Category Archives: Attempt at humor

Conundrum

When I last posted, we were wondering what poor Obi would do about belly rubs now that the quilt is off the floor. At lunch time he had tried to talk The Boy into going into the fort with him.

That didn’t happen.

So what did the brown kitten do for his after work belly rub? Did he…

A) Do a belly flop onto the fort to collapse the whole thing?

B) Decide to get his belly rub on the quilt, now wadded up in a pile on the couch?

C) Decide that a piece of brown packing paper on the other side of the room was the proper place for belly rubbing.

D) Try really hard to find belly rubs on the basement carpet satisfying.

The answer is…E) all of the above.

Tuesday was a horrible night for Obi as he tried desperately to get a decent belly rub. None of these options worked for him. Two days later there is still no solution.

To make matters worse, he REALLY likes the fort. He plays in it all day.

Life is so hard for an abused brown kitten.

I suggested, while The Boy and Obi were trying to complete a morning belly rub today, that maybe he should just get his belly rubbed right there on the rug where it used to happen. Obi glared at me and walked away.

The Boy pointed out that Obi has never liked this rug. It was the old rug that was the belly rubbing rug.

Oh.

Poor abused brown kitten. The Boy giveth and The Girl taketh away.

Fort Folly

Not fooled by the nice weather that allowed me to drink a beer, barefooted, on the porch yesterday, I’ve been worrying about removing Obi’s cave from the end of the couch. You see, in the winter we think the cave is a blanket that should keep us warm.

Since he has started having his belly rubs on the quilt, rather than the rug, it is in serious need of a trip through the washing machine.

To ease the transition, I removed the cave at lunch time. Kitten Thunder and I then built a new fort.

Fort

This went over very well. It took a minute for Oliver to realize that he can’t walk ON the fort. We’ll see how long he remembers that. But once I put him inside, he was good.

Obi was a little reluctant to share the fort. The cave was a one cat deal. Oliver didn’t even like to be in the cave. But the fort is bigger and they learned to adapt – it has two boxes and at least a dozen toys in it, after all.

Then The Boy came home. Two kittehs met him at the door and then ran to the fort. “See what we built!”

But then there was a problem: where was the quilt for Obi’s belly rub?

Obi ran inside the fort and we heard him plunk to the floor. But The Boy is too big for the fort. At least that’s what he says…it’s not like he tried to get in or anything. The Boy is funny like that. Especially when he’s wearing work clothes.

So we’ll see what happens tonight. Will Obi go back to the rug? Will he collapse the fort so he can have his belly rubbed in the preferred location, two feet closer to the window? Stay tuned for updates.

***

In other news, Friskies has a genius business plan that involves schmucks like me liking and sharing their videos for free. Kitten Thunder loves Friskies! In fact, it’s the only brand Oliver will eat – he refused from kittendom to eat the expensive brand that shall go unnamed. They should totally be the next spokescats.

Meanwhile, these are hilarious.

The Least They Could Do

A note from Oliver:

My Girl has been very busy lately. I don’t like that. Her job is to be here with me. She’s supposed to snuggle me and pet me and feed me. And she can do the same things for Obi too, if she really wants to.

But that’s all the sharing I should have to do.

Sometimes she comes home and she smells like dog. Dogs are gross. But, honestly, I prefer that she pet dogs more than other cats. She’s my Girl. Poco did all her training and gave My Girl to me when I was a kitten.

Other cats should get their own girl. Or a boy. The Boy is pretty decent if you can’t have My Girl. Obi actually seems to prefer The Boy.

The Girl says every cat should have their own people and that’s why she leaves the house sometimes. She says she’s helping the place where they keep brothers – the place where she got Obi so he could be my brother.

She says that we are bored. Or something. I don’t know what that means, but I like the present the sent me to thank me for lending them My Girl. It’s great when it is warm from the dryer.

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It’s even better when she wears it.

No Mo Snow

Ah, Wyoming. Where it snows at least once every September. Always. In spite of this being a fact and required by the laws of nature, it always catches us by surprise when the severe weather announcements start.

