I have invited you to let me tell you about Tom, my amazing friend of the feline specie. Love for the feline specie comes from the story of Peter Rabbit and Mr. Mcgregor wherein the white tabby is grooming herself by a pool of water. Later I collected insects and rocks growing up to becoming a chemist with a major oil company and later a college chemistry instruc-tor. Moving to other cities, family, etc. I lost contact with that field. Among other things, I have performed as a singer, speaker, museum docent, book recorder, newspaper reader for the blind; worked to establish a lighting business and got a mas-ters degree in radio/tv production and performance. My latest work is writing popular fiction, novels. I will try to entertain with stories about Tom and what I've learned about cats.


This is for all of you who love cats, who live with one, or more,. It is also for those of you who value friendship and enjoy the company of others. I welcome you into my life, about my cat and me. It may be we have other like interests and special loves than cats and friendship, be-cause I like to share, at times, some special insights, or some degree of enlightenment that may spring upon me. So, please join me for a little part of your day.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Tom, a common tabby but a noble cat

The Christmas Cat

Tom is all ready for Christmas.  He has had a warm bath and is so clean and feels so fresh that he is planning to go caroling tonight.  Now Tom is very well behaved.  He does not knock the ornaments off the Christmas tree or jump into the tree or attack it in any manner.  The fact is, he mostly ignores it.  At first he was a bit disturbed when the lights were turned on, and at the same time a small sound of carols began to play.  The sound is small and sllightly tinny, not like the fuller sound of radio or television.  But he soon got used to it.  I always turn off the carols when I'm not going to stay near and listen.  With his usual nonchalance, he stalks off to sit upon one of the different chairs I have just put in the living room, to replace a worn one.  He appreciates the new and different and can't wait to initiate it to his own comfort.

I had always heard that cats do not like to be in water  Then not long ago, I heard someone say they knew a cat or two who actually swam in water.  Now that seems to be contradictory to cat nature.  So when I bathe a cat, I always prepare for the charming creature's struggle to get out of the water.  You may find this helpful when you want to bathe your cat.  If you have double sinks in the laundry room, or the kitchen, this arrangement is ideal.  Fill one side with warm water and Woolite and the other side with warm rinse water.  Have one or two large towels (beach towel) at hand.  {Or wait until summer, and with the hose fill a bucket with water.}  Be brave.  Place the cat in the Woolite solution and rub the fur, keeping the face out of it.  Then place feline in the rinse side and rub the fur free of the suds.  Remove cat from basin and place on towel and rub briskly.  When as dry as you can rub the fur, place the cat alone in the utulity room, or bathroom, and close the door.  Give her, or him, time for grooming in his, or her, own unique way.  Then let your friend out when sufficiently dry, and enjoy the satisfaction on your cat's face.  Maybe, you'll be rewarded with a definite purr.  Merrie Christmas to you and your favorite fur ball.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tom has been most affectionate lately.  Just before Thanksgiving my back spasmed, and I had a dreadful night.  Maybe you know such nights when you are so uncomfortable you just can't find a way to relax and drift into that glorious sleep which must keep you smiling in contentment all night long.  It was the day before Thanksgiving, and I planned to call and cancel my part in the family plans for dinner.  Before I could move, the phone rang.  My daughter had to tell me she could not get time off for Christmas, except for the one day. As she lives in Texas, she couldn't come to Oklahoma and get back to Texas in one dayto go to work and still enjoy Christmas.  "Well, I won't make it to Thanksgiving dinner," I moaned.  Back to bed to try again for a few minutes of sleep.  The phone rang again.  My chiropractor concerned about considerable tightness at my last visit.  He is thoughtful, calling frequently to check on my status.  (He even visits his patients when they are in the hospital for any other purpose.) 

After doing my best to state the symptons I had suffered without sounding too "done in", he instructed me to come in the following Monday for another back check -- like a booster shot.  Back to bed just to be quiet and try to sleep.  As the day went on, I succeeded in putting in three naps and felt better by evening and prepared myself a light meal.  During the dayTom curled up at my back during the naps and jumped on my lap when I got up to sit for a while. 

