Audrey’s Birthday

My homework avoidance level is near comical when I would prefer to make a blog post about my cat. I am halfway through a glass of wine and can’t concentrate on these boring Pavlov questions, so here goes…

September 11th was Audrey’s third birthday. Audrey is our cat and I often refer to her as “the worst cat ever”. By this, I mean that she is easily in the top three of best animals I have ever known. I’m hard on those I adore.

I got Audrey at a Petsmart right before the Christmas of 2007. She was actually playing in her shitty little cage thing. Jonah wanted her, and — when we took her out of the cage — she purred and wrapped herself around my neck. The manager of the store declared her “full of beans”. After we got her home, she cost $1ooo in medical bills. She had the kennel upper respiratory thing. She would sneeze these horrible green wads of garf all over our house. Nonetheless, we were in love with her instantly and didn’t even mind that we had to give her fish oil and homeopathic weird stuff in her food. She was worth it.

Audrey will never grow up and she will never stop playing. She can play fetch with a hair tie for an hour. She seems to think she is a dog and does literally everything with us. Whereas most cats prefer to sleep all day, run away from loud sounds, and look down their noses at all of the people they live with, Audrey is always always around, runs toward chaos, and really just watches over us. Although my son Jonah regularly tortures her, she gets very upset when he is in trouble and reaches her little paws under his door when he is in time out. She has escorted us to our neighborhood pool more than once. She walks right up to the edge and screams down at us “Get out! Get out, you fools! You’re in the water!”. She goes with us on every walk we take as a family. She walks about ten feet behind us, without fail.

Audrey has a “cat door” on our kitchen, so she comes and goes as she pleases. This means everyone in our neighborhood knows her. Some call her “Squirrel Tail”, some call her “Frederick the mailbox cat”. One lady kept her in her house all night, but — because everyone knows her — another neighbor demanded that she be returned to us. My neighbor explained that Audrey regularly comes to visit her and climbs around on her counter. I have had people tell me that Audrey refused to stop standing on the hood of their car even after they had started their engines. She gets into people’s vehicles. Josh’s cousin’s car. The truck that delivered Jonah’s bed. Our cars, all of the time. She is often actually in the car port when I get home and follows me out into the street when I leave. She is very territorial. She doesn’t go far from our house, unless we are out walking. I have seen her chase people walking their dogs but only when they were right in front of our house. I mean, she chases dogs! Wtf?

Oh, she annoys me all of the time. Mostly with the hunting. This is a cat who has dropped a dead dove on my foot at seven in the morning. She has run into the house and dropped a dead hummingbird into my purse. One spring, she brought at least three (live) fledgling birds into the house. I have come out of the bathroom to a baby snake whipping around in my hallway. I can’t tell you how many dead lizards I have had to deal with and in how many states of decay. I can’t tell you how many live lizards I have had to take back outside.

I recently attempted to adopt another cat. Audrey wasn’t having it. She ran her clear out of town. Sorry Ella, I hope you found other people.

I am a terrible pet owner, because all I got Audrey for her birthday was generic Walgreen’s kitty litter that had a hilarious label. Nonetheless, she knows how I feel. I can’t imagine life without my little worst cat ever.

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