And we try to deny that is happening.

Which is why it was 40 degrees and raining a fat drizzle on Thursday afternoon when I started the desperate process of bringing plants in from the cold. My pepper plant and eggplant have just started making fruit (remember the hail storm in late June?) so I’m glad they are in pots.

Obi is glad, too.

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He’s been asked not to sit in the parsley this year. Nobody said anything about the oregano.

Cliffhanger

The Boy has made exciting progress in the basement. Now we have an actual door-shaped hole in the wall of the laundry room. For months, I have had to continue walking around the basement to use the old door or duck through the small hole in the wall. Of course I was always wearing dark jeans whenever I lost my balance and touched the chalky edges of the hole. So I very much like the bigger hole. Kitten Thunder thinks it is less fun this way.

The other day, I went to walk through the new hole in the wall and found Obi hanging by two fingers from a wire from the ceiling. Then he fell to the floor, thumping against the washing machine on his way down. I followed him out to the hallway and subjected him to an inspection. No cuts. No sore spots. Just a mad kitten.

I attempted to scold him for his behavior. He flicked his tail at me as he strolled up the stairs.

As if world champion rock climbers don’t fall down if their mother walks into the room and screams about it.

Sheesh.

***

On Friday, the brown kitten was feeling compelled to get into the ceiling again. I thought I had him talked out of it and left him in the window while I finished getting dressed. Then I heard the big noise. It was a weird noise.

I paused. I listened.

Obi cried.

I rushed over to the hole in the wall and immediately noticed the piece of wood across the doorway. Obi was sitting on the washing machine looking angry.

He’d decided to jump for the ceiling where The Boy had run the new lights for the spare room. Neither the trim along the ceiling, nor the vertical stud on which it had been sitting, were attached to the wall all that well. Certainly not well enough to support a ten pound kitten with velocity. The Boy said – when he got home and I showed him what the kitten had done – that he hadn’t thought that would be a problem for one day. He was wrong. Obviously.

Obi does not approve of shoddy workmanship.

Especially if it makes it look like the brown kitten didn’t make his jump.

Bad Boy.

Neglective

A note from Obi:

Our purrsons did the following things this weekend:

– refinished a dresser
– dry walled the laundry room
– trimmed the plum tree
– started framing a door
– manned the registration desk at a conference
– went to train club
– layout for the weekly edition of Tidbits

You’ll notice, if you are a good purrson, that there are two things missing from this list:

– adequately snuggle with Oliver
– adequately entertain Obi

Seriously, this is a problem. I mean, yes, The Girl did snuggle with Oliver last night during the movie and for a couple hours after The Boy got up this morning. And an hour after she got up. And yes, The Boy did rub my belly ten times or so during the weekend and play with me on the rubbing rug. And sure, The Girl found Funky Chicken for me. And I laid on her lap a couple times.

But it was all just an afterthought between all that stuff they did. The called it “productive.”

I call it neglective.

I’m out,
Obi Wan Kittenobi

***

Here’s a picture of Obi giving us a hard, disapproving stare from the laundry room window as we worked in the garage.

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By late afternoon, Kitten Thunder was supervising from the cat shelf.

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A Cry for Help

Kitten Thunder knew the day was going to be bad when I started ironing clothes while The Boy was brushing his teeth. You see, I don’t iron my tank tops and jeans. So I was doing the unthinkable: I was preparing to leave the house.

Kitten Thunder did not approve.

Oliver decided to handle it by going missing. He has found a hiding place somewhere in the house for his morning nap. I’ve got no idea where it is. I’ve looked every morning this week.

Obi followed me to the basement to help me get ready. He talked to me for a while from the chair outside the bathroom. Then his meows were further away.

And more urgent.

I went to see where he was and found him in the cutout in the wall to the laundry room. “I am going to get into the ceiling,” he said. I went back into the bathroom.

The cries came again with a hint of panic and I went to see what was wrong. The brown kitten was sitting on the dryer. “I am going to get into the ceiling,” he said.