Now Tom knows my bed is off limits for him.  But when I lie down any time during the day (these times are most infrequent) he knows.  He has a strong psychic sense.  I can count any low number, and he will find me and climb over me, often shoving his head under my empty hand to have his jaws and chin rubbed.  But eventually, without response from me, will back up against my back and curl up and vibrate.  Tom's purr is a steady vibration and a suggestion of a real purr.  Whydon't I shove him off then?  Because, I don't want to wake up enough to expend the effort.

The end result of that experience was that Thanksgiving morning, having slept some more during the night, I felt much better, only slightly weak, but not too much to attend our traditional get-together.  The one I go out of town to the home of another of my children.  Christmas they come to me.  For Tom's part, he has followed up by continuing his affectionate attention.  When I sit down to do something, he is there for my lap.  That includes work at the computer and his paw reaching for my right hand typing.  I can't resist taking his paw, holding it loosely.  He lets me hold it.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Bandit Cat

There is a large, long-hair gray cat that roams in my yard at night.  He, or so I think he is, comes up to the patio door and eats Tom's food that i put out at night.   It is food left over from his earlier second meal of the day.  I put it on the table on the patio or on the doorstep hoping he will eat it before the bandit sneaks up to eat it.  Now to get the picture, there is a wide ditch at the foot of my property which the city widened from a small natural stream to control flooding. If I see the bandit I open the door.  He runs off, but will go to the fence at the back of the yard  and crouch by the gas meter, just waiting his next chance.  If I chase him, he will duck under the cyclone fince and flee down the ditch.  Tom, during this?  Well, I find him sitting by on the patio in his "watch" mode.  He does seem to appreciate my intervention in ridding the marauder from his territory.

Lately, however, I have put the leftover food dish out on the step.  Tom staying near the house has been able to finish his meal.  I take the dish in afterward.  During the colder nights Tom is eating more, and growing in his winter coat.

Thanksgiving Cat

This is the day we gather at my daughter's house for the day and the meal.  That means I leave food for Tom, and contrary to his normal routine, leave him outside with his food out with him.  Now this will be a challenge, because he prefers to be indoors during the daytime.  If I don't take him by sur-prise, he will run for sanctuary under the bed, which it too wide to get hold and pull him out.  So wish me luck to get him outside; otherwise, he is in until I return.  I am two hours away from home and sometimes stay overnight and come hom the next morning.

Does your cat have a Thanksgiving dinner from your own menu on this day?  Turkey may be a fav-orite item for your pet, but do cut the meat off the bone.  You don't want a splinter swallowed to pierce the intestines.  You know, fish is a favorite for many felines, although I've had one who dis-dained fish and loved beef.  Some love liver and grow huge on a steady diet of it.  Tom's favorite is Tuna, so that's what he'll get.  A great day of thanks to you all and to your kitties.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

TomaCommonTabby but a NobleCat

Tom has become more affectionate than usual these days. When I sit down to read, and more so when I sit at the computer to download e-mail or compose something, he appears from somewhere I did not see him. All I know is a bit fur-covered body with a head is on my lap. The paws are heavy clinging, claws pricking into my legs, and the head is burrowing under my arms pushing them off the keyboard. I usually don't get relieved, until he has had his measure of attention. He especially like to have his jaws rubbed, which i understand most cats do. However, most of the ones I have known put most of their ardor into responding to their backs being smoothing petted. Tom likes his jaws, chin, and chest getting the rubdown that he drools out the mouth -- on me, which I don't enjoy. Another aspect of this, wherein he does not get petted much, is the occasional nap I try to take. I could about count to ten counts, and feel the heavy paws come down beside me and climb up on my side to hang over on me, heavy enough to depress my breathing. I have said he is heavy, not com-pared to some cats. He just has a high density. I have read that cats are psychic. This one has his senses tuned to my movements, and is as depend-able as an alarm system. So pet your own cats and feed them on time.

Sunday, October 7, 2012


We are having the first real change to chill October weather.  Warm in the daytime to a chill after the sun goes down.  Tom sits down at the patio door to go out a little before the light fades down to a near-dark twilight.  It is his habit, first of all, to look out the double lighted exit from the glass that does not open to assess the wild life in his sights.  When he is sure it suits him, he moves to the door and sits patiently.  It isn't always that he is patient.  If I am in the same room watching TV and am en-grossed in the program, he rears up and claws on the back of my upholstered chair.  He knows this will get a roar and a rise from me, and I will move to DRIVE him out.  Then he moves to the door and is put out. 

