The Feline Version of Zoolander

Today we unexpectedly had to say goodbye to our smaller cat, a former feral lynx point Siamese mix named Squish. He had abrupt catastrophic renal failure, and may have had cancer. It was an absolutely heartbreaking start to the day. He’d been with us for 15 of his 17 years and we have deep love for him. He was sweet, soft, pretty with beautiful blue eyes, easily confused, and not particularly gifted with intellectual ability. Because of this, we often called him the feline Derek Zoolander. And in honor of him, I decided I would share one of the most mind-boggling stories of his time with us, which beautifully captures what kind of cat he was.

Originally published elsewhere on Feb 15, 2007.

In a corner of our office sits a pair of ankle-high lace-up stompy boots. They are sitting there because I’m getting rid of them and haven’t yet bothered to retrieve the “get rid of” bin from the shed.

Earlier this morning, Squish began playing with the laces of one of these boots. He often plays with boot laces, so this was understandable. However, I generally prefer that cats not play with stringlike things, so once I realized he was doing this, I called his name and stood up to go over to him and remove the laces from his possession.

As he generally does when approached by a human while he’s playing, he started to scamper away. However, he had apparently gotten one of the boot laces caught in his collar or wrapped around his body somehow, and thus the boot came along with him as he scampered.

This, naturally, upset him, and so he tried to run away from the boot that was chasing him. And of course the boot just chased him faster.

He ran down the stairs in a blind panic, the boot bumping along behind. He scrabbled madly on the hardwood floors downstairs, desperate to escape the evil footwear bearing down on him, but it remained in remorseless pursuit. He ran back up the stairs, his lug-soled nemesis still on his trail, thumping evilly in his wake. He finally ran behind Spouse’s dresser, where the boot got caught because it was too big to fit and pulled free of him.

We stood dumbfounded watching and listening to this horror unfolding before us.

And then we laughed our damn asses off.

Squish is under the bed now, and we fully expect he will remain there for at least the next eight hours or so. I do of course feel terrible at how scared he is…but not so terrible that I fail to find this completely hilarious. Yes, I am an awful person. Everybody knows this already.

The boots are both back in the corner of the office, sitting peacefully, giving no indication of their true cat-torturing nature. However, I’ve tucked the laces in so they can no longer be pulled on by curious, boot-naive kitties.

A representative photo of Squish.

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