“Obi,” I said. “I have a meeting. Please don’t make me send a text that says ‘kitten in the ceiling, may be late.'” He walked over to the washing machine and looked back at me.

“I am going to get into the ceiling.”

He sat down, so I continued to get dressed. Just as I finished, the cries from the laundry room became urgent. Panicked. Scared.

I ducked through the hole to the laundry room to find Obi up on the framework, right by the opening into the ceiling where he got stuck a couple weeks ago.

“I’M GOING TO GET IN THE CEILING!” he cried. “I have to. I AM COMPELLED BY FORCES BEYOND MY POWER!”

It was clear that he did not actually want to be in the ceiling, but that he needed me to intervene. So I reached up and plucked him from the framework. As I carried him up the stairs, the brown kitten head butted my chin and started to purr.

“Thank you, Girl.”

***

What does a kitten do after a near miss like that? He takes a nap on the desk – in his working box – of course.

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Kitten Thunder Workout, Revisited

Very shortly after starting this blog, I wrote instructions on how to work out. I realized that it needed updating. After all, the cats…and I…are three years older. Updates will be noted in red.

Step 1: Cardio
Get a glass of water, fiddle with your hair and do all the stuff one must do to put off actually starting cardio. Sit at the recumbent bike. Find a properly distracting movie on Netflix. Sigh. Actually begin cardio. After about five minutes, Obi will arrive in the basement to see what you are doing. Try to maintain smooth pedaling motions AND try not to kick Obi in the head as he attempts to sniff your feet.

Step 2: Squats
After approximately thirty minutes on the bike, or until Obi has stuck his face in your water glass and forced you to run up to the kitchen for a fresh glass, run through your squats routine. This involves four types of squat of varying difficulty, using different muscle groups. The most important move is the pick up the brown kitten weaving between your feet. Use him as extra weight and kiss his ears until he insists on being set down. Repeat this move five more times as every time you set him down, Obi will ask to be picked up again.

Step 3: Sit Ups
Find space on the floor for sit ups and weight training. Make sure you are using good form for your sit ups with your lower back pressed firmly to the floor. Try not to lift with your neck while Oliver, who followed you down from the second trip to the kitchen, lends his 14 pounds to resistance by sitting on your chest. Continue repetitions until Oliver bites you on the nose or lunges from your chest with enough force to pop your sternum. If you feel you can continue after he leaves, try a couple of repetitions of twisting sit ups.

Step 4: Weights
Select a set of dumbbells that are heavy enough to make you wonder whether they will actually break your skull if you drop them on your head. I find ten pound weights work well for this. Start with dumbbell flys – with your palms facing together in front of your face, lower the weights slowly out to your sides. Attempt to keep the weights at even heights even though Obi is now laying under one arm and grabbing at your wrist whenever it comes near. Repeat until he actually catches your arm. Try not to drop the ten pound weight on the ten pound cat as he bunny kicks your hand.

Stop working out to rub Obi’s belly to see if that will get him to behave. Refuse his demand to go up to the belly rubbing quilt. Insist that the carper is FINE for a belly rub. Suggest he go find The Boy.

Move on to presses. If Oliver’s return to your chest still allows movement, you can lift your shoulders off the ground to engage your core muscles. Repeat until chin becomes raw from being licked by Oliver, or until a Thunder originates at your point on the floor. If you can anticipate the Thunder, it is advisable to get off the floor quickly. This movement can be counted toward your cardio.

Step 5: Planks
Braced on your toes and forearms, hold your body rigid with your back and legs flat. Kiss the kitten who crawls between your face and the floor. Start to tremble. Remember to breathe. Kiss the kitten as he crawls back the way he came. Tremble uncontrollably and release your pose to the floor for a ten second break. Feel two cats climb onto your back. Decide this is nicer than planking.

Step 6: You’ve done enough, right?
At this point, you are ready to give up on the workout. Rationalize that you’ve been in the basement for an hour, which is how long you planned to exercise.

Call it good.

