Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ya know...

If you're going to give me Stinky Goodness, you have to expect stinky farts. Don't complain when I'm sitting on your desk and let out a good one. It goes with the territory.


Friday, September 21, 2007

Formerly Feral Friday - Dharma

I figured this would be a good opportunity to introduce the newest member to our crazy household: Dharma

After Ayla passed over the Rainbow Bridge, Bear (my husband) and I went to the local shelter that was devoted to rescuing cats. Originally our plan was to adopt an older cat but I made the mistake of going into the "kitten room." We all know how that is, right?

That's when I saw this little girl. She was in a cage with three other cats but she was rubbing all over the cage door and looking at me saying "take me home please!" When I picked her up, I was able to hold her like a baby and rub her belly and she LOVED it. That sealed the deal with me.

She is approximately six months old and is a little lovey. She's also a big spaz. All she does for most of the day (and I mean about 20 hours a day) is run around the house, going up and down all the stairs, exploring, and getting into relative trouble. Loki is having a blast with his new best friend. It's funny seeing this five pound cat chasing the seventeen pound Maine Coon. Boo, Monkee, and Phoebe have also been playing with her. The only big holdout is Fizzy, who is a bit jealous, but even she seems to be slowly falling to the charms of this little one.

Oh and yes, the name is partially from the show "Dharma and Greg." We were actually driving past a store a couple of towns over called "Dharma's Gifts" (or something like that) when I said "hey, that would be a good name." It does fit because she is a free spirit. :)

And I'm sorry for taking so long to share about her. I was going to last week but I literally could not get a good picture of her since she is constantly on the move. Every time I thought I had a decent shot she would move before the camera clicked. This picture was a miracle since I just happened to be sitting at my desk at the time and she came up to look out the window.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Etyomology of "Fuzzies"

You are probably wondering why I call my kitties "Fuzzies." Well, most likely you're not but just in case they are a few of you out there with the slightest bit of curiosity, I might as well sate it.

And yes, I do call kitties "Fuzzies." Make sure it's with a capital F. Why? Lower case means it's all cats. Upper case means my cats.

It started way back when I first rescued Ayla in 1990. For some reason, I had a lot of problems finding a suitable name for her. Sometimes you don't even have to look at the cat and the name will fit. In her case, I had a premonition it wouldn't be that easy. Until I could figure out what the "right" name was, I started calling her "fuzzy." Why? She wasn't long-haired but she wasn't short-haired either. She was...well...fuzzy.

Now at the time, I didn't want a cat named Fuzzy. No offense to those of you have cats named "Fuzzy," or "Snowball," or another simple, common name. This was back when I was one of those smug-assed college history students who could give her cat some kind of profound name like "Confucius" or "Augustus" or "Dante." One of those type names if you know what I mean.

It took two weeks before we agreed on a name. By this point I threw out almost every name I could think of and she would give me this "oh I don't think so" look. You know, the kind that if you do something the cat doesn't like she'll poop on your pillow type of look? The name we finally agreed on was Ayla. I had been reading the Clan of the Cave Bear at the time and the main character was smart and independent. When I said the name to her, she looked at me and said "that will work."

However, the name "fuzzy" just wouldn't go away. Until she passed on I would occasionally call her "Ayla-Fuzzy." She accepted it and I couldn't let go of it. After a while, the term "fuzzy" morphed into a generic label for all cats. Mine just got the upper case "F" 'cause they're special to me.

As for "Flock O' Fuzzies"? Well, what do you call a grouping of fuzzies? I've heard some strange ones over the years like a "gaggle of geese" or a "herd of cats." "Flock" seemed to go with fuzzies (upper case "f" on both for mine). Then, the "o'" just came with me being silly.

Hence, my little Flock o' Fuzzies.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Gooodbye sweet girl

Yesterday, I realized it was Ayla's birthday. She would've been 17 years old yesterday.

99% of me is sure I made the right decision. It is never easy. This time had been especially tough. The tumor in her mouth not only had poked out of the skin but had ulcerated. She could barely open her mouth to eat. On the other hand, she still had a lot of spunk left in her. However, we were watching her die in front of us, a slow and painful death.

When we saw Dr. Bob on the 5th, he said she had only a week or two at most. We knew going in that this might be her last visit. She had lost another pound in the two weeks since we had seen him last and that's when we knew. I loved her so much and to see her face and the rest of her body get slowly and painfully eaten away by that disease was heartbreaking. Was giving her two weeks worth it? There was barely anything left of her physically, so who was I doing this for? Her or me? I knew I had no other choice to make.

She went so quickly. Dr. Bob had barely inserted the needle and I could feel her slipping away. It was like she was eager to join her old friend Xanadu who had crossed the Bridge so long ago. It also told me how truly sick she was. As her body relaxed I still see all the strain and pain work its way out of her face. Up until then I didn't know how much pain she had been in, but now I knew. Dr. Bob told me afterwards that I had made the right decision since she passed so quickly. I know I had but it still hurt.

I keep my favorite picture of her on my desk now in a place of honor. I still cry when I think about her and sometimes a trick of the eye makes me see her in her favorite spot: my pillow.

I will always miss you dear friend.
You were good to me through some of the toughest times of my life.
I hope I was able to return that favor to you.
I will always love you my sweet little grump.
Have fun with Xanadu, Moose, and Boo Boo.