A LITTLE KITTEN
Burritos and pizzas are indeed mighty fine foodstuffs.
But not, strictly speaking, a sound diet.
A man needs green sh*t.
[Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Thursday. Four days work total. Tonight's dinner: a cabbagey vegetable, crisp and green, with sliced chicken, and black bean sauce.]
By the way, it's starting to disturb me that folks on the street and in the bus have begun to greet me. All white people do NOT look alike, apparently some of us resemble fellow villagers. Which is something I didn't even consider for a long time. Ever since I left Valkenswaard, in fact.
Maybe they're just recognizing the goatee and the pipe, although eight Cantonese folks said nei ho to me when I wasn't even smoking.
A middle-aged dude with glasses is quite harmless.
Plus I'm relatively neat, and act un-crazy.
Yes, I know. That's tantamount to admitting that I am neither creative nor sensitive, which is a grievous flaw in my character. Meaningful poetry signifies nothing to me, and I'm never going to play drums.
I do not own a pair of yoga pants.
I have no tattoos.
Animals also recognize my complete harmlessness.
Years ago I realized that cats and dogs often will treat me as a safe and interesting quantity. Especially if they are still very young, such as the pretty little kitten in Spofford Alley, who completely ignored everyone else except me. She just wouldn't let me pass. I was forced to bribe her with ten minutes of petting before I could leave. It was probably the comforting and home-like reek of pipe tobacco and cigarillos that adheres to me, though most people won't notice unless I energetically flap my armpits at them.
Subtle for humans, but obvious for animals.
I do believe I must smell good.
Just like grandpa.
Once upon a time I thought of myself as dashingly risky and adventurous. Dangerous, sort of like a mercenary or a ranch hand, albeit urban, settled, and civilized. But in any case a bold and stalwart type. Which wasn't quite sane if you consider that I've never killed a man nor ridden a wild horse, and the prospect of wrestling bears and alligators has no appeal.
I do not want to get too close to either of those beasts.
You should not scratch an alligator affectionately.
Or belly-rub a big fuzzy bear in the Sierras.
They would probably take it amiss.
And they have teeth.
Actually, I have this vision of bears and alligators lying in wait for me rather like bestial mafiosi, who will demand to be petted or else.
That pretty little kitten in Spofford Alley recognized me immediately as a great big pussy cat. Not only harmless, but a soft touch too. So easy to strong-arm into ten minutes of gentle scritchies and backrubs, despite the fact that getting so low to the ground was painful, and I had things to do.
Eventually I finished my pipe on a bench in Hang Ah Alley.
Now there are five cats in Chinatown that know me.
I shall not provide you with fresh fish.
Your cuteness has no effect.
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