Wesley the The Extraordinaire Houdini of Magical Cats

Dedicated to Alicia

At first glance a regular person would not notice Wesley’s magical powers – he appears to be a common house cat living a very common house cat life.

Wesley, a 3 month old bright-eyed kitten, was adopted by two college students that went to the local Animal Rescue League in October in search of  the perfect cat. Wesley had his shots and was neutered, he was examined by the veterinarian and pronounced healthy and ready for adventure. Wesley actually picked his people (not the other way around – people are so full of themselves) by calling to the girl in his most prettiest voice, “Mello,” which happened to be her name! To the boy he tried “Moulin” which is as close as he could get in Cat language and it caught the boy’s attention. Wesley was just the right kitten for them, he had just the right coloring (gray and white short hair) with just the right tail length and a happy disposition. He was charming and had a loud rumbling purr that turned his people’s heart to mush; in short he won them over in a heartbeat. The veterinarian had just two cautions: Wesley had a balance disability, he wouldn’t be able to jump up on to couches and cabinets, window sills and beds would be off-limits. And even though he had all of his shots his mother cat had feline herpes virus and Wesley also carried the virus but wouldn’t necessarily come down with the disease himself. The vet was sure that Wesley’s brain could compensate for his balance disorder and that in a years time he wouldn’t have any mobility problems – he would be a purrfect cat.

Wesley went home in his brand new sherpa-lined cat carrier, he rode the subway like any other frightened kitten, yowling “Too much noise, too many smells and people!” Once home, his Home, Wesley explored every smell in every room of his tiny apartment: the living room, the bathroom, the bedroom, the kitchen. He learned about the people before his own people who lived in his apartment. Mello placed his carrier in the bedroom just where he had wanted it to be put, she adjusted his padding, opening the door so that it wouldn’t close on an unsuspecting kitten. Wesley’s carrier, his Bed, faced Mello’s bed, he would be her watch cat and protector, for even though he was a kitten he had magical powers that his people were totally unaware he possessed.

It was Moulin’s job to tidy up Wesley’s litter box and it was Wesley’s job to let Moulin know when there was too little litter or too much in his box. If there was too much then it became a sandy beach complete with volleyball court, too little litter brought ‘accidents’ outside of the box. Wesley’s food and water station was conveniently situated next to his people’s dining area table and since Wesley by nature wasn’t a beggar, he spent dinner time curled up at their feet. He enjoyed watching Moulin cook and would try to give him suggestions but since Cat/English challenged their communication skills, and kittens weren’t allowed on the counter tops, even if they could somehow appear there, Wesley opted to send his thoughts telepathically and Moulin would add more paprika.

Here are some of Wesley’s magical feats: he can appear to have absolutely no bones – none at all! This can be observed when Wesley drapes himself over the edge of his favorite willow chair, the one with doggy smells from a far away place, Wesley oozes and puddles over the seat cushion, unnatural for a cat. He also can appear out of nowhere when the can opener is ever so lightly taken from the utensil drawer and attached to a can of cat food. At the same time, he can disappear right in front of Moulin without so much of a hair left behind. “Where is Wesley, has anyone seen Wesley?” This is one of his most favorite games. He usually can be found in his bed, little head resting on his right paw, sleeping soundly when just moments before he was sitting on Moulin’s law books obstructing justice. Or suddenly appear behind Mello’s head licking some of her hair – how he got up on the couch is a mystery! If Wesley tilts his head too far back as he does to calculate the correct landing on the sofa table, he will flip backwards and bump his head. This causes great concern and tender moments of affection and sweet scolding – which for Wesley is the ultimate signs of love a kitten could receive.

One of Wesley’s best (and as of yet undetected by his people) magical accomplishments is his power to make his people appear and disappear! He can think of Mello and she will appear and feed him, he can think that he’d like to stretch out on the couch and Moulin will disappear complete with his law books and coffee mug. Sometimes Wesley, for wont of privacy and some lengthy nap time, can imagine his people out-of-sight for hours and blink them back all cuddly, kissy and warm. Cat time is not eastern-standard time, people time is usually dominated by meal and bedtime. Wesley plays in the between time appearing and disappearing at will, he has even learned how to take objects with him and has quite a cache tucked out of harms way. “Where did your fuzzy ball go,” Mello asks, chucking Wesley under his chin. “It was here just a minute ago …”

Wesley is a Jewish kitten since Mello is Jewish and by Jewish law he is also. He has learned about Friday night Shabbat prayers at sundown where both he and Moulin don their yarmulkes at the table. His favorite smell is roasted kosher chicken with gravy – if his prayers are answered some will be scraped into his bowl. Wesley celebrates both Hanukkah and Christmas holidays with his people, tinsel and candles – he has to be careful because presents make his tiny apartment even smaller and harder to navigate. Dinner guests bring a variety of voices, laughs and smells – doggish and cattish, hard pats and soft, into Wesley’s life. Is it no wonder that Wesley disappears from underfoot and reappears for good-byes, like a good kitten should?

Moulin loves to watch hockey and basketball on his TV, his energy level recharges Wesley’s batteries which often means kitten games of tags and surprise! throughout the night. Mello hums, knead and massages Wesley to sleep; Mello and Moulin are Wesley’s yin and yang, his reason for being, his awesome people to keep safe. For Wesley has one more magical ability, which with a balance disorder of his magnitude is rare indeed: he can surround his people in a netting of safety, woven from kitten love, whiskers and baby teeth, given in total appreciation for his rescue and unconditional love they bestow upon his small kittenself.