Murphy ... a Truly Fetching Cat
The movie just posted to the paper’s website (click here to watch) is a short starring Murphy, a young Siamese cat who lives with us. He’s just over a year old, has white sock-feet and the traditional yowling voice native to his breed was bred out when his sock feet were bred in — so he doesn’t howl, he squeaks. It’s a friendly squeak.
Murphy came to help us fill a lonesome empty spot left on the couch after the night Moses, our 13-year-old Siamese — we just called him a “mese” — disappeared.
He’d evaded my wife Patricia, scooting around her and bolting out the door last February as she came in with groceries. We haven’t seen him since. He’d pulled this sort of escape before, and we’d learned not to worry to much. If we were not successful in retrieving him right away, he’d be back later, pawing at a door and complaining in his raspy howl about our unfairness in letting him get out.
Only, this time he didn’t return.
I was in Southern Pines that night, and it was dark, cold, and rainy by the time I got home to help look for him. We called, we looked, we had no luck. No Moses.
“He’ll be back,” we said. “We’ll see him tomorrow.”
One time a few years ago Moses escaped and managed to get all the way over across the vacant lot to our neighbor’s barn and annoy their Chow. His blue collar with our land line phone number had pulled off, so we got the call. We found Moses far up a tall pine clinging to its trunk and swearing at that dog.
Unlike our granddaughter Brianna, I don’t “speak kitty,” so I am just guessing when I say he was using strong language. Maybe it just sounded that way to me. Maybe he was praying in a loud and angry voice.
We got Moses back that time, and he never went off “on his lone” for very long after that. Until this time. When he still had not returned after several days I put a classified ad with his picture in The Pilot, posted Cat Wanted fliers, knocked on the doors of strangers for miles around.
Moses is fairly dark brown, darker on top. He has blue eyes. He knows his name and — despite being a ’mese — can understand some English. He knows “Come here!” and “Roll over!” and does come when called and roll over on command whenever he feels like it.
We miss him, and we offered a reward and followed up a number of alleged sightings to no avail. A lot of very nice people tried to help us. No luck. No Moses, no more.
It was an empty house. Mark Twain said a home “without a cat – and a well-fed, well-petted, and properly revered cat — may be a perfect home, perhaps, but how can it prove title?”
Now, I should add that we still had the tuxedo kitty we got to keep Moses company after he took a liking to my sister’s cat when she came for a visit. Her name is Macy, and she talks up a storm. She asked a lot about Moses, but what could we tell her?
So we went online to look for a successor ’mese and found Murphy. He’d been rescued after his folks lost the home to foreclosure, and I drove to the verge of Charlotte to collect him. The information on the website where we found him said he could fetch, and he could.
He likes those little cloth mice they sell at Food Lion, the ones with tiny bells. Toss one this way or that, and Murphy will bound away at top speed, pounce on it, then come trotting back carrying it in his mouth the way a momma cat carries a kitten.
He’ll drop it at your feet, or beside you on the couch, look up expectantly and wait for you to toss it again. That’s what he does in the movie on the web: “Murphy, a Fetching Cat.” Hope you like his act.
And I hope somebody is keeping a well-fed, well-petted, and properly revered Moses somewhere, too. Sure miss that old fellow.
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