Wherever the Road Leads

Chunky the Fleabag vs Dr. John the Night Tripper

As it may not be obvious, let me point out that I am a Cat Person.

I like cats for the exact reason that many dislike cats: they are aloof, independent, don’t seem to know their names, won’t come when called and only want attention when they feel like it.

Maybe I have a short attention span. If the cat comes around and wants some attention, I am glad to give it. In small doses. Five, ten minutes and we’re done.

That they are independent and use a litter box is perfect for me. I don’t have to worry about being home in time to let him outside for a walk. I can leave enough food for overnight and the cat will overindulge a little, but not wipe out the bowl then go hungry for the next 36 hours.

Cats are useful for medicinal purposes. At first sunlight, the cat jumps up on the bed and kneads, or walks across your body letting you know that your bladder has been functioning perfectly all night long.

Over the years, I have had a few cats. Since moving to the US, they all have had Southern names. The very first cat was “Natchez”, referring to either the old city in Mississippi or to the Natchez Trace, a historical path that extends roughly 440 miles from Natchez, Mississippi to Nashville, Tennessee.

Then came “Magnolia”, a little furball who became “Miss Dixie, the Confederate Kitty” on our way up I-65, moving to Chicago. The people and the weather there proved to be her demise, she got ill and had to be put down.

The local Animal Shelter supplied “Shiloh”, who had a fantastic personality, especially given that he was a northerner. Shiloh’s story is here. I won’t go into great detail again in this post lest you think that I am fargin’ bitter and fargin’ pissed about the relationship where I was foolish enough to give him away.

“Jackson” followed Shiloh. He only lasted about nine months before he had to be put down. The Vet and I were discussing the unpleasant options before I made the call to have him put down. She said I could have him sent to the University of Georgia Small Animal Clinic. She had a more tactful way of saying “… where they’ll charge you $2500 to tell you what he died of.”

“General Robert E. Lee” came from Savannah. He was part Siamese and a terrific pet for the short time I had him. His story is here.

Then along came Tupelo. See here. He was named after the birthplace of Elvis and also ‘Tupelo Honey’, the best-tasting honey that comes from the Florida panhandle.

Cats, when you want them to pay attention and they don’t, or when they wait all day to use the litter pan at the most inopportune time, can indeed be rather irritating. Those times, Tupelo has a nickname. “Ya damned Fleabag.”

As mentioned in previous posts, Tupelo has a little “sack” that hangs down from his belly, politely referred to as his “sporran” in the bottom half of this post. He is indeed a little “Chunky”.

Chunky the Fleabag is virtually mute. The only time I can get him to give out the tiniest little bleat is when I hold the catnip close enough for him to smell but not get at, until he squeaks. It seems to take such a toll on him, I’m surprised he has the energy to roll in his ‘dope’.

Chunky the Fleabag was overdue his shots and check up so we went to the Vet’s office today. I should have worn hearing protection. That damned cat can MEOW and MOAN from the bottom of his entrails. The agonizing, ninety-decibel cries coming out of this foot-long animal were unbelievable.

TupeloVet01 TupeloVet02 TupeloVet03 TupeloVet04 TupeloVet05 TupeloVet06


I can’t say I blame him. I wouldn’t have fond memories either of an office where I had as many repairs done. However this time, the worst thing that happened to him was the indignity of having his temperature taken from the wrong end.

He was much quieter on the way home. Once back inside the house, he scampered to scarf down whatever food was left, made a hurried trip to the litter box, then took off upstairs to hide under a bed.

I may see him again in a few days, after his larynx has recovered. Damned Fleabag.



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