Okay, it’s Frankie time. It’s the night of February 14, three years ago. I’m going out to drop off the trash in the apartment complex compactor outside. It’s cold out, but that’s okay because it’s not a far walk so I’m only wearing a long sleeved shirt. I approach the complex and I spot a partially grown kitten. The kitten spots me, perks up, and immediately runs towards me as if she’s won the lottery. It’s almost as if she’s been waiting for me. I drop off the trash, play with her, and decide to come back with K and a handful of food. She looks awfully hungry.

Fast forward to now. Frankie healed the cut on her lip and instead of sleeping amongst the trash during a sudden snowstorm later that night, slept on my chest after purring herself to sleep. She’s got her shots, and the other cats have accepted her as a reality that isn’t going away. She got through her kitten phase, praise the maker, and gets lots of regular feedings, a warm set of feet (mine) to sleep on every night, and many toys. Pamper = To The Max.

K and I named her Frankie after the character Angelina Jolie plays in the movie Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. Frankie is adorable. If you don’t agree, please report to the nearest reactor and volunteer for shielding tests! There’s a whole story about my hatred of cats that I will relate at another time. All you need to know is that I’ve had my Road To Damascus moment and really dig feline critters now.

Frankie, unlike most cats I’ve known, loves to have a leash put on her and walk around the neighborhood like a canine critter. One of her many names is “Frankie-doggins”. She gets really upset if I don’t take her out for a walk during the day, or hunting for moths at night. Its kind of weird how well behaved, and mischievous she is at the same time. When I look in her eyes, there’s an intelligence that goes beyond what I see in the other two cats, Michael and Blink.

I don’t know what it is about the time period from about 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm, but Frankie does some kind of “super-activating” and gets really rambunctious. She’ll usually be asleep in the bedroom absorbing major Slack points. Then, all of a sudden, she activates. Only it’s not the usual activation of a cat going into patrol and beg mode. Nope, she initiates what K and I can only describe as “the Frankie Tricksy Hour”. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing at the moment it begins, for the next 25-35 minutes you are in the Tricksy Hour Zone, where madness reigns supreme!

That’s right, it’s an “hour”, even though technically only 25-35 minutes pass. You’re on Tricksy time, and it’s time to pay the piper. Frankie begins jumping onto counters and shelves and knocking things over. Not big things, little things. Pens. Keys. Magazines. Papers. She’ll look at you as if it wasn’t her, but the Not Me Goblin who did that. She’ll wait until you are looking away, and do it again. You get up and chastise her, and she meows at you like you’re being mean. You put her on the ground, and a few minutes later she leaps up and starts doing it again. Frankie will then change her tactics and come up to you to begin meow bombing. Unlike Michael’s shrill and incessant artillery barrage, however, Frankie’s meow bombs are sweet and heartrendingly cute. “Please? Oh please? Won’t you do whatever it is?” Nope, she can’t tell you what it is. Good luck finding out!

Emergency thrusters engage! Frankie’s tail goes poof, like a huge raccoon brillo pad, and she runs through our home in bursts of speed, then looks to see if anyone is watching her. Random meows ensue, then she’s off again, up and down the stairs. She looks out the windows and meows some more. What? Is there a giant cheeseburger out there or something? If, at this point, you don’t get what she’s going on about, then she repeats the cycle and goes back to knocking things over. Humans can be so dense sometimes!

Yup, she wants me to grab the leash and harness, and take her out on a walk. There’s meeses, and cheeseburgeroids, and probably an ani-mani-mal or two out there. She’s got to make her patrol because it’s the moment of super-psychic fluctuations in the space time continuum. Ugh, but K and I are busy doing chores, watching the Netflix Channel, or writing/playing games on the computer. It’s your choice. Take care of business, or suffer the Tricksy Hour until you are free. Frankie comes up and rubs her head against you and starts to purr. Who knew being lazy could be so much torture?

But that’s the price you pay for having a super-cat living in your home. Duty calls, and the safety and security of the free world depend on your help! No vacations when you’re the sidekick of an animal with super-powers. Who knew I was volunteering my home’s services as a Cat-cave with high tech gadgets and neat-o costumes? Yep, just call me Leash-boy. At your service, mighty Frankie! Golly gee wilikers! Let’s go foil those meeses but good! Frankie says, “Later leash-boy. First let me roll around in these pine needles and search for booby traps.” Sigh. The glory.