Uno Happily Irrepressible!

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Special Kitties & All Who Love Them, UNITE HERE!

March 6th 2013 6:12 am
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Hooray, I finally conned Mom into letting me start a new Catster group for all Special Kitties (Kitties With Disabilities), friends & family members of Special Kitties, & everyone who loves Special Kitties or wants to learn more about Special Kitties.

The URL for our new group is:
http://www.catster.com/group/Special_kitties_kitties_wi th_disabilities-19258

It is my hope that this group will positively thrive and grow and provide a valuable resource for all of us who have Special Kitties, know Special Kitties, & love Special Kitties. I also hope this group will help positively educate & show others that Special Kitties can & do learn to live full happy lives. It is also my hope that this group will help to positively encourage people to adopt, rescue, or otherwise give a Special Kitty the greatest blessing of all, a chance to live a happy full life in a good loving forever home.

So far, I haven't yet managed to convince Mom to buy me my own laptop to manage our Catster group yet though. I'm still stuck having to use her laptop (it's easier for a kitty to use than the desktops are!)

 

Wow, DDP Today & New Family Members Wanna Make Friends Too

March 4th 2013 2:09 am
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Wow a DDP today, Thank you Catster! Now maybe Mom will get over being upset at me for stealing her package of beef jerky this evening, sneaking it under the bed, opening it, and sharing it with Little Skittles, Lefty, Righty, Buttons, Velcro, and Bratsky. By the time Mom noticed it was gone from the countertop, we had already eaten half of it. Hey Mom that's what you get for leaving the beef jerky package unguarded.

Mom put Bratsky and Lacey on Catster today too, and they want to be friends with everyone too. Bratsky and Lacey aren't totally new to Catster. Lacey appears in photos with Splats on her profile. Bratsky appears with Buddha on his profile. Velcro and Buttons have appeared in others photos too and we're trying to talk Mom into putting Velcro and Buttons on Catster too, as well as trying to talk her into putting up some of the old-timers that have already gone to the bridge, sort of to honor their lives. We are all happy Mom finally joined Catster Plus so she could give gifts to our friends.

Thanks again for my DDP. PURRRSSSSS!

 

Initiation

March 1st 2013 4:14 pm
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Since Little Skittles got on Catster today, I decided to give her a little "initiation."

Today I went fishing for trackball cords again. I know my human mom doesn't like me to do it, but its such an effective way to get her attention when she's on a computer, especially if I pull the cord out of the USB port!

Little Skittles was hiding under the bed with me when I executed my strike on the trackball cord with my usual lightning speed and precision. The cord came out of the USB port. I disappeared as fast as I had struck the cord but Little Skittles just sat there confused because she didn't know what was going on. Little Skittles took the rap for yanking the trackball cord out of the USB port while I made sure to be found sweetly innocently laying on a shelf at the opposite end of the house.

Welcome to Catster, Little Skittles. Hey friends, Little Skittles wants to be everyone's friend too!

 

Fishing, Catch of the Day, & a Mystery

February 24th 2013 9:54 pm
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Anyone who has ever gone fishing will be familiar with the way a fish gives small jerks on your line when it's nibbling at the bait. You also will be familiar with the experience of pulling the line back up out of the water to find....nothing, no fish at all on it, as well as the triumphant experience when you haul in your "Catch of the Day" firmly attached to your fishing line!

Last night I was sitting on my bed doing various things on my laptop when I felt a small jerk on my trackball cord, just like it feels when a fish jerks at a fishing line. I looked down and saw...nothing. I went back to what I was doing.

Jerk....jerk!

I look down. It HAS to be some mischievous feline family member who is playing this little prank on me. Yet there's not a cat anywhere even close to my trackball cord that I can see. There's a big heavy storage box of books right under the area of the bed where I was sitting, so there's no room for a cat to hide in that particular area.

Again I went back to doing things on my laptop.

Jerk....jerk!

I look down again. Nothing. I pretend to go back to doing things on my laptop while keeping a sneaky (so I thought) watchful eye on my trackball cord. Nothing. After a few minutes I started getting bored and I figured that whoever it was, wherever it was hiding, the culprit probably knew from my breathing pattern or something, that I was waiting and watching the cord. I went back to doing things on my laptop again for real.

