… a post about the evening I spent in the company of the venerable author Donna Tartt. Last week she was over in London to promote her latest novel, The Goldfinch, which is only her third – any of you who know anything about her will know that she writes, on average, one book every forty years or something.
What you might not know is that when I went to meet my agent for the first time, before she signed me, she’d read an early draft of The Perfect Suicide and declared that it reminded her a little of blockbuster The Secret History. Which kind of blew my mind (also, with hindsight was superbly generous and possibly a little bit hyperbolic – I suspect the only similarity really was the university setting and general weirdness).
So when my friend Susie suggested we go along to a reading Donna Tartt was giving with Waterstones, I was thrilled and excited. It also coincided nicely with my mum’s birthday – and her request for a copy of The Goldfinch as part of the present. Great, I thought. I can even get it signed for her!
But then this happened…
I came home after a morning meeting to find Percy had a massive great hole in his little paw. Cue emergency vets appointment, which meant my evening gawping at Donna Tartt was off.
By the time I got back from the vets – who declared that Percy’s injury was, somewhat incredibly, a cat bite* – it was too late to make it into town. So instead I sulked in front of the TV, glaring at the injured party, while reading tweets from people like India Knight going on about how great it was.
Percy, clearly sensing my passive aggressive irritation, spent the evening looking cute and sad in equal measure.
So, instead this post is about a daft ginger cat. And his long-running feud with Beryl the Bold Tabby next door. On this occasion it was very much Beryl – 1, Percy – nil.
Depending on whether or not you’re a cat-lover, you’ll be pleased to hear he’s since recovered well.
*on a side note, I have since learnt that cat bites are really dangerous to humans. Who knew? Cats’ mouths are full of bacteria, and because of the shape of their sharp and pointy teeth, they puncture the skin with a small hole and fill it with bacteria when they bite you. After which, the hole quickly heals over, trapping all the nasty things inside, meaning that if you’re bitten by a cat, you’ve got a 50% chance of it getting infected. So if your cat ever bites you hard – go to the doctor’s and get antibiotics.