Friday, May 29, 2009

Kitty TV - Now in High Def!

We have always referred to windows as "Kitty TV", from the earliest days of watching a cat watching the bird feeder. Despite the fact that we have a lovely bay window with a wide sill, our current cats don't seem to spend a lot of time looking out the windows, unless we have the front door open with the glass storm door closed. Then they're down near the action, I guess, so they'll spend a lot of time looking out the door.

The other day I came home and Sheba was by the BACK door (full glass, paned like a French door). You could tell just by her body language that something was very interesting - ears back, body stiff, tip of the tail just twitching. So I very cautiously walked over and peeked out.

There was a chipmunk, not even a foot from the door, sitting, working on an acorn. Completely unconcerned that there was a vicious predator nearby ready to rip his guts out. I don't know if he was unaware of her, or knew that she couldn't get to him. But he was there for a loooong time. "Taunting" came to mind.

The Chipmunk Channel - all prey, all the time. Beats fuzzy mice for keeping indoor cats entertained.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

So Very True

"Knitting folklore says that if you knit a strand of your hair into your work, you will be forever bound to the person who receives that work. In my life, this means that a lot of people are forever bound to my cat."

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Never Not Knitting Calendar 2009

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Fatal Attraction

George (the cat) is irresistibly attracted to curling ribbon.

This is NOT a good thing.

I caught him trying to get an end loose from a spool of it last week. It was tightly wound, with the end tucked in, and he was still working hard at it. I always assumed it was the ends that he found enticing, just as cats will go after the moving end of any string.

No, it appears to be the ribbon itself. Which he eats. And then of course either throws up or poops out - until the day he eats too much and gets his insides all messed up. George, you have an itty bitty kitty brain. Not healthy.

Last night, he chewed through the ribbon on the balloon John got for his birthday. Not the free end, tied to the chair. The part between the balloon and the chair. Under tension. Again, no enticing free end, so, clearly, curling ribbon must become a controlled substance in our house, even more than it has been.

George is jonesing for his fix.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Times, They Are a Changin'

I was listening to the radio yesterday (BBC on NPR, it's always interesting to find out our news from the viewpoint of the rest of the world) when the subject of Michelle Obama came up. I don't even remember the context, but the guest said something I found interesting. She described Michelle as a "strong partner" for Barack, which was good for the U.S.

Do you remember when Bill Clinton was first running for president? After the primaries, when he was the democratic candidate, there were countless comparisons of Barbara Bush and Hillary Clinton. Most of them were unfavorable to Hillary - she was too bossy, too un-ladylike, she would try to be part of the government, we weren't voting for HER, etc. And I believe that Bill even said something to the effect of "getting two for the price of one", implying that she would be part of the policy-making process. This was perceived as a BAD thing by the conservatives, including some Democrats.

Fast forward to 2008. We have another potential First Lady with a law degree, who's practicing as a lawyer. She is clearly an equal partner in her marriage. And yet, this time around, I don't remember hearing one bad comment about Michelle, even during the nastiest parts of the campaign. Perhaps she learned from Hillary's experience and kept her head down (although she was pretty visible). Anyone who thinks that she and Barack are not going to discuss policy and politics is deluding themselves. And yet, her brains were/are a non-issue, and potentially an asset.

Or maybe, just maybe, we've matured as a country. Maybe we can look at a smart woman and not feel threatened, or not feel like she "doesn't know her place." Maybe it's just that Michelle is more stylish than Hillary was at that point (remember the headbands?) and we cut her some slack because she's beautiful? I don't know. But I have tremendous respect for both women. Thank you for showing the world it's okay to be tough and smart and persistent - and female.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Correction, and a bit of soccer

I've realized my cats have AFFECTION deficit disorder. Not attention deficit. My bad.

We actually managed to have a non-rainy only slightly muddy soccer practice for William. And he paid attention to the coach and (mostly) didn't goof around! Wow. You realize this practically guarantees rain on Saturday afternoon for the game. For which I am to bring oranges, so I will be stuck with a bagful of cut oranges which only JC and I will eat. I suppose there are worse fates.

Rachel had soccer practice last night - again, no rain yet for her practices. It was a good practice, highlighted by a scrimmage between her 5th/6th grade team, and Coach Tom's other team of 7th grade girls. Yes, this man coaches three soccer teams (and has 6 kids and a full-time job to boot). Our team and the 7th graders overlap practice times by 30 minutes, at the same field, so yesterday he proposed a scrimmage. The older girls were mildly concerned they might run over the "little" ones. Mmmmm, not a problem. In fairness, we had two more players than they did, but one of their dads played goalie for them. We kicked their, um, behinds. I believe the final score was 3-0 (maybe just 2-0, let's not exaggerate). But our goalie was bored. Suppose they went home and blamed Goalie Dad?

JC also had roller hockey practice at the fartthest away rink. At the same time as Rachel's soccer practice. Last week, with John out of town, I went to the wrong rink and bagged his practice completely when I realized my mistake. This week, everyone got where they were supposed to, but man, I will be hating Thursdays for the rest of the season (fortunately only 6 more weeks).

Here's why:
3-4 pm Algebra tutoring for JC
4:40 pm pick up Rachel from track at school
6:30 - 7:30 pm Rachel soccer practice
6:30 - 7:30 pm JC roller hockey practice (leave at 5:45 to get there in time)
7:30 - 9 pm Ann and John church choir practice

Yes, there's time for dinner, but only just. And I suppose we could quit the church choir, but honestly? It's a bright spot in my week - I feel like it's the only time I'm really challenging myself with something new, and even learning something. So even though we're late, I'm still going.

But I'm not looking for a pity party - I have other weekdays with NO commitments, it just happened to stack on Thursday. Just wanted to let you know there may some moaning about it on occasion.