22  Bingley on the La-Z-Boy

A couple months ago my wife got me a new lounge chair.

It may be the best gift ever, better than Ralphie’s Red Ryder BB Gun (I never wanted a bb gun). Whenever I fall into that chair, I sigh, and if I sit there for very long, I fall into a gentle, pleasant nap.

Bingley likes it, too.

Not long ago we stretched out napping in the chair. When I woke, Bingley had his eyes open, and he was looking right at me.

“I’m more than just a cuddle lion,” he said.

Still a little fuzzy-headed from sleeping, I thought about that for just a moment and said, “I know.”

He nodded agreement. “I just wanted to make sure.”

I didn’t say anything right away, so he went on. “I’m a house lion.”

“Yes, I understand. You’ve corrected me on that point.”

“I do all sorts of important jobs. Every morning, when we take our tour, I make sure you stop at every important spot. When you’re gone, I patrol the house. I check every window and I listen at every door to make sure no one’s out there causing trouble. At night, when you’re sleeping, I’ll stand at my window and keep watch.”

“Thank you,” I said. “You’re the best house lion ever.”

He closed his eyes and nodded contentedly.

Bingley continued. “I also make sure you get some play time every day. Not just workout time: play time, so that you relax and we run around the house together. I clean my dish at mealtimes, I drink from my water bowls, and I keep clean: you know, the litter box and all that.”

“I know you do. You practice exemplary cleanliness.”

Again he closed his eyes and nodded.

“Sometimes when you spill crumbs on the floor, I do my best to help you clean them up. But you don’t let me.”

“They’re usually not good for you, so I don’t want you to eat them, but I appreciate your effort nonetheless.”

One more nod, but that time he didn’t close his eyes: he stared at me intently.

“You’d like a treat, wouldn’t you?” I asked.

“Treat!” he said, and he leaped off my lap and trundled off to the pantry, looking back only once to make sure I was following.

A craftsman definitely deserves a reward for good work.