Monday, July 20, 2009

Queen of the Garden

“There’s been another kill!”

The daybreak headlines from around our house have, of late, included enumeration of the nighttime conquests of our jet black Whiskered Wrongdoer, Camille.

Plaintive, still-of-the-night meows typically alert us when a successful night of hunting has occurred. The only element of surprise is who, exactly, has succumbed to the nighttime carnage.

Initially, it was just this guy:

He may look innocent like an innocent designer screen wipe, but to Camille’s predator gaze this seemingly innocuous toy/tool combo is public enemy #1. Making regular prone appearances on thresholds and belly up on carpets, this poor creature has been killed more times than Kenny.

Over time, Camille’s thirst for fluff has rendered her emboldened. She’s been stalking larger prey from higher shelves, putting the stuffed community on notice that it’s open season.

We emerge, then, from our respective bedrooms , stepping gingerly around a trail of carcasses. The body count typically consists of a couple of downed finger puppets, a washcloth folded in the likeness of a baby bunny, and a handful of small creatures of the beanie/stuffed variety.

For several weeks and counting, I’ve been trying to obtain footage of a kill for documentary purposes. I keep my digital camcorder at the ready, prepared to move in at the faintest wail. When readiness alone yielded disappointing results, I’ll admit to baiting the cat by planting favorite nemeses in provocative positions throughout the home. Although the creatures invariably turned up limp in doorways , or out of doors altogether-- as the dogs dutifully drag the kill out to the lawn--it didn’t go down in my viewfinder.

“Just think, Mom, the National Geographic photographers are out in the wild for months, and even they might only get one good shot,” my son consoled me. I suppose he has a point. To date, all I have to show for myself are clips of the after-the-fact variety:

Undaunted, I continued my attempts to film the phenomenon, grabbing my camcorder just the other day when sounds of a rare daytime kill pierced the home. Walk with me, if you will, to witness the crime first hand:

Now, I know there wasn’t much in the way of action, here, but did you happen to get a good look at the perp? Recall from the written description and prior video that our Feline of Interest is solid jet black. Replay the footage, if you must, but the stripy gray hide and white nose of this suspect is a tell tale indicator that what we’re dealing with here is a copycat crime. Worse, according to Wikipedia, my fascination with documenting the delinquency may have encouraged, or even caused it. “Sensational publicity about violent murders or suicides to result in more of the same through imitation,” reads the Wikipedia entry on the Copycat Theory. The entry continues with an even more troubling assessment of my copy kitty’s mental health and stability:

It has been shown that most of the persons who do mimic crimes seen in the media (especially news and crime movies) have in most cases prior criminal records, prior severe mental health problems or histories of violence suggesting that the effect of the media is indirect (more affecting criminal behaviour) rather than direct (directly affecting the number of criminals. It has also been seen that there is a certain small population of people who are at more risk for harmful media influences than the general audience.

As bad as the Wikipedia report appears, it fails to cover what is, perhaps, the most troubling element of the whole sordid affair. That green blob that Little Xerox decided to take down? It’s a knitted shamrock.


Jen said...

LOL.. that was too funny.. I was reading at work and had to stifle the giggles. You may need to plant some hidden cameras... the real question is, what happens when you catch them? Criminals must pay for their crimes!

Princess Elwen said...

No comment, Auntie "Kate".........


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