awkwardly

Monday

Deidzoeb and Basketcase proudly announce
the latest addition to their family, of unknown age, hailing from parts unknown:

Mitchigan Eddie Burns
Lansing Gao Hong Lonnie
Larry Chomsky Harper's Lawry's
Smith-Northrup


Primarily known as
"Eddie," the puss is a domestic shorthair, mix of gray and
brown and black spotty tiger stripes, ears a little longer than Lucky's but
maybe he'll grow into them. We're guessing by his size that he's under a year
old, but what do we know? His voice is raspy but he's very loving (for now) and doesn't seem scared of anything.


The removal of Eddie's testicles is
planned for Tuesday, August 17th. In lieu of flowers, Eddie's testicles request that you send donations to
NOCIRC (Natl Organization of
Circumcision Information Resource Centers).


Explication of Eddie's full name: beginning with Lozie Ocarina Okratina Patches, we established a naming convention whereby all names suggested become part of the animal's full name. Then one name gets used more than others, just like in human naming. The afternoon before getting Eddie, we had gone to the Great Lakes Folk Festival in East Lansing, where we saw Eddie Burns and Gao Hong and ate at a place called Harper's. When I was younger, my family had a cat whose tiger stripes formed an M on its forehead, so my dad had named it Mitchigan. I didn't want to settle on that name because the M isn't very clear on Eddie's forehead, and he has this freaky jaguar-like pattern, not as much of a traditional tiger stripe. He has something more like a paw traced on his forehead, including dots for the little footpads. Later that night after bringing him home, we brainstormed names while waiting for some pork steaks to finish on the grill. Melinda's suggestions mostly involved names starting with L and ending with an "ee" sound, just like Lucky and Lozie. That's how she came up with Larry and Lonnie and Lawry's (the brand name of seasoned salt we used on the pork). I suggested Chomsky, but only half-heartedly because I know that Noam dislikes the cult of personality that has developed around him.


Ironically, after I had made acceptance of the cat conditional on my getting to name him, I think it was Melinda who suggested that we name him after a person or event that we had seen that day, and the first one she said was Eddie Burns.


Coercion, Pleading, Caving In: Our neighbor Karen had found the kitten that morning somewhere near our backyard. She asked us to come take a look at it. For about twenty minutes or more, I sat at the table with Karen and Melinda, saying no, sorry, no, we can't take him. It will cost more money, it will increase the urine around our house (already a considerable problem with our two female cats), it will impregnate the two females! I really don't like getting animals fixed, but as soon as I started thinking of the situation as a challenge, how we could detain this cat in the basement and segregate him from our current detainees until scheduling an appointment with the vet, then somehow solving this logistical puzzle seemed more interesting than being responsible, which would have been to ignore all the pleading and coercion that Melinda and Karen had heaped on me. After I agreed that we could take the cat, Melinda started repeating, "Wait, you're going to get home and yell about how we forced you to take it."


Which is true, and which I still want to do, or else why would I have added this section? But I take full responsibility for any urine-soaked walls or magazines, newly shredded carpets (excluding the patches already torn up by Lozie), or boxes of kitty litter becoming overloaded every two days. Regardless of the stubstantial barage of unfair influence and lightly disguised name-calling, the real decision was whether to take in a third cat and all the expense and trouble that comes with it, or let him get hit by a car or hit by the Humane Society, which is what would have happened if we put him back outside.


A few months from now when Eddie is rolling around in my lap and purring, I'll be thankful that they coerced me. (I won't actually thank them, but at least I'm admitting it here. That's as good as you'll get.)

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