Last night, moments after I had just drifted off to sleep, the husband woke me up.
"She took it off," he said.
By "she" he meant the little cat, by "it" he meant the Elizabethan collar she had been fitted with to compensate for her newly removed female parts. Well, not really to compensate, more to prevent her from gnawing the stitches away so that she'd need to have a second operation to fix the first.
For good and, mostly, for bad, the husband can hear a pin drop out on Odenplan, the big open plaza outside our window. Somehow, in his sleep he'd heard that the little cat was doing something she wasn't supposed to.
Unfortunately, her owners and our current lodgers, A., the TV producer and C., the fashion photogapher, were sleeping way out in the far suburbs somewhere, so we felt an obligation to try and get the collar back on her by ourselves.
Thirty minutes, three puncture wounds and four scratches, one dollop of catfood and a bloody towel later, the score was little cat: two; Francis and the husband: zero.
Looking at my sore hand, I wondered about that ancient Internet axiom - "every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten" - and thought to myself that there are simply not enough people fulfilling their onanistic obligations.
At 2 a.m., we called A., who told us she would be right over.
So, the husband and I sat in our bathrobes in the dining room, with the chairs pulled out this way and that, an empty cat dish, and two sleeping cats.
"There's something wrong with that cat," the husband said.
When A. arrived a half hour later, with C. at her heels, she picked up the little cat, sat on a chair, and slipped the collar on without even the smallest bit of protest, not even the tiniest softest miaow.
"Beyotch," the husband said. "You should call her beyotch."
The Swedish word for the day is kattunge. It means kitten.
- by Francis S.