9. A burr under his saddle

He loves playing'Tigger was on a tear! Several times most every day he gets really hyper. He rips around the house and pounces on everything he can find. As he bounded by me one day I called out to him.

"Tigger! Slow down. What has gotten into you? You act like you have a burr under your saddle."

He skidded to a halt and spun around one way and then the other. He flipped and flopped and eventually noticed some hind legs and a tail (his) and attacked them.

"Tigger! What are you doing?" I asked.

What?"You said I had a burr under my saddle. I am looking for my saddle so I can get the burr out from under it. I can't find it, will you help me?" he said.

"I said you 'looked' like you had a burr under your saddle. You don't actually have a saddle or a burr. It is all a figure of speech. A burr under the saddle of a horse makes him irritable and you look irritable, that's all."

"I would be irritable if someone put a burr under my saddle... by the way, what's a saddle... what's a burr?"

By now he was considerably calmed down and I lifted him onto my lap. "A saddle is the seat they put on horses for people to sit on and a burr under a saddle must really hurt. A burr is a small sharp thing. I would be irritable too if I had a burr under a saddle on my back."

I could tell that just by getting him to stop and get engaged in conversation had gotten him calmed down. I stroked his head and back and rubbed him under his chin. He loves that. He goes into the strangest positions to get me to stroke under his chin and almost seems to go into a trance. I leaned over and kissed him on his nose. He loves that too... but not when he's on a tear.

It was late in the day and getting almost dark. All of a sudden some movement in the back yard caught his sharp eye and he bounded out of my lap and ran to the screen. I followed just walking since for me to try to match his athletic and acrobatic jump and dash to the screen would have been disastrous.

Deer in yardTo my surprise a deer was at the salt block. She is getting her winter coat and is much darker than last time I saw her. She grazed and occasionally went to the salt block and licked it. She wandered across the yard until she was a little closer to us.

All of a sudden a cat (one of the many feral cats in the neighborhood) came out of the woods and started stalking her! I couldn't believe it, the cat was so little and the deer so big. However, the cat bothered the deer who stamped her front legs and snorted at it. The cat retreated but didn't go away.

"Do you see that cat?" Tigger asked.

"I sure do. It is brave to stalk that deer but did you notice it backed off when the deer stamped and snorted?"

"I wouldn't have backed off. I am much braver than that cat." he said with a smug self assurance born of being in the house and not having to prove his bravery.

The deer wandered back towards the salt block and the cat followed at a safe distance. Finally the deer turned and made a move towards the cat. The cat turned disappeared into the woods. I didn't see it again before the deer finally went into the woods as it got really dark.

"Wow! That was really neat wasn't it?" I asked him.

"Yeah... but I wouldn't have run away." he said, obviously unimpressed with the other cat.
"What would you have done?"

Attack"I would have attacked the deer. I am a ferocious attacker you know." he said as he thrust out his chest and sat tall and regal. Then he demonstrated his abilities on his little stuffed bear.

I couldn't help but admire him. He is a very good looking cat and just then he looked like he really might have attacked a deer at least 100 times his size. I wouldn't put it past him.

"Well... .what would you have done with her if you got her. She is way too big for you to eat you know."

"Well... we do have a freezer...."

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