This is not so much a blog as just a funny story. I hope it comes out as funny here as it does in the telling of it. I think one of these days I am going to have to get my act together and do a comedy routine at an open mic night or something. So anyway, this story come up as the roommate and I were walking dogs and she was talking about mailmen and the dogs – how it is to be expected as dogs are territorial and the mailman is constantly warned and continues to invade.
Long long ago in a neighborhood right here in Lexington, I lived in a townhouse. The townhouse was occupied by several, including myself and my cat named Abraham. There were others, both a two-legged and a couple of other four-legged ones, but they are not really part of the story.
For those very few who are reading here, that may recall Abraham you know his personality, but those that do not a brief history. He was a humane society adoptee that I was given as a present. He was mostly white, with some black markings. And he loved to play, kind of rough. He really loved me but did not really care much for others more than a pet or two. Some of this was because some tormented him, but some of it too was he just loved to play rough back. Somewhere along the way, most friends began referring to him as the demon cat. For those that did know him, you will recall the way he used to run, jump on and skid across the slick polished coffee table and at the last instance jump out of his slide into my lap in my chair at the end – what a cat.
The townhouse itself is a bit important to the story, or at least the lay out thereof is. The front door, which was almost never used, opened into a roughly four-foot square. To the left was a doorway into the living room and straight ahead was stairs to the upstairs. The front door opened onto the common court-yard. The back door, from the kitchen, opened into a private fenced area that was mostly full of wild flowers to avoid having to mow. The gate in the back opened into the parking lot so while living there we almost never used the front door – except occasionally when entertaining I am not sure it was ever opened to be honest.
The title had a mailman right? Enter the mail and hence the mailman. Instead of having the typical little mailbox beside the front door or even a stock of boxes in a central location in the corner, all of the front doors had mail slots. The mailman made the walk up and down the court-yard, pushing each slot open and sliding the mail into the floor, a mere drop about a foot and a half.
At some point in the middle of the one summer that we lived there, I started getting notes occasionally in with the mail that stated things like, “Get the cat under control,” and, “Cat has got to go.” To which I was wondering who in the neighborhood was confused. Obviously someone had seen a cat outside in the courtyard doing something and had assumed, mistakenly, that it belonged to me, or at least us.
A few short weeks later I had some time off between the light graduate work and the part-time schedule I had at the office at the time. At about 11:40, while I was just reading or something, the cat, sitting next to me wakes up and immediately bolts to the third step up. He then turns to face the door…
A couple of minutes later the butt wiggle of impending pounce started slowly and worked to a fever as the eyes got as big as saucers. Then I heard the step of the mailman outside the front door, the click and slight creak of the slot being opened and BOOM!!! The cat shot from his perch like lightning, immediately grabbing at the mail but more particularly trying to get the fingers that pushed open the mail slot depositing that same mail. This was followed by something close to, “Damn cat!”
Of course this was on my part a huge “ah-ha” moment along with some very hardy chuckles. I was over the next several days and the one thing I can say in regards to the regular mailman is he was prompt. Of course so was the cat. Everyone of the following four days I observed nearly the same behavior starting at about the same 11:40. The one day the mail was few minutes late, the cat started to look bored and stepped away – only to quickly hurry back to his post.
Later, I did apologize to the mailman and tried to break Abraham of his habit to little success mind you. The mailman took it stride, even had a laugh himself when I described it from inside the house. Wish I had the forethought then (and equipment) to catch some video.
Anyway, as I thought on this in the retelling early, it occurred to me that Abraham was nearly 3 then and that was 17 years ago. Which means he is almost assuredly no longer with us, having crossed over. I am still not sure how exactly it happened, but despite him being a gift to me from her, the ex took him and I did not see him but one time after that. Probably gives some insight to the reason I was so stubborn about a horse over a year ago now that I think about it.