11 June 2012


We had some kitten drama this past week. Took Morty to the vet for his SPCA-mandated checkup, and the vet diagnosed a fever. Did you know cats have higher body temperatures than humans? I didn't. Their normal temp is about 38.5; but Morty was at 40.0. None of us could figure out why, as he wasn't showing any symptoms of standard cat illnesses. He still seemed fine that day, just a bit lethargic. Over the next day-and-a-half, he got a lot lethargic - all he wanted to do was sleep. And this is a kitten we're talking about, he's supposed to bounce off the walls and make a right pest of himself! So we were concerned, but still thinking he'd get over it - until Thursday afternoon, when he barfed up all his food, and looked like he had trouble going poo. So back to the vet we went in a hurry! A sizable vet bill later, Morty had some fluids injected into him, and we had a bottle of chalky-white antibiotic stuff to squirt into his mouth every twelve hours. All this fuss over a little less than two pounds of fur and big round eyes...

And it only took a day for him to get back to proper kittenhood. Boing, boing, boing... He's a proper nuisance again, and we're so glad for it. Incidentally, I found out just how hard kittens can clamp their little jaws shut when they don't want to take their medicine. But I'm quite merciless; he gets wrestled to the ground (well, to my lap, anyway), have his teeth prised apart, and the drugs squirted right into the back of his mouth. Blch, yuck, pfui! You can just see it in the expression on his little face, he's NOT impressed. Too-bad-so-sad, little guy; medicine has to be taken. So he shakes his head, and makes a beeline for his food dish to get the nasty taste out of his mouth. And I laugh at him for it, cruel person that I am.

Speaking of drama, and of weather, I've been noticing (once again) how movie dramas tend to use weather almost like background music. Main character is happy: all is sunshine and roses; MC is sad: cue rain. I wouldn't mind seeing a movie which either completely ignores weather, or reverses it, so that the sun shines brilliantly for the funeral and the wedding takes place in a rain storm.

There is, of course, another option, one that Jane Austen utilizes brilliantly in her writing, and that is to make the weather a character in its own right. Or perhaps not a character, but a very important plot point. If it wasn't raining the day that Jane sets out for her visit to Netherfield, Mrs Bennet wouldn't make her go on horseback on purpose to get wet, and Jane wouldn't catch a horrible cold and have to be visited by her sister, thereby precipitating (get it? Precipitating. Hah, I'm so witty.) precipitating the furtherance of Elizabeth's acquaintance with Mr Darcy. And without the summer heat on the day of the strawberry-picking excursion to Donwell Abbey, and the even worse heat on the day of the Box Hill Picnic, Frank Churchill wouldn't have an argument with Jane Fairfax, wouldn't behave like a jerk and inspire Emma to do the same, and Mr Knightley would have no reason to tell off Emma so severely it makes her cry (and finally see the light). And so on and so forth. But I don't think you ever find out in the books just what the weather is like during any of the weddings - because Austen knew full well that it really doesn't matter if the sun shines when you say "I do", as long as you mean the "for better or for worse" bit. And I suppose that includes better or worse weather, as well.

Incidentally, it was pouring rain the day kitty made his recovery. Which just goes to show, I'm sure.

Life, the Universe, Drama and Weather. Today it's sunny, and there's no deep meaning to that at all.

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