A long time ago, in a land far far away (Virginia), I considered myself a writer. I wrote short stories and poetry mostly. For more about why I no longer write, you can read my home page… The daily prompt bids us to write a post entirely in the present tense, and when I was a writer, that, dear reader, was an interesting, intellectual exercise… And one that I did a couple of times, because it’s not easy. Let me rephrase that. It’s not easy to do well. Tons of people do it all of the time, but they don’t do it well. It’s quite popular (or it used to be) with erotica — badly written erotica — IMHO. And I could totally write a blog for you in present tense if I wanted to sound odd and strange because that’s an exercise for people writing fiction, not people writing personal blogs. I mean, how weird would it be if I wrote my blog for today in present tense? If I were to try and talk normally to y’all but take all of the past tense stuff and write it in present tense… No. Weird is something I am, not something I try to be. 😛 This blog basically talks about things I recall, stories of my life then and now and things I believe in and think about. Even though I don’t live in the past, my memories are a part of me and they do come up now and again. Say I wanted to talk about my ghost cat — because I told someone I’d tell them about the ghost cat.
The only way to tell y’all about the ghost cat is to take you back to Virginia when my daughter and I lived together there. Now, I could spin a fictionalized story about the ghost cat and put it all in present tense, but honestly it’s not that exciting, and this isn’t a fictional blog. It’s just a place for me to blabber about things in an effort to amuse and connect. Things like the ghost cat — whom I do still blame for things that go missing in my house though he was localized to that last apartment in Virginia my daughter and I lived in for just over a year.
By the way, I’m totally serious about us having a ghost cat… We had no pets at all in that apartment because we couldn’t afford the pet fee. There was only one way in and out of that apartment. The whole place was less than 800 sf and we were poor as dirt so we didn’t have much in the way of furniture. But we, our friends and family, and casual visitors kept seeing over the course of the year or so we lived there, a long haired grey cat. Sitting there one minute, gone the next. Believe me, the first few times we saw the cat, we looked high and low for places he could be hiding and we found… nothing. I’d closed that place up tight due to it being Virginia and me being overly paranoid about flying roaches coming inside (they liked to come in on the sewer lines, I had caulking and tape over any little hole I could find). So anyway, that place was buttoned up tight. The only way in or out was the front door, and the only time it was unlocked was when we were home, and after the second drunk mistakenly walked into our place, we started locking it then too. And after the door popped open even with the handle lock on, we started locking the deadbolt while we where at home too. BTW, that had a perfectly plausible explanation, we lived in apartments with breezeways, which are common in The South and create all kinds of nice drafts. Of course, every house has things that go missing, and things that go wrong. After a few months, whenever things happened, we blamed the ghost cat.
So, we chalked our wayward visitor up to maybe being ghostly, welcomed the ghost cat into our “normal” and went on with our lives. Whenever friends, family, or a casual visitor asked us if we had a cat we’d shrug and say, “Nope, that’s the ghost cat.” as if it were the most natural thing in the world to have a ghost cat. If we set scissors down and they wandered away (as scissors are wont to do) we blamed the ghost cat. If somehow or another the remote control for the television ended up in the freezer (as remote controls sometimes do), well then, the ghost cat must have done it. I mean, we wouldn’t have done something so silly, right? As I tell my husband all of the time, “It’s gotta be someone’s fault, and it can’t be mine.” ^_^ I dunno if the ghost cat took umbrage at our blaming it for everything. If so, it never let on. I think that the ghost cat pretty much just ignored us and went about its daily business… whatever that was.
The ghost cat didn’t follow either my daughter nor I to our next destinations so I’m guessing that if it was actually a ghost, it was what they call a “local” disturbance. Attached to the time and place that it was haunting. Since it didn’t appear to be hurting anything and we were just joking about it taking things, we pretty much left it alone. I like to remember it fondly though, because for most of my adult life I couldn’t have pets — pet fees in apartments are way too high, and it was nice to think that I had one for a little while, even if it was a ghost — maybe.