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What this blog needs is more gosh-darned catblogging

Charlotte’s got that whole cowl thing going. With the pointy ears and the slitty green eyes, she looks a right Batman. In truth, she’s a sweet and stupid animal who stands with all four feet in the litterbox and somehow manages to piss all over the floor.

Damien, on the other hand, is an evil little fucker. I bet if you shaved him, he’d be covered in gang signs and six-six-sixes.

Some day, let us shave him.

Usually, when they find themselves this close together, it results in fuzzy chunks of free-floating catskin (hers, mostly) and the sound as of earth’s mighty tectonic plates grinding together. If tectonic plates were made of cats and razorblades.

Here, the dog next door has caught their several eyes and evoked a rare moment of feline solidarity.


Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 12:17 am

Man, I hate cats.

Comment from Godiva
Time: June 21, 2007, 1:10 am

Damien rocks.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 3:10 am

You can’t hate cats, JW. They’re like houseplants. You feed them, you water them, they look pretty on the windowsill.

Hairy throwpillows.

Comment from EW1(SG)
Time: June 21, 2007, 4:45 am

The vet is always amazed by my cat’s “K” tatoos.

(Cats aren’t real smart, it’s difficult for them to spell “Crips” correctly.)

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 11:15 am

A cat adopted me once. A few months after that, I was shaving, and I noticed him in the bathroom mirror, tearing down the hallway in an orange panic. I walked into the bedroom to see where he’d gone, and he bolted from under the bed and ran back up the hallway. I noticed as he streaked by that something appeared to be chasing him. I found him in the living room, panting in total exhaustion, still wide-eyed in terror.

I should mention here that I used to wear a ponytail (for the usual middle-aged “if I have it long in back they won’t notice I’m bald in front” reasons.)

Apparently, he’d eaten one of the long hairs that fell out (in rather too-generous quantities, even back then), and although it had survived the ordeal of his digestive system, it had not been fully eliminated when he took his morning constitutional, which resulted in a cat-turd at one end of the hair, and a terrified cat at the other. However fast he ran, he just could not escape the malevolent cat-turd that persistently dogged his every evasion.

There’s a moral in there somewhere–something Nietzschean, I’m sure–but the only thing I learned at the time was that cats do NOT like being laughed at.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 11:55 am

See? How can you not love an animal haunted by the bumping ghost of his own morning dump?

My last cat was kind of a pain in the ass. We never really hit it off and so, of course, he lived to be twenty. He used to eat stuff he shouldn’t. The morning I closed on my house, I watched from across the room as he thoughfully swallowed a needle and thread. He finished with a surprised look on his face and a colorful thread hanging out of his mouth. Every time I gave it a yank, he’d let out a “K-kahk-k-k!” I rush to the vet, threw him behind the counter and said, “fix it, I have to be somewhere.”

One year at Christmas, a friend observed, “there is a festive strand of holiday tensil hanging from your cat’s anus.” And so there was. Surprisingly tough stuff, aluminum tensil. I couldn’t pull it loose and he didn’t work it through for days. He, too, seemed to understand the unkind nature of laughter. Wheezing, uncontrollable, helpless laughter.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 12:23 pm

The cat we picked up from the pound to keep our “I’m being chased by my own shit” cat was the most unlikeable cat I’ve ever encountered. Naturally, she decided she and I must breathe the same air whenever possible.

She died in her sleep a couple of days ago, at the age of 20 (outliving the funny, likeable cat by a good six years).

I guess what I’m saying here is: Patience. All good things come to he who waits.

PS: Yes, tinsel seems more powerfully irresistible than catnip. Our litterbox remains holiday-festooned well into February.

