Archive for the ‘Great and Mighty Cat’ Category

With the temperatures regularly plunging into single digits this winter, the cats who normally roam the wilderness surrounding Stratford are not available to occupy Buddy’s attention. Perhaps they have found shelter with some of the landed gentry, or perhaps they ran away to join the circus in warmer climes. At any rate, they are not frolicking in the front yard, so Buddy has had to amuse himself with his own escapades recently.

In our previous post, we mentioned that he had been jumping onto the counter to play “delicious stream in the desert” when the faucet was left dripping during the frigid nights. So when the temperatures rose a bit and the stream was stopped, Buddy howled periodically throughout the night, begging for his beloved game to be restored. But it was not to be. The caretaker is mean and selfish, and so the stream stays dry. Not to be outdone, however, Buddy changed the game slightly. It soon took the form of “lake in the savanna,” and could be played any time the caretaker left dishes or pans soaking in the sink.

Savanna Lake

A Lion on Savanna Lake

Stern warnings from the staff failed to get Buddy to stop this behavior, and so the caretaker has changed her habits. Water shall no longer be left in the sink; strike two for Buddy the mischievous monarch.

Streams dry up and lakes are drained, but Buddy is unflappable. So other games are improvised whenever the caretaker is thoughtful enough to provide props. A tasteful centerpiece of long-stemmed pink and mauve roses can be instantly transformed into a haven from the dangers of an imaginary rainforest. It is a mercy that Buddy never figured out there was water in the vase or a river would have played a central part in this game.

Rain Forest

A Tiger in the Rain Forest

The final game in Buddy’s homage to the great cats is “slay the antelope.” Mercifully, Bear is not the prey this time. No, the victim in question is the throw rug that lives in his doorway. Mind you, the rug is there to prevent his accidentally shutting himself inside his room and to catch some of the litter that he tracks out of the box, but it has apparently been insolent recently, and so it has faced the shadow of doom. Literally. A close look at the photo reveals a menacing four-pawed shadow, with one paw raised to strike again.

Rogue Rug

Rogue Rug falls prey to Cheetah Shadow

The photo was taken as evidence of a great struggle. The rug was found crumpled and confused, at least 24 inches from its natural habitat. One can only surmise that like any other hapless antelope (or antelope substitute), the rug was minding its own business when out of nowhere lunged a fierce predator, snatching it out of its serene existence and introducing it to the dual terrors of jaws and claws. Shudder, gentle reader, for if Stratford has been turned into a jungle, what will happen to the mere peasants at Downton and even lesser estates?

It’s a very good thing that cats require so much sleep, otherwise the caretaker would never get a break. So if you see any of the outdoor cats, tell them they are sorely missed.


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