Monday, January 30, 2012

The Annual Horror

So yeah. Sometimes Anne Elisabeth is so wretched I can hardly even begin to express it. Sometimes meaning, once a year. Usually around the end of January.

That's right, ladies, gentlemen, and furry friends across the nation: I'm talking about the Annual Vet Checkup.

She really played it up this time. It's enough to make a kitty's tail bristle! You see, the night before, she went and fetched my beautiful blue leash and harness. I took one look at those and said, "Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!"

I love my leash and harness. Not all kitties do, but as for me, there's nothing I like more than a good walk around the backyard, especially when darling Rohan is out working on the garden and needs my help and company. Not that it's easy to have a good walk with Anne Elisabeth. She is quite stubborn on the other end of a leash sometimes:

See what I have to live with?

Nevertheless, a good walk is one of my very favorite things. I've been walking on a leash since I was a bitty kitty, before Marmaduke even came to stay. So whenever Anne Elisabeth gets out my leash and harness, I get very excited! I mew and flick my tail quite fetchingly to encourage this good behavior. When Anne Elisabeth took it out that night, I even went so far as to chase after her, gamboling adorably as only I can (I am awfully adorable, you understand). But Anne Elisabeth laughed at me!

"No, no, Minerva Louise," she said in that condescending way of hers. "Not tonight. You need to wait until tomorrow."

Well, fine. If you're going to be that way about it.

I knocked her sharpie under the refrigerator, and that showed her.

Anyway, the next morning, Anne Elisabeth came staggering out of the bedroom much earlier than usual (it's funny to watch when she does that) and got my leash again. "Meeee?" I asked, much less convinced than before.

"Don't fuss, Minerva," said Anne Elisabeth--unfairly, since I hadn't even begun to fuss yet--"It's your own fault. If you would act like a decent cat and go in your cage, I wouldn't have to leash you every time."

Pause right there. What decent cat goes willingly into a cage?

Don't bother to answer. That was rhetorical.

I began to suspect what was really happening by then. And when she grabbed me and slipped me into the leash and harness, I did everything in my power to make it the most unpleasant experience for her. By shear brute force, however, she won the day and carried me out to the car. By then I was certain: It was Vet Visit Day!


It's really not fair at all. The other kitties, when taken to the vet, get to come home right away. But all because I had a severe allergic reaction to a vaccine as a bitty kitty, Anne Elisabeth gets all worried-mother-protective at me and insists I stay all day at the vet for observation! At least, worried-mother-protective is the excuse. Marmaduke says she just enjoys having a day off from wickedness.

I say Marmaduke's a dweeb and bat his nose.

Well, I certainly don't make it easy on anyone concerned, you may believe me. Oh, I'm a perfect lambykins when Anne Elisabeth walks me into the vet office. Everyone exclaims over my great and terrible beauty. "What a soft little kitty girl!" they say, and you can hear the awe in their voices. Then they take me into the back room, and Anne Elisabeth leaves for the day.

Hours later when she shows up to fetch me home, she approaches the desk with trepidation. She can hear caterwauls from the beyond, and she asks the vet techs in a tremulous voice, "Um . . . is that one . . . mine?"

They give her hollow-eyed stares. "Is yours Minerva?" they ask.

And she collapses in embarrassment until I am brought forth. Vaccinated, yes, but not defeated. One day, Veterinarians, you too will bow before the will of Minerva.

Fear me!

This time, like any other, once restored to Anne Elisabeth arms, I became quiet and demure as a fluffy chick, and she carried me back to the car. I'm always a little bit loopy after shots, and I figured there would be time enough to dream up revenge later.

But do you know what Anne Elisabeth went and did? Can you guess?

She brought company along for the ride!!!

Um, excuse me, Anne Elisabeth? Are you really, after everything I've put other people through all day, going to inflict that Thing on me now?

"What the whiskers!"

