Editor’s note: As you may have heard, Big Giant Things are afoot at Tabby’s Place this May. More on such Things, Big and Giant, in an upcoming post.
In the meantime, however, one (physically) small (spiritual) giant begs his tale be told. The rumors are true: Lars is still in the land of the living.
You are to be forgiven if you thought you’d read a “Forever Loved” on Lars somewhere along the way. For heaven’s sake, the old cat practically arrived with a pre-purchased funeral plot and custom casket from 1-800-Fixin-To-Die.
Arrived…on June 2, 2016.
When Lars made his arrival, skidding in as the skinniest stray ever scraped up by Animal Control, his expiration date was very clearly stamped upon his forehead. With a chest full of fluid and a body full of cancer, fatal foulness gobbling up every inch of his internal real estate, we knew we were looking our own heartbreak in the gigantic green eyes.
The specialists suggested a month — maybe a couple, if the steroid and palliative chemotherapy reduced some inflammation. But there would be no remission for this weary old codger, no Halloween or Christmas, much less Memorial Day, for a cat we’d only get to love long enough to remember with grief.
It was a point-of-no-return diagnosis.
It was a reasonable prognosis.
It was preparation for one very brief friendship.
And it all would have been accurate, if only Lars were from our planet.
To our great delight, it appears he is decidedly not.
Lars, still riddled with cancer and charging through riddles, is very much alive. These days, despite the dire dealings within his body, our bony boy’s biggest worry is barbering. Lars has taken on the mantle of “dirty old man” with great delight, refusing to groom and acquiring icky “apparel” at every turn. (Congealed wet food? Call it Spring 2017 fashion. Pills that popped out of Lars’ mouth after our staff turned away? Petite plates of armor, stuck deep into his fur.)
We dare not brush or shave Lars’ dreadlock-y pelt, though, because (a) he hates it, and we want him to love every iota of his life, and (b) his shouldn’t-still-be-living skin is so thin we could easily tear it. Which is just dandy as far as Lars is concerned, since it means we won’t try. (You know he had this whole thing planned out precisely.)
So with barbering banned from Planet Lars, there’s more time for the tasks at hand: loving. Eating. Laying about for long hours. Beseeching bringers of baby food.
Doing it all again and again and again…day after miraculous, unforeseen day.
We know Lars won’t live forever. But we’re learning that great good gifts can come unbidden, barreling our way by the months and years.
And we’re making sure every day is a festival day on Planet Lars.