Possibility Revisited

~ Champagne  View ~

~ Champagne View ~ (Photo credit: ViaMoi)

Last Monday I posted this quote. This week I am reposting it with some context–it is my weekly column for the newspaper:

“When nothing is sure, everything is possible.” ~ Margaret Drabble, English author

“Things I Know for Sure” is a topic that Oprah takes on monthly in her magazine. She is sure about a lot of things, but I imagine a column called “Things I Do Not Know For Sure” would have a longevity far outlasting our lives on this earth.

Sure is a strong word, a confident word: one that should not be bandied about lightly. This I know for sure. When you start to work with a word whose cousins are unquestionable, undisputed, certain, definite, unerring, infallible, and accurate among others (sorry to the cousins, better known as synonyms I have left out) then you should be certain of what you are saying. I am hardly ever “certain” of what I am saying, as so many factors make up a situation.

I like Margaret Drabble’s quote that, “When nothing is sure, everything is possible” as it gives you leeway. If you know something for sure there is no wiggle room.  Sometimes you do not need wiggle room, but sometimes you do. And in that wiggle room there is space for possibility.

I am going to take on Oprah’s generous mantle and give you some examples of things that I do know for sure. There are certain givens when it comes to being sure about something—I know for sure that I love a variety of people in my life: my husband and kids and my family among them. But most of us know these things for sure. (Not all of us—some of us were given families that are hard to love—I was lucky in this respect). But here are some other things that I know for sure:

1. Even though this is the last week in February, and it seems like spring will never come– it will. For sure. And it will surprise us. Every year I am surprised when the trees bud and sprout leaves; when the daffodils show their frilly heads; when I no longer have to don coat and hat and mitts and boots to go out the door.

2. Unless there is some other reason to do so, I will always write up this column and council news as the deadline looms dangerously close. I wish I did not know this for sure.

Cat Woman had a Jet too!

Cat Woman had a Jet too! (Photo credit: Felix_Nine)

3. I will never become a cat woman. Or Cat Woman. The first because I only sort of like the cat we have (the one my family loves to bits); and I am too old to be cast in a Batman movie. Also, I am not an actress (though I am not sure this is a real prerequisite to playing Cat Woman). There are a number of other obvious reasons I could not be Cat Woman, but my ego is too fragile to go into them.

4. I will never become a gourmet cook unless I have someone to clean up after me.  Sure, I would love to cook to my heart’s content, and I admit my fast and frenzied time in the kitchen is cut short by the thought of having to clean up the mess I have made. I would even try recipes that have more than five ingredients and three steps if I had someone cleaning up the havoc I have wrought.

5. I will continue to spray Pledge in the air and put the vacuum out to make it smell and look like I care about a clean house. I do care about a clean house, but once I clean it, I would like it to stay that way. What I know for sure: it will never stay that way. (And for good reason—people have to live here.)

6. I know for sure that now that Council is only twice a month, there will be no more surprise meetings of less than an hour. I am sure this will not happen—if we get out of there in less than two hours it is a miracle. Then again, do we want the business of the municipality rushed? I think not—but I do remember those short meetings fondly.

7. I now know for sure that I will not get an exclusive interview with the Queen. First of all she has acquiesced to a number of interviews over the years; and second, it is not in this paper’s budget.

8. I know for sure that I will not be writing a column about all the things that I do not know for sure. I will save that for Volumes 1-13 on the subject. Each a thousand pages. There is a lot I do not know for sure.

So, you and I are just going to have to placate ourselves with the fact that knowing things for sure really does limit possibilities—and who would want that?

Possibility is the ultimate bliss–what do you think?

Published in: on February 25, 2013 at 3:52 pm  Comments (45)  
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Comforts ~ Day 6 Or I Did Not Kill the Cat!

bob

bob (Photo credit: kittykatfish)

I know this is not a very good title for a post about gratefulness. But I am going to be speaking on behalf of the family cat, Kitty Bob today. I am translating for him because I know he is very grateful. So in Kitty Bob’s words:

1.  I am grateful that my mistress did not use up one of my nine lives this morning after I peed on some very important papers that took her hours and hours of work to complete. They had mostly numbers on them and not words, so I know it was not the work she likes to do, but the work she has to do that I relieved myself on. I have heard her say many times that she does not like doing bookwork so I thought she would not mind. She did.

2.  I am overjoyed that my mistress did not bundle me up in a bag, tie it with twine and put me in the car and take me to the country and drop me off. I would have probably found my way back, but I do not think the reception would have been very warm.

3. I am thankful that she just yelled at me put and me in the basement and closed the door. I know she will feed me and she will forgive me as she always does. I also know that the three males in the family love me to death and will sneak me treat and hugs while I am being punished.

