Finney Lives to be Tormented Another Day

All good news from the vet, Finney’s blood work is perfect. The vet attributes the weight loss to mostly Bleeck, and a little to my meager efforts to feed him a tad less.

Thank God. Finney does seem happier lately. He’s more active, more affectionate. The weight loss and increased activity have been good for him and he’s probably feeling a lot less discomfort. So even though he barely tolerates the kitten, the little guy has been good for him overall. It’s that parable I love, in cat terms. Here is the Northern Exposure version:

My uncle once told me about a warrior who had a fine stallion. Everybody said how lucky he was to have such a horse.

Maybe, he said.

One day the stallion ran off. The people said the warrior was unlucky.

Maybe, he said.

The next day, the stallion returned, leading a string of fine ponies. The people said it was very lucky.

Maybe, the warrior said.

Later, the warrior’s son was thrown from one of the ponies and broke his leg. The people said it was unlucky.

Maybe, the warrior said.

The next week, the chief led a war party against another tribe. Many young men were killed. But, because of his broken leg, the warrior’s son was left behind, and so was spared.

I’m glad that the fact that Finney is doing so well might all be due to that pain-in-the-ass little guy, the one who chases him from room to room until Finney finally turns around, claws out, looking for all the world like he’s thinking, “For the love of God, take a nap or something.”

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

11 thoughts on “Finney Lives to be Tormented Another Day

  1. YAY! Great news about Finney! And I loved your analogy courtesy of Northern Exposure…that was one of my favorite shows (I have several seasons on DVDs…maybe it’s time to re-watch them on this gloomy and cool day).

  2. Good news for Finney! And for his tormentor, who shall continue to chase his beloved.

  3. Great news. My dog Jimmy is peeing blood right now but is showing no symptoms of discomfort, loss of appetite, nothing. The vet can’t figure it out, so frustrating!
    (You may already know this, but the horse story is a popular Buddhist tale.)

  4. I do know that, but I only learned that a couple of years ago. For years I just thought of it as a Northern Exposure thing.

    That is very frustrating about Jimmy, and kinda scary. I don’t even know what to suggest, the vet has probably already thought of anything I’ve thought of. Is there a specialist you can take him to?

    And tank you Mavis and Lisa. I’m in a very good mood today thanks to this news.

  5. Hi Stacy,
    I remember (was it Marilyn?) explaining this to Chris as they gazed, if I’m not mistaken, at some totem poles. I loved that show. You know, Janine Turner, who played Maggie, is a native Texas and now has her own conservative talk show on radio. She and her daughter lecture on the Constitution at various schools.

    This is an interesting pose that Finney strikes for the camera.

    Actually it is almost identical to the picture on Black Cat Fireworks. In our part of the world outside the cities, people still buy fireworks and shoot them off. Black Cat fireworks have had a Finney-like picture for as long as I have been alive.

    In addition there used to be a black shoe polish that had a picture in the same pose as Finney, presumably to suggest that their black shoe polish was as black as a midnight cat.

    So it’s possible that the popularity of Finney’s pose is because it has become an archetype in American history.

    (I vaguely wondered how Finney would have looked if he had had a martini glass in the extended paw…)

  6. It was Marilyn! I loved Marilyn. And that is interesting about Janine Turner, now lecturing on the Constitution.

  7. Good for Finney! And why did they cancel “Northern Exposure?” Or for that matter, why cancel “Men in Trees?” Sigh.

  8. Hi Cara,
    if I remember correctly, 3 or 4 of the original writers of Northern Exposure decided they had said about everything they could say and left the show. That was responsible for the guy who played Fleischman to state that he was leaving.

    The show struggled on for another year, but without those admirably intelligent writers, the show started to go downhill. It’s a shame; if the gifted writers had remained, I think there was a lot the show could have down with the characters.

    Hi Stacy,
    that’s right, it was Marilyn! Now I remember that she wasn’t talking to Chris. She was talking to Ed. It’s funny — I’ve seen some of the actors from Northern Exposure pop on on other shows, but others I’ve never seen again. I think the guy who played Holling had a pretty big stage career.

  9. Holling had a great singing voice. Yeah, the last year of the show was pretty bad, but the very last episode I remember made me cry.

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