Monday, March 29, 2010

This old saying my Daddy has . . .

So, my Daddy (now 78, and STILL a good ol' Texas country boy), has had for years a wealth of sayings my friends from places other than Texas consider rather . . . well, let's just say"Colorful"  . . . and leave it at that for now. 

I can remember him saying, as we were growing up, when someone would leave the bathroom with a rather noxious odor, "Smells like something done crawled up inside you, died and is rottenin'!".    Yes, you get the idea, colorful, and well . . . evocative.  Somehow, until this morning, I just thought that saying was funny, somewhat disgusting, and just another Texas truism, but didn't really relate to it on a personal level . . . even having spent almost 25 years in nursing. 

Well, I came in this morning and sat down at the computer to catch up.  And thought to myself "What IS that smell?".  Diana, my kitty sitter, is usually religious about scooping the litter boxes when I'm gone, but I thought maybe she missed the three boxes in the office.  I took a gander at them . . . hmmm, LOOK like they were scooped last night, but maybe the litter has reached that point where no amout of scooping is going to fix things.  OK, I'll change out boxes.  So I did, and the . . . ur . . . ummm . . . 'aroma' was better for about 10 minutes.  Aahhhh!  SO much better!

Ten minutes later, and the 'death miasma' is back.  What the hell?!?!?   It's pleasant outside, so I have the windows open.  Maybe it's actually coming in from the back yard?  Something crawled over the fence and died in our back yard.   THAT must be it.

I put on my shoes and dutifully walk the back yard, scoping it out for the rotten animal carcus I was SURE was going to be there.  Nope, nothing but the sun shining, birds chirping, and CLEAN air.  OK . . . maybe it's just in my nasal passages, and I'm imagining it.  I go back to the desk, and start sorting and pricing the shipment of beads that arrived over the weekend. 


I turn over the overstuffed chair and ottoman in the office - nope, no dead bodies there.  Maybe Steve's rat died?  Nope, Hershey is cheerfully crunching Cheerios in her cage on his computer hutch.  I go count kitty heads again (I was pretty sure I'd seen them all when I got home last night, but thought I should double check . . . I mean, this is a DEATH smell).  All accounted for. 

I sit back down at the desk again.  And notice the circular 'buttprint' of nastiness now adorning my page of inventory.   What the hell?  Angel jumps up on the desk.  It was like a wall of dead water buffalo shit fell over on my head and crushed itself up my nose.  (I've never actually smelled dead water buffalo shit, nor seen a wall built of it, but this is what I imagine it would smell like - the rancid bottom of a pond where no new water has appeared since the dinosaurs walked the earth, along with the usual eau de stink of large mammel crap.) 


I grab Angel (who, by the way, is an extraordinarily furry Birman) and look at her more closely.  Her whole backside is a mass of matted poop . . . apparently one little turd stuck at some point, and the rest have been clinging on to that one for dear life. 

OMG - Off to the sprayer we go.  Twenty minutes later, the cat is REALLY pissed off at me, I'm soaked, and my nose is finally happy.

Well, lessons learned.  It may have taken me almost 48 years to figure out what Daddy meant, but by God, I got it now.  Apparently, he met Angel in a previous life . . .

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Froggie - The Incredible Disappearing Kitty

15 March 2010
Well, just another day at the office . . . sort of . . . I guess . . . if you work at an insane asylum for crazy cat ladies . . .

Livvie (who's due on Thursday) has been lonely for the past ten days, since Cha had her kittens, and has been crated with them, so Livvie's been alone in the kitten room, atho' Cha is just across the room in her crate . . . of course, as with most new mommies, Cha has eyes only for her three little ones, so poor Liv was alone to all intents and purposes. So - I went ahead and put Froggie (who's due in mid-April) in the kitten room to keep Livvie company, since she's an extremely social girl, and was very unhappy being sequestered alone. Froggie's a little bitchy, but she's OK and Livvie likes everyone, so I figured they'd be happy enough together.

Well, today was my day to answer phones out at the shelter this week, so I went ahead and crated Livvie before I left this morning. She wasn't real happy about it, but better safe than sorry. Froggie's not due for a month, so I figured . . . what kind of trouble can she really get into? That'll teach me to think.

So, I did my day at the shelter, and got home and went to check on my girls. All three of Cha's little sweeties were lined up at the milkbar. No one took any notice of me.

Froggie gave me an ankle rub, and then trotted back to her perch on the window sill, intent on giving hell to the mockingbirds in the back yard.

Livvie, still as round as a tick, let me know she wasn't happy about being crated - of course, I know that'll change as soon as her babies arrive, but for now, she's intent on voicing her displeasure. So I popped the top on more cat food (I'm convinced they love me for my opposable thumbs) and went on to take care of other stuff.

