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Caturday 92

Posted on January 12th, 2019

Dave!Ever since Jake got home from his week-long stay at the vet, he's been more clingy than usual. He also doesn't want to be left alone. If Jenny follows me upstairs while he's asleep, he'll wander around crying when he wakes up until I holler down for him.

This has been tough of Jenny, who likes her independence.

I've tried to make sure that everywhere there's a bed she likes to sleep in, there's a second bed for Jake. This was a little confusing for her at first...

Dueling Cat Beds

But it actually ended up working...

Dueling Cat Beds

For a minute or two. Then Jake was right back to crowding in on her...

Dueling Cat Beds

Needless to say, she isn't thrilled...

Dueling Cat Beds

After a while Jenny escapes, leaving poor Jake alone again...

Dueling Cat Beds

Every once in a while Jenny does a bit of rearranging, which kinda works...

Dueling Cat Beds

But the minute things are back to the way they were, Jake wants to share again...

Dueling Cat Beds

Dueling Cat Beds

It's been three months since the vet, so I can only guess Jake's behavior change is here to stay.

How this is going to affect Jenny's behavior remains to be seen.

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A Clean Place to Poop

Posted on January 10th, 2019

Dave!Last month I was reading through one of the dozens of "Little Things You Can Do to Save The Planet" type articles I found online. In the list was the idea to wear clothes more than once before washing. At first I dismissed it out-of-hand. I'm not wearing dirty clothes! I don't even wear dirty clothes when I travel! And it's true. I bring more than enough clothes to make sure I can change every day.

But then I got to thinking...

Most days I wake up, take a shower, put on a pair of jeans, go to work, then come home and change into a pair of sweats after tossing my jeans in the hamper. Which means I wear the jeans for 8 hours in a clean environment and then waste water, energy, and detergent washing something that's not dirty.

And so... for a month now I've been coming home and hanging my jeans on a different color hanger so I can wear them a second time later on. Easy.

And since it was so easy, I decided to revisit the list and see what else I might be able to do.

It looks like my next step will be trying a biodegradable cat litter. I didn't realize that the clay litter I was using doesn't biodegrade.

Hopefully my cats will use it. Because something tells me that they really don't care about saving the planet...

Jake

They do care about having a clean place to poop. And I would just as soon have it not be my floors.

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The Catio Murder

Posted on January 9th, 2019

Dave!There are two reasons I decided that Jake and Jenny were going to be indoor-only cats. The first reason was to protect them. I don't want them attacked by dogs... run over by a car... or hurt by some heinous excuse for a human being. No, for my peace of mind and their safety, they are staying indoors.

The second reason was to save the poor birds, mice, and other critters that cats seem to relish torturing.

That being said, I really didn't want to deny my cats access to the outdoors. There's too many interesting things to look at (and even more interesting things to smell) which can help make their lives more exciting than if they were trapped inside all the time. and so... I built a "catio" for them so they can go out when they feel like it. Jake and Jenny love the catio... especially in Spring and Summer when they are out there all day lounging around.

Unfortunately, an occasional bird wanders into the catio. It's happened twice. The first time I was able to build a tunnel to shoo the poor thing outside. The second time I managed to rescue it and get it un-stunned so it could fly off.

Then yesterday it happened a third time. Unfortunately I wasn't home to rescue the poor thing, so I came home to a dead bird yesterday...

Poor Dead Bird

I had no idea which of my cats were responsible. My money was on Jake. He was the one who caught the birds the other two times. So I check the security cameras and, sure enough...

Jake sure can move like lightning when he wants to!

A part of me wants to add a fence screen to the bottom foot of the catio to hopefully prevent birds from hopping in. But then I worry that if a bird comes in from above and wants to get out, a screen might make that tough. And so... since it has only happened three times in three years (with only one fatality), maybe I should just hope it continues to be a rare event and leave well enough alone.

Having to disinfect my home because the cats bring in dead birds is no fun at all. I mean just look at Jake going nuts and tossing that poor bird carcass around...

