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.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Tom, Sensitive to My Illness

I can't call nosebleed an illness, but it does confine one to a reclining position for a time.  Tom, ever ready to help me by lying down beside me when I rest always senses when I am down.  I can often count to ten, and he is with me before I get to ten.  I am now past the last one.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Tom's Comfort Zone

I apologize for not keeping up with my blogs due to physical treatments now over.  To resume, Tom's comfort zone is on my bed.  If I am not there, it is on my pillow -- bed made up and neat.  Otherwise, Tom is often upstairs on one of the twin beds with white lace spreads.  His dusty fur leaves a  dusty, dingy darkened spot.  However, the longer I live the more I tolerate small error to keep my days as simple and easy on me as possible.

Noble Cat Tom's Winter Antics

Severe cold, snow and icy streets and roads outside affects our behavior.  So our pets also react.
The big, strong Tom in my house has been able to go out in the evening for about four hours, but
the below freezing temps at night I do not impose on him.  He comes in when I turn out the lights.

Suddenly, for no reason he began racing through the rooms.  At first, I thought, as usual he had seen a bird or a squirrel move around the house and had run to watch from another window.  Not this time.
He did not stop but raced through the rooms several times.  He must have concluded,  "I need to exercise more." 

Another new thing happened one morning as I was going through my morning ablutions.  He sat upon the counter next to the lavatory and watched the drops fall from the dripping faucet.  Call the plumber again after the last time?  No.  He watched for a few moments, and then put out his paw trying to catch each drop.  Not satisfied with this failure, he tried to bite the drops.  I expected he would then lick the faucet for the water, but not so.  It wasn't water to him, but a game.  I wonder
how he would tell the story.

Yet another game, not so new, but a bit different.  He jumped to the edge of the bathtub between the shower curtain and the plastic sheet next to the shower and delighted himself lashing his tail against the plastic.  A cat's got to beat up something, even with his tail, to show his prowess as a fighter. 

New Game for Tom and Fun Drumming

 A long. cold February.  We all suffered a degree of cabin fever; no less did Tom, the Noble Cat.\
He became rather feisty at times, and attacked a drippi9ng fawcett.  While I make my ablutions for the day in my bathroom with the wall mirror, Tom at times leaps upon the counter to open a cabinet
door.  Well, the fawcett does have a steady drip.  An inveterate game player (usually at my expense) he tried to catch the falling drop with his paw.  No touching the water didn't put him off  Failing to
catch the unruly object, he did the next best thing.  He bit it with his mouth.  No, he didn't swallow
it or put his tongue on the end of the fawcett to swallow the drops.  It was like a small, bouncing ball to him.  Another morning, after exhausting that game, he jumped on the edge of the bathtub between the shower curtain and the inside plastic shower protection.  His strong tail then proceeded to beat a rhythm against the plastic layer.  I should name him Tom, the drummer.

You Know This Isn't My Cheese

I didn't know cats liked cheese.  I found out Tom the Noble Cat does.  He came to me when I unwrapped a package of Dutch Garden Smoked Gouda.  I gave him a small sliver.  He took it from my fingers, ate it, and begged for more.  Since then, he shows up waiting for cheese, which I like well enough to more or less keep it in supply.  He has eaten cheddar, and I thought I had fed him Swiss.  However, last week I gave him a bit of Jarlsberg Lite Swiss.  He didn't eat it.  I though the piece was too big and broke it up.  He didn't eat it where he mostly licks it up from the floor.  So I put it into his food dish on top of his dry Friskies.  Next day, it was still there with the Friskies mostly gone.  Later in the day I passed by his dish, and the cheese was there.  When I passed almost time for his canned meat, the two little Swiss bites were carefully laid outside the dish.  Very careful of him it was.  He is mostly a bit careless with his eating enough to find bits dropped from his mouth to the floor as he eats his meals in several sessions. 

This was his silent lesson for me, "You know I prefer the kind without the holes."

