My Cat is a Slutty Welfare Mom

First, let me say that I am borderline socialist in my views on how government should protect, empower, and support its people.  I pay my taxes and take comfort in the knowledge that, heaven forbid I should suffer a traumatic brain injury and be unable to contribute to society, society will contribute to me.  I find value in supporting those who can only pay us back in ways that cannot be measured.  I know that there are those who abuse the system, but I would rather support ten who are undeserving than forsake one in need. Regardless, the relationship between our family and one of our feral cats follows the same paradigm as the stereotypes about the government and a lazy, slutty, unrepentant welfare mom.

Speaking strictly in stereotypes, “Focaccia” is a bad mother, if for no other reason than she’s “just a girl who can’t say no.”  (Do you have that song from “Oklahoma” in your head now?  I sure do.)

Funny story about her name:  “Focaccia” was what my ex wanted to name our daughter before she was born.  “You want to name her after bread? Why not Pumpernickle?” I had asked, with disbelief and snarkiness.  He thought this was a great idea.  He also wanted to name her “Grover” if she was a boy, but I refused to consider naming my child after a fuzzy blue Muppet or a corpulent president.

Focaccia is very free with her favors to the opposite sex. She accepts the advances of our neighbors, “Mario”, “Jimmy”, and “What cat is that? I’ve never seen him before.” And she seems determined to continue in her kitten-producing ways. Though we have trapped, neutered, and released almost all of our feral cats, she continues to elude us. Focaccia sits at the back door and cries, bemoaning her fate and begging for a handout. As soon as she gets a snack she becomes indignant, saying, “What you lookin’ at? You ain’t never seen a poor cat before?” While the other cats find a mouse here of there, or a tasty bird, she lounges around in a state of ovulation, pregnancy, or lactation. When we see that she has a troop of kittens following her around, we give her more and better food to help support them and get them off to a good start. Occasionally we have to go all CPS on her ass and take a kitten away for its own good, like the time one of her kittens got stuck in a tight space next to the house; Focaccia had apparently decided that if she was too dumb to get herself unstuck that she couldn’t be bothered.

Someday, she will finally grow weary of her liaisons with every Tom-cat, Dick-cat, and Hairy-cat and will blithely walk into one of the traps for a trip to the clinic. But until that day, we will continue to enable her questionable lifestyle, and try our best to value her differing perspective on life, love, and reproduction.

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