You Know I Love Spot

funny pictures of cats with captions

Doesn't "grammatically" have two 'M's?
But I quibble with their sentence fragment...


Cat Randomnimity

Mr. O'Kitten took the photo in this post at The Random Cat Project. If you haven't been to the site before, it's kind of cool.

At the moment I'm fighting with iPhoto--am I the only one who hates this program? I don't need its useless attempts at face recognition, of all ridiculous things. All I want to do is resize my pictures and give them titles and be able to find them again later. This does not seem like too much to ask.

I've also managed to fill up an entire photobucket account over the years so I just have to start up another one and we should be good to go. I'm a bit annoyed with photobucket, too, but hey, it's free so yeah-okay-whatever.

And yes, there has been knitting. More to come...

I Was Depressed for Six Months but...

I was depressed for six months, but then I saw this:

I'm all better now.

Stay tuned for more to come.


Speaking of a Box...


Cats on Tuesday: Out of the Box

Cats on Tuesday: There's Just Nothing Like A Box

At first Isis was in the box.

Then she got out of the box, so of course Morgan had to go in and inspect the box.

Isis had to inspect Morgan inspecting the box.

As you can see, Emma was satisfied to observe the proceedings from a safe distance.

Although she was sure she had seen her enter it, Isis had some difficulty ascertaining whether or not Morgan was still in the box.


Super Duper Uber Tiny

What is this? It's the Rosetta Disk, with 13,500 pages of data describing 1,500 languages etched onto a tiny nickel data chip. To see an individual page, you'd need a 500x microscope. Thanks to Gizmodo for yet another fascinating tidbit (and I do mean tidbit).

According to The Rosetta Project, "Fifty to ninety percent of the world's languages are predicted to disappear in the next century, many with little or no significant documentation."


Why the Cats Like Mackenzie

funny pictures of cats with captions

Lolcats offers one theory as to why Emma likes Mackenzie so much. Of course, Mack also pets her and brings her all her cat toys (and I do mean all her cat toys). She even puts treats and toys under the bed for shy Morgan.

I'm sure being a treat dispenser doesn't hurt her reputation with the household felines, though...


Cats on Tuesday: Miss Morgan in Repose

Cats on Tuesday

A poet's cat, sedate and grave,
as poet would wish to have,
was much addicted to enquire,
for nooks to which she might retire,
and where, secure as mouse in chink,
she might repose, or sit and think.
I know not where she caught her trick,
nature perhaps herself had cast her,
in such a mold philosophique,
or else she learn'd it of her master.
Sometimes ascending, debonair,
an apple tree or lofty pear,
lodg'd with convenience in the fork,
she watched the gard'ner at his work;
sometimes her ease and solace sought,
in an old empty wat'ring pot,
there wanting nothing, save a fan,
to seem some nymph in her sedan,
apparell'd in exactest sort,
and ready to be borne in court.

~ William Cowper (1731 - 1800)

Cowper, a prolific poet and hymnist, is still known today for such quotations as the following:

God moves in a mysterious way,
His wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps in the sea,
And rides upon the storm.

Olney Hymns (1779)--'Light Shining out of Darkness'
He also suffered from severe depressive episodes and numerous suicide attempts, convinced that he was condemned to hell eternally and that God was commanding him to make a sacrifice of his own life. Translator of The Iliad and The Odyssey, prolific writer, and hailed by Samuel Taylor Coleridge as "the best modern poet," Cowper remains one of the most influential poets of his time.

Ode to Spot

Felix Catus, is your taxonomic nomenclature,
an endothermic quadruped carnivorous by nature?
Your visual, olfactory and auditory senses
contribute to your hunting skills, and natural defenses.

I find myself intrigued by your subvocal oscillations,
a singular development of cat communications
that obviates your basic hedonistic predilection
for a rhythmic stroking of your fur, to demonstrate affection.

A tail is quite essential for your acrobatic talents;
you would not be so agile if you lacked its counterbalance.
And when not being utilized to aide in locomotion,
it often serves to illustrate the state of your emotion.

