Monday, July 26, 2010

What Would You Do...?

I swear that I had a blog topic in mind that had more to do with things like reading, writing, romance, and other such pertinent readbytes, but then this happened. And I just couldn't write about anything else.

So instead of blogging about my wordcount (currently: 0—but I'm ahead of schedule, and don'tjudgeme) or about my eventual debut novel release (Blood of the Wicked, just in case you were, you know, curious), or about the various ways I like my heroes (much like I like my coffee: stuffed into a sack and slung over the back of a donkey by Juan Valdez). Instead, I'm opening the shutters, beating away the dust bunnies—but not the dustbun, as that would be cruel—and offering you lovely voyeurs a peek into my home.

This is life in the trenches, folks. Real gritty stuff. (Not really, but hey, life can be its own trench, right?)

I dare you to read this, to look at these pictures, and then tell me what you would have done...

Some background.

I hav—ahem, had three cats. From top to bottom, youngest to oldest, we had Lucian (the Princeling), Olivia (Princess Pantaloons), and Kabriel (the Tank).

Let me take a brief detour and describe to you these animals...

Kabriel—easily the largest of the three. Easily larger than two and three put together. The cat weighs about 25 pounds of solid freaking muscle. He's a tomcat all the way (and don't get me started on how adorable he was when he was just a baby ball of white dryer lint).

He's also a scaredy cat. Classic. He's so afraid of life that he spends all day hiding under the bed, and only comes out in the earliest morning to hunker in bed with us, or out in the evening. (At night, he stalks the halls like some predatory beast of prehistoric ages past...)

He's so afraid that when a car door slams out in the parking lot, he growls and flees to the safety of the bed. That's my guard cat.

Olivia—truly the princess of the lot. She's the most catlike of all our cats... well, except for the fact that she plays fetch and stares at the door all day until her man comes home. She's affectionate (when she wants to be) and sweet (when she wants something). Otherwise, hands off, please.

She won't have much to do with me, mind.

Lucian—It's so hard to be a little black cat. This princeling lounges all day, until he's decided that he's had enough and wants attention right bloody now. At which point, he jumps into the nearest lap and hunkers down for an extended stay.

The catch: If one of us is home alone, we're so not worth his time. But the instant someone else comes home, he comes to visit. Apparently, this one needs an audience of at least two to feel appreciated.

Then, we add Juno, our rabbit, and we've a full house. Plenty of furry love to go around, right?

Right?

Apparently not.

The mancandy is, shall we say, a bit of a soft touch. He can't turn away critters in need. We rescued Olivia from a horrendous situation, and picked up the two boys from cages at our vets' office. That said, the very last thing I expected when he got home from work yesterday were the following words...

"Don't be mad at me!"

...Followed closely by, "This is Charlotte."

Um... Excuse me?

I turn around, and there's this little white... thing in the mancandy's arms. I call it a thing because, let's face it, when one is dreading the result of looking too closely at a Tiny White Ball of Cute, one hesitates to name things.

Except he already did.

Apparently, this little girl was being dragged through the mall by several unpleasant kids. I'm not sure of the exact details—all I know is that I took one look into those soulful blue eyes (erm, the mancandy's, not hers), and I knew it was too late for me to decide anything.

She'd stolen his heart.

Well, that part of it that hadn't already been neatly claimed by the other four animals.

Siiiiigh.

What else could I do? I became a Field Marshal. A drill sergeant. With the speed of thought that would make any battle commander proud, I marshaled the troops (i.e. his attention), and laid down a battle plan. First, a bath. Then, a trip to the store for some emergency flea medication for all the animals—this little girl was crawling with them.

Then, a house cleaning session.

"But, but..."

The mancandy's pleas for mercy availed him nothing but my laughter and scorn! Ha ha ha ha! There would be no mercy for the weak of heart!

Well, what I actually mean to say is... No rest for the strong of compassion. We owed it to this little girl to give her a good home, a cleaned home, and one free of any fleas she carried in.

Oh, and her name really isn't Charlotte. She doesn't look like a Charlotte, and while we always name our animals after romance book characters, we couldn't agree on a name that suited. Until the mancandy suggested, "Hey. What about Naomi?"

It stuck. She's a Naomi.

So you tell me: could you have looked into these sweet blue eyes, hearing her purr so happily, watch her as she inched across the carpet to rest her chin trustingly in your palm, and made any other decision?

... I'm such a sucker.

Do you have pets? Can you imagine life without them once they've taken over your heart and home? And what do you name them? (Worth pointing out: Xaphod Beeblebrox was jokingly offered as a name, but I was afraid that she'd grow a second head just to spite us if we did...)

