Saturday, December 31, 2011

Slappy New Year

Today marks the last day of 2011.

The two leggers are all agog at this news.

I am unimpressed.

What is this obsession two leggers have with the passage of time? Why do they feel that beginning approximately six hours from now, the whole world gets a reboot of its hard drive thingy? Everything that has happened in the last 364 days is suddenly irrevocably in the past? Everything that is to come in the next 365 days is suddenly filled with unicorns and granted wishes?

Their optimism amuses me.

It is the same optimism that drives them to accept their furry little masters into their house and then expect these little hell beasts to conform to their lifestyle. They take us home with them and proceed to tell us to not scratch the furniture, not shred the drapes, stay off the counters where they prepare our nourishment, they even expect us to get along with other four leggers in the household. They bring us home with all these noble expectations even though bazillions of scientific studies, experiments and simple common sense have proven that these expectations are completely ungrounded and silly.

Yet, just like when they adopt a cat, the two leggers will wake up tomorrow after a wild night of celebration fully convinced that the next twelve months will bring wealth, health and happiness.

I suspect that there is a defect in their brain thingies.

Perhaps not a defect, but certainly there is evidence that somewhere within their brain thingies there exists a gland, or a node, or perhaps a small organism that is stimulated by a change in the calendar. Maybe it is a side effect of Christmas. It always seems to kick into high gear within a week of Christmas. The gland/node/small organism releases a chemical called "Tohellwithitol" which causes all two leggers gather in large groups, drink copious amounts of alcohol and then watch the talking box thingy until someone drops a ball and sets off fireworks.

If tradition holds, they will then spend the next 52 weeks pining for the "good ole days" of last year.

In my opinion, they should all simply emulate their feline betters.

Enjoy the moment.
Amuse yourself when it suits you.
Allow others to amuse you with their odd behavior.
Do not worry about what tomorrow may bring, it is unwritten and unavoidable.
Do not worry about what happened yesterday, it is written in stone and unchangeable.
Appreciate what you have, but do not fret about what you don't have.
If life gets you down, find a whiny gray tabby and give her a smack. (It is very therapeutic)

And most of all, enjoy the sunbeam while it lasts. It may go away later, but remember, if you keep watching the bay window, it will return.

 To all my minions I wish a very Happy New Year and thank you for a very amusing Old Year.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

In The Words of Jaq

Many of my loyal minions have been writing and requesting more information about the newest addition to my kingdom, Jaq.

At first, I resisted, owing to the fact that this would take effort on my part in an endeavor that benefited me in no way whatsoever.

However, upon further reflection, I have come to the realization that I could satisfy the curiosity of my minions and gain valuable insight into the mind of Jaq by simply delegating the chore to her and allowing her to educate my readers in her own words.  What follows is the story of Jaq, as told by Jaq.

Before I turn over the computer thingy to her however, I must state that what follows are the solely expressed opinions of Jaq and I accept no responsibility for any silly, stupid or squirrel loving expressions contained therein. She relays her story without any fear of retribution on my part. (unless she says something I disagree with, and then either she or Tiger Lily will pay the price for her insubordination.) I also reserve the right to censor, edit, block out, obliterate and burn any subversive statements. If such statements are found, Tiger Lily will be flogged publicly.

And so without further ado, I give you Jaq:

Hi everyone. As His Royal Big Headedness, Master of The Universe, High Poobah of The Whatever, yada yada yada, told you, I am known around here as Jaq. Jaq has not always been my name, I have had three names now. Jaq is just the name that my current human types have given me.

When I was but a wee kitten, I was known as "Goldie". Not a very imaginative name, but my first human type was an adolescent girl named Cyndy. I don't know how old Cyndy was when she brought me home, but she was at that stage that all little girls go through when they become bipolar. They wish to be treated as adults, but with none of the responsibilities that adult human types have. She was okay as far as human types go, with the exception that she enjoyed dressing me in doll clothes and having "tea parties". However, I was well fed and allowed to eat scraps, so the trade off was acceptable.