It was really all too much. That Thing kept whining and wagging its wretched tail, barking its head off at anybody and everybody it saw. No sense of respect or proportion whatsoever, and not even thrilled to pieces to see me after a day's absence! Ghastly creature. I decided to hop in the back and teach it a lesson.

All right, Thing, let me introduce you to my Phaser Eyes!
And I think it fair to warn you, I'm not afraid to use them.

It's amazing how a creature so big can be such a marshmallow inside . . .

Mom! Save me! The scary kitty is gonna phaser me!

Tee hee! I have that beast so thoroughly cowed.

There can be only one reigning despot in Rooglewood.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Stealth Cat

I am a creature of great stealth and guile. See?

Here I am stealthily and guilefully hidden in the foliage. Can you even see me there? Look really closely . . . Ha! Kind of jumps out at you, doesn't it?

Stealth runs in my family lineage. I know this because, since I was abandoned in a ditch when I was itty bitty, I get to pick what my family lineage was (this is how that works, you understand), and I decided that I come from a long line of jaguars, going all the way back to the darkest, most remotest jungles of the Amazon.

There can be no doubt, can there? One look at me, and you see Jungle Cat written all over.


Stealth comes in handy when one is aspiring for household domination and must deal with unruly humans on a daily basis. Specifically, this unruly human:

It's like she thinks I like her or something.

Obviously, she must be put in her place. And the other day, that's just where I put her.

I had to be quite stealthy about it all. You see, Anne Elisabeth (for some reason) doesn't trust me as implicitly as she might. Sometimes, she'll catch me just looking at a vase of flowers from across the room, and she'll say, "MINERVA LOUISE!" in that special tone of voice that means me. It's a little unjust.

I'll knock the vase over five minutes later just to show her.

So the other evening, I watched from across the kitchen as Anne Elisabeth sat drinking tea as she always does when Rohan first comes home (This is how wretched she is: First, she chases Rohan out of the house all day then, as soon as he gets home, she puts him to work making tea! You see how it is? You see what I have to live with?). She was writing up a shopping list as she did so and talking to my sweetest-angel-face-of-love Rohan. She wrote with a green pen.

The green pen.

The beautiful, O! so beautiful green pen. Her favorite pen.

I like her favorite pen a lot. Basically, I like any pen that she is using, but especially the green one. And she was writing with it and talking at Rohan, and I watched, and I had an idea.

So I stealth-catted across the room. I did this by flicking my glorious plume of a tail and saying, "Meeew?" in the sweetest possible tones. Stealth, you see, can mean many things. Sometimes, it's hiding and sneaking. Sometimes, it's deflecting attention. I am an expert at all kinds of stealth.

I rubbed around her ankles. "Meeeew? Meeeew?" I said again, blinking and batting my long lashes at her. Anne Elisabeth stopped writing. She put her teacup down and set aside the beautiful green pen. "Oh, what a sweetness you are!" she exclaimed as she reached down and petted me.

It was going well. I decided to push it to the next level. I hopped in her lap, purr-purr-purring all the way.

"My goodness!" Anne Elisabeth exclaimed, petting me and scratching under my chin. "Aren't we just a little luv-muffin? Are you seeing this Rohan? She never hops into my lap! Only yours!"

After all, who would hop into Anne Elisabeth's lap when Rohan's is available?

"I told you she's a good kitty," Rohan said. "You always say such wretched things about her, but she's such a sweetie!"

Dear, sweet Rohan.

I purred, I flicked my tail, I blinked. Anne Elisabeth petted, cooed, and exclaimed. And then, the moment was right.

With dart of my paw, I snatched the green pen from the table, knocked it to the floor, and leaped after it, sending it rolling. Before Anne Elisabeth had the chance to even begin her ever-predictable, "MINERVA LOUISE!" I had batted that green pen across the kitchen and underneath the dishwasher out of reach!

Oh, yes. I am that good.

