Tuesday, February 24, 2009

PROMPTuesday #44: Pastiche

Write a character sketch of someone you love (child, partner, pet, mentor, etc.). Detail this person, let us see him or her through your description. Maybe you want to “show” your loved one through action and movement, or perhaps you are viewing him or her in repose. Either way, get down to brass tacks and give us the one you love through your writing.

First...let me just say I had to Google the word "pastiche" to see what the heck it meant. According to wikipedia, here's the brief definition: "The word pastiche describes a literary or other artistic genre. The word has two competing meanings, meaning either a "hodge-podge" or an imitation" OK, I feel smarter now.

Off we go...someone I love huh...I have lots of someones that I love...how do I choose just one? So that I don't offend any "humans", I'm going to write about our Cat family.

I bought a kitten for my oldest daughter about 8 years ago, we named her Nala. My daughter wanted to name her Simba (but that was the boy lion from the 'Lion King' movie, so she had to be the girl lion). She was, and still is, a very particular cat about who she snuggles up to. She pretty much just likes me and my oldest...but she will approach other people for petting sometimes, but turns on them pretty quickly when she's had enough. She has mellowed a LOT since we got her spayed.

Then, my mom, who worked as a Vet Tech in a local veterinarian's office said that a stray cat was brought in, and had been there for several weeks and hadn't been claimed. So, we went to look at her...and she was SO cute, and tiny, and needy. So, we took her home. And she proceeded to follow us everywhere we went...when I slept, she had to sleep right next to me with a paw or some part of her body touching me at all times. We named her 'Shadow' because that's what she was...our little shadow following us all the time. She and Nala did NOT get along for about a month, they could barely be in the same room together...but they're buds now.

Then, we moved to our new house, and it was just Nala and Shadow for the first year and a half. But when I was pregnant with our youngest, a cat appeared on our back doorstep. We thought the cat was a boy, and since he looked like a bobcat, we dubbed him 'Bob'. We told ourselves we would never let 'Bob' in the house...but then it started getting cold outside, so we started letting him in (we are such suckers) But he still wanted to be an outside cat, so he would run around during the day and then come back at night for food and shelter. He was declawed in the front, so he had been someone's pet before...apparently a "drop off" in the neighborhood...which I had never heard of before until we lived in this area. People have told us that sometimes if people move, and they can't take their cats with them, they just go to an established neighborhood and drop the cat off, hoping that someone will take care of them. We think this was the case with Bob. But, upon further inspection, we determined that Bob was actually a girl...so, Bob is now short for Bobbie Jo (we pretty much just call her 'Bobber' though).

Okay...so, a few months after Bob showed up, another little cat showed up on the back porch. She was a small, black and white kitty...who looked very malnourished. We think she showed up because we were feeding Bob in the backyard and she probably smelled the food. We named her 'Teeny Kitty'. One day, Teeny Kitty was laying on our table on the back porch, and I noticed her belly area looked a little swollen...and I said, "She must have had kittens at some point because her little boobs are kinda swollen", but we never saw any kittens. Teeny Kitty hung out at our house at night to get her food, and then she would disappear during the day, somewhat like Bob. We had our youngest baby by that time, and when she was a couple months old, Aaron went out to the living room to feed the cats while I was in the bedroom with the baby. And all of a sudden I hear, "Oh my God!"...at first I got a freaked out feeling, and I yelled "What?!"...but a few minutes later, Aaron brings in the cutest, tiniest, little kitten in the whole wide world, that looks JUST like Teeny Kitty! Ah ha! She DID have a kitten! She was SO cute...she already had her eyes open and was walking around, but she was still nursing. We named her 'Teeny TINY Kitty' because she looked just like her mama.

Teeny Kitty and Teeny Tiny Kitty hung out on our back porch for that day, and then the next morning the kitten was gone. But Teeny Kitty still showed up for her food. Then, a couple hours later, Teeny Kitty came back with ANOTHER kitten. This one was mostly white, with black spots...kind of like a cow, so we named her 'Moo Moo'. Again, Teeny Kitty let Moo Moo hang out for the day, and then the next morning the kitten was gone. That day, Teeny Kitty brought ANOTHER kitten to our back porch...this one looked like she had a black hat on, and a completely white face. When we picked her up though, she hissed and jumped out of my arms and ran away...we named her 'Feisty'.

On this third day, Teeny Kitty left Feisty with us while we were all sitting in the back yard. She returned a few minutes later with yet ANOTHER kitten (we're at 4 now)...this one was mostly black, with a white chest and white feet...so we named her 'Socks'. Teeny Kitty left Socks with us, jumped over the wall, and a few minutes later returned with Moo Moo...left her, and a few minutes later returned with Teeny Tiny. We have NO idea where she was keeping her 4 kittens, somewhere in our back alley I'm sure...but it appeared that she was showing them off to us to see how we would treat them, and then when she decided our back yard was going to be a safe place to keep them, she brought them all over.

Teeny Kitty and her four kittens slept on our back patio, and then hid under a bush in the corner of our yard during the day. As they grew, they started eating the hard cat food and eventually stopped nursing (much to Teeny Kitty's relief). We got in touch with a local AZ organization called AZ Cats, and they have what's called a TNR (Trap Neuter Release) program, where you pay a donation to borrow some kitty traps and catch the kitties, take them to a participating veterinarian and have them neutered/spayed, and then return them to their outside habitat. So, we did this so that Teeny Kitty and her kittens would not overpopulate the neighborhood with more feral cats. (They were 4 girl kittens...and we have 4 girl daughters...interesting huh?)

Anywho...we thought we would try and get them adopted so that they could have an inside home, but no one would take them. So, we just kept feeding them, and thinking that as they grew older they would probably take off and go do their own thing. But nope! Mama kitty and her 4 little kittens still hang out at our house, and we're going on almost a year that they've been here. They run around and go on their adventures during the day, but they come back at about 6pm for their dinner and hang out until morning when they get their breakfast. They are like 'teenage' kittens now, they are getting so big and it's been so fun to watch them grow up. They've become friends with Bob, who plays with the kittens sometimes. Our inside cats, Nala and Shadow, still hiss at them, but not as much.

This is Socks.

This is Mama (Teeny Kitty) and Teeny Tiny Kitty

This is Socks & Feisty

The one in the litter box is Moo Moo

So...we have a blended human family, and a blended cat family...lots of love at this house. :)

(Sorry, way more than 250 words!)


Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

Love your cat names!

What a sweet tale.

My middle daughter has a dog named Rafiki. ;-)

g said...

I love their names, too. I love the way this story progresses - First a cat. Then another cat. then another cat, and a cat, and a cat....!!!

Love it!

I have always been a cat lover, but I've been allergic since becoming an adult, so now I only enjoy them from afar - I'm a dog person.

San Diego Momma said...

Teeny Kitty was on her way to being the Octo-Mom!

Anyway...I also love the names AND the story.