Archive for the ‘Cats’ Category

Executive time

September 6, 2018

The chair recognizes His Excellency, Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Regiment). Oy, does it ever.

Oh, sure, you can impeach him, maybe even convict.

But you’re gonna need the Army to get him out of that chair. Maybe the Marines, too.

International Cat Day

August 8, 2018

Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Regiment), at ease.

“Today is ‘International Cat Day,’ you say? When is it not?” enquires ’Is Lardship.

He’s not kidding, y’know.

 

Wild kingdom

August 6, 2018

Say hello to my pal Sluggo, who took the scenic route (down the stucco wall) to the yard the other day.

We’ve had a pleasant few days around the ol’ rancheroo, lounging on the back patio with a beverage of an evening, airing the cats, and watching the wildlife (which, unlike cable or even streaming video, is free).

The deer have been sniffing around again, drawn by the neighbors’ apples (they’ve already wiped out our crop). And our hummingbird feeder is attracting quite the crowd —  rufous, broad-tailed, black-chinned and maybe even a calliope. The aerial combat over the sugar water looks like the Battle of Britain. Even the bees are getting involved.

Bigger birds have been on display, too. One great big hawk, either a redtail or ferruginous, sat perched atop a neighbor’s tree for the better part of quite some time the other evening, putting a damper on all the other avian activity. A hawk thinks a bird feeder is a hawk feeder.

Later, what looked like a prairie falcon came out of nowhere and swooped low overhead, perhaps mistaking the Turk for a great big bunny. Nope. “That’s no ordinary rabbit,” as Tim the Enchanter has taught us.

Perhaps the most striking creature we’ve seen all summer was a two-tailed swallowtail butterfly, which found one of our shrubs mesmerizing. I should’ve taken a pic, but I didn’t want to interrupt its snacking.

And then there was Sluggo. Less attractive, perhaps, but he gave me an excuse to try the macro function on the Sony RX100 III.

Besides, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, que no? I ain’t exactly George Clooney myself, as Herself periodically reminds me.

How hot is it?

July 21, 2018

” ‘How hot is it?’ Hey, do I look like Johnny Carson to you?”

No tin roof for this cat.

 

The river of dreams

July 12, 2018

Lately dreams are sliding right out of my brain-pan as I awaken, like eggs from a non-stick skillet.

It’s slightly irksome, on a par with an overzealous server who whisks your plate away before you’ve mopped up the final toothsome tidbits. “Hey, I was still savoring that. …”

I’m pretty sure I’m being entertained as I sleep, but maybe it’s a lowbrow sort of dreaming, like some off-brand Netflix movie you’re trying to describe for a friend.

“It was pretty good. It had whatsisface in it, you know, that guy who’s in everything, and there was that gal from what the hell’s that TV show that never really took off? It wasn’t a rom-com but there weren’t any car chases or fight scenes either. It was based on a book by that dude from Spokane, or is it Reno? You know the one. No, not that one. The other one. Can’t remember the name of it but yeah, it was pretty good.”

Or maybe the dreams are simply being overwhelmed by reality, like the aftermath of an election. Herself is still in Flawduh, taking care of business mom-wise, and so instead of lounging around in the sack of a morning, reviewing the work my subconscious did overnight, I have to get up, feed and water the cats, empty the dishwasher and the litter box, make the coffee, and like that there.

Speaking of cats, ours will be giving me poor marks on Yelp. Herself is generally up and at ’em around 4:30, but in her absence I don’t spring into action until 6. None of us has a job, and we’re not going anywhere fast, so what’s the rush?

Try explaining that to a cat sometime. They have a finely honed sense of justice, which they perceive as “just us.” You can see them mentally counting down the days until you croak of an aneurysm while reading The New York Times and they finally get to eat your lips.

The deer hunter

June 30, 2018

Our new lawn-mowing service.

This little guy materialized in the back yard last evening as Herself and I were enjoying a refreshing beverage on the patio and giving the cats a good airing. Never even saw him hop The Wall.

But Bambi appeared instantly on the radar of Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Force).

