Friday, November 26, 2010

Requiem for a Cat

In 1994, my sister-in-law, Linda, queen of the animal rescuers, delivered to us a kitten. Someone had thrown it out into the parking lot of the office building where she worked. It weighed a little over a pound and most of that was ears. My wife was reminded of Ichabod Crane in the Disney cartoon version of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and that became his name.

After we moved to Colorado in 1996, my wife was having to go back to Houston to help take care of her parents. Ichabod became my friend then. He was never a stand-offish cat. He loved to be held and cuddled and would hunt you down if you weren't in his line of sight. He and our dog, Isabel, got along famously. Ichabod would let Isabel drag him around by his collar then would roundly bat her around the nose when she stopped. It was hilarious to watch.

Ichabod had not been himself lately and, on Wednesday, my wife found blood on his backside. She took him to the vet and found that his kidneys had failed and that he was very dehydrated. The vet gave him some antibiotics and we brought him home so we could discuss our options. We went back to the vet today and found that, even if we bought him some temporary relief, he would continue to go downhill and the treatments would be very stressful for him. We made the decision that we had to let him go. Ichabod McKinney, the coolest cat that ever was, died peacefully at 3:47pm, November 26, 2010.

I had never really been a cat person but I loved that cat. I miss him and know that we will never have another like him. I hope that he is happy wherever it is that cats go and has plenty of boxes to climb in and out of. Goodbye, Ichabod. I will never forget you.

Friday, November 12, 2010


I watched the news this morning. Big mistake. There was a fire in a townhouse complex in Webster, TX, a small town close to the Johnson Space Center. A woman lived there with her 4 children. She was able to get out with one child. Firemen rescued another. 2 died in the fire. She and the firemen tried to get them out but the flames were too intense. They had pictures of the two children - a lovely 12 year old girl and a 9 year old boy. All of the bystanders including the mother could hear them screaming for help. How do you get past something like that as a parent?

I did not know any of these people but I just can't get it out of my mind. I realize that things like this happen but I just don't know that I could live if it were my children. To make things worse, the boy that was rescued by the fireman is in critical condition and may die also. God have mercy on them all.