I got my first cat-related puncture wound today. I know what you're thinking: "You have a cat? You hate cats!" That I do. Or rather I had convinced myself I hated cats. See, I'm very allergic to their dander--so allergic that I've been known to walk into a cat-infested home and immediately begin sneezing.

Let's be clear: it's an outside cat. Period. No matter how soft-hearted I am and no matter how cold it gets, it will not enter the allergy-free zone of our home. And by "allergy-free" I mean cat-allergy-free zone--we've got piles of dust that have formed interest groups and theological debating clubs. It sleeps on the porch in a make-shift recycling bin bed and I took it to the vet for the first time today. Her name should have been something like Mahitabell or Patricia or St. Swithen but she's ended up as Kit-Kat. I saw all the deeds that are done under the sun; and see, all is vanity and a chasing after wind. Kit-Kat experienced some trepidation when the crate came out. After a few minutes of the nice method, i.e. my putting delicious food in the crate and waiting for her to go inside so I could close the cage, I gave up and just crammed her in there, legs akimbo and protesting loudly. I got scratched on my stomach for my troubles and then later at the vet she swiped with her savage claws and I began bleeding profusely from three punctures in my fingers. All the while she was either crying piteously or making a small, domesticated cat version of a roar. Very disconcerting. But, she's home, she's had shots and topical applications and has been cleared for spaying sometime in the near future.

And before you ask, I will absolutely NOT be one of those people with "My cat is smarter than your honor student" bumper stickers or cute kitten Christmas cards or any other cat-themed merchandise. Be warned--if it is given, even in jest, it will end up in the dumpster. All that said, I love Kit-Kat. She's surprisingly affectionate. She's beautiful. And I've never had a pet all my own (read: that I have to feed and pay for all it's vet bills).