Sunday, August 19, 2012

Puff Up, You'll Look Bigger

Reposted from June 21st, 2011

So, I'm on Facebook this morning when I came across a video I couldn't resist. I generally don't watch videos people post since there's so many, on a variety of subjects that don't interest me, and I have a ton of stuff I really need to accomplish each day, but just the title of this one made me curious: "Cat gets caught barking by a human and resumes barking". I didn't have a choice. I had to watch.

The video begins with a black cat sitting in an open window, barking to the world. Yes, you heard me right…barking. The owner then comes around to the right side of the feline, who realizes the cat is out of the bag (so to speak) and his ruse is up. As he turns, he gives out a couple of choked bark/meows, almost like “oops, I’ve been caught”, then he starts to do the typical cat thing…he meows.

At this point I’d like to say that I’m laughing so hard I’m wiping tears from my eyes, but I wasn’t that caught up in the video…yet. Before I go on, I need to explain something here. I have five critters that are all rescues. Four cats — Kozi, Candycorn, Snowball, and MewMew — and a dog — Baby — that for years thought she was of the feline persuasion ($1,000 bucks later I finally convinced her that kitty food was not good for her constitution).

The newest addition, MewMew, showed up this last winter, and is barely a year old, much to the consternation of the old farts who prefer lying around as to playing. While I sit at the laptop, she sits on the top of the chest freezer, waiting for me to pay her some attention. This is one of her favorite spots since she can 1) look out the window at the birds and squirrels outside and pretend to stalk them, and 2) stay out of the way of Candycorn, who is still having issues with another female feline in the house and 3) waylay me as I come out of the bathroom (another story).

So anyway, there I am, watching this video, with the volume turned up, and as the cat in the home movie begins to bark, MewMew perks up. The bark goes on for a few more seconds and MewMew is now jumping from the chest freezer to the top of the table, head cocked, hackles raised. Then the kitty on the video does the bark/meow, and MewMew is sniffing at the onboard speakers, trying to figure out where this oddity is coming from. Then movie cat meows like a regular feline. MewMew puffs up, in all her limited glory, and hisses, finally seeing the scene playing out on the screen. She smacks at the image, like that’s going to do any good, and pounces up and down, landing right on my keyboard, which then resets the video to start again. When the video kitty renews barking, MewMew freaks out, proceeds to do “legs running in the same spot but not moving”, and takes off into the interior of the house. Now I have tears running down my face. Here’s the link.
Needless to say, I didn’t see her for over an hour. The other cats, they slept through it all. This is not to say that they don’t have their moments too. They all do. That’s what entertains us humans. Animals and the funny, strange, and adorable things they do.

Like the time Kozi (short for Kamikaze Kitten, which he outgrew over 16 years ago) ran through the house with a plastic grocery bag around his neck, hauling his cookies as if he was being chased by the devil himself. And boxes…
They love boxes. Doesn’t matter if it’s a beer box, soda box, or shipping box. It also doesn’t matter if they can fit in said box or not (which is another story). Kozi and MewMew are the two biggest culprits. Case in point…we recently stocked up on Coronas to help us through massive yard work, two 18-count boxes to be exact. I threw them off to one side of the kitchen until I could throw them out later, one on top of the other. MewMew decided she wanted the top condo, Kozi, with his arthritis, selected the bottom. There was only one problem with this scenario. There’s not a lot of strength to these boxes, especially when laid on their side and weight placed inside of them. So, as MewMew settled into her luxury accommodations for the long haul, her condo began to slide sideways. Now Kozi, being old, it takes a while for him to react to things going on around him. As MewMew’s condo collapsed in its free-fall, it kind of flattened Kozi’s snuggy space. MewMew spilled out onto the floor, glancing around to make sure no one had seen her fall from grace. Kozi, on the other hand, just kind of slunk out of the mess, unruffled and unfazed, not quite sure of what he was doing a minute ago.

Snowball is the celebrity of the bunch. He was the mascot for SUITE Magazine, a small white fluff-ball that all the women loved. He’s still adorable, even though he’s now about seven-years-old. His thing, when he wants attention, is to stand up and put a paw out towards your face, or hand, or anything he can reach, to make sure he’s noticed in some way. His momma, Candycorn, is the bitch of the bunch. Her claim to fame is her extraordinarily long claws. Watching her trying to run across a carpet or rug is hilarious. Because her claws are so long, she can’t retract them enough, and hence, they catch on everything. There’s been many a time when she’s raced after Snowball, only to do an Olympic flip, and land on her back, claws caught, meowing for a rescue, which is so beneath her.
Baby is the dog of the bunch, although she still firmly believes she’s a cat. We have a three-level kitty house and all the cats know the bottom floor belongs to “the dog”. Baby goes in there and scratches, like a cat, with nothing more than her tail end hanging out, intent on her mission. If this wasn’t so cute, it would be almost pathetic, but she has her ways about her. She’s also 17-years-old with congestive heart failure. She has to take medicine twice a day just to keep her quality of life at an acceptable level. But damned if she doesn’t realize her meds are mixed in with her favorite wet food, and somehow finds a way of eating around them.

With Kozi and Baby getting to the end of their days, it’s videos like the one I just watched, that make me appreciate all the good years I’ve given them. I know, there will come a day, very shortly, when I’ll have to make the decision to allow them to pass over that rainbow bridge, but until then…they entertain me in so many way…as most animals do with us humans. Whether it be chasing a laser, chasing a lizard, or chasing a lint ball, I will always have a soft spot in my heart for them.


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