Jerk...jerk...jerk!

Again, when I look down, there was nothing, no sign of a cat anywhere close to the cord. I pulled the cord up so there was less of it dangling, then I went back to typing on my laptop.

Jerk...jerk...jerk! Jerk! Jerk! JERK! MRROOOWWWW!!!!! Hissss!!! Hissss!!!!! MRRROOOWWWWWW!

Aha! That time the "Catch of the Day" or more appropriately, the CULPRIT, was CAUGHT!

Firmly stuck in my trackball cord was a single claw.

That claw was even more firmly attached to a little black paw.

That little black paw was most firmly attached to one UNO, who was under the bed meowing and hissing in panic as she was jerking frantically at the cord in an attempt to free her stuck claw. All of a sudden, her fun was over as Uno became my "Catch of the Day" and her little game turned into a moment of panic. It was the first claw on Uno's right forepaw that was stuck, the claw that would compare to a human's right index finger (anybody notice that just as humans are right or left-handed, cats too seem to prefer using their right or left paw and most cats seem to be right-pawed just as most humans are right-handed?) I reached down, grabbed Uno, got her claw unstuck & then clipped her claws...again....seems like I just clipped her claws a couple of days ago...her claws grow fast. After I clipped her claws, Uno fled from the room like a bolt of black lightning.

I looked under the bed to see how Uno had managed to hide within reach of my trackball cord. As it turns out, the previously mentioned storage box had somehow managed to develop the ability to move on its own. It now was located under the opposite side of the bed from where I was sitting. The area under where I was sitting was now empty, a perfect hiding place for Uno's sneak attacks on my trackball cord.

The mystery of "whodunit" was solved but another mystery remained. Uno's the smallest cat in the house. (Incidentally or perhaps BECAUSE she's the smallest of all the cats in the house she is also the one who has the biggest loudest mouth and the widest range of vocalizations.) She's a small fine-boned cat with the typical lean streamlined Siamese/oriental shorthair body type. Although she's not skinny or underweight, she weighs barely 4 pounds.

I wouldn't have expected any cat to be able to move that box of books. So how did Uno DO it?

 

Uno's Valentines Viewpoint & Advice to All Her Kitty Friends

February 15th 2013 1:31 pm
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Uno says a big thank you to all her friends who gave her Valentines. She also says that she really appreciates all the love, caring, friendship, and other good things you, her kitty friends, show her with your virtual Catster treats, stars, rosettes, Valentines, special gifts, etc, and thanks everyone for all these things.

She also has a bit of "kittyadvice" to her friends about virtual gifts!

Now as I agreed to do yesterday after Uno got all her Valentines, I'm going to turn this over to Uno and let her speak for herself in the following conversation so her kitty friends can read her own words & get & follow her kitty advice "straight from the kitty's mouth."

Note: I'm only responsible for what I say in this conversation. Uno being a typical cat when it comes to appearing to be innocent, is likely to only be willing to take responsibility for what she says that doesn't get her into any trouble!

Me: "Hey Uno, look at all the valentines your friends gave you! Isn't that cool?"

Uno: "I'm so happy my friends like me so much. But Mom, what good are Valentines and other virtual gifts if you can't EAT them? Can't Catster make it so that Valentines and other gifts are made of real CHEESE so I can EAT them?"

Me: "Now Uno, don't get greedy. You should be polite and thankful your friends love you and care so much about you that they honor you and show you their friendship and caring by giving you all those virtual treats, rosettes, stars, valentines, and that nice milk special gift you got for your post on Thundercats group forum about cat fights."

Uno: "Yeah, when I got my virtual milk special gift, I asked you to give me a taste of real milk instead of cheese. And you wouldn't even give me any real milk at all when I got my virtual milk special gift! Not even a taste!"

Me: "Uno you know why I won't give you real milk! Like most cats, your digestive system doesn't handle cows milk well and you get diarrhea and really malodorous catfarts if you drink milk! If you remember, I shared my strawberry yogurt with you that day when you wanted some of it.!

Uno: "I get your point Mom, but look at this from my superior feline viewpoint. You're not a cat, after all. You get enjoyment from looking at things that don't move. You get enjoyment out of reading stories. But those things are BORING to kitties like me. I like things that move, things I can play with, things I can chew on, things I can chase, things I can EAT...especially if they're made of CHEESE. The most fun I can have with your virtual world on the computer screen is when I chase your cursor and then you always make me stop chasing it."

