The Cat and the Evil ParakeetWritten by Janette Blackwell
Parakeets were “in” during winter of 1952, and my little brother David had his heart set on one. On December 24, Mamma, Daddy, and I went to a parakeet breeder, paid $7.95, and brought home pretty green bird we had reserved. The parakeet was hidden in back bedroom overnight, but, in early morning dark of Christmas Day, softly glowing bubble lights on our tree revealed birdcage on living room floor among other gifts.
At six that morning, Daddy and Der Doc cat came into house after milking cows. Der Doc always supervised as Daddy and hired man milked. He was rewarded for his efforts with a bowl of fresh milk and a good many compliments from Daddy. Pussycats can tell by your tone of voice that you are complimenting them. They love compliments and believe every one. Therefore, though Der Doc was a rather ugly grey tiger-striped cat, he believed he was good looking. He further believed that he was a superior member of milking team.
The Cat and the Evil MowerWritten by Janette Blackwell
“A coward dies a thousand deaths; a brave man dies but once.” Our cat Der Doc proved that this applies to cats as well.
Caution was watchword in Der Doc’s life. He was a grey cat, striped like a tiger but decidedly without tiger’s courage. Daddy said, “He’s original scaredy-cat.”
Der Doc had run of our farm in Bitterroot Valley of Montana, and farm had multitudes of opportunities for a diligent cat. The chief opportunities lay with barn mice during winter and field mice in summer. Der Doc regularly partook of these opportunities. Cautiously, of course.
How ironic it was that his most searing experience took place when he was cautiously minding his own business. His business being a field mouse in our hayfield, as Daddy drove John Deere tractor into field and began mowing alfalfa.
We children were never allowed in field when Daddy was mowing hay, because sickle on mower extended out eight feet from tractor. You couldn’t see that sickle coming, as uncut alfalfa in front of it hid it. “Cut your little feeties right off, and you’d never know what hit you!” said Daddy. He would have given Der Doc same warning if Der Doc had understood English. For on that sad day uncut alfalfa hid Der Doc as well as sickle.