Remind me Again Why It’s A Wonderful Life…

Remind me Again Why It’s A Wonderful Life…

Why has Dave been posting so much, after announcing that he was going into an academic cocoon for a while? Well, I’ll tell ya. For the second time in less than a year, one of my cats fell desperately ill, and I’ve been up 24/7, alternately coddling her and trying to force-feed some nutrients into her body. But it didn’t work. I had to euthanize Simpson this morning, and man, it fuckin’ sucks, that’s all I can say…

I first met her when my friend Ingrid and I began looking for a place together–11 years ago–and, once we all settled into our wonderfully decrepit Verdun apartment,  it didn’t take long for an insanely strong bond to form. She and Ingrid never really hit it off, so I didn’t even have to beg for custody, when I moved in with my girlfriend, a year later. I’m not sure who was more obsessed with whom, but it was definitely a co-dependent relationship. She wasn’t always nice to others (that old question, “were you raised in a barn?”, actually means something… Simpson was–that’s where Ingrid got her from–and it showed!), and it was probably unwise of me allow a cat who made so free with her claws to chomp on my eyelashes all of the time, but it made her happy, and, miraculously, no one ever got hurt… She was famous for summoning food by way of her unique “accordion dance”, and my first clue that all was not right came about three weeks ago, when she stopped doing it (a half-full bowl was not nearly good enough for Simpson–she always planned ahead) I have no idea what it’s going to be like to sleep without her tonight, and I’m very worried about how all of this is going to affect Dashiell–they weren’t blood-relations, but she nursed him anyway, once his mother (Arizona–who still lives Ingrid) got tired of the whole thing (Zoner is a great cat, don’t get me wrong), and we’ve all been together for so long…

I walked home from the clinic, and, on the way, I ran into a nice guy from one of my seminars, my favourite student from last semester, and the bus driver who had brought us to the vet’s earlier this morning (which is insane, because I don’t normally see anyone I know on campus–there are 50 000 students, after all)–and each time I described what I had just been forced to do, it got worse… but at least I was in practice for this post–which isn’t nearly as glorious a tribute as she deserves, but what the hell? One thing about the death of a loved one–it makes it sickeningly easy for the survivor to hypostatize the relationship into something that could have gone on, perfectly, forever… The thing about it is, with Simpson (and, I suppose, with all beloved pets), I don’t doubt that this is true… She was still purring when they came in with the poison…



  1. That’s what we all want, Dave, to be purring when the poison comes. I think you gave Simpson a very good tribute, which I suppose is really the best thing you can do for her now.


  2. My only real complaint I’ve ever had with pets is that they have such short life spans that it’s almost inevitable that they’re going to die before you do.

    You have all my sympathy.

  3. Ah, that sucks — I’d give you a big old man-hug if I could, but as it is all I can offer you is this brief expression of my condolences.


  4. thanks folks…

    I’ve been up for 48 hours, but I managed to get all of my academic tasks done, and Wednesday is my day off!

    I may possibly be in a sane enough condition to post somethin’ tomorrow…



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