Uno: "Oh, and there was the time I opened TED notepad and had fun typing "xcqaaz1QQQQQQQQQ6:57 PM Thursday, July 14, 20116:57 PM Thursday, July 14, 2011" in it when I was a kitten. Remember how hard you tried to figure out who did that and how before you gave up & chalked it up as a perpetual mystery that probably would never be solved?"

Me: "You mean it was YOU who did that? Do you mind telling me how?"

Uno: "I was trying to hit keys on the keyboard the way I see you do it and somehow, it just happened. I touched a little orange and white icon that opened your TED notepad" (TED notepad is a fantastic freeware notepad replacement that has so many features, it's far superior to Windows notepad. You can find TED notepad at it's homepage here: http://jsimlo.sk/notepad/ )

Uno: "Then I just started hitting some keys on the keyboard until Splats & Buttons & Velcro told me they hear you coming back to the room & I better get down before you see me."

Uno: "So I got down without knocking anything over that time, I didn't want to chance anything falling by the bed coz that would have given away that it was me and I was hiding under there. I hid under the bed and you never saw me and nobody else was that close to the desk. Then while you were staring at the stuff I typed in the notepad and trying to figure out who did it and how it was done, I sneaked out of the room through the doorway behind you!"

Me: "I always wondered who did that. I knew it was ONE of you cats. Even more I wondered HOW one of you cats did that, especially how on earth you managed to put the DATE on it."

Uno: "Well, keep wondering because I've gotta keep SOMETHING secret from you. Now Mom close your eyes until I tell you that you can look again. What I have to say next is something you don't need to see."

Me: "Uno, even if I don't peek now, I'll see it after you post it! And remember, I can edit your diary if I have to."

Uno: "Well it will already be too late for you to even think of editing what I say before you even get a chance to read it. Remember you said you have things you need to get done tonight before you have time to settle down and catch up to things on Catster tonight! By the time you see what I said, my friends will already have read this and seen my kittyadvice to them. And I bet some of my friends will agree with me and follow my kittyadvice too!"

Uno: "Hey kitty friends, one piece of kittyadvice to you all---ALWAYS KEEP SECRET FROM YOUR HUMAN how you do some of your most hard-for-humans-to-figure-out tricks. If you don't let your humans find out how you do your most mystifying tricks, you will be assured of continuing to get and keep your human's attention. "

Uno: "Another piece of kittyadvice to all my friends! You don't want to get TOO well-behaved because Too Well-Behaved=Boring and Boring=Not Getting As Much Attention As You Want!! Lefty's too much of a "Goody Four Paws and look at Lefty's diary! Mom even ADMITTED in Lefty's diary that this is true."

At this moment, my alarm clock went off. (Another trick someone in my feline family likes to occasionally pull is to somehow set my alarm clock for some bizarre time and turn on the alarm.)

Me: "Uno did you have anything to do with the alarm clock going off just now?"

Uno: "Who, me? Do you think I'd do anything like that? Never mind, I know the answer to that already, but honestly Mom, this time it wasn't me and I don't know who did it."

Me: "Back to topic Uno. And you can't make this too long either. You don't want to bore or confuse your readers, do you? If you want to write a book, I'll help you but your Catster diary is not the place to write a book because humans usually don't like to read really long text pages online."

Uno: "Oh all right, I'll concede that you do have a point there."

Uno: "Ok since Mom says I have to wrap this up soon and not make it too long, I need to tell all you kitty friends of mine one more piece of GREAT kitty advice.!"

Uno: "Yesterday I told Mom that although I honestly do appreciate all the rosettes, stars, the special milk gift, and all the valentines everyone has given me and all your thoughtfulness, love, friendship, and caring they stand for, I also told Mom that since I can't actually DO anything with these virtual gifts, she needs to do something to make these gifts more meaningful to ME in a way a KITTY can FULLY UNDERSTAND and APPRECIATE them."

Uno: "Mom asked me what did I suggest she do. Even though I tell Mom that I always eat my cat food good, she still usually limits my treats because she says too much junk food and treats might not be good for me. I decided this was a good time to make her relax the rules a little, at least for a day."

