Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Rules According to Cats

I'll be away from my computer for a few days as I travel to Kingston, Ontario to attend my son's graduation from Royal Military College, and to celebrate his becoming a Commissioned Officer in the Canadian Forces. Remind me to bring lots of tissues. I'll reply to comments and visit your blogs sometime after my return later this weekend.

Yesterday's mystery image was a VERY close up view of the green beads in the photo below. Quite a few of you got that right. Thanks for playing along.

This is a partial re-post from two and a half years ago when Benny first started coming around to my house for visits. Those of you who read regularly, know that he brings Frank here with him just about every weekend now, but in those days, Benny's trips in were fewer and farther between. Consequently, it took time for Benny and my cats to get to know one another. The cats did not like this canine intrusion in their quiet lives - at first.

The words below were crafted by my intelligent felines in anticipation of Benny's next visit. At that time, Zephyr had recently been hospitalized and had endured surgery. Therefore he was not feeling tip-top when he coerced Skitty into writing this letter. He has healed well since this ordeal and is totally back to his normal self. With that information in mind, I present to you...

The Rules According to Cats

Dear Benny Russell Terror,

It's been some time since you have been to our house, and we don't entirely mind your presence, but there are a few rules that you need to learn before your next visit.

1) Your mere presence in our home does not mean that you can have the same privileges we do. Doggie paws are icky and should not be allowed on any table surface, regardless of whether our people are eating or not. You don't spend hours cleaning and fluffing like we do, therefore you have dirty paws. Stay down.

2) Similarly, you're not allowed on our beds. You smell, and you drool in your sleep. That's disgusting. The only non-felines allowed on the beds are our people. By feeding us gourmet dinners and worshipping our every move, they have earned their right to lie under the blankets and lay their heads on the pillows. You have your own smelly little bed, and that's where you must sleep. Get over it.

3) While you're having dinner, our job is to sit on the table or shelves above you to see what you are eating, and if one of us finds it appealing, we may swoop down in front of you and take what we want. This does not give you the right to wander over to our own unfinished meal. Our food is our food. Your food is our food.

4) You must cease your vulgar behaviour of humping the pillows, your toys, the sofa, the man's foot, the carpet and any living creature that allows you to get close enough to mount it. Most of the dogs in the neighbourhood are five times your size, and would require a step ladder for you to even see your target. Give it up.

5) You must learn how to restrain yourself when we allow you to play outside in our yard. It's offensive to our sensibilities that you think so little of our space that you immediately take a dump out there. What do you think this is - a giant litter box? Restrain yourself.

6) Be silenced. What is that hideous yelp that comes from your throat every time we playfully hiss at you? It hurts our ears. One would think you're being murdered. If you don't want us to turn around and look at you, then don't chase us, for heaven's sake. The same goes for your growling. It sounds like a pathetic attempt to purr and we all know that inferior animals can not purr. Just be quiet.

7) Learn some restraint. Do you not understand that when the people call you by name, clap their hands and make bird-like noises at you, that you're supposed to simply appear irritated and ignore them? Instead you come running out from the farthest recesses of the house or yard to see what they have for you. Foolish canine, they just want to control you, and you're willing to sell yourself for a mere rub on the head. Have you no pride?

8) Stop your incessant jumping. You don't need to launch yourself into the air every time the people touch your leash. How are they supposed to clip it onto your collar if you don't hold still. Nobody is happier than we are to see you go away for a nice looooong walk, so just hold still and cooperate. Settle down.

9) Get down. The human lap is reserved for cats only. You may not wiggle your way onto one of our people, and steal our rightful pats and belly rubs. For some reason, my people think you're pretty adorable. We're not fooled by your head-cocks and cute little noises. The people belong to us. Stay down.

10) This is the most important rule of all. You are NOT to laugh at how one of us looks since a recent stay at the vet. There have been a couple of unfortunate encounters with the surgeon's razor and knife. Ten days later, one of us returned home wearing a most unbecoming stretchy outfit and a ridiculous blue collar. It is to be worn for the next few weeks, and should your next visit intersect with that period of time, you must refrain from staring, laughing or feeling superior. Remember to ignore it, that it isn't funny, and that you are inferior. Hissssss.

If you can accomplish these simple rules, we will continue to endure your presence in our home. You are a dog. You will never be one of us. But play by the rules and we may just tolerate your existence.

