Don't you just hate spoilers? I do, too. That's why I always try to include warnings. However, I sometimes ramble a bit too much here or there and maybe a few (or many) key plot points slip without me giving proper notice. So I'd like to include a blanket spoiler warning for the weary internet travelers of the world: Here There Be Spoilers. You've been warned.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Good Thing There Isn't a Real Pet Sematary...

On the first day of this month I discovered that Edgar Allan Poe had been killed by a car. My beautiful black cat with piercing yellow eyes that I had had since late 2008 was dead. My father had sent me a text at 6:30 in the morning telling me that he thought he had seen Poe's body right outside of the neighborhood in the middle of the street while he was on his way to work. 

Poe had a rather striking tail. It was the kind of tail that immediately draws attention because of its fluffiness. The rest of his fur was that way, too. It was hell when he was shedding because he would build this thick coat for winter and then start to lose it and anything he laid down on would become black from it.

I walked to the entrance of the neighborhood that morning. I didn't even really think about driving because I really didn't want it to be him and I could walk the distance anyway. I was in my pajamas and a white t-shirt. It was starting to rain and I didn't have an umbrella. 

I knew it was him as soon as I saw his tail. He was in the middle of the road with his tail facing my neighborhood. His head was facing the woods. 

The road was a two-lane, but it was always busy thanks to school and people going to work. I stood by the stop sign for about ten minutes before I could chance going into the middle of the road. I picked him up and he was stiff as an ironing board. 

I was fucking pissed. Actually, I was pissed as soon as I saw him lying there. I was kicking the curb and yelling the word "fuck" a lot. But I grew more pissed when I held him and picked him up. Somebody ran over my cat. Somebody killed my goddamn fucking cat. Yeah, my cat was black and it could have been pitch black at night, but still... I was cursing all of humanity at that moment. What the fuck else was I going to do? I was powerless. This was my pet. I had cats before and my last one had been killed by a car too, but I had managed to say goodbye to that one. That had sucked so much, but I realize it is worse when you can't say goodbye. 

It is worse when you can't mentally prepare yourself for the vet to have to put your animal down. It's worse when one day you picture yourself moving into an apartment someday and thinking about what it would be like to adjust your cat to the new environment only to discover that the very next day after these deep ruminations that your little buddy is dead. 

It's worse, I tell you. 

I set him in the grass in someone's yard. I was sure they wouldn't mind for the moment. I walked back to my house and grabbed a towel and the only box I could find and tossed them in my car. It was raining harder. I beat the steering wheel in frustration. I really didn't want to be doing this. 

My cat was awesome. Of all the shitty cats in my neighborhood why the hell did it have to be mine? He'd been a kitten when I first got him. He was my buddy through my schooless and jobless years. He loved to sit in my bed and sleep while I watched anime. He almost always came to me when I said "kitty" and patted the floor. He was loyal in a way I thought a cat couldn't be. 

This was crushing. 

Burying him wasn't the emotionally draining part. It was exhausting because we have a lot of red clay and digging through it is a sonofabitch, but I welcomed the exhaustion. I was still pissed. I dug a deep hole. A really deep hole. It was wide, too. I could have jumped in it and the ground would have gone up to my waist. I didn't want anything digging him up. 

The worst part wasn't even when I accidentally turned him a bit to see the side of his face while I was carrying him across the street. I managed to see what remained of that side of his face and I quickly turned him away. I couldn't look at his underside at all for fear of seeing something worse. I kept my eyes to his back. 

The worst part was the box. It had been a chainsaw box so there was a slight vertical gap on one side. Since my cat was stiff as an ironing board I had to manually curl him into a ball so he would fit. He finished defecating himself as I did so and that was really nice. I tried real hard to keep the towel wrapped around him as I handled him. 

I closed the top of the box as quickly as I could and placed him in my car. I forgot about the gap until I looked over to the passenger seat and saw the tip of his little paw sticking out. 

That's when I broke. 

After I buried him I sat down in my room in the dark and cried like a little bitch for about an hour. I could have gone on all day. I probably should have. It would have been more therapeutic. 

But I didn't. I wiped my tears away and watched anime in a state of numbness for the rest of the day. 

A couple of days ago my uncle came across a little kitten, a calico. The calico was in the wild and who the hell knows what would have happened to it. My uncle asked me if I wanted it. A hole in my heart had been torn open days ago, but I couldn't stand the idea of some animal losing its life because I was being sad and sorry. 

I've been playing with this calico a lot. She's really sweet. But I look at the spot on my bed where Poe would lay and realize that I still miss my cat Edgar Allan Poe terribly. I love having a new kitten and she is cute as a button. I'm going to spoil her and get her fixed and do everything I never did for Edgar Allan Poe, but my one "soul pet" (if that isn't a term then it should be) is no longer with me and I regret deeply and truly that I never got him fixed so he wouldn't wander around. He might have still been killed by a car because of the way my luck often runs with cats, but now I'm left wondering "what if." 

But by God, I'm not going to let this one suffer the same fate. I can't bury another animal like that again. This one is staying indoors. 

2008-2015 was a helluva run with Edgar Allan Poe, but I wish he would have seen old age. He was fucking awesome. He deserved old age and not some surprise Game of Thrones-ending. 

He loved boxes and sleeping. There's some irony here. 

It really does suck that my cat is dead. Good thing I don't know of any micmac burial grounds nearby. 

So what's the moral of this story? Get your animals fixed and keep them inside. 


  1. I'm sorry to hear about Edgar. That's a tough thing to have to do. I'm getting into "dreading the inevitable" territory with Ozzy. He is a 13 1/2 year old Labrador and he's getting feeble. He's well past the average life expectancy for that type of dog. The past year or so, I've been giving him pain meds and anti inflammatory med for an arthritis condition in his back legs. That has worked well but lately I've noticed the pain is coming back despite the meds. I talked to the vet and he said I can up the pain meds some but that this adjustment is the last upward adjustment we can make with the pills. After that, he has some kind of injection treatment that might work for a while. For now, he's ok, but I know the end is in sight and it's difficult to even think about.