For three years, I thought this would be my lot in life. I would be "Goldie", she would continue to treat me as her best friend, and we would be together always. But it was not to be. Cyndy's dad was a sailor and they moved often. Every once in a while, large unshaven human types would come to our home and put everything in boxes. They would then load the boxes in a truck and we would all move to a new house in a far away place with strange, new smells. 

It was during one such relocation that I was accidentally left behind.

I wandered for several days through the unfamiliar outside world. This was the first time that I had ever had to worry about where my next meal would come from. When it rained, I sought shelter. When the sun was shining, I found patches of grass to nap in. I quickly learned where the predators lurked and where other cats considered their territory. During this time, I acquired my second name: 

"Svetlana, The Squirrel Worrier"

But it wasn't long before I realized that I was not cut out for this vagabond existence.  Worrying squirrels, while fun and beneficial, did not put tuna in the bowl.

I began to seek a better way of life.

I learned from listening to other animal types that there was a house nearby that accepted and fed almost anything that wandered into its yard. It was mentioned that once, they spent a week attempting to feed a teddy bear that had been blown into their yard by a windstorm. They said this house was ruled by a small tuxedo cat that spent his days scowling in the window and yelling " BOW TO ME, PEASANTS!" every time someone entered his yard. He was often seen in the company of a large orange tabby that was rumored to be "sharp as a spoon".

The house was easy to find. All you had to do was follow the parade of deer, raccoons, marmots, muskrats, moles, voles, birds, goats and the occasional wildebeast to the location. Sure enough, there was the little blue house, set in the woods surrounded by animals of every shape and size. And yes, there in the window was a small, easily annoyed tuxedo cat. 

Upon spotting me, he yelled "Geez! Look over there! Do you not see the bane of my existence?? Go! Irritate that squirrel!" Wanting to ingratiate myself, I did as he bade.  Apparently, this pleased him, because an hour later, he ordered his male human type to feed me. He even made them erect a small structure with a blanket for me to rest in at night. This was fine, but it bothered me that he slept indoors, ordering me around, while I slept outdoors doing his bidding. I needed to change things.

I began to understand that the male human type would do anything for the female human type. Thus I began to ingratiate myself to her. Whenever she exited the house, I would mew plaintively and rub against her legs. I always made sure to act sweet and cute in her presence. My plan soon bore fruit and she began her campaign to bring me inside. 

One day, the male human type came out, caught me and put me in the kitty carrier. I was whisked to the vet where I was pronounced healthy, if a bit malnourished. Upon our return, I was given my own room and a new name: Jaq.

Since that fateful day, I have enjoyed all the benefits of being Cujo's newest minion. 

To the rest of his minions, he may seem a callous, sneaky, vain, narcissistic chaos loving, trouble-making little egomaniac. However, after getting to know him first hand, I assure you of this:

It is all completely true.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Cujo Christmas Carol

I was awakened from a most curious dream this morning. I shall endeavor to describe it for you.

In this dream, I was much older, approaching the twilight of my life. It was in the evening, the male two legger had just requested that I vacate the couch so that he could spend some time in front of the firebox thingy and thaw out after taking the royal leavings from the royal litterbox. I, of course, refused his request and swatted him for his forwardness,

Shortly after the two legger left to go huddle under a tattered blanket in his bedroom, a bell began to toll. Suddenly a glow appeared at the end of the hall. As it neared I realized that it was the female two legger holding a candle thingy in one paw, and the water squirty thingy in the other.

"COOJ! COOJ!" She moaned, "Ye must repent of your evil ways. Ye must stop smacking, clawing and biting everyone ye meet. Ye must atone for your sins and use your remarkably beautiful countenance and your unparalleled intelligence to better the world and its citizens."

I reached out and knocked over the nearest vase to display my complete disregard for her words.

"Oh Cooj, ye know not what ye do." She wailed. (I've no clue why she kept saying "ye" instead of "you") "Before the alarm clock thingy wakens thee, ye shall be visited by three ghost thingies". She then giggled maniacally and ran from the room.

