. They're not fun like dogs.

    I disagree.

    We have a cat who is smarter than most dogs I know. Sure, dogs can be trained to do all sorts of fun stuff, but my cat learns.

    After we trained her to play "chase," she figured out that she could double back and scare us half out of our minds. She discovered that it takes just one claw in the the elbow to wake a sleeping human. She knows that she can bite as hard as she likes when the glove is on, but does not bite so hard when the glove is off.

    And now, she has learned that a puking sound gets a swift reaction out of the humans, and has figured out how to fake it.

    This morning at 0-dark-30, she started scratching the bedroom door to be let out. I ignored her. And then she started wheezing like she does when she's going to chuck a hairball or her dinner. I was up in an instant. Almost right away I noticed she had stopped. I looked around for the evidence, couldn't find any, and went back to bed. Very soon, the hurling began again. I hop up, she stops, and then I realize that she is absolutely determined to get out.

    So I let her out and check for signs of hurling. There are none. If cats are supposed to be dumb, mine is a flamin' genius!

    And this, my friends, is why we don't wish for bad things.

    I have this person in my life whom I've come to hate more than hate itself. I'm usually very cautious with my ill feelings, because I know that normally, they simply aren't justified. "Hate" is such a strong word, a forever word, and one shouldn't just bandy it about. I don't hate collard greens--they don't agree with my palate. See how nice and inoffensive that is? But this guy... 

    I kept my mouth shut, because I love the person who picked him. To judge him is to judge her, and I can't do that. So I try. I try to find some way to redeem him. He keeps at a job he doesn't like because it pays well enough. That's something, right?

    But then he gets accused of something terrible, and we circled the wagons to protect our own, as you do. Then the other shoe drops: the accusations were all lies. His reputation has been completely destroyed, his marriage is definitely over, his family is torn into enemy camps.

    I now find myself feeling a little bit sorry for him. Bad things should happen to bad people, absolutely, but he didn't deserve so much bad. Tossed out because he's a jerk, sure. But this? Never.

    My internal conflict is haunting what little sleep I find.

    Grammar nazis: not sure if I used "whom" correctly. If you discover I'm wrong, please comment and I'll edit.