I talked to Bobbie Louise Hawkins yesterday. We're doing Saturday talks during my stay in Boulder. Yesterday we talked about how a talented artist who does more than one art form can bifurcate their own genius, which will hamper them when it comes to being famous/making money.
"Those people who are famous have tunnel vision," Bobbie told me. "They just do one thing absolutely. They've got blinders on."
"Yeah," I said.
"Well," she smiled. "The other interesting thing is that people who do more than one art form find something else inside them."
"What do you mean?"
"They get to figure things out about themselves that those tunnel-vision folks won't."
"That might be true."
"That might be true."
"You see those buildings back behind the fence?" she asked me.
"Yup," I said.
"It used to be all these rental properties. So, naturally, all these cats started to come through into the yard because there were no threats for them here. There aren't any dogs or other issues. They like it here."
I nodded my head, "It's nice here."
"Yeah, it is. So there was this one black cat. It was an adolescent. It used to come meandering through that pathway there," Bobbie said and pointed at the path behind me. "And it would just come right up on my lap. He was an uncomfortable lap cat. He was too springy. He would curl around a few times and be off."
Bobbie moved her hand to the side as if she was releasing the cat onto the foilage beside the patio furniture. I tried to envision the cat hopping back and forth on the multileveled tiers that held the rose bushes, azaleas, and overgrown wildflowers that had intermingled through the neglected topsoil.
"One day this gorgeous Monarh butterfly was flying over on those bushes there, and this black cat was up and out of my lap and onto the butterfly. It turned around and these wings were fanned out on either side of its mouth. I bent over and gave him a whack on the butt, and the butterfly went off and got away. It probably died. I don't know, but at least I gave it a chance."
"Sure," I said.
"Then this cat turns, looks at me as if I'd done something horrible, and proceeds to march off terribly angry."
I look over at the path and see the cat proudly stomping off with its feelings hurt in my imagination.
"A couple days of later," Bobbie continued. "I hear this terrible raucaus outside. I rush out and see that black cat carefully making its way down to the far limb of that tree over there," Bobbie explains by pointing out the tree limb. "You see the one arching down over there?"
"I see it."
"Yeah, so this cat is carefully making its way down, and those birds are making a huge commotion. That's when I grab my hose -- and just -- turn it so the cat is properly drenched. I hit him with water for a bit, and then he jumped down into the garden, gave me an awful look, like how dare I, and then off he went again."
The cat moves past my legs without so much as a goodbye.
"About a week goes by, and here comes that black cat again. It's sitting right there on that step over there, when suddenly one of those birds comes whooshing down and whacks it on the back of the head. It immediately looks around stunned, grumbles a bit, and walks off again."
"He probably thought you hit him."
"I was just glad those birds taught him a lesson. Can you imagine? Remembering which cat it was that tried to attack their nest?"
Bobbie and I sat in silence after that. I mentioned showing her something on the Internet. We went inside. I showed her some websites. I read her some of Noah Cicero's writing. We talked about a new website for her. Then we called it a day.
"Want to do this next Saturday?" I asked.
"Sure, honey. It sounds like a plan."