Carlton was sunning himself and thinking. Sometimes when he did this people thought he was just a sleepy lazy cat, but they had no idea what was going in that gigantic feline brain. This particular day he was musing on the Hoffman’s security system which had just been installed in their home. Carlton and his mate Scorpio also lived there; in fact they had free rein, going in and out as they pleased. Of course they had to get somebody’s attention to get the door opened, but as both cats were accomplished and quite loud meowers this was not an issue. The deck on the back of the house where Carlton was lying had a nice southern orientation and the sun bathed Carlton as he lay there, his resting and thinking interrupted occasionally by sporadic licking, as he was a fastidiously clean cat. The home security system had intrigued Carlton and he just could not figure out why the Hoffmans had gone to all the trouble and expense for something they didn’t need. He knew all the critters in the neighborhood and for as long as he had been at the Hoffman house, a good three years since Mrs. Hoffman had picked him out at the Orange County Animal Shelter, he had never heard of a break in. But then, as it happened so many times, the thought came to him like a bolt from the blue—–“It is obvious that they are afraid that someone might break in and steal Scorpio and me”, he meowed out loud, and was so proud of himself for figuring out the conundrum that he took off, roaring around the side porch, and climbed fifteen feet up the Japanese Maple tree in just a few bounds. He sat up in the tree for a while, feeling so grateful that the Hoffmans would spend so much money to forestall nefarious catnappers. Then he went back to his place on the deck, this time just to rest, having done enough thinking for one day. But the curse of a brilliant mind is that it requires frequent use, so it was only a few minutes before Carlton got back to pondering something else. The two cats had gotten a bit bored lately; it had been a fun packed summer what with several parties being held at the Hoffman house. All of the Hoffmans’ friends had cats, and Carlton and Scorpio were buddies with all of them, so it was only natural that the cats came along. So while the humans did whatever it is that humans do, the cats would hunt moles, garnering them in a small pen, and then play their favorite game—“mole tossing”. “Mole tossing” consisted of tossing a mole across a low net the cats had erected in the back yard; they chose up teams and swatted the little critters back and forth across the low net. It was kind of like a feline version of volleyball; however, spiking was strictly prohibited. “We may be natural killers, but no one can say we are cruel”, Carlton had told his assembled friends as he tossed another mole across the net. And Carlton was right; he even turned the moles loose as soon as the game was over.
But the frivolity was only a memory now, and sometimes cats need excitement, so Carlton started thinking about how to shake things up. In the recesses of his cavernous brain his memory dredged up a particular episode which had made an indelible impression on his nimble mind. It involved a certain South “American lizard that had escaped from a neighbor’s terrarium. Carlton had espied the reptile in his back yard sunning itself on the deck and had immediately pounced, flipping the yellow and orange critter around, carrying it around in his mouth and generally treating it like he would a mole or vole. Then as most cats do, he ignored it for a while, waiting for the terrified lizard to make a break for it so that he could pounce once again. But as he was waiting he started feeling light heated, and he noticed that his vision was impaired; it was like things were fuzzy around the edges, and then he started seeing colors. Even stranger, when Scorpio, who was watching from a short distance away, flitted her tail around it looked like a stop action camera, with long trails following her tail along. Carlton was in a state of confusion, found it difficult to discern anything, and finally gave up trying to think and just watched the colorful show. In addition he found that he was having little surges of energy down his legs and into his paws, and when he moved his paws it had the trails just like Scorpio’s tail. But the most unusual aspect of this strange feeling was when he groomed himself; it felt like his tongue was giving his skin and fur some kind of deep massage. It was not unpleasant, just curious. After about an hour all of the sensations subsided, leaving Carlton in a very confused state as to what had happened. Fortunately the Hoffmans had been away so he and Scorpio had gone into Mrs. Hoffman’s office to do a little investigation on her computer. Carlton was able to turn the computer on with his nose, but punching on keys was a whole other issue, cat’s paws not being well suited for that action. After a while Scorpio had found a pencil and holding it between her front paws she was able to press the keys. First they googled “lizards of South America”, which brought up a bunch of pictures of colorful critters. Carlton and Scorpio scanned the pictures until Carlton shouted “there it is”, pointing his outstretched paw at a yellow lizard that looked exactly like the one he had encountered. “The Yellow Tanager Lizard, named after the Yellow Tanager Bird because of the similar color, inhabits the rain forests of South America. For centuries the Indians have utilized these lizards in their religious rites, licking the belly of the reptile, which induces a variety of hallucinations and other unusual feelings in the body”, Carlton read breathlessly. He looked at Scorpio and said “so that was what was going on “.
