Saturday, March 31, 2007

Time to Read a Book

I was trying to watch television last night and Diego-san wasn't being very helpful.

In attempt to take a break from Theo's relentless playfulness, Diego hopped up on top of the TV. Unfortunately his long tail hung down right down the middle of the screen. I was too tired to ask him to move so I just kept watching with the screen split and covered.

Friday, March 30, 2007

What I Learned at the Dentist's Office

I was waiting at the dentist's office this morning and picked up a recent copy of People magazine. There was a cover story of Sandra Bullock and it mentioned she has a two-legged dog. I remember reading a while back that she had adopted a three-legged dog so I wondered if I had read something wrong. Turns out she has both- a two legged and a three legged dog. I can't wait to tell Thompson.

The Burden of Responsibility

One of Theo's more annoying misbehaving behaviors is his need to pull towels down off the towel racks. I'll get home some evenings to find all my towels lying on the floor. Diego is part culprit as well but from my observations Theo is the one usually to blame.

Rather than try to think of a punishment for this behavior (punishing him way after the fact probably wouldn't be too effective) I decided instead to assign Theo the duty of making sure the towels are nicely hung when I get home. I don't care if he wants to yank them down when I'm not around, I just don't want to see any evidence of this.

So for the past couple of weeks when I get home, I walk to the upstairs and main level bathrooms with Theo, peer in and praise him if he's done his job. I'm sure he doesn't understand the lavish praise but it's been a while since I've found my towels lying on the floor.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Another First

For the first time ever, Thompson crawled underneath the covers with me last night (albeit with a little encouraging nudging on my part). It wasn't like having Theo or Diego next to me- Thompson was clearly not as relaxed and ready to jump out and run away if necessary. Theo and Diego lie there in a clump oblivious to the world. Still it was nice seeing this feline behavior from Thompson. He can be such a sweet cat.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Another Lesson

Theo is quickly learning that no one enjoys relaxing more than Diego-san.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Springtime Resolution

With the recent pet food scare I've decided it's time for me to do some more research on what I'm feeding the boyz.

I've always known that the stuff I get at Petco (Science Diet) probably isn't very good for them but I've never found the time to do the research and determine what I should be feeding them.

Given their love of all things food related I don't envision any issues with finding a food that is good for them and still satisfies their appetites.

Monday, March 26, 2007


Judging by all the time he spends at open windows I think it's safe to say Thompson misses his days as an outdoor cat. He's doing his darndest to teach Diego and Theo all about the interesting things that go on outside the walls of the house. Yesterday afternoon he spotted a squirrel in the yard and he ran from window to window to keep track of the squirrel's every move. This got Diego's attention- he watched Thompson intently until he too noticed the squirrel and then joined Thompson in the open window.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Healthy and with a Spring in His Step

Theo is clearly feeling like himself again. He spent most of the afternoon chasing Diego-san all over the house and wrestling with Thompson.

All three boyz had extra energy likely because the windows were open and spring is in the air. Thompson was particularly attentive to some squirrels running up and down the trees in the front yard.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Bless You

Theo seems almost back to full health. Of course every time I say to him, "Theo you're not sneezing as much" he'll inevitably sneeze within 10 seconds.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Off in Our Own Worlds

Last night everyone in the household seemed content to be off doing his own thing. Thompson was sitting in his favorite window- the main level bedroom's window that overlooks the backyard. Diego-san was in the basement doing who knows what and Theo was in the living room resting on the couch. He seems to be doing better- less sneezing still some sniffles.

I was upstairs on the computer. Today it's supposed to get back into the 60's so I'll be able to open the windows. This will of course make Thompson very happy and hopefully will help Theo with the needed fresh air in the house.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

2340 Sniffs

I think Theo is getting a little bit better. There was less sneezing last night. He is sniffling quite a bit- and the sound he makes when he sniffles is like the sound of my work printer. It's actually kind of amusing to be lying around and all I hear is this lil sound of sniffles.

He did crawl into bed with me last night right away much to Diego-san's chagrin. Theo climbed underneath the covers (Diego's usual spot) so when Diego finally was ready for bed he jumped up only to discover Theo had taken his usual spot. Diego didn't quite know what to do so he slept on the far edge of the bed. Thompson wasn't so considerate as he hopped up and basically stepped all over Theo. I'm not sure he realized Theo was under the covers. Or maybe he did.

