The nap

So, Mike was sleepy after lunch today and he decided to take a nap. This doesn’t happen very often. He has had a long week. He usually works Monday through Thursday and goes out to some kind of a meeting on Tuesday nights. So that is his late night. The other nights he is on the computer working on his dictation from work. And I suppose he does other things as well, also on the computer. But this week he also was out on Wednesday night at some kind of a Suboxone meeting. This is a whole other topic which I find kind of interesting that I will probably have more to say about another time. Then Thursday night he was out again for some kind of other meeting where he was asked to be some sort of a discussion leader. Then, Friday he went in to work at the office. So he’s way behind in his dictation, but he got up early this morning and worked on it until he went to meet with Pastor Larry, an old friend of his. Pastor Larry is the minister at a small church in Marietta that was founded by former slaves way over 100 years ago. In fact, it was Pastor Larry who ministered to Mike and the family when his late wife, Penny, was in intensive care for all those weeks before she died almost 25 years ago.

So, after some errands and lunch Mike decided to take a nap. He went upstairs and got in the bed where Ladybug, Jackson, and Shayna Maidel were already sacked out. The 3 of them volunteered to be Mike’s nap coaches. I wandered in and out of the bedroom but I didn’t participate in the activities. First, Shayna Maidel dove under the sheet. Jackson was intrigued by the cat shaped lump under the sheet and attacked it. So there was much fast twitch activity from the 2 of them. Then they  would race out of the room, one of them or the other chasing and the other fleeing, and then race back in and do it all over again. Just about the time that Mike figured he would not get any sleep at all, Shayna Maidel climbed up on him and went to sleep, which is what a nap coach is supposed to do in the first place. So Mike drifted off, only to hear moments later the scratch scratch scratching of Ladybug in the litter box on the other side of the bedroom. Ladybug must have known Mike was asleep, because in the 5 or so years that she has lived with Mike and Judy, neither one of them has ever seen her in the litter box. And yet, not one of the 3 cats has ever done their business outside of the litter box. It goes without saying, that when I am indoors I use the boxes as well, exclusively. But I don’t mind spreading the wealth around outside either. Anyway, Mike heard the scratch scratch scratching and opened his eyes. Shayna was sleeping on top of him, and  Jackson was sitting by the bathroom door, the tip of his tail moving back and forth as he was trying to decide what to do next. Ladybug did a good job of burying her business, but an unmistakable order wafted through the bedroom, helping Mike decide that it was time to get up. So he went and scooped the mess out of the box and disposed of it in the toilet as is his custom.

I don’t suppose any of this is really that interesting, but I can’t be profound all the time. If you want consistently profound, I’m not your black cat. I can tell you that there are strange things going on in the house. For one thing, Mike and Judy have been rearranging things upstairs and caring a lot of unnecessary items down to the garage or the basement. The guest bathtub is piled several feet high with bed linens and other stuff. When I say unnecessary items, of course I’m referring to items that a cat would have no use for. Well, about a week and a half ago a truck came by and left a big pile of cartons in the driveway and drove off. Later in the afternoon a man and a woman came by and carried all these boxes into the house and left them in the living room. There is a regular fort in there now that smells like fresh lumber. I can’t imagine what the point of all this is. I had a chance to observe  these events from the front yard, but the other cats were locked up in the family room so they wouldn’t run out of the house with the front door standing wide open. They would be helpless outside.

Oh, Mike just came in. He wants to get back on the computer and finish his work dictation for the week. So, I’ll talk to all of you later.

The hawk.

So, you know how sometimes things seem to be so difficult. You get discouraged and kind of give up hope. In order for cats to get like this we would have to be really hungry, cold, or sick. But people are more susceptible to emotional turmoil. We cats are more in the moment, and we are also much more spiritually connected than people seem to be. People tend to worry on the one hand or be regretful on the other. So they obsess about the future or the past, and often miss their opportunity to enjoy and to be in the present moment. Mike had gotten like this not long ago. He was even restless in the night, scratching his nose, tossing and turning, and being a general disturbance to my rest. To be truthful, there were strange signs. The moon a few nights ago was bigger and brighter than I’ve ever seen. I could smell fire in the air. It hadn’t rained for over 2 months, and all the animals were coming out where you never see them. I had to be more watchful than ever for coyotes when I was making my nocturnal rounds. The other cats in the house had not noticed much of anything different, but they are so self-absorbed that they wouldn’t. Also, they never go outside. Mike doesn’t trust them to be able to take care of themselves, and rightfully so, I’m sure. But for cats, they are good company when I’m in the house. Like most cats, I really prefer my own company, but there are times when other cats are somewhat more than tolerable. I like my humans very much, and several nights a week I bring them little presents. Not that they appreciate my efforts, but a good rule in life is you should never do something because you expect it to be appreciated by anyone else. You just do it because it’s the right thing to do, or just because you are who you are.