Of course, Rohan, brow-beaten man that he is, got down on his hands and knees with a hanger to fetch it out again. But the point was well and truly made, so that wasn't so bad. And when Rohan, having finished catering to Anne Elisabeth's wretchedness, sat down at the table himself, I hopped into his lap and purred the purr of the victorious. He scratched me behind the ears the way I like and said, "Good kitty."

I like him.

So the struggle for Rooglewood Supremacy continues. But I believe I made a fine strike on the side of feline dictatorships everywhere! One day, all the pens will be mine . . .

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Mighty Hunter

I am one. A mighty hunter, that is. I am quite lethal.

I hunt Big Game mostly. Especially now that the Minion passed the 12 lb mark. He is my most constant prey, and he is very big, especially since I am only a little over 8 lbs. He fears me though. No, really! He does! I am little, but I am ferocious. You don't mess with Minerva the Terrible.

I particularly like to hunt Anne Elisabeth. We have a great Big Game that we play pretty often, and it gives me an opportunity to vent all my frustration at her wretchedness. She looks at me (this is usually in the evenings when Rohan is around to be entertained by my brutal ferocity) and her eyes get big, and she says, "I'm going to get your tail!"

Then she reaches out and (would you believe it?) she grabs my glorious tail.


That's when I chase her. She runs around from the kitchen to the living room, yelping in terror as I pursue. At the very last, she leaps up onto the hearth stones and stands there trembling. I leap after her, catch her by the ankles and kill her.

Okay, well, I don't really kill her. Not that I couldn't, mind you! I am quite the bloodthirsty brute, you understand.


But, you know, if I actually did kill her, the Big Game would be over. So I let her live. For now at least.

And I will not let her get my tail!

The other day, we were all very excited because we had something really terrifying to hunt. Something monstrous. Behold!

Isn't it freaky?

I do enjoy a good Bug Battle. Marmaduke found it first and tried to eat it, of course, because that's his solution to everything (boys!). But the bug foiled his efforts by having much too strong an outer shell, and he was forced to drop it and let the rest of us have a go at it.

Marmaduke and the Minion were a little freaked out by it after Marmaduke failed to chew it. So I stepped in and saved the day! See?

I flipped it on its back!

It sat there flailing its legs for a nice long time, and Anne Elisabeth sat on the counter and went, "Eeeew! Eeeew! Eeeew!" She doesn't have the spirit of the Mighty Hunter, you see. Not like I have. No one has a hunter spirit like mine!

Rohan told me what  a good kitty I was, because he's darling like that. I blinked at him, and I really meant it.

Then Anne Elisabeth had to get all wretched and say, "Rohan, please, can you take it outside?"

She's so bossy!

But, Rohan did what she asked because he is still blind to her manipulative machinations. One day, I will reveal the truth to him, and then Rooglewood will finally succumb to my ultimate dominion!

In the meantime, whenever she tries to get my tail, I'll just have to chase her down and kill her (but, you know, not really).

Are you not amazed at my hunting skills?

Monday, January 16, 2012

And Christmas is Stolen Away

Well, thank wickedness. Anne Elisabeth finally finished her wretched deadline! I was beginning to wonder if I would ever have an opportunity to write again. Every time I got anywhere near the computer, Anne Elisabeth was all, "No, Minerva Louise, Mommy needs to work now."

Proving how delusional she is. I mean, really. Mommy?

Anyway, she's finished up that deadline and now spends her time frantically vacuuming up all clumps of fur I have graciously left around the house. She says that I shed in tumbleweeds and it's atrocious. I say she should talk. She and that Thing with all its shaggy coat. Not to mention the Minion. I am certainly not the only one who sheds in this house! Wretched Anne Elisabeth.

Speaking of wretched, do you know what she did? Do you? She STOLE CHRISTMAS!

She does it every year, and every year, I express my displeasure, and she does it anyway. She takes all those wonderful dangly ornaments off the Christmas tree, forces my darling Rohan to haul the tree outside, thereby ruining my very favorite of all time napping spots and bereaving life of all true comfort.