That encounter had scared Carlton quite a bit, and he had vowed to never repeat the experience, feeling that it had been way more intense than he cared for. But presently he did feel a hankering for some outside stimulation; both he and Scorpio had experienced the mild high from catnip, but that had sort of become old hat. But he remembered an acquaintance of his who might be of help and Carlton took off up the street to the Velvet Cloak Hotel, a fashionable establishment that also had a nice restaurant and bar on the bottom floor. He knew where he could find who he was looking for and sure enough, after going back behind the hotel to where they kept the large garbage cans and sitting and watching for a few minutes, Rocco the raccoon emerged from one of the cans carrying a half eaten corn dog in his mouth. When Rocco saw Carlton he dropped the corn dog and they shook paws. “How you been Rocco”, Carlton said, sitting down and curling his striped tail around his body. Rocco placed the corn dog in a plastic bag he had carried with him, the corn dog joining half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and the remains of a banana. Rocco loved to forage, although he was a domesticated animal, having been captured as a youngster by Gary Fetzer, a drug dealer who lived in the Velvet Cloak. The location was a perfect one for the both of them; Gary was close to the college and their drug craving students and Rocco had lots of garbage cans to explore. “Just fine”, said Rocco, running his paws through the fur on his head. Rocco’s paws were more like fingers, slender and very tactile and he could do about anything a human could do with their hands.
“Rocco, I wonder if you could get some pot for me, maybe about two joints; now I don’t want any spiked with any drugs or anything like that”, said Carlton. Rocco sat up on his haunches and wiped his whiskers. “Well Gary has got some stuff from Hawaii they call “Maui Wowie”, said Rocco, grinning at Carlton, “and it is purty good”. “Sounds like it could become “Meowie Wowie”, laughed Carlton, and Rocco rolled around on the ground, giggling at the funny cat. “Get that for me and I will get you access to the Hoffmans’ garbage cans; everybody needs a change of pace once in a while, right?”, the cat said, and Rocco quickly agreed to the deal. Carlton had heard about other cats getting weed from Rocco; Rocco pilfered the pot from his master Gary along with some Bugle rolling papers and rolled up the joints himself, his nimble paw/fingers doing the trick. Carlton called Rocco’s front appendages “pawngers”, which Rocco thought very clever. Rocco told Carlton he would bring them over when it got dark that night.
By the time Carlton got back to the Hoffman house the late afternoon sun was coming in nicely from the west so he positioned himself on the glider on the side porch, and was immediately joined by Scorpio who had been hunting in the back yard. Carlton told Scorpio all about what had happened with Rocco and how Rocco was going to bring the weed over later that night. Scorpio kind of screwed her face up, like she always did if she were worried about something, when Carlton told her about the deal he had made with Rocco. “I don’t know about all that garbage can stuff, I’m not sure if that is real honest, I mean making that agreement without the Hoffmans’ knowledge. It is almost like stealing”, she meowed. Carlton laughed and looked at her, arching his back and switching his tail back and forth rapidly. Carlton always did this when he was in a teasing mood, and usually it had something to do with Scorpio. “Good gosh”, he purred, “it is trash Scorpio, Rocco will be doing the Hoffmans a favor, and just think of how he will be helping those poor garbage men. He will be lightening their load considerably, and you know how horribly underpaid they are. Don’t you read the paper?”. Scorpio smiled as she realized that her mate was sort of joking and sort of making a little sense, which he was quite skilled at doing on a regular basis.
