It was sung in Dirty Dancing, so it must be true:
Love is strange.
You don’t need a degree in psychology to know that – just a little bit of experience with online dating…or a peek into any given suite at Tabby’s Place.
Odd couples abound. They abound so abundantly, in fact, that it almost seems unfair to call them odd.
Then again, when odd gets this odd, it’s hard to argue oddity.
We’ve had our Shakespearean romances, our Bogie-and-Bacall siblings and our bromance boys. Since Gus’s arrival (alas, rather less since his departure), Suite FIV has been one big, odd lovefest all the time.
But few pairings are as odd – or as outstanding – as Beecher and the bean.
It’s the stuff of a Lifetime Original Movie: She was an innocent farm girl…until the day she met the wrong tomcat. Suddenly Edamame was pregnant. Barely out of babyhood herself, she can’t quite be blamed for being an imperfect mother. Then again, Edamame didn’t just forget to bring cupcakes to her kids’ birthday party. She forgot her kids.
Actually, that’s not quite accurate. To forget them, she would have had to have been aware of their existence. As far as we can tell, she wasn’t.
As the story goes, little Edamame gave birth in a litter box…and left the five little blobs of babyhood right where they dropped, placentas and all. Was she scared? Did she think she’d just eaten some bad Mexican food? We don’t know.
Thanks to heroic human intervention, Edda and her beanie babies didn’t stay in that litter box. Our babymama and her three surviving kittens were Tabby’s Place bound. When placed with her hours-old babies, Edamame seemed confused and almost a little scared. There were no maternal urges on display here; just a timid teenage cat and three squirmy smidgens named for legumes. When Dr. C examined the new mom, she found that even Edda’s body seemed unprepared for motherhood: she wasn’t producing a drop of milk.
And so the beanie babies – Lentil, Garbanzo and Mung – went home with foster mama Dr. C….and Edamame got a second chance at a second childhood all her own.
Meanwhile, a wild and woolly coterie of cats was rambling up the coast from Georgia. Picture an old-timey carnival caravan, emphasis on the sideshow. But instead of gypsies, tramps and thieves, this Joadmobile was carrying cats…and rather than the nearest fairground, they were bound for glory Tabby’s Place.
You’ve already met the army of torbies, but Gerber and her girls weren’t the only Southerners about to invade. Along for the ride was a big-eared tabby named Beecher. (Full disclosure: actually he was a big-eared tabby named Toby. However, since we already had a big-eared tabby named Toby, his name wasn’t allowed into Tabby’s Place with him. I don’t know how he got the name Beecher. You will have to ask the person who named him. That person will remain anonymous, except that his name may or may not rhyme with Zance.)
While Edamame cowered in quarantine with a nasty ear infection, Beecher braved the coos and poking fingers of patrons at PetSmart. Edda wasn’t so sure about our affections. Beecher was gleefully, giddily loving, and seemed a sure bet for an easy adoption.
They were worlds apart, but neither one was going anywhere…
…until their journeys intertwined.
Call it odd, call it cute, call it written-in-the-stars, call it “Al,” if you want: whatever the words, this, my friends, is love.
Why wasn’t Beecher – an infinitely “adoptable” egg by any standards – scooped up while on display at PetSmart?
Why hasn’t Edamame – cuter than a duck in a hat and sweeter by the day – found her own fam?
Why do birds suddenly appear every time they are near each other?
It’s love. Odd, outstanding love.
With Beecher around, Edamame is braver, letting us skritch and stroke her teeny-tiny head. If you approach his little bean queen, Beecher’s satellite-dish ears will swivel towards you, eyes on the prize.
If they were human, these two would be very disappointed by the downgrade in species that high-school couple who’s just weird enough for each other. Consider Beecher the gawky, weirdly-good-looking guy who makes the fatal mistake of wearing patches on his jeans and playing his accordion in the lunchroom. Edamame, on the other hand, is the 4’7″ girl who wears her hair in front of her face like a curtain, then goes and surprises everyone by sounding like Celine Dion when she opens her mouth to sing. (Not that she’d sing My Heart Will Go On. Pffft. Edamame’s favorite musicians are Pantera, Anthrax and Paula Abdul.)
But together, these quirks find a home. More than just a safe place to fall, they’re each other’s teachers in how sweet life can be. The Beech will teach the bean chords on the accordion. (Can you play chords on the accordion? Now I need to know.) The bean will teach Beecher how to rise above adversity and leave the past behind – giving and accepting forgiveness, and living to sing about it at the top of your lungs and heart.
He’s giving her grace. She’s giving him glee. And they’re both forgetting the past.
I’d bet you 500 hills of beans that the best is yet to come for Beecher and the bean.
PS: Fear not, neither be dismayed: Lentil and Garbanzo are doing just fine. As a matter of fact, this week they finished their quarantine and bottle-feeding period, and they’re now living at Tabby’s Place full time. That is, until you adopt them. What do you mean you’re not looking to adopt a kitten? Really? Is that right? I pity the fool who doesn’t adopt a kitten after looking at this:
Or how about this?
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Yes, we know exactly what we are doing here.