Here's a real hair-raising story from today's Washington Post: Over the weekend, police and animal control officials entered the home of Ruth Knueven in Mount Vernon, Virginia, where they literally stumbled upon 273 cats--86 of them dead. Authorities responded after receiving neighborhood complaints of a foul odor emanating from the Knueven house. As of yesterday, writes Post staff writer Leef Smith, "Cats were still being plucked from the house ... extracted from the walls and from deep within the brick chimney." Needless to say, the house, described as "overflowing with feline feces and urine," has since been condemned. But the real shocker is this: Knueven doesn't live alone. In fact, the 82-year-old is married and has a daughter, all of whom reside there.
I am sure this all started as a selfless act of taking in a stray. (Even my sister and her husband took in a feral kitten that has practically become the subject of every single conversation I have with them. It usually starts with, "You'll never guess what Dusty did today!") In any event, even if the Knuevens meant well, their domicile is simply not equipped to handle such numbers. Besides that, where does the family eat and sleep? Sadly the cats are now destined for destruction.
I know what you're thinking. Thank God we made it through this item without the usual eye-rolling puns. But suddenly I am feeling possessed by the spirit of Gene Shalit, who is now in command of my keyboard:
What a cat-astrophe! What a purr-dicament! Talk about cats on a hot tin roof! Get MEOWt of here!
Gene could've said more, but he wasn't feline like it. (His spirit is now commanding me to get lunch.)
5 hours ago