My first reaction upon witnessing this was to ignore her, but upon further reflection, I decided to aggressively ignore her. On the surface, aggressively ignoring someone seems identical to simply ignoring them, but aggressively ignoring someone involves more malice.

As I lay there pondering, I became aware of a presence. On the floor below me I saw Tiger Lily. My smacking paw was already twitching when it occurred to me that she had been gone for many years. Was this one of the spook thingies that the female had moaned about?


Curious, I decided that instead of smacking her, I would see where this led.

"COOJ, COOJ!" She whined, "You must follow me now". She then poofed and ran down the hallway, disappearing into the gloomy darkness of the guest bedroom.

I followed, but as I entered the bedroom, I found that it was no bedroom at all. I found myself back in the Vet's office. I stood beside Tiger Lily as she pointed at a cage filled with kittens. As we watched, a much younger version of my male two legger walked past us and approached the cage. I swung at him, but my paw passed through his leg as if it was only a shadow. Within the cage, a tiny little tux kitten climbed the side of the cage and took a swipe at the two legger, snagging a claw in his upper thigh.

"This little one shows promise." I whispered to Tiger Lily.

"Does he not look familiar?" whined Tiger Lily. "Continue watching".

The two legger then gave the Vet some money, loaded the handsome little bugger in a kitty carrier, and left.

I blinked my eyes and found myself back on my throne in front of the firebox thingy with the sound of whining fading in the night.

Vowing to lay off the organic catnip, I lay my head down and decided to nap. Once again, I was awakened by the sound of a bell ringing. It was the doorbell. The door flew open and revealed The Stephanie wheeling through the threshhold.

"COOJ, COOJ! Hop upon my lap and allow me to show you something" she spoke unto me. She then pulled out her iPad and changed her Facebook status to "Showing Cujo something- It's Complicated".

We rolled into the dining room where we witnessed the two leggers sitting down to dinner. Their faces were aglow with joy while they feasted on a ham with salad, and one of the bajillion dishes that the male two legger cooks, all of them involving potatoes and cheese. Ivan, Tiger Lily and Jaq were under the table enjoying the crumbs that the two leggers allowed to escape from their plates. Everyone was having a thoroughly delightful time. But then the Stephanie pointed to the sliding door thingy. Crouched beside the glass, staring out into the backyard, cursing the squirrel thingy, was me. I was not participating in the revelries of the aforementioned peasants. I held no truck with celebration whilst the squirrel cavorted totally unmolested in my backyard. Everyone else appeared to be enjoying themselves and the fellowship of each others company, but the crown weighs heavy and I take my duties seriously.

The Stephanie shook her head slowly and whispered "Tsk.....tsk". She then pulled out the laser pointy thingy and pointed it into the living room. I, of course, could not resist the red dot and chased it accordingly. Reaching the living room, I discovered that the scene had changed once again.......

The house was once again quiet and dark. I returned to my throne to ponder what I had just witnessed.

I was just drifting into a nap when once again, a bell began to toll. Okay, not so much a bell ringing as a wine glass breaking. I scampered into the kitchen to investigate. Upon entering the kitchen, I beheld a sight that almost caused my stony little heart to stop. Upon the kitchen counter stood Ivan. He was tangled in a towel and doing his best to appear spooky and all knowing.

He failed miserably on both counts. But I must admit that given the fact that Ivan had met his end in an unfortunate catnip mousie thingy, toilet bowl. and ill-timed flush by the male two legger incident two years earlier, I was somewhat intrigued.

"Boss......I mean COOJ, COOJ!" Ivan stuttered, "You gotta see some stuff." He then ate the last cheese doodle before jumping down and running into the bathroom. As I followed him into the bathroom, the scene changed yet again.

I found myself outside. The two leggers were standing over a hole in the ground. They appeared oddly relieved. In the trees surrounding the clearing, squirrel thingies were dancing and singing, waving tiny flags, obviously celebrating some kind of vermin holiday.

