January 29th, 2010


Spelunker's Latest Trick

Evidently suffering from separation anxiety, Spelunker has taken to following Two faced into the bathroom. She generally accompanies me, slipping in and out when I do. She occupies my throne time by biting the metal tip of the bathtub drain, which she always knocks into the tub, rearranging so that it points upward for ease of chewing.

When I stop that, she reaches up the wall as far as she can, grabbing the vine of the rhododendron, which I read somewhere is poisonous to cats. She then chews on a leaf. If I don't lock them up overnight, she'll chew a new leaf on the one in the kitchen window or behind the north chair. I used to get a lot of reading done in the throne room.

Of course, the hall is chilly, so I shut the door. It has been very hard to latch from the inside. Spelunker, the avalanche specialist, has learned to bang his 11+ pounds into things to move them -- doors, off balance people, piles of books, clothes, machinery, and most lately, the kitchen cabinet doors.

There he found a treasure-house of toxic products to play with. He rambled through the cleaners under the sink while I was down at the mail box, getting both banned to the utility room yesterday. I let them out, and he immediately went to the door and began banging it. He turned an OPENED can of Ajax upside down. Then he tried to right it... By the time I got the computer, lap board and blanket off my lap, I had a pretty liberal coating on the linoleum.

Banned again.

I took the yard stick and ran it through all three handles. He'd gotten into the salad oils and crisco, but not tipped anything yet. I swatted him out before he got very creative. A quart or so of corn oil ought to have made a lovely floor covering with the Ajax mixed in. Home-made paste, anyone?

So, now he uses that oh, so talented front paw to let himself out of the bathroom. He BANG barges in; I lean forward and slam the door, which fails to latch, but closes. He watches Two Faced chase the drain plug, wiggle the vines, and decides to go occupy my chair before I get back out there. He flips his body up in the air, landing facing up, in the opposite direction, then sticks a paw under the crack, wiggling. Sometimes he does this at the hinge edge, but most of the time now, he uses the sink side.

He and Two Faced used to play one on each side of the door, chasing each other's paws, swinging the door back and forth before it got cold out. I guess this is more of a variation on a theme.

He knows he's in the dog house, so he's clinging even more. As I type, he climbed from his sleeping spot lying lengthwise along my legs stretched out on the support to curling up in front of me. That worked great when he was a kitten, but now he blocks a large percentage of the keyboard. I have a blanket that stops there, so he's burrowed down inside it.

That's actually a good thing. It keeps me from having to fish little white hairs off the keyboard.
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My sister's sense of humor is something else. When I stayed with them last March after eye surgery, I bought two large Spinach and Mushroom pizzas, my favorites, and not available within a 100 mile round trip drive of my house.

I forgot them after a month of intense eye problems.

She didn't realize she had them -- they had to eat their way back down to them. She found just the perfect box in a hall, set out to throw away. It had six or eight sheets of bubble wrap inside, and a half inch foam border completely around it, so she laid the two large pizzas side by side, taped the lid, and mailed it on the coldest days she could find.

She got asked about her package, and said, "Yes, technically, she supposed it was perishable -- two large frozen pizzas."

The wind chill outside was -20 or 30 at the time, so they laughed. But, I live in SOUTHERN Iowa. Although our outside temps are cold, WE DO HEAT post offices and mail cars. (Up north, they have the driver in a small area and the mail in the unheated back...) Here, our guys use their personal cars, which heat the entire thing.

Two very thawed pizzas arrived in my door, being put up and down between the screen and the inside door in full sunlight under the protective roof. Generally, the mailman leaves packages outside on the bench, but I guess he thought the packaging would not deter the wild cat population for long.

When I opened the door, the box fell toward me, a stack of regular mail on top of it.

I put them in the fridge, as the package said not to refreeze once they'd thawed. I opened one at noon today. Instead of a circular pizza, it was flattened on every side into a trapezoid. I tried to cook it, but the thickened areas would not heat properly. I ate a piece cut out near the center that was pretty uniform. Most of it was not doughy. I popped the worst cooked part back in when I heated #2, intending to freeze the leftovers...

It was 4" wide at one end, 3" at the other, and took up less than half the box. I tried to cook it anyway -- WILD CAT FOOD... I tried heating the partially cooked slice in the microwave, but only the top acted right.


What I learned: Unless you plan to deliver the goods by dog sled in the frozen tundra. feed the pizza to someone nearby. (And my mouth is SO ready to taste a "real" example of that pizza -- just the shot of the one on the box lid did it.)

Thanks, LH -- Good try, and DID I EVER LAUGH... I don't think there will be much market for rhomboid and trapezoid pizzas. Home made weird pizza shapes would not be a good business venture to diversify into.

Oh, and the wild cats say, "Thank you very much. When's the next delivery scheduled?"