In high school we used hang out with some boys who always made fun of a particular cat they saw once. Real quality guys, I know. I was a bit off myself back then. But anyway…they would imitate it walking and hissing, they contorted their arms and made this odd clicking noise as they hissed and batted their arms. They’d say, “Ahhh it’s the crippled cat, the crippled cat.” By the time I met them they’d perfected this dramatization and the cat was only a distant memory, but any given night at some house party you could rest assured someone would bring out the crippled cat character and make everyone squeal with laughter.
I have an extraordinary cat named Louie. I found him in Atlanta when he was but a wee little feline. We took him in and quickly realized that he was a gem. He was cool, laid back, and had a mellow swagger that everyone loved. Even people who said they hated cats loved this guy. Ol’ banjo we used to call him. Well he’s about fifteen years old now and a few weeks ago he was sunning on our front porch when a new dog in the neighborhood got off leash and made a beeline for Louie. When I saw him attacking Louie I could tell he meant to kill. It was awful. Worse yet, I froze. I couldn’t do anything but scream, thank God my daughter rescued him and beat down the dog. $2000 later, I have my Louie back, my very own crippled cat. He’s only got three legs now and is adapting, but I can’t help but chuckle when I see him hopping and recall the antics of my former friends.
He’s a good little companion. He sleeping with me now and will probably be an indoor cat from here on out, either way, I’m glad he’s alive. Animals can teach us a lot about overcoming adversity. He is my furry, little ball of inspiration tonight.