Saturday, December 3, 2016

Everyone Settles In

 The day after I moved out my father walked outside to find a small starving kitten on the wall leading up to our building. He had just been preparing sushi and when he stretched out his hand to the kitten, he started licking it. Needless to say, my parents now have a kitten. When my dad picked him up, he fit in the palm of his hand. He brought the kitten inside, and the kitten immediately scarfed down about 3 times his weight in cat food.
The kitten, formally known as Lucky, informally known as “the black devil,” reminds us all of me as a child. After watching him run and jump and play for half an hour without pause, I finally understood what they meant when they said that having me was like having 3 kids. He can go on like this for hours until he finally passes out for his afternoon nap. Then he wakes up and continues running, jumping, and attacking. All night. He gets banished to my room at about 6 in the morning, when he gets rowdy with Pooms. Pooms does not appreciate being jumped on and attacked by a young upstart so when the hissing starts, they have to be separated. This is all well and good, unless I’m sleeping in my room at the time. I was warned one shabbat when I came home for a quiet, relaxing weekend that my room was the new “time out” zone. The door opened promptly at 6 o’clock in the morning, and one small, hyperactive black ball of fur was deposited into detention. He then initiated a cycle of whining at the door, playing in the litter box my parents had so nicely provided for him (in my room. Where I sleep), and attacking my feet. This lasted about 15 minutes until he was ejected into the hallway.
Pooms has not being taking the appearance of a new kitten very well. Lucky attacks anything that moves, especially if it’s small and four-legged. She hisses, swats at him, and then runs away. He is not deterred by this reaction and considers it a game to chase her around the house. Poor Pooms was rescued from one bully, only to get stuck with another, albeit smaller one. So if anyone wants a cat, we’ve got a few available.

In other news, I’ve settled into my new place. I was alone in the apartment the first few days until my roommates came back from wherever it was that they’d been. Which made it difficult to eat since I didn’t know where anything was in the kitchen. I may not have seen my roommates, but I did meet the neighbors the first night. They knocked on my door at 21:30 to request that I stop moving furniture around (as if it was 2 in the morning or something). Which was unnecessary since the only furniture that came with the room was a bed. I assured them that I had no more furniture left to move and they went away.
The next day I assembled the desk I had brought with me from Ma’ale Adumim and lugged up 3 flights of stairs in pieces. The next task was to order a clothes cupboard which I did from Home Center. It arrived “promptly” two weeks late after numerous calls from the delivery guy who kept making appointments to deliver it and then not showing up. I finally had to email the company (they don’t even have a call center) threatening to cancel the whole order unless it showed up by the end of the week. Which it miraculously did.
I decided that the guys had been living in the apartment too long and needed a bit of a shake up. Which I generously provided by gradually rearranging the entire kitchen. Everyday I would move or rearrange something else. My OCD required that I go over the entire kitchen, organizing and making everything more efficient. It was kind of like a game to see how much I could change without anyone’s brain exploding from the shock.
Johnny too settled in, and quite quickly. In fact he may have gotten a bit too comfortable. One of my roommates found him sitting on his bed, staring at him in the middle of the night. Johnny did not appear to be embarrassed by his creepy nightly behavior. In typical cat fashion he refused to sleep in his own bed, the one I had optimistically brought with me. It took him about a month or so to decide that it actually wasn’t so bad after all.
In addition, he seems to have come up with a game where he sees how many toys he can toss into his food or water dish. Of course then there was the morning when I woke up and there was nothing in his food bowl because he had knocked it over during the night.

He has not endeared himself to my roommates by hissing at anyone who approaches him. Even if the only reason they’re approaching is because he’s sitting in the middle of the hallway, blocking access to the bathroom. He doesn’t care. He still wishes plague and pestilence upon them. After finding his freshly made challah nibbled on (it had been wrapped in two plastic bags which did not survive the ordeal), my roommate asked me if I could train him not to jump on the table. I just laughed. Incidentally, I forgot to warn the other roommate about Johnny’s penchant for challah, with similar results for the poor, helpless challah, which was found the next morning on the floor. Clawed open and nibbled on.
Johnny’s crowning moment is what I have designated “the shower curtain incident.” I was awoken in the middle of the night by a loud crash and then a slam. Any pet owner will tell you that the first thing one does in such a situation is try to locate the pet. He wasn’t in my room which told me that there was a very good chance he needed rescuing. Most likely from himself. The bathroom door was closed, which it isn’t usually since his litter box is in the laundry room attached to the bathroom. I tried to open the door, but it was wedged shut. I managed to slip a foot in and kick away what turned out to be the shower curtain rod blocking the door. Johnny was standing frozen in the laundry room. I tried to call him out but he refused to move. Finally after enough persuasion, he hightailed it outta there as fast as his oversized legs could carry him. As he ran by, I noticed he was wet. At this point one of my roommates lumbered out of his room rubbing his eyes and asked me what was going on. My response was “the shower curtain fell down.” This was met by a moment of silence, and then “it just fell?” I shrugged and answered “yep.”
So I’m standing there pretending I have no idea how this happened, meanwhile my cat is wet and there’s a small puddle of water in the bathtub. But the next morning he asked me again, “so the shower curtain fell, huh?”
“All by itself?”
At this point I felt he was a bit too alert for me to play dumb, so I hesitantly answered, “well it may have had help. Johnny may have had something to do with it. But he’s not talking.”
Later I asked the other roommate (who sleeps like the dead) if he had by any chance heard anything in the middle of the night. Indeed he had. He’d been just about to fall asleep when he heard a crash outside his room...
This was unfortunately not his last bathtub adventure. We find him in there every once in a while, just chilling. As if this is a totally normal place for a cat to hang out. I guess that’s what happens when your cat is waterproof.

1 comment:

  1. You really have to wonder who Johnny was in a former life. And how long he will be tolerated by your roommates. I hope they'll grow into a mutual affection!