Remember Clutch? – May 10, 2021

Gracie would happily play the role of “Cat”

Introducing Cat

“Whoa! When’d you get here?”

“This morning.”

“Why here?”

“I’m a cat. Do pretty much whatever the hell I want.”

“I can see that. That you’re a cat, I mean.”

“That doesn’t bother you? That I’m a cat?”

“Not particularly.”

“Why not? You’re a dog, right?”

“Point?”

“As strangers, we’re not supposed to get along. Sometimes not even after we’re introduced.”

“You haven’t bothered me yet.”

“I mean you’re supposed to consider me an interloper.”

“You interloping?”

“Got my eye on that cardinal over there.”

“Why?”

“Gonna catch it. Eat it.”

“Not much of a meal.”

“Times are tough. Do what you can.”

“Bum gig.”

“How’s that?”

“I mean, cardinals?  Mostly air. You go hungry much?”

“Sometimes.”

“There’s the bum part.”

“You know a better way?”

“Sure. Around here I keep squirrels and rabbits out of the gardens.  Warn when strangers come.”

“Sounds like work.”

“Mostly fun. I’d do it anyway. But the slick part is I get free eats.”

“You give up your independence.”

“Nah.  Work, as you call it all done, I do anything I want.  Like, maybe, chase a cat into the woods across the road.”

“You gonna chase me off?”

“Got more interesting things to do.”

“Like what?”

“See that squirrel? He’s forgot the gardens are off limits.”

“Why?”

“Squirrels are not so much forgetful as disrespectful.  Gotta keep them in line.”

“Not what I meant. Why is the garden off limits?”

“Espie doesn’t like them digging up plants, burying walnuts and…”

“What’s Espie?”

“Epsie’s the human here.”

“Your owner?”

“Never thought of that.  Not sure who owns who.  Don’t think it comes down to that.”

“Maybe you ought to sort that out?”

“Why?  Not important.”

“See we might differ philosophically here.  What does Espie do for you?”

“Food.  I’m guessing better than eating cardinal.”

“That’s it?”

“Pretty much. Keep squirrels and rabbits from messing in Espie’s dirt.”

“Ever catch one?”

“Yeah.  Why?”

“Rabbit or squirrel?”

“Both.”

“Hmm.  Eat them?”

“Too much trouble. Besides, Espie buries them.”

“Why?”

“Only real bone of contention we got.  He gets to dig holes. I’m not allowed.”

“So you have to dig up whatever to eat?”

“Absolutely not! First, there’s the hole thing.  Then, there’s better food.”

“Huh?”

“I play around in the yard and pasture.  Chase squirrels and such. Bark at odd people.  Espie sees I get a meal once a day.  If I convince him I been working hard, sometimes twice a day.  Good eats.”

“Sweet deal.”

“Better than squirrel.  Sure better than cardinal.  What do cats eat other than cardinal?”

“Why?”

“Not sure Espie has any cat food.”

“Why is that important?”

“You could swing a deal with Espie.”

“What swing a deal? Keep the cardinals out of his garden?”

“Espie has no grudge with cardinals.  Can you do moles?”

“Like mice.  I could, I guess.  Why would I?”

“Moles mess with Espie’s garden.  From under. I think it’s the digging part. You drop a mole or two on him he might be inclined to figure out cat food.”

“I’ll think about it. Be better than cardinal. And dependable.”

“Up to you.  Say, I got work to do. You’ll have to excuse me.”

“You’re not gonna chase me off?”

“Could. Don’t see a need.”

“Probably good you don’t. You’d have a rough go.”

“Eh?”

“I’m a scrapper.”

“Bub, I’ve…”

“You can call me Cat.”

“Okay Cat.  In the past I’ve…”

“What should I call you?”

“Unh, I’m Clutch.”

“Stupid name.”

“As good as ‘Cat.’  Anyway, I’ve tangled with racoons and woodchucks.  Good at it.”

“So you figger no need to get a bunch of your pals to help chase me off?

“Cat, even Festus up the street could take you on, all by himself.”

“Big dog?”

“Chihuahua.”

“Ha!”

“Not to be messed with.  Even Sinbad won’t scrap with Festus.”

“Sinbad?”

“Cranky German Shepard.”

“So you figure you can take me on? All by yourself?”

“That again.  What’s with you?”

“Could happen.”

“Look.  You ain’t done nothing.  If you do, you’re at a disadvantage.”

“Disadvantage?”

“With my responsibilities and my rights comes motivation you won’t have.”

“You that tough?”

“Ask Sinbad. Or the squirrels.”

“Festus?”

“I’m tough. Not stupid.”

“So we’re gonna get along?”

“You staying?”

“Might. Might not. Right now, that cardinal.”

“Wasting your time.  I know where a mole is.  I’ll show you.”

“I catch the mole, I’m eating it.”

“Show it to Espie first.  Long as you don’t have to dig to get it, you’re gold with Espie!”

“He eats moles?”

“Nah.  But he might consider you good to have around.”

“You don’t do moles?”

“Have to dig to get’m.  Espie is not happy about that. It’s the hole thing.”

“Okay.  Let’s see that mole.”

“Remember, no digging.”

“Not an issue.  I have this thing about playing in dirt.”

“Cat, we could get on, you know?”

“We’ll see.”

Published by spwilcen

Retired career IT software engineer, or as we were called in the old days, programmer, it's time to empty my file cabinet of all the "creative" writing accumulated over the years - toss most of it, salvage and publish what is worthwhile.

8 thoughts on “Remember Clutch? – May 10, 2021

  1. Sounds like a deal for Cat, what do you say, Espie, you gonna hire Cat? I would, but then again I am a cat-person, although I have cells from a dog’s nose in my own nose. Happened that when I was but a wee lad, my da took me in the car, no car seat in those years, and he had to stop suddenly and I went forward, face into the windscreen and broke my nose. He took me to the surgery and they replaced some of my broken cells with those from the nose of a blood-hound and that is why I can smell hundreds of times more than the average human…

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  2. Super conversation going on SP. Moles were the bane of my life in France. Hate the buggers. Dauphy wants to know if that cat has only one eye or is it winking at him?

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    1. Dauphy, Gracie was more or less featured in “Georgina and the One-eyed Cat” 6/19/2020. Alas in Creative Works, Short Stories, Young Adult and Children. None of which are on the site anymore for lack of interest. Gracie was not one-eyed, she just had the unsettling habit of staring at you with one eye, in the manner of letting you know she thought you full of beans. Tell Hobb I’m glad you two stopped by. Thanks.

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