I was cleaning the cat carrier just now and noticed the tag on it, which said "Nixon [Mylastname]." I ripped it off and wadded it up without thinking about it. I am fucked up like some kind of an Edna St. Vincent Millay which is specifically preoccupied with the mortality of badly-behaved cats.

I was looking for something in the medicine cabinet earlier, found some old meds of Papaw's, and left them in place as always, because "he might need them," then felt distantly shitty, then left them alone.

I need to try and be Roxy Lalonde instead of Rose Lalonde for once and work on the Facing And Accepting Death thing. I just need to try and not do it up too Roxy and drink this bottle of fruit wine Mom got me in one evening or something.
I dreamed that my dead cat's ghost came to sit on the couch. I saw Nixon curled up in her usual spot, and it took me a minute to remember that that was wrong. I said to her, "Oh, no, honey, you passed away months ago. You shouldn't be here." She heard my voice and came whining towards me, walking across the quilt that [personal profile] thegeekgene was working on next to her.

As I leaned over to pet my ghost cat, who was still very soft and still complaining about nothing, [personal profile] thegeekgene asked me, "What are you doing?"

I said, "Nixon's here. Can't you see her?"

"No."

"Maybe I'm just hallucinating her, then."

I turned around to see if I had any other hallucinations waiting in other parts of the room. I saw Anxiety asleep on the table, and beside him another version of Nixon from earlier in life, very fat and healthy. They seemed to flicker in and out of existence, and I was sad because I felt that this probably meant that either they wouldn't last, or I needed to go to the hospital.
"You spent $200 more than usual on Veterinary!"

You know, there are certain categories in which I think Mint should refrain from giving these warnings. Veterinary, Medical Emergency, Caskets And Other Funerary Supplies - you know, stuff like that.
* So Yamamotoyama's website makes you print out a PDF of their mail-order form? It's crazy, it's like the 19th century or something! But the Tokusen Kokyu Sencha is really good and costs almost twice as much from Amazon, so I am willing to do this.

* The freezer is full of kielbasa for reasons that escape me. I'm thinking of turning some of it into some kind of soup.

* When I enter the living room, Anxiety the Cat sits on the back of the couch and mews plaintively at me. He continues doing this until I either give him his allergy tablet - he's decided he loves Pill Pockets, following a lengthy period of hating them - or sit down on the couch so he can roll anxiously around my lap, peering up at me uncertainly to make sure I'm not moving. Anxiety was Nixon's servant; he would sit down on the couch, and she would sit down on top of him and fall asleep, and he wouldn't move until she was ready to get up again.

I'm not sure if what he's doing is some sort of grieving behavior, or if he's decided that he is the primary cat now and must therefore behave as much like her as possible. If that's his goal, it's unfortunate that he's too self-conscious to do the role justice. He only vocalizes when I'm looking directly at him and he knows for sure he's got my attention, and though he's twice Nixon's size, he doesn't feel secure enough in his physical presence to follow me around or headbutt me. He kneads my legs like a kitten when he gets me on the couch. Poor neurotic cat.

Should I be calling him "Ford"?
Me: Somewhere on earth, Mom, the reincarnation of Richard Nixon is being born yet again to some unsuspecting household's pet.

Mom: Oh, no. Those poor people.

I asked Mom last week about how much property damage she thought Nixon'd done over the years. Mom said promptly, "Oh, at least $8,000." Apparently she'd calculated this up at some point. Nixon was an unusually destructive cat; she ruined carpets, cabinets, chairs, and doors.

I haven't slept much the last few days, so I keep seeing the other tabby and briefly thinking that it's her and it was all some sort of mistake. Earlier, I was trying to remember the house without her, and realized that I couldn't. She was born almost immediately after the newer 2/3 was built onto it, when I was in third grade. So Mom and Dad's bedroom had only existed for a few months when she was born in it. Ursula LeGuin says that a cat is the house's soul; I guess she really was.

(This may help to explain the termites, moisture issues, and other problems that she couldn't have caused directly.)

(See, there I went again.)

Because I am useless for anything other than brooding about her at the moment, I'm going through all my and Dad's old photos for the ones of her. She looks so fat and sleek in the older ones. I can't imagine how people mourned before Flickr albums.

Thank you to everyone who's commented.

Nixon

Jun. 12th, 2012 06:28 pm
sits in the corner and doesn't eat. She doesn't want me to touch her, so I'm leaving her alone. She has two kinds of food, a bowl of water, and a bowl of milk if she wants them. The vet says there's nothing to be done at this point.

Thank you to everyone who's commented - sorry I'm not replying individually. I am still freaking out, and expect to continue to do so for however long it takes. I went to the office today, after having worked from home yesterday, and ended up being a jerk, so maybe I shouldn't have done that. I needed to mail stuff, though.
Read more... )

Unrelatedly, the deer have for some reason eaten one of Dad's cornstalks - just one! - and Dad nearly killed his own blueberry plants by misapplying weed killer. His Father's Day gift is that I weeded his corn and trimmed off the dead parts of the blueberries.
I mopped in front of my door, then mopped the rest of the hallway and the dining room, then took the mop and bucket outside to their rack. When I came back in, she had pooped in front of my door.
1) She smells really bad.

