Monday, November 20, 2006

Pet Fancy

I've always been fairly cool towards pets, understandably: I'm allergic to most of them, and since this trait runs in the family we never had pets at home. Pets are likely to strike me as inconvenient or unsympathetic just out of hand. But now and then I can be surprised how much I hit it off with an animal.

My college friend Blair & her boyfriend (their apartment a port of call in Cambridge this weekend) have a couple of cats, one of whom is particularly friendly & spent most of a post-brunch half hour sprawled soft & warm in my lap as I petted his back. And wonder of wonders, I'm not allergic to their apartment at all, at least for a couple of hours on a generic loratadine.

I haven't had a friendly cat in my lap since I was about eight, I think, when our aunt Ellen's cat Kitty was still young & hadn't gotten ornery yet. After so much time, nearly two decades after last holding a happy cat, it's like hey, I really am missing something here. What a wonderful feeling.

Meanwhile, my work friend Karen recently obtained a totally adorable corgi puppy, and she brings her to work most Fridays. This is a sweet, cute, lovable dog, doing that little pattering kind of dog-jog around the office, and I'm massively allergic to her, such that ruffling her fur behind the ears for thirty or forty seconds will make me start sniffling. So I have to take that secondhand pet-happiness in small doses, or at a bit of distance.

That's my recent softening up towards pets. I have a sinking feeling that within a few years I'll start feeling this way about other people's kids, too.


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