Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Goodbye, Sugar

In August of 1990, my two roommates and I decided to get a cat. I was dispatched to the task, as I was the only one with any previous cat experience. I'm also one of the softest softies ever, so when I went to the pound to pick a kitten, I immediately started sobbing since I couldn't take them all home with me, and I picked the ugliest, scrawniest one in the bunch. I figured no one else would, and I'd definitely be saving his little life. (I had no idea this was a no-kill shelter.)

We agreed to the name Tristan, although I really wanted to name him Bagheera after the panther in the Jungle Book. He wound up becoming completely my cat, though, and would go for rides around town with me in my car, chase squirrels in the yard, sleep next to my head, and play around with all the neighbors. When he got a bit older, he moved in with my parents, who had a big house with a huge yard and other cats as opposed to my dinky apartments with allergy prone roommates.

Tristan turned out to be a panther, after all. A gorgeous hunk of cat, and quite the hunter too. He was super loveable and liked to play with everyone. He especially liked to take people's seats once they had been warmed up for him. You just don't argue with a 20 pound cat. Even if he does love the Cocteau Twins.

Whenever I would come home, he would be sitting at the door waiting for me. If I called the house, he would come distract whoever was talking to me. He always knew. I would walk in and lie on the ground and talk to him, and he would lie down next to me and sing. Well, purr really, really loud, and kind of chirp. We had little conversations.

Last night when I got the call, "He's not doing good, maybe you should come home..." I hopped into my car to do the 101 mile dash. I didn't make it in time though, he was gone. I'd just missed him. So here's to my big, handsome man, Tristan.


when darkness falls
on Summer's end
so in your absence
i shall begin
when Darkness falls the race iz done
and Love lives not
when Hope is gone
goodbye, sugar...

(Twilight Singers)