They lazed about on the glider until about seven when they were called in for supper, and after eating spent a good half hour preening themselves on the deck. As they were finishing their cleaning Rocco came around the corner, grinning slyly as he sauntered up to them. Rocco held out the two joints, masterfully rolled in his “pawngers” and said “now show me these trash cans”. The three of them walked to the right of the back yard behind the white six foot tall privacy fence to where the plastic forty gallon city issued garbage can stood. “Now you know the blue one is the re-cycle, and the green one is the garbage can. Don’t think you will find much in the re-cycle but you are welcome to it. You will notice, but I am sure you were already well aware, that the units are plastic with large lids, which makes for a pretty much soundless situation—-no metal garbage cans and lids clanging around.” Rocco laughed and said “not my first rodeo kiddo; I will be back later tonight to sample the wares and fares .” Carlton and Scorpio waved their paws goodbye as Rocco rounded the corner and headed back to the Velvet Cloak for a little rest before his night of foraging in his new terrain. With great difficulty Carlton was able to fold the joints up in a scrap piece of aluminum foil he had picked up in the kitchen while they were having supper and the two headed for their little nest in the ivy, having decided to hold off on the festivities until the next day. “Maybe we can have one of those ‘pot parties’ like in the sixties”, Carlton said, and the two of them laughed heartily as they settled in for the night.
A beautiful day dawned the next morning and Carlton and Scorpio went about their normal habits: eating, lounging, sunning, hunting, etc. About ten o’ clock Carlton called Scorpio over to where he was on the glider; Scorpio went over quickly, for she knew that something was up because Carlton had that look on his face—that thinking look that she knew so well. When she got there he said “I have an idea and I think you will like it”. Scorpio’s tail started swirling around, like it did every time she got excited. Carlton continued. “I was not joking when I said something about an old fashioned sixties pot party, and that is exactly what we are going to do”, he said, grinning his sly grin. “Spill it Maestro”, Scorpio meowed, her tail continuing its swirling, and even increasing in intensity. “Well, I am going to put out the word for all the neighborhood cats to come over at dusk; two joints is not a lot of marijuana for a bunch of adults, but for a bunch of felines it is a ton. Especially since it is the strong stuff—“Meowie Wowie”, exclaimed Carlton, laughing at his coined term. Scorpio became very excited, rolling on the concrete porch and laughing with delight. Carlton looked at his mate and fully realized that his idea was going to be a tremendous hit. Then he explained further.
“You know our feline lung capacity is very small compared to humans, and so we will get stoned a lot quicker and on a lot less smoke”, Carlton said. Scorpio nodded agreeably, knowing that Carlton had picked up a lot of medical knowledge from Sinatra, the large Maine Coon of a retired nurse who lived in the hood. “So here is the plan; put out the word to all the neighborhood cats –you are in charge of this -and I will sit around the rest of the day thinking of fun things to do once we smoke the evil weed”, Carlton said, grinning widely as Scorpio took off around the Hoffman house, obviously feeling that she was on a mission.
Scorpio was gone all day long telling all of their friends about the party; there were a good many cats in the neighborhood but they had friends downtown and also in Five Points, a fashionable area about a mile away with many beautiful homes, some from the 1920s. A Five Points address usually meant that there was a Carolina Country Club membership in the family; some of the cats from there tended to be a bit snooty, but overall they were pretty okay. Carlton wondered how they those characters would react to the pot; in fact, being able to watch all the different reactions was the main reason he thought of the party. Carlton was a voyeur at heart, but a good hearted one.
What Carlton did the rest of the day while Scorpio was busily traversing the varied environs of Raleigh was what he always did—sunning, hunting, eating, and a tiny smidgen of actual thinking of what the night would be like. Carlton tended to prefer to act on impulse, leaving the course of events to be decided more on an off the cuff basis. It had worked well for him over the years; plus, he had felt like having a little alone time. Carlton did not feel guilty one lick about this bit of minor deception, having long ago realized that the superior mind needed a bit of solitary time occasionally. “Use it or lose it”, he said out loud to himself as he settled down for his third nap of the afternoon.
