Saturday, September 26, 2009

meow now

Hot day, working with a kitten passed out in my lap. How did this happen? Well, I was going into my first class of the day a Tuesday or so ago, and heard this little one meowing. No sign of a mother, on repeated searches then and later, so said kitten joined us for class that day, and I took him home at the end of the day. After some back-and-forthing on gender identification, settled on the name Mabruuk.

He's a handsome little guy: looks all spotted desert cat. And given his fierce behavior, I have no doubt that that's a decent chunk of his ancestry. Funny, too, since he's the only cat of about five or so I've seen here so far that really looks like him.

He's a meower, that's for sure. Makes me think I'm constantly under-feeding him, since he rushes and howls under my feet every time I go to the refrigerator. Mabruuk thinks all food is his. I can't leave a bowl unattended near the couch as I'm watching TV, or Mr. Eats All Human Food Except Figs will snarf away at at it.

He does like to stick close to me when I'm home, usually playing in whatever room I'm in at the time---poor kitten, stuck inside alone all day: I wish I could let him out to romp, but it's far from safe out there for a little kitten. In the kitchen he tangles through the bits of tree and date broom that I have there; in my bedroom he happily destroys upholstery and/or any accessible areas of my skin; and in the living room he climbs up and down the couches in a frenzy of, well, kittenly frenziedness. Occasionally he glances at the TV and watches for a bit, but the other night, I flipped through to Zee Aflaam, and he was transfixed, utterly transfixed by the Bollywood film playing---he stared at the screen for the entire length of the musical number. That, and the closing credits of Buffy the Vampire Slayer also seem to do it for him.

The only time he's mellow is when he's sleepy. Then he likes to pass out on my chest. For twenty-minute catnaps...literally. Then he's up and at it again, with the unstoppable energy of youth.

Specifically, he thinks everything is a toy. My hands are a toy, my feet are a toy, my hair is a toy, every part of my body is a toy, to be pounced on, clawed at, and bit.

I've missed a lot of sleep due to midnight battles between him and my feet. Or elbows. Or any other bit of me that he identifies as prey. No amount of somewhat rough shoving away seems to be able to convince him that this is a BAD THING. I've now taken to sacrificing my poor stuffed tiger pal up to him as an abusable distraction. This works for a few minutes, but then the live flesh is always more enticing, evidently. Because it goes "Ouch!" and flinches. Whereas my tiger is the soul of nonchalant equanimity. And therefore boring to sadistic kittens bent on destruction and pain.

So Mabruuk, he's a good little companion: he helps me a lot---can't feel lonely when you're busy staunching the latest flow of blood--and I hope the life I'm giving him is to his liking.

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