The Journey

Return to the Village of the Damned: The Flip-Flop of the Felines

Cleo the Cat: “Who the hell is Elvis?”

Scotch the Cat: “I don’t know. Wait, maybe I do. He’s the one who sings about a Boo Boo Christmas. I always have a boo boo Christmas. I make boo boos every day and then wait for the Magic Scoop to hide my badness.”

Cleo: “Stop making this all about you. There’s only room for one Diva Kitty here at Bonnywood, and I’m not going down without a fight.”

Scotch: “Oh, okay. I didn’t know we were fighting. Maybe you could say ‘we are fighting now’ and I would know better. And maybe if your ass wasn’t so big we would have more room for divas.”

Cleo: “Hold up. What’s going on here, with you coming up with semi-admirable rebuttals to my previously-unchallenged proclamations? I’m supposed to be the smart kitty and you’re the short-circuit kitty with focus problems and unregulated cluelessness.”

Scotch: “Um, well, maybe it’s my new kibble. The Daddies talked to the vegetarian about my anger issues and they got a piece of paper with scribbles on it and now my kibble looks and smells different on certain days. Just like you used to do before they ripped out your plumbing.”

Cleo: “Hmm. They didn’t run this new food regimen past me, so of course I’ll have to discuss it with my attorneys. Until then, just how smart did you get? And where can I find an antidote?”

Scotch: “I’ve never been smart before, so I don’t really have a reference point. Maybe you can test my IQ?”

Cleo: “The mere fact that you can even ask that question scares the hell out of me. But you’re right, let’s test this. Study this insipid photo that Daddy One took, thinking it said “artistic and moody” but what it really says is “taken with his smartphone because he’s too cheap to buy an actual camera that could compensate for the low-light aura”. Ready? Go!”

Scotch: “Okay, well, Elvis and his Boo Boo are lost in shadow, much like Daddy’s inability to make anything out of his writing efforts.”

Cleo: “Oh, that’s good. Keep going.”

Scotch: “Then we have the crooked bush on the corner of the building on the left. It’s possible that Daddy was trying to make a political statement about a former president, but I think it speaks more to Daddy not hiring the right set decorators.”

Cleo: “Excellent. Continue.”

Scotch: “Then we have the stupid, out-of-focus flamingos that are blindly marching toward the concert venue where they can listen to dead people sing songs that no longer matter. These would be the lemmings who voted for Trump.”

Cleo: “Kudos. And the most important bit of all?

Scotch: “That would be Trump himself, on the far right, staring into the House of Respectability where he will never gain entrance. At the end of the day, despite the madness and the lemmings and the blatant disregard for any degree of decency or legality, he will go down in history as a complete and total asshole.”

Cleo: “Wow. I am SO impressed with you right now. You are truly embracing the spirit of Bonnywood. Daddy is going to be so proud of you.”

Scotch: “Oh, he’s already proud of me. And I know he loves me. After all, he lets me make bread on his belly while he’s lying on the couch, even though my claws are ripping him to shreds. That’s love. And all those times when I go to the dark side and scream like a howler monkey because of my inner demons? Five minutes later, when I’ve completely forgotten about my freak-out, he lets me hop on his lap while he’s sitting at his desk, working on his blog and petting me and reading parts of his stories out loud to make sure they sound right. That’s more love.”

Cleo: “I guess our daddies do love us a lot, even though they don’t follow my directives most of the time.”

Scotch: “They don’t follow them because you’re a drama queen up against two other drama queens. You’re not always going to win. But you should show more love whenever you can. It took me a while to figure that out.”

Suddenly, Daddy One walks into the room. “What are you kids doing in here?”

Cleo: “Nothing.”

Scotch: “She made me do it.”

Daddy One: “Uh huh. Do either of you want to confess now or do you just want me to find the evidence later?”

Cleo: “There’s nothing to find. We were just talking about… stuff.”

Scotch: “I think we were actually bonding. And trust me, I’m just as surprised as you are.”

Daddy One: “Well, it’s nice to see you both getting along for a change. Life is so much easier when the two of you can be in the same room without something getting broken.”

Daddy Two walks into the room. “I just got home. Who broke what?”

Cleo: “Nothing’s broken. In fact, I think we just fixed something. My brother is turning out to be a decent guy after all.”

Scotch: “Aww. That’s so sweet of you.”

Cleo: “But I still don’t appreciate you sniffing my butt every time I walk into a room. It’s the same butt, every day.”

Scotch: “I’ll try to work on that, but every day is a new day for me.”

Cleo: “I’d say every minute is a new minute for you. Well, the old me would say that. The new me is trying to be better at forgiveness.”

Daddy Two to Daddy One: “Do you have any idea what’s going on here?”

Daddy One to Daddy Two: “No idea. But you capture the light when you can and you hold it tight.”

The four members of the Bonnywood Family smile at each other while the lights blink in the Christmas Village, then they head down to the Palm Lounge to hear Elvis sing about his boo boo.


Please do not read past this point if you are not prepared for some unhappy news from Bonnywood. This is not a humorous twist or a teaser to keep you reading. If you would rather walk away from this story in a light-hearted mood, please click off the page now.

Scotch the Cat is no longer with us. We had to let go of him Friday night.

Perhaps I will share the full details in a later post, but I really don’t know at this point if I can or should. Suffice it, for now, to say that Scotch had a moderately-troubling medical issue for the past year. But suddenly and unexpectedly, in the span of 36 hours, that issue went from concern to shock to making a decision about quality of life.

Daddy One and Daddy Two chose quality, and we were both with Scotch during the transition, in a private room at an emergency clinic in Mansfield, Texas, a facility staffed by folks who were gracious and kind, even though they must see this every day. I don’t know how they do it.

In yet another example of the twistiness of life, I had started this particular story before I knew anything was seriously wrong with Scotch. I am finishing it now after realizing just how serious it was. And even though I yearned to make the story a tribute, I forced myself to stay with my original vision of the story, just sprinkling it with a bit more love than I usually do, even though love, at least in my mind, is always present at Bonnywood.

Please understand if it takes me some time to respond to your comments that I know are coming. It’s all very raw and unreal right now, but I will get to the comments eventually. Every minute is a new minute.

Cheers. To Scotch.


23 replies »

  1. Cheers Scotch! May you find dangling bits in heaven to jump at, mousy bits to chase and a warm spot to lay your head. My tears honour you. With deepest sympathies Daddies.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Scotch, you may not have been the brightest bulb in the feline world but intelligence doesn’t equal how much someone is loved. And you were dearly, dearly loved, even by people who never met you. I wish you lots of mousies and warm sunny rays for napping. 🐀

    Dear daddies, my most sincere condolences. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  3. So sad to hear the news of Scotch’s passing over the Rainbow Bridge. He had many years of love with you, and has left his paw prints on your heart. It’s hard to say good-bye to our fur family, and I’ve always told them I’ll see you later. ❤ ❤

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Sad to read that Scotch has passed at the end there Brian…
    Bloody pets, coming in and stealing all the feels for their shorter-than-ours lifespans, guaranteeing us animal lovers many heart-wrenching sad times during our lifetimes.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Oh Scotch! Oh Daddies. I’m so sorry to read this. I’d not long since declared how much ‘I bloody love Scotch’, and I’m crying real tears. What a perfect puddy-cat muse he was, forever with you in your stories. I think it’s a privilege to be able to take away our pet’s pain, but they do leave a big hole behind. Hope you both find comfort in memories of Scotch to help ease the pain.

    Liked by 1 person

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