Our good friend Carl Ortona sends this harrowing tale:
Story in basics, our cat becomes friends/lovers (in a non-sexual way b/c one is neutered and both are male � but, well, like Dick Cheney, I bear a burden leavened by my love of the bastard we took in off the streets a year ago �.) with another two neighborhood feral/wild cats, both become habitu�s because they recognize value of a free meal when available — Friday afternoon, C came home hysterical b/c as she pulled into the driveway, she spotted one of the cats as it limped up our driveway missing its tail but with grisly spine intact — 1) maybe neighborhood sadists, but they are now in school; 2) somewhat more likely, run over by car; 3) even more likely, caught in rat trap or somesuch under someone�s house and ripped its own tail off — upshot —- have spent last 48 hours trying to 1) find it; 2) when spotted, trying to catch it and get it to vet; 3) found it tonight under the house (which is up on blocks b/c you don�t do basements down here) � so with 8 -12 inches clearance, found it with a flashlight, crawled the fifty to sixty feet to where it was hiding/waiting to die, dragged it by the scruff of its neck to within 10 feet of the edge of the house, and it then proceeded to rediscover its will to die alone and bit and scratched the hell out of my hands and arms —- have already scoured with alcohol and antibiotics and am taking a shower to get the mold and dust and dirt off of me — this was about as intense as it gets unless the feral beast had hand grenades and a Koran in its hand and the combat ceiling was 10 inches, which it was. I actually like the little beast, and like Nietzsche, despite my desire to punt it every time I see it because it reminds me of the little Lord Faunteleroy of the cat world, I care for it (sometimes) more than 99% of humanity — then I remind myself that Nietzsche was only right about a few things (unfortunately, loving brute animals, even feral cats might be one of them) and with a wife who is a legitimate copycat of the above sentiment, duty called.
Off to lick my own wounds; despite cheeky attempts at humor, nothing is sadder, more pathetically gut wrenching, and, well more natural, than a dumb animal which is suffering, and most likely dying, by itself, and viciously fights off any efforts to help because it doesn�t know any better since it is blind to good intentions and a helping hand — such are animals, and hence the image of a �wounded animal� — I know all that, but it didn�t stop me from crawling under the house — I might make a good father after all.
I am sure you will, sir.