The UNnatural habitat of the Bobcat, part I

The Bobcat sits in a dark room, only dimly illuminated by the glow of the computer screen. No light shines in through the windows, though it is daytime - the windows have long been covered over for privacy reasons. A copy of "Victims No Longer" sits open on a nightstand, next to some bottles of pills - antidepressants, sleeping pills, etc. A Miniature Schnauzer lies curled up on a pillow on the bed, eyes closed, breathing deeply, paws twitching as it dreams. The only sound is the drone of a ceiling fan and the hum of the computer.

Dark, cool, quiet...and alone. A Bobcat's habitat.

For, you see, this Bobcat is seldom to be found out in nature. It has marked its territory, and guards it well. By day, the Bobcat feasts hungrily, naps uneasily, but remains solitary always. By night, the Bobcat may be seen, licking away its wounds.

The story of this Bobcat goes back a long way. From the very beginning, it was a very quiet animal, unassuming, shy, but good-hearted and easy to be around. Always a little nervous about its skinny appearance, and even more than that, its uncircumsized penis. The Bobcat had seen only a couple of other male animals bared, but their penises looked different. The Bobcat was a little worried by this.

The Bobcat had other same-aged animals it would romp around with in its youth. These other animals lived nearby and were fun-loving. The Bobcat felt at ease with them. One of these animals, however, was becoming predatory.

One night, the predatory animal and the Bobcat were sharing the same habitat. The Bobcat noticed the predatory animal doing strange things: baring itself to the Bobcat, and inviting the Bobcat to bare itself back. What struck the Bobcat as the strangest part was the predatory animal's penis - it was different from the Bobcat's, but like others the Bobcat had seen - and it was erect. The Bobcat had never seen an erect penis, not even its own.

This poor Bobcat was very confused. Was this an activity the other animals participated in? The Bobcat admired the look of the predatory animal's circumsized penis, and thought it looked strangely powerful, but did not understand what other things a penis can be used for, outside of urination. No one had ever guided the Bobcat into these mysterious ways, but the predatory animal seemed to know what it was doing, so the meek little Bobcat laid down and let the predator do what it wanted.

Only once did the Bobcat question the activity, but the predatory animal gave indications that it might stop befriending the Bobcat. The Bobcat did not want to lose any friends, so it laid back down, and allowed the predator to lay down on top of it.

After that night, the Bobcat had the uneasy feeling that something bad had happened. It began to wonder if the activity had been wrong. But the Bobcat didn't like these thoughts, because it would mean that the Bobcat had been wrong to get involved in the activity. The Bobcat was very confused.

One late evening, the Bobcat found all the other animals gathered in a group. The Bobcat was mildly surprised that the other animals had not invited it, but was even more shocked when the group of animals decided that Bobcats could no longer belong with them. The Bobcat felt hurt, sad. What had it done to deserve being shunned so suddenly? The predatory animal was amongst the group, and watched as the Bobcat shuffled away: ears back, head down, tail between its legs.

A few days later, the Bobcat discovered that all the other animals it knew - at the wilderness where it learned its skills with the other animals - now growled whenever the Bobcat came near. This was new, and confused the poor Bobcat even more. But the Bobcat saw the predatory animal strutting around the other animals, and it began to guess the truth: the predatory animal was effectively making the Bobcat an outcast, as it had with the Bobcat's animal-friends.

The Bobcat began to dislike the wilderness it had to attend to learn skills. The other animals would avoid the Bobcat, or growl when it came near, or delight in pushing around and tormenting the poor Bobcat. The Bobcat's skills - that the wilderness valued so much - began not being as good as the other animals'. The Bobcat couldn't move to another habitat; it felt very trapped and sorry for itself.

One day the Bobcat went to a mountain where there was a cliff. The Bobcat stood at the edge of the cliff, looking down, for a long, long time. Tears ran down the Bobcat's muzzle. It felt all alone.

The Bobcat didn't like what was happening to itself; this new Bobcat wasn't playful or easygoing anymore. This new Bobcat was afraid for its safety, all the time. And it understood now that it was partly responsible for the predatory animal's activity that one night, because the Bobcat didn't defend itself. Therefore, the Bobcat understood why it was being punished, and didn't blame the other animals for not wanting anything to do with it. After all, what was there to like in a skinny, shy, quiet, scared, and very, very lonely little Bobcat?

The Bobcat continued to look over the cliff.

You don't have to be perfect to be wonderful.