Sunday, March 26, 2017

Part 3: The other voice

Once upon a time, while I was sleeping, a black cat fell onto my chest. 

I woke up screaming. You would have too, I believe. No one expects a black cat to fall onto their chest while they’re sleeping. At least not the first time it happens. After that first time, of course, it’s different. It is less of a shock and in time, can even become a matter of routine.

The human sternum can break under thirty pounds of pressure. The cat weighed twenty-eight pounds.

While it was happening, I did not know it was a black cat and I did not know it weighed twenty-eight pounds. I did not know my sternum might almost have been broken. Something big had slugged me in my chest while I slept was all I knew. That was enough.

Screaming and flailing and maybe – just maybe – crying out “Help!”, I leapt from the mattress, tripped over something, and fell into a pile of junk on the floor.

And now, finding the light switch, well, that was an adventure, for I did not know where it was I was and I suspected my attacker to be close by still.

I slapped at walls.

The light switch was sticky and that could only mean I was in Jamie’s bedroom. Everything in Jamie’s apartment was sticky and if you were to touch anything – anything at all, really – you’d come away with your palm encrusted with carpet fuzz, cat hairs and rabbit hairs, human hairs and cigarette ashes and some plastic beads.

O, it was a nightmarish place!

The light revealed a giant black cat rearing up to hiss at me but no Jamie, and I struggled with the mattress to pull it out from beneath the shelf from which Zeke had dead-dropped onto my chest.

Voices came in through an open window and one of them was Jamie’s, drunken and flirting. The other voice I did not know, though I am good with voices. They were out on the balcony, talking of the films of Jean-Pierre Jeunet but I knew Jamie’s flirting voice, and this was the one.

Then Zeke attacked my leg. It was inevitable.

Couldn’t Jamie hear me screaming?


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Part 1 is HERE.
Part 2 is HERE.

References from older blogs:
- Zeke was known as Stagger Lee in a Fascist Dyke Motors post called The Disappearance of Stagger Lee back in December 2011, when he ran away from home. He was never found.

- Zeke was the “fat male housecat” in an Adri’s Sanitarium post called Four-Legged Foes in June 2008. I never shot Zeke, though – that is something only Adri would have done. Most of the rest of this one, although too wordy, is true. 

38 comments:

  1. I enjoyed Delicatessen and City of Lost Children.

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    1. I love "City of Lost Children."

      Of course, "Amelie" and "Mic Macs" were good, too.

      But years back, my brother came over and dropped off a DVD for "City of Lost Children" without any clue into what it was. The opening scene with the Santa knocked me down.

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  2. Cats. They're cute and all, but I wouldn't trust any of them. Chaotic neutral they are, doing as they please. You're here to tell the tale, so at least you survived, but at what cost?

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    1. I was attacked many more times by Zeke over the years before all was said and done.

      And by said and done, I mean that he ran away.

      I might be a cat person. But I have no pets now, so I'm a cat person from afar.

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  3. After reading this, I described it to my wife because she was curious about what I was reading, and I made sure to mention that if she ever used her flirty voice on anyone else but me, she'd get a 30 lb cat straight to the sternum. She nodded, and said, "Likewise." I nodded back. It's good that we understand each other.

    I'm still intrigued. Who kills whom? Are you writing this from the grave? And what kind of Jean-Pierre Jeunet films are we talking about, here? Something like Amelie or something like Alien: Resurrection?

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    1. I am glad I can do a tiny bit to improve your marriage.

      Since it was Jamie doing the talking on the balcony, I'm guessing that they were talking about "City of Lost Children" and "Amelie." No one talks about the Alien film and "A Very Long Engagement" wasn't out yet.

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  4. CRaze this pic is good.I love this story and that black cat.oh my cats r thin due to paucity of food .When i get a job i plan to grow 20 cats and sustain this cat family until my death ha ha.story is progressing in a interesting manner.I would wait for the end .

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    1. House cats would eat you if they thought they could take you.

