My cat went out cutting capers all night, which had me worried to death.  I don’t let him outside on purpose, but sometimes he darts between my ankles while I’m on the way out the door, and poof!–he’s gone, off like a shot.  Maybe it’s silly, but until he comes back inside I fret and worry.  What if he gets into a fight?  What if he starts running with a bad crowd?  What if he decides to be Huckleberry Finn and never come home again?

Well, he came home this morning, and although I was in no mood to lolly-gag in bed all day, he was, so that’s what we did.  He curled up in a very efficient ball and slept, on my chest, like Morpheus himself.  We stayed that way for hours, until I broke the news to him:  “Look, I have to go.  I’m going to have to move you, so prepare to hate me.  Okay, commence hatred on my mark:  three, two, one.”  Sure enough, he did, but it didn’t last very long.  He conked out again after about eight seconds–a very brief but, I assume, satisfying hatred.

When I was nine years old, my maternal grandparents came down for a week-long visit.  Toward the end of their stay, my grandfather settled himself into the recliner in our den, with a copy of Time magazine.  My sister’s cat, Misty, promptly settled herself onto my grandfather’s substantial belly, and went to sleep.

My dad was at work, but the rest of us–my grandmother, mother, two sisters and me–went off shopping.  Shopping for what, I don’t remember.  My job, in those days, was standing by the entrance to the store (usually Lerner’s, the Popular, or the White House) and holding their purses until they were done with the seemingly interminable process of trying things on.

Anyway, as we were leaving, my grandmother said to my grandfather, “We’re going shopping.  Would you like to come with us?”

“No, thanks,” he said.  “I’m pretty happy here with my cat and magazine.”

I was looking over his shoulder at the time, and I can tell you that the magazine’s left page was two columns of ad space, and the right page was just one full-page ad, so that just leaves one column of actual content:  not much to read.

We came home about four hours later (four hours of purse-holding for me, thank you very much), and my grandmother looked at my grandfather in his continued repose.

“Old man!” she cried.  “You’re still on the same page of that magazine” (which, indeed, he was).

“Well,” he said, “I was afraid that if I turned the page I’d wake the cat.”

My kind of man.

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