Cat (mine)


Well, the last of the original ‘beasts of burden’ is now gone.

For the 3rd time in less than 3 months I had to put one of my “original” pets to sleep. Allie was my first “real” (non-fish, non-bird) pet. I never even thought I was an animal person until I got her from the Humane Society 15 years ago.

She had been found in an alley so I named her “Alley”  but much like my own name nobody got it right, so it morphed into Allie.

I got better stories from Bubba but Allie lived a no less colorful life and had her own idiosyncrasies and unique qualities.

*She was annoyingly unmercifully affectionate, always trying to be right where I was all the time. “Talking” to me. Hence the suffix “the co-dependent kitty.” She always had to be nearby, if not on, me.

*She liked it when I held her tightly. Really tightly. She would relax into my arms and quit whining right away.

*She’d been separated from her mother too early and would try to suckle on my ear until the end. For real.

She’d get this look and wouldn’t even look at you, just at your ear, as she tried to go in for the suck. I warned several people, they didn’t believe me, and they experienced otherwise.

Fortunately she didn’t do this with too many people.

*Until very near the end she chased her tail, caught and dismembered rabbits (the 2nd to last one was brought into the living room and I dragged it, Allie, and the area rug they were on out to the front porch overnight), and rested on the kitchen window ledge looking at birds.

She was defintely the great hunter, having caught and partially dismembered innumerable m/voles as well as the aforementioned rabbits. Oh, and the snake (story here). Who could forget the snake?

*Several years ago she disappeared for 2 months and 1 day. She got trapped outside during a storm and freaked out and I guess ran. Twice I saw her down the block at the park but she was so traumatized (weird for such a co-dependent animal) that she wouldn’t come near me. I finally gave up.

Then one morning I was out in my garden and she toodled up and rubbed against me like I’d just seen her yesterday. She had lost some weight but she’d survived the mean streets of S’bury just fine.

From that point on, she put up with absolutely no sh** from any animal she didn’t want around. Girl was scared of her (for no reason) so she wasn’t an issue, but Bubba was used to being able to antagonize her at will. When she got back after her street livin’ she wouldn’t take it no mo.

*My favorite features were her Egyptian looking profile and her tan front paws that bowed outward like Vs.

Unlike Li’l Effer, Allie was calm at the end and died peacefully. I’ve been wishing the cats would finally die already, but I will miss her.

Yet I have to admit I felt a huge sense of freedom when I threw away the litter boxes the other day. Huge. Cannot be over-stated how huge…

I was confident I was over cats and then I saw this young cat in the ‘hood the other day. It was soooo sweet and affectionate. I wavered for a moment and then I remembered all the dead m/voles, rabbits, litter box scooping, the tail-breaks (objects broken by their tails), the amount of hair (example here).

The cats were a great addition to my life and I loved them mostly dearly, but I’m over the cat thing for now.


Allie (left) and Bubba in their “fat cat” days.


Earlier post about Bubba

This time it’s for real. He went out just like he lived his nickname. The vet had to give him 2 sedative shots (each enough for a 50 lb. cat!) and I still had to hold him down when he gave him the “real” shot. He wasn’t even really fighting or threatening though, just growling…

I really didn’t want it to be that way. I wanted it to be calm and for him to not resist. But if he’d done that he wouldn’t have been my L’il Effer…at least his little constantly-purring engine died quickly.

I’ll miss my little Bubby. Nobody liked him but me and he didn’t really like anybody but me, so it’s hard for people to be sympathetic except to say they’re sorry for “my loss,” and seldom have truer words been spoken. It is (only) “my loss.”

Well, and Allie’s. But she whines about everything anyway. This just adds fuel to her dimming fire.

Silly silly Fanny – she’s still trying to get Li’l Effer (more here) to play with her, even going into the “hey let’s play” position (aka ‘downward-facing dog’  pose) and play-barking at him.

To his credit (or is he just in shock?) he’s not running or hissing or swatting her, though. He’s just looking at her and staring.

If he had a brain he’d be thinking, “Are you nuts? Do you know who I am, what I represent? I have scared large dogs and children before you.”

But he’s just staring at her while she keeps trying. Me? I am just sitting here in disbelief that she still has energy after 3 walks, running and playing separately and together with the neighbor girl, me, at least 4 toys, and another dog in the back yard today.

I also can’t believe that after 10 days she’s still trying to get him or Allie to play with her. She just doesn’t get the whole hissing thing and that it means ‘No, I am menacing – go away.’

Poor naive little Fanny has so much to learn on the way to growing up.

…Without the aid of pharmaceuticals, illicit drugs or alcohol I went to bed at 9:30 Fri. night and slept until 11:30 Saturday morning, with just a little time “in the conscious world” to feed, medicate, and let my dog and neighbor dog out. I was tie-tie.

…My fiber intake has decreased over last couple of weeks. Since I’ve previously discussed my increases (example here) I thought you should know the current state of affairs. Don’t worry, it hasn’t caused any – uh – problems yet and I promise I’m not going to provide daily poop updates.

…I’m breaking a big rule that you don’t talk about looking for a job, but “marie/y hungry” is not a pretty picture, and I’m getting a little frantic. You may know that I work (thru a contracting co.) at the Everywhere Company, which recently “combined with” the Many Other Places Company to become the Holy Crap It’s a Huge Mega Company.