Scorpio was getting close to the Hoffman house; it was almost five o’clock and she was getting a bit hungry. Her endeavor had gone very well, and she was feeling pretty proud of herself. She had taken shortcuts to the Five Points neighborhood, cutting down through creeks and hollows that only skilled critters would know about; it saved quite a bit of time. On Cowper Drive she had seen Jake, a large Persian and a favorite friend of Carlton’s. Jake got real excited when Scorpio told him about the party and also confessed that he had never tried weed. He also asked if his cousin from California could attend. “Steve is a big pot head and I am sure that he would love to come. He will be in this afternoon and I am sure he will be ready to party after spending several hours in a cold holding compartment in the storage area of an airplane”, Jake said. Scorpio assured Jake that his cousin could come, and anyone else that he wanted to invite. After that she had hung around the bus stop on Glenwood Avenue and managed to sneak on the bus downtown. Scorpio always got a kick out of riding the bus because most of the time she could do it without being noticed. She also got a charge out of the fact that the bus was called the CAT bus. She remembered that when she had first seen the name emblazoned on the side of the bus she had thought that it was an advertisement for the Caterpillar Equipment Company, manufacturers of bulldozers and motor graders and such. She had laughed at herself when Carlton had explained that it was an acronym for “Capital Area Transit”. When she had been heading home coming down Hillsborough Street she had stopped at The Velvet Cloak and walked up the stairs to the room where Rocco and his master lived; the door was cracked open and a lot of smoke was pouring out into the hallway. She caught Rocco’s eye and he came out into the hall, where Scorpio invited him to the pot party. “Spot on, guvna”, said Rocco, batting his glassy eyes. Rocco had invited her in, but Scorpio figgered that she better get on home; additionally she did not recognize any of the guys in the room, and decided not to press her luck—“one could not assume that everyone was a cat lover, could one?”, Scorpio thought to herself.
When she got home Scorpio went into the back yard where she found her mate collecting moles and putting them in the little pen he had fashioned. “Reckon we will have a little mole tossing tonight”, he said, as Scorpio sat down and started preening herself, cleaning the detritus of the “mean streets of Raleigh” from her feline body. As Scorpio sat licking herself Carlton was going on about how it sounded like they would have a good crowd, Scorpio having interjected into the conversation about all the places she had been and all the cats she had contacted. “And I stopped by the Velvet Cloak and invited Rocco”, Scorpio purred, “I hope that was ok”. Carlton laughed out loud and rolled on the ground. “Of course our benefactor should be here”, he said. (Author’s note: It is not widely known that cats can laugh, but they indeed can. It is not a standard kind of laugh, and is rather difficult to describe—think of the noise a cat makes when it is trying to meow and chew Fancy Feast at the same time.)
It was getting a bit late, nearly six, so the two cats had supper and relaxed on the deck. Scorpio, at Carlton’s suggestion, had told everyone to arrive around seven. By that time it would be good and dark, plus Carlton had overheard the Hoffmans say that they were going out for the evening. Carlton had the two joints beside him; they were still in the foil that he had wrapped them in. Carlton had been tempted to try out a little but after reflecting on that prospect shelved it. A couple of impediments had immediately come to mind: first, he couldn’t imagine how he could hold the joint between his paws, and second, he didn’t have any way to light it. He thought very briefly of the pilot light on the gas water heater in the basement of the house, but the graspability issue was still there. Carlton figgered that Rocco would probably have a solution, and he was so very right.
Soon the Hoffmans departed, and shortly thereafter cats started to filter into the back yard from every direction. The first arrivals were Jake, the big Persian, and his cousin Steve from California, a large Calico cat. Steve kept stretching, an inordinate amount even for a cat, as Jake explained to Carlton about how he had been cooped up in the cold airplane compartment in a cat carrier. “So how are things in California?”, Carlton asked Steve when he finally stopped his limbering up antics. “Groovy man”, purred Steve, “out of sight, dude”. Carlton chuckled to himself; he had heard this kind of talk before having read a couple of excerpts from a Jack Kerouac story and thought that it would fit in perfectly with the sixties pot party theme. “I hear you got a coupla joints”, said Steve the Calico, looking at the host. “I much prefer the psychedelics like mescaline and LSD, but a little weed might be a good change of pace.” This prompted Carlton to relate the story about the Yellow Tanager Lizard and his own “psychedelic” experience. “Wow, man, that is far out”, shouted Steve, “where is this reptile”. When Carlton told Steve he had lost touch with the lizard Steve was a little disappointed but recovered quickly when Carlton produced the aluminum foil laden joints. Carlton quickly found out that it is a lot easier to enclose joints with foil than it is to remove the covering, but after a lot of effort he was able to extract the pot. By that time the back yard was getting pretty full and everybody was excited and ready for the party. Just as Carlton was about to admit to everyone that he had not figured out how to hold the pot to smoke it Rocco rolled in and saved the day. Carlton quickly took Rocco aside and explained the dilemma; Rocco laughed loudly and said “no sweat bro”. (Author’s note: raccoons are quite a bit more adept at laughing—think a five year old female child.)
