Dear Tangerine


We need to talk.  But since you choose to flee the room every time I enter as if I were some kind of angry torch-bearing villager, this note will have to do.

Here’s the thing, Tangerine, I mean you no harm. In fact, I like you.  I like you a lot.  I mean, if I didn’t would I put up with your paranoid bullshit?  Cut me some slack.  I’ve saved your life twice now.  Admittedly, being trapped was no picnic.  I apologize for that, but my intentions were good.  You were young and I figure you’d get over it eventually.  I’m sorry if you didn’t like the shelter I sent you to.  But, it wasn’t easy finding a no-kill shelter that would accept you, what with your feral background.  It’s not my fault you chose to spend your time there in a paper bag whenever someone came into the kitten room to select a kitten.   I guess you missed the New Kitten Orientation where they explained that when someone came into the kitten compound that you should act cute and friendly so someone would fall in love with you and take you home.  Hiding in a paper bag, really Tangerine, is kind of cute at first, but as a long term strategy?  Not so smart.

Yet, when the shelter said they had to give up on you because of  your shyness and your chronic upper respiratory thing,  what did I do?  That’s right I came and fetched your sneezing introverted ass and brought you into my home.  At the time I already had three cats which, in my mind, was one cat too many. And you made four!  Seriously, I had to take a lot of ribbing about being a cat lady well on my way to being a cat hoarder.  But, you liked my other cats and they accepted you, so I figured I’d keep you since the only other option was freeing you again, and what with those weird sneezing fits you used to have, throwing you back outside in January didn’t seem like the kind thing to do.

When I moved a few months later, apparently my new house didn’t please you, so you choose to slip out a window one night.  I was so worried about you.  You just vanished for a couple of months.  Eventually, you started making yourself known around the times I fed my other ferals.  I thought you seemed a bit lonely.  Your former feral family no longer accepted you.  But, this was your choice and I could respect that.  You’d never go hungry on my watch.

Then you went and got into some kind of fight, didn’t you?  Yup, that’s life out on the streets.  I watched to see if your wounds were going to heal properly.  They didn’t.  So,  I catch you and off to the vet we go.  Look, I was hoping for a quick lance of the wound, maybe a shot of antibiotics and you’d be back on your way.  Nope.  I had to keep your indoors and tend to your wounds for two weeks.  My original plan was to re-release you after you mended.  You were the one who opted to move in under my bed.

So here we are one year later.  You seem pretty comfortable and confident in the house as long as I’m not on the move.  But, when I get up and move around the house, you start doing that annoying fleeing thing.  Really, it’s not all about you.  I just want to get up and go to the bathroom.

Things are weird right now with Alaska gone.  We all have to adjust.  I know you adored him, so did Sasquatch and I.  We’re all a little freaked out.  But, with time we’ll regroup.  You might want to consider befriending me.   Or not.  It’s up to you.  I’ll be here if you need me.


12 responses »

  1. Dear Tangerine;

    Daniel was born feral — I lived out in the woods for a while and I don’t know how either of you did it. She’s really very nice, LB, and she could use some attention right now. She doesn’t mean to move fast. Try a little harder, OK?


  2. Dear Tangerine;
    Yer probably wondering why U R gittin this note from me and even more oddly ~ how itz possible 4 U to be reading this but trust me – stranger things have happened.

    First of all, if you know whatz good for you yuel piss on the couch – thatz rite – piss on the couch. C, yer human, LB, is feeling ignored and so she needs you 2 git her attention. They is nothin like a little cat piss ona couch to get a human’s attention ~ you probably missed that in kitty orientation too.

    Well thatz all fur now ~ oh and cough up a hairball every once in a while too – that would be great.

    with love from a concerned citizen

  3. My Molly is like that. For the first year we had her (we rescued her) we never saw her. She would only come out to eat or drink when everyone in the house was asleep. Eventually she allowed my youngest to pet her but only pet her…not hold her, just pet her. Usually, when someone walked in the room, she’d run and hide in the most impossible places. She’s all fur. She only weighs about 4 lbs but it’s all fur. She can sneak through anything and everything, even a space only about an inch and a half. That’s just enough. Now I have her here with me. It’s just the two of us and she doesn’t freak out as much but there is still NO HOLDING. I can pet her if I let her sniff my hand first but I can never, ever hold her or pick her up.

    I still have hope, though. I know. I’m hopeless.

  4. You are such a good kitty mama. Not crazy. Not even close to a hoarder 🙂 She appreciates it in her own, I am sure. As you said, things are a little weird right now with all of you missing Alaska.

  5. Brilliant stuff!

    He he, i think i’m like Tangerine. I can picture the bewilderment of many at my own hiding under furniture and other paranoid scuttlings.

  6. This made me laugh, cry, and… wow… create metaphors of all manner of behaviors, cats AND humans.
    You are so creative!
    Even in the aftermath of your recent loss, you heal.
    Thank you.

  7. I have to agree with amuirin. My girls have reached the point where I can reason with them, where you can have a conversation about behavior and have it make a difference. Hopefully Tangerine has reached that point, too. You seem to be so patient and understanding. I’m sorry to read about Alaska. Bless his heart.

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