Another Insane Devotion: On the Love of Cats and Persons by Peter Trachtenberg

By Peter Trachtenberg

From “a real American Dostoevsky” (The Washington Post): a stunning, humorous, bittersweet exploration of the mysteries of courting, either human and animal.

When his favourite cat Biscuit is going lacking, Peter Trachtenberg units out to discover her. the adventure takes him seven-hundred miles and lots of years into his past-- into the background of his relationships with cats and the historical past of his courting together with his spouse F., who may perhaps herself be at the verge of disappearing. What ensues is a piece that remembers shuttle narratives from The really good trip to W. G. Sebald’s The earrings of Saturn. Trachtenberg ponders the mysteries of pussycat intelligence (why do cats rating worse on a few checks than pigeons?), the origins in their domestication, their negative remedy throughout the center a while. He additionally appears on the riddle of why any folks loves whom we like and all of the unexpected locations to which that devotion leads us.

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Soon there were no bees by the back door. Then, in a coordinated assault, the landlord drilled a second hole in the office wall, and the two of us sprayed in more bug killer in unison. Along with the cans of Bee Gone, he’d brought along a sprayer, the kind with a pump that you see in old cartoons, with no markings on it, but he didn’t use that yet. The buzzing surged, and for a moment it was as if we were inside a huge electrical transformer. A curtain of insects blackened the air from above the window almost to the ground.

Everybody wanted them back then; it was the year of Beatle dolls. ’” Her smile had a child’s guilelessness. Just so a child might offer you a bouquet of wildflowers she’d picked from the side 0738215266-text_Layout 1 8/24/12 10:06 AM Page 24 24 P ETER T RACHTENBERG of the road. ” I know I reached for her, meaning to stroke her cheek. She shrank from me. The cool that had receded a little dropped back down like a visor, with an almost audible click. I was too mortified to apologize. It would be like apologizing for farting.

I was the one at the bottom. No one answered. Well, where F. was, it was long after midnight. She’d probably shut down her laptop for the night. Earlier in the day, she’d sent me an e-mail that ended with a question about the financial tidal wave that had begun sweeping the world a few weeks before, snatching up trillions of dollars in its rush. She wanted to know if we were going to lose our retirement savings. “Possibly yes,” I wrote back now. “I’ll tell you more yesterday. Bruno told me that Biscuit’s been gone for 2 days, and I’m sick with worry.

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