Toad in the Hole

August 08, 2004

Contrapuntal Cat Story

...or Matt the Cat Saves the Day:

Yesterday I was drinking my second cup of coffee (therefore not quite alert and oriented) and heard an odd rattle from the aquarium. I assumed it was one of the dojo loaches making one of those frantic surface dashes they make now and then and bumping the filter intake tube or something. But when I let Matt the Cat in for his breakfast*, he went to the back of the aquarium cabinet immediately, climbing through the dracaena on the floor to get there, and more or less pointed.

I moved the plant and scatted the cat and sure enough, there was a dojo loach wiggling on the floor. I grabbed it and returned it to the tank, and as there has been no pitiful corpse floating on the surface since, I assume the fish survived. If Matt hadn't pointed it, I'm sure it would have desiccated or maybe bloated and raised a fearsome stink behind the cabinet.

Matt pointed a rat for us once -- an escaped snake dinner who had actually tumbled his little rat carry-cage off the sideboard and sprung the lid -- and Joe managed to catch it, on the third point. The first two spots the rat had been pointed were up on the livingroom curtain rod and under the coffeetable, neither reachable in time. I'm finding this tendency a bit odd, if certainly convenient: he doesn't pounce; he points, practically like a bird-dog.

Well, for this one he gets tolerated a little longer.

*Actually, it might have been his second breakfast or elevenses, for all we know. I'd bet someone else is feeding him, as he's bigger than what he eats here would account for and he's entirely too charming in his dignified way.

Matt has moved in on us, basically, causing me to compromise both my principles and my health -- I'm allergic to him, of course. So he can't be an indoor cat. He does wear a noisy bell, to which he acquiesced grudgingly. He's allowed on Joe's lap, one chair, and of course the doormat, the floormat, the bathmat, whatever mat's handy: his favorite places to be, which is how he earned his name.

Posted at August 8, 2004 04:55 AM