Very Mewly Yours,

Skittles & Zephyr

Benny has long since been neutered and is no longer trying to mount elephants - very often.


Steve Gravano said...

I'm so glad you re-posted The Rules. Our cat Sasha has some of the same rules for Isabel.
Congratulations on your son's graduation, have a save trip and bring plenty of tissues.

Brian Miller said...

hahaha. love these rules...i imagine my cat would think quite the same...smiles.

Sueann said...

Love the "rules"!! That is just what a cat would say too!
Lovin' the blue collar...I know...I was whispering!!
What wonderful news about your sons' graduation. That is super!! And don't forget...take a handkerchief. Last longer than tissues and your don't get that tissue fuzz under your nose.
Hugging you

abb said...

This is just wonderful! Great way to start the day - laughing.

Bonnie Zieman, M.Ed. said...

Fun read, your rules according to cats, Hilary!

Have a wonderful weekend seeing your son graduate. Such a special occasion. You must be very proud.

Thumbelina said...

Fabulous! Glad you reposted - brilliantly written and just what my cats would say.
Congratulations to your son and a big hug for a very proud mom. I hope you enjoy your weekend. I will get in touch soon.

DeniseinVA said...

I missed this post the first time round and absolutely LOVE it! Thanks for the chuckles. That's lovely about your son. Safe and happy travels!

Joanne said...

You know the old saying ... Cats Rule, Dogs Drool ;)

Have a wonderful time this weekend, you must be so proud of your son.

Mental P Mama said...

LOLOLOL! Learn some restraint...spoken like a true cat!

messymimi said...

Excellent rules.

I'm sure my cats would concur if we had a dog, and if my parent's dog visits again, we will help them by applying them to her. :)

Daryl said...

So fun ...

LadyFi said...

Hilarious.. I laughed my way through all of these rules!

Frank Baron said...

Only Zephyr seems to be a stickler for those rules now. Skitty has long since gone over to the dark side and almost/nearly/kinda enjoys Ben's attentions.

See you in Kingston in a few hours. ;)

the Bag Lady said...

You must be so very proud of your son! Tell him congratulations from me.
Thanks for posting the rules again. I'm sure Benny needed the reminder.

CiCi said...

Wow, I don't know how people were able to get the mystery image. It was a tough one I thought.
Enjoy the entire celebration surrounding your son's graduation!! This is quite an honor.

I guess the cats told Benny!

Pat - Arkansas said...

First: congratulations and best wishes to your son. It's OK to take lots of tissues for this occasion, Mom.

Loved "The Rules." I'm sure my cats feel the same way about the occasional visits from Gardening Daughter's dogs. If only they could write as well as Skittles and Zephyr, there is no telling what would show up on my own blog.

L. D. said...

It is hard to have our children growing up but in the end it is a good thing. Love the cat rules. Jack Russell would probably eat up the rules off of the paper they were written on. Enjoy the trip. Congrats to the son.

Joanna Jenkins said...

A great big congratulations to you son! What a major accomplishment. And congrats to you and your husband for raising such a fine young man!

High fives all around!

photowannabe said...

I'm so glad you relisted the rules too. I missed them the first time around.
Your cats really stated how it is in the Animal Kingdom. I sat here and laughed all by my self.
Congratulations on your son's graduation and commissioning as an officer. Its a proud moment and tissues are allowed.

Kelly H-Y said...

Love the 'beads' photo. Congrats to your son ... have a spectacular trip!!!

Karen said...

Hilary, congrats on your son's graduation! I know how proud you must be! My son served here. Yes, bring tissues, and I look forward to seeing plenty of graduation memories.

June said...

Congratulations to all on your son's graduation. I'd be sodden from beginning to end. Bring high-quality paper towels!

Oh boy, the cats' rules are just perfect. "Stay down" has exactly the right tone.

Country Girl said...

OMGosh, this is funny. Especially the very last line.
Congratulations! about your son. Oh, that is wonderful. Take the whole box 'o tissues. You should be very proud.

Scott Law said...

Super clever. I really got a good laugh from this one. Hope you have a great time and look forward to your return.

Cloudia said...

Wonderful post.

SALUTES to your Son and to YOU!

Aloha from Hawaii

Comfort Spiral

Zuzana said...

Enjoy your weekend dear Hilary, lovely pictures as always and I so agree on the sentiments of cats,

Grayquill said...

