something tells me that
perhaps the wrong cat
drank the rescue remedy calming drops
from the water bowl.
one is facedown in a bowl of seashells
while the other, (my intended target)
is busy outside
standing up on two feet
looking in at me through the window
and meowing loudly.
“mixing one’s wines may be a mistake, but old and new wisdom mix admirably.”
happy all american pet day!
During President Kennedy’s time in office 21 animals lived at the White House.
Their pets included dogs, horses, and an assortment of smaller animals.
“animals are such agreeable friends – they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.”
credit: john f. kennedy presidential library and museum
when glenn had to go through painful surgery
and was at last home again
tiny sweet olive
approached him gently
touched her head to his
let him eat their favorite food first
and moved quietly
next to him
at his special place by the window
just lying there
for hours on end
while he recovered
the quiet comfort
of their tender friendship.
“besides love and sympathy,
animals exhibit other qualities
connected with the social instincts
which in us would be called moral.”
― charles darwin
when i was 7 or 8 years old
my father came home
from his job at the ad agency
with a new pet for our family
and it just happened to be a baby alligator.
he was not more than 9 or 10 inches long
in a small box and cute as could be
i was really excited
and pictured myself playing with him and his friends
(just as in the vintage postcard above)
i thought he would just fit right in
with my family
in our colonial house
in the suburbs
though, there were a few ‘glitches’ with this scenario.
- my family had no idea how to choose or take care of a pet.
- i had no idea how to take care of and raise an alligator.
- my father had become the owner of the alligator through some sort of crazy ad campaign, so it had probably been through a rough time in its life already.
- i felt sorry for him and he looked scared.
- i was determined to mother him and make him feel better, though no clue how.
- i had no idea what to feed an alligator, so i fed him lettuce and water and thought my sisters would help me catch flies for him.
- he already had a name given to him by the agency – “jerry lewis”
- my parents pretty much left me on my own to figure it out.
- writing this out, it all seems even crazier than it was.
i had my alligator for a few days and i was very excited to have my friends in my class meet him. when the big day came for show and tell, i carefully carried him in his little cardboard box, climbed onto the bus, and jerry and i headed off to school. i remember it was a bit chilly that day, but i didn’t know anything about natural alligator habitats, so i didn’t think much of the weather. i was bursting with excitement.
i put my box on my desk and when i was called up for the big reveal, i opened by box, only to find that jerry lewis had passed away on the way to school and was now stiff as a board. i couldn’t believe it and i felt so sad for him. looking back, i’m sure that any baby alligator given away in a promotion, was not long for this world, but i had hoped that we would be together for a long while. my teacher was very nice about it, and helped me wrap up his box and i rode home that day on the bus with jerry, ready to have a funeral for him. i learned so many life lessons from my short time with jerry lewis. – r.i.p.
(not me, or jerry, but how i imagined us at show and tell)
” i go where the action is.”