Comment from Dawn
Time: June 21, 2007, 1:14 pm

I had two cats premarriage, but then the babies came and the children’s fascination with the litter box was just too much for me to handle. Imagine finding your offspring eating litterbox contents. And with middle of the night diaper changing, I just could not handle another creature solely dependent upon me to dispose of their excrement. We tried to make them outdoor kitties, but they were afraid of their own shadow and would cower on the front porch until the door was opened and then run in and hide in some impossible crevice. The black one took to peeing in my child’s bedroom whenever he had the opportunity. Pay back, I think. I have a crazy story of how the gray one came back to our house months after we took him to the pound. I felt terrible when we found him cowering on our front porch all bloody clawed and skinny from his 25 mile journey. He scratched me and ran off and I never saw him again. Pay back. Cat’s are smarter than you think.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 1:54 pm

We had a dog that used to eat the contents of the litterbox. I’d be sitting in my room reading, and I’d hear crunch-crunch-crunch. Made me nuts. It was one of those things that got on my nerves progressively, until the day I went flying toward the litterbox, screaming. Turns out, that time it was the actual cat, trying to have a moment of privacy for his bidness. He almost had a nervous breakdown.

JW, the nice cat was a ginger? Every ginger cat I’ve had was a sweetheart. If fate ever lets me choose a cat, I’m getting a big fat orange tom.

I read an article years ago on Medline or somewhere about how orange cats tend to be good-tempered. According to the article, this is because pigmentation of the body also carries over, to some extent, to pigmentation in certain key areas of the brain.

I thought, “holy shit! There’s a thesis that would have all sorts of uncomfortable implications if this weren’t a veterinary paper!”

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 2:30 pm

I’ll agree that it’s possible that cats are smarter than we think, but I know with every fiber of my being that they are more evil than we think.

You can bet Satan’s sending them xmas cards.

Comment from mesablue
Time: June 21, 2007, 2:33 pm

pigmentation of the body also carries over, to some extent, to pigmentation in certain key areas of the brain.

Then, why are redheaded women so flat out nuts?

I speak from many years of torture and multiple near death experiences.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 2:38 pm

Is that the proper nomenclature for an orange cat–ginger? I never knew that; my wife and I just called him an orange-flavored cat. He was fat and long-haired; he had several concentric white/orange/white circles on his left side, which to my way of thinking was an invitation if not a challenge, but my wife refused to read my Christmas wish list if it included a BB gun so what are ya gonna do?

Comment from porknbean
Time: June 21, 2007, 2:49 pm

We had a siamese cat growing up. She was the runt of the litter and never did get very big. She was the sweetest little girl and so pretty. Thing was, my mother’s personality was in conflict with her. She would get pissed over the hair the cat would shed and vacuum the piss out of her. Literally. And when the terrified cat would pee whilst getting Hoovered, my mom would proceed to beat her with the end of the sucker. Or throw her down the stairs.
Come to think of it, she treated us kids that way too. I remember when I was a little girl, she would beat my head with the comb because she said I caused my ears to stick out. Another time I was tossed down the hallway like a caber.
Anyhoo, while I miss that cat, I don’t care for cats in general because I am now deathly allergic to them.

Comment from Dawn
Time: June 21, 2007, 3:07 pm

Anectodally I would have to agree with the cat color = cat personality hypothesis. Every black cat I have ever owned has been half crazy. I prefer tabby toms who get very very fat after you have them fixed. Keeps them humble.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 3:20 pm

Gosh, ‘bean. Later on, will you tell us stories about the Big House after your time inside for Justifiable Matricide?

I had a grandma like that. She hated cats, but she took up with a stray in old age. When it misbehaved, she punished it by putting a garden hose in its mouth and turning the water on. Horrible old lady. The cat survived her, and we had to take it in. Damn, that was (not surprisingly) one mean animal. Straining every cat-lovin’ nerve in my body and I couldn’t stand that cat.

“Ginger” is just what the Brits call them, JW. I sometimes forget how badly they’ve polluted my vocabulary. I think we called them “red” back home.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 3:37 pm

Well, better “red” than “dead.” That’s my motto.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 4:18 pm

I’d read that feline digestive systems are none too efficient, and that the “end product” is actually still fairly nourishing. Allegedly thats why dogs munch on it whenever they run into it. I had a neighbor with a dog like that. I always called it Buttbreath and would not let it lick me.

I am really surprised (and thankful) that someone – somewhere – in some culture – has not turned it into some kind of delicacy. I know there are coffee beans that go through the sam “process” in some animal before being collected and brewed up. I don’t want to remember the name of it.

Comment from Dawn
Time: June 21, 2007, 4:37 pm

Hey Steamboat. You’re back! We missed you. Weasel had to work and he was no fun yesterday.

