Mr. Hobbs – Part 3

If you had told me in January 2020 that Lewis Hamilton would win the British Grand Prix with a flat tire, Tom Brady would be wearing a pewter Bucs uniform in the playoffs and we’d have rescued over 1,300 cats and helped transport hundreds of others, I’d have told you to put the bong away and stop with the crazy talk. Now 365 days later with all that and then some in the rearview mirror, I’m ready to acknowledge the therapeutic value of your habit, reset our weekly litter delivery to 500 pounds and lay a few bucks on every wacky prediction you were willing to make.

For us, 2020 was mean-spirited in every sense, taking our livelihood, confidence and the best Van Halen, letting Ginger beat Mary Ann in the last longer bet and giving politicians and news hacks new ways to pit us against each other. The Governor strangled our industry but let tribes party on, our HVAC units crapped out when we needed them most and Jackpot shamed the genus by packing on an extra 5 lbs from cat food and needing a set of foam stairs to ferry his fat butt to the bed. It’s been a foul litterbox of a year and if an angry mob were chasing 2020 down the street, we’d grab a pitchfork and howl for blood.

And then there’s Mr. Hobbs. If you had told me a month ago when he checked in at 4.8 lbs with a wound on his back that couldn’t pass Facebook’s viewing standards, I’d have (and did) post some cheery narrative but felt in my heart we were at best a month of hospice. And here, after six weeks of unlimited food and insincere affirmations, the old fella tips the scales at 7.2 lbs (a 50% increase for those scoring at home), skips up the dog steps to the bed like he’s won Best Actor…AND THE WOUND ON HIS BACK HAS ALMOST CLOSED. He’ll never be new, but he’s vastly improved, wanders around the grounds with the unapologetic nonchalance of a naked septuagenarian in the gym locker room and may be Jackpot’s best shot at a diet in 2021. I don’t know what lousy things happened to Hobbs before he got to us, but if he can still greet each day with a purr, we all can. On to 2021!

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