Bring on the Pine-Sol.

And not just for dead birds.

Tonight Jake threw up his dinner.

This is scary and worrisome to me. I'm hopeful that he somehow ate a shred of cheese from my pizza to make him vomit. Because the alternative could be that he's got urinary problems again. The first time was such a horrible ordeal for the little guy that I am in no hurry to go through that again.

And I'm sure Jake would agree.

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Caturday 91

Posted on January 5th, 2019

Dave!For the longest time after I got Jake and Jenny, they were completely silent. They didn't meow at me or try to communicate at all. I, on the other hand, talked to them all the time.

Then Jenny started talking back. Jake tried to talk back, but he can't meow for some reason (unless he's stressed out, apparently). He kinda squawks a bit though. Especially if I look in his direction and he wants to be petted. Jenny mostly wants kitty treats when she meows.

They don't talk to each other at all. They chase each other around from time to time, however. Otherwise they just kinda work around each other. Sometimes literally.

Jenny was sitting directly in front of the cat door looking at something outside. Jake then decides HE wants to look outside, but he can't see around his sister. He tries one side... then the other side... then goes back to the other side. And still can't see out. He was not happy...

Jake Trying to Look Past Jenny

Finally he figures out that if he twists his head, he can look past her...

Jake Trying to Look Past Jenny

He looked outside sideways for several minutes until Jenny got bored and left.

Jenny gets bored easily. Which is why I think she likes watching television so much. Her favorite thing to watch is Rick and Morty. But I was re-watching Isle of Dogs recently and she was totally absorbed...

Jenny Watches Television

After a while she decided she wanted to sit next to me while watching the movie, which is what she usually does...

Jenny Watches Television

She's too adorable, even if she has a couple floopy whiskers...

Jenny Watches Television

She's even more adorable when she decides that the drawstrings on my favorite hoodie are more entertaining than what's on television. It only cost me $100 and I had to fly to the bottom of the earth to get it... but please do chew on my Hard Rock Ushuaia hoodie. It's fine...

Jenny Chews on My Favorite Hoodie

Jenny Chews on My Favorite Hoodie

Jenny Chews on My Favorite Hoodie

Jake never wants to sit and watch television with me. He just climbs on my lap and falls asleep. He does like my computer to scratch his face though. They both do...

Jake Scratches His Face on My Laptop

Jake Scratches His Face on My Laptop

With the exception of my hoodie strings, my cats are surprisingly great about not chewing on stuff they shouldn't be chewing on. They are happy to chew on their toys when they feel the need. Assuming they let each other.

After dinner one day this past week, Jake was laying on the floor gnawing on Mufasa. Jenny comes bolting through the room, snatches Mufasa, then goes running to the stairs.

"JENNY! Why are you stealing your brother's toy?" I ask. She then drops the toy, runs up the stairs, and glares at me. I grab my iPhone to capture the moment, at which time she looks away and whistles. Or appears to be whistling. Can cats whistle? I dunno. So guilty!

Jenny Steals Mufasa

Jake wasn't too bothered. A minute later he went out in the catio because he saw Fake Jake walk by.

Fickle kitteh.

See you next Caturday!

   

New Year, New Day

Posted on January 1st, 2019

Dave!Happy New Year's Day! Happy 2019!

I'm doing really well this morning since I decided to stay home and hang out with my cats instead of going out and drinking my weight in alcohol last night.

All was going well until the fireworks started blasting around 7:00pm. Jenny, who is usually the biggest scaredy cat over the smallest thing did surprisingly well. She was shocked at first, hid under the bed for a while, but was pretty much ignoring the noise an hour later. Jake, on the other hand, was scared out of his furry little mind. I was able to lure him out from under the bed with treats, but he was on edge the whole night and would be terrified whenever more fireworks would start banging.

