Shasha the cat

I need to sit down and write my political science paper, but my head’s fuzzy and I can’t think to write. Tonight I think I’ll just gather facts and outline, maybe.

I went for a walk in the cold air of early evening to clear my head. Remember my choral concert with record-breaking heat, 80 degrees in March? (In my part of the world, March means the first warm spring winds of the year, not baking heat.) This week we’ve gone to the other extreme and had a wicked cold snap. It was below freezing last night and will be for the next few nights. Local fruit and berry growers may lose their crops, and we gardeners fear the cold will burn the tender leaves and flowers the weeks of warm weather coaxed out of our landscaping.

During my brain-clearing walk I saw the first lilacs of the year in my back yard, and was sad to cut them, still in hard purple buds and not yet blooming, and bring them in out of the danger of frost. I put them in a beautiful ceramic teapot that I usually use for flowers, not tea. (I have a sturdier and more pedestrian teapot for tea.)

Has my writing been less interesting lately? I fear it has. Just as all happy families are alike, all happy bloggers have fewer interesting things to say. I certainly was more interesting when math was kicking my ass. Now I am having the pleasantest semester of my life. Truly. My teachers are delightful, my classwork fascinating, my schedule manageable. No more long grueling hours in the math lab, looking out the window and feeling my dreams wear away under the constant assault of failure and fear. I think my worst grade so far this semester (other than that 19 on a physics test in a class I dropped) is an 88 for a lightweight poli sci paper that I knew was naive and poorly researched, but my physics studies had eaten up all my time and I had neglected my poli sci readings to do my science homework.

No more. I’ve dropped all my science classes and emerged from my science chrysalis a fully-formed Mass Communication major. With this paper I’m writing tonight, I’ve done all my reading. Kudos to the entertaining Dr. Subramaniam for a political science class that compared to what I am used to is like a long, warm walk in a summer garden, relaxing and invigorating. I mean, the class mostly consists of watching videos and reading articles that have been carefully selected for you by a very smart man with a Ph.D. who tries with all his expertise to find information on world politics that is compelling and relevant to the class topic of globalization. I’m an information junkie and Subramaniam is a news junkie — so the whole arrangement is like having a personal chef cooking up delicious treats for my mind. Subramaniam calls our readings “mind candy.” Indeed.

I’ve got a new foster cat. A few nights ago a shy black and white cat, small but stout, began hanging around my front porch. I swiftly befriended him, as he is the friendliest and least aggressive cat I have ever known. He rubs against my cats like he has known them all his life and he knows neither fear nor jealousy. He has spent the last two nights inside my house, last night snuggled into the curve of my left hip as if he had lived here for two lifetimes instead of two nights. He spent most of today curled up on my pillow. He seems to be a purebred manx cat, with a funny little bony stub of a tail that looks like a rabbit’s tail and long hind legs. And as he is colored much like a Dutch rabbit and is a rabbity little cat, I have named him Shasha, Sanskrit for rabbit.

After I’m done with my paper, I’ll start seeing if anyone is advertising for a lost manx in my neighborhood. Shasha is neutered, healthy, and a supremely loving and friendly little animal, so surely someone is looking for him. I am sad to think that someone thinks he is shivering in the cold, when in fact he is napping on an electric blanket and pestering me at my desk for petting and love.

OK, my head is feeling clearer now. Back to my paper. Thank you for listening.

3 responses to “Shasha the cat

  1. Has your writing been less interesting? No. But harder to respond to. If someone is going through a tough time and blogs about it there is an impulse to send a hug via the electropixies :-), something short and swift to reassure that yes, we all go through the hard times, that they do pass and that somewhere there is a glimmer of light.

    Much harder to do that in response to contentment. For one thing, what you write about is more thought-provoking. ‘The Power of Positive Thinking’ left me mulling over ideas for days – but nothing that could be put in a comment – too vague, too nebulous and possibly FAR too much information! I could have written you an essay on the biological and evolutionary basis for it, I could have wandered off into semi-spiritual and psychological reasonings or perhaps I just retreated into my shell for fear of being trite!

    No – most certainly not “less interesting”!

  2. Well, I’ve always said that art and profundity grow in sunlight as well as shade — thank you for reminding me of my own stance.

  3. I have to agree … I did a lot of thinking about “The Power of Positive Thinking”, but not that you’d ever have known it! I came back and read it several times, trying to crystallize what it was making me think into a comment, but so far, it isn’t crystallizing. I don’t think that’s a fault of your writing, just the way writing is sometimes: the response it requires/demands/provokes isn’t always immediate. I still enjoy reading here!

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