Monday, June 14, 2010

Berdugo


We lift a page in history to reveal how mean we used to be.

I was barely ten years old and already had this aversion to cats. They sneaked inside the house and ate leftovers on the sink. They threatened the chicks and ducklings I kept (and massacred wholesale, without realizing it) and their feces and urine putrefied our clothes left to dry in the backyard. This strong distaste for felines was reinforced by our neighbor's snooty cat, which showed strong derision whenever I stroked its fur. It ran away at the mere sight of me, and in return I plotted to hit it with a stick (or stone) when I catch it sleeping in the laundry area.

A kitten's nose turned red with fresh blood after hitting it continuously with a plastic hanger. The kitten was up for adaption and I asked the old lady if I could have one kitten and make it my pet (since I can't get the neighbor's cat to like me) The old lady who was desperate to make the litter disappear (short of throwing it away) gave all the kittens to me. When I got home and tried to feed them, they snarled and growled and hissed whenever my hand tried to get close. With my infinite impatience and lack of understanding of how cats behave in the presence of strangers, I grew tired of their insolence and began beating them to submission.

I returned the kittens to the old lady when my rage had subsided.

Pushing the neighbor's snooty cat over the ledge and into the kanal without being caught by the neighbor was my favorite game. I found extreme fondness in tossing stray kittens into the same muck to let it swim until the disgusted neighbor rescues them with his sharp eyes glaring at me. I once saw a door mouse, dipped into the same sludge by some good-for-nothing tambay and fed it to a feral cat. The deadly fodder was too much for the pussy's digestive tract that it rejected it by throwing up and the regurgitated remains of the mouse was left to rot right outside the steel gate of an abandoned house.

The list of crimes against kittykind (which include random hitting, slapping and kicking of a stray cat whenever I spot them on the road) would go on if not for a tabby in school who was introduced to me by an elderly nun. His name was Putot and while waiting for my Piano teacher to finish her class, I would stay at the nun's office to play with her cat. Putot was very friendly. He would let me stroke his fur even on the day we first met. He was an old cat. Unfortunately, I've heard nothing from him or his owner after my Piano lessons were abruptly terminated.

Several months later, a half-blind, tri-colored stray cat became a regular fixture at home. As to how he became endeared to us, I cannot recall. All I remember was the old saying about tri-colored cats being lucky house companions, and that one morning he was in the kitchen and waiting for my mom to drop some pieces of bread for him to eat.

Putot changed my attitude towards his kind. The stray, tri-colored cat was the beginning of my fondness towards the animal. He was our first feline pet - the new line of cats who would become residents of our old house after an aunt accidentally drop her kittens in a water container which led to their deaths.

The tri-colored tabby left without being given a name. I guess it was his nature to roam the neighborhood than to be stuck in a home with a master to please. In his absence, something has changed. A year before leaving grade school, a girl friend gave me a striped-orange kitten that was given to her by her teacher.

We gave him a name - Kulit - for being too stubborn while in transit from his mother, to the school where he would meet my friend and into our house where he was finally adopted.

His companionship and hardheadedness was something I never felt from the ducklings, quails and chicks that I raised. He was our pest controller, and at times even ate his bounty by my bedside. He would constantly demand our attention, and did drastic measures to get noticed. (such as spraying every corner of the house with his pee or napping on top of the TV and blocking the screen with his tail while everyone watches a news program)

He went missing though after a few years. Kulit slipped under the box on his way to a veterinarian. He was never found and we moved on with our live.

Yet as a parting gift, for all the days he stayed with us.

His sweet and warm nature had won me over. my aversion towards cats has finally disappeared.


15 comments:

thecuriouscat said...

I'm not a cat person too ironic ano, pero ito gamit ko na name hehe

~Carrie~ said...

I don't like stray cats (but I like the bred ones). Minsang may naligaw na kuting dito sa apartment at "inampon" ito ng mga nakatira, liban sa akin. isang gabi, pinalabas ko ng bahay, as in binitbit ko palabas at palayo, pero nakabalik nung umuwi yung mga housemates (sumabay sa kanila). aba, ang pusa, kinilala akong kaaway. tuwing lalapitan ko, galit - yung hiyaw na galit.

sumunod na bases, dinadampot ko sya pero pumapalag. gusto akong kalmutin. sinuwerte ako na sa paglabas ko ng pinto bago pumasok ng opisina, lumabas ito ng bahay (at galit pa rin). eh ako yung huling lumabas ng apartment at maghapon kaming wala sa bahay. ayun, di ko na uli nakita sa loob ng pamamahay. mukhang nakahanap ng ibang pepestehin.

harsh ako noh?

Ronnie said...

When I was a kid, there's this one time that I put a stray kitty inside a big pail of water. Haha. But then, inalis ko din siya dun. Weird lang. =D

SOLTERO said...

hehe nung bata din ako, tini tirador namin mga stray cats haha, kasi naman pag gabi ang ingay lalo na pagnagse sex sila haha :P

i had a white persian cat here, named it Dude...naglayas nung lumipat ako ng apartment :P

Eternal Wanderer... said...

i hate pussies. period. lolz

Caridad: you discriminate against pussies! wahahaha

~Carrie~ said...

Sorry naman, Ternasia. Yung stray cat, ewww, lamang-siopao lang kaya sila. Chos!

anteros' dominion said...

sabi na nga ba

underneath that angas mode

and supladito attitude

there lies a sweet good natured fellow

hope to read more of these side of you..the one that i saw the first time we met...

Désolé Boy said...

sori i don't like cats..hehe

but this is nice post!

Carabrant said...

My iGoogle page has a "Funny Cat Photos" widget hehehe.

Anyway.

I like cats when they are just kittens. They are more playful then. Come adulthood, they become snobs, acting sophisticated and demure. Haha!

Nimmy said...

awwwwww. such a sweet post. tatawag na dapat ako sa PAWS nung binabasa ko 'to, pero sweet naman pala ang ending. hahahaha

Mu[g]en said...

Nimmy:

Kung alam lang ng paws paano ako maging sadista sa hayop eh pinuntahan na nila ako.

Shoti2:

You will love them better when they become adults. They are low maintenance (they steal the food when you leave them starving) They are user friendly (they will just get your attention when they need something) They destroy the furniture (because they need to de-claw once in a while) and most of all, they choose their masters (and diss the rest)

Desole Boy

Naku cat person pa naman ako. :P

Mu[g]en said...

Eric:

Don't be too trusting. Kindness is not my favorite trait.

Ternie:

You're a dog person and we all know that. Hahaha!

Kaya ka kinakalmot ng mga pusa eh.

Soltero:

Ang cute naman ng name. Yung pusa sa bahay ngayon, weird ng pangalan. I'll introduce her sometime in this blog.

Mu[g]en said...

Ronnie:

Sarap maging sadista no? Hahaha!

Carrie:

Magmaldita ba naman sayo yung pusa eh. Kung ako yun eh hinampas ko ng walis tambo. Lol.

Curiouscat:

Strange enough, hindi ko naisip na mahilig ka sa pusa. Hahaha.

DivineMadness said...

Meow! One of my fave cats before was also named "kulit". Naglayas on his first bday. sad :(

Meow!

Mu[g]en said...

DivineMadness:

Meow to you as well sir! Sounds like we have something in common. Pleasure to have you around. :)