Monday, January 3, 2011

Quiet home no more...

If you asked me if I prefer cats or dogs, I'd tell you dogs. Same goes for the wife. We like them so much that we went a little crazy this fall with wanting one. We picked out a breed, found some breeders, even made some inquiries, and then remembered - "hey, we're in a little apartment in Chicago. Is this really the right time to have a dog?"

Also, our landlord also has a no dog policy. So that ended that.

But that didn't end our desire for a pet. Fish are lame and make better food than pets. Birds are loud, messy, and annoying. And there's always that constant temptation to try and train it to sit on your shoulder so you can look like a pirate. K, maybe that's just me. Anywho, alligators are illegal and monkeys throw poop. Gerbils are glorified rodents and no matter what anyone says, I will never believe that a rock can be a good pet. Nope. No pet rocks for me.

So, after returning from The Big House (a.k.a. Mom and Dad's at Christmas), our apartment felt more like a mega-closet than a mini-home. And it was quiet. Too quiet.

So, pet fever set in again.

It also didn't help that a friend in the city was followed home by a stray cat and his wife put up pictures of the feline destitute.

Granted, that cat was so ugly I knew on the spot that if we got her we would just name her Ugly. Okay, I know that's harsh, but it looked more like a cow than a cat. It just did. End of story.

So it was time to hit up to world wide web. PAWS charges way too much for their cats so we went to, yes, that's right, The Anti-Cruelty Society. Duh, duh, duhhhhh...

Walking past the ACS building on Grand and LaSalle I always thought it looked more like the research center of a mad scientist than a kind home for cats and dogs in need of owners. It's not an abandoned warehouse or anything, it just never looked inviting. And with a name like "The Anti-Cruelty Society" I knew that it was either one of two things. A clever name meant to throw off innocent bystanders and mislead them into believing that good, humane things happened inside it's doors, or an actual operation by good-hearted, well-meaning, well-funded people who were bad at naming their organization. Wouldn't "Humane Society" be easier?

Anyhow, off we went on Thursday afternoon. Upon arrival the wife had to fork over her coffee because it wasn't allowed inside. First move by the ACS - uncool. But on to the kittens.

Inside the feline room were probably thirty-five to forty cages of cats of all ages. Kittens a few months old to cats on the last of their nine lives. We wanted a kitten, naturally, but the one we saw online was already claimed. Oh, no! Oreo was going to be someone else's! Egads!

But that freed us to give a fair appraisal of the other cats. There were tabbies, calicoes, persians, and all sorts. All black cats, all white cats, orange, brown, and mixed color cats. Big ones, little ones, feisty ones, frightened ones, fatties and anorexic kitties. Seriously. All sorts. So we picked out two kitties and took them out to play. First was Pineapple. He was a three month orange kitty with 'cuddly' written all over him. But after a little while we decided we wanted a cat with a little more personality. So back went Pineapple and out came Stella.

Stella was a mix between a calico, a tabby, and something else. I forget. Anyhow, where Pineapple was a flop, Stella was a homerun. One application, interview, and about forty minutes later we had a cat. Just like that. But not in a hat. K, I said that just rhyme. Back to the kitty... She's awesome. Sploches of color everywhere. Spots, stripes, patches of this next to patches of that, and then a ton of white mixed in. Black, orange, gray, white, spots, stripes, patches, and everything all mixed together. What an awesome cat! And, she came pre-spayed, with her vaccinations, deworming, microchip and everything. Pretty good deal.

Just look at her! What a cutie!

But the name had to go. Now if your name is Stella, don't worry, we probably like you. But we didn't want your name for our cat. The naming game had begun.

Porky. Peanut. Asteroid. Georgie. Nala. Felix. Hobbes. Trudy. Tiger Lilly. Spas-ti-cat.

None of them fit.

Penelope was a little better, but it didn't have anything to do with her personality or her coloration or anything. We just liked the name. The wife liked the name Cricket because of how loud her purr was, but I wasn't a fan. And on and on it went. I'd like a name but she wouldn't and vice versa. I liked Moose, but she didn't. She liked Patches but it didn't stick. With her unique colors and markings it was difficult finding a food that she resembled. Turtle? Like the ice cream? It kinda works, but doesn't.

Until last night. Epiphany.

It had been on the tip of my tongue for days. Finally, while watching her play last night I realized what she resembled. Our cat is a half-burnt marshmallow. You know, one of those perfect, huge, Jet-Puff Marshmallows that you had too close to the flame and so parts of it got singed, but other parts of it are still perfect golden brown. And all gooey on the inside. Yup. That's our cat.

I think it works on multiple levels, too. It may just be the kitten in her, but sometimes she seems a little half-baked. Haha...

So, welcome to the family Marshmallow.

We're happy you're here :)


J&H said...

Marshmallow is beautiful. What fun!

Anonymous said...

Aaron R:
But if it was Stella, you could yell it like they do on "Street Car Named Desire" everytime she did anything she wasn't supposed to do!