By Esprit de L’Escalier
Dedicated to: Ms. Dana Bernbach
Puzon jumped on the bed, fell down on his side and gave a short order: MEW!
Which means to any normal cat as well as any human: Pet me!
But Prince Mishkin stood motionless in the middle of the room. Drowning deeply in his thoughts he did not hear nor see Puzon at all. His mind was with Nastasia Philippovna…
Puzon, unpleasantly surprised, raised his head and gazed expressively on Mishkin.
“What kind of stupid man is my tenant! In the beginning he called me James Bond,
then Fleaship Potyomkin, and at last chose my real name- Puzon. It sounds proud! For French it maybe is pronounced as Fuzon, I don’t know what it means…
But my Mishkin-Catkin! What happened to him? Did he become deaf?”
MEW! – He delivered this quick order a second time.
Then thought: “Well, if he did not hear my first command, now he will!”
But tenant Mishkin gave no response. He stood like a statue looking at outer space, where were no Puzon or petting Puzon existed. Only she: shadowed silhouette of his love, Nastasia Philippovna.
MEW!!! – said Puzon for a third time and at this moment Mishkin gazed upon him meaninglessly.
But did not move.
OK, — thought Puzon, — as far as I can see, he does not understand normal human language! I need to demonstrate to him what he needs to do. Thus, he began to caress his face and whiskers with his own paw.
“More obvious and clearly spelled out nobody can do, I think!”
Prince Mishkin stopped thinking in sadness about his love, came near, and began to pet the fluffy cheeks of Puzon.
“Thank God!» — thought Puzon, moving his face to let his Prince caress first the right and then left cheek, —«understood finally!”
What else can he do? — thought purring Puzon, — Dostoyevski had a very serious reason when he called him “IDIOT!»
F. M. Dostoyevski later had admitted, that such a lesson of “How to think and to use your common sense” given by Puzon, made a very positive influence on Prince Mishkin.
The latter became much less depressed and developed a strong power of mind!