Rocco looked around in the back yard until he found a couple of reeds that had been in a flower arrangement that Mrs. Hoffman had thrown out into the ivy. The reeds were about a quarter inch in diameter and were hollow with a thin wall. Rocco’s eyes lit up when he saw them; he grinned and looked at Carlton. “Watch this, guvnah”, he said. Carlton watched as Rocco took each reed and using his sharp claws sliced about a half inch on opposite sides of each of the reeds. Then he used one of his sharp claws and sliced off the bottom of the reeds at an angle. When he had finished the reeds were about nine inches tall; then Rocco went over into the rear of the yard out of sight of the back windows and pushed the reeds into the soft ground to where there was about six inches remaining above the terrain. “Now give me those joints”, he said to Carlton. Rocco took the proffered joints and deftly prying the top of the slit reeds apart placed a joint in each of the reeds. The pot fit tightly in the tops of the reeds and it produced a perfect pot holder, just far enough above the ground so that a cat could walk right up to it and take a puff. Carlton was amazed at the dexterity and creativity of Rocco, and he was most grateful for all that he had done, but as Rocco was looking at his handiwork Carlton walked up to him sheepishly and said “Oh, there was one other thing that I have a problem with Rocco; I don’t have any way to light the pot”. Rocco let out a big guffaw and reached into a little fanny pack he always carried and produced a Zippo lighter. “Just filled it up this morning”, he said. At this moment a giant cacophony of cat laughter and high spirited meows rang out, for all of the cats had gathered around to watch Rocco while he was working on the pot holders. After the din subsided Scorpio shouted “Three cheers for Rocco”, and all the cats gave three robust cheers. (Author’s note: I am not even going to try to describe what a cheering cat sounds like).
Steve, the California cat, meowed loudly “Well, we gonna fish or cut bait”, and with that Rocco quickly flicked his Zippo and lit both the joints. When Rocco motioned for Carlton to take the first puff Carlton shook his head, causing his long white whiskers to jump around wildly and said “No, after you Maestro”. So Rocco went to each joint and lit it, puffing on it to get it started good, then held his breath a good ten seconds until his dark eyes started to bulge a little bit. “That’s how ya do it kids”, said Rocco, “have at it”. The cats quickly lined up, the two queues winding around the maple tree and ending up almost at the deck. None of the cats, with the exception of Steve the California cat, had ever smoked marijuana before, so they were a bit tentative about the whole process, but after Steve got to the front,(he had broken in line), he took a huge hit, held it for about fifteen seconds, and then shouted, “See, cats, nothin’ to it”. That seemed to loosen everybody up and before you could say “stoned out cats” they were all puffing like pros. Carlton had been right about the lung capacity of cats compared to humans and after everybody had been to the puffing posts at least twice the joints had burned down only halfway. Carlton and Scorpio had taken their turns just like everybody else and they were trying to figger if they were feeling any differently. Scorpio thought she could feel something like a light catnip high but Carlton was unable to detect any difference either in his thought process or in how his body felt. But there were a few unusual things going on in the rest of the group. Steve the California Calico was laughing loudly and proclaiming that the pot was “purty good, but you should have done some of that window pane LSD I had the other week. There were musical notes coming out of the speakers two feet high”. Some of the cats were listening to him while others ignored him and seemed to be off in their own little worlds. Rocco, an experienced smoker, was just sitting back and observing and occasionally emitting a little giggle and Jake had taken a very intense interest in the interior of the blossom of an abelia hedge near the back of the yard. Carlton and Scorpio watched as two cats were hanging around the mole pen. They had their paws around each other’s shoulders and appeared to be sniffling or crying. Carlton and Scorpio were very curious, as always was their wont, so they walked over to where the two cats were. They could hear them talking; “those poor little things never harmed anybody”, one of them was saying. “I know”, whined the other one, “and what about their families, who would take care of them if the parent got injured in the mole tossing game”. Carlton and Scorpio were listening intently and watched as the two cats released all the moles from the pen. Carlton had spent a lot of time corraling the critters but all he could do as he watched the release of the moles was laugh, and before he knew it he was rolling around on the grass with Scorpio, both of them laughing maniacally.
