A year of Jack
Last week I was going through files and found photos of the vet bringing Jack the Brat into my house. That was Aug. 5. It's hard to believe I've had this little guy for a year.
Last year, just before all the hurricanes started to hit, he turned up at the vet's door. She was preparing to go out of town. She was new in practice and didn't have much place to leave him...but she remembered I'd just lost a cat a few months ago and would be an easy touch.
She was right.
Tiny little Jack, barely old enough to be weaned, came with a torn-up face and a punctured eyeball. Something had seriously gotten hold of him. With antibiotics, prayer and Jack's natural resiliency, he recovered, and was able to keep the eye. The only sign left of Jack's early trauma is a black spot on his eye.
He fell in love with Betsy the dog, as soon as he came into the house, and Betsy mothered him and took him on as her play buddy. They still tear around the house, playing chase. I gave up long ago worrying about him getting hurt. He's the one who starts the games with a 45-pound dog.
Jack's still a small cat. I don't think he's grown any the past two or three months, so I imagine he'll stay small. But he's maybe six pounds of muscle, bone and claw.
Elvis, the big black-and-white cat, (try 20 pounds to Jack's six) has always been a big baby, one who used to run away crying when Jack would jump him. Now, though, he seems to enjoy a bit of roughhousing, and I'm treated to a nightly Clash of the Titans on the living room floor.
Jack's my little sweetie. He loves on me and loves for me to rub his back. He's always right there, in the middle of whatever I'm doing.
For all his swagger around the house, he's terrified of anyone besides me, and hides under the bed when visitors come in.
Jack is the brat who loves to tear up cardboard boxes, and tear into unopened bags of cat food. He's the one I hear getting into things in he middle of the night, knocking things over just for the fun of it. He's the brat who tries to crawl into the refrigerator with the shrimp I put there, but won't eat it when I offer him one; he's the brat who tries to help himself to what's on my plate.
Jack's the brat who weaves in and out between my ankles, the one who tries to stop me from going out the door.
Ah, Jack, you're such a brat. And you're a cutie-patootie.