Christina: Things sound like they’re really moving along! That’s very exciting. I also like the idea of P-word costumes.
Cassie: Your pets had really great names. Including “Jeffrey.”
Alexandra: I don’t know what it is about cats and flat surfaces… For my cat, laptops are especially alluring when I’m attempting to use Skype.
My pets! Like Cassie, I grew up with fish. We always had them. Unlike Cassie, I also grew up with dogs, cats, and other assorted animals.
My parents had a cat when I was born. Her name was Walker. I don’t remember her. They also had Fairbanks the black Labrador. She was a good dog, and she died when I was in the fourth grade.
There’s actually a rather morbid story about that. Just as Fairbanks was sitting in her last days, we were watching the movie “Old Yeller” in class. You know, the one where the little boy has to go out and shoot his dog. It was terrible. Three years later, our new dog Abbie (also a black lab) was hit and killed by a car. The next day at school, my sister (who was then in the fourth grade and had the same exact teacher as me) had to read the book “Stone Fox,” wherein a little boy and his dog join a dogsled race and the dog runs as fast and as hard as it can until its heart explodes and it dies. Her teacher could barely believe my sister’s tearful story.
Ten days after Abbie died, we adopted Wrigley, who is the best dog ever. At this point, she’s about ten, and still about as puppy-ish as ever.
Those are my dogs. The cats are as follows…
My first cat, after Walker, was Flint. She was really dumb and ran away. After that, we adopted Dart and Ramone. Ramone was the very best cat of all. She (or so we thought, though her name [bestowed by a little girl who knew her in her old home] was a male name) was the runt of her litter and about half the size (and intellectual capacity) of a normal cat. Her face was flat, as if she had run into a wall. And she purred if you so much as looked at her. She only lasted two years with us, but she was amazing. Dart, her younger brother, lasted until about a year ago, dying peacefully at age 9.
My dad, a firefighter, met our next cat at the fire scene of a vet’s office. A tiny orange kitten climbed out of the coat of a nearby vet tech and clambered into my dad’s arms. Thus Cheddar joined our family. In the seven-ish years since, Cheddar has since become weird and quite blobbular and has a very unfortunate voice. She (whose nickname is “The Icky”) likes to sit in the middle of empty rooms and comment on things around her.
My junior year of college, I was adopted by a cat my roommate named Caroline. She is a good one, and she now lives with my family as a Christmas-present replacement for Dart. After giving Caroline to my family, I adopted Carlisle (I did not name him and call him CatCat most of the time). He is a wonderful cat, and I don’t know what I would have done without him in my first days in a new city all alone.
The summer before my senior year of college, my then-roommate and I effectively ran a kitten rescue out of our apartment. We fostered four-week-old kittens Lemon, Lucille, and Ted, and while Ted unfortunately passed away in our care, Lemon and Lucille went on to be adopted from our local humane society. That year, we also found several kittens in parking lots and fields around town and adopted them out to friends.
I’ve also owned lizards, mice, frogs, crayfish, grasshoppers, butterflies, hermit crabs, and probably some other animal that I’m forgetting about. All of them had names and I have story after story about them. However, this post is already about seven minutes late (Please don’t punish me! I started writing in what I thought would be plenty of time!), and I don’t want to bore you.
Those are my pets.