Some scholars graduate.
Earlier this week, we honored the smart set of students who have advanced to alumnae/i status. Once a Tabby’s Place cat, always a Tabby’s Place cat, so they’ll continue to root for the home team and wear their TPU sweatshirts…but essentially, they’ve forgotten us forever, happy in the haze of forever love.
But then there are those stellar savants who just can’t quit us.
For every thousand coeds who gleefully gallop out of their alma maters, there’s one or two who get all glassy-eyed with enchantment. Academia has enamored them, and they want nothing more than to scale the stairway to tenured heaven. Their post-doctoral dream is to become professors at the very places that reared their hungry minds.
So let’s not think of our unadopted cats as “super-seniors,” graduation failures or eternal slackers, much less unadoptable. No — the seniors who never see their diplomas are extra-honored around here. We can learn loads from the likes of Dr. Jackie Rosenberg; Maxwell Rosenberg, Ph.D; and Ali Rosenberg, Litt.D., J.D., M.D., Th.D., D.Min. (A lot goes on behind those worried eyes.)
At the same time, let’s not think our professor-types are planted here forever. Academic assignments change; endowed chairs open elsewhere…and long-unadopted cats find their forevers.
Dr. Luna Rosenberg spent many semesters schooling us. I confess I’d come to think she’d stay well into her emerita days. But then, along came a research project too delicious to reject.
We’ll finish this academic excursion with the mother of all term papers, from Luna’s new father:
“Luna is eating, drinking and the plumbing is fine. She is getting more comfortable around the house…She plays with some of her toys and has taken to licking me on the back of my neck and on my face. She reverts to the biting only rarely but is learning that when she does that I take away the hand that pets her. She has even tolerated a brush somewhat. She spends most of the night up on the bed with me and has started to look out of the windows. She turns out to be a love bug.
“She has explored pretty much all of the apartment. She has four or five favorite spots, like the window sills (I screwed 1 x 12 boards to the sills to make them wider), pillowed basket on top of the dresser, my leather easy chair, or just flopped down in the middle of the floor so I need to walk over her. Her secure space was a closet in the bedroom that has a blanket on the floor. I will always leave that open, though I never see her there any longer.
“She was laying on her back yesterday with her legs up in the air. I was tempted to try to pet her belly, but I dont think she would have been OK with that. She communicates with biting. This morning she wanted her wet food, so she started biting my legs. I put my legs back under the blanket, and that was that. She went back to sleep.
“I feed her a watered tablespoon of wet food once a day, and she has dry in a feeder 24/7. When I am sitting in my easy chair watching TV, she likes to jump up on my shoulder and give the back of my neck and my cheek a few licks. She is really quite a loving cat but demands respect. She also likes sleeping when I put a small throw pillow on my lap.
“She will let me brush some of her for a short while, but I need to find a more effective brush. She had a hair ball present for me yesterday.
“We are learning about each other and making accommodations. The biting is usually more of a toothing, saying to stop what I am doing or I will get bitten for real. So, I stop what I am doing and I do not get bitten. She is quietly starting to verbalize. I hope that will eventually replace the toothing as a form of communication….
“We are getting along just fine. She is a marvelously intelligent being.”
Truer words were never spoken. (And we’d say the same about you, LunaPapa.)
Go on to greatness this weekend, grads and goofballs. There’s a path for each of us.