Good-by to our housemate…

My mom has been hovering over Tiger for the last month. She would get so excited when Tiger ate a few bites of food or jumped up to the couch. Yesterday, Tiger stumbled as she tried to navigate from the living room to her favorite spot in Cathy’s closet. She couldn’t jump anymore.

So Cathy bundled up Tiger in her trusty backpack (“Tiger hates carriers”), grabbed my leash and we caught a cab to the vet. The tech asked if I wanted to say good-by, but I declined. Tiger’s been living on borrowed time. I haven’t teased her in ages.

Tiger has been a part of Cathy’s life for over 14 years and Cathy was feeling really sad. “Worse than losing Keesha,” she said.

I think I’m worth ten cats, but that’s another story.

The good news is I scarfed some leftover canned food that Cathy bought for Tiger’s sensitive palate. Yum!

The bad news is we’re probably getting another cat. The ditzy Creampuff gets lonely. I’d like to show her what lonely really is but my mom is in a fragile state. My job is to help Cathy keep some perspective on what’s really important, like treats and toys.

Birkenstocks bring back memories…

Yesterday I blogged about Mom’s defeat (or should I say de-feet) by a blister induced by an over-zealous pair of running shoes.

Today my mom’s Birkenstocks are getting into the act and rubbing against her toes.

My mom Cathy has very bad shoe karma. That’s probably why I’ll never wear booties, unless I become an Alaskan sled dog. With a mom who takes cover at the sight of a single snowflake, that scenario is not likely.But the Birkies brought back memories, she was telling someone on the phone.

“People used to think I was a hippie,” she said. “I was never a hippie. Back then I wore make-up and dress shoes.”

That’s hard to believe. But I do believe she never did drugs. In this house, all the prescriptions have my name on them.

The only drug in our house is catnip. My mom loves to say that.

“Back in the 1980s, I was living in San Francisco and going to grad school,” she was reminiscing. “I was in one of those funky studio apartments in between the Tenderloin and Pacific Heights. One day I hired a handyman (recommended by our building manager) to put up screens for the cats and add a shelf. As he leaving, he said, ‘Oh, I found your stash.'”

I just imagine my mom freaking out, even back then. She was terrified some former tenant had left a pile of drugs and would either come back for them or send over the narc squad.

So I am not surprised to hear she demanded, “Show me.”

And then…

“Ohmygod…you smoked the catnip!”

The handyman (who had a very colorful past involving all sorts of things that would be considered edgy even in SF) turned bright red. He said, “Well, it wasn’t a very good high. But please don’t tell anybody.”

Of course my mom told everybody, but they didn’t run in the same circles, so it was no big deal.

Frankly, I’m surprised my mom didn’t demand a replacement for the smoked catnip. At that time she had just one cat, Kitty, a sweet but rather neurotic calico whose size earned her the “Goodyear” nickname.

How do you explain to your cat, “Your weekly fix has just gone up in smoke?”