I watched the news tonight and, in one of the stories, the reporter used the word "critter."
It reminded me of a stuffed animal that I used to have. It was called "Critter" and came with its own cage. If I recall, my parents (OK, my mother) gave Critter to me when I went to college. It looked kind of like a guinea pig, I guess. I tried to find a picture online, but, no luck.
Anyway, Critter and I went off to college. I lined his cage with a copy of the Juniatian and hung the cage from the mattress springs. I had a loft, so the mattress was essentially the upper bunk, and my desk was underneath.
During my freshman year, Critter and I made our home on the third floor of one of the dorms. I was friends with several of the girls on the first floor. One day, I came back to my room to find an empty cage. The door was open and Critter was gone!
I don't recall a ransom note, but I knew where to lookfor my kidnapped Critter. Down to the first floor I went - and found Critter tied to a bedpost with a headband that belonged to one of my friends - a dead giveaway because I'd seen her wear it to softball practice! Poor Critter! I quickly rescued Critter from the clutches of those girls and returned him to the safety of his cage.
Where Critter is now, I have no idea. I kept him for a while, I think, after college. But, about 10 years ago, I gave away the vast majority of my stuffed animal collection, including Critter.
Wherever he is, I hope he's happy.