O Spot, the complex levels of behaviour you display
connote a fairly well-developed cognitive array.
And though you are not sentient, Spot, and do not comprehend,
I nonetheless consider you a true and valued friend.

~ Commander Data, Starfleet, United Federation of Planets


Cats on Tuesday: Our New Treat Dispenser

Cats on Tuesday: Our New Treat Dispenser

At least once a week, our niece Mackenzie calls to come over and visit the cats. Recently she came bearing gifts: a package of cat treats.

Emma really couldn't care less whether Mackenzie brings her cat treats or not. For some inexplicable reason, this once shy, virtually feral kitten who has very rarely been exposed to children eagerly follows this energetic two-year-old from room-to-room, even allowing herself to be hugged and held. She enthusiastially plays with every toy Mack offers her and, on last visit, even submitted to a kiss. Go figure. Of course, there's nothing wrong with a treat now and then, either.

In other news, Isis is now Mackenzie's friend. This is directly due to the fact that Mackenzie now comes bearing treats. Isis hasn't hissed at her in at least four visits.

When she's here, Mack likes to talk to the cats on the telephone. She carries the handset around and announces which cat she's talking to at the moment. For example, she'll say, "I'm talking to Morgan." (Morgan is usually hiding under the bed or lurking just around the corner, as she still hasn't quite adjusted to the high and often noisy speed at which a two-year-old human moves, although she's very curious).

"I'm talking to Emma," Mackenzie announced to me, headset pressed to her ear.

Curious, I asked her what Emma said to her.

She furrowed her brow a bit as if I were half daft, obviously wondering how I could be quite so moronic. She replied matter-of-factly, "Meow."

Oh, of course. Emma says, "Meow."

Mack even put a headset on Emma, just like the one Uhuru wears on Star Trek. Emma very politely allowed her to do it, too. And then said, Meow. (Probably.)


Godzilla Kitteh Will Nom Yew

You know how I love to see giant cats thwarting humankind. (Thanks to littleblackcrow for sending me the link to such a great blog.) You must take a brief moment to see Spanky vs. Samurai here.

Then of course, one can always has cheezburgers:

godzilla kitteh prepares to nom yer citeh.


Cats on Tuesday: We'll Sing in the Sunshine

Cats on Tuesday: We'll Sing in the Sunshine

Spring is definitely here. Hooray for sunbeams.

We also got a new thing recently. It came in a big box. (Hooray for tax refunds.)

Then there's the new towel warmer...

"We'll sing in the sunshine
We'll laugh every da-a-y
We'll sing in the sunshine
Then I'll be on my way..."
(Gale Garnett, 1964)


It was the black kitten's fault entirely...

On April 25, 1856, Lewis Carroll first encountered the three year-old named Alice Liddell who would serve as his inspiration for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and, later, Through the Looking Glass.

Alice Liddell, photographed in 1859 by Charles Dodgson (a.k.a Lewis Carroll)

From Through the Looking Glass:

"One thing was certain, that the white kitten had had nothing to do with it--it was the black kitten's fault entirely. For the white kitten had been having its face washed by the old cat for the last quarter of an hour (and bearing it pretty well, considering): so you see that it couldn't have had any hand in the mischief.

"The way Dinah washed her children's faces was this: first she held the poor thing down by its ear with one paw, and then with the other paw she rubbed its face all over, the wrong way, beginning at the nose: and just now, as I said, she was hard at work on the white kitten, which was lying quite still and trying to purr--no doubt feeling that it was all meant for its good.

"But the black kitten had been finished with earlier in the afternoon, and so, while Alice was sitting curled up in a corner of the great armchair, half talking to herself and half asleep, the kitten had been having a grand game of romps with the ball of worsted Alice had been trying to wind up, and had been rolling it up and down till it had all come undone again; and there it was, spread over the hearth-rug, all knots and tangles, with the kitten running after its own tail in the middle.