“I vow to make my mistress happy and to never pee on anything that should not be peed on again.” ~ Kitty Bob (my mistress made me say this, but there are just no guarantees—a cat has got to do what a cat has got to do.)

Published in: on August 17, 2012 at 9:30 pm  Comments (64)  
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Day 9 ~ 200 Words

Bob the Cat

Bob the Cat (Photo credit: CJ Sorg)

Kitty Bob is our family cat. My two sons and husband love this cat—I mean they really LOVE it. I like the cat. Therein lies the rub.

From my oldest son, I hear: “Mom, the cat is trying to get your attention. Pet the cat, he thinks you don’t love him.”

“Honey, look at the cat. The little kitty wants you to pet him. Isn’t he cute?” says my husband, known in some circles as the Cat Whisperer.

“Mom look, Kitty Bob loves you,” my youngest son will say, trying to get me to engage with the feline.

I am not taken in by these things. I know what the cat wants. The cat wants to be fed. All the time. The cat does not want me to pet him. He knows I am the keeper of the Meow Mix, and the only reason he rubs against my legs is to get me to feed him. It is ironic, that the only person in the house not in love with the cat is the only one who feeds him.

I feel deficient sometimes, like I am missing a gene or something.

Published in: on July 14, 2012 at 1:31 am  Comments (44)  
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Kitty Bob’s Excellent Adventure

tiger boy

tiger boy (Photo credit: torbakhopper)

Here is a Jeopardy answer for you:  A house cat. So what is the question?

What is one of the forms many people would like to live out their next life as? I read somewhere that if people were given a choice of how to come back in their next life they would come back as a house cat. I understand. This answer did not mystify me at all. As the owner of a house cat, I too would love to be fed on a regular basis without having to cook; given treats just because I am cute; curl up wherever I want and have a nap whenever I want; and have as many adventures as I desire, knowing I have a home to come back to where people love me and bask in my very presence.

Our family cat is named Kitty Bob, or as I like to call him the ‘luckiest cat on earth’.  The footprints of his muddy little paws are adored by at least three quarters of my family. He can do no wrong in their eyes.  Talk about unconditional love. Now, I have to admit, as the fourth quarter of this family, my  love for the cat is a bit conditional—he is not in my good books when, for whatever reason, he sometimes does the unmentionable on my mentionables.  Thankfully his indiscretions are fairly few and far between.

There is a bit of a controversy going on right now about whether cat owners should not allow their cats to roam at will outside. Some people want them to have a licence like a dog. I tried to keep Kitty Bob in the house, and not let him see the light of day from anywhere but a window, but he was not satisfied—he needed his adventures. I think it would be easier to keep a cat in the house or on a leash if that cat had never known free roaming freedom—but as a small kitten, Kitty Bob was somehow left to fend for himself and find his own home. He wandered the streets on Halloween night in 2006 following trick treaters, and the next day, found me on my early morning walk.

I don’t know why, but Kitty Bob adopted me. He had no way of knowing I am not innately an “animal person”.  I have never disliked animals, and I did have a pet cat about twenty some years ago (named Kitty—I am not really great in the business of cat naming).  They say things come into your life when you need them. I am not so sure I needed a cat, but the rest of my family certainly took to the idea. My husband is a bone fide “animal person”. In fact a friend of his asks him to come over and visit the family cat when they go on vacation. No kidding. He does not ask John to feed or take care of the cat as they have that covered by a neighbour. John did some work at this friend’s house and befriended their cat, who was not really friendly to strangers. Known in the small circle of our family as a “cat whisperer”—his reputation is now ever widening.

I am curious as to what our cat does and where he goes when he leaves the house. He is smart enough to come in out of the rain, and when he sticks his nose out the door, he kind of tests the waters—and if it is too cold, or the snow too high, he turns tail and decides that the warmth of the house is where he wants to be. But those other times–where does he go? We think that since night time is his favourite time to be outside, he parties hardy somewhere. Every once in a while, in his innocence, and true to his nature (as has been explained to me when I have reacted in disgust) he does bring us home an occasional “treasure”. Fortunately this does not happen too often, and many times when he sets his cargo free, it (in the form of a bunny) runs off (or in the form of a bird) flies away.  Mice have not been so fortunate though—although when we had a little problem with the critters in our basement a year ago, we think he made friends with them. I guess house mice are different than outside mice.

Kitty Bob does not talk much about his adventures. He lets us know when he is hungry or when he wants a snack.  He lets us know when he wants to go upstairs to the bathroom for a drink of running water from a tap (which John will readily run up and turn on for him), and he “tells” us when he wants to go outside. But he does not “kiss and tell” or ruminate about his adventures—he just goes out and does his rendition of “Indiana Jones”, then comes home to us, finds one of his favourite resting places and naps. Oh, the life!

Published in: on September 1, 2011 at 12:36 am  Leave a Comment  
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