Comment from Lokki
Time: June 21, 2007, 4:37 pm

Cats hate it when you laugh at them. Our big white Turk (He lived to be 17) went out one night and lost a fight. He came home with a couple of bites on his butt that wouldn’t heal up. So – off to the Vet. Because he was a long haired cat, the Vet had to shave him to make sure he’d found all the bites. Our cat came home looking like he was wearing a white T-shirt, no pants, and white socks. He had the cutest little pink tummy and legs. He was also pretty soft looking for such a tuff guy.

We couldn’t help laughing when he walked into a room. He literally would back out of the room when we laughed at him.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 4:54 pm

Steamboat! Thank God You’re Here!

Weasel had us all doing something he called cat-a-chism, and while the wine was tasty (if a bit corked), everyone agreed that it was hell on our knees.

Comment from Lokki
Time: June 21, 2007, 5:19 pm

Yes – He was making usall become converts to Catlicksism or something.

Comment from Lokki
Time: June 21, 2007, 5:22 pm

He was going to be the leader….with a funny hat and everything!

He was even chanting something (I didn’t hear it all) but it ends with

Pope goes to Weasel!

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 5:48 pm

I took me a while to catch up on the Weasel posts.

I did see that Weasel’s customer is expecting him to work. How rude! It’s my belief that Weasel’s true purpose on this here earth is to amuse and educate us folks.

Cat-a-chism, huh. I never went in for that cough-up-a-hairball and you are forgiven claptrap. And the communal tonguebaths – eew.

Damned right – cats hate being laughed at. I’ve seen it too many times. All cat lovers know this, I think.

Paine – I was thinking about our discussion the last two days while tramping around in the woods looking at potential retirement property. Each time I pulled a tic off my grizzled yet so-delicate skin I named him Nietzsche – then flicked him into a jar of alcohol. I am not liking them.

BTW: I loved noj’s latest 10-point ass-ripping of the Wardo minion/wife/whatever. Now she and Pow-wow have matching wedgies. I would recommend that they wash their undies separately, though.

Dawn – was that your husband that posted? Ah-ha. I knew if I did nothing it would work! It was all part of my Plan. I’m looking forward to being baffled by him on a regular basis.

Lokki – hurl math or food recipes at Weasel and he’ll settle down.

porknbeans – I knew some folks who had a cat that loved being handi-vacuumed. Weird. But great for the shedding problem.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 5:53 pm

McGoo! PERMETHRIN, you maroon! You don’t want to be picking them off’n you.

You teasing me, or what? It’s not coffee beans that have been through “some animal” — it’s Weasel Coffee, thankyouverymuch. And if you think it’s fun hacking up those little goobers, think again!

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:07 pm

I kept tellin’ them at the drug store and the hardware store “Permafrost – or whatever”, but they didn’t have a clue. I tried DEET – ain’t worth a tiny pinch o’ raccoon shit for tics.

Yeah – I know picking them off can be bad – but I get all epileptic when something’s attached itself to me*. I did catch them early. Mostly they went for the back of the knees where its soft.

*I decided long ago that my whole body is an EXIT. Every inch. Every pore. Every orifice except my foodhole (which I am in sole control of) is an EXIT. No entry. By anything! I hate things that ….attach…or penetrate.

Comment from Gnus
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:09 pm

Weasel coffee… Starbutts?

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:10 pm

Oh – the coffee thing? There is some bean in Vietnam or somewhere else in SE Asia that monkeys or sumpin eat. It comes out unscathed, and the natives make a coffee drink out of it after “monkey-processing”. I was offered some when working on the Left Coast years ago. I was actually a bit embarrassed at my bodies’ reaction to the idea. Total physical revultion.

There are also some plant seeds that won’t germinate until being “processed” this way. But I fergit which ones.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:12 pm

Gnus – Chock-Full-O’-Butt?

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:14 pm

Revulsion. Revulsion.

I do hereby go on record as being a keyboard dyslexic, epileptic, maroon. I can spell, but my fingers can’t.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:15 pm

I’m guessing corn.

