I want to tell you about how music has become a very important element in my life these days, but I hesitate to share with you why that is.
It has to do with spanking the cat.
While music has, of course, always had a role in my life, I am not like other people in that I don’t have a library of tunes, I don’t have a playlist. I don’t even have a player. I couldn’t name the top 10 to save my life.
It has always been thus. When I was a teen, I was terrified of concerts. I don’t know which was worse – the raging multitude in the audience, the blinding and disorienting strobe lights, or the eardrum-puncturing volume.
Over the years, I bought a few tapes and CD’s. Because that’s what you do, if you are a member of law-abiding society. I played them in the car while commuting. But for the last ten years or so, the player has been silent. Even the radio.
I used to sing. When I was a girl, I sang in the church choir. As an adult and when I was living with The Performer, I used to sing in his choir. That was a ton of fun. I particularly miss the after-rehearsal impromptu gatherings around the piano when we’d belt out barbershop quartets.
Somewhere along the way, though, I lost my wind. That is, I could no longer hold my breath and sing like before. Sure, I could hum, I could mumble and murmur and mimic a familiar tune, but sing it out loud and lustily?
Not on your Aunt Fanny’s fanny.
However, on the cat’s fanny? Well, that’s a different tune, altogether.
Late last autumn, Black Cat was in the bathroom with me while I brushed my teeth. He was rubbing up against my legs as cats are inclined to do when they want attention.
Fine. I bent down and began to rub his back, to scratch him under the chin, to pat him on his butt. He enjoyed that. He wanted more.
OK, why not?
I assumed a squat on the rug, and began to play bongo on his belly. I started to sing “Bongo Belly”. You know, “Bongo-bongo-bongo Bongo-Bell-EE. Bongo-Bell-EE! My hands beating out the rhythm on his hind end.
He loved it! He purred and rolled over and when I suggested it was time to call it quits, he protested and demanded an encore.
I obliged. I sang Christmas carols but instead of the usual lyrics, I sang “Bum-bum-bum, Bum-bum-bum, Bum-Bum all the way!” Again, gently, but firmly, I bongo’d on his butt.
The next night, we repeated the earlier performance. But instead of the squat, (oh, my aching knees!) I sat on a small three-legged stool. I sang Darling Clementine, I’ve Been Working on the Railroad, and a particular favourite of his, The Lion Sleeps Tonight.
Instantly, this became a nightly ritual. The moment he heard the electric toothbrush, Black Cat raced to the bathroom and presented his belly at my feet.
It is interesting to note, that no matter what song I sang, nothing got quite the same intense reaction as Bongo Belly.
Oscar, meanwhile, began to take notice.
As did Reiner.
To make a long story short, day or night, today, both cats will run to the bathroom, or any other room where there is carpet, assume “the position” – that is, hind end up, and purring like crazy – and they will demand and receive, Bongo Belly’s. From either one of us. Sometimes, two cats at once. In stereo, if you will.
Both Reiner and I are singing our hearts out these days – ad libbing all the way. It’s so cool to have music in the house. Even though I could never, EVER tell anyone about spanking the cats.
Categories: Daily Post
Tags: daily prompt