Friday, April 29, 2005

Darwin meets his match

Have I mentioned that Smoky McGruff, our contractor, wears sweatpants? And that sometimes they're cut off at the knees? It's true. He is not one of those contractors who spends his days riding in clean luxury from job site to job site checking on the progress of his denizens, making cell phone calls and counting his money. He's the kind of contractor who gets his hands dirty. Really dirty. His truck: A gold American-made truck with a Harley-Davidson sticker in the rear window and a license plate below the grill that reads, "BITE ME." His cell phone message: "You got my cell phone. Evidently, I couldn't get it or didn't hear it. You can call back or try to leave a message. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't." His ponytail: Long. Things are going well with the reconstruction. All of the new ceilings are in and ready to be painted, which JC and I will be doing next weekend. Every ceiling in the house, except for the one in the master bedroom, had to be replaced because of water damage from Hurricane Ivan. Also several walls and floors and the kitchen countertop. It's a lot of fun over there. ANNE MARIE LUKAS IS GOING TO HAUL MY ASS TO JAIL While our house is being repaired, we have moved into my mother's house, which my brother and I still own. We still own it primarily because cleaning it was too great a job to tackle between last April when Mom died and October when the hurricane hit, and we realized that my family was going to need a place to stay. Mom's cat, Cinder, also lives here. She's a long-haired, dark tabby who runs in the direction of every car that pulls into the driveway. She has never lived indoors, and has only been to the vet twice that I'm aware of. Once to get her kitten shots, and once to be spayed. She is 21 years old. And going strong. Yes, she's a little patchy looking, as any 21-year-old cat would be. And she is thin. When you pick her up (DON'T - FOR GOD'S SAKE, DON'T) she feels like a sock full of chicken bones. She spends her days sleeping on the warm driveway or cooling off in the garage. Mom had a cat door placed in one corner of the garage so Cinder would have run of the place. Now, I know that cats should live indoors and should receive regular medical treatment, etc., etc., etc. My cats do. But this cat - this survival machine - is clearly so well-suited to her environment that, when Mom died, my brother and I were afraid to do anything with the cat but feed her. Besides, we asked each other, she's 20-years-old. She'll probably die soon. She didn't. But she's going to. Because some well meaning person called the Animal Cops on us for animal cruelty. The long and short of it is that we are supposed to get the cat up-to-date tags and contain her on the property. I didn't talk to the Animal Cop, but JC said he seemed to be fairly understanding about the situation. We knew that, if the cat survived long enough, we would have to lead her to that rainbow bridge sooner or later because we couldn't relocate her. We tried that several months ago when one of Mom's friends took the cat for a week, but it didn't work. So it appears that Cinder's time has come. And I will have to be the Angel of Death, driving her to the vet. It just gets better and better.


Blogger PPB said...

This ticks me off. Why can't they just let her live out her days? She isn't suffering, right?

Oh, and the description of the contractor? Classic. I would trust a guy that has a ponytail and cut off sweatpants.

4:36 PM  

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