Tag Archives: Animals

Woe is me: a day in the life of Felix the cat

I had my 7th graders start a creative writing assignment today about the life of their pet, from the animal’s point of view. As an example, I wrote one from Felix the cat’s perspective.

I often wonder what my cat is thinking when she does certain things. Her behavior continues to baffle me, but if I had to guess, this is what must be going through her mind on a daily basis:

6:58 a.m. My food bowl is empty. I’m going to die in this place. There is no hope for me anymore. Goodbye sweet world. Meow.

7:21 a.m. That Julia girl finally put more Meow Mix in my bowl. I crept into her bedroom while she slept and stared a hole into the side of her head until she finally woke up and fed me. I’m saved. At least until the bowl is empty again.

7:45 a.m. She’s left me again, mumbling something about “work” on her way out the door. Not sure what this “work” business is, but I don’t like it. I’d rather she just stay home with me all day and pet me to my heart’s content. Or at least until she pets me the wrong way, in which case I’ll be forced to bite her and run away.

8:36 a.m. I’ve noticed that Julia just cleaned my litter box. I’m not sure what to make of all this empty space inside the box, so I think I’ll just poop on the floor instead.

9:01 a.m. I’m ready for a nap but there’s no suitable place for me to lay. I think I will just curl up inside this tiny box that is two sizes too small.

5:01 p.m. My eight-hour nap was great but I’m not feeling too well. I think I swallowed some of my fur while I was bathing earlier. I feel the urge to throw up, but I’m not sure where I should do it. I don’t want to upset Julia. I think I will throw up in her shoes; she will appreciate that.

6:03 p.m. Julia has come home from “work.” She wasn’t happy with the gift I left in her shoes; I don’t understand how I have failed her.

10:35 p.m. Julia has abandoned me and gone to bed. There are a few kibbles gone from my food bowl since she last filled it so I’m going to have to stare at her while she’s sleeping and meow all night until she gets up and fills it again. I think I will die before she wakes.

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Felix the cat: probably the most disgusting living creature ever

I don’t understand how one cat can be so disgusting. I swear, you’d think I was the crazy cat lady who had 12 cats the way my apartment cruds up with cat grossness.

I’ll go into the bathroom, where her litter box is, and you’d think she shit all over everything just from the smell alone. She is probably the dumbest cat I’ve ever encountered; despite how clean I keep her litter box, she used to always insist on pooping over the side onto the floor. I have since reduced the likeliness of that action by finally putting a lid on the box, but she’ll still stick her butt out of the opening every once in awhile (usually after I’ve JUST CLEANED IT, so it’s litter-ally {get it? haha, litter} fresh and clean with no poop or anything in it) and poop onto the floor. And even when she does use the box like a normal cat and shits inside, she doesn’t cover it up. You know, how cats are supposed to push litter over top of everything to cover it and make it smell less and generally make it less gross? Yeah, she doesn’t do that. Instead, she’ll get out of the box and push around the puppy pad that’s on the floor (for catching those stray turds), mushing it into a big ball as if that’s accomplishing anything. Maybe she’s wiping her paws, but she needs to figure this out, because I’m tired of coming home and getting hit with a wall of poop stink, and then having to go into the bathroom and push the litter over her poop myself. Not my job, Felix. Figure it out.

I also don’t get how she can shed nearly as much as she actually does. Even in winter. Like, hello, you need that fur, don’t you? She hates being brushed but I do it as often as she’ll allow it, not that it’s really accomplishing anything, though, because she still sheds like it’s 1,000 degrees and it’s her job. I am constantly sweeping and cleaning to remove the tufts of white fur from absolutely everything in my apartment: couches, towels, all my clothes and shoes, curtains, stove tops (how does it even get up there?!), you name it, there’s probably cat hair on it at some point or another. I just don’t understand it. You would think for a cat who’s constantly licking her butt and cleaning herself she wouldn’t be anywhere close to as disgusting as she actually is.

I don’t ever want her to die but man, when that day comes, I will have so much more time for literally anything else because I won’t be constantly cleaning up after her. And my life will no longer be covered in cat hair. Until then, I guess I will continue to deal with her filth because, goddamnit, I love that cat.

She likes to sleep in the basket where I keep my sneakers. Since I've banned her from my room when I'm not home (after she threw up in my shoes), she has to find other ways to leave her grossness all over my belongings.

She likes to sleep in the basket where I keep my sneakers. Since I’ve banned her from my room when I’m not home (after she threw up in my shoes), she has to find other ways to leave her grossness all over my belongings.

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Saying goodbye to a piece of our family

My sister came over tonight and cried on my couch after just having put her cat to sleep, and even though it wasn’t my cat, Cinnamon had been apart of our family for over 17 years, so I sat on the couch and cried with her. We knew she was old and sickly, so this wasn’t a total shocker, but I honestly wasn’t prepared to come home from spin (knowing full well my sister was coming over tonight, anyway) to this news.

I feel so sad for her, and for Cinnamon, because it isn’t easy saying goodbye to a furry best friend. I always joke that with my luck, my bastard cat will never die, she’ll just keep shitting on my floors for the rest of my life. But when that day finally comes and Felix is no more, I’m not sure how I will manage. Pets may not be as important to some people as other humans are, but when they’re in your lives for that amount of time, and they become apart of your family, it isn’t easy to let them go, even if you know it’s what’s best for them. I know there are varying degrees of loss and sadness (and I’ve been quite fortunate enough to not have experienced the most extreme cases of it), but any loss in general, when it affects the heart, is enough to make adjusting to life without that person (or beloved pet) almost unbearable. It’s crazy to think how, eventually, with time, these emotional wounds do finally heal (though we may never be the same again, it does get easier) and that we’re able to continue living our lives while that other individual no longer can. Life is such a funny, fragile concept, and I’m not sure I’ll ever really understand it, but I think I can understand that gut-wrenching feeling you get when you realize you have to go on without someone (because I’ve been there, in other ways). It takes a lot of strength to accept loss and move on, and anyone who has ever experienced it, big or small, will know what I mean when I say some days you just want to cry. And that’s okay. There will eventually be other days that you can look back on that person or pet’s life and know they lived a good one, regardless of how short or long they thrived, and be happy you had them in your life in the first  place. It’s not an easy place to get to, but just know it’s possible, and never give up the fight to get there.

