this evening, i petted him lightly on his shoulder and he suddenly went crazy, like kinda had a fit -- or an anxiety attack, as my sister calls it -- from it. my family has experienced it before but this is the first of guy's fits i've witnessed. i was horrified and felt so, so, so, so bad that i had unwittingly set it off. after he seemed to have gotten over the fit, i immediately tried to make amends by giving him some food and refilling the water in his bowl -- which is really nothing much at all -- only to be described as "pretending to be sympathetic" to the cat.
if i had a kid and i accidentally, perhaps out of a moment's neglect, caused the kid to fall and hit his head and start bawling, i would feel the same and do the same. i would sayang him, say how so, so, so, so sorry i am and offer him food, candy, or some form of distraction; i would be extra gentle with him for a while after that. any normal human being would do the same. guybrush is a kid to me.
there are many things i am unhappy about over this situation, which i don't really want to have to detail here; humane, proposed solutions have all been shot down. i would dig into my savings, give up my three-months deposit and put down a new one for a bigger, pets-allowed apartment and fly him back with me if i did not already know that the journey itself would probably kill him.
a poor, old, sick cat who has no means of effectively communicating his pain and discomfort and bewilderment and unhappiness does not deserve to be treated like a pariah in his own home, 24 hours a day. when i was a kid, i was taught -- given frequent references to real-life human examples of the opposite behaviour in people i actually knew -- about kindness, empathy, that poor, old, sick people -- even animals -- should not be treated like that. guybrush is a person to me.
i do hate, and it is heartbreaking for me, to have what i learnt was a cruel, detestable human nature play out in front of me towards this member of my family whom i love quite unconditionally and have spent the past 14 years with. guybrush is better than any human being; in all his scratching, biting, begging for food, purposeful pooping on shoes, he will never even near that familiar level of malice, manipulation, cruelty and destructive anger a person can have and use. he of all people deserves my unconditional love.
my attitude today towards my cat should be a reflection of how my attitude will be in future towards people in similar situations. please bear that in mind when you try to tell me how to treat my cat.