Winter hasn’t been kind to our outdoor cats. We’re down to one. That particular cat has been a total shithead all it’s life and nobody likes it; which explains its karma now.
It’s a kitten that showed up one day while I was trying to weld some shit in the garage. It approached the welder fearlessly (probably because it was hungry). Then it tried to steal a drink of my coffee. Any kitten willing to invade a garage with blaring heavy metal, risk annihilation from high voltage and sparks, and then steal some bearded maniac’s cup of coffee? That’s a bad ass kitten!
So I fed it, gave it water, and a few days later took it to the vet for “the standard feral cat package”. I thought I’d have a epic mouser. Instead the kitten repaid me by beating the living shit out of the other barn cats. Seriously, the damn thing was Stalin incarnate. Luckily the other cats had a couple pounds on him and toughed it out. Even so he grew up to be a bully and he utterly dominated the other cats. Until this winter.
All the other cats died (or vanished) in various manners (most were getting old and one may have tried to take on a coyote). This left “bully cat” to rule uncontested. Karma’s a bitch because a few weeks into it’s total dominance it had some sort of stroke. Now the damn thing has a 45 degree tile to it’s head (I harbor the suspicion that it’s a little nuts now too).
Formerly it was hell on wheels for killing critters. Now, not so much. I don’t know if it’s because of bad depth perception or because it’s brain is scrambled or because Karma likes to kick you in the balls; but now the cat couldn’t catch a squirrel with a land mine.
I saw him hunkered by the feeder. “Dude, kill a squirrel will ya?”
Quoth the cat “Snarf. Woophf. Yeep.”
“You’re fried aren’t you?”
“Nah. Snarf. I’m sorta’ here. Damn trees are all tilted though. Feed me!”
The cat wandered off and stood by his food bowl, yowling piteously, and looking at me with a tilted Popeye face that weirds me out.
If you want something done you gotta’ do it yourself.
Back at the office I grabbed an old air rifle and loaded it. (You mean you don’t have a half dozen weapons near your desk? Why?) I looked out the window. No squirrel. The dog was asleep. The cat was in the barn yowling for food. Squirrels are assholes.
Two hours later I was getting shit done when…
RAUGH GROWL SNARL RAUGH RAUGH GROWL SNARL RAUGH RAUGH RAUGH GRRRR AARRRR GROWL SNARL RAUGH RAUGH
The squirrel was outside the window ignoring the chaos within. I reasoned with the dog “SHUT THE HELL UP!” and slipped the window open. I had a great shot but I’m not sure about pellet guns.
I wish I’d grabbed my .22. I know where that bad boy will hit. The air rifle was just a whim and I was regretting it. Not being 100% super spot on trusting in the point of aim in the air rifle I decided I should get a better shot.
I slipped out the door, rounded the barn, and crept closer. Now here’s where I admit a human failing. I take marksmanship too seriously.
Pellet guns seem weak and it’s a single shot and (lets face it) missing is for pussies. So I crept closer.
Meanwhile the dog was tearing the house apart and the squirrel was chowing down on my chickadee feed.
I didn’t want my nice feeder damaged so I aimed carefully in case the tiny pellet would overpenetrate and ding the wood. Deep breath, let it out, squeeeeeezee.
The pellet gun fired like a tractor taking a dump. It vibrated, made a weird sound, I got it super cheap and it’s probably totally inaccurate. The trigger pull is like a bad clutch on a lawnmower. It’s junk.
I watched the target.
Oh! Well then. I guess there’s more velocity to a pellet gun than I’d thought.
Then I realized squirrel blood was all over my cool little feeder. Damn!