Uno: "I answered her, "Duh! Mom you know my very most favorite treat in the whole world. Just give me some cheese, at least one good big piece for every star, rosette, treat, virtual milk, valentine and any other virtual gift I get."

Uno: "Guess what? Mom actually listened to me and gave me a bunch of cheese treats yesterday, one for each of my valentines. That's more cheese than I usually manage to con out of her in a WEEK. "

Uno: "Now before Mom starts griping at me that this is getting too long and nagging me again to wrap this up, here's one more piece of kitty advice for my kitty friends for now."

Uno: "All you kitty friends of mine, tell your human its really TRUE that by giving you a treat or if you prefer, a new toy everytime you get a new virtual treat, star, rosette, or special gift, your human will be putting the meaning of these gifts into a language all we cats understand and make it possible for us to really appreciate the love, caring, friendship, and all the other good things these virtual gifts represent."

Uno: "So kitty friends of mine, all of you tell your human to give you at least ONE real treat or, at least ONE new toy for every virtual treat, star, rosette, or special gift you get from your kitty friends on Catster. My mom listened to me, hopefully your humans will listen to you too. After all, nobody is superior to a cat when it comes to giving advice to other cats! "

Uno: "Thanks again everyone, I really love and appreciate all of you. My fellow feline friends, you make me feel very special and you inspire me to keep doing my best to keep things stirred up here so I won't ever get boring and also so Mom has plenty of new things to write about in my diary (thank you Catster for my DDPs!) and help me in my mission to show the world that all us cats, even those of us who are disabled or different in some way-or as I prefer to say "uniquely extraordinary", deserve to have and keep good indoor forever homes with owners who love us."

 

Now You've Gone & Done It!

February 10th 2013 5:03 am
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Sometimes cats, like children, will for no discernible reason, will take a notion to be exceedingly bratty. At times like these even the normally best behaved individual can behave like a feline version of Tazz the Tasmanian devil cartoon character. When the individual already bears some resemblance to Tazz in behavior to start with, that individual becomes REALLY bratty when the brattiness mood strikes. The brattiness escalates until sooner or later, the "Now You've Gone & Done It" threshold is finally reached.

Recently Uno has had a bad case of the bratty Tazz behavior bug. She still is knocking the cordless phone off its base constantly. While I'm trying to use my laptop, she yanks the trackball cord out of the USB port. She yanks the cords of the desktop trackballs and sends the trackballs crashing down onto the floor. She yanked a keyboard cord and pulled a keyboard off the desk onto the floor. When I was trying to eat a bagel with cream cheese, Uno tried to grab a bite. I held the bagel up out of her reach only to have one of her partners in crime, a little tortie named Skittles, reach out from where she was sitting on top of the headboard and swipe a paw through the cream cheese. I quickly moved the bagel out of Skittles reach & while Skittles licked the cream cheese off her paw, Righty made her move to try to get a bit of my bagel. While Righty and Skittles were keeping me busy, Uno sneaked up from the opposite side and was busy licking cream cheese of the second half of my bagel that was sitting on my plate as fast as she could.

The Now You've Gone & Done It point was almost reached. I picked up my canned air. Suddenly there were no cats in my immediate vicinity and I was able to eat my bagel in peace.
Then I saw the little red light that indicates my cell phone is charging, suddenly go out. I looked down. Uno was standing there looking at me innocently. The cord to my cellphone charger had been neatly severed in two. Although I wonder if there was some sort of defect in the cord that allowed it to be broken in two so quickly and easily, there was no doubt as to who obligingly provided the sharp little teeth to help that cord break. Today I'll have to go buy another cellphone charger.


The Now You've Gone & Done It point has been reached.

After I buy a replacement cellphone charger, I'm going to fish the bottle of Bitter Apple out of my animal supplies cabinet and the trackball cords and the cellphone charger cord will get a nice coating of bitter apple. The cordless phone on its base is going to be covered with a plastic box and a rock too heavy for a cat to move will be put on top of the box. Certain feline family members are going to find me armed with a can of canned air nearby when I eat. After I do these things for a few days, most likely Uno (and her partners in food theft crimes) will have given up on these particular antics and gotten over their bratty Tazz behavior bugs.