Long story short, they’re in cost-cutting mode, and my job is one of the costs they’re cutting (performance, results, team builder, “plays well with others,” customer satisfaction all aside). I saw the writing on the wall this summer (here) and have been looking since July. Have gotten some great interviews and 2nd interviews but no offer yet.

I have a new so-far-so-good pimp staffing firm now (another drama I’ll skip), and want to stay with them as long as I’m in <The City I Don’t Hate But Don’t Love>. I’m loyal to a fault (and I mean literally to a fault, as this loyalty has bitten me several times) but I have 5 weeks before I go on unemployment for the 1st time in my 30 year working life.

I don’t want to hurt anyone, burn any bridges, hack anyone off or be rude, butcha know I gotta eat. I really want my new staffing co. to come through for me, but I’d be stupid to put my whole stomach in one party’s hands. (Can you tell I’m talking myself into this as much as explaining it to you?) Again: “marie/y hungry” is not pretty. Plus it’s such a great time of year to be looking for a job…

So: if you point me in the direction that leads me to a new job in the same field and it pays close to or more than what I earn now, besides knowing you’ll get big time karma points, the prize I can offer for this contest (Omar: this IS a contest. Let me know and I’ll send you my LinkedIn URL) is that whoever helps me get some more interviews will be eliminated from the “I will house Marie/y and her 3 animals if necessary” list.

Need I say that that is worth more than any superficial prize? Yes? Well okay if you live nearby or I’m coming to visit you I’ll take you to dinner at a nice restaurant too, okay?

…product I wish I’d thought of: the Stayball. It’s a ball (obvously) that you can (among other things) use as a chair. Get it? It STAYBALLizes you. It’s a bonus that the sand in it prevents it from rolling around when you’re not sitting on it. No more tripping over the “it’s coming after me” ball after I step away from it.


…”living the dream”: Here are photos from May (selecting just “the right” already-gnawed on bone)


and the other day when I decided to finally throw them out but then decided they’d make a good picture:


In the intervening time I’ve thrown away countless (really – countless) other bones and given a big bag of the long ones to my sister to stuff (for her dog) but I’ve also switched to the small bones (trying to save $$) and my dog has now lost 3 lbs!

People might think I’m weird but I prefer to think of myself as “different,” someone who “thinks outside the box” and isn’t constrained (too much) by societal norms. Okay, re-reading this I’ll just admit what the neighbors and my friends/fam already know: I am weird albeit in a fun, lovable way.

…Compliment of the week: My physical therapist said I have excellent body mechanics. That means I bend well and properly (although obviously not well enough or I wouldn’t be seeing her).

…Today’s Words of Wisdom: Don’t buy a bag of baked BBQ Baked Lays without just admitting right off that you will eat the whole thing in one sitting. You’re just kidding yourself otherwise.

I don’t have these revelations too often (the last one) but here’s my latest helpful household hint:

For less mess (things knocked over, biological accidents, hair tumbleweeds), less work (chasing, yelling, cleaning litter boxes) and most important to the discussion at hand: to reduce the need to clean (be it vacuuming or cleaning up biological accidents that the dog doesn’t eat) simply get rid of all your animals.

Not that I practice what I preach mind you, but I am sorely tempted.

But do let me know if you’re interested in Li’l Effer, Allie the co-dependent kitty, or Girl the beagle (for whom I’m willing to forge adoption papers so you can take tax and/or medical expense deductions).

I know I’ve made them all sound so appealing over the years so I don’t really expect any takers but at least you have a new housekeeping hint to implement.

You’re welcome.

I have a math problem. And it’s a revolting math problem to boot: When do you count a dead m/vole as one dead m/vole and when do you count it as 1/2 a dead m/vole?

All that’s left on the back porch are, um, the innards. Yeahhh, I can’t wait to clean that up. Which is why I’m writing this instead…

Since, to my knowledge, there is no how – many – parts – of – a – mole/vole – count- as – an – entire – m/vole rule book (but tell me if there is one) I’m going to take the higher number and use it in the summer count (click on summer m/vole count category if you don’t know what I’m referring to).

I think I can justify counting it as one by pointing out that cleaning up bloody guts is way more disgusting than cleaning up “just” the carcass.

Plus, since I’m the only one I know of who’s doing the summer m/vole count, I think I can make up my own rules regardless.

God I don’t want to go out there.

I just want to know “Why?”

What makes a cat (that eats an animal’s head and tail) “just say no” to its innards? Did he smell something icky in the innards that made him say “No, I don’t think I’m eating the innards tonight”?

Or was he just too full after eating the head, the tail, the arms and legs, skin, etc. and just decided to save the guts for later? No, that couldn’t be: it was Bubba. He’s never met a food item he didn’t eat too much of.

If I were a conspiracy theorist/anthropomorphist I would say the cats are mad at me because I’m dog-sitting this w/end so they’re telling me they’re p.o.’d by leaving the guts behind because they know I hate gut cleanup duty the most.

But that implies they have a moral compass, which is clearly not the case, or they never would have put me in this position to begin with.

Plus, it was Bubba who did this. And come on — he’s just not smart enough to have a moral compass. He can barely find the litter box.

Therefore, I hereby count this as summer m/vole number 6. But I’d count it as 526 if grossness were a relevant factor.

Plus one=

5 this year

This time: I got to hear its last squeak before Allie brought it (dead) onto the porch and then totally ignored it.

I guess the thrill was in the catch. This is often the case in life, eh?

Yes, here you get not just dead animal stats but also philosophical musings. All for free — my gift to you.

You’re welcome.

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