When I woke this morning Diego was in his usual spot however and Theo was nowhere to be seen.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Health Update

So far neither Thompson nor Diego-san have shown any symptoms similar to Theo's. Theo is still sneezing away and I noticed last night is nose is running quite a bit too. Thompson and Diego do tend to avoid Theo when he begins one of his sneezing fits. I'm sure that isn't because either one is worried about their health but rather because they think the youngster is about to explode.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Theo's sneezing fits have continued and I really wish there was something I could do to help him out. I may call the vet this morning.

One of the things I tried was bringing him into the bathroom with me this morning while I took my shower. I thought the steam might help clear his sinus out. Usually when I'm taking my shower he's right outside the door mewing away. Today being on the other side of the door, he wanted nothing more than to be out of the room. He didn't sneeze the entire time however so it might have done some good even if the stress probably did not.

Monday, March 19, 2007


I don't pretend to be objective when it comes to Sandra Bullock movies. She may not exactly be my favorite actress but she most certainly is the actress I feel the most emotional loyalty to even though I know that is geeky at best.

Bullock's latest movie Premonition is her second movie in a row that deals with a warped sense of time. Last year's Lake House which had an even goofier plot than Premonition was better because despite the time differential gimmick, it was at its heart a wistful and mostly effective romantic story. Premonition on the other hand suffers because given the rules the movie's story creates, it doesn't make sense that Sandra's character would behave in the manner she does.

If you know something bad (like your husband dying) is about to happen and you know the events that led up to that moment, and you had memories (premonitions?) about the incident, wouldn't you do your darndest to do everything you could differently to see if that changed the outcome of things? The movie never quite deals with this issue, and it just doesn't make sense that Bullock's character never: a) questions her own sanity; b) tries to convince others that she in no uncertain terms knows that her husband is about to die; c) doesn't even try to talk to her husband much about any of this.

Instead the movie dives just below the surface to have Bullock's character trying to wrestle with the moral dilemma of discovering that her husband is about to have an affair and thus wanting to allow his death to occur before he hurts her and their two daughters.

With the exception of the two Ms. Congeniality movies, I have found something I've liked in every Sandra Bullock movie although none of them even in my warbled mind with the exception of Wrestling Ernest Hemingway is without its flaws. Premonition has plenty of interesting closeups of her face requiring her to convey a steady but bewildered state of mind. She gives about as good a performance as she could have possibly given conveying this questioning faith. But in the end it isn't so much that the story doesn't make sense, it's that the story has more holes in it than the shattered glass window that plays a major role in the plot.

The movie looks good, the acting is effective, but it left me wanting to ask Sandra why she chose the script in the first place. I would guess she would say something about being attracted to its supposed unconventionality. Instead, peel away the artful look of the film and the wannabe deep meanings and what we're left with is something totally unconvincing. Something tells me she's smart enough to know that even if her Premonition character is not.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Uh Oh

Theo began having sneezing fits yesterday and it continued throughout the day today. He'll be fine for awhile and then all of a sudden he'll let go with a bunch (around 10 or so) sneezes. The last time this happened he was diagnosed with feline herpes. As bad as that sounds, apparently it is respiratory condition that is fairly common in cats. The symptoms went away in a week or so.

Unfortunately both Thompson and Diego soon came down with symptoms as well. In Thompson's case one evening he began acting really lethargic, refusing to get out of bed, and eventually lost his voice for a day or so. (That was really sad because the house isn't the same without the sound of Thompson's meow.)

Diego-san's case began shortly after and again it manifested itself with him acting very timid and tired. His symptoms also led to a lot of discharge from his eyes- so much that I ended up bringing him in to the vet and getting some medication.

What was even worse however was the disease kept going from one boy to the next. So once it had made its first round Theo began sneezing again, and then Thompson got sick and then Diego got sick. I began to worry that this would keep up forever and I'd never again have a healthy house of cats.