Defeating Tom's little games

It has been a while since the last news of Tom, the common tabby but a noble cat.  Getting rid of weeds has taken so much time.  The last week Tom has not been as noble as before.  He had been very cooperative, speaking when he wanted something and sitting by the door when he wanted out.
For about a week now he has reverted to psychological games.  Before this Tom, I didn't know
many games cats play.  This one likes to challenge me to stay in when it is his time to go out in the evening -- just about dark.  He had been lying in one of his favorite spots in the house.  I would tell him it was time to go out and play, enjoy the fresh evening air, etc.  He most often got up and went to the kitchen to have another go at his dinner to finish it.  That is, until he caught me off guard and fled out of sight.  Then a time or two, I found him either upstairs or in another of his reclining spots.  I spoke kindly, took him by the forepaws, and walked him on his hindlegs to the door, opened it, and usually he went right out. 
But last night while I watched an old not seen Steve McQueen move, Bullitt, on TV, Tom hid under the king sized bed, too wide and low for me to reach him.  I didn't want to go through the chase and return, so I closed the doors to the room but left it loose enough for his paw to open it.  At my bedtime I heard no sounds of protest, so I went to sleep in another room. 
Something touched my fingertip.  I jerked it away, but then again a wet lick to the fingertip.  I realized it was Tom intending to wake me.  I spoke.  He marched to his feed dish.  I let him finish up the cat meat and then marched him to the door on two legs.  That was pretty clever of me, because he can't then double up his hind parts to kick and scratch, but has to step and slide along, until I get him to and through the door.  Afterward, I looked at the clock.  It was 12:15 am.  Went back to sleep until 9:oo this morning.  It felt great.

Tom's New Discovery

I have submitted more blogs than appear since February this year.
However, here is my latest, and I will try to rewrite the ones I remember .

Tom, the feline friend who keeps track of my every move. joins me in the morning while I begin
the day with a shower, dressing, and make up.  Sometimes he investigates what I have on the
counter, opens the cabinet door atop the counter and may either sniff inside or go in, circle around and come out.  Then he crosses the counter to the other end where a bar of facial soap lies in the
soap dish.  He has been nosing into it, and apparently likes the smell.  It is an olive oil based soft
soap and has a pleasing odor, unlike perfume, but most enjoyable to me.  Tom likes it so much, that
now he has rubbed his face in it.  Than -- can you believe this -- he has turned the other side of his
face and rubbed that side onto the soap also. 

I have to appreciate his sense of smell.

Now, somehow it didn't get onto the blog, but Tom has been playing psychological games for the
last two weeks.

He used to sit by the door when it was almost totally dark expecting me to let him out.  Now, he
seeks to challenge my authority as his owner and provider.  He disappears before that time to go
out.  I usually find him and flush him out from under furniture or behind chairs and sofas.  He may
run off to finish off the food left in his dish.  This I allow, but if I don't follow up at that time, he
takes off again to hide away somewhere.  I close off the bedroom door, so he can't hide under
the king size bed where I can't reach him.  I have learned to take hold of him by his forelegs and
dance him to the door, hold him there while I open the door.  By that time he is usually ready to go

My daughter, his former owner has been with me now for two nights, and he has taken advantage
 of the circumstance.  Last night he fled under the wide bed before I could close off the room.
I lay down to sleep.  Of course, when I was beginning to drift I felt a light touch of a tongue on my
middle finger.  I didn't move.  Again was the touch.  I opened my eyes to see Tom sitting quietly looking at me.  When I moved, he went into the kitchen in the dark.  His food dish had been
removed from its place on the floor to prevent entrance by roaches.  Then he went into the
room and sat down across from the patio door.  We looked at each other after I got a loght on
and the door unlocked.  At last, I had to try to get to him, but he fled again and dashed up the
stairs, but apparently, avoided going into my daughter's room. 

I returned to try to sleep, but stirred up, it took some time to quiet down again.  Then I hear a
single meow.  He had positioned himself above my head.  This time on my knees I seized his
forelegs, boosted him onto a chair while I got to my feet.  Then I marched him to the door, got
it unlocked again, and pushed his rear end out.

With the lost sleep, I find my patience short today.  But I am still Barbara Lockett, Author.Amazon, author page Barbara Lockett, The Hidden City 

Tom's Welcome Home

I spent a whole week in Florida on a beach vacation.  Began  walking and soon gathered up a mile of
exercise to and from the beach house.  St. George's Island is quiet and a nice place to be without the
need of accomplishing something that takes too much time.

The town of Appalachacola across the two causeways is a removal in time with its post Civil War
store front , one and two story buildings downtown.  There is a wonderful coffee shop with special
coffees you don't have at Starbuck's or Java Dave's.  There is a time-past soda fountain where you can
get "phosphates".  My daughter asked me what a phosphate was.  I answered in soda fountain language, not the chemical description.  We explored all the gift shops, galleries, and restaurants.

The residential areas were worth driving up and down the streets to see the well-kept houses of
the later 1800's.

Then we enjoyed the indulgences of the great City of Dallas and the marvelous chefs that run
the fine dining establishments there.

I got home last Tuesday and entered the house calling out for Tom, the cat I left behind in the house to be fed by my good neighbor.  When I am here, Tom is not allowed to stay in at night (other than
for storms and extreme cold).  However, to spare my neighbor I allowed Tom to stay inside, unless
he made it clear he wanted out. 

