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February 1, 2007

TT: For ailurophiles only

A friend writes, apropos of yesterday’s posting about my late, lamented cat Blossom:

“Exasperated affection” is a great way to describe the way most people feel about their cats, dead or remembered, but my feelings tend more toward the unconditional. Somewhere along the line (he's 14 now) my own cat traded in his cat diffidence for a desperate affection. He used to be desperate and disappointed and diffident all at once. But in his tottery old age, he decided to love me. So he follows me into the bathroom and follows me out, and if I spend too many hours out of the apartment , he shows up at the door with a look of such despair—you know, the way humans look after they've been crying all day—that I never want to leave again.

I used to feel embarrased about how much I adored him back—he's only a cat, I'd kept thinking, but it wasn't what I felt. I felt that I was was reaping the pain and benefit of his having traded in a chunk of his catness—why he did or how, I don't know; that it was possible to love him without exasperation, and so finally I let myself.

That’s more or less how I felt about Blossom.

Posted February 1, 2007 12:00 PM

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