February 17th, 2016

humped zebra

There's a new name not written down, oh glory

I stopped at a fast food restaurant on my way to the hospital to make a call today. As I waited in line, I could hear the cashier ask each person, "Can I have a name for your order?"

Now, as you probably know, I just hate being asked for my name in a restaurant. It feels fake and manipulative to me. Besides, a lot of people can't make out "Art" when you say it; it sounds like Mark, Bart, etc. And if you say, "Arthur," then they can't spell it. Over the years, I've had my name spelled with all kinds of extra letters -- Aurthor, Arther, Arruther, and so on. So when it came my turn, the lady took my order and then asked, "Can I have a name for your order?"

"Aloysius," I replied. When she looked startled, I spelled it for her. "A-l-o-y-s-i-u-s."

She gamely started to right it down on the receipt, repeating it aloud. "L, O . . ."

I interrupted. "A. L. O. Y. S. I. U. S. Just like it sounds."

She dropped her pen. "I'll know who you are," she said. And I got my order without further ado. No one tried to call out my name, they just handed me the sack.

I drove off filled with the wonderful, sweet experience of victory.
by himself

Sad news

Anna and Brian's cat, Mordred, has died. He was just turned 14 years old, a big, beautiful, black beast. This last week, he was off his feed and spending time semi-hidden. Anna took him to the vet, who said his heart was thickening. They did a lot of expensive tests and prescribed some serious medicine, but told Anna he might live three or four years -- or he might day the next day. She undertook to feed him wet food by hand to build up his strength. Tonight, she found him in the litter box, dead of apparent heart failure.

We put him in a pillow case and I took him out to my truck to await the morning. It falls to me to take him out to Wilderstead and bury him next to Fuji and Cuthbert and Sassafras, since they haven't closed on the house they've made an offer on. Anna would go, but that means James would have to go, and he wouldn't take such a trip well. If Daniel is up and wants to go, I'll take him along, but I've got to get a move on in the morning. I'll lay him in the earth and build a cairn over him. Brian is coming down this weekend, and they may all want to go out to Wilderstead and say good-bye. We'll see.

I wish we could organize this all better, since this will be the boys' first grief, and that's a big deal. But you can't just hold the body, it won't keep. Anyway, thanks to God for the gift of Mordred, and prayers for Anna, Brian, Daniel, and James, who will all miss him very much -- not to mention prayers for his fellow, Percivale (now 16 and still going strong). We've had both cats since they moved back to Indiana from Kansas City two years ago. Once they get established in their new home this spring (God speed the work!), Percivale will be installed in his new home. It's a shame Mordred won't be able to share in that.