Ashley and I live in Sharpsburg, but our families both live in Clear Spring, about halfway across the county. It takes only thirty minutes or so to get there, but we are nostalgic saps who spend Christmas Eve with out mommies and daddies anyway. For the last two years, this has meant that Ottie has been all by herself on Christmas. She is a cat and does not give a shit about any of this, but we still feel bad about it.
This year, we tried to make it up to her by getting her some gifts and presenting them to her on the day after Christmas. In Europe and Australia, all throughout the good ole Commonwealth of Nations, December 26 is known as Boxing Day. From this year on in the Steve and Ashley house, the day will be known as Ottie-mas.
Ashley had made her a stocking out of an old red silk shirt a few weeks ago, decorated it with cotton balls and glitter glue — it looks really cool. Yesterday we waded into the sea of post-Christmas shoppers at Wal-Mart in order to get a few things to fill it. We decided on a spinning wire contraption with various jingly and brightly colored targets for her to swat at, a stuffed bird on a little wooden fishing pole for us to taunt her with, and a little red stuffed bird with a long yellow beak and a pissed-off look on its face. The backing card of the last one informed me that the bird was bred to be confrontational. Ottie has enjoyed pretending to kill it so far, I think.
She is a good kitty. She deserved a nice Ottie-mas. Her mama and I were only too happy to furnish her one. Hopefully Ottie will remember this should tragedy strike and Ashley and I be struck suddenly dead, and refrain from dining on our corpses or defecating in our hollowed-out torsoes right away.