By Etude, Archivist (aka Mr. Attitude, aka Pinky, aka Fuzzy Britches.
Before we carry on with this blog, let me just say that Rondo and I got lost in the boxes and bins of papers and a jumble of miscellaneous bits and bobs. What a mess! We have barely surfaced for the odd meal over the past year and a half while sorting, grouping and resorting. Once we hit bottom, it took much groping and grappling and rappelling to find our way up and out again. At one point we were stuck in Mousie’s closet after sneaking a peak in her diary. We almost starved to death waiting for her to leave the room again. *giggles* So, we apologize for not posting before this but it was nearly impossible until we had the full scoop. Here goes ...
Once FishTV was no longer the main focus (See Into the Archives II) Puss needed a companion to keep her occupied during Grammy’s long days away from home. Grammy's solution? A youngster cat - the perfect playmate for a young miss! Enter Malcolm, energy on paws - with a Kapow! Surprise! Look ma, I’m home!!!!
Let’s back up a little here. Weeks of planning went into this new addition to the household. Visits to the rescue, meet the kitties needing homes, see which one might be compatible with the house diva, make a decision, wade through the approval process, wait for the chosen one to complete his meds. In the meantime, there were long chats with said diva to discuss the ‘impending arrival’ all of which, as you'll see, were consummately ignored as insignificant trivialities beneath the concern of a self-proclaimed star or possibly misheard as ‘pending rival’. Whichever it was, things did not go smoothly. No it didn't!
Yes, despite weeks of planning and Grammy thinking the meet and greet was under control the whole “Puss meet Malcolm. Malcolm, meet your older sister Puss” was far from perfect. The cardboard carrier had been gnawed to bits on the trip from the shelter to home. Barely held together by one Grammy, two arms and a chin and containing a wriggling, squirming ball of fluff just itching to escape his confines. The old girl barely made it from underground garage to apartment. Malcolm burst out of the cardboard carrier as it was set gently on the floor.
Little Malcolm was excited to be out of his prizzen. Oh boy, oh boy! Yippee! Puss was not! Oh no! Not in the least was she thrilled and she made sure he knew it. Hiss! Swat! Zoom, leap, leap! Feisty Malcolm, light, agile and full of energy after being contained in a carrier for all of 30 seconds had sussed out the two bedroom condo sunken livingroom and all then levitated in a single swoosh to the top of the kitchen cupboards in 3 seconds flat with the not-so-agile, hissing Puss a distant 5 seconds behind.
Did I say Malcolm was feisty? Well, yes, he was a brave, yet wise little furrball too! He had to be to have survived frostbitten toes, tail and eartips through a freezing December of snow and ice with only the odd mole and bird to sustain him. Well, you think you're tough, Puss! You’re mush! Pudding! Mushy Pudding! Malcolm only put up with the bossy Puss for three days.... three! What he lacked in size he made up for in chutzpah!
Day 1 Grammy set food, water on the upper cupboards above the refrigerator and supervised him while he used the litterbox.
Day 2, although the reaction of Puss was decidedly chilly and the chase no less determined, Malcolm braved the litterbox on his own but continued to feed just beneath the ceiling.
Day 3, the little duffer decided enough was enough. Down he came, stood his ground, then challenged the house-princess/diva for a share of the territory. From thence forward their relationship was love/hate at best.
Malcolm loved her; Puss hated him – at least that’s how it was when Grammy was around. Hard to know what went on behind closed doors.
To say he loved her might be a bit of an exaggeration but he was willing to let bygones be bygones. Puss? Not so much! This little kitten was invading her territory... HER territory. HER home. A home which came with a fully equipped kitty pantry, provided Fish TV and 100% Grammytime, now was to be shared with a black bouncing, interfering ball of fluff – not edible, not able to open tins – in other words a USELESS bother!
Now, let me tell you what we discovered about those two. If Grammy entered the condo quietly as she often did, she could catch them yin/yang style on the bed at which point they would leap apart with a startled 'How did that happen?’ look from her and an 'Oh well, nice while it lasted.' from him.
So, back to those boxes... on further delving through the morass we found out Malcolm liked clothing.... yes, you heard it right. Malcolm liked to dress up. Malcolm was a clothes horse. Not to be confused with a quarter horse or a pony. No! But a veritable lover of clothing. Now don’t get me wrong. He wasn’t keen on being dressed in frilly dresses and bonnets – doll style. Oh no! He had taste – more in the line of Grammy's business attire – silk shirts, business suits and all the accoutrements that go beneath. AND for nightwear a soft t-shirt nightgown trimmed in lace suited him best. Even better if it had Scent of Grammy on it.
Of course, these were his business and nightwear but let me tell you... he was a many-faceted fellow. For visits to his country cousins, who were far from the bumpkin crowd there were plaid shirts and dungarees for daytime romps, bubble pipe and smoking jackets for those sophisto evenings and a night on the town required nothing less than spats, dinner jacket and trews à la Fred Astaire or bling à la Liberace! Oh yes, you heard it! Malcolm considered himself a showman and dressed the part! Loved to swirl around the parquet floors tapping his little toes every chance he got, tinkling said toes over the ivories. The whole shebang. By far his favourite daytime cat-about-house attire as he aged was his animal print smoking jacket. Reversible, no less! But for those other occasions he still insisted he be dressed appropriately.
Unfortunately, only a few photos survived our rappelling. Our apologies, but at least you can see him in his zebra and cheetah jackets.
What is it about clothing that is so enticing to cats, you ask? I can hear you...if not out loud at the very least it lurks in the nether-reaches of your mind.... I just know it! Yes, I do so don't deny it. Well, we aren’t all quite so enamoured of clothing. At least, not as enamoured as Malcolm. No siree bob!
We, the Mischief and Mayhem crew don’t care to dress. We’re twenty-first century cats, modern, hip and into the au fur lifestyle. We prefer to be unencumbered most of the time... but we have our moments. Yes, we certainly do. Let me say this... Put a piece of clothing on the bed and one of us is in it, under it or on it in two seconds flat. Freshly laundered and out of the dryer and it takes but a nano-second.
Now that is quite different from Grammy’s Malcolm. He actually loved to wear his around the house, morning, noon and night, awake or asleep. But by the sound of it, he was a pretty stoggy old duffer in his dotage, and you know what that's like. Yes, truly! Uh-huh. You got the picture.
Oh, the dryer has stopped. Gotta go! More later! Bye!