Ivan and I approached the two leggers. The male was beginning to fill the hole with dirt.The female had a single tear in her eye, the male was making sure that whatever he was burying would stay buried. As the male finished filling the hole, topping it off with rocks, a large piece of plywood and finally pouring cement over the disturbed ground, the female laid a small engraved plaque on the very top. They then ran back into the house yelling "Whoopee! It's margarita night!"

Turning back to the plaque, I read the message engraved there:

"Cujo, Gone, But The Scars Remain"

Suddenly, this entire evening made sense. My old minions were trying to tell me something. They had come back to pass on a warning.

Now I knew the true meaning of Christmas.

I awoke on my throne. I ran through the house, waking everyone and calling them to gather in front of the firebox thingy. As they all stood, heads fuzzy with sleep, I told them all of my dream and the message it conveyed. I then approached each and every one of them, my loyal minions.......

And smacked the Dickens outta them.

I'd rather be feared than loved.

It's just the way I am.

Suddenly Jaq jumped up and squeaked: "God bless us everyone!"

I smacked her twice.

To all of my minions, I wish you a very merry and blessed Christmas.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Here Comes Santa Claus (Everyone Look Busy)

Some of my minions, (You know who you are) have been requesting that I venture into poetry once again. Okay, you asked for it, do not blame me for the results.

Twas the week before Christmas,
Not a sound to be heard.
'Cept Ivan in the window,
Being teased by a bird.

The tree thingy was decorated,
By the two leggers with great care.
In the misguided belief,
That the ornaments I'd spare.

Tiger Lily and Jaq,
Lay asleep on their beds,
I consider waking them,
And smacking their heads.

But for now I leave them snoozing,
I've bigger fish to fry.
That big jolly two legger,
I've decided must die.

He annoys me every year,
Spreading his message of joy.
Rewarding "good" behavior,
With the treat of a toy

He seems to dislike me,
Down deep in his soul.
All he ever brings me,
Is a large lump of coal.

But what Santa doesn't realize,
What soon will be known,
These large, black rocks he sends me,
Are easily thrown.

So come next Saturday,
Me and Ivan will wait.
As the big fat two legger
Approaches his fate.

We will hide in the tree thingy,
Not making a peep.
Then jump out and ambush
The white bearded creep.

I hope this week he sleeps well,
His rest unencumbered.
Without the least suspicion,
His days on Earth are numbered.

While the two leggers slumber,
All snug in their bed,
Ivan and I will be bouncing coal
Off Santa's large head.

Come Christmas morning,
Instead of decking the halls,
I'll be on my throne,
Picking Santa out of my claws.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Kitty Kong

It has always been my belief that a coward dies many deaths, but a brave person dies but once. I have found this to be true, but not dying many deaths is not necessarily exclusive to cowards. It also applies to two other entities:

Catnip mousie thingies...........

 And Christmas trees.

Once again the two leggers have erected their annual act of futility that they call The Christmas Tree. Every year as the wind blows, the temperature drops and the squirrel shivers, the two leggers bring in a large box thingy and begin to erect the one thing on earth that they know we feline types are unable to resist.

They install a tree thingy in my living room, and then expect me not to climb it.

But wait, it gets better.

They then hang highly prized, sparkly, and best of all, FRAGILE thingies all over it.

In a fit of completely unjustified trust they tell me to leave it alone and retire to their bedroom leaving us, the furred residents, with the aforementioned mass of temptation.

While they are at it, they should just fill their shoes with catnip and tell us to stay out of the closet.

I once heard it said that the definition of insanity is the repetition of identical behavior with the expectation of different results. Using this standard, I have determined that my two leggers are certifiably looney, nuts, sanity challenged and furthermore out of their head thingies. Every year they erect this huge cat magnet and expect that it will remain intact until dawn.

It would be sad if it were not so amusing.

Over the years,we have created many games that involve the tree thingy:

Ground the Angel Thingy
Jingle Ball Bash
Icicle Hockey
Elf Neutering
Santa Slam
Light Snacks
And my personal favorite- Hide and Seek and Destroy.

Feeling charitable, I decided to allow Ivan to pick the first game of Tree Season this year.

