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Meow Meow, Thank you, Meow: A poignant letter from a cat.

Dear Guy Who Rescued Me From The Bushes That Day,

How are you doing? I don't know if you remember me or not, but I'm the cat who you rescued from the bushes in the park. You were with your friends and it looked like you were in the middle of something, but you stopped and picked me up and took me to the animal shelter. I still remember that sweater you wrapped me in. It was so soft and warm. I even remember the label. It said that there is cashmere in it - 10% or maybe it was 20%. I hope that you got it cleaned without any trouble. It's a nice shirt.

You probably wouldn't even recognize me now. I put on weight and I have a slick, new collar. I'm living in the suburbs in a 2500 square foot mediterranean. Two bedrooms up, two down and three and a half baths.

I was adopted by a really nice family. My owner is in marketing. The wife stays at home and they have one little girl. It's a good gig. I play with the little girl for about an hour each day and the rest of the time, I'm free to lick myself all over, take naps, stare at the wall all afternoon or whatever. The little girl pulls my whiskers sometimes but she's just small so I don't mind. They gave me the name "Justin Timberlake." I have no idea what a Justin Timberlake is, but the family gets a real bang out of it when they call me that, so it's all good.

Sometimes, just before shopping day, they give me the dry cat food. It's good and it's shaped like little fishes. That always cracks me up. :)

But the rest of the time they give me the premium stuff from the can. I still haven't figured out exactly what's in it that makes it taste so good. I want to say that it's a hint of Greek saffron but we went to a party at the Sheffields' house the other night and they serve a Tawk-Mishti Mangsho (sweet and sour mutton) with turmeric that tastes very similar. So I'd almost bet that it's turmeric. Whatever it is, it's quite a treat for a cat like me.

When you saw me I was probably at the low point in my life. I was only a couple of months old and I didn't know how to fend for myself. My mother got squashed by a cement truck so my brother and I were on our own. My brother was thin because I always made him suck the hind tit. After mom got mowed down, my brother got sick and passed away. I always wish that I hadn't been so greedy and that he grew up stronger. I guess that I didn't know any better but still... Anyway, I just wanted to tell you how grateful I am to you for saving my life.

I was really lucky. After you took me to the animal shelter, my future was still uncertain. I met a lot of hard cases in that place. There were cats who had it a lot worse than I did, like my cage-mate, half-tail Tommy. He has seen things that no cat should ever see. But through it all, I kept my fur clean and kept my hope alive that I would see better days.

Every morning in that place, they unlock the main door and release a dozen cats or so. Some of those cats go to "the parade" - that's what we called it when they displayed cats for the nice people who were looking to adopt. The cats who didn't go to the parade got put down. We called that "taking your ninth." None of the cats who left in the morning came back and we never spoke of them again.

The night before I got out, ol' half-tale was talking crazy. He was saying like he was going to choke himself on a fur-ball because there was no chance that he would ever go to the parade. But, I'm still optimistic that Tommy got out somehow.

I don't want to take anything for granted now and that is why I'm sending you this e-mail. You could have walked by me. I'm sure that my meow was barely audible - weak as I was. But you stopped and took the time for me.

I have some pleasant news to tell you. I'm going to be a father! There's a cute little Persian who lives down the road and we've been going around together for a while. She's a nice bit of fluff if you know what I mean. :) But my owner doesn't know about that. Ha Ha!

She's going to give birth to a litter in a few weeks. Some of them would be mine too if it wasn't for the animal shelter's sterilization policy. Bloody hell! Anyway, we're going to stay together and I'm going to raise the kittens as my own. We set up a little place under an abandoned car. It's not much but we're happy. I'm going to name one of the kittens after you. "Guy Who Rescued Me From The Bushes That Day" is kind of long so I'm just going to call him "Guy." But when he's old enough I'm going to tell him all about you. And your memory will live on.

I really hope that you get this e-mail. I don't know when I'll be able to use the computer again. Actually, my owner doesn't allow me to come in the computer room but I gummed the lock - it's something that I learned from some cats on the inside. Maybe my owner is afraid that I'll attack the mouse so he doesn't let me go near the computer. Ha Ha! (Sorry, that's some cat humor coming out there.)

Well, that's about all that I have to say right now. Please remember the scruffy little cat that you rescued from the bushes and the great life that you gave me. I'll always remember you.

Sincerely Yours,

Justin Timberlake

Copyright 2006 Ecdysiast