To Whom it May Concern
Some of my human fans have expressed their wishes to read the story of my life. This has happened on several occasions, so here goes. Inspiration hit me on the head right now like a divine hammer, so I’m scribbling this down before I come to my senses again. I don’t enjoy remembering yesterdays, you see. Living in the present is my bowl of Friskies.
My story is of an unusual kind, but then I'm no ordinary cat either. You see, I’m a special cat with a past! That’s what my Mom declares, and I seem to notice just a tiny bit of proud satisfaction in her words. Happiness too with my progress and development during the past few years in her gentle loving care.
These Moms, whose primary purpose in life seems to be that of acting as loyal servants to their cats, always hit the nail right on the head. They should be given medals on Independence Day I say, and sent an invitation to the President’s Ball on December the 6th, just like all other prominent personages in Finnish society. We’re still waiting for that to happen.
I was born in circumstances not known to my present family. My early kittenhood years were a mess, me living together with a bunch which was not exactly what you’d call the Brady-kind. Not that they were evil, but as very thoughtless peeps they could be described, come to think of it. But the fact of the matter is, I am a forgiving soul, so I guess everybody else would say I had a life from hell back in those days.
Now you really got me going! My pride and joy, my beautiful tail, he’s living a life of his own right now, as I recall how we all lived back then. Let me tell you friends that in that tiny house it was crowded, oh brother, was it crowded! Way too many brats about for my taste. Every one of them screaming their lungs out, and that would go on from dawn till dusk. The adults had their hands full with those little rascals, so nobody cared much for me. Moreover, the lady of the house was constantly pregnant and seemed to suffer a lot from this.
It was probably because of this anguished woman that the decision was made that I was to be left outside in the yard for the night. Both she and her husband had some explaining to do. Why did they do that to a kitten, the inquisitive neighbors would ask them. “Well,” they’d reply, “this is the only sensible thing we can do, since the cat persists in peein’ an’ pooin’ on all our carpets. And that damn cat has been operated and all! And we had to pay for it but it just won’t work!”
I’ll rest my case soon and leave it up to you, my friends, to be the judges. What was yours truly supposed to do under those circumstances, since I had no cat-toilet? You may ask anybody with a brain in his furry head what he would do! My bladder and tummy could have exploded. So a cat’s gotta do what a cat’s gotta do and they complain. Geez!
I learned to live my lonely nights and days outside both in summer and winter. Those years we had very cold winters with temperatures of minus fifteen and worse. But my fur coat grew thick in the cold, and I had spunk enough for a dozen cats. I got this bad reputation for being an odious homeless alley-cat who was a threat to the lovely wild birds and those cute little mice. I plead guilty in this case, since I was hungry. I managed pretty well on my own after all, even if I was very young then. And those years, they sure had their own special charm. I won’t deny that.
But aw, weren’t they lovely each time they arrived, the mild summer days and nights, after the ordeals of winter were over! I used to sit daily on top of a giant boulder in one neighbor’s yard watching people passing by walking their dogs. I’ve always kinda liked dogs, even if they’re not as smart as us cats. But this is common knowledge. Sorry doggie owners! Oh well... Sometimes a dog would spot me on that boulder and what a racket that would cause! I would smile back at the furiously drooling beast, just like a cheshire cat, safe as I was up on my boulder. But I could never understand what was the matter with them dogs in the first place.
In that yard there were also high pines which helped me climb to the roof, whenever I wished to see all the comings and goings in the village. I’ve always been a very curious cat, and my patience is limitless. So I would just wait and wait, and before too long something would nearly always happen, something unexpected and juicy.
To give you an idea what it’s like, let me tell you a story! One fine afternoon I was up on a roof doing my usual job as private eye. Opposite my roof was a garden and in it there was this young girl busy soaking up the lovely sunrays, topless, and almost bottomless too, if you ask me. Oh, it was quite innocent. She was keen on getting an even tan, and I could appreciate that. But can human men act decent? The reply is no. Tomcats will be tomcats! There’s no avoiding that fact and I’m sure you all agree that tomcats always have an agenda.
So this tomcat from next door, one of the workers on that building-site, happened to spot what he considered delicious naked skin in that orchard. That instant he made up his mind to go do some serious bird-watching. So he hid behind some hawthorn bushes. From there he could see the chick well. The boobgazing went on even after another tomcat joined him. “This sure beats work,” they chuckled and laughed out loud. But then came the boss. The two tomcats seemed to have an awfully good explanation as to their being there in the first place. Relieve themselves, of course. What else would they be doing? “Okay then, get it over with!” said the boss. Them two fumbled nervously with zippers or buttons or whatever, the result being that the first tomcat pricked himself good on them thorns. And I won’t say where, since I’ve been forbidden to talk dirty. He let out an OUCH! which could’ve woken up the dead and also caused the topless bird to flee from the spot inside her house, more or less naked. That was really funny. And served those tomcats right! So I say: “Bless them roofs! They’re the most exciting places in the whole world.”