When their pets misbehave, too many people react by getting rid of the pet. I believe your feline/canine/other animal family members should be for keeps & that when one of your non-human family members reaches the "Now You've Gone & Done It' point, that you should take positive measures to work through problem situations with our non-human family members and deal with the problem behavior(s), in this case coating cords with Bitter Apple (and if that doesn't work I'll try Bitter Orange or Tabasco sauce), temporarily covering the cordless phone on its base with a protective box for a few days so it's no longer fun to play with, and making sure I have a can of canned air within reach and within sight of would-be food thieves when I eat. A number of times when I've had a feline family member urinate and/or defecate in inappropriate places and there were no clear reasons for it, I've caged that cat and after that cat has consistently used its litter pan for a month while caged, I've let that cat out again and the cat has continued to be clean again in the house.

I have a 15 year old cat who I have to keep confined to an extra large dog crate. Her kidneys and digestive system function poorly, she urinates and defecates excessively, is unable to be clean in the house although she's clean in a crate because her litterpan is nearby, and has to have a special canned diet. She is happy and cheerful, plays with her toys and clearly is still enjoying life. If I leave her crate door open, she might come out for a moment, then she'll go right back in. She is also very well aware that when she's eating, the other cats cannot get at her food. Before she got to the point where she wasn't able to make it to the litter pan in time in the house, I used to crate her to feed her so the other cats wouldn't get her food and she would run to the crate, get in it, and meow when she wanted fed.

Now You've Gone & Done It!

And you're lucky I love you enough to use positive strategies to handle and work together with you through behavior problems and situations until we, you my non-human family member(s) and I, reach solutions that are positive for us together.. But my home really is a forever home for my non-human family members , my non-human family members really are for KEEPs and together I will see my non-human family members through good times and bad.

But that's what a good responsible owner/pet parent SHOULD do.

 

Thanks again for DDP & Uno keeps making sure to give me more- to write about!

February 6th 2013 6:24 pm
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Again my feline family & I humbly thank you for your appreciation of Uno's & Buddha's diaries and honoring both of them with DDPs again on the same day!

I think Uno must be taking note of her DDPs when she's sitting here with me. She seems to be working on making sure to keep giving me things to write about!

Uno is still doing her newest "trick" of knocking my cordless phone off its base up to a dozen times a day. She also has picked up a new attention-getting trick from Righty.

On the headboard of my bed sits a reading lamp that turns off and on just by touching a button on the lamp's base. There is also a space by the lamp that usually is occupied by a member of my cat family. Righty is one that spends quite a bit of time up there by the lamp and she discovered how to push the button that turns the lamp on and off. She's figured out that turning the lamp on and off when I'm in the bedroom is an excellent way to get attention.

Now Righty's personality is fairly laid-back and easygoing and she's often busy playing and doesn't demand a lot of human attention. Therefore, she uses the trick of turning the light off and on to get attention in moderation. Uno, however, is a different story.

Today Uno has been very demanding of attention, knocking the phone off its base, yanking my trackball cord out of the USB port, trying to step on my laptop keyboard as I was typing, knocking books off the headboard of my bed, getting on top of the screen lid of my bearded dragon's terrarium (a place she knows is off-limits to cats) and not even getting down when I came into the room and told her to get down. I had to pick up the squirt bottle to convince her to get down.

When I went to eat a Subway meatball and cheese sandwich for lunch,
Uno was more persistently pesky than usual about begging and demanding me to share. She tried to help herself to my sandwich and as a result, she didn't get any of it. Shortly after that I was in the bedroom, Uno was nearby, and Righty was up on the headboard. Righty proceeded to turn the light off and on a couple of times. Now Uno in the past has seen Righty do this but has acted disinterested. Today, Uno was all attention when Righty did it.

Later on, when the spot on the headboard by the light was devoid of any other cats, Uno jumped up there and proceeded to turn the light off and on to the point where the effect was annoyingly similar to that of a strobe light and I finally unplugged the light to put a stop to it.

I guess Uno successfully accomplished her mission of giving me more to write about in her diary!

 

Uno's Newest Trick=Attention-Getting or Getting Even?

