Before writing my blog yesterday I opened my rear window to water the plants on my fire escape. The air here yesterday was, as you may know, quite temperate so I left the window open without a screen. (All the nasty bugs have hid for the winter). So twenty or thirty minutes later I noticed that my usual companion, my cat Lucy, was missing. In the bedroom I called out, “Lucy?”
In the living room, kitchen, and bathroom: “Lucy?” No answer. Okay, I thought. She’s sleeping under the bed or in that box under the kitchen table. Nope. I looked straight at the open window, walked over to it and shouted: “Lucy?”
One more cursory check of my apartment, then back out to the fire escape. The little fuzzball had climbed down the steps to the floor below me and was meowing for me to come and help her. Ah, yes, I thought. You know how to climb down perfectly, but to climb back up again, that is the tough part. (!) So I quickly donned my shoes and prayed to the god of rusty old fire escapes that the thing wouldn’t break under my weight. About a month ago the floor below me was burglarized during the day when someone climbed the fire escape and entered through the open window. And here I am, I thought, climbing down the fire escape in just the same way. I hoped my neighbor didn’t own a gun.
Lucy let me pick her up, and I said to her as I climbed the stairs, “Don’t you dare jump! I can’t catch you if you do.” She meowed the whole way up, digging her claws into my shoulder. I let her go at the top and she leapt back inside. She seemed none the worse for the adventure, though she did check her food twice to make sure it was there. Then she slept for the rest of the day. I guess the event had worn her out.
I suppose she couldn’t resist the smell of the autumn air yesterday, and her instincts drew her out as far as she could go. I’m only glad there wasn’t a stairwell going all the way down to the first floor. She might have wandered off into the yard.
Another question: Why do writers like to talk about their cats? Do cats have some kind of hypnotic power that influences us and makes them take up a portion of our thoughts? It would help with their survival. They’re like tribbles.
Ever wonder if there is more to Chicago’s architecture than the public is keen to? Check out this guided tour by Kenneth Hite. From the brochure: “Were the street plans for the great American cities laid out like circuit boards to channel psychic energies, with steel-girdled skyscrapers designed as capacitors to store up these forces until they were needed for some cosmic ritual? (The Ghostbusters script could well be calculated misinformation, or a nod to fellow initiates).”
And here’s the kind of thinking I like. Lior Hessel has come up with the idea of using discarded cargo containers and growing organic food inside them. Under robotic control, Hessel says the labor would be the cost of one monitoring technician. I wonder, though, how the organic purists would feel about their crops being grown under artificial lighting?