Over the years I finally came to a conclusion. I decided to find myself a new and better home, so I could sleep my nights inside a house in a real cat-bed forever. I knew exactly where I wanted to move: the house in the garden with the boulder and the pines.
During the dark winter nights I used to work my magic on my Mom-to-be. I would jump up on her window ledge when it was real cold and a full moon out. She couldn’t sleep then, since she knew I was there, so she came in her night-gown to check. And oh yes, there was this black cat, staring with hypnotic yellow eyes at her face, until her tender heart bled for me. “Oh no, there he is again, that poor homeless cat, alone out in the cold,” she would whimper to her husband, my Dad-to-be, who would mutter: “What’s the matter, dear? Come back to bed! I have an early start tomorrow. To the ministry, dear!!! The ministry!”
I always had to grin a little, so satisfied was I with my performances during those decisive nights. I knew that divine justice would prevail also in my case. And so it did!
Finally, the DEAL was done! I now had a new home and a household with a real Mom and Dad. I knew right there and then that I had it made for life! Good staff, hmmm yes, I mean my folks of course, excellent grub, bed of my own and climbing-tree in my room and ...surprise, surprise! A sand-box, which I learned to use to everyone’s great satisfaction!
So I have a good life now, my friends! A huge house with a roof and a woodland garden to explore by myself and neighbors to go an’ visit, when I feel like meowing. You see, I quite like meeting little kids despite my childhood experiences. And when I get enough of them I just meow ciao and am on my way.
I have nerves of steel, hmm... except when other cats come into my territory. Those times I go bezerk. I’m just loud-mouthed, that’s all, but my Mom gets angry at me even then.
Sometimes I go off on my own on long expeditions to nearby woods. On the way I stop by at my old friends’ places, the most ferocious doggies’ houses. They sit tied up with nothing fun to do all day, and I go by meowing howdy to them and ask them how life’s treating them nowadays. They drool and growl, but I’m a nice cat so I smile back and wish them a lovely day, before I leave them. But that really ticks them off! The whole neighborhood echoes with them dogs barking and carrying on. I will never learn to understand dogs, that’s for certain.
My Mom has had complaints, which is difficult to understand. You see, they say I tease their cats as well. I see it this way: it’s charity on my part! There are many fat so-called city cats (even if this is the countryside) who sit inside their homes all day long and are never allowed to go out, so I climb a tree near their windows and meow hello to them cats. I can tell you they seem depressed those poor cats. And their owners blame me for visiting. Geez!
I’m sorry to say it, but I feel it’s my duty to inform all real cat lovers that this kitty life style is highly recommended by the Finnish Humane Society. They say it’s the ideal and also the one and only humane form of living for any cat. Well, the chairlady should know best, for she has about one hundred cats, all snug together in a small city apartment. They are either starin' at each other or sleepin' or eatin', and they don’t ever go explorin'. But I'm backwards and tend to disagree with her, which probably means I’m not normal, just a happy cat. Yippeee!
I’ve also got myself another interesting occupation lately, I mean a real job this time. I am inspector of all the building-sites in the neighborhood and that gives me plenty of satisfaction, since them houses don’t seem to ever get finished. That means I won’t be unemployed in a jiffy!
I do my rounds regularly every day many times over, and meow with the builders who are conveniently having some kind of break every single time I show up. There are a long list of them, a few examples being: coffee breaks and beer breaks and fag breaks and lunch and supper and so on. Sometimes they have an extra sausage for me, which I always devour with much pleasure, since my Mom says I’m not supposed to eat processed food with salt in it.
But there are moments when I just like to chill in someone’s lap. And my Dad occasionally gives me an Indian head massage. He’s allowed to do so, since he’s got a diploma to prove he knows anatomy enough to distinguish between head and butt. Just kidding, of course. He even finds a third eye in my head. Imagine that, friends!
Actually, my Dad’s a very talented massage therapist. He works nights and occasionally on weekends. Go check his website. Just google for massage therapist in Espoo, and you’ll find it. There! Now I managed to squeeze in an advertisement, and have great expectations of getting something extra delicious to eat. Life couldn’t be better! And I’m in my prime too – probably 15 years young - and in excellent health.
So I think that will be all folks for now! Cheers all of you, who seem to be concerned, and rock on mates!
Mikke Kangas, The Cat with a capital C
Inspector of building-sites
Private investigator, freelancer