Political pundit Stumpy Wagers measured out a small glass of wine and looked at his cat, Lucky, who was laying on the wooden chair and watching him edit a story at the kitchen table.
“Looks like it’s gonna be just you and me for awhile, Lucky,” he said.
Lucky’s ears twitched, the brown slits of his yellow eyes, staring back at him. “Hope you have enough food for the both of us,” he replied, “because if you catch the coronavirus and die here, you’re gonna be my meal of last resort.”
“Hmmh, some cat you are,” Wagers shot back. “You’re nothing like my last cat, Mouser. Now that was a real cat. Got him from the bodega down the street when I first moved into this basement apartment. Had mice back then. Mouser patrolled this place for 16 years – from every nook in the boiler room to the crawl space between my drop ceiling and the first-floor. Now that was a cat.”
Lucky whipped his tail back and forth. “What do you expect me to do? You don’t have any more mice.”
“I don’t know. Act like a cat or something. Shit, you can’t even jump onto the street level windowsills and look outside. Every cat does that. The most you do is get on my bed or this kitchen table and stretch on your hind legs reaching with your front paws on the walls towards the sill.”
“You can’t take the hint. When I stretch like that you’re supposed to pick me up and put me on the windowsill like when I was a kitten.”
“I’m not picking a grown-ass cat up and putting him on the window sill. I never had to pick up Mouser and put him on the window sill. You know why? Cause he just did it. That’s what cats do. They jump on windowsills and stare out at the street!”
Lucky shut his eyes, opened them again, jumped down to the floor, laid down and stretched his fatty body out. “When’s dinner? I’m getting hungry.”
“Meal of last resort, huh? You’re looking pretty plump and juicy yourself these days.”
“That’s not even funny,” said Lucky.
“Do I look like I’m laughing to you,” Stumpy replied. “If we get stranded here longer than anyone expects because of this coronavirus and it comes down to eating my shoe leather or you, which one you think I would salt up first?”
“Wouldn’t I? You sleep much sounder than me. One slice with the sharp kitchen knife across the neck and it will be roast cat for a week. And you know what?
“I bet you’d taste just like chicken.”
Lucky got up, hoisting his tail straight up in the air. “Don’t you have a story to edit or something,” he said, walking towards the couch. “I’m taking a little nap. Call me when it’s dinner time.”
“Sure thing, Lucky. Sleep tight!”