Oh, dear. Four cats and a rabbit? I'm her... I'm the Crazy Cat Lady.

Is this where I put on a funny hat and start laughing maniacally?

17 comments:

nymfaux said...

You're bunny is like fluff with a head!!!! It's SOOOO cute!!!!!! If I were in your place, I would absolutely have done the same thing!!!!

However, in my place I'm allergic, and live in an apartment that I want a deposit back, so I have to live vicariously through other people's pets.

Helen Lowe said...

Karina,

I have a 17 year old cat buddy called Ignatz (it's a long story, but think Ignatz & Krazy Kat), Iggy for 'everyday', who found us when he was about 5 weeks old. He was perched on a concrete bollard and telling us, quite loudly, that he was hungry and alone and the world was a whole lot bigger than he liked ... Anyway, he came home zipped up inside my man's jacket and here he has been over since (calls to petline, SPCA, etc all proven futile) even though we had two other cats at the time. So I probably couldn't have said no to Naomi either ...

Sara said...

I have a 3 year old black barn cat name Hendrix and a 5 year old son, but he only sometimes acts like an animal.
Anyway, when my son was younger and people would ask about pets he would say, "We have a cat. She's black. Her name is Hendrix, but not Jimi Hendrix cause he's dead." Don't know if this translates well, but it always makes everybody laugh, because you know they might actually confuse our cat with one of the greatest guitarists ever.
My husband's been trying to get us a dog, but we're cat people, one cat people. He knows this, but every once and a while he still tries to mezmorize me with his baby blues and get us a puppy.
I love my Hendrix, but between her, a five year old and, let's face it, a husband, I'm all animalled out.

Tura Lura said...

No cats for me; I'm allergic.

I do have three dogs though: Meekay, Ginger, and Patch. I love them all, though not always equally - like when Ginger escapes the dog lot and rolls in horse poop. Yeah, she's done that at least three times.

Meekay - the cutest ugly dog EVER! - is MY dog. He likes the hubby alright, but if he ever thought hubs was going to hurt me, he'd attack! Which would be scary if he wasn't half the size of his siblings. Also scared of his siblings.

Better than Patch, though. He's scared of his own shadow. Meekay is the only thing of which he ISN'T scared. We think he's pure Australian Shepard, but he came to us as a stray. (As did Meekay, though he's obviously a mutt.)

Ginger is the only female. Also an escape artist. She KNOWS she's cute. She looks like a smallish yellow lab because her mom was a beagle! ^_^

Okay, I think I've rambled on about my furbabies enough...

Kimberly Derting said...

We found a kitten in our backyard one morning and told our daughter (because we already had two cats and a dog): Do not get attached, this is not our cat. Do not name it. We are not keeping this cat!

By the end of the day the cat had a name (Princess Nala), a new homemade bed (a box with drawing all over it filled with toys), and our daughter had knit it a collar from her own tears (LOL!).

We now have three cats and a dog.

Great post!

Sharon S. said...

LOL! Right now, we have the perfect family dog (great agility dog too). April is a 6 year old Black Cocker Spaniel and she was born....on April 1st . Got her from a farm at 8 weeks old covered in ticks.

Then there is Drake and Josh, my 9 year old's ratties (you call them ratties cause that sounds better than rats ) They are 1 1/2 years old and are cool pets.

I have promised my two girls kittens this fall-ish. I am allergic, but it is what we moms do for our children's happiness.

Terri Garey said...

The cats are adorable, but I can't seem to get past the fact that you call your significant other "the mancandy"!! That is TOO funny!! :-D

I have two cats, an elderly Siamese who is utterly in love with my mancandy, and a pastel calico who is only in love with herself. *tee-hee*

We love them both dearly, of course, and how good of you to give Naomi a home. They're so hard to resist, aren't they?

Catie S (Book Bound) said...

She's adorable! I have one fat black cat. He's my buddy. He also thinks my bed is his & will have nothing to do with his bed.

Karina Cooper said...

I love the fact that everyone is so willing to talk about their pets!

They creep into our lives just like children too -- usually with less pain, I'll admit -- and then they're firmly (fur-mly? ouch, sorry!) ensconced in our hearts before we know it.

As an update, little Naomi slept with me all night long, and was there to try and nurse on my nose when I woke up. My heart is so claimed.

@Terri Garrey: It's kind of like arm-candy, but made out of man. ;)

Judy said...

