Thursday, January 20, 2011

The price of keeping order

Life is difficult as a Very Important Cat. Most difficult is keeping the exploits of my live-in servant, Cat Shaffer, hidden as well as possible.
That, of course, is not easy. Despite her name, Cat is not fleet-footed nor a good jumper. She is rather clumsy, actually.
Which is why I rush up to see the action when she goes Upstairs. Downstairs is her province, hers and Big Stupid, the dumb dog that occupies space for no good reason. Upstairs is mine. It has a high wardrobe for me to sit on (and attack Big Stupid from), the kitchen sink that occasionally drips lovely fresh water for me, and a tall towel cupboard with no door, the perfect place to hide.
Big Stupid has enough brain cells to stay on Cat's big bed when we're all Upstairs. Oh, she tries to come into MY places, like the bathtub and under the bed. But we all know what one good whoosh of an un-declawed cat can do, don't we?
As she is prone to do, Cat announced to Big Stupid and me last night that she was going to take a bath. I like it when she takes a bath. Big Stupid stays on the bed and I go into the bathroom before the door closes. I walk the edge of the bathtub, play in the foamy bubbles Cat puts into the tub and yell at Big Stupid if she ventures off the bed and to the other side of the door.
The room was cozy and full of nice scented steam as I jumped off the tub and onto the floor. Instead of sitting inside the sink, one of my favorite places, I decided to curl up on the bath mat. I didn't think to tell Cat; I mean, really, is it any of her business where I nap?
Anyway, by the time I heard the water splashing as Cat rose from the tub it was too late. I was in mid-stretch, rather irritated by being awakened, when a big, wet foot came down on me. Naturally, I reacted as one must in such situations -- I bit Cat's big, wet foot.
She yelled as if I'd really hurt her. Her yelling scared me, so I went running for the sink. Cat, unfortunately, moved in the same direction. But she grabbed that towel cupboard and all the towels came falling out, all over her and me.
Well, that just made her yell more, which brought Big Stupid off the bed and into the hall. My ears could hardly stand the combination of Cat's yowling and Big Stupid's barking, so I did what I could to settle things down. I yelled back at Cat and swiped at her foot again.
Alas, she misinterpreted my attempt at peace and the next thing I knew, she had me in both hands and tossed me out to where Big Stupid waited.
We'll not go into the unpleasantness that ensued. What I will tell you is this: The dog may be bigger and louder, but mean and sneaky wins every time. As in dogs with bushy tails really should keep them out of the grip of determined felines.

Now you'll have to excuse me. I'm off to remind people to buy Cat's books, "Kentucky Blues" and "No Safe Place," both from Turquoise Morning Press. I do have a standard of living to maintain, you know.



Thursday, January 13, 2011

And she can't even drive ...

I may have mentioned that Maggie, the big Sheltie that occupies space in my house, has occasional flashes of intelligence that nearly equalz mine. Take last night when she was playing cars with Cat.

The treadle sewing machine on the stairway landing is my favorite place to sit. It gives me a perfect vantage point to gaze through the open stairway and watch Big Stupid (my loving nickname for Maggie) suck up to Cat.

Sometimes it works. Not like I'd ever lower myself to look sad-eyed in order to get a handful of popcorn, but it works for her. And she's also trained Cat to trade food she likes for stuff she's not supposed to have.

If only I had the power of speech, I'd tell poor Cat she's being suckered. Like last night's little toy cars.

Cat bought them for the boy that comes sometimes. He comes with Our Mark, the guy that calls her Mom. Anyway she came home one day with a whole package of those cars and the boy played with them and put them somewhere.

Maggie found them. Cat thought it was cute and said, "Trade, Maggie?" and gave her a puppy biscuit.

That was the red one. The dark blue one got her a peanut. The light blue one got her a cracker. The green one got her another biscuit. The yellow got her some puffcorn and Cat yelling, "Where are you finding those things?"

The best moment, the kind we cats live for when forced to share our abode with a dog, came when she found the white one.

"Give it up, dog, you cannot eat a Mustang!" Cat yelled as she threw yet another one of those hard biscuits at the dog and grabbed the car. Before Maggie could find the hidden cache of cars, Cat had her out the door and on her doggie cable on the front yard, out in the frozen snow.

Me, I enjoyed the show immensely. Enough so that tonight, when Big Stupid and Cat go to bed, I may knock all those confiscated cars off the dining room table and put them back under the sofa, right where I told Maggie  she could find them.

Ah, yes, life can be sweet.

Tabby Cat

P.S. Remember, I can only get the good cat food if you buy Cat's books. Check them out at

Thursday, January 6, 2011

What a feline wants ...

Greetings in this new year from Tabby, Cat's cat.
Since Cat seems inclined to write books, muttering about deadlines, instead of Important Things, I have volunteered to become her blogger. I will, of course, tell her about this eventually. In the meantime, mum's the word, okay?
What qualifies me to serve as her voice to you, her adoring fans?
I am a cat. Nuff said.
What, you want more. Fine then.
While modesty forces me to stop just short of declaring myself her muse, consider this: When she is at the keyboard, I am perched on her printer, only feet away. When she pauses, I glare at her. On occasion, when minutes go by without the sound of keys being hit, I actually lower myself to speak to her.
You'd be amazed by what a well-placed "Meow!" can do.
I hope by now you've purchased and read her fabulous "Kentucky Blues." I've read the reviews of the book, and while critics praise it, I am disturbed by one glaring omission:
No one mentions the cat!

Unfortunately, her newest novel, "No Safe Place," doesn't have a cat in it. I've read some blah-blah about it in reviews, about how wonderful the characters are and how the suspense is exciting, but here's the real scoop:
Cat's heroine works at a diner!
I must say, every time I sneaks to the computer after she foes to bed to proof-read her work, I look to see if she mentions food. It's thrilling to read about meatloaf and chocolate cake and all those wonderful things she makes for herself and selfishly refuses to share with me.
(An aside here -- the dog gets bites, while I'm forced to survive on dry food because I refuse to sit like a fool at her feet and beg. That's the price I pay, I suppose, for keeping my dignity.)
Now that I've made your acquaintance, I hope you'll come back from time to time for a cat's eye view of Cat's life. And do be sure to drop by to see what's happening at her publisher's, and remember, you can buy her books in e-book or print wherever such things are sold.
Which is NOT where you can also buy toy mice -- I've already checked.