As they meandered around the back yard “cat watching” they came upon Hugo, an alley cat of no particular distinction whom someone had invited, and stopped to watch him. They noticed that he had hit the pot lines a bunch; the sweet smoke seemed to be doing a number on him. Hugo had this expansive grin tattooed on his face and was going through the crowd shaking paws and glad handing everybody. “Bet he would kiss a baby kitten if there were one around”, chuckled Carlton, and Scorpio nodded in agreement. “Maybe he is gearing up to run for mayor”, offered Scorpio, and was so taken with her comment that she leaped into the air, ending her acrobatics with her familiar grass rolling. Carlton joined her in the rolling, but they were interrupted in their antics by a loud voice coming from the deck. “Ladies and gentlemen, now for the first time in America, I give you the Beat-ulls”, caroled Hugo. Hugo had mounted the deck and was using it as a stage; he was standing on his hind paws and had his fore paws clenched around his chest and was all bent over and was kind of scowling.
“He’s doing his Ed Sullivan impersonation”, said Liz, an attractive orange tabby who was standing nearby. “He always do this when he gets stoned”, she added, laughing as Hugo continued. Presently the feline impressionist was saying “and now everyone, please welcome little Copo Gigio”, and as he said this he produced one of the moles that had been released, one of the slower ones that had still been less than scurrying about, and started doing a little whiney voice like “oh, meester Sullivan, it is so nice to be here tonight” and so on. Hugo’s routine was interrupted by the two mole liberators, who to the joyous shouts of the crowd ushered Hugo off the stage and re-liberated the mole; however, it all ended well, Hugo coming back on for a second and ending with “we had a really good shew tonight”. The stoned cats gave a great cheer and Hugo exited, but it seemed that the “shew” was only beginning. Carlton whispered something into Scorpio’s ear which caused her to yelp with joy. “So you think I should?”, he asked out loud. “For sure”, she shouted, as Carlton made his way to the stage.
The cats quieted as Carlton stepped onto the deck. “Ladies and gentlemen, I want to thank all of you for coming to our sixties pot party and I am in hopes that you have all had a great time.” He was rewarded by muffled applause, (paws not making a lot of noise when clapped together), and lots of catcalls and caterwauling. After things settled down a bit Carlton continued. “I would like to bring our little party to an end with a song, my all time favorite, ‘Chances Are’, by my all time fave singer, Mr. Johnny Mathis. And with that Carlton launched into the song: “Chances are, if I wear a silly grin, the moment you walk in the room, chances are you think that I’m in love with you”, Carlton caroled. He continued through the song to the ending, where he hit the high note: “chances are your chances are, awwwfullly goooood, the chances are your chances are, awwffulllly good”. Carlton hit the high note perfectly, which he always did, and the cool stoned cats went crazy. They stormed the deck and picked Carlton up and paraded him around the yard several times, shouting and cheering. Carlton was in the moment, holding his fore paws high in the air and blowing kisses to the crowd, his adoring mate looking on.
After the song and all the frivolity Carlton and Scorpio sat down for a moment to survey the back yard; there were cats passed on the grass, cats staggering around aimlessly, and even one gray tabby napping in the crook of the maple tree about ten feet off the ground. “Guess it is about time to break this thing up”, said Carlton a bit wistfully. He was toying with the idea of re-mounting the stage for an encore of “Chances Are” but quickly dismissed the thought, realizing upon reflection that everyone did not love Johnny Mathis as much as he did. So they went around the yard, waking up cats to get them on their way. As they made their way around the back yard many of the cats figgered out what was up and started to depart, stopping by to tell Carlton and Scorpio what a “blast” the party had been. Even the California Calico Cat came by and thanked them, suggesting that the next party should feature some “good ol’ window pane LSD”. Carlton told him that he would surely let him know when they were going to do that, giving Scorpio a slight roll of the eyes. “Don’t get me wrong now”, the California cat call out as he departed, “that was some purty good dope you all had—not bad for amateurs”. This brought another eye roll from Carlton as the Calico took his leave. “Sure is full of himself”, ain’t he”, offered Scorpio. “No doubt about it”, said Carlton, “or certainly full of something”. Scorpio smiled at this comment as they watched the last of the cats leave, Carlton climbing up the maple tree to roust the grey tabby.
The two cats sat quietly on the deck. After a while Scorpio looked at Carlton and purred “would you change anything about the party if you had it to do over?” Carlton thought for a minute and got his mischievous smile and said “maybe one thing”, and with that stood up on his hind paws, and holding a pine cone in his front paws like a microphone launched into song. “Chances are, if I wear a silly grin, the moment you walk in the room”…………, as Scorpio rolled in the grass, giggling and exulting in adoration of her man.