Sir Nimitz: Kitten of Destiny
Nimitz: (from the McCarthy Extreme Dictionary)
- An excellent US Naval Admiral currently lending his name to some fine aircraft carriers
- Lady Dame Honor Harrington’s treecat
- My own vicious predator combing the intelligence of Admiral Nimitz with the ferocity and terrible bone crushing claws of death of Honor’s treecat.
While my wife I were living in a small apartment in the central Texas town of Bryan, we were beset upon by a great wailing. My natural assumption was that it was World War III or Armageddon or some such. But no, my wife says, it sounds like a cat. Oh.
It was very late (like midnight) on a Saturday night. So, being the soft-hearted suckers that we are, we don shoes, grab the photonic projection cannon (oh, all right, it’s a flashlight) and head outside. Out apartment, near the hospital, butted up against some woods and empty lots. SO we went trekking, making cutesy “here kitty kitty noises”.
I’m in front holding the light and I see this tiny streak of white fuzz. It shoots through my legs and proceeds to climb my wife. I turn the light around and she has this expression of utter shock looking down at a small kitten hanging from the hip of her Levi’s. Oh, the poor dear… boy was it a trap. My personal theory is that mama couldn’t keep up with his tummy and kicked him out.
We took him inside. Our current cat, The Mighty Mystical Misty, was not pleased with this squalling lump. [We call her Misty because when she threw her spear, she… never-mind. BTW: Extra points for filling in the blank there and super-duper extra points for the author and book that I blatantly stole that line from.] Anyway… the squalling lump.
We fed him. We picked burrs out of his fur. We fed him. We gave him a bath. We fed him. How little did we realize. Sigh.
That night, I held the poor shivering creature against my chest. It was a chilly night. The little thing went straight to sleep. Ahhhh. Yeah, right. About 3 o’clock in the AM, he gets hungry (seeing a pattern yet?) and starts rooting around for something to eat. Mother’s who have breastfed will catch that clever bit of fore-shadowing. I didn’t sleep with a shirt and he saw something that looked promising and promptly bit down. I didn’t realize it, but I had just started the male nipple piercing craze. No wonder his mama left him, he had teeth. And those cute little rice grains of teeth were SHARP!
After retrieving him from the dresser were I threw him, I got him something to eat. Now, I was a trained servent, much more valuable than a common slave like most humans are.
The next day, while my wife was at work, I heated up a plate of macaroni and cheese for lunch (we were poor). The phone rings and I talk to my dad for a bit, not considering that I had been eating at a very low coffee table. I come back to find sweet, little Nimitz standing with all four paws in my plate sucking down Mac and Cheese like there’s no tomorrow. Now, I’m a well trained servant that cooks. Oh boy, were we in for it.
Nimitz, you see, and I haven’t explained to this point because… well… it’s funnier this way, was destined to become king of all he surveyed. If that just happened to be our living room, well, there you go. Nimitz is a half-breed. A hybrid if you will. One of his parent’s, presumably his mother, was a normal, sweet, feral domestic cat (Felis silvestis catus for those keeping score). His other parent was a bobcat (Lynx rufus presumably). Nimitz was born with a bare nub of a tail (which is hilarious to watch twitch when he’s stalking something).
As Nimitz got older, he developed tufts on the tips of his ears, a heavy fringe of fur around his neck (until the fungus incident), and now, he’s an earth (or at least ceramic tile) shattering 22 pounds and none of it fat. I can touch my thumb and middle finger together around his stomach. It takes both hands to wrap around his chest. Have you ever pressed your thumb into a cat’s pads to extended their claws? Have their claws ever curled completely around your thumb? Nimitz’s do. Fortunately, he’s very loving so clipping his talons of death are relatively painless, requiring an emergency room visit only about once a year.
He’s loving, of course, because he’s discovered he gets more food that way. His favorite time to ‘love’ you is when you’re carrying a plate to the table. He loves your leg, causing (if your lucky) only minor contusions, but generally the plate drops and he snatches the choice tidbits while scampering away from a well timed kick.
He still sleeps on my chest, but now that he’s 22 lbs, it’s much more painful. In fact, I think he’s caused oxygen deprivation several times.
I’ll tell more stories on Nimmy as we go, but I needed to write something. It’s been a painful week. Lex has had 103 fever, Xander is fussy, no one is sleeping. See ya.