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There's A New Cat In Town

I’m afraid that our cat’s got
some competition in our household now; what has been up to this
point a one-cat home has suddenly become the residence of two

Of course, one of them is my daughter.

I’m not sure where she got this idea, but she absolutely
loves to crawl around on the floor and pretend she’s a cat.
She’ll crawl all over the house, saying, “Meow! Meow!
Meow! Meow!” And just in case I don’t get the message
from that, she’ll periodically stop, pet herself on the back,
and say, “Soft!”

I’ve learned my role fairly quickly;
it’s simply to say, “Hey, there’s a Maddie Cat in
our house! Come here, kitty!” and wait and see if she deigns
to crawl over to me, at which point I may pet her – gently.
Other than that, it’s not really a participatory sport. Much
like owning a real cat, come to think of it. She takes a long while
to tire of this, at which point I’m guessing her knees give
out and she stands up and continues to meow while gesturing to the
floor as if to say, “Picture me crawling here.”

I should clarify that this is a non-participatory sport unless
Madeleine’s playing with her friend Naomi. Naomi’s a
good-natured kid, willing to go along with just about anything, and
she quickly figured things out and began crawling like a kitty as
well. So then we’ve got two large cats underfoot, happily
crawling everywhere and mewling away.

Which wouldn’t be a problem except that they don’t
realize they are supposed to be indoor cats, not outdoor cats. Just
the other day Maddie decided she had to be a kitty, right
there in the playground. So she hit the ground and didn’t
look back, never mind the fact that the ground was filthy and oh,
yes, wet. Naomi quickly followed behind, leaving Ingrid and me to
chase after them and try to get them up. The little minxes were
very clever, though; they crawled under low parts of equipment,
facilitating a need for at least one mommy to get down and crawl
behind them. Who says toddlers are stupid.

Of course, I’m a conscientious mommy and tried to get them up
right away.

But of course, I’m also a practical gal who realized a little
video footage of this would go a long way in future blackmailing
years. So click on the image on the left to catch my street kitty
in action.

The result of such outdoor crawling was, of course, that both girls
had filthy knees and mittens and shoes. This stressed out my little
neat freak (see yesterday’s entry) so much that she spent the
rest of the time saying, “Mama! Shoes dirty!” I
lovingly pointed out she had no one but herself to blame and would
have to go home before she could get cleaned up. So my girlie was
caught between the agonizing choice of getting cleaned up, or
staying in the park a while longer.

Her decision? Through some labyrinthine logical deduction, she
figured that since she was already dirty, she should just do the
Kitty Crawl some more, even though we’d previously agreed
that from now on she’d be strictly an indoor kitty. God help
us if she becomes a lawyer.

Of course, I heard about the dirty shoes for the entire stroller
ride home, all afternoon while grocery shopping, and all evening
whenever she looked at her shoe cupboard. I had to actually show
her the cleaned shoes the next day before she’d shut up about

Did I mention the Kitty Crawl video? Please watch it. A lot.
It’s the most revenge I can get right now.


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