"'Oh, you wicked, wicked little thing!' cried Alice, catching up the kitten, and giving it a little kiss to make it understand that it was in disgrace. 'Really, Dinah ought to have taught you better manners! You ought, Dinah, you know you ought!'" ...

Read more of Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass now (free etext)

Alice Pleasance Liddell (1852-1934)


A Good Night's Sleep

I've gone through most of most of my life with a broken on/off switch. Even as a child I could lie awake at night for hours (I remember once counting backwards from one thousand to one); by the time morning would come, I never felt rested and getting out of bed was sheer torture.

In the worst of my depressions, I could literally sleep for 24 to 30 hours. But even when I wasn't depressed, I could easily sleep for 12 to 15 hours and was generally terrified of sleeping through the alarm clock.

In recent months, I've made a new discovery: waking up like a "normal" human being after a good night's sleep. Granted, I need about 10 hours of sleep, but after I've gotten my 10 hours, I can now willingly get out of bed and face the day.

For me, this is a revolutionary experience.

There seems to be a combination of factors at work: finally getting on a relatively regular sleep schedule; finding a combination of bipolar meds that work so that depression isn't wrecking havoc with my sleep; avoiding caffeine in the evenings; and, most interestingly, fish oil.

Um...what was that last one? Fish oil. I only mention it because it seems to be helping to balance my moods, improve my sleep, and eliminate PMS. I haven't had PMS symptoms for the past two months, and the extreme fatigue, irritability, pain and cramps I experienced bordered on PMDD because there were times it was severe enough to be debilitating.

Back in December my doctor suggested the fish oil to help boost my 'good' cholesterol. I've been taking 1000 mg/day since then and I'm convinced that it's helping in these other areas as well. That and the pomegranate juice... *grin*

I had a friend back in Michigan who swore eating fresh pineapple worked, too. I'm all in favor of whatever does the trick!


If You Can't Find Me...

...I'm Probably Lost in the Borean Tundra

I resisted for quite awhile, but I finally gave in and began playing World of Warcraft. Partly because it gives me something fun to do with Mr. O'Kitten, and partly because I really did think I would like it.

I must have been pretty young the first time heard about Dungeons & Dragons, because I remember thinking it was awfully disappointing that you couldn't actually play it in a real dungeon, or at least in a cave or someplace someone had made to look like a dungeon.

The thought of sitting around in someone's basement rolling dice and looking lots of things up in a book sounded extremely tedious to me.

But now, of course, you can go into dungeons online. And believe me, they are spectacular, as are the forests, mountains, oceans, deserts, and plains, replete with varying flora and fauna. It is really something for someone like me who still remembers Pong.

Remember Pong? Home Pong was released in the mid-1970s and, if you're too young to remember this moment in history, it probably sounds like a non-event. What was truly revolutionary about Pong was that it marked the first time you could actually interact with your television set.

Before Pong, television programming was merely broadcast into your home--and if your home was like mine, you got maybe four of five different channels. This meant that your TV set was merely a receiver for broadcasts. For the first time ever, Pong made it your TV set an interactive device.

My family had Pong, but (revolutionary or not) it really was a snoozefest. Pac-Man, however, captured my imagination. "When Pac-Man was released [in 1980], most arcade video games in North America were primarily space shooters such as Space Invaders, Defender, or Asteroids. The most visible minority were sports games that were mostly derivative of Pong. Pac-Man succeeded by creating a new genre and appealing to both genders." I was 13, and appeal to me it did.

However, I am not of the joystick generation. Mr. O'Kitten, who is five years younger than me, is far more adept at all things arcade and videogame, from Space Invaders to Nintendo to mastering the finer points of the newer online games like World of Warcraft. By the time Pac-Man was installed in my local pizzeria, I just couldn't seem to develop the lightning-fast eye-hand coordination the game required. That didn't stop me from losing a few quarters, but I was never destined to become an arcade junkie.

So now I can be a big monster online. I really like being a monster--and even better, I'm a monster that can turn into a cat, which entertains me no end.


Gojira Returns...

funny pictures of cats with captions