February 3rd 2013 1:01 pm
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This morning after getting accidentally on purpose knocked off the bed onto the floor by Splat Cat (that story is told in detail in Splat Cat's diary), Uno was not in a particularly good mood. She voiced her displeasure in an obviously angry meow at Splat Cat who continued ignoring uno and walked out of the room without even looking back. Uno looked up at me and meowed and I said "Sorry girl you asked for that one."

Now although I know my cats clearly understand some things I say to them, I have no idea how much they understand of other things I say to them such as the remark I made here. Uno's actions following my remark sure makes me wonder if she understood it though.

After I made that remark to Uno, she went over and sat beside my cordless house phone which was sitting in its base. Then she reached out a paw and very deliberately knocked the phone out of the base and onto the floor. After this she jumped up onto the computer desk, knocked my TV/Cable remote control onto the floor and shoved it under the bed. When I said "knock it off Uno" and made a move to replace the phone in its base and fish the remote back out from under the bed, Uno turned and flew out of the room.

At least half a dozen more times today, Uno has knocked the cordless phone off its base, knocked the remote off the computer desk, and shoved the remote under the bed. Regardless of her motive for doing it, Uno's certainly getting my attention with this newest "trick" of hers!

 

Again I humbly thank all ....shhhh don't tell Uno!!!

February 1st 2013 7:31 am
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Again I humbly thank everyone for your appreciation of Uno (and Hallie) and their diaries. Don't tell Uno her diary made diary of the day for a second time though. She'll think she has to come up with something new and creative to do to give me some material for another story so she can try to get diary of the day again.

Curiously today Uno hasn't shown any interest in trackball heists at all. Oval track racing through the master bedroom, the living room, the kitchen and two of the hallways seems to be the game of the day for Uno and her crew today! Its surprising how a little cat can move swiftly and never make a sound, yet when she chooses to, that same little cat can race through the house making as much noise as if it were horses racing through the house!

 

Mystery of the Traveling Trackballs

January 31st 2013 11:49 pm
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For a few days now, I keep finding my computer trackballs have somehow been diving off my computer desk and the balls themselves somehow have been coming out of the trackballs and traveling impossible distances to impossible places. The trackball balls achieved all their impossible journeys without having ever once been caught in the process of traveling!

I don't know why trackballs haven't totally replaced computer mice. I love trackballs, they're so much better than mice because instead of having to move the entire unit around, the unit is stationary and you only move the little ball around. With a trackball, you don't ever end up running the unit off of a mouse pad or off the edge of a desk. Best of all with a trackball you can even kick back on your bed, prop yourself up with some pillows, put your laptop on your lap, plug the trackball into the USB port, set the trackball on your lap or beside you, and relax as you work on your laptop or play a game. The only problem I have when doing this is that sometimes my view of the screen becomes partially obscured by a small black warm furry opaque object that tends to enjoy laying on my lap between me and my laptop.

Computer trackball balls are heavy and solid and they can't travel very fast or very far on carpet. A ball that falls out of a trackball and lands on carpet usually will only travel a foot or two at most from the spot where it landed. Even if a trackball ball could make it all the way to one of the doorways to the room, the doorsill would stop the rolling ball instantly.

Both of my desktop trackballs are of the design where the ball is recessed on the side of the trackball. With this design, there's a small hole in the trackball bottom cover under the ball where you can push the ball upward and out with an object such as an ink pen.
If a trackball of this design falls right side up and lands right side up, the ball will not fall out of it and even if it lands upside down, the ball doesn't always fall out of it. It's not that easy to pry the ball out of this style of trackball. I hadn't caught any cats trying to mess with the trackballs. There's no way a cat could pry the ball out of this style of trackball. A cat cannot pick up a trackball ball in its mouth because of it's size, smoothness, and heavy weight.

Mysteriously, my trackballs have been taking dives off the computer desk, and the balls have been jumping out of the trackballs and traveling impossible distances to such strange hard to reach places as the exact center of the area under the bed, where it can't be reached from either side thus making it necessary to go find a broom and use the broomstick to knock the ball out from under the bed. Another trackball ball turned up in such impossible places as under a chair in the next room, meaning it had to travel an impossible distance on carpet, levitate itself over a doorsill, then travel at an angle across carpet for several feet to reach the chair and go under it. The most impossible trackball ball journey so far has been when somehow a trackball ball traveled across carpet, levitated over the doorsill, traveled several feet further across the living room carpet, made a 90 degree lefthand turn, traveled 10 or more feet across the living room carpet in this new direction, and came to rest under Charlie the Blue Front Amazon parrot's cage. Is this the work of playful ghosts or what?

