Friday, December 23, 2011

You can't gift-wrap a cat

On Thursday evening, the yarn lady started opening boxes and sorting things.  She made piles of stuff, muttered at them, looked for more things and muttered some more.  Clem was resting up from a game of yarnballs so she didn’t get up to investigate.  The yarn lady then undid the piles, lumped them all together on the sofa  (why did she put them there to begin with if she wasn’t going to leave them) and got out the long skinny tubes of paper she’d used for making the blue and silver stars for Hanukkah.  This one was gold, though.  She took one of the things from the pile on the sofa and proceeded to cut some paper off the big tube and wrapped it around the item, taping it in place.  Clem wasn’t sure why she was doing this – perhaps she didn’t want anyone to know what she’d bought?  Was this a way of hiding things from people, or perhaps it was just another type of decoration.  She thought this was the best possibility until the yarn lady took a bunch of them and just stuck them in a bag and put the bag in the closet.  It must be the hiding thing, although why she couldn’t have just put them in the bag in the closet to hide them was beyond Clem’s understanding. 

By now Clem was thoroughly awake and decided to investigate a little more closely.  The yarn lady changed to a roll of paper that was blue with pictures on it and grabbed a few small items from the sofa.  She unrolled the paper – this roll wasn’t so thick, and it crinkled very nicely when unrolled.  Clem wondered how it would feel to play with it, and jumped up on the table.  The yarn lady was cutting a smaller piece from the bigger piece, and once she’d separated the two Clem grabbed the end of the smaller piece closest to her.  “Mine,” she said.  The yarn lady explained that she needed the paper, and gently removed Clem from the table. 

No fair.  The yarn lady got all the cool stuff to play with.  Well, in all honesty, she let Clem play with almost everything.  Not the embroidery stuff, but yarn and her computer – well she didn’t know that Clem played with the computer, but still.  Clem jumped back up on the table and dug her claws into the pretty paper.  Oh, nice.  Her claws went though easily, leaving lovely little holes.  She tried the other corner – maybe it would taste good, so she chewed on it a bit.  It didn’t taste good, but it had an interesting texture.  The yarn lady growled at her and put her back on the floor.  “Clem I need to get this finished and I don’t require your help on this.”  She tossed a yarn ball into the kitchen.  Clem thought for half an instant and decided a thrown yarn ball was more fun than arguing with the yarn lady about pretty paper. 

For the next half hour or so the yarn lady alternated between throwing yarn balls and covering various shaped things with pretty paper.  Some of them were soft things, and Clem really wanted to try digging her claws into the paper on those, but the yarn lady carefully put them in a box after she finished each one.  Any time Clem looked like she was about to jump on the table, the yarn lady would find a yarn ball and throw it.  Clem knew she was being distracted, but hey, it was fun.Finally the yarn lady announced, “Done. Well at least for tonight.  I still need to decide what to do with the stuff from Dotsie.  Leave it in the boxes?  Open, sort and wrap?  I think I’ll leave it and we can sort it on Christmas.”   
She turned to Clem with a devilish smile on her face and announced,

“Now it’s time to wrap the cat.”  She had a medium size piece of the pretty gold paper in her hand and she reached down and attempted to cover Clem with it.   Clem squirmed out from under the paper and tried to grab it.  “No, no, no, Clem.  I need to wrap you – you’re my best Christmas present.”  She fit the paper around Clem’s middle, just below her head.  Clem squirmed and bit off a piece.  No wrapping cats.  She didn’t want to be taped up in a package and put in the closet.  That was not fun, although chewing on the paper wasn’t half bad.  When the yarn lady attempted one more time to secure the paper around Clem’s middle, Clem made a break for it and headed for the closet.  The yarn lady laughed and looked at the crumpled and bit piece of paper.  “Well, I won’t be using this one to wrap any presents – not if my little Clementine doesn’t want to be wrapped up in it and put under my tree.”

Clem watched her ball it up and throw away the paper.  She realized she’d just been given another bit of information about Christmas – the things she’d been wrapping were presents, in other words the gifts she was going to be giving to people.  She thought about the wrapped presents and scenes she’d seen on the television.  Commercials with big Christmas trees usually had lots of pretty boxes underneath – those were the presents.  The reason you wrapped them was because if you just stuck everything under the tree everyone could see them and know what they were.  It was kind of like a mystery.  Peep’s Mommy had brought presents for the yarn lady and Clem last weekend, but those had been in pretty bags with tissue paper.  Clem knew those were presents because the Mommy had announced it when she walked in the door.  So there must be different ways people could conceal the presents.  You could put them in pretty bags, or you could wrap them in pretty paper.  It made sense. 

Clem began to drift off to sleep, tired from all that yarnball chasing.  Her last thought before falling asleep was, “But then why weren’t there any presents that looked like they were for me?”

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