I think the photo accompanying this column really says it all.
Puddin’, aka the Orange Menace, does not view Christmas with affection. In her kingdom, jolly elves, reindeer, any visitors, snowmen, partridges in pear trees, carollers, me, and some fat guy lugging a big sack are all intruders.
Puddin’ does not care for intruders. (Mostly those who dare are never seen again.)
Once again, however, Puddin’ and I got to spend time together during the Christmas of 2017 when I returned to Sarnia for the holidays. The fact that December is traditionally the season of good cheer and peace on earth made no difference to either of us.
The claws came out.
Hers and mine.
It began the moment I stepped through the door at my sister’s house. Puddin’ was waiting in the entry, tail twitching, and zeroing in on me with a fixed, yellow-eyed stare. Nonetheless, I had already decided, as the obviously dominant species, to behave in a civilized fashion, to let bygones be bygones, to pour oil on the waters, to set a new and pleasant tone for our vacation together.
“Hello Stinker,” I said.
“Merrrowww!” said Puddin’.
Well, I know profanity when I hear it.
So much for a cease fire.
Very quickly “incidents” began to pile up.
Someone’s face was thoroughly stomped on just when she was innocently catching a little nap on the couch.
Someone was accidentally locked outside in a large snow drift on the back porch for nearly 10 minutes.
One morning, the OM, fol-lowing a long and extremely vulgar display of fawning and mewling, was actually given access to my bowl of Cheerios.
And come on, was it my fault the bowl was already empty?Incidentally, I wish to point out for the record that spontaneously puking exactly where I was walking, later on that same day, was overdoing the whole feline vengeance thing.
I was told by my sister to “stop snitching on the cat” when I loudly and virtuously proclaimed that Puddin’ had scrambled up on the new living room coffee table (from which she was officially banned), nearly toppling a vase of flowers in the process.
Puddin’ was told by my sister to “stop biting your aunt(!!)” when she viciously awoke from a fake cat nap and snagged the finger I was wagging at her.
It finally came to the point where my sister and brother-in-law officially announced that they were getting tired of refereeing the endless cat fights. (I kind of resented that adjective.) It was Christmas, they said: 24 family members were expected to arrive for a turkey dinner, there were presents to wrap and long lists of things which needed to be done so the two of us were JUST GOING TO HAVE TO GET ALONG.
Puddin’ and I, standing side by side on a figurative carpet, glanced at each other.
“Well, I will if you will,” I said.
“Meow,” said Puddin’.
So we agreed. The truce was in effect. No shouting. No biting. No barfing. (That would be both of us.)
Why I was so into the Christmas spirit that I actually purchased a gift, with the tag, KAT, which I placed under the Christmas tree. Puddin’ was equally so into the spirit that she graciously allowed me to take a number of ‘cute kitty’ photos of her, posing with an adorable Christmas Elf, shortly before she tore his head off.
On Christmas morning, Puddin’ opened her parcel from me to discover a lovely new, multi-coloured cat cushion. She immediately dragged it under the tree and flopped down on it.
Later in the day, my sister confronted me.
“Alright, the cat has been rolling around wrestling with that mat, chewing at it, and laying on her back kicking her paws in the air, and now she’s listing to the left every time she tries to walk. If she were human, I’d say she was stoned.”
“Oh no, really?” I said. “How very odd. Of course,” I said, “it might be the fact that the bed is stuffed with high grade Cat Nip… Columbian,” I added.
It really was a “jolly, holly Christmas.”
Never fear, however: Puddin’, aka the Orange Menace, was only down, and not out.
My bed was rolled in and thoroughly slathered in long orange cat hair (I forgot to close the bedroom door just that one time so I know she was stalking me!) Greenish hair balls magically appeared in really inappropriate spots. There were several incidents of Kamikaze biting.
But she really likes her cat cushion.
I’m looking at cat nip mice.
Puddin’ is also plotting.
Wait until summer vacation.