So, Mike seemed angry about something although I couldn’t say what it was. He was having a hard time with acceptance. I heard him tell Judy that he didn’t know how to accept the unacceptable. But I saw him working on it and trying to pray about it and let go of whatever it was. If he hadn’t done this work, I don’t think that the Universe would have sent him a sign. Or if the Universe had sent him the sign, he would not have either noticed it or recognized it as a sign. The other day I saw him coming down the street in his little hamster-mobile. As he turned into the driveway a big red-tailed hawk flew from behind right over his car, over his windshield, and landed in the Japanese magnolia right next to the driveway. Mike stopped his car about halfway up the driveway and looked at the bird through the passenger-side window that he had opened. The  hawk turned and looked at him for the longest time. For me, the moment was clearly less spiritual than it was for Mike. I had hidden myself beneath a boxwood hedge, and although he was no more than 15 feet away from me, he did not notice me. The hawk is not my friend. After  several minutes he flew into the next yard and sat there for the longest time with his back to us paying us no mind whatsoever. The hawk symbolizes power and vision. It’s strong talons and beak can rip apart its prey quickly and easily. It can see at a great distance. People with the hawk spirit are intuitive and visionary. They know their own power and are courageous. Red-tailed hawks tend to mate for life, and the males participate in the care of young. So they also symbolize family and loyalty. I heard Mike tell Judy that seeing the hawk helped him a lot with his attitude. He was going to turn his anger and disappointment into action. So I guess Mike is ready to stop wrestling with his problem and move on to the solution, whatever it might be. Who knows? He might even decide to start writing again. As for me, I’m more than content with my cat spirit, as we cats are the most favored and wise of all God’s creatures. And as far as I’m concerned, the red-tailed hawk can stay far away from here from now on, Mike or no Mike.

So, I suppose I should introduce myself a little more.

So, I suppose I should introduce myself a little more. I am called Black Magic by my guardians. I’m known on the outside by my inner cat name which doesn’t translate well into English, so I won’t try. But I am well known in my little neighborhood community. I live with Mike and Judy and their 3 other cats. I have special status among the cats for many reasons, chief among them is that I am who I am. But the most obvious difference, other than my genealogy, is that I’m the only one that gets to go out-of-doors. Strangely enough, the other 3 cats have never even tried to go out. I’ll tell you more about them later although there is little to tell. My grandfather, Black Jack, was a very well-regarded and famous cat. You may have heard of him, because he had the gift that he passed on to me of facility with human language, and he wrote his autobiography. He lived with a fellow named Archie for many years, and then with Archie’s nephew Lenny and his family when Archie got too old and sick to take care of a cat. You can check out Black Jack’s autobiography if you’re interested, but I’m not necessarily recommending that you do so. Franz Liszt was once asked if he was going to write his autobiography, and he said that it was enough to have lived his life, he didn’t have to write about it as well. But writing is a compulsion with some people, and apparently, also, with some cats. I don’t think a dog would ever have to worry about writing an autobiography. A dog wouldn’t know where to start, but I have to admit that what they lack in smarts they make up in loyalty.

So, Black Jack was my grandfather and he used to hang out with Grits, my grandmother. My mother was Black Angel. I have no clue who my father was; more about that another time. Black Angel was a great mom. She didn’t exactly live with anybody, but pretty much ran the streets. She had great survival skills and lived a long time for a strictly outdoor cat. She never picked up human language. She really had no use for it, and I don’t think she had the gift anyway. I always knew I was a little on the different side because I always understood what people were saying to each other. Mom told me about my grandfather. Of course, I heard a lot about him from the other cats in the area as well. When I was about 8 months old I wandered quite far away from my neighborhood and was picked up and brought to a cat shelter. That was an experience I wouldn’t care to repeat. Other cats are okay, but I need my solitude. Luckily, Judy was volunteering at the shelter. She recognized what a handsome and all around marvelous cat I am, and she brought me home to live with her and Mike. And as I said, with the other 3 cats who, as I also said, I’ll tell you what little there is to know about them later.

I get in and out of the house through a cat door. I wear a clever little device around my neck that sends a radio signal to the door to unlock and open it so I can get through. This keeps the other 3 cats in and the neighborhood cats and raccoons out. There is an abundance of squirrels, chipmunks, mice, and other little critters to maintain my interest and keep up my skills. I get fed pretty well in the house, so sometimes I just bring my little trophies home as a present for Mike and Judy. They seem to prefer it if I leave the presents outside, although when I bring them in the other cats get to play with them. They’re particularly interesting to play with if they’re still alive and moving around. The other cats think I’m some kind of a God. Indoors, my specialty is sleeping. I know I sleep over half my life away. But sleep is a gift from the Universe, and it is wonderful. My dreams carry me to marvelous places, sometimes.  I will probably tell you about some of this from time to time. But now, it’s time for a nap.

So, let’s get started.

So, for quite some time I have considered putting my unique skills to use. My grandfather, Black Jack, was the first we know of who had human language skills, and he put them to good use. At the time he was living with Lenny Solomon and trapped in the house. For many years he had been an indoor-outdoor cat. With the freedom to explore the outside world, he was never at a loss for interesting things to do. However, when his guardian, Archie, became too ill to take care of him, he went to live with Lenny and his family. He spent many hours entering his life story and his thoughts on Lenny’s computer. Neither Lenny nor the rest of his family knew anything about this until after Black Jack had already gone on to the next world. There was quite a stir when Lenny found the file. It was eventually published as the Autobiography of a Georgia Cat, but not surprisingly, practically nobody has read it.

I think it would be fun for me to write my ideas down as they come to me and as I go through my own life as an indoor-outdoor cat in Marietta, Georgia. In order to benefit the rest of the English-speaking world, I have decided to publish a blog. In a way, I don’t care if anybody reads it or not. As a cat, I am entirely satisfied with myself already. But as I said, I think it will be fun. To some extent I am going to need Mike’s help with this whole process. But he promised that he would publish my words without any alteration or editorial content of his own. We will see if he keeps his word about this. One thing I am somewhat curious about is whether there are other cat bloggers out there who might write comments about my blogging. We shall see. So I think I’m ready to start. But first, I think I will take a nap.