It did eventually go away. I sure hope that Theo's sneezing doesn't mean a repeat of this process. It isn't fun to see the boyz robbed of their health and energy.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

In Need of Some Action

There are times I think Thompson, Diego-san, and myself bore Theo. These are the times when he's tearing around the house full speed be chased by god knows what imaginary creature. This often happens late at night as I'm getting ready for bed and Thompson and Diego are settling in for a comfortable night's rest. That's when Theo will go tearing up and down the upstairs hallway. He'll prance over to me with a look in his eyes that suggests he doesn't understand why all of us aren't doing what he's doing.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Temper Temper

The boyz and I didn't exactly enjoy the best night last night. I ordered a turntable device that hooks up to my computer and allows me to convert LPs to digital files. This is something I've long had my eye on since I still do have quite a few LPs.

Of course hooking this device up and getting it to work wasn't exactly a matter of just plugging it in. I had to make some adjustments to both the turntable and to my computer to get them talking to each other. Of course all this had the boyz undivided attention. When I shooed Diego away he went in the bathroom and proceeded to knock over a plastic cup that was full of water spilling the water all over the vanity. So of course I scolded him and he ran downstairs.

Later on I was trying to get to sleep when I heard Theo fidgeting around. He knocked over a glass cup that was sitting on my TV stand. Luckily my upstairs is carpeted so it didn't break but I had to get up and scold him too. I wondered if Theo's behavior was tied in to Diego's behavior since the glass cup had been on that stand for weeks and the boyz had paid no attention to it all that time.

I don't like yelling at the boyz, it really isn't my nature but I was feeling a bit frustrated with the turntable project and they weren't exactly being helpful.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

I Am Like Me Also

Thompson watches Diego like a prized pupil. Things Diego has done for months (and in some cases years) Thompson won't try until I'm guessing he feels it is totally safe to do.

Last night was a good example of this. Diego loves to crawl in bed next to me and lie face to face while pawing at my chest and neck. Thompson has never ever done this until last night. Usually Thompson is content lying at the end of the bed or if he needs attention he will wait until I'm lying on my back and then hop up on my chest and sit until I rub his face.

Last night he lay down next to me and with his one front paw put it right at the top of my chest. Although he was purring I could tell he was a little antsy about this "new" behavior and gave up his spot when Diego arrived to take his usual spot.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I Am Me

One of the benefits of living in a multi cat house is that I get a daily reminder that each cat has his own personality. Sure they all do things that felines are known for- letting their curiosity get the best of them being one prime example- but each has his own quirks.

One of the things that makes Diego-san different than any cat I've ever met is when he needs attention, he expresses this need by climbing up your body and getting right in your face. He isn't shy about choosing the person either- he does this with people he's only just met. While I've seen other cats express the need for attention- Diego is the only one that I've seen who takes such drastic steps (literally) to fill this need. This combined with his otherwise stubborn independence (certainly present in every cat I've seen with the possible exception of Theo) makes Diego a wonderful housemate.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Spring Ahead

It was in the mid-50's yesterday afternoon so I opened a window for the boyz.

Thompson of course spent all evening taking in the fresh air and fresh smells. Diego-san spent some time looking out as well. Theo, perhaps from his out of the normal morning, was not interested in the least in the open window.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Theo's Big Day

For the second day in a row- Theo had quite the excitement to endure. Today was his annual trip to the vet for a checkup and shots. He's easy to transport- he rarely is difficult to locate in the house and he doesn't struggle when I place him in his carrier.

I found it curious that neither Diego-san or Thompson batted an eye as I loaded Theo up and brought him to my car.

Theo did however let out his displeasure over the five minute car trip to the vet's. He bellowed louder than I ever heard him bellow. And he constantly meowed while I signed in at the front desk. By the time the vet saw him however, she had a difficult time listening to his heart and lungs because he was purring so loudly. He checked out fine. He's lost half a pound since last year (some of it no doubt from all the heart pounding excitement over the last few days).

Sunday, March 11, 2007

That's Where They Went

It was an exciting day for the boyz. My friend M- replaced her parents' appliances and since their refrigerator was much newer than mine, she agreed to give me the replaced refrigerator. She also gave me a couch she no longer wanted.

So M- and her friend Ivan delivered the refrigerator and couch to my house. I locked the boyz upstairs and peeked in on them occasionally as Ivan wheeled my old refrigerator out and the 'new' one in. Diego of course was dying to get out and see what all the commotion was about. Thompson and Theo were more frightened then curious.