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  5. My cat cat used to try to kill me this way all the time when he was young. Now he is older and doesn't have the strength. Now he just tries to kill me on the stairs.

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    1. The stairs are dangerous even without cats!

      Cats are adorable, they sort of provide company, and they are probably trying to kill us at all times.

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  6. My cat's only problem is that he always wants to dig is paws into my chest to get comfortable.

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    1. Eek. That sounds painful even if you are awake and expecting it!

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  7. I've never been one to be enamored with cats. One jumping on me would definitely kind of flip me out.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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    1. Not a cat person?

      I'm not a huge fan of dogs. Never had one growing up and the one my parents got when I went to college would bite me on a regular basis when I came back on holidays.

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  8. Having ten cats I am aware of this kind of behavior. Fortunately, none of them are over twenty pounds. There is another move they make that you should be aware of. I call it the ballderdash where the little darlings leap onto your crotch and then off it again before you are able to scream any meaningful curses. At least until afterward.

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    1. 10 cats. So you live with cats, then, you don't "have cats." It would be more like they have you.

      I joke that when you go from 1 cat to 2 cats, it isn't like doubling your number of cats. Each one adds to the politics of the house exponentially.

      Ten would be interesting...

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    2. Interesting AND entertaining. 7 cat boxes cleaned daily and paper towels by the case. I think they sometimes barf just to get a reaction.

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    3. Amazing. I have a co-worker who has six cats. They turned the bathtub in their extra bathroom into a big litter box.

      I suppose it's just easier that way.

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  9. When one has a cat one becomes accustomed to a certain lack of sensitivity in their behaviour. It's all about them.

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    1. That is worded perfectly.

      Even when they appear affectionate, it's usually a trap.

      Delete
  10. Now I want to get a cat and name it Stagger Lee.

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    1. I never managed to get my ex to use that name, so I switched one of her cat's to Stagger Lee for purposes of my old blog.

      I don't hold much power in the world, but I can rename anyone I want for blog purposes!

      Delete
  11. I love cats! They hold special souls! Great story!

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    1. Thanks. I think I am slowly becoming a cat person as I get older. It took a while.

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  12. You must have a tough sternum. Does it take heavy blows frequently?

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    1. I figure that because the cat has four feet, I actually just took four simultaneous 7-pound blows.

      I am not a boxer, however, I do bump my head on things a lot.

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  13. As Galileo discovered, the speed at the point of impact is as important as the weight. A cat that belligerent belongs in a barn. Let him eat rats.

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    1. He feel from quite a ways.

      He got worse as he got older. By the time he ran away, right years after this, he was on female hormones to keep him from attacking me.

      I wish I were joking about that.

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  14. Intense! Did the cat help or hinder?

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    1. Thanks, Alex. Jamie always insisted he was helping. Even when he was, say, sitting on the laptop keyboard while she was typing.

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  15. Replies
    1. Haha, hi, John. I don't know why my posts go that way so often.

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  16. That is one huge cat! The worst I've had is claws massaging my scalp in the middle of the night.

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    1. I don't think any of Jamie's cats ever liked being around me enough to do that.

      There was one that used to lovingly head-butt me.

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  17. 28 pounds of hissing fur can purr quite the trauma into being, especially when assisted by stickiness and confusion. I hope your sternum got some therapy.

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    1. I survived. He was the worst cat I've ever known and I miss him a lot.

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  18. Much less than a pouncing cat could wake me up. Often my dreams/nightmares? awaken me. That does provide a way to remember them but typically not for long. Were you in a good dream at the time of the attack? Did the cat come back in future dreams?
    I'm not much of a cleaner but that place sounds even too disgusting for me.
    Oh waking up not immediately knowing where I'm at has happened numerous times.

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    1. When Jamie and I got a place together, my dad helped us move. He saw this old place of hers and suggested, "Let's just burn the place down and start over from scratch."

      I don't generally remember dreams although, now that I am drinking less, it happens from time to time.

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