Saturday, May 20, 2006


Remember what I said about cat vacuums? No, not an appliance to vacuum your cat (though that's a darn fine idea) but the fact that the universe knows when you have insufficient cats in your house and provides new ones to take up the slack. Well, its happening again.

Once we were a three-cat household - Rogue, Longshot, and Emily. Both Longshot and Rogue passed on, and we thought we would let Emily be an only cat for a while (she was a hot-tempered calico). Then Brainstormfront moved back to Wisconsin, and we gained two more cats - Harlequin (Harley) and Victoria (Vicky). So we were back up to three.

And then Emily passed on, and we were fairly comfortable with a two-cat household, particularly since Vic and Harl were used to each other. Then, on Tuesday, our friend Charles called. He and his wife Tammy and two kids were relocating to England for a new job. They had thought they had done everything in a timely manner to arrange for their cat to come with them. Well, there were some hitches, and the soonest the cat can join them is August. And their plans to have the cat stay with relatives back east fell through. So they were looking for someone locally who could take in a cat for a few months.

And we become a three-cat household again.

The new cat's name is officially Sparks, since she was found as a kitten during a lightning storm. But soon she gained the unnofficial name Gozer, as in Gozer the Gozerian from Ghostbusters. And, yeah, looking into her kitty eyes, she looks like the kind of cat that would be summoning Elder Gods in the basement when you're sleeping (By comparison, Harley looks like she is thinking of her next meal, and Vic like she has ALREADY conquered the world, thank you very much). Gozer is a tortoise-shell tabby with just a spot of calico, her medium length hair has a silvery sheen to it.

Every cat is different in my experience, and Gozer has already surprised us. She's a climber and an explorer. We put her in the laundry/furnace room the first day, and she immediately climbed into the most inaccessible spot in the room, on top of the furnace ductwork, a spot she could only reach by crossing the ceiling on half-inch wide pipes. Now, there is a small space in the far corner of the ceiling where she could conceivably get under the house itself, if she swings under two more sets of pipes and squeezes through a two-inch opening. So we aren't keeping Gozer in the laundry room anymore - just to be safe.

Relations with the other cats are slow and ongoing. Vicky doesn't like the new arrival one bit, and as I write this, the two are on either side of my feet, growling in low tones at each other. If my ankles get shredded before I finish this entry, I'll tell you. Harley is curious but unconcerned, as Gozer is not bringing her food. Both Harley and Vic are larger than Gozer, but Goze still has her front claws. In addition to her tendency to get onto the ductwork, Gozer likes to perch on the backs of chairs, chase the light-pen dot across the floors, and hates harmonicas (I only know this from Charles' report, and have yet to try it myself). She sleeps like a rock, her legs a tangle underneath her, and she rises at dawn, which is currently 5 AM up here, which delights the Lovely Bride to no end.

So we are back to three cats, at least for the moment, and are dealing with the uneven settling process of cats determining their place in our reshuffled pride. I'm good with is as long as they realize that I am one of the pride leaders (hanging out with the Lovely Bride, or as the cats call her, the Food Goddess). So there will be some growling in the immediate future (and only some of it from the Lovely Bride being woken up at 5 AM)

More later,