Rather than be afraid alone, he decided to try and squeeze in next to Jenny on the coffee table cat bed where she had set up camp...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
Jenny wouldn't budge, so Jake finally just shoved her out of the way...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
Jenny was not at all happy about this. So she tried smacking him on the head to get him to leave...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
When that didn't work, she decided biting him on the ear might be the answer...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
Finally she decided to just squeeze in next to Jake like he had tried to do to her...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
It kinda(?) worked...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
I thought maybe she had succeeded in forcing him out just like he had forced her out...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
But he was just getting re-situated and wasn't planning on going anywhere...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
And so... they ended up sharing...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
Which Jenny was not happy about because she couldn't get comfortable...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
Finally she flipped around, which was just the ticket. Jake was happy to have something to hang onto since the fireworks were still going on...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
But eventually Jenny was tired of being crowded and decided to find someplace else to ride out the firework noise. Jake looked a little depressed after she left...

Jake and Jenny... BED FIGHT!

   
If only cats could just do a couple shots of Jägermeister to make everything better.

Fortunately belly rubs work just as well...

Jake and Jenny... BELLY RUBZ!

Jake and Jenny... BELLY RUBZ!

Jake and Jenny... BELLY RUBZ!

Jake and Jenny... BELLY RUBZ!

But more on that tomorrow...

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Dave18

Posted on December 31st, 2018

Dave!For those who only read one of my posts each year... or anybody wanting a recap of the past year here at Blogography... this post is for you! As customary, I've jettisoned loads of the usual junk so this entry is "mostly crap" instead of the "total crap" they usually are.

As you can imagine, 2018 was the worst year of my life so far. Just surviving it feels like a major accomplishment. All I can do is hope that 2019 is better.


JANUARY

• This year was largely about my cats and the hijinks they got into. So... no change from last year...

Jake the Statue

   
• Found out that Google thinks I look like Ryan Reynolds when I have the right haircut...

Dave Photoshopped to be using a Flowbee hair cutter.


   
FEBRUARY

• Another year, another traumatic trip to the vet for Jake and Jenny...

Vet Visit Two Point Oh

   
• Saw the best movie of 2018: Black Panther.


   
MARCH

• Finally bought into the SONOS smart speaker ecosystem...

Sonos One Speakers


   
APRIL

Said good bye to long-time blogging friend Kelly "Hot Coffee Girl."

   
Took my new macro lens to The Keukenhof in the Netherlands...

Macro Flower

   
Another day of Keukenhof wonderment at macro level...

Macro Bee

   
• Finally made it to lovely Budapest...

Hungarian Parliament Bulding at night in Budapest

Budapest at Night from Buda Castle

   
• Finally made it to lovely Vienna...

Klimt at the Belvedere Palace Museum


   
MAY

• Returned to St. Louis and its Gateway Arch...

Gateway Arch St. Louis

   
• Headed to Jefferson City to hunt ghosts at the old Missouri State Penitentiary with Coal Miner's Granddaughter and the Tennessee Wraith Chasers...

Ghost Hunt Weekend at Missouri State Penitentiary

Ghost Hunt Weekend at Missouri State Penitentiary

Ghost Hunt Weekend at Missouri State Penitentiary

   
• Jake gets a new favorite toy...

Jake and Moose the Mule

   
• Saw another amazing P!NK show in Seattle...

P!NK !!!

   
• Had to rescue another bird from my savage kittehs...

Catio Bird Rescue!

   
• Started organizing my souvenirs from around the world...

XXX


   
JUNE

• Spent my weekend building a flower bed in my front yard...

Flower Bed Construction

   
• Upgraded Jake and Jenny's catio with a ramp and a massive climbing pole...

Catio Pole Installation

   
• Had the worst day of my life when I said good bye to my mom...

Mom and Me

   
• Remembered my many travels with mom...

Travels with Mom

   
• Took a look back and wrote about The Elephant Out the Window...

Mom, Mickey, and Me


   
JULY

• Wrote about finding inspiration amongst the heart-crushing tragedy of dementia...

