A Development


“So…there’s been a development,” Cary said.

Whenever your girlfriend calls you with this sentence, the translation is crystal: “You might not be thrilled with what you’re about to hear, but I have prepared a detailed pitch for your listening pleasure.”

We had talked about getting a pet, and my preference was “down the line”, but this stray black cat was apparently very unhappy with my timeline and took matters into her own hands. She followed my girlfriend home for several blocks and refused to leave our stoop. This was Cary’s side of the story. I was in Brooklyn at the time, and my more skeptical theory was this feline was not following a human being, but instead the container of miso that Cary mentioned she had been holding for an upcoming dish.

Regardless of how this new guest ended up in our apartment, upon my arrival she presented her advanced friendliness and cuteness as her application for housing. Cary and I struck a compromise that blended her excitement with my logic; we would keep this pet, and name her Miso.

The weirdest part about adopting a mystery animal is never knowing about their past. Miso didn’t have a microchip and no one seemed to care that she was lost. But her coat wasn’t too alleycat-esque, suggesting she did live somewhere for at least a while. With other guardians. Called by a name that was certainly not Miso. I feel like this is the cat equivalent to the witness protection program.

Since we live in a very eclectic neighborhood with a lot of Greek, Italian, and Egyptian families, there’s a very good chance English is Miso’s second language, or third if you consider meowing a language. I myself definitely consider meowing a language, especially when it is used incessantly between the hours of 11 pm and 6 am. Miso proved herself to be a tireless orator the first couple nights of our new life together. In turn we demonstrated to her that we like to lock our bedroom door.

Continuing the contentious chess match between animal and human, Miso has now taken up the popular cat sport of furniture destruction and exhibited Olympic-level ability. I recently bought two hundred square feet of aluminum foil, a recommended scratching deterrent, but Miso has elected to remove it and use it as a chew toy. Our next move now has been to set out a bunch of little spray bottles near our furniture. I fully expect Miso to one-up this and begin to wear a poncho.

Despite this battle between claw and fabric, we are having a lot of fun with our strange little dog-like cat creature, and the only other hurtle left is to spay her. We are spending an inordinate amount of time researching New York vets and continue to encounter New York prices. I have come to the conclusion that the most economical option will be for me to enroll in veterinary school and perform the surgery myself.