If you’re not a crocheter, I don’t suppose anything about these two hexagons looks particularly hard, but these were, in fact, two of the  hardest things I’ve ever crocheted. In the one on the left, each stitch in the increasing rows is a different color, which, in real life means that each stitch is two different colors. Like, to make a double crochet, you wrap the yarn once around your hook (a yarn over), you put your hook through the piece where you want your stitch to go. You grab the yarn with your hook and pull it through your piece, then you grab it again and pull it through two loops on your hook and again, grab the yarn and pull it through two loops on your hook.

The important thing for this discussion is that the loop that’s on your hook to start with is the top of the stitch. So, the last thing you do on the stitch before becomes the top of your next stitch.

So, if you want your stitch to appear to be all one color, you need to build the stitch before it so that the last thing you do is draw through the color of the next stitch.

It’s a hard and weird rhythm to get into. And your yarn twists like a motherfucker. The one on the right involved carrying the black in the yellow stitches, which you can kind of see if you look too closely, and tucking in a lot of yellow ends.

I think the orange cat is dying. Or, rather, I think when I take him to the vet, the options are going to be “do a lot of shit for him that will keep him alive a little longer, but he’s 18” or “let him go.”

He’s peeing everywhere. He’s always been a spite pee-er, and I assumed the murder of my Roomba last week was in retaliation for some imagined slight.

But this morning, he peed on the floor of my room and he looked up at me wide eyed and confused. I just don’t think there was any time between “you need to pee” and “you are peeing” for him.

It’s the Butcher’s cat. The Butcher is out of town for his anniversary.

Since the cat doesn’t appear to be in any physical pain (though who can tell with a cat), I’m not doing anything today. I want to wait until the Butcher gets home tonight and talk things over with him. I don’t mind taking the orange cat to the vet alone, but I don’t want to spring it on the Butcher. If it’s not an emergency, I don’t want to take the cat to the vet without telling the Butcher that’s what’s happening.

I just want to cry about it, but I also am filled more with dread than sadness.

My heart is breaking. I just assumed he’d go out in a fight or an explosion. I didn’t prepare for frail and afraid.

6 thoughts on “Stripes

  1. I’m sorry it’s getting close to time for the orange cat. I have 2 elderly, arthritic dogs that I suspect are going to live longer than their pain meds can work. Life and death with pets is hard.

  2. And I’m really liking the black and yellow variations-I want to squosh the 3d ones especially.

  3. Letting go of living beings whose time it is is easier than letting go of those who die too young only in the sense that it’s not shocking. Otherwise, it’s just as rough, really. In my experience, at least.

  4. Your last paragraph just chilled me because it explained everything about our 17 year old warrior queen cat that died the day of the eclipse in August. The only other conceivable option was that she’d ascend to heaven in a chariot pulled by lessor cats while being saluted by a heavenly host of heavily armed Viking cats.

    Instead she had a sudden and steady decline and we drove to the vet knowing full well what we were going to have to do for her.

    Any pet’s death is so, so hard.

  5. It’s time. He can’t be left to wonder why he can no longer control his own urination. I was told, when I and a friend took an equally old cat to the vet, that at that extreme old age, death tends to manifest as kidney failure, which was what was happening to the cat in that case. The thing they had to make us understand that kidney failure is incredibly painful, so it was important to not delay the end.

    I’m so sorry.

    Researchers on shock and stress have been saying in recent years that the death of a companion animal causes as much physical and medical hurt as the death of a human family member, and that’s it’s important not to discount it.

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