Travels with Mom

   
Built my cats an indoor feeding station...

Cat Feeding Station!

   
• Another trip to Maine... this time with a torrential flood of rain.


   
AUGUST

• Saw an amazing show by one of my long-time favorite bands, Erasure...

Erasure Seattle 2018


   
SEPTEMBER

• Installed a mesh network with Google WiFi.

   
• Remembered back to the AIDS crisis, which wasn't that long ago.

   
• Flew to Salt Lake City to catch a show by The B-52's, Boy George, and Tom Bailey with Marty from Banal Leakage...

The B-52's

   
Wrote an obituary and buried my mom when her marker finally arrived from the VA...

XXX


   
OCTOBER

• Was gutted when Jake got seriously ill...

Jake Hospital Visit

   
• Had to make a short one-day trip to Hawaii and back...

Oahu North Shore Beach

   
• THE RED SOX WIN THE PENNANT! THE RED SOX WIN THE PENNANT!

Dave Loves the Red Sox!


   
NOVEMBER

• Was forced to remodel my remodel.

   
• Remembered my trip to Antarctica on my one year travelversary...

Neko Harbor, Antarctica


   
DECEMBER

Back to Maine again.

   
Happy birthday, Mom...

Mom Climbing Glaciers in Alaska


   
And there you have it... my 2018 year in review.

Thanks once again to my cats, family, and friends for making life bearable through the not-so-great times.

Here's to a better 2019, everybody.

   

Caturday 90

Posted on December 22nd, 2018

Dave!Jake and Jenny are scared of most everything, with people being number one on the list. It takes them hours before they'll even show themselves when other people are in the house. Days before they'll come close. Minimum a week before anybody new will be able to touch them. I keep hoping that having a steady stream of houseguests will encourage them to be less afraid, but it never happens.

But people aren't the only thing.

Jenny is afraid of movement. Unless I'm moving slowly, any step in her direction sends her running. It has to be her idea to approach me.

That's not Jake at all. Jake will sit right in my path and not budge unless I shoo him out of the way or trip over him.

What Jake is terrified of is... aluminum foil.

If I have a can of cat food that needs to be refrigerated and the lid is in the wash, I have to wait for Jake to finish eating before I grab the box of foil. Just opening the cupboard where the box is stored will make him nervous. If I pull out the box, he will run away. I have to go to the garage to tear off a sheet, because he will run away from that noise no matter where he is.

I'm guessing it's sound-related, because he's never had a box accidentally fall on him or anything like that. He's too busy laying around being handsome to be in that kind of danger...

Jake's Handsome Face

Well... most of the time he's laying around. There are times he runs around like he's on fire though.

When Jake or Jenny is in a hurry, they will charge at the cat door at top speed and smash through it into the catio without hesitation. But when they're not in a hurry, Jake struggles with how to best squeeze past the flap. Jenny is the same. Except Jenny with try to push aside the flap with her paw, where Jake will kind of wedge his face along the side and push on it with his cheek.

I guess the cat door is only a struggle when they have to stop and think about it.

Except right now Jenny thinks it's time for dinner...

Jenny Waiting

And so off I go...

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Artificial Impressions

Posted on December 18th, 2018

Dave!Jenny was no more impressed at all the idiotic artificial drama blowing up the Ink Master season finale than I was. 90% yelling and screaming vs. 10% actual tattooing going on. I can only guess that Oliver Peck and Chris Núñez are getting paid serious money to be associated with this total embarrassment of a show.

Maybe one day there will be a tattoo competition show that dispense with all this bullshit and focuses on actual ink, but apparently that's not tonight...

Jenny Chillin'

Oh well. Yet another reason I'm happy to have a DVR that allows me to fast forward through how terrible television has gotten lately.

   

Caturday 89

Posted on December 15th, 2018

Dave!When I was in my late twenties and into my early thirties, my only goal was to get married and have kids. And while I knew I'd make a great dad, I didn't know about being a good father. How was I going to deal with the pooping and puking and crying and screaming and all the gross stuff that goes along with having a kid?

