This Cat was tired. He was tired of being one of 300,000 cats on the big Island competing for scraps to eat just to survive. It got so bad, He stowed away on a tourist boat to Maui but the cat overflow issue was just as dire, and those damn Maui cats, as scroungy as they were, still had that Maui uppity attitude. You know the cat, thinks he’s the koolest cat in the island with three legs and seemingly an un-treatable case of lice. So Cat hooked it back to the big Island, making up his mind that things would be different for him. This was a Cat to be reckoned with.
He was a feline in his prime – a fine looking tabby with piercing blue eyes who carried himself well. His fanatic exercise regimen and his insurmountable charm had the queens scratching each other eyes out to gain this Cat’s favor.
Well, as you would expect, feral Island cats are not adorned with silly names like Pumpkin, Dude, Chucky or Otis, and this cat decided his first step to respectability was to name himself. Standing in front of a mirror, he thought to himself, “damn, that is a handsome Cat”. From that point on, the cat thought of himself as Pōpoki Nani or “handsome cat” and this would be the name of his new restaurant. He was bound and determined to separate himself from the clowder of cats on the big Island.
This Cat decided to go into business, The business genes ran in his family but the cat was unwilling to join his brother in his cat box cleaning company, or join his father, Tom, who was reputedly one of the finest mousers on the island and his crew was always in demand. He sure as hell wasn’t going to clean cat boxes, and he just was not cut out to be a full-time mouser. He had grander plans…..tastier plans.
And for an always hungry cat, there is no business like the restaurant business. But this venture is going to take a partner with hands vs. paws as there is only so much a cat can do in the kitchen but jump on the counters and supervise, both qualities that the Cat is eminently qualified to fulfill.
Human, human, human, where was a cat to find a human to do the cooking? Given that this was a socially conscious cat, he decided to visit the Human Society…now please don’t get this confused with the Humane society. As Cat sauntered down the aisle observing all types of humans looking for a new home, he just may have finally found his man! The big bearded Hawaiian never thought he would be adopted by a cat, but he had been locked down in the Human Society for several weeks and his time was just about up, if you know what I mean. He had experience as a cook at one of the fancy beachfront properties and had just landed in hard times. Fortunately, the human was already neutered so that would save the cat some shekels. So, after a few inoculations, some paperwork & 50 bucks, the cat had himself a Cook.
As Cat and the Cook departed the Human Society, Cat continued to fall behind and bellowed “Cook!” Cook just kept on trucking and Cat again, yelled “Cook!” to no avail as he preceded Cat by several paces and didn’t even look back. “he’s already walking out on me and there isn’t even a restaurant yet – as he dropped to all fours and scampered ahead, skidded to a stop in front of Cook and held out his paws, “STOP!”. Cook looked at Cat with a lazy grin and Cat hollered at him, “why didn’t you stop?” Cook just continued with his grin and motioned Cat forward down the highway. At this point, Cat thought to himself that this Cook had not uttered a single syllable since he met him….Cook wasn’t able to talk – at this juncture, the Cook pulled out a small spiralbound and one of those miniature golf sized pencil, licking the lead and clutching that worthless little pencil in his mammoth paw, he wrote “I don’t speak cat”.
As they trudged further down the road, there was a small storefront with a “for lease” sign in the window. Looking thru the plate glass window, they could see a small kitchen that even had a legal ventilation hood. Kinda shabby, but so what? The food would speak for itself since neither the Cook or the Cat could.
Cook made the trip to the markets while Cat cleaned the joint up so they could start cooking. Upon Cooks return, just the way the big man carried himself, Cat could see his instincts on adopting this human may pay off. Cook unpacked all the groceries and produce and got to work. Cat, sitting on top of the chest freezer was amazed at Cooks knife skills. He had noted a bit earlier, that Cook had pulled out a tin that looked very familiar. The Cat had a brief flashback to his too few days as an entitled kitten when he would feast on canned cat food, all flavorful delights. After Cook got his pork shoulder prepped and smoking for the Kalua Pork, he turned his attention to the colorful tin on the prep table. When he looked up, he noticed Cat lazar focused on the tin and as Cook opened it, he saw Cat lift his almost non-existent nose and lick his pointy little chops with memories of the luscious liver flavored food from his youth – I think it was the third life he thought and he could not resist. Cat crouched and pounced on the gelatinous loaf of meat and ripped off a bite much to Cooks chagrin. After a chew and swallow, Cat commented to Cook, that is the finest canned cat food I have had in my first five lives I’ve lived, what could it be? Cook held up the emptied Spam tin, and Cat knew they were on the right track for their Hawaiian walk-up window.
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