Every pet needs to be, mostly, an outdoor creature and not lose contact with his freedom in nature and the ability to protect himself.  I've had to compromise with Tom, because his first owner worked in the daytime; and the only time the owner was at home was at night, so that was when Tom had his outing.  There is a bandit cat that steals Tom's food, if I put the remainder of his early dinner out to early the scruffy gray cat steals it.  Timid Tom seems to let the bandit get away with it.  I have better luck if I wait until I close down for the night.  Setting his food dish out then, he is hungry enough to finish it off himself.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Tom, the Timid

Despite Tom's size and strength, he has a timid, perhaps shy or a "prove you are friendly" aspect.  He is larger than average weighing 10.5 pounds with long forelegs and paws, and a long ringed tail, which moves and curls constantly, except when he is in deep sleep.  His paws are big and white with pink pads, and he loves to flex them when on my lap.  Yes, it's catlike to do so.  But when I yell, "Ouch" he is more careful.  He often lays with his forelegs spread forth in the position of the sphinx of Eguptl; and when he gets up from a nap he stretches his hind legs like a ballet dancer.  His timidity,however, is more for men tha;n for women.  The women of my family, he favors more by letting them pick him up  and pet him.  In times of holiday gatherings he hides under the bed.

He is prescient and comes on the scene when I sit down to work at the computer, where he is now, so thies comments complete today's blog, says Barb.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tom, the Timid

Despite being a larger feline, Tom has a streak of timidity, running from the doorbell, especially if a woman, allowing them to pick him up and pet him.  This refers to the women of my family, who all have, or have had, cats as their intimate friends.  You wouldn't expect such a hesitant attitude from a big 10.5-pound large cat with long fore and hind legs and a long ringed tail.  His paws are also large and he throws weight behind his paws and tail.  After naps he stretches legs and the hind leg stretch is like that of a ballet dancer. His paws are large with large spreading toes and pack a wallop as does the lash of his tail.  He lets me lift him more now after three years living with me than he did, but really does not like to be picked up, and struggles to get down if it takes too long for me to put him where I want him (when he doesn't follow on his own).  During holiday gatherings he hides under the bed.  This cat is prescient and appears out of nowhere when I sit down at the computer, or to read.  He has found me here and is in the way of my hands, so I end today's report. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

"Tom", a Common Tabby, but a Noble Cat


This is for all of you who love cats, who live with one, or more,.  It is also for those of you who value friendship and enjoy the company of others.  I welcome you into my life, about my cat and me.  It may be we have other like interests and special loves than cats and friendship, be-cause I like to share, at times, some special insights, or some degree of enlightenment that may spring upon me.  So, please join me for a little part of your day.

Tom came to me as the third owner, or mistress of ythis feline.  His first owner was a man who had to move away and gave him to my daughter, who gave him to me when she was going through a divorce.  The first thing he did when let loose in my house was go into the open fire-place and climb up out of sight into the chimney.  He did not come down out of there, although my daughter called and called him.  Time elapsed.  We called a chimney sweep service, and got only the answering service.  We left a message.  Pardon our ignorance as to what the construc-tion of the inside of a chimney is.  We thought Tom might be trapped in a space he could not get down from.  The dark of night descended and no Tom appeared.  Day arrived.  We went out on an errand.  Tom came out from the fireplace covered in black soot and ran upstairs and under a bed with a white lace spread that touched the floor, leaving a black path on the white lace. 

I dragged him out from under the bed and took him to the nearest fawcett to clean off the soot.  The chimney service called and received an explanation of the previous night's call. 

Before I solved the problem, Tom had entered the chimney two more times the same weekend.  My daughter left the classic tuxedo tabby in his new home, and the first thing I did, after intro-ducing him to food and water was to go out on a Monday morning and buy a firplace screen that fit against the brickwork of the fireplace and duct tape it to the bricks on both sides.  I had to place the fan-shaped brass cover in front of that.  Tom jumped on the hearth and looked it over carefully, but could not devise a way into the opening to jump up onto some ledge inside.  I often wonder how high the ledge was in the chimney.  For a while he looked for some dark place to go to, but in a week or two he adjusted to his new home and gradually stopped paying attention to the fireplace.  Much more followed.