Getting Gradually Less Spooky

, , , , , | Hopeless | October 5, 2019

(Through a local placement program for untamable ferals, my family adopts a very wild cat who hates other cats and people to help with pest control in our barn. We keep her in a special caged-off stall for a few weeks to try to get her more friendly, but she is having none of it so we resign ourselves to giving her the best life we can while she lives wild on the farm. For a whole year, she avoids us and we only see fleeting glimpses of her. Then, she starts watching us from the rafters as we do our chores. Then, she starts sitting on the shelf where we feed her, well within arm’s reach. Finally, one day…)

Father: “I pet Spooky today.”

Me: “You what?!”

Father: “I pet Spooky.”

Me: “No way.”

Father: “Oh, yes. And I picked her up.”

Me: “You picked her up?! You picked up the cat who almost tore our hands to ribbons through canvas gloves?”

Father: “I did. And she was purring!”

(We have no idea what clicked in her mind, but from that day forward, she became a totally different cat. She even goes to the vet without any fuss! Unfortunately, she still hates other cats so we can’t bring her inside — we have two indoor cats — but we’ve had her for eight years now and she enjoys a privileged position as the barn manager, chief pest control officer, and official farm greeter.)

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Having A Word With God

, , , , , | Related | October 5, 2019

(When I’m in elementary and middle school, I compete in an annual school spelling bee. I get very tired of participating very quickly, because I always pass the writing “tryout” with amazing scores but struggle to spell out loud, and I hate having to study words when I could be playing or reading books. I also happen to go to a religious school, so I end up having to memorize and be able to recite quite a few Bible passages. I’m talking with my mother, who is much more enthusiastic than I am about my academic endeavors.)

Mom: “I don’t understand. You don’t even want to win. Think of how cool it would be!”

Me: “I don’t know why you care so much.”

Mom: “Because I get to brag about my smart daughter!”

Me: *quoting a Bible verse that popped into my head* “’Do not store up for yourself treasures on earth–’”

(My mother doesn’t let me finish before she runs out of my bedroom and looks towards the ceiling.)

Mom: “WHY DID YOU HAVE TO MAKE HER SO SMART?!”

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Has Good Reason To Be A Scaredy-Cat

, , , , , | Friendly | October 4, 2019

I foster cats and kittens and have for about five years. I have two of my own female cats, and about two years ago I was given a stray female that someone had rescued from their yard where their dog tried to eat it. She was under a year old and heavily pregnant, which is usually a really bad combo. Sure enough, three weeks after she arrived, she popped out three kittens. Despite my best efforts, including hand-feeding the tiny black kitten she rejected, none of them made it past day two. Whilst very sad, this is pretty common, given she was injured and very young to begin with.

I kept her for another two months, getting her used to humans and caught up on her vaccines. She went from a terrified, half-starved, neurotic mess, to a very friendly and playful cat. I posted an updated photo of her into our foster group chat. One of the newest members was a middle-aged woman who had just moved to town and told us she’d been fostering animals for years.

She asked if she could have the cat, as she looked just like her old cat that had died the previous year. She even offered to take care of the vet bills if she could have the cat. I explained that the cat was due to be desexed in two weeks but she said that would be fine.

I thought, “Score!” to myself, happy that the kitty dubbed Lady would be going to another experienced cat owner. I dropped her off at this woman’s house and the woman seemed ecstatic. Lady seemed pretty happy, sniffing around the woman’s hallway and batting at a fake plant. I handed over the vet bills and didn’t think much of it again, which for me is a coping mechanism because I do very much miss the cats I hand over.

About a month later, there was a huge fight in the group chat between the “private” fosterers and the ones like me who are attached to a local vet’s office, who also runs the pound. As a result, the group chat disbanded and two separate ones were made, but I remained friends with a couple of the private fosterers and they reached out from time to time with questions or random comments. One day, one of the other girls messaged me, telling me I was going to be mad.

Turns out “Miss Experienced Fosterer” had never gotten Lady desexed, and had continued fostering male cats that had not been desexed. She had posted a picture in the group chat of poor Lady, again heavily pregnant, her ears and face covered in scars and missing fur from where she’d clearly been attacked, probably during mating. My poor former kitty looked miserable. The woman’s message said, “Can anyone take her? I don’t have time for kittens.” Most people in their chat had obviously forgotten where she got Lady. Luckily, my friend offered to come get her right away and brought her straight to my house. When she saw me and my cats she collapsed on my lap and refused to move for three hours, with my other cats coming over to lick her and snuggle. I took her to the vet, had her wounds addressed, and brought her home again.

That was over a year ago. She and her two kittens, Comet and Captain, are all desexed, vaccinated, and living happily at my house, where they will stay. Lady still panics whenever we go on holiday and hides immediately when she sees a male cat. She’s much shyer and more skittish than she was when she left here the first time, and it will probably take years for me to gain her real trust again. 

I have never and will never give up cats to anyone without a background check and check-ins again.

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Don’t Want To Be Caught In THAT Sharknado

, , , , , | Romantic | October 3, 2019

(I’ve had a large stuffed shark from a popular furniture store for a few years and it works great as a body pillow. My boyfriend and I sleep separately due to his snoring and me being a light sleeper. He often pulls the shark down from on top of the couch to wrap around while he sleeps. I’m trying to get him to go to bed one morning and I put the shark back on top of the couch, when he reaches over and says:)

Boyfriend: “Farewell, crotch shark.”

(I doubled over in laughter and he went to bed.)

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What Drives Parents

, , , | Related | October 3, 2019

(My sister, my nephew, and I are walking from our car to the store when a big white car suddenly backs up at us. The driver doesn’t seem to see us, and I hit it.)

Me: “Hey, watch where you’re going!”

(I see him wave at us.)

Sister: “Oh, my God! Are you okay? He almost hit us!” *clutching her baby*

Me: “I’m fine; he just wasn’t looking where he was going!”

(Later, we get home and my sister’s husband is there. I tell him what happened and my sister gives me a look.)

Her Husband: *to sister* “You need to be more careful!”

Sister: “I couldn’t do a thing!”

Me: “It’s not her fault; it’s that stupid guy who wasn’t looking!”

Her Husband: *ignores me* “Be. More. Careful.” *leaves*

Me: “So, if someone runs over [Nephew], he’s going to blame you?”

Sister: “Shh! And yes, he would, because parents are always responsible for what happens to their kids. Always.”

(I tried to say there are exceptions to that but she wouldn’t listen. Definitely a weird thing to think.)

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