His aide-de-camp, Miss Mia Sopaipilla, has always worn a harness when she goes outdoors, and as the interloper arrived she was quartered on the southeast side of the compound, tucked away in the shady remains of the irises, near a favorite scratching stump.

But El Turko was free-ranging it to the northeast, inspecting the perimeter, and he froze, watching the interloper nosh on his lawn, as he had been doing himself just a few moments earlier.

It was something of a moment. We didn’t want to extract His Excellency and risk disturbing the deer at his dinner, the pickings being slim in the foothills. But we didn’t want El Turko to choose the better part of valor, leap The Wall, and beat a strategic retreat to Placitas, either. Until this evening he had only monitored trespassing deer through the stout double-pane windows of the ultra-secure Turkenbunker.

Then abruptly the dilemma resolved itself. The deer turned his back on the Turk — which is almost always a bad idea, as we have learned through bitter and painful experience — and the old soldier charged into battle.

“Santiago!” he may have screamed, but probably not.

Bambi bolted for The Wall, but a heartbeat too late. El Turko gave him a good swat before he cleared it.

Afterward I saw to it that the field marshal had an extra helping of Feline Greenies with the usual spartan rations he permits himself in order to stay in fighting trim. The best defense is a strong offense.

Ever been in a Turkish prison?

June 22, 2018

Kitty porn.

His Excellency, Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Regiment), wants to know what’s all this fuss about putting children in cages.

“Just scratch their ears now and then, keep the food bowl full, and clean that litter box twice a day,” he purrs. “I’ve been a prisoner of love all my life. But then again, I’m a white guy, so your mileage may vary.”

 

Sinko de Turko

May 5, 2018

¿Tengo sed? Claro que si! Haz que llueva, pendejo.

Come the dawn, after a long night’s duty, Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Regiment) likes to refresh himself with a drink from the sink, holiday or no holiday.

And speaking of no holiday, at least one learned sort thinks Cinco de Mayo may be one of them there — created largely to sell beverages, and plenty of them too.

“It’d be like if the Fourth of July were reduced to beer and hot dogs,” said UCLA prof David Hayes-Bautista.

Dude. How long you been on this side of The Wall, ese? I bet you can’t find three gabachos off campus who think the Fourth is about anything else.

 

See ‘Things, nice, why we can’t have’

March 23, 2018

OK, you tell him to get down and see what happens.

Like rain falling on the city

February 17, 2018

The sky is crying.

It was gloomy around here the past couple days, and not just for the obvious reason. The weather finally turned and we got something like a half-inch of rain; a long, steady soaking.

Something seems dreadfully wrong
with this picture.

Even the normally stoic Turk grew unsettled, first spending an unusual amount of time under the bed, and then following me around like bad news.

This morning he was finally back to his routine: yowling outside the bedroom door when he’s decided that I’ve logged enough shuteye; jumping into bed for a brief cuddle; and finally nodding off as the sun crept over the Sandias.

Herself is easing back into business as usual, hitting her workout classes and fencing with the taxman, whose clammy hand is even less welcome in our pockets than usual.

Mia performs her one-cat show “Sit Like a Cat,” based on a poem from the Ted Kooser-Jim Harrison collection “Braided Creek”:

We should
sit like a cat
and wait for the door
to open.

And the unflappable Miss Mia Sopaipilla, who came to us from the same shelter that gave us Mister Boo, continues to provide some much-needed comic relief. The other day it was zazen on my drawing stool; this morning it was mortal combat with a long-forgotten toy mouse.

Me? You’d think I should be chronicling some velo-business for fun and profit, what with CABDA just concluded and Frostbike, NAHBS and 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo ongoing.

But I’m not, so maybe I’ll go for a ride instead.

• Editor’s note: Gassho and deep bows to one and all for your condolences following the passing of Mister Boo. Sifting through the piles of photos and videos depicting the sprightly young Boo of days gone by, and seeing the pleasure his presence provided beyond our own household, helped us remember the good times, bright moments that often fade under the harsher light of day-to-day caregiving.