Monday, November 20, 2006

The cat is on to me

For my birthday, Dad sent me a big bouquet of flowers: roses, stargazer lillies, carnations, dasies and others I couldn't identify without a field guide. Mom set them first on the sideboard in the dining room and then moved them to the hall table for the baby shower she hosted this weekend. The kitten has seen several kinds of flowers in vases in her short 6 1/2 months of life: roses, tulips, daisies. But she had never seen anything like the bouquet from Dad before this weekend. The kitten knows very little of the world - her rules of life are based entirely on what she's admonished for (i.e. peeing on the bed) and what she's rewarded for (i.e. not biting me while I clip her nails). One thing she does know about the world is that she's not allowed up on tables. Not the kitchen counters, not the dining room table, not the coffee table, not the hall table. She's been specifically admonished (read: squirted with a water bottle while someone yells, "No!") to stay off each of those surfaces. But the lure of the bouquet was too much for her. A couple of weeks ago, when we had tulips on the hall table, Pete found her batting the already dropping petals off the last intact stem. I was surprised that she didn't go for the kill with the bigger blooms as well, but evidently she had something else in mind. It seems that she just rubbed up against the stargazer lillies a bunch and covered her head in pollen.

I have this theory that cats are born devious. Not curious; devious. And I know how much the kitten loves tearing things apart. Yet she chose to rub pollen all over her face and not shred the - what I would imagine to be extrodinarily appealing - blossoms. I believe that she can sense that I am both allergic to her and to flowers. I think she might be out to get me... If I see her with an apple, or maybe chawing on a strawberry, I'll know she's got my number and she's coming to get me. Lucky for me I still have a few tricks up my sleeve. Like fire: no cat can resist a fire in a fireplace. They are compelled to stare into it until they become drowsy and then flop over and lounge in a semi-catatonic state until the fire dies out.

In other cat-related news, the most recent name choice is Audrey. There are several reasons for this. 1) We originally got her for my Grandma Audrey and if Grandma had liked her and kept her, we wouldn't have her. 2) The kitty is kind of a whiner. And, um, so is gramma. I know! That's terrible! But that's the deal with old people - a deal I'm totally looking forward to. I'm totally a whiner and I'm trying to hold it in so I'll be good and ready for when I'm an old lady. And really, at least she's not cranky. Not like Heidi... 3) It also nicely ties in the whole Capote angle what with our having so much trouble naming the damn thing. Man, I just noticed how much Heidi looks like a toy or someone photoshopped her or something.

It's so funny to watch the two of them go at it because Heidi's at least twice her size, and probably three times her weight. We weighed Heidi about a month before getting the kitten and she weighed about 10 pounds. After we got the kitten, she seemed to be slower and fatter - which seemed improbable as she was already HUGE. She gained a pound and a half in just the first two weeks the kitten was here! Not much for me or you, but that's 15% of her starting body wieght! It would be like a 200 pound man gaining 30 pounds in two weeks! I don't know what she weighs now - she hates being picked up and yowls bloody murder and then tries to murder you whenever you do it, so you have to have the scale on and ready to go, and then scoop her up to have enough time for it to get a reading. And then you have to hope that you didn't lose too much blood for the second Heidiless weighing (for to determine her weight via the magic of subtraction!) to be accurate.

When the cats "decide" to tussle - you can imagine who the typical agressor is (PSST! it's the one with the energy!) - they usually end up "hugging" and gnawing on each other's heads while kicking with their hind legs. The kitten always takes the submissive, lower position, even though she's usually the one starting shit. And she does this thing that is SO hilarious! She waits for a pause in the fight, when they're both just sitting there staring at each other, and she ever so slowing and hesitantly lifts one paw and slowly extends it towards Heidi. She slowly slowly sets it on Heidi's face, usually over one eye or on her nose and cheek below the eye, and just rests it there. Sometimes she "winds up" for this, extending the paw a little ways and then withdrawing about half way, and then again... I'll try to get a picture of it. And I'll try not to become one of those crazy cat ladies who always posts about her cats and talks about them like they're people. But I promise nothing!


Anonymous said...

You know, that's a really good picture of you at the top. The cat, too, but that's an excellent shot of your lower jaw. Just sayin'
When I hear the name Audrey, I think of two things:
1-Audrey Hepburn, one of the most beautiful movie stars ever, and is now being used in a bunch of absolutely wretched and horrible Gap ads where she dances to AC/DC. Bad Gap ads! Bad! i stab you with an unsanitary shiv!
2- The giant carnivorous plant from Little Shop of Horrors.
I guess the cat does have a bunch of Capote/sizable plant stuff going on, so I suppose Audrey would fit.
Man, I want a kitty. Mammals are awesome.

Eric said...

Steph and I keep talking about getting a pet of some kind (maybe both a cat and dog), but it's a lot of work. It's my understanding that we have to feed them and take them outside occasionally. Crazy. I don't know if I can tear myself away from playing through Secret of Mana again long enough to do these sorts of things.

Eric said...

Oh, and is that cat dead in the first picture?

Sydney said...

She's not dead; she's just really unhappy about having her picture taken and being held for more than ten seconds. Which, I guess, is akin to death for a cat.

Sydney said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I paused, momentarily stunned, at the brief mention of clipping the kitty's claws. Such a thought has never even crossed my mind, I think my cat would claw me to shreds! She won't even sit still so I can get her collar back on since we took it off a few months ago.

By the way, our cat is still called Kitty. Maybe cats are just hard to name, as their subtle & mysterious ways defy definition.
p.s. I totally agree w/ the Audrey Hepburn comment, those commercials are horrifying.