The quick brown fox jumped over the good, but lazy Parker family.

edgar and emily: caterwauling

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


one more edgar/emily story, and then i’m done.

fast forward a couple of years from the last story, after the “previous administration” and i had moved up to savage, maryland (2000?) and into a little three bedroom house across from the historic Savage Mill.

we known since day one that Edgar had a rather robust set of vocal chords, and had a constant struggle trying to get him to shut the heck up. (Emily, for some reason another, was as quiet as her brother was annoying.)

shortly after we moved into the new place, the problem escalated to the point that he was waking us up at 2am every morning — just parked outside the bedroom door, caterwauling in what was obviously an attempt to raise the dead.

after about of month, we finally got fed up and talked to the vet out of sheer exasperation. she calmed us down, and recommended we get a spray bottle, fill it up with water, and put it by the door. each time Edgar caterwauled, we were to open up the door, give him a squirt or two in the face, and firmly say: “No.”

she said within a week or so, Edgar would learn.

that very night, i woke up at 2am to Edgar caterwauling — i grabbed the bottle, i opened the door, i gave him a squirt, and told him “no.” the next night, i did the same. and the next night. and the next. two weeks later, i was still getting up, still opening the door, and still hosing down the cat. (NOTE: my way of saying “no” may have become more crass as the days turned into weeks.)

by the third week, i had developed insomnia (wonder why?) and was up working on the computer in the front room when the 2am caterwauling began. caught completely off guard, i ran towards the bedroom just in time to see …

Emily caterwauling …

… the bedroom door handle turning, Emily running off, the door opening, and finally Edgar getting hosed down with the spray bottle for the 21st consecutive night.

It had been Emily all the time.

Interesting to note that Emily was smart enough to run away when the door started to open, and Edgar was stupid enough to sit there and get hosed down each night. He probably though we were giving him a bath.

The next night we started sleeping with the bedroom door open, with Emily asleep (soundly, quietly) under the foot of the bed.