Sammie La Noir. That's the silliest name I've ever heard. Yes, I am a black cat. But no, I am not French.

Don't blame me for the title of this blog. The Human wrote it. The Human says we—she and I—are writing a blog about our time together. She claims to be interpreting my thoughts.

I will tell you something about interpretation. The one being interpreted is never consulted. And the one doing the interpretation always thinks he or she is correct.

THE HUMAN IS STAYING HERE while Father, Mother, and Son travel to the East. A few days into this, I am not thrilled. Among other things, the Human:

1) Does not allow me into Mother and Father's bedroom, where I nap in Father's chair. She is allergic. So why, I ask, did she travel all the way from Virginia to Arizona to take care of me?

2) Wears rubber gloves when she pets me. Allergies. It brings to mind my annual checkup at the veterinarian. I'm a lady, so I'll say no more in polite company.

3) Calls me "Sammie Kitty." Why? I know I'm a cat. Does she need to remind herself that I'm a cat? My name is Sammie or any name Mother, Father, and Son call me. The Human is not allowed to give me a nickname.

LIKE MOST FELINES, I observe a complex feeding ritual designed to please my finicky palate. Breakfast is milk served in a saucer of fine English china. (Father sneaks half-and-half into my milk when Mother's back is turned.)

For breakfast and dinner, in my own set of cat china, I receive canned food. One kind, I like. One, I like much less. When the less favored food is served I mewl in disappointment until the server gives me something better, such as tuna or a scrap of bacon. At noon I receive a treat to tide me over the long afternoon.

Evidently, Mother and Father have failed to convey this routine correctly to the Human. The Human does not rise at six, when breakfast should be served. I haven't seen a drop of half-and-half. When she serves the less desirable wet food and I voice a plaintive mewl, the Human ignores me. This is two weeks in purr-gatory.

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU ASK FOR. At last, breakfast is served on time, since the Human now rises early. But she leaves shortly thereafter, having given me almost no affection. On top of that, when she returns she smells of horses. More specifically, the emanation from the business end of a horse. Mmm hmm. That. A woman has entrusted the Human with (some) care and feeding of her Arabian horses, which thrills the Human to no end. Why? Who knows. I do not trust a thousand-pound animal that's afraid of a dry leaf in the wind. I have more cohones than that. And I do not have cohones.

It is easy for cats to get even with Humans, due to Humans' mistaken notion that cats are no smarter than dogs. This is so not true. Let me give you an example. As I mentioned, the Human resisted letting me into her bedroom and bathroom due to allergies. After more than a week of exposure to me without symptoms, she changed her mind. "I guess Sammie likes the steam from the shower," mused the Human, as I lay on the bathroom rug throughout her toilette. Nonsense. I was laughing at her. Silently, of course. Out loud would have been rude.

I GREW TO UNDERSTAND why Mother and Father thought the Human was suitable to take care of me. She groomed me regularly, which—as I am rather long-haired—was both necessary and pleasurable. Small pieces of chicken found their way into my dinnerware. We spent a goodly amount of time in the back yard watering the plants and stalking bugs. Best of all, I was reinstated into my rightful home: the bedroom. Unfortunately, the first night I shared her bed I was rudely wakened by a grunt-like moan. Concerned, I rested one paw gently on her cheek. Now she tells everyone how sweet and smart I am because I comforted her when she had a nightmare.

It was an unfortunate mistake, letting the Human know the softer side of me. How does she thank me? By telling everyone I'm a pussycat. This is why cats act offhand, distant, mysterious. The secret lives of felines should remain that—secret.

Ah, well. C'est la vie.