OK, this is long
We had a cat named Kitty-witz (I guess he was Jewish). This happened...
Kitty-witz's latest trick -- which fits in perfectly with his general pattern of stupidity -- is getting stuck in trees. He is an excellent climber, but only in the UP direction; this week we have had to retrieve him twice. (Note: I am a human, at a not-as-agile-as-I-used-to-be-36-yrs-old and 210 lbs. He is a 4 lb cat with tree-climbing genes and claws and everything. What is his confounded problem?)
The first time, he got stuck in a medium-sized fir tree, fairly climbable and not that high. Hannah (that's the wife) spied him on a branch mewing plaintively and looking pitiful and bewildered.
As previously mentioned, he is not that bright, so a confused look is fairly normal for him, but this time he appeared even more perplexed than usual.
Anyway, to make a long story short (too late), I clumb the tree, stuck him in a pillowcase, and climbed down. All was well, wife and kids were grateful, kitty was safe.
Then last night he did it again, this time in a tree with no branches lower than about 20 feet. He didn’t come in for the night, and Samantha (the daughter) got us out of bed about 11pm to say she had just heard Kitty-witz outside. Once again Hannah found him clinging clumsily to a small branch and appearing completely baffled about how he had gotten there.
After trying to lure him down, we tied a tall ladder partway up the tree, I climbed up, and tried to get him to jump into a box held up under his branch. It was not a big leap, but he wasn’t having any.
During this time, Mommy and Samantha offered questions and commentary:
“What are you trying to do, Daddy?”
“Do you think we should just call the fire department?”
“Daddy, don’t hurt him!”
“Can you reach him? It looks like he’s right there. Are you sure you can’t reach him?”
“Watch out. Don’t fall.”
“Are you sure you know what you’re doing? Maybe we should just call
the fire department.”
“Don’t scare him.”
“Aw, poor Kitty-witz. It’s starting to rain and he’s out here all cold and everything.”
Rattling a bag of treats failed to move him; choice words had no effect. Attempts to knock him off the branch into the box also failed, but they were fairly satisfying to make.
Eventually I lashed another small stepladder onto the top of the big ladder and tried again. Still couldn’t reach, so I rigged a safety line around my waist -- like the people who climb telephone poles, except that I was shirtless and barefoot and wearing baggy PJ bottoms -- and I shinnied up the last two feet until I could grab Kitty-witz by the scruff of the neck and pull him off the tree.
As soon as his claws were pulled loose from the bark, he stuck them into me, which I thought an ungrateful position to take.
I should make a brief confession here. Whereas:
- we were getting ready to be on a houseboat for several days in August (Hannah's family reunion); and
- we wanted to try a little water-skiing or other sun-sport-type-activity; and
- we live in the Pacific Northwest, where “sun-breaks” is an actual term used by weather forecasters; and
- consequently we were all whiter than chalk,
I thought it would be a good idea to spend a few minutes on the cancer couch before we left. Long story short, I fell asleep in the tanning booth and got a spectacular burn all over.
Kitty-witz rode down with his claws hooked into my sunburned chest, until a short way from the bottom where I pried him loose and attempted to hand him down and behind myself to Hannah. He pulled out little chunks of bright pink flesh all the way down my body, finally attaching all four claws to my rear end.
As Hannah and Sam laughed themselves silly, I held on to the ladders and Hannah pulled Kitty-witz down the rest of the way with his claws hooked in my pajama bottoms, pulling them down to my thighs and exposing my entire sunburned butt to the world.
The girls laughed for a long time.
I put the ladders away and went to bed.
Tomorrow I’m going to buy a dog. The End.