2) She poops on the floor, and her poop smells astonishingly bad. Mom calls it "distinctive." I can tell from halfway across the house when she's had a bowel movement.

2b) I usually don't need to, because she likes doing it right in front of my door.

3) She is currently taking three different kinds of medicine for the poop problem - thyroid medication and anti-inflammatories for the long term, and a short-term course of antibiotics. This is not presently helping.

4) She has clawed me in almost every conceivable place in protest against this regimen.

5) She'll be old enough to vote in April.

6) She was born in front of a TV on which Richard Nixon's funeral was being broadcast live. I'm not taking her in to get registered. I've read Petshop of Horrors, I know how this shit works.
I'm jittery, hyper, sweating, and obsessed with how everything smells. Every odor is an assault that leaves me reeling today, like that Andre Norton book about the perfumist girl who's oppressed by her boss's hygiene. (Not Norton's best - as someone who genuinely is seriously preoccupied with perfume, I didn't really buy the way the heroine related to it - but it's solid enough.) I've got incense burning in two rooms and I keep going through my perfumes and teas. If there were a car here and I were allowed to drive, I might have taken off for the greenhouse to stick my head in the rose bushes.

My cat seems to be aware of situation; she keeps rubbing against me. She's previously been voted the worst-smelling cat in the world, this cat. She did a lot of campaigning, she studied the issues - really earned it.

Unrelatedly, we just bought some pill pockets to try and get her old-cat stuff into her without using a pill gun. And they're working really well. She loves them, and they're really easy to fold around the medicine and seal up - sort of cat-food play-dough. I totally recommend this strategy for cats who aren't paranoid about accepting treats. (The other cat, a deeply traumatized young man who's allergic to his own fur, has to be wrapped in a towel like a burrito and pilled by hand.) It's so much easier than fooling with the pill gun.

So, so, hyper, but too dizzy to move. I hate these pills.
It crawled back out under the door after me. And my cat jumped it and chewed it up. Aw, cat, look at you taking responsibility for your mistakes like that. Now if only you'd learn to operate the paper towels and bottle of enzymatic spray cleaner, maybe this house wouldn't smell so attractive to bugs in the first place.

The cat in question is a little more than a month from her seventeenth birthday, by the way - I just looked it up. She was born on April 27, 1994; we know this because her mother went into labor on Mom and Dad's bed while Richard Nixon's coffin was going into the ground on Mom and Dad's bedroom TV. I've always assumed that there was some sort of spiritual connection there. I wish I were half as agile as my ancient malevolent Republican president cat.

The apple cider vinegar smell is actually oddly pleasant, actually - I haven't been able to use it on my hair since the surgery. I kind of miss it; I'm just going to leave the cup sitting here.

...I was supposed to go back to work tomorrow, but I think I'm taking another day. My head now really hurts, and I have no idea how I'm going to get to sleep.
There is a hornet as big as a brain tumor lurching around my room.

It's just spry enough that I don't think I can safely grab it with a towel. I can't use the vacuum without waking up the whole house. So I'm out here sitting on the couch glaring at everything.

I stuck a glass of apple cider vinegar in there and ran. Vinegar seems to work pretty well for drowning flies in the kitchen, but I have no idea whether bedroom hornets go in for the stuff. Maybe I should leave some beer by the door? Beer also works on the flies. I think it's too strong to get stuck in honey.

I don't know how the hell it got in there, I haven't had my windows open for days. I heard my cat doing something outside my door about half an hour ago - did she bring it to me? Is this some sort of challenge? You're such a stupid cat, I hate you.
Today's is "I may have found a palliative for my elderly cat's chronic diarrhea." I gave her a couple of teaspoons of pumpkin puree with her food today, and I just examined her litter box and found an almost normal-looking little poop in there. We're both very happy about this; or at least, I assume that she's happy. Maybe she likes having diarrhea. Maybe her greatest joy in life is the sound of my melodious voice mumbling curses over the grinding of the steam cleaner. Maybe she doesn't like my slippers. I can understand that, they're Crocs.

I'm now trying to figure out how to make this into an easy-to-follow regimen, if her digestion hasn't gone back to its old ways after a day or two of this. Maybe I could mix up a big batch of pumpkinized cat food and freeze it in portions in an ice cube tray.

^ TV! I have lived mainly in places without TVs for about six years, so I’m frequently startled by the stuff that’s on there when I’m home.

My 15-year-old cat has been creating obstacles to foot traffic forcefully and with great conviction in many inappropriate places. The vet put her on a special prescription diet, which has thus far only caused her to space out her intestinal comments a little bit. I don’t think this is entirely due to a lack of bladder control, because she seems to be particularly interested in modifying the surface texture of bathmats, towels temporarily serving as bathmats due to actual bathmats all being in the washer, and a long carpet remnant we put in the hall.

What is her objection to movable floor covering? Is this what she has been trying to communicate with the campaign of plaintive meowing she began around her thirteenth birthday? Have we ignored her arguments for so long that she has chosen this politically-charged moment to take her movement to the streets? Maybe I should have said “movements” in that sentence, but it seemed forced. I have seriously been sitting here Googling phrases like “pants for cats.”

(Crossposted to SarahPin.com, Dreamwidth, and LiveJournal. You can leave comments at whichever.)

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