I came across some old photos today of the three felines that share our home. Like all animals it’s crazy to see how different they are what with all their personality quirks and foibles. They are a source of constant amusement and we laugh at them daily. All three are rescue cats adopted from local shelters.
This is Tweak:
She’s pretty and dainty. By far the best jumper in the house, she’s the aerialist of the cupboards and high places. When she jumps she lands softly and gracefully. She has two different colored eyes as white cats are wont to do, and it’s a very striking effect.
This is Cheney:
We named him that because he’s deaf (as white cats often are), and because he can’t hear himself the noises that come out of his mouth resemble Jon Stewart’s parody of his namesake. Typically though we call him Douche. He’s a very special cat, like missed the bus special, and his personality quirks are plentiful and wide-ranging. He’s Tweaks’ brother, and it’s a small miracle that they did not lose each other in the inner city streets where they were found. He must have been very good at following his sister around and she must have helped him eat and keep away from dangers he can’t hear.
He sleeps face planted into the couch:
Or anywhere for that matter:
His most annoying habit which earned him his new name is his yelling. Every morning around four he gets bored and hungry. To solve this problem he walks into the bedroom and starts braying at the top of his lungs, watching for our reaction the whole time. My significant other is a much heavier sleeper (or pretends to be), so it’s usually up to me to deal with the cat. Over the years we tried a great many things recommended by cat psychologists and our vets. Squirting water turned into a fun game (he hangs out in the shower sometimes). Locking him out of the bedroom turned into hours of pitiful braying at the door (he doesn’t get bored easily). Ignoring him makes sleeping impossible, plus see above. Feeding him is counterproductive and ineffective. So typically I simply hop out of bed grab the cat, toss him into the office and lock both doors – his and ours. Then if I’m lucky I go back to sleep for the last couple of hours. He never gets tired of this routine, it never varies, and even though he will continue yelling at doors and walls in the office, at least we can’t hear him. I checked the internets, and seems like no one else solved this problem either, but that’s okay because there are many ways to make up for his mental deficiencies by laughing at him.
No matter how gently you announce your arrival, he will startle if you approach him while he’s sleeping. Usually he gets a very stunned look on his face like ‘where? what the hell is this? I didn’t order any’ before he realizes he’s still on planet earth, on the same couch he sleeps on so much he wrecked the stuffing in the cushion. It’s always comical. His favorite toy is a laser pointer, and every time he sees one he gets so excited that a snarl comes out of his mouth, he crouches wiggling his bum, and his legs start doing this cartoon scramble and he never really goes anywhere ‘cause the hardwood is too slippery.
He is regal and dumb.
This is Alfie. We named her after Elphaba in Wicked, as it just suited her. She’s a shy cat, meaning she spent her first three months with us deep in the closet. At some point she bravely ventured out skirting the walls of the house, terrified but curious. She’s come a long long ways in the three years that we’ve had her and is starting to hog the bed in her newfound braveness. Alfie is the hardest to photograph as she’s convinced the camera will eat her. She’s a very muscular cat, with short stocky legs and can’t jump to save her life. I’ll never forget the time she really wanted to explore the kitchen counter. She climbed up onto the dining room table, aimed carefully for about ten minutes, carefully calculating the two foot distance she’d have to be in the air and evaluating the pros and cons of this rash decision. Finally she stepped to the edge, took a big leap… and cased the edge of the counter. I don’t think I’ve laughed so hard for a month.
Luckily all our cats have a very low embarrassment quotient. Some animals do something stupid like walk into a wall, and will immediately look around to see if anyone saw, and as you’re doubled over on the couch, begin to vigorously clean themselves. Not these guys. They will not only give you a weird look as you’re gasping for air, but will often repeat the whatever badly-ended attempt they were doing in the first place.
Life with animals – nothing like it.