We always had cats when I was a kid. I had a whole line of Tigger–Tiggy Two–and Miss Tiger. The glory days.
But there was this one cat that will go down in history as one of the meanest, most persnickety, and crustiest creatures alive.
Uncle Mark named her. I still don’t know why he chose Beenkus, but it had something to do with his particular sense of humor. If you heard Uncle Mark say “Beenkus” you’d die laughing.
Anyways, she was a stinker. Beenkus Stinkus. She remembered people and things and had a way of letting you know.
The incident that is in my mind today is when my family left for a weekend trip. We were only gone like two days, and Mom left the litter box and some bowls of food and water for her. Plus I think there was another cat around at the time–so she was fine.
It wasn’t like she was some social butterfly that needed anybody any way. She was prickly with everyone but my brother Nate, so maybe that was her peeve with us that weekend.
We came in from the beach or wherever we had gone and Beenkus sauntered in with her smug little walk.
Yes, we see you. Thank you for filling the litter box and hacking your hairballs in the entry way. Also your white cat hair all over the place is greatly appreciated.
She waited until we were all settled in and back to the old routine. Mom was getting dinner ready or cleaning the kitchen–I can’t remember. I’m sure Beenkus would.
She chose that moment to hop on top of the counter, climb into the sink, and poop–right in front of my Mom.
Mom shrieked, grabbed her fatty neck and promptly tossed her outside.
We were all so confused. This was pre-dementia Beenkus. Whatever her reasons, they were calculated and organized.
Mom was convinced she was mad at us for leaving her. “Cats do weird things when you leave them. They take it personally.” She said.
I’ll never forget that moment with Beenkus. It was simultaneously fascinating and horrifying. What a crazy creature she was! How bold and defiant!
After leaving my kids for a few days I understand Beenkus’s rebellion a little better.
They haven’t exactly pooped in the sink, but lets just say my kids have made our first day back to routine a nightmare. It took me a while to make the connection–at first I thought that maybe my absence had illuminated their waywardness a little more clearly. But once I remembered Beenkus, it all made sense.
We are cleaning the litter box–scraping the hairballs off the floor–and trying not to toss them out by the neck. Ok, that sounds really bad. I was trying to run with that metaphor and all of a sudden it sounds really abusive. Whoops.
It’s a strange thing to still miss your kids but also be fed up with them at the same time. Maybe that’s how Beenkus felt with us. Maybe she, like my kids, needed to express her feeling of abandonment in the most emphatic way she could.
Welcome home. Have some poop with your clean dishes.