six, administrative assistant

Everyone thinks their cats are weird, and everyone posts pix of their cats online, and everyone gets bored of looking at pix of cats, but I feel the need to document this.

Six is the weirdest cat we have ever had, and this is the latest weirdness. She has apparently decided that if Robin is working from home, she needs an assistant. And so, on those days when Robin is in her home office, Six climbs on the desk and lays there pretty much until the end of the workday. It’s especially odd since Six seems to have ADHD … she is very easily distracted … but in her new role as administrative assistant, she remains vigilant.

administrative assistant

meeting an old friend for the first time

Recently I passed my 6th anniversary of being on meds for anxiety and depression. I don’t talk about them much, because they seem to work, but they don’t have such a huge effect that I’m all that much different on the outside. Those meds are just meds, alongside all the others I take for other, physical, problems.

Back on March 26, 2005, I posted an entry titled “zombie” where I asked if anyone had information on SSRIs … I was about to make a decision on whether to go to the doctor for meds, and wondered, “If you take meds to get rid of lesser personal characteristics, how do you keep from losing the better parts of your person as well?”

A couple of days later my friend Jonathan posted a reply. In it, he wrote about a cat he had that pissed on things, plus Jonathan and Carrie were trying to sell their house, and you don’t want a house to smell like cat pee when it’s on the market, so they took their vet’s advice and put the cat on Paxil. It worked … as Jonathan said, “His meow changed slightly, and otherwise it's like he's the same cat minus the pissing.” At one point, they decided to take the cat off the Paxil, and the cat started peeing again. So “now he's on it for life. Yes I know that's fucked up. But the house sold in one day.”

I loved this story. I saw myself as the cat, peeing on everything, pissing people off, you might say.

My brother posted another reply about Prozac that was very helpful. He said that Prozac “didn't mean I just was able to ignore my ‘social duties’, just that they didn't control me anymore.” (Rereading that, I have to say, that is a perfect description of how it turned out for me.)

Finally, a good friend pointed out in an email that “Being miserable and crazy/funny/fill in the blank is overrated.”

I took their advice; six years later, I’m still on the meds, and, as I say, my brother described it perfectly. It’s working for me. I’m not advertising their use for others, just talking about myself.

Well, last night, we were at Jonathan and Carrie’s house, and who do you think I met? Yep … the peeing cat! He’s still alive … I saw him with my own eyes. I felt like I owed him my life. I don’t think he even knew I was there.

Which is probably how it should be.


Just got an app for my Android called PicSay, which leads me to one of those awful blog posts where I include cute pix from the cute app. It sells itself as a goofy picture modifier, although there are many PhotoShop type features, as well. Here are three examples of what it can do. First, I take a photo of Robin with a look on her face I’ve seen many times, and add a word balloon:

robin balloon

Next, I try to make Six look sillier than usual. I don’t really succeed, but here’s the picture, anyway:

six eyes

Finally, here is my answer to everyone who complains about how I look in family photos:

masoo smiling

bengal life

Robin wants the world to know how odd our cat Six is. This video is only eight seconds long, so to imagine what it’s like around here, picture Robin replacing the little duckies so Six can repeat what you see here. This will go on as long as Robin feels like playing:

what comes after the terrible twos?

Happy third birthday to the Bengal Sisters, Six and Boomer. I know I should put scare quotes around “Bengal,” but at this point, who really cares? If it quacks like duck etc. Boomer is the prettiest cat we have nowadays … I’m partial to Starbuck, but sometimes she looks like a rat, whereas Boomer always looks the same. I’m not sure there’s much else to Boomer than her looks … she’s not dumb or anything, but outside of liking to sleep with Robin, there’s nothing she does that marks her off from other cats. I might notice her more if she was the only Bengal in the house, since then her love of water and dislike of being held would be more noticeable. But she’s not in the same league in those areas as her sister, so Boomer will just have to accept being the pretty one.

Which leaves us with Six. Robin has a new theory … Six has always had a sensitive stomach, the food we feed the cats is based on a vet’s suggestions for Six, she barfs more than most cats (not hairballs, but actual hurling). I don’t want to overstate this … she doesn’t spend all her days meowing in pain. But she exhibits every characteristic of a person with ADHD, and while in the past we’ve just assumed Six has odd chemistry, Robin now wonders if maybe it’s just that she always has a tummy ache, that she think that’s normal the way Starbuck thinks having three paws is normal, and she copes. Robin thinks this might explain Six’s antsy behavior.

Examples? Six doesn’t sleep all that much … and we’re talking cats here, sometimes I think cats sleep 23 hours a day. She is capable of lying still for awhile, but she is easily distracted … “easily” doesn’t really get it, if she’s in the same room with you and you walk out, she will follow you. She is, in fact, very predictable. I mean, on the one hand, you never know what bizarre thing she’ll do next, but you know that she’ll do something. If you turn on the water in the kitchen or bathroom, she will come running from wherever she is to check out the action. If you turn on the shower, she’ll want to join you. She even has some kind of memory for these things … she knows that I fill the humidifier with water before Robin goes to bed, and she knows she likes to lap up any spillage, so once it gets dark, every time I walk into the bedroom, she follows me, jumps on the bed, stares longingly at the humidifier, and meows. If it’s in the morning and I go to do anything in the bathroom … brush my teeth, take a leak, anything … she will take her place in front of the shower, waiting for me to turn on the water. (I understand that dogs do this stuff all the time … it’s only odd because we’re talking about a cat here, and cats mostly ignore you.)

And, of course, there’s the part where she has two old socks that are “hers,” and when she gets bored of all the other trouble she could be making, she puts one of the socks in her mouth, starts making these guttural sounds, and takes the sock to the nearest human, laying it at their feet. If you spend your day moving between floors, she’ll spend her day moving her socks up and down the stairs and offering them to you as gifts.

Whatever … all anyone really wants to see is pictures, so here’s one I took this morning of the two sisters as they tried to fit into the bathroom sink. That’s Six on the left … Boomer’s the darker, more Bengal-looking one on the right. Note that the faucet is not even turned on … they’re just waiting and hoping, maybe even working as a team (Six trying to turn it on with her nose, Boomer waiting for the water):

sisters on their birthday 2009