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The Porcupine's Quill:  A Satire Column
by Arshad M. Khan
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the satire column
Porcupine's Quill
August 9, 2015


News Item:  Japan marked the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima
and Nagasaki (August 6 and 9, 1945).

And you are an alley cat?

The name is Tom.  And I prefer to be known as an independently wealthy feline.

You survived Hiroshima?

You mean the day the sun exploded ... yes, I survived that.  And I survived the
second time it happened.  That was in Nagasaki.

You were in both!  How remarkable.  Only 18 humans are recorded as having had
the terrible misfortune of witnessing both.  You must be the only cat ... I mean feline.

Well, I had gone to the sea -- I am partial to fish you know -- and had feasted in the
night.  I was taking a quiet snooze sheltered by rocks and bushes when it happened.  
The city was gone, and further out so many corpses, so many ... all burnt.  A terrible
smell hung in the air.  Nothing left, so I walked away.

How did you end up in Nagasaki?

I kept walking, I didn't know where I was going.  Sometimes I hitched a ride.

I remember reaching the outskirts.  It was morning ... when suddenly the sun
exploded again.  I think, I used up two of my nine lives ... dead bodies, animals,
humans, some wandering around charred with their clothes burnt off ... same horrible
cooked smell -- I prefer my food rare, very rare.  It might have saved me.  Terrible
dogs, not so particular, eating the stuff, got sick and died.  I just walked away again.  
Have been living out my remaining seven lives.  Never thought I would.

Why do you say that?

I thought if this keeps happening, the world must surely end.  And there were no mice
left in the city.  So I went to the countryside, and by the sea.  Independent living.  It's
the best ...

How remarkable!  How remarkable!