Sunday, January 06, 2008

A tale of new kitties

We were feeling a mite lonely over here at Bean Gables. I mean, we never thought we'd lose one of our kitties, and our house used to feel appropriately supersaturated.

Animals used to regularly precipitate out of thin air...
*pick up a pillow - there's a kitty!
*look under the couch, there's a rabbit!
*put down your seltzer...someone's head is stuck in the glass!

After Stoat got hit, the house just felt so empty. Though I wouldn't dream of "replacing" her, which is totally impossible, I felt like there was room for one more being on the bed.

After finals, I went to the local humane society and promptly fell in love with a 7-month-old fuzzy black kitty. I had no intention of going home with such a young one, but, well, his whiskers are so long they meet under his own chin. I cannot resist extravagent whiskerage.

He also has actually delightful ear and toe feathers, which is utterly charming. We got a little male because we hoped that Beast and Grex might like him more, since Beast's one and only love was Sarah's ancient ginger bruiser, Butterscotch. Maybe in the future there'll be less hissing, but right now it's a veritable viper's pit.

He's such a good one, he's so fluffy and easy to dandle. He has delightful wide eyes that change from green to brown, and the longest, most twirlable mustachios you've ever seen.

Alexis called him Trout, which is a surprisingly good name for a kitten. I'm on the verge of renaming him though...I'm settling around The Lesser Land Squid McCool. because he's obviously a terrestrial cephalopod, and not a very big one either.

Friday, January 04, 2008

'Scuse me ma'am, your cat asplode.

Now will commence three stories RE: cats.

The first is called:
"World Cup 2006"

That Zabar, he's a crazy bastard of a cat.

We were wrapping up a New Year's visit to Chicago, during which I developed a mouth on me (I was surprised by the mister (not a Mister, like "hey mister, need a shine?," but that Legionnaire-vector that increases the water weight of your $7/pound kale) at Whole Foods and responded by screaming "God Damn Mother Fucker" and dropping my lettuce on the floor) and should have been kept consistently drunk. We were heading back into an unexpected (to us) snowstorm that done broke all the branches and clogged up the driveway.

We'd carried all the luggage to the car, and were coming back up for the three dogs (Crisfield, Oryx, and Molly, who we have home with us right now). The dogs were concentrated in the hall, waiting for us...Oryx yodeled, and Chrisfield danced to see us again, and Zabar placed himself directly in the center of the hallway, looking even larger and more menacing than his 18 pounds. Molly gave a skitter and Zabar had just fucking had it. He went Zidane on Molly's head.

Not a little angry paw bat, like cats do, but he launched himself at her head and kicked and clung with all his might.

Molly gave a low, distressed groan and sank to the floor. This is not the first time Molly's head has been attacked by a cat. Grex attacked when she first laid yellow eyes on that dog's grizzled muzzle - Molly must have a face that cats just can't stand. All the kitties say: "I see that dog and I just want to kick her lips off." But Grex only had claws for the dog...when we grabbed her, she only struggled to get back to rake the shit out of Mol. Zabar's different. Last time he freaked out at a dog, Sarah sustained a horrible injury, had surgery, and had intravenous antibiotics for weeks and weeks. So, nobody was going to touch that cat. Besides which, it's against the rules.

Alexis kicked him first, I swear to god.

Let's call it a "nudge." She "nudged" Zabar off Molly's face using her shoe. When Zabar rebounded to attack, she nudged a little harder, and the next time harder still.

I was washing dishes at the sink, and screamed "What the fuck is going on?! Fucking damn it!" and ran to see Zabar rolling past my feet, regain his footing and run, spitting, back at the dog. This cat is black and white and approximately the size and shape of a soccer ball, and this final time, Alexis passed the cat to me. I caught him on the edge of my boot, and dribbled him toward the dining room (bouncing him repeatedly because he just kept trying to attack). I gave a final, firmer, "nudge" and he slid on his silky fur directly into Slocum, the former alpha-cat. Poor Slocum.

So, you know the idiom "the fur is flying"? I never really understood it before. When Zabar turned his wrath on Slocum and the two started to rumble in a rolling, hissing, maelstrom, tufts of fur started appearing. The tufts would be thrown fiercely from the center of the rumble and then gently float to the floor, as if Zabar were performing some magic trick of pulling tiny white handkerchiefs out of Slocum's hidden pockets. Except the pockets were Slocum's flesh and the handkerchiefs were probably a bit bloody.

I'd had just about enough of this. Foul! I "nudged" them apart. And then apart again. And again. And finally, I "nudged" Zabar onto his back and pinned him there with my boot, which he bit. Um, gnawed at.

I called to Alexis to open the bedroom door and laced my hands behind my back to I wouldn't be tempted to use them. I let him up and immediately "nudged" him a few times in the right direction - around the corner and down the hall. Alexis was waiting to "nudge" him through the door and GOAL! OLE, ole, ole, ole! Slam.

We should try that with a real ball sometime.