Nine o'clock comes, and I'm so sleepy I can't see straight, so time to put everyone to bed for the night . . . tomorrow night will start the sleeping with Livvie/hourly checks on her, but planned on a good night's snoozing tonight. That'll teach me to plan . . .

All three of Cha's littles have miraculously reached the creeper stage in the three hours since I got home. Cha is having a conniption fit, since they've crept under the bed in her crate. Bed out of crate, rug in. Cha is happy again, babies are motivating around rug, all good.

Livvie, still round and unhappy, scarfs down her two cans of food, and looks at me like she's waiting for me to explain this awful insult I've done her by crating her already. I know, I know, sweetie, but you'll forgive me when your babies are here safe and sound!

Froggie . . . Froggie . . . where the hell is Froggie? This is a small room, only so many places she can hide, right? Wrong. No Froggie to be found. Well, maybe she got by me at the door when I came in - happens all the time, altho' the traffic is usually moving the other way, with all the other cats wanting to get IN to eat the yummy baby food.

OK, time to search the house. Thirty minutes later, I've torn my very small house apart, checked the screens on all the windows, popped the top on two cans of food, including a can of AD (what one vet labeled "Almost Dead" food to me years ago, presumably because it smells so foul to humans that you want to die when you smell it), and shaken three different types of cat teases until my brain is rattling. The rest of the herd is looking at me like a.) they want more AD and/or b.) I've lost what had been left of my tiny little mind.  In the meantime, Froggie is still MIA.

Back to the drawing board. I go back inthe kitten room. "Froggie . . . Froggie . . . here kitty-kitty-kitty." Livvie yells at me, still PO'd about the crating, Cha just looks bewildered that her kids are suddenly standing in her food bowl, and the three babies just mewl a little. I manuever my fat duff onto the floor and look under the end table and TV stand again. I open the drawer in the TV stand to make sure she can't have squeezed her fluffy little butt into the drawer from the back side . . . nope, no Froggie. Or is there? "Froggie?" "Mwrrr" "Where's mama's little Froggie-frog?" "Mwrrrrrrrrrr!"

Hhmmmmm. Seems to be coming from . . . behind me? The only thing behind me is the couch . . . the one that is FAR too flush to the wall for fat little Froggie to be behind. So . . . well, crap . . . there's apparently a fat furry little frog IN our couch. (At some point, I should explain that the couch has a nice little slit up the inside of the back, hidden behind cushions, left over from where Jaimye had to rescue a particularly adventurous kitten a couple of years ago, when she was baby-sitting, so Steve & I could go to the 2008 TICA Annual in Dallas . . . neatly stuffed with a pillow and tucked behind a throw, so no one can get in it. Or so I thought . . .)

At this point let me also note that Steve is out of town on business this week, so I'm the only one here . . . yep, just me and my bad back, myself and I. Shit. Well, here goes nothin'. (Remember the "hey, watch this" rule here, lol.)

I wrestle the couch away from the wall, tipping it forward. (Never mind that ominous 'thunk' that I figure is part of the frame giving way . . .) Yep, there's a Frog on the floor UNDER the couch. As I'm awkwardly holding the now cattywompus couch, she just sits there. "Well, come on out of there, goofy girl" . . . "Here kitty-kitty" . . . "Froggie, move your fat, fluffy ass" . . . SIGH . . . I give up . . . I prop the couch up and climb MY fat ass over the end table to pick her up. All this, and all I get is an indignant 'Mew' on her way to the food bowl.

It's now 10:30 and I'm wide awake. Hell's bells.  (Which is what I'll be hearing in a few hours when the alarm goes off.)  Foiled again.

Stay tuned for details on cat proofing the couch . . . that should be interesting . . .

Monday, March 15, 2010

At the kitchen sink in my bra . . . yes, the window's open . . .

12 March 2010
So how, you ask, did I come to be standing at the kitchen sink in my bra at 11:00am on a Friday morning . . . prime time for the mailman to be coming 'round . . .

It goes something like this: After yesterday's little fiasco with the steak-juicy boob, I was looking forward to a quiet day. I'm supposed to meet a friend for lunch today, so I got up and dressed in a shiny white T-shirt, all the better to show off the pretty blue-green necklace and earrings I made yesterday. (I even put on lip gloss - those who know me well will know what a landmark event that is for me, lol!)

Brodie came into the office and asked to go out to potty, so out I went . . . right through the boy's room . . . and found the walls, floor, and back of Claire painted with a lovely shade of medium brown kitty poo . . . apparently Matey wanted to boff the poop right out of her. Sigh . . .
OK, dogs out - check.
Matey back in his run - check.
Very pissed-off Claire running through house covered in poop - not so much a 'check' as an 'oh, shit' . . .
Grab PO'd kitty by scruff and over to kitchen sink . . . this is definitely a job for the sprayer.

