Losing The Battle…

Last week we had a double feature— my son took a mental health day followed by a regular sick day.

Sick days are the worst. I wonder if “typical” sick kids use the same maniacal quantity of energy as my son to argue. At noon, shortly after his 500th  “NOOOOO!!!” I let out a sigh of happiness when he conked out for a nap on the couch.

Our kitty must be able to smell sleep since it took her two seconds after Liev’s snores started to visit for some Mama love. The problem, of course, was that Liev was curled up in her favorite blanket.

Since I would not let her jump on his chest to knead contentedly, she paced and meowed forlornly. I whisked her away and heaved her outside lest she wake Liev. She shivered pathetically as the cold wind ruffled her fur.

Meow, meow, meow, shiver. Sigh.

I let her back in and we spent the next ten minutes in a dramatic but silent battle. Kitty tried to leap on the couch as I gestured vigorously to keep her away. I tossed pillows and made scary faces. When she circled around behind the couch and crouched to jump, I chased her away. She stubbornly returned.

Finally, I remembered she was a cat and took her away.  I carried her upstairs and deposited her in the bedroom for the balance of Liev’s nap. I closed the bedroom door.

Apparently 45 minutes is too long for a senior kitty bladder. She dug a dainty little nest in my pillows, relieved herself, and snoozed on hubby’s bed till I let her out.

I did not notice the accident until bedtime. All I could only say was “Oh, no!” for the twenty minutes straight.

Fortunately, a pillow absorbed most of the mess. The mattress was spared. I washed up the bedclothes and found the fresh sheets to be extra soft and cuddly.

What did I learn from this, aside from not to close the door on kitty? Be grateful. You can always be surprised by the unforeseen.

The Kitty Speaks!


Kitty sleeps in my art room downstairs. We gated the former dining room by velcroing Liev’s deconstructed crib sides to the doorways. This sounds much worse than it looks. It looks as if we have snazzy custom wood gates.

Anyway, kitty sleeps away from us for her own health and safety. Cats have nocturnal moments incompatible with three light and grumpy sleepers. Nevertheless, meowing concerts sometimes wake me.

One reason kitty wakes me is  Liev. He is about 100% potty trained at night, but with the new school year, he has been shouting out for a potty escort. The shadows in the stairway spook him.

When I was a kid, my mom cured my hallway fears with a flashlight. If we tried that with Liev, he’d dismantle the flashlight and eat the bulb. So, the household ears are open at night for Liev.

The other reason kitty wakes us—she has perfected meowing “Mama.” A year ago, my Mom observed that kitty does a first-rate imitation of Liev’s “Mama!” I dismissed this offhand. My mistake. I recently noticed that the “ma-meowing” peaks at five in the morning. It jars me awake since it sounds enough like Liev to fool my sleeping brain.

Today was the third morning in a row she woke me with a thousand insistant meows. I wondered what kitty wanted. She had fresh litter, lots of food and a bowl of bottled water big enough to swim in.

At six, I dragged my cranky self downstairs. She rushed to the kitty gate, “Ma-meow? Meow, Meow?” I let her out. She ran half way across the kitchen and turned to see if I was following her. I followed her. She dashed into the downstairs bathroom. “Marr-rrow?” Aha. She wanted to show me how delicious the toilet water was. Sigh.

Next month, I am buying this.

We Shaved The Kitty!


I’ve always been wary of cats. When my husband suggested we get one, I balked. Cats are fluffy. I hate fluffy. When we had a chow mix, I personally shaved her to the “needs sunscreen” level every three weeks. My aversion to wooly textures causes me much squirming and hand washing.

If cats came with reptile skin and ornate bumpy patterns, I’d own a fifteen acre kitty farm. But, they don’t, so adding one to our houshold two years ago was a big deal. I took baby steps. I started with LOLcats. Fifty pages of cute captioned cats melted my heart. I began to look for the perfect companion.

I found her at the Petsmart Adpot-A-Pet Giardia Center. Pearl, aged five, was not the loveliest cat, but she had extra toes, snaggly teeth and a sweet disposition. When I met her for the first time, she shed clumps and handfuls of white fur. The Animal Rescue staff assured me it was due to stress. She’d been at the center for months. I loved her. Instantly. She purred and rubbed on me, and I shook off the hair without thinking.

So, the cat my husband wanted became the cat my husband complained about. Kitty Pearl does not excel at grooming. I brush her, but I cannot tackle the dense fur on her bottom or poochy tummy. Every morning, cottony clouds of kitty fur breeze across our wooden floor.  I prefer to groom Pearl professionally, but it is expensive. Saturday morning, a cup and a half of kitty hair clumps greeted us.

My husband and I bickered over what to do. We settled on a butt and belly shave. Pearl was sweet and compliant through the whole process. Egor held her as I shaved off two quarts of hair. We removed the bulk of her problem fur.  When she sat or laid down, you could not tell she’s been trimmed. Otherwise, she looked as if she sported a scruffy tutu.

This morning, we woke up to find the same quantity of fur littering the floor. Perplexed, my husband speculated that she must have a plastic bag of fur she scatters just to vex us.