Last night I was doing some work on my laptop, I got sleepy, and nodded off. I don't know how long I dozed before suddenly.... CRASH!!! I opened my eyes to see that a trackball had just taken a dive off my computer desk. Quickly I half closed my eyes again and pretended to be still sleeping. Now was my chance to get to the bottom of this traveling trackball ball mystery. But after that first crash, all was quiet. And btw, My laptop was still on my lap, my trackball was beside me.

Then (JAWS music here....) CHOMP!! Something grabbed the trackball that was attached to my laptop and like the scene in Jaws where the buoys that are attached to the shark get pulled underwater, my trackball got pulled down onto the floor and then started to disappear under the bed. I decided to stay quiet, not intervene, and let this trackball shark drama play itself out

Thwacking noises emanated from under the bed that clearly indicated the trackball was being banged around against the wall behind the headboard. Then....silence again. It stayed silent for awhile, I don't know how long.

Suddenly a couple of the cats on the bed alerted and turned their heads toward the bedroom doorway that leads to the living room. I quickly thought how glad I was that I'd left on a small light in the living room so I'd be able to see what it was that had alerted the cats.

Out from under the bottom corner of the bed nearest the living room doorway came a little black shadow that was unmistakably...Uno. She had obviously managed to get the ball out of the trackball and now was busily rolling it toward the doorway with her front paws. When she reached the doorway, she performed a maneuver that astounded me. In one swift motion she somehow got one forepaw under the ball and with the other forepaw on the the upper part of the ball and half scooped, half threw the ball upward and forward with enough momentum that it neatly flew right across the doorsill and dropped onto the living room carpet on the other side about a foot away from a big chair that sits in the living room near the bedroom door. As soon as the ball landed, Uno swiftly rolled it under the chair.

At this point, I got up and as soon as Uno heard me get up, she took off in the opposite direction as cats usually do when they're doing things they shouldn't and don't want their humans to catch them in the act. I retrieved the ball from under the chair, fished the trackball out from under the bed, put the ball back in it, and put the trackball in a drawer. As far as I know, Uno hasn't figured out how to open drawers yet!

Although I don't appreciate any cat messing with my trackballs or any of my other computer equipment, I still had to admire the cleverness of that little one-eyed cat for her problem solving skills and the way she so neatly used every bit of cover to her utmost advantage. Uno's initial "Jaws" strike on the trackball cord was made from under the bed and then she promptly dragged the trackball back under the bed. Her manipulations to dislodge the ball from the trackball were all done out of sight under the headboard and against the wall. It amazes me how she figured out that hitting the trackball against the wall was a good way to knock the ball out of the trackball. I wish I could have had x-ray vision to see just how she did it.

The spot where Uno emerged from under the bed to head for the doorway was the absolute closest spot possible to that doorway. The spot where she went under the chair in the living room was the closest place to the door where she could get out of the open and go back undercover again. Her dexterity at manipulating the ball across the doorsill really surprised me. As I said before, a trackball ball is heavy, solid, and smooth. I wouldn't have expected any cat to even be able to get it off the ground with her forepaws. How Uno managed to hang onto and control the ball well enough to scoop it up and hurl it across the doorsill with her forepaws the way she did. It was a remarkable feat of coordination, skill, and timing, made even more remarkable by the fact that the ball landed only a foot from the chair that was the nearest possible place where she could get under cover and out of sight again.

We humans are supposed to be smarter than animals but if that's true, how is it that a little cat is able to make it a serious challenge for me to try to figure out a way to convince her to leave my trackballs alone? For a moment I was thinking how nice it would be if Uno and the other cats could turn their energy and cleverness to doing something useful such as changing their own kitty litter or doing the dishes. Then I come to the realization, in a lot of ways our cats really are smarter than we humans! After all it's the cats who figured out how to psych us humans into willingly becoming their slaves. The cats are so smart they've even managed to psych us humans into enjoying being their slaves!!!

 
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