Well, I got no answer from Tom.   Did I expect him to come bounding to me to rube against my
ankles?  No, I know his ways.   Later, as I inspected the house and raised some of the window
shades, there he was.  He didn't let me out of his sight for days.  His intuition is still working as to
where I am and what I am doing.  He has climbed upon my desk making sure I give him  the best
publicity in my account of his welcoming presence after a period of 10 days apart.

Tom, a common tabby, but a noble cat

Congratulate me. I finally got an option to write a new post.  This summer Tom has been playing
games with me when it is time for him to go outside at night.  He has been hiding as he senses
it is time to go out.  He stays in all day but needs time outside, and that is when dark approaches.

Well, we've been playing chase and catch to get him out, and I am tired of it.  So I devised a
method to get him out, and by his somewhat passive attitude, I think he doesn't mind so much.
I life up his forelegs and dance him to the door.  That is because his hind legs are extra strong, and
he tuck them up to kick and scratch me.  I bleed, so keeping his hind legs on the floor, he can't
kick them up.  When we get to the door, he has waited for me to open it.  Then he goes out.  He
has been more cooperative lately, although the dark beings earlier these days in September.  Now
is is October. 

Otherwise, he is a gentleman cat.  I feel better about (don't let out the secret) I can outwit a cat.

Tom's Good Behavior!

Believe it or not, Tom, the noble, handsome, wonderful, cat has been exceptionally good this season.
Santa Claus is going to come down his chimney and leave him presents.  Tom has jumped in my lap during the day to receive petting and affection from me almost any time I sit down.  As usual, he knows when I want to read, so he is there revolving his body around in my lap, his tail in the way of my book.  I still read from paper, hoping to receive recompense from my novels, so that I can buy an electronic reader. 
Tom loves to have his jaws rubbed.  Also his head, as long as I don't touch the front side of his ears.
That makes cats' ears twitch. 
Tom has now been good enough to let me know when he wants to go out about dark.  He sits quietly by the edge of the door that opens.  I do let him in about 10 pm, and he marches right into the utility room where he stays until morning.  He also has access to the rug in the powder room and the closet.
He still leads me out to the garage switch to turn off the front yard light first thing, before I put out his breakfast.
I have also been feeding, watering and cleaning out the litter box of my neighbor this week.  He has done the same for me when I am away from, home.  His cat is a yellow-orange striped pussy who doesn't let me pet her.  But she comes in sight when I enter.  so I talk to her.  I know she listens.  I tempt her with her usual Fancy Feast.  To that she responds.
I'll let you know more about the Christmas cat later on.

Tom's Week

Tom has settled into his winter mode.  Our nights have been cold, and our days warm up by afternoon.  So , often, I have to change from long sleeved sweaters into short sleeved t-shirt
leaving my discarded clothes on my bed, later when I look into the room, I find Tom settled comfortably on my garments.  I don't know if it is a nice feeling or a nice odor that he likes.  His former mistress, my daughter, was here last week-end.  She indulges his every whim and over-feeds him.  And parallel to my clothing, he settles on her luggage for his long naps.

But he has been big on games lately.  Sitting in front on the door as though he wanted to go out at his usual time in the evening -- just when the sun goes down -- as I open the door for him, he swiftly moves away.  Then he swishes his tail around my chair a time or two and goes back to the door. 
"Tom, do you want me to let you out?: I say.  Once I move to the door, again he moves off, maybe into the kitchen and his food dish.  Finally, he may, as he still does, claws on the back of my chair to cause me to yell at him,  "No clawing" or even "Bad cat!"  Finally he will run through the open door to the great outdoors.  Then as a guard, he may hang by the door for most of the time he is out.  when I decide he has had enough of the cold night air, I let him in for the night.  Obediently, he marches directly to the utility room where he can catch up on his leftovers and settle on the rug in the smaller, warmer powder room for the night.

The Purring Cat

Much has kept me from consistency in blogging, but I hope to do better.

Tom bestows his affection greatly -- each time I sit or lie down.  In my lap or if I'm prone he sits close to my face and paws at my hand to get it to pet him.  After a bit of time he appears to be satisfied and settles himself apart from me, usually that is.  Sometimes he curls up next to my back.  And those times after I sit up, I find that his head is resting on the pillow behind where my head lay.
"Imitate your mistress," he seems to be saying.

I wish Tom was a purring cat, but the best he can do is to vibrate slightly.  He does love to share my time. 

You know how cats love to knead, especially on soft surfaces.  I don't believe in cutting cats' claws, so I continue repeating my admonition to stop clawing.  "Don't claw.  No claws." And such.  And believe it or not, Tom does try to press his feet into my lap without clawing.  But next time, I repeat the commands.  His heart is willing, but his flesh is weak.