Tuesday Morning Press #7: The Importance of the Right Cat Litter

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Tuesday Morning Press #7: The Importance of the Right Cat Litter

I don’t have much time today; less than usual actually, to get this off to bed. My kids were late this morning and then that sets everything off. Then my director sent me an email fearing that I’d keyed in an order wrong and it was shipping to the wrong address: mine. I didn’t – we’re all set. The order is going where it should.

So! Here we are…. how’s your drink?

Did you have a good Thanksgiving? I did. It was really great; Family is tough… I mean, we love all each other, RIGHT?!, but we also tire of each other. It’s hard. Even the beautiful family I’ve created with my husband, my tree, gets on my nerves. Maybe it’s that time of the month. You know: the end of it.

Anyway, we traveled out of town and visited my brother and his family. They are always amazing hosts and I try to be a good guest, helpful, out of the way as much as possible but also able to pinch hit at a moment’s notice. Thanksgiving dinner is a big deal no matter what you’re having, it seems. There’s that whole, “be thankful” thing.

Our travels meant we had to trust our cats. I have been known to post on my Twitter feed or in a comment string the following: “My cat’s a dick.” I have borrowed hijacked the phrase from a dear friends’ husband whose wit knows no bounds. They are probably one of the funniest couples I know. I digress. The point is yes, My Cat’s a Dick. Here he is in the background behind my beloved Murphy:

There is nothing warm and cuddly nor the least bit kind and patient about that cat.

That cat, Gandalf, is beautiful, actually. He is a classic gray barn cat. He has a sister, her name is Beezer. Anyway, trusting those cats is a big leap because during the last two weeks, all my mental focus and Mr. GrassOil’s free time has been spent trying to unstink the hell out of our recently installed basement carpeting because apparently, THEY DIDN’T LIKE THE (swear alert) FUCKING KITTY LITTER we provided them.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!

Apparently not.

Look, the irony of humans “having a pet” is not lost on me. Jerry Seinfeld probably stated it best when he talked about dog owners. I’m paraphrasing of course, but it went something like this, “When you think about the ‘Master’ and ‘pet’ dynamic, does it ever occur to you about who’s picking up whose poop? Who’s being pulled around on the leash by whom? Who gets their food no matter what?”

Ouch. But I love my dog.

There’s a line that makes me cringe inside: “Dogs have family, cats have servants.” HAHAHAH! That’s so funny I forgot to laff.

So apparently because we used the wrong kind of kitty litter, we got to spend more money on “Nature’s Miracle: Just for Cats” which comes with a welder’s helmet, chain mail gloves and a hazmat suit. We also tore out the padding beneath (of course) and have turned our beloved movie room / aka: bunker into a demilitarized zone.

I got back at them though: I moved their food to the carpeted area they  . . . used as their toilet. The long and short of it is this: it’s over. The cats are behaving themselves. The only thing is that I can’t tell if it’s that or that we reverted back to the original kitty litter that got them to stop because they don’t talk and expecting them to act like those cute tabbys or calicos on television commercials is OUT of the question. They are dicks. But I still wonder… Did I win?

Ehhhh who am I kidding? It’s the kitty litter. They don’t respect me. They’ve been the masters and commanders of our home since 2005. I was experiencing a moment of weakness because we had to surrender a beautiful rescue golden retriever (that I got from an old man who couldn’t drive away from my house fast enough) because he kept knocking over my children and trying to climb our trees. That dog, “Skipper” was given to me — I KID YOU NOT — by an elderly divorcee whose second wife left him after only a few months of marriage too soon after his wife of 45 years, his widow died of cancer. It was a touching story. The man told us that the dog was given to him by his children and was named “Skipper” in his honor because that man was a retired US Navy captain.

I decided later that the dog was named “Skipper” because “Vaulter” was taken. The man, after he’d dropped off the dog — that I only agreed to have meet my aging Maggie (my previous dog) — later called me to tell me that Skipper “doesn’t know what to do outside.” WHAT? Suddenly, I was the aging navy captain, my ears wrecked from spending all that time on subs and destroyers and aircraft carrier decks… “He isn’t used to being outside.” I looked out the window and saw Skipper, an 85#, full grown, glorious golden retriever on my very small deck table. Our deck at the time was only 10’x10′ – so the table was like … a bistro table.  He looked like a grizzly on a circus ball.

So I worked with Skipper, trained him beautifully, actually and got him to calm down a bit with lots of long walks. He actually was a saving grace to me during a time of personal struggle and we went on a 4 mile walk together one morning several years ago and he helped me sort things out on that walk. Were it not for him, I likely wouldn’t be coping as well as I do with myself. Even so, Maggie aged and Skipper grew into his adolescence, knocking more things over, including Maggie, and we had to let him go. That was a terrifically hard day for me. I tended to be a “fixer” and a “rescuer” of lost causes back then (I still wrest with some ghosts of that today) so giving him up was like admitting that I’d failed. He was truly a wonderful dog. The great news though is that he went to live with a family whose youngest son had autism and no friends and Skipper became this boy’s very best friend.

So when Skipper left, the cats came in. Not even a weekend went by. We were all taken in by their utter cuteness and blue baby cat eyes. We got two because everyone says to get two so they can keep each other company. The company they keep is more like “HHHIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSS” and “RRRRRrrrrRRRrRrrrrrrRRRRR RAAA-AAAA-A-AAAARRRROOOOOOOOWWWLLLL….” though. I’m not sure they are really fond of one another.

Cats live for a long time. We’ve been together almost 8 years. It’s gonna be awhile. I am sure I will have more posts to write about my awesome cats.

Thank you.

6 responses »

  1. Vinegar and baking soda help get smells out. I saturate the area and then let it dry. Vacuum up the baking soda. What a mess! I refuse to have male cats. Actually, some days I am so tired of cleaning up after pets it is not even funny. I hope you survive the next 12 years with your cats…hahha! I can laugh because I am in the same boat.

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