Then Jake got sick and was puking all over the place and I was so out-of-my-mind worried about his health that I didn't even think about having to clean up the mess. It wasn't even on my radar. And that's when I had an "ah ha!" moment and realized that it would be the same with a human child instead of these fuzzy ones I ended up with after my life goals changed...

Jake and Jenny Pals

Now the last thing I want in my life is kids... but I've adapted well to having cats, so I guess everything turned out as it was meant to.

I was reminded about this (again) when Jake started gnawing away on a slice of cheese pizza I left out while I was taking clothes out of the dryer last night. Then, as expected, he was puking his guts out. No idea how he went from being able to eat anything to having such a severe reaction to dairy, but here we are. Poor guy.

My proximity to a tourist town means I have a steady stream of houseguests... especially from October through December when there's a lot going on there. Up until now it's been one or two people. But last night it was three, which meant I had to convert the cats' bedroom to a second guest bedroom. This was fairly easy because I had the bed frame and mattress already...

Jake in the second guest bedroom

All I had to do was steal an end-table from another room, then pick-up a comforter set from JC Penny which, thanks to a coupon from a wrapper off a chocolate bar they handed me, was darn cheap because it had already been marked down on clearance (how JC Penny can stay in business when they can mark things down so much is a mystery). The comforter I found was perfect and the design was exactly what I needed. When I got home, I found out why I liked it so much. It was the same comforter I had already bought for the first guest bedroom...

XXX

And, just like that, the cats had a second bedroom to claim as their own. Which is only fair, I suppose, since this was their room to begin with...

Jake in the second guest bedroom

A bigger challenge than creating a guest room in a day was figuring out how my cats were going to deal with their space being more invaded than usual.

My guest room is downstairs so, when I have people over, the cats just confine themselves to the upstairs. They have their own bedroom with a litter box and water fountain, and I just serve their meals up there as well. Not a big deal. But this time there was a person staying in their room, so the only place for them to confine themselves to was my bedroom! But it all worked out in the end. They hid while my guests were here, snuck downstairs to goof around while they were sleeping, then everything was back to normal when my guests had left. Easy.

But I still slept with one eye open.

Cats have killed for a lot less than losing their bedroom.

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Caturday 88

Posted on December 8th, 2018

Dave! The day before yesterday was Jake and Jenny's third birthday and it was a day-long celebration. For breakfast they got the horrific stinky sardines that they love so much. For dinner they got even stinkier fish stew plus kitty treats for dessert. I also gave them the two Maine catnip toy presents I bought while I was in Other Portland. So... not a bad day to be my cats.

Though, let's be honest, every day is a good day to be my spoiled kittehs!

Seems like just yesterday they invaded my home...

Jenny & Jake

KITTENS!

Jake!

Jenny!

Which brings us to my favorite photo of Jake and Jenny ever...

Jake and Jenny Kittens!

Adorable, aren't they?

They're just as adorable today... but a bit bigger...

Jake!

Jenny!

Jake and Jenny Waiting

Way back in January I listed my nicknames for my cats. As I was reminiscing over the past three years, I thought to go back and revisit them. Surprisingly, they've changed quite a bit. Though Jake is still "Jakey Bear" 90% of the time, I still mix it up a bit for him. Jenny is almost always "Jenny" and I rarely use nicknames for her anymore. No idea why.

Nicknames for Jake:
Jakey Bear
Sweetie Bear
Pooh Bear
Poo
Poo Head
Poopie Butt
Pooper
Poopernoodle
Pooper Trooper
Super Pooper
Poopinator
My Little Vet Bill
The Six Million Dollar Cat
Thank God I Have Insurance

Nicknames for Jenny:
Jenny Bean
Sweetie Girl
Poo Two

And, on that note, it's their dinner time in three minutes, so I guess I'd better wrap this up. Heaven only knows I wouldn't want to keep them waiting!

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