I first met him in college. My Chaucer professor hosted a storytelling competition at her home; he was amongst the first to greet me. His name, Eric the Pink . . .
Handsome and debonair, he struck a noble profile. Most certainly his lineage was great and yet he remained quite content to mingle with the common folk. While his sister glared in disgust, he meandered from person to person, a dustmop of a tail his banner. Should you ignore him, he would yap, rather loudly, until you snapped to attention. Understandable, really, for his angora-like coat, so soft and silky, demanded extra pets.
In his nearly nineteen years, he served as faithful companion to a certain medievalist. As a gentlemen, he kindly moved over when she fell in love with another fellow; and when the two of them returned from China with a sweet little girl, Eric the Pink was right there to welcome her home.
Old age did not curtail his lively pursuits. He read books over breakfast, starred in a ‘cat ballet’, and even took to marrying Jennifer the snow leopard, of the house of stuffed animal.
As you may have guessed, the years granted me a friend of my professor; and Eric the Pink took up residence in my heart, as one of my own. Admittedly, I shed more than a few tears upon hearing the time had come to bid him adieu.
Now why, you ask, would I share such sad news on a Friday–the day I normally send you good tidings? Well, it seems to me, every once in awhile God sends along the faithful-est of companions. Sometimes they just happen to walk on all fours, and are wrapped in fur. They’re the ones who love with the fiercest of loves, in good times and in bad. And I just can’t imagine a better wish.
So here’s to you and someone to love who’s pure and true. And if he or she happens to be of the fury variety, perhaps a few extra kisses and pets would do . . .
With much love and many good wishes, today and the whole weekend through!