I tried to tell her. And when she piled up some wreaths and the bag with the Christmas table cloth and quilt on the cedar chest, I made it very plain that I did not want her to take them down to the basement.

I mean, how much plainer can a resident dictator be? Wherever Christmas is, that's my favorite napping spot! Is this difficult to understand?

Apparently. She took it all away. And she seems to think she did right.

Oh, well. I have satisfaction in knowing at least that Rohan was on my side. It was he, in fact, who insisted they keep everything up until January 6th. Maybe next year he'll get her to keep it even longer. We'll see . . .

Still, one does start to wonder who's boss around here.

I hope, faithful readers, to enthrall you all with my writerly wit more often in the near future. In the meanwhile, purrs!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year

Do you have any idea just how wrong it is for resident dictators to wear holiday ribbons?

There is just no living with that Anne Elisabeth sometimes.

Oh, well. Happy New Year anyway, I guess.

It is very difficult for me to make new year's resolutions considering I am already so very beautiful, not to mention wonderful. I have Rohan wrapped around my pretty paw, the Minion to do my every bidding, and a new nemesis in the form of that Thing to add some variety to my usual strife with Anne Elisabeth. Life is, for the most part, quite complete.

Here are some things I expect to happen sometime over the course of this next year, however.

Anne Elisabeth is going to have the nerve to take Rohan away to some strange realm called Wisconsin sometime in March. This means we will probably have a babysitter. I don't mind this so much . . . a switch-up from Anne Elisabeth all day is always welcome. Plus I like everyone who's babysat us, especially Charity, who has soft hands and calls me "Minnie." She's the only person I allow to call me "Minnie." Because she's Charity and I love her. That being said, I do NOT approve of Anne Elisabeth taking Rohan away. I mean, whose darling is he anyway? She is so presumptuous sometimes.

Then I keep hearing rumors revolving around Molly. Anne Elisabeth, upon occasion, makes the rather grouchy remark: "I don't want to give Molly back," and proceeds to sulk in an unladylike fashion for several minutes afterwards. All I can wonder is, Give Molly back to whom? I suppose we will learn that secret sometime this spring.

There are three different strange cats coming into the Rooglewood territory lately. Three lady cats, Anne Elisabeth believes, and at least two of them are "in the family way," as they say. Promiscuous things. All those feral cats have the morals of  . . . well, feral cats. I look down my nose at them all.

But last year, when two different mama kitties brought litters to Rooglewood, Anne Elisabeth ended up getting all charitable and turned Rooglewood into a veritable Orphanage for Unwanted Kittens! Would you believe it? I mean, look at all these things!

Mya, the gray kitten and first orphan.

And Mycroft (dark tabby) and Maxwell (orange tabby)

And look at this one! Do you know what that is? Well, I'll tell you what that is: That's the one that stayed, that's what that is! All the others found homes and domains with other humans. That one, however, was shoved into our peaceful Rooglewood existence and never left it.
Did it matter how often we informed Anne Elisabeth that we did not want another permanent edition to Rooglewood? Um, no. This is Anne Elisabeth we're talking about. So there he is, being introduced to Molly.
I suppose it all worked out in the end. He does make for a fine Minion now that he's bigger. But still, it's the principle of the thing, you know?

Needless to say, I'm more than a little concerned by all these new expecting mothers prancing through my backyard. I hope it doesn't mean another plague of kittens! But I suppose we'll have to wait for spring and see . . .

Anyway, I don't know when I'll get a chance to post again. Anne Elisabeth is in the throes of deadline-mania and is completely hogging all the computer time. Sometimes when Rohan is home, he kindly distracts her long enough for me to steal a moment here and there. So hopefully I will be able to keep you updated on events at Rooglewood as this new year progresses. In the meanwhile, I hope all of you are finding your outlook bright, your humans willing feeders, and your sunlit spots especially warm and comfy.

Purrs and bumps.