Crap - I'm dressed to leave for lunch. OK, more of that thinking on my feet nonsense . . . wrestle shirt off over head while still holding PO'd cat. Uh, check?

I wash the rear end of the now frankly-out-for-my-blood cat and wrap her in a towel. If looks could kill . . . well, I'd look more like that steak from yesterday, I think.

OK, now I've got to decontaminate the sink. Clorox to the rescue. I scrub out the sink. Of course the phone rings at this point. Where's the damn kitchen towel? Son-of-a . . . Angel has apparently kidnapped another towel. I wipe my hands on my jeans so I can answer the phone, forgetting that I've had my hands in bleach. Well, crap - I'm sure these jeans will now be sporting a white handprint on my rather wide posterior. I answer the phone. Telemarketer. At this point I want to kill.

OK, gotta go meet my friend for lunch. Keys in hand, I'm ready to head for the door. Am I forgetting anything? Oh, yeah - my shirt . . .

Crissa calls to say she needs to meet at noon instead of 11:30. Thank God. I can inspect myself for poop and catch my breath.

How long do you think I can drag lunch out? After all, the boy's room still needs to be de-pooped when I get home. Maybe something from Frederick's of Hollywood for my afternoon cleaning attire? Thank God, it's a quiet neighborhood . . .

"Hey, watch this!"

11 March 2010

OK, so lessons learned: In almost 25 years of health care, mostly as an ER/Flight nurse and paramedic, I came to firmly believe that anything starting with the words "Hey, watch this!" had at least 50-50 odds of turning out poorly for the speaker. Somehow, I managed to forget that little pearl of wisdom this afternoon . . .

So, having had a couple of appointments this morning, and knowing the freezer was looking a little bare, I decided to stop at Sam's on the way home and stock up on meat. I explained to the nice young man at the check-out that my back had been out, and he very kindly packed it all into a nice sturdy cardboard box and had someone load it into my truck for me.

Three minutes later, I arrived home. I open the car door, look at the box, and think to myself , "It's only 10# of hamburger, 10# of chicken breasts, a couple of packages of steaks, and three 1.5# packages of sandwich meat . . . really, how heavy can it be?" (Remember here that I used to routinely tote stretchers, people and miscellaneous heavy crap around all the time . . . of course the operative phrase here is 'used to' . . .)

OK, I CAN do this . . . it's already hotter than hell here and I want to get inside out of the sun . . . I don't wanna do three trips in and out. So, "Hey, watch this!"

I got the box out of the truck. Three steps towards the door, my back said "listen, you dummy, this is a bad plan'. OK, I can think on my feet - I boost the box up to my shoulder . . . that's a little better.

I wrest the front door open, and get inside. Yay, almost there.

Halfway across the living room, I'm wondering why my right boob is suddenly cold and wet. Oh, yeah, remember those steaks? They're leaking. Crap. OK, box down on kitchen island. Every cat in the house is suddenly in the kitchen with me. Shit . . . OK, super fast unload into the frig. Of course the steaks are on the bottom of the box, under all the other crap, steadily having the juices squeezed out of them. Boy, if they're half as juicy to eat as all the stuff that leaked out of them, they're going to be rightously good. Yum . . . maybe I'll fix some of those for dinner tonight.

OK, my back hurts, so just gonna go change clothes, sponge off the steak juice, and chill. By the way, at this point I wondered why all the little carnivores were becoming less interested in the kitchen island, where the steak had bled all over the counter, and are deserting me like rats on a sinking ship. Oh, NOW I know . . .

Yes, it's because my right boob wasn't the only steak-juicy spot in the house . . . apparently I left a trail all the way from the front door to the kitchen. All the cats are now sniffing rabidly at the spots crossing the living room carpet. Well, hell!!!

So, before I sit my aching ass down, I need to scrub the bloody juice out of the carpet. It was like watching furry white sharks circle a slowly moving battleship . . . or is that old battleaxe? I shove the little brats out of the way, and inch my way across the carpet with cool water and a wash cloth. MOST of it came out . . . what's that number for Stanley Steamer again?

Next time I think "Hey, watch this!" someone just go ahead and shoot me right then. I'm just going to find the Tylenol now.

Sigh . . . we'll be having that sandwich meat for dinner tonight.

The Crazy Cat Lady begins to blog . . .

Hi, I'm Leslie, an officially crazy cat lady, living in south Texas with my wonderful hubby, and a whole lot of furkids. (I also have one human son - Thomas, currently serving in the U.S. Army at Ft. Benning - keep him in your prayers, please!)

I breed and show beautiful, sweet Birman cats. Besides running amouk among the furballs (and cleaning up the hairballs) I make beaded jewelry, and spend far too much time goofing at the computer. You can visit our asylum at and see my jewelry at

This is our crazy life . . . join us for lots of phat cat tom phoolery . . .