Oct 16 2011
Greetings, Cool Peeps:
Last week, I was chillaxin’ from my crazy life, lying on my couch with my furry boy, Captain Jack, and wondering aloud what my next blog would be about. That’s when Jack looked up at me, nuzzled his face against mine, and firmly put his paw down on my hand. Then, looking at me with his big brown eyes, he said, “Mom, it’s about time you stop writing about people and cover the feline action in the ‘hood.”
“Say what, Jack?” I asked.
Jack stretched his front legs and indulged in a slow yawn. When he was ready to resume the conversation, he looked right at me and let out a series of meows. Translation: “There are some cool cats in Swansea who deserve recognition. I challenge you to go around town and meet as many of them as you can. Ask a few questions and then give them a little shout-out. Just be careful—there are a few out there who might be suspicious of your motives. You can do it, Mom. I know you can.”
Cool peeps, believe it or not, Jack had never given me such a challenge before.
Word got around quickly that I was doing a feature about cats. I’d never seen so many cats in windows before, waiting, watching my every move. As you probably know, reporters don’t usually interview cats. So right away, my motives were suspect.
When I passed the home of a coworker, Ana, I noticed that her brown and white tabby was intently watching me from her window perch. I decided to make up a reason to gain inside access and then interview Ana’s cat, Van Goghgo, on the sly. As you can see, Van Goghgo did not want to talk.
As I left Ana’s, pounding the pavement in search for my first feline interview, I encountered Slick, but he was not up for dishing the dirt with me. “Just keep on walking,” he meowed, shooting invisible darts at me with his eyes.
Next, I ran across Taxi. When I asked him if he minded answering a few questions, he just gave me that, you-talkin’-to-me look and kept staring.
I was defeated. I then ran into Taxi’s cousin, Cab Calloway, but he wouldn’t even look at me. He just stared straight ahead.
When Graystone saw me, his tail began to puff out, and as a cat mama, I know what that means. No luck.
Jack had told me that Lope Sly was a great conversationalist and would be sure to grant me an interview. But she was snoozing on the sidewalk, and after waiting ten minutes for her to wake up, I gave up and moved on.
The next cat I encountered was Adonis.
“I hope this is for the cover of CQ,” he said, posing. “I know you wouldn’t waste my time on anything less.”
“Oh, no, of course not,” I said, cowering.
“You have cleared this interview with my agent, yes?” he said.
“Yes, my agent! Look at this face. You don’t think I talk to just anyone, do you?”
“Uh, no,” I said. “Where do I find your agent?”
“Down the street,” he said. “He usually hangs out by the garden hose. Tux is the name.”
Sure enough, I found Tux exactly where Adonis had told me he would be.
“You bring the chow?” Tux said.
“Uh, no,” I replied feebly.
“No interview,” Tux said.
As Jack is an orange cat, I thought that maybe I’d have better luck with his cousins. As I made my way onto the next block, I saw Tango. “Hi, I’m Molly Hacker,” I said. “I’m a reporter for the Swansea Herald. Mind if I ask you a few questions about being a cat?”
“Who me?” Tango asked. “Do I look like I talk to reporters?”
“I guess not,” I said, backing away.
On yet another block, I found more orange cats. But as you can see, they didn’t exactly embrace my arrival. Or in some cases … even notice me.
When I saw two black cats, I thought perhaps they would explain their place in folklore to me, but again, no luck.
Finally, I met Sarita, a very pretty gray girl. She was quite friendly and commiserated with me when I told her I was having trouble getting the cool cats to talk. “It’s hard to explain,” she said. “But cats are very picky. We don’t deal with just anyone.”
I told her that I understood in ways she could not imagine, and thanked her for her time.
On I walked. More defiant stares.
After a grueling day, I met Prissy.
She looked positively livid that I wanted to interview her. In desperation, I explained that my own boy, Captain Jack, had suggested the interview as a way to feature the cool cats in the ‘hood.
Prissy relented a bit, and told me to take it up with her “committee,” Stag and Rag.
Stag and Rag just looked at me. When I finally was able to plead my case, they discussed amongst themselves. I was told that the ultimate king of the neighborhood, Zorro, would make the final decision. If Zorro said it was okay, every cat would talk to me.
It took me a while to find Zorro. I gave him my spiel. He just looked at me and said, “Are you freakin’ kidding me?”
So, tell me, do the cats in your life talk to you? What do they say? Do they send you on “wild cat chases” like Jack sent me on? Have you ever stopped to chat with the cats in your ‘hood?
See you next week.
Yours in pickiness,