A Present from Muffy

Muffy has long white hair with streaks of gray and black. Her eyes are blue and alert, though she is never mean. She is mom’s cat and sleeps at the foot of their parents’ bed. Her favorite game is to chase rabbit’s feet and, once she has caught them, drop them in her water bowl. They have a half dozen rabbit’s feet around the house so they can trade out wet ones for dry ones, jingle the key chain portion to get her attention, and then toss them for her to chase.

This particular morning, the young man is reading the paper and about to head out to school. His mother wanders in from her room still dressed in a light robe. She is yawning and looks particularly tired.

“Doing okay there, Mom?” says the young man.

“Oh, just tired. Had a real peach of a night.”


“Well, you know how Muffy likes to bring us presents?”

“Sure,” says the young man.

In addition to rabbit’s feet, Muffy was adept at hunting roaches, field mice, lizards, and other small creatures.

“Last night, maybe 2:30 in the morning, Muffy suddenly hops off our bed in a hurry. I’m too tired to think much of it. But a minute or two later, she hops back into the bed. Instead of lying down, she’s hopping around the foot of the bed, pawing at the sheets, pouncing all over my feet. So I got bugged and said, ‘Stop pouncing on my feet, Muffy!'”

“Wonder what triggered that,” says the young man.

“Well, after a few minutes of this, that’s what I started wondering. And then it occurred to me, and I jumped out of bed and switched on the light and woke up your father. And sure enough, I was right.”

“About what?”

“Muffy had caught and proudly brought us a roach. But she didn’t kill it. She was playing with it in the bed. And it wasn’t one of the small ones. It was one of those giant, flying, two-inch roaches, and it got under the blanket and into the sheets.”

The young man laughs and says, “That’s disgusting.”

“Yeah, you can’t just go smash it because then it’s all over your sheets. So I had to pull the blankets and sheets off the bed and flick it onto the floor. And Muffy caught it again, and when she finally dropped it one last time, I grabbed it with a piece of toilet paper and flushed it.”

The young man shudders. “I’m not sure I would sleep the rest of the night.”

“Well, yeah. So now you understand.”

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