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Guest Writer

Maybe it's genetic

by Diana Daniels

hen I was very young, perhaps five years old, I wanted a cat very badly. My mother, evil bitch that she was, said no.

So when she would leave the house at night to go bar-hopping, I'd sneak out into our suburban neighborhood and try to "borrow" one of the local cats. I'd lure one out from under a car, put it in an abandoned shopping cart someone had left on the sidewalk and move on, hoping to eventually fill the cart with kitties.

Unfortunately, the cats had different ideas and never stayed inside the cart for very long. After luring half a dozen cats to me and having them all jump out of the cart as soon as they were placed inside, I finally decided to just settle for one cat, and took him home.

When I heard my mother come home I hid the cat in my bedroom closet, where he proceeded to meow constantly. My mother, flinging open my bedroom door and hearing the meowing, asked, "do you have a cat in here?" "Nooooo," I said, trying to make my eyes look big and sincere.

When I was 10, I was playing with another neighborhood cat. My mother called me in for lunch and I locked the cat in the crawl space under our house. I was planning on coming back for it, but I completely forgot.

I was crawling around under the house several months later when I found the skeleton. The poor thing had died by a small vent that was covered with wire netting. It was hoping to somehow get outside where the sun shone through.

As an adult I lived in a series of apartments, all with a "no pets" rule. So when my (now ex-) boyfriend asked me to move in with him, part of the attraction was his pet cat, Buddy.

By the end of our two-year live-in relationship, I loved Buddy and never wanted to speak to my boyfriend again. (That's another story.)

I had to move out and I realized how parents must feel regarding custody of their children. I couldn't take Buddy with me. He was happy with my ex – that was his home. And I was moving into another one of those damned apartments with "no pets" rules.

When I finally bought my first house, I proclaimed it "pets allowed." Now I have two kitties: Ophelia and Cordelia.

Cordelia eats human hair and throws up. She eats cat food and throws up. She eats her own vomit and keeps that down. When she isn't throwing up or eating vomit, she plays with Ophelia by batting her tail.

Ophelia responds with immediate and furious retaliation, bringing to mind the phrase "reap the whirlwind." Ophelia likes to watch TV when it is turned off – I'm convinced she sees dead people.

When I try to analyze how these furry leaches made me their slave, I can't really explain. My father has 10 cats and my older brother has seven, so maybe it's genetic.

But maybe my friend's theory about cats being aliens using mind control on us to be their servants is true.

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