We are animal lovers also. I have a 14 year old cat, Muffin. My son brought her home from a CB event, they were giving them away because the mother cat had moved them so many times because of children bothering them, several had died. She is something else. Everything has to center around her:) We also have one inside dog, Lady,a border collie, one bird, Dizzy, and two outside dogs, Rex and Harley.

Great story!!

Crystal said...

Your bunny is so cute and fluffy, I love it!
And Naomi is adorable, I wouldn't of been able to say no.
We have a black lab named Sidney and she is the most well behaved dog ever. We got her six months before my daughter was born and will be 6yrs next month, she is wonderful with the kids.
We're looking for a new little kitty to add to the family. I've always been more of a cat person, when I was younger we had A LOT of cats. I won't even say how many because then you'll be calling us crazy cat people. LoL But I worked at a vets in high school and lets just say I liked to take my work home with me.
Love the post!

LeslieJane said...

I love the story of the newest addition to your house. And let me guess, they rule the house, not you and the mancandy.

Unfortunately, I can not have pets where I am currently staying, which I miss tremendously. Growing up, I think Mom made sure we had a cat, just so Dad would not continuously bring one home. We had Pretty Kitty, but had to leave her in the States when Dad got stationed to Scotland (strict 6 month quarenteen, not fair to Pretty). But no fear, a cat moved into our new house the same day we did. VERY friendly, but never could figure out where she came from. So,2 and a half years later, Outboard (she purrs like one) came back to the States with us. And this is a cat who thought she was a dog, sat up and begged, walked on a leash, and absolutely LOVED to ride in the car.

And when I first moved out and could have pets, I have had Liebe, Ferrari, Splotches and Juno. Juno liked to sucknurse on my ear. Was in the bath one time, and he was so content sucking on my ear didn't even notice I had submerged over half his body in the bath. When I finaly pulled him away from my ear, he sure noticed then. Not too happy with me.

Oh, I miss them. Will have to find a new place that allows cats, then I con be "The Cat Lady"

Patricia Lynne said...

I have no pets at the moment. my apartment is a tuna can and there's no room for even a small fishtank (all surfaces are occupied with stuff) but once my bf and I get a bigger place, yup, there will be animals. most likely a dog, cat and rat, probably some fish, who knows. I love animals and that's why I never visit shelters because I will want to take them ALL home. but I can't. *sigh* so for the moment, I settle with animal love from my friends' pets. =^.^=

Melissa said...

I knew he wouldn't be in trouble with a pseudo name like mancandy. :)

I have had animals all my life. Currently I have 2 very large dogs. One is one my cousin had and my mom said yes to while looking pleadingly at me. I couldn't say no. He was my sweet cousin and I miss him a lot. This dog doesn't get along with her dog and my dog loves her so... Anyway... I've been pricing XL dog beds and comparing them to HUMAN furniture with close dimensions and guess which one is cheaper! Can't believe that. So, I guess what I am saying is that I can sympathize. :)

Cylver said...

Karina, your kitties are beautiful! We have one big, huge ultra-fluffy yellow tomcat named Oscar. Not because he's a grouch, but because we brought him home on Academy Awards night! He's definitely the king of his castle. Fortunately he doesn't try to bring us birds or mice as presents. About the only thing he stalks are the dust bunnies under the bed!

GB (formerly JD) said...

Only when you wear 35 cardigans at once with your hat and maniacal laugh can you truly be called a Crazy Cat Lady. :)

I adopted my furkid from a foster home about 4 years ago. I knelt among the kitties and only he came up to me to say hi. I've been tempted to get another, but I don't think he'd be very happy to share my lap.

Ash Wolf said...

Naomi is so pretty. I would have taken her in.

At this time, we have three cats that are actual pets, a dog and then we have wild cats that run the moment they see us but still eat the food we put out. I'm trying to coax this kitten who is currently living in the burn pile to trust me. It's slow going.
Samantha is a fat black cat who every now and then doesn't mind you petting her. She originally belonged to John, my stepdad, before we moved in. Rudy the dog also belonged to John. He's had Rudy sense puppyhood. Bubba (short for Bubbalicious) is a grey and white tabby cat who hates to be petted but doesn't mind rubbing himself against you. Lightning (Bubba's brother from the same litter) is completely white. They always seem to lay about in that order.
I was a nursemaid for Bianca (an all white cat who was only two at the time) when she birthed Lightning and Bubba six years ago. She had them right in my lap! She had two kittens in my lab before we were able to move her to the bathtub to birth three more. All survived. When we moved we had to get give away three of the kittens and Bianca (she had become a jealous b**** after the kittens were born). Plus John's allergic to cat hair. That's why all cats are outside.

Crazy Cat Ladies Rule!!! :)