09 May 2009

Politics and poker

Milton and Max
April 2009

Max is Neighbor B's cat. He is my funny little buddy, and he comes over to visit when I'm out gardening. I will occasionally feed him some small treat--a bit of trout left over from dinner (don't worry: Milton gets his share)--but if nothing is forthcoming, he will happily nibble at the grass on the lawn.

Milton is highly territorial, and even though Max arrives making small, peaceful noises, Milton will often club him on the head, just to remind Max who is in charge. However, Milton gets very protective of Max if the other male cat in the neighborhood, Olivier, starts attacking him, and Milton has sent Olivier fleeing for his life on more than one occasion.

Not bad for a terrified little stray who is afraid of birds.

The funniest thing, though, is that Max feels very much at home just walking into my house when I'm not looking and Milton allows this. He did keep Max cornered under my bed for an entire afternoon, unbeknownst to me, but more often, Max just wanders in and lies down on the dining room rug for a nice little rest. And right around the time I've finished deadheading flowers, he'll wander back out, with Milton trailing behind.

I swear the two of them look for all the world as if they've just shared a beer over a nice game of cards.

Go listen to some music: "Politics and Poker" from the musical Fiorello!, book by Jerome Weidman and George Abbot, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, music by Jerry Bock.

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