Diego came out to explore the minute the door was opened. Thompson and Theo cautiously checked out the changes a few minutes later. In the end, Theo was the beneficiary of all the changes. Underneath the old refrigerator there were a dozen or so of the crinkly balls that he loves to swat all over the house. So his supply has been replenished.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Spring is Coming

T'was a sunny day.

Got up to the upper 40's temperature wise. A lazy Saturday lounging with the boyz. They sure do know all the ins and outs of the best way to enjoy a sunny afternoon relaxing.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Who's the Boss?

I've given in to trying to teach Theo what a toothbrush is for (my dad suggested when Theo plays with the toothbrush I should take the opportunity to try to brush his teeth) and instead take Shelley's advice and just leave a toothbrush in the box of cat toys.

I did this yesterday and Theo followed me (with my toothbrush in hand) all the way from the bathroom to the living room where the toy box is located. As soon as I put the toothbrush in the box he took it out and sniffed at it. And just to think all this time I've spent all that money on legitimate cat toys...

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

What the %$#@ is This About?

Theo has in the last month or so developed the annoying habit of going into the bathroom and knocking my toothbrush and the toothpaste container into the sink or on to the floor.

This started when I was away dog-sitting- I came back home to find my toothbrush lying on the living room carpet. For sanitary reasons this was a bit disconcerting- not only because the toothbrush was on the ground but because to get there it seemed likely that one of the boyz had the bristles in his mouth at some point. I of course had no idea which boy was responsible or the events that led to the new home for my toothbrush.

Ever since I've been back home however the culprit became very clear. If I leave my toothbrush on the ledge above the sink (its traditional spot), Theo will climb up and knock it either into the sink or on to the ground. I have taken to putting the toothbrush into my medicine cabinet - but sometimes I forget and I'll end up hearing Theo's high pitched meow a sure sign he's up to no good. That no good is usually about this new habit. I'm not sure how to break him of this habit- I tried scolding him, reasoning with him, and assuring him that the toothbrush was OK on its ledge- that it really didn't need to be on the floor.

I eventually ended up closing the bathroom door. Nothing seems to reassure Theo and so I'm trying my best to remember to put my toothbrush and toothpaste out of sight.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Being Playful Too

Thompson isn't exactly the most playful cat when it comes to the box of cat toys that is available to him. He isn't capable (without quite a bit of effort) of batting a ball around.

Actually his favorite toy is his own tail. It's quite entertaining to watch him lie on his side and swirl around in an attempt to catch his tail.

He has recently however, found a toy that he loves to play with- a mouse that squeaks when it moves. The mouse has a tail that Thompson can hold in his mouth and he then shakes his head and balances himself on his back legs freeing his front paw up to try and swat the mouse. It's great fun to see him do this.

Monday, March 05, 2007

The Team

Thompson and Diego-san spent a lot of time lying around together over the weekend. I always enjoy seeing how well they get along- they've found a relationship that works- a kind of teamwork to figure out all the things going on in the world. In fact when I went to take inventory a couple of times to check up to see where each boy was because the house seemed awfully still- inevitably I'd find Theo off exploring and playing somewhere and Thompson and Diego relaxing together.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Learning Scary Lessons

An update on Theo's strange eating behavior: I now have a theory about his reluctance to eat out of his own dish. It's totally a guess but yesterday when he was eating his meal he got distracted when Thompson went into the living room and meowed at something. Theo began semi choking on a piece of food and began hacking to clear his throat.

He was right over his bowl and I thought he was going to throw up in his bowl. Once the hacking stopped he didn't have too much interest in trying to continue eating. Eventually he went over to Thompson's empty bowl as if that was the place to find safer food. Hmmmm.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

A Welcomed Return

Went over to M-'s for dinner and a movie. Both Torii and Kurbie greeted me enthusiastically. They even took turns lying on my lap during the movie. I guess I did well enough taking care of them that they actually missed me a little.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Feeling Minnesotan

We got another foot of snow after getting around a foot last weekend. Driving home was rather slow and treacherous and then came the fun job of shoveling the driveway and sidewalk. And it is still snowing out.

Up until now our winter has been very mild- the lack of snow was bemoaned by all the skiers and snowmobilers and snowman makers. I myself just can't wait until it's scooter weather again. And I'm sure the boyz are anxious for open window fresh air days.