***

Cats and videos go together like peas and honey. Or peanut butter and pickles. Or…something. Check out these videos from people who can relate to my exercise routine.

By the way, “skullcrushers” is a little bit too apt a name for that move.

Weathering the Storm

If you’ve been following the laundry room saga, you know that things didn’t turn out as simple as just popping a door in the wall so we could have a hallway directly from the bottom of the stairs to the spare room. The Boy is an engineer and he can not close his eyes to things done poorly.

So walls came out.

Plumbing has been changed out.

Electricity has been rerun.

This past week, The Boy put in insulation and framed in a new wall. We’re going to gain about six inches in that room by doing things right. BUT. Kitten Thunder does not like all the noise. They are completely over this bit of renovation.

Since they weren’t going to help The Boy, the kittehs were helping me take a nap this afternoon. I’d drifted off on the couch with a grey kitten in my arms and a brown kitten enjoying his own nap on the loveseat. And then…ALARMS!!! I woke up to my phone, The Boy’s work phone, and his personal phone screaming from less than three feet from my head. I managed to read “tornado warning,” grabbed Obi off the loveseat and told Oli to follow me. Which he did. To the top of the stairs.

The Boy was working in the laundry room and they wanted NO part of that.

Their refusal to go downstairs with me gave me enough time to realize that the alarm is not a siren. No need to go to the basement anyway. So I set Obi down and went upstairs to put in my contacts and brush my teeth. And then, SIREN.

Kitten Thunder was in The Boy’s office. I grabbed Oliver and told Obi to follow me. Nope. The Boy was walking up the stairs and I told him that the brown kitten had run into the living room. I heard them arguing about whether everyone had to go into the basement. The Boy won and appeared at the top of the stairs with a mad kitten in his arms.

The cats are both Cheyenne natives. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before – Cheyennites are weather fanatics. After the 2011 storm that wrecked my car, Facebook was full of pictures of cuts and bruises from people that were out looking at the sky when the hail started. And so…

TornadoTV. Obi watched the lower Jeff Channel.

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Oliver watched from the lower Lilac Bush Channel, where they generally watch Doves Eating Seeds.

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After there was no tornado to be seen, Oliver decided to inspect The Boy’s building abilities by using this water tower as a chin scratcher.

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The sirens stopped and the warning expired just as The Boy ran out of things to keep his interest and went back to the laundry room. I set Kitten Thunder free and went to check out the damage.

There was some high powered, horizontal precipitation. The puddle in our bathroom  came all the way to the hall.

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We got several inches of marble-sized hail at our house. The tomatoes were on the right side of the house for once. I’m giving up on ever growing zucchini.

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20140713_140947As I was taking this picture, a big pit bull came running up the walk toward me. She was very excited about being free. I talked to her for a couple minutes until her frantic owner, whose fence blew over, came down the alley.

Oh! And then this happened.

EMT

Because whenever our tornado siren goes off, we immediately also get a flash flood warning…thunderstorms, you know. A local posted this picture of EMT Brian Mills pulling a raccoon out of the flood water. After this, he wrapped it up in a towel and held it for a while – which is a step past what even I would do for a wild critter. What a guy.

Oliver just walked in to my office. Weren’t we taking a nap?

OutTV Expansion

You know how your cable provider is always adding new channels of quality programming without increasing the cost? Yeah, me neither. But The Boy is better than the cable company. Last week, Obi was eager to show me what he and The Boy had done in the laundry room.

He started low, to build suspense. He really likes the climbing wall that The Boy exposed.

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But look! A NEW channel of OutTV! We’re not exactly sure why they covered this window with a wall. Obi very much enjoys sitting on that piece of wood, where he can rest while watching the new channel.

He was certain The Boy would leave it there.

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Because why would you mess with such an awesome climbing wall?

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While Obi was showing me this, The Boy brought down some insulation. And Oliver watched from a safe distance.

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Right after this, The Boy got the thumbs up from me and took out the climbing wall. Obi is mad. But he’ll be happy in the long run – a new window and a very deep sill are in the works.