THE URBAN LEGEND
Harvey the Chihuahua trudged on the street that bright sunny afternoon. He checked and double checked to make sure there was nothing he was missing. His recorder was in the lower zip of the pouch he hung on his waist. His writing pad and pen were also safely tucked in the pouch while his camera dangled on his neck. He dipped his hand in the side zip and pulled out a piece of paper. On the paper is the address of the house he was going to. A call had come in that morning from a rather unknown cat. The cat had called himself “the urban legend”. That was what spurred Harvey to want to conduct the interview. He had stories to post on the weekly column but none was half as exciting as the name of the cat that had called.
“The urban legend!” Harvey mused to himself and laughed. He hoped deep within him that the interview wouldn’t be one of those boring ones that would leave him begging to be allowed to leave. Those days are the ones he wished Webster himself would come conduct the interview. But Harvey loves his job. He would arrive in the venue of the interview with positivity and seat all through every interview without wagging his tiny-winy tail in impatience.
“House 112, Yorkshire Lane.”
Harvey checked and double checked the name on the paper and the one printed boldly on the house with a long stretch of well mowed lawn in front of him. The gardener under the soft rays of the sun falling on the skin gently was at the far end of the yard working the lawn mower. Harvey wagged his tail and went straight for the doorbell.
Harvey took two steps backward after what seemed like eternity. Whoever was inside did not come to answer the door on time. When the crack of the door grew wider, Harvey realized why. A big, bright brown, tramp cat stood there with little golden glasses sitting gingerly on his nose. His whiskers which had grown white fell down around its exposed teeth.
“Good morning. Are you the Chihuahua from the blog?” The cat asked.
Harvey looked at the cat. It had aged. He estimated his years to be 86 cat years which is approximately 12 human years.
“My name is Harvey.” Harvey introduced himself as the cat stepped aside nimbly for him to pass.
“I am Chuco. I am the urban legend.” The cat responded.
He directed Harvey to his study where the interview would take place. Harvey immediately understood why it was so. The room he was led to contained portraits of the cat in different poses. It was during his hay days when the sun still excited him when it comes out like a fluffy ball in the distant horizon.
Harvey was soon set. He had test run his recorder and everything was working perfectly. He had also taken shots of Chuco to accompany his story. He didn’t want the old cat looking like he was sleeping when it was time to take pictures at the end of the interview. Harvey looked at the cat who returned his look with a quite purr.
Harvey: “Why do you refer to yourself as the urban legend?”
Chuco: “It is simple. I live in the urban part of Anderson. I am also old and I hear old people are legendary.”
Harvey: “Are you saying there is nothing legendary about you?”
Chuco: “None I can remember for now. There are days that I feel my memory has been trapped with webs like a stubborn fly. I spend those days staring at these framed photographs trying to juggle my memory back but nothing!”
Harvey: “That means there could have been something about you that is legendary judging from the framed pictures.”
Chuco: “I believe so. Life here has been a bit on the slow side. There is no excitement anymore. When I came across the interview your boss did, I was excited. I felt maybe if I get interviewed too, then I will be experiencing a little bit of life in here.”
Harvey: “There is a picture of you adorning a medal shaped like a mouse. Can you narrate what brought about the medal?”
Chuco: “Nothing… My owner is different. She loves taking pictures. One day she came back home with that medal over there, wore it on me and took a couple of pictures. Two days later, the frame appeared.”
Harvey: “Has it always been like this?”
Harvey: (feeling exasperated) “This… Your life… Devoid of action and excitement.”
Chuco: “Not exactly. Before I came here, I was just a tramp cat like every other cat. I lived in a house and chased mice about. Those were the days. I get to run and dig and even climb walls. I caught more mice than any of the other eighteen cats. I was a hero until she came around.”
Harvey: “Wow… That means you are a legend then.”
Chuco: “Don’t ask, don’t tell. Now I am more bored and spend all day lapping milk or sleeping in a bed filled with plastic mice. My owner thinks it is the real thing. So to entertain her, when she comes around, I grab one of the plastic mice and chew on. She is always excited when she sees me doing that. She whips out her phone and make a video of me which she posts on a social media called Instagram. I have heard her calling me a celebrity cat most of the time.”
Harvey: “Has there been any incidence in this house that has triggered your instincts lately?”
There was no answer from the other side. Harvey lifted his nose up from the pad he had read the question from. Chuco was slumped slightly on the chair he reclined on. His tongue stuck out from a corner of his mouth. For a moment, Harvey was alarmed. It was after he looked closely at the cat that it occurred to him that the old cat had passed out and was sleeping soundly apparently due to exhaustion from talking for two long.
Harvey shook his head; so much for being an urban legend. As he turned to leave, an idea occurred to him. He turned around and took one of shot of the cat. He was very well going to publish the interview with the picture and accompanying headline:
“WHEN LEGENDS BECOME URBAN!”