I realize it might be ridiculous to write a eulogy for a cat, but I think if it makes a difference to just one person (that one person being my sister), then it wasn’t ridiculous at all, it was completely worth it. So here it goes:

Cinnamon was a good and loyal cat, one who preferred time alone to sleep in the sunlight, but who (especially in her old age) also enjoyed a good snuggle and back scratch from anyone who would give her the time of day (which was everyone). She loved sleeping squished in cardboard boxes and licking the water from a dripping faucet. In her younger days, she liked to sleep on people’s heads and stay as far away from Felix the cat as she could. In her wiser days, she preferred to curl up on a soft blanket somewhere and stay as far away from Felix the cat as she could. She was a pet and a best friend, and she will be forever loved and missed.

RIP Cinnabunner

RIP Cinnabunner

 

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Shark wrestling (and 5 other sea creatures I’d like to meet)

I defeated a shark.

Albeit, a baby one. But a shark nonetheless.

Sharkie and me.

As a diver and avid water enthusiast, I’ve always been fascinated with sharks. Sure, I’m terrified as much as the next guy, but I’ve always been strangely obsessed with things that terrify me (hence my all-consuming obsession with horror, gore and all things Halloween).

And when it comes to sharks, the more up-close-and-personal I can get with them, the better (unless they’re sneaking up on me to have me as dinner). Now, I’ve been diving around sharks before, and I’m sure there have been plenty of times they have been lurking below me as I frolicked at the surface, but there’s nothing more exciting than coming into contact with one (in a good way, not a “my-leg-just-got-ripped-off-by-a-shark” kind of way).

Shark attack!

Catching the six-footer off the coast of Key West two years ago was awesome. I wish I could find the pictures to show them off to you now, but you’ll just have to trust me. But we cut the line before I even had a chance to say goodbye, let alone touch it. So catching Sharkie (as I’ve dubbed him) last week was quite exhilarating; here was a baby shark that was big and strong enough to put up a good fit but small enough to come on board for a quick photo op. As terrifyingly awesome as it was to hold the thrashing beast in my bare hands, there are still several other sea-beasts I’d like to encounter before I croak. In no particular order:

A whale. They may be gentle-ish creatures (to us, not plankton), but they are so massive and hard to come across it would be a shame never to meet one. Plus I could probably even have a conversation with one if I channel Dory from Finding Nemo.

Dolphins. I swam with dolphins on several occasions (thank you travel & tourism), and it’s one of the coolest things I’ve ever done. But I want to get cozy with a wild dolphin. I’ve tried to no avail, but I know one day it will happen. And when it does, they will push me out of the water with just their nose. I’m sure of it.

Sharks. I know I’ve already encountered several sharks, both above the ocean and below it. But until I encounter every species (okay, maybe not every species of shark, but at least all the really cool ones), this one will still be on my list. With a giant, man-eating great white at the top of the list.

The Loch Ness Monster. I know this one doesn’t technically reside in the sea (if it resides at all, which I believe it does), but it’s too noteworthy not to include. I want to dive Loch Ness and come face to face with the elusive monster and hope it doesn’t swallow me whole.

A giant squid. I’m not talking a tiny little blob of a creature that is smaller than a boat or one of those dinky ones that you see at the aquarium. I’m talking legendary Kraken-size, like, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea proportions. I want to go down in my little submarine with Jules Verne and be overtaken by a giant squid whose eyeball alone could swallow the city of New York. And then I will write the best-selling, Nobel-prize-winning novel 21,000 Leagues Under the Sea and retire with (most) of my body parts still intact.

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“My” dog is better than your dog

I love dogs.

I remember my dog Ninja. She was my best friend growing up. My dad got her before I was even born, and she died at about the same age I was when I broke my arm (clearly not a lucky age for either of us).

Since Ninja, there has never been another dog to come into my life (and stay). One time I got close- my dad and I adopted Yager, a Pitbull mix. But we decided we couldn’t give him the time he deserved and, after a magical week together, we had to take him back to the shelter- I hope someone has since found him and taken him home to a loving environment, because, despite what most people think about Pitbulls, he was the sweetest, funniest, most adoring dog you’ll probably find these days.

But since I’m forever stuck with my neurotic cat, and not a loving, cuddly dog, I’m content (for now) to live vicariously through my brother and his awesome bulldog Vader.

Now, I still have yet to meet Vader in person (oh, the difficulties of living states away from your family), but I’ve seen pictures and videos and heard stories and one look at this dog’s face is enough to make you melt.

I mean, for real, look at that face.

So what’s my purpose, here? Well, obviously it’s to gloat about how awesome my nephew Vader is and to make you go “awww” and maybe even shed a tear of pure love, but mainly, I want Vader to be voted Bulldog of the Year.

And he’s already in the lead (I know, too cool, I’m about to be “related” to a celebrity), but he needs your help to keep him there.

So click here now, and vote for him.

Or I’ll sic Vader’s friend, Darth Maul, on you.

 

UPDATE: Vader won the contest and was named Bulldog of the Year! Thanks to everyone who voted. 🙂

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