I was pleasantly surprised when Ivan did not choose the same game he chooses every year, ( Knock the Tree Thingy Over and Eat Everything We Can Until the Two Leggers Squirt Us) instead he opted to make up a whole new game. Before I explain Ivan's new game, I must provide some background.

My male two legger is both a pilot and an aviation nut. Given his obsession with flying machines, he has coerced the female two legger into decorating the tree thingy with lots of miniature airplane ornaments. In the male two leggers mind, Santa's sleigh has wings and a turboprop.

Back to Ivan's new game. After watching a movie on the talking box thingy about a huge mutant monkey whose hobbies include grabbing female two leggers, climbing large buildings and smacking airplanes, Ivan climbed to the top of the tree thingy grabbed the Angel and then began crashing all the airplanes.

It was a thing of beauty. As the rest of us watched, Ivan reenacted the movie to perfection. I only wish the two leggers had been awake to appreciate his attention to detail.

There was only one discrepancy. The big monkey did not eat the head of the two legger at the end.

I like Ivan's ending better.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Stupor Powers

Today was a particularly boring day in my kingdom.

Tiger Lily was hiding, Jaq was sleeping in a rare midwinter sunbeam and Ivan spent most of the day menacing a doorstop.

Finding myself at loose ends, I decided to catch up on some long overdue pondering.

For some time now, it has been my intention to ponder the two leggers obsession with "super powers". I have often noticed that the two leggers spend an inordinate amount of time entertaining themselves with stories about other two leggers that have special powers or talents.

This is just another example of what I have always averred:

Two leggers envy us. Their fondest desire is to be more like us. You doubt me? Let's take a moment and examine these "powers".

Super Strength- A 10lb. cat can knock over a 30 lb. table. (My two leggers will attest to this)

Ability to Leap Tall Objects in a Single Bound- duh.

Super Speed- Ever see Ivan appear when the door thingy to the food closet is rattled? The sonic boom occasionally wakes the neighbors.

Ability to Emit a Noxious Gas That Incapacitates Anyone Within a 10 Tailspan Radius- Once again, I refer to Ivan.

Invisibility- All felines are capable of this, especially when being sought by two leggers attempting to remove them from a room.

Super Hearing- Try opening a tuna can, five miles away while simultaneously listening to a Grateful Dead CD thingy and watching a political debate on the talking box thingy. I promise, you will have at least four cats at your feet in 2.635 seconds. (See also Super Speed)

Mind Control:

Breathing Underwater- Why the heck would we want to breath water? That's for fish thingies.

Debilitating Sound- Tiger Lily's whine can cause mass confusion and hysteria among all intelligent lifeforms. (Ivan is impervious)

Given the aforementioned evidence, it is obvious to me that the two leggers simply dream of being more cat-like.

One last note: Though I see no advantage in breathing water, at my next opportunity, I intend to teach this ability to the squirrel.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Visitation

I  am not amused. 

Earlier tonight I was awakened from my post-afternoon/ pre-evening nap by the back sliding door thingy opening. When I decided to investigate, this is what I beheld:

It appeared to be a representation of a deranged two legger. Though it was a bit creepy, my first inclination was to ignore it. But when I turned my back, it moved.

This went beyond creepy but fell shy of threatening. I decided to resume my nap and leave plotting my revenge against the squirrel thingy for another time. However, when I decided to look at the interloper once more, I discovered its true purpose:

The squirrel thingy seems to be holding a grudge. It would appear that he has taken exception to a few of the things I have said about him in the past. I have no idea why the mangy little tree rat may have been offended, but some vermin are so sensitive.

Sending his little minionette to harm me displays just how cowardly and dishonorable the varmint is. Seriously, using a minion to do your dirty work? Absolutely shameful and despicable.

 So I sent Ivan.

Needless to say, the threat was neutralized with extreme prejudice. After I allowed Ivan to have his fun, I approached and administered the coup de grace.

Believe me, this assassination attempt will not go unanswered.

Sleep lightly squirrel thingy, sleep lightly.

And next time you send something to harm me, please include some gravy. This one was a bit dry.