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Dec 20, 2019

There are only eight days to go until Christmas including today, so people are rushing around trying to get the last few things organized. Most people here who celebrate Christmas, have their tree up and decorated, perhaps a few lights decorating their house outside, and most of the presents bought and wrapped. This year I have been dragging my feet for some reason(1). I am usually a real enthusiast, and have the place looking festive and special. This year, however, I'm doing the minimum. And that is probably because I'm busy with work. Fair enough(2). My family can 'take up the slack'(3), and do what I don't manage to get done. Now, when it comes to presents, I was very tempted the other day to buy something that I know we absolutely don't need: another cat. It was a kitten to be specific. I had gone to the pet shop with my daughter to get our snake some frozen mice to eat. It's unfortunate, but true; after all, the snake has to eat something, right? And apparently mice is what they like. While we were in the shop, we saw a display of lots of cages of cats. They had been brought over from the Humane Society which takes care of unwanted animals. They bring these animals into the pet shop in order to encourage people to fall in love and buy them. Well, it's not hard to fall in love with a kitten, especially when it keeps staring at you as if to say, "You are the one, the one who needs to take me home!" Of course, you are allowed to take them out of the cages and pet them. And the paperwork is right there ready to be signed after you make your payment of $50. It's all too easy. But, at the moment, that is not a good idea for us. We already have two dogs, a cat, and a snake. That's enough responsibility! While we were in the pet shop, the kittens were selling quickly. After all, they are easier to look after than dogs because they are so independent. You don't need to take them for a walk; they can just go out at night and hunt for mice, climb trees, and get up to all sorts of mischief. That is their exercise. And, if you happen to have a mice problem on your property, the cat will take care of it. All of that and a cuddly companion for just $50. How could I say "No"? With difficulty. And the salespeople really know how to make it worse. They immediately tell you the name of the cat: sparkle, fluffy, daisy, petal, or something really sweet. Then they tell you how loving and playful they are....The best thing to do is to run out of the shop as fast as you can before you fall in love. It's the only solution, I think. The Humane Society's selling tactic is a smart and efficient way to get these animals a home for Christmas, but it's torture for an animal lover who is already up to her ears in pets!

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