Comment from Gnus
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:17 pm

This is taking a nasty turn.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:20 pm

Could be, jw. God knows corn (other than sweet corn) has a tough enough skin.

Story: My uncle used to raise feed corn (for cows and the oil). He caught some city-slickers at the edge of his field filling up a basket with his corn. He was really friendly – “Naw – go ahaid – I got’s plenty!” he said.

You can cook it – boil it for hours – and it won’t ever soften enough to eat.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:22 pm

I count on you, JW. I always can.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:27 pm

I am, as Larry the Cable Guy pointed out over lattés once, sui generis.

Comment from Gnus
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:27 pm

We used to leave some corn ears in the garden until after the first frost then pop it. Not exactly like popcorn, but not bad.

That Starbutts coffee is made from beans that pass through the intestinal tract of a civet cat from Asia. Another type comes from the intestines of some bird in S. America. Neither type is reputed to taste like crap, although I’m thinking I’d rather not know from whence it came.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:35 pm

Valid point, Gnus. If I hadn’t know the proffered coffees’ origin I most likely would have guzzled it right down. And asked for seconds, probably. It’s supposed to be quite good.

Ok – civet cats, not monkeys. Civet (uh – juice from somewhere on/in the cats) is a perfumer’s ingredient, too. So it probably stinks to high heaven.

Comment from Gnus
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:52 pm

McGoo, you’re probably right about the monkeys. Intuitively it seems to me that monkeys would be more likely than cats to put weird stuff like coffee beans in their mouth.

I read about it over at Mostly Cajun, the bird kind anyways.

Either way, it’s not high on my menu.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 6:54 pm

No less than Shakespeare wrote a poem about drinking civet-cat-coffee…
To quote the bard:
“For from the stillitory of thy face excelling
Comes breath perfumed that breedeth love by smelling.”

(I’m pretty sure that was his subject matter, anyway. I think that was when he worked in Starbutts’ marketing department.)

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 7:21 pm

Yeah, jw, but I think:

‘Thou wert best set thy lower part where thy nose stands.’

from “All’s Well That Ends Well” is probably Shakespeare’s true reaction after sampling the StarButts.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 7:40 pm

I like the line right after that one, Steamboat:
“By mine honour, if I were but two hours younger, I’d beat thee: methink’st thou art a general offence, and every man should beat thee.”

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: June 21, 2007, 8:00 pm

I assume he was addressing the coffee purveyor.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 21, 2007, 8:05 pm

Mercutio (sips coffee, gags): “Ask for me tomorrow, and you shall find me a grave man!”

Comment from porknbean
Time: June 21, 2007, 9:53 pm

…”Gosh, ‘bean. Later on, will you tell us stories about the Big House after your time inside for Justifiable Matricide?”…..

I left at the earliest opportunity, so it never got that far. As an adult, I keep my distance. She is not good for my blood pressure.

Heh. You know how cats sometimes get a wild hair up their butts and tear out for no good reason? Running sideways or hanging halfway up doorjams? Sounding like a herd of elephants…..One day, the cat I mentioned above got a wild hair, which we kids encouraged and chased because it was so damned entertaining, and wound up halfway up the livingroom drapes.
Unfortunately for the cat, my mom had just arrived home from somewheres and we could see her standing on the sidewalk out front, face red, mouth moving furiously, finger pointing. Cat took one look, said ‘Oh shit’, and hid in the basement. Mother came storming into the house, slamming doors, windows rattling at the ferocity of her cursing.

Comment from Lokki
Time: June 22, 2007, 1:53 pm

Weasel…. Now I wish you hadn’t told me about Weasel Coffee. One of my programmer friends is Vietnamese and he just left today for a two week trip back to the old country.

I’ve been drinking Vietnamese Coffee (Trung Nguyen – The No. 1 coffee in Vietnam) lately I make it at my desk, using a French Press, because it’s fun and a lot cheaper than Starbughs.

Anyhow I asked him to bring me back a pound of whatever everybody in Vietnam thinks is the best coffe.

I had not idea that might involve travel down the intestinal tract of a weasel

Now you got me worried. Damn.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: June 23, 2007, 11:29 am

Thanks, Lokki! Now we know what Fantastic Voyage II will be about.

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