You must be very proud of your son. That is a major accomplishment - good job raisng such a fine son!
I hope you are proud of yourself as well.
Enjoy and savor the moment!

Dave said...

A very clever and amusing set of visitor rules by 'your cats' Hilary. I enjoyed them. - Dave

Dave said...

Congratulations on your son's graduation and promotion. You must be very proud of him! - Dave

Linda said...

So the cats laid down the law to Benny. How did he take that? He seems too impish to take their rules seriously. Maybe a few well-placed swats convinced him?

Have a great weekend with your son. I know you must be so proud.

Debbie said...

Congratulations to you and your son! What a wonderful accomplishment.

Clowncar said...

clever. as is the name Zephyr.

we have a complex set of protocols involving our two young and frisky cats and our old, grouchy one. I can imagine old one writing a similar letter to the youngsters.

nice post.

Redbush said...

How hilarious! Love the photos, especially the blue collar one! I can just see every cat making these!

Mage said...

Congratulations to your son....and smiles at the rules. :) See you when you get home.

Unspoken said...

CUTE post! I was surprised at the rules until I saw the "authors"!

Unspoken said...

You will cry, I have no doubt. Enjoy you son and his day. Yours too, huh :)?

Hilary said...

Thanks everyone for the kind comments. I'm back from Kingston but still away from home for a couple of days. I'll visit your blogs a little bit into the week

* Steve, I'm glad you enjoyed the rules.. cats are all alike, aren't they? Thanks for the kind words. :)

* Brian, they're all wily rascals. :)

* SueAnn, I can tell you know cats well. :) Good advice about the handkerchief. I wish I'd seen it before I went. I'm still wiping tissue fuzz from my nose. ;)

* Thanks, TSannie. I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

* Thank you, Bonnie. I am indeed bursting with pride. It was a great couple of days. :)

* Thumbellina, thank you, my friend. It was a wonderful event. I'll write about it soon-ish. Hugs right back at you! :)

* Thanks very kindly, Denise. I'm glad you enjoyed the post and I so appreciate your good wishes. :)

* Thanks very much, Joanne. I am filled with pride, for sure. Thanks for your warm words. :)

* MPM, you know them well. ;) Thanks for the visit. :)

* Thanks, Messymimi. I'm glad I could be of some help. ;)

* Thanks, Daryl. :)

* Thanks, Lady Fi. I'm glad I could make you laugh. :)

* True, Frank. Things have changed some over these few years. I had a great time in Kingston. :)

* Baggie, you're right. Benny does need the reminder every now and then. But rarely more than 3.. 4 times a day. Thanks for your warm wishes. I will indeed give Jeffrey your congrats. :)

* Thanks very kindly, TechnoBabe. It was a wonderful series of events. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. :)

* Thank you so much Pat. I did bring lots and dabbed often. I'm glad you enjoyed the cat rules. :)

* Thanks kindly, Larry. It is difficult but yes, it's a good thing. Any you're probably right about Benny eating the rules had they been on paper. It's a good thing that everything's electronic these days. :)

Hilary said...

* Thank you SO much, Joanna. Your good wishes and warm words mean a lot to me. :)

* Sue, thanks so much. I'm glad the Cat Rules made you laugh. :) And thanks kindly for the congrats. The tissues got a workout for sure. :)

* Thanks very kindly, Kelly. Much appreciated. :)

* Thanks very much, Karen. And to your son as well for serving. I will have photos in a while.. once I get them all organized.. sometime after I get back home. Thanks for your always kind words. :)

* June, thank for the paper towel advice. You weren't far from the truth. Thanks for the kind words. And I'm glad you enjoyed the cat rules. :)

* Thanks very kindly, Kate. It was a very proud series of moments for us. I'm glad you enjoyed the cat rules. :)

* Thanks very much Scot. I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

* Thank you kindly, Cloudia. Very much appreciated. :)

* Thanks very much, Zuzana. Your kindness is always so appreciated. :)

* Thanks very kindly, Grayquill. His Dad and I are incredibly proud of that boy. Your kind words mean a lot to me. Thank you. :)

* Thanks very much, Dave. We are indeed. :)

* Linda, thanks kindly. You have Benny pegged just about right. He keeps bugging them but takes them seriously when they swat him. Thanks for your kind words. :)

* Thanks very kindly, Debbie. Very much appreciated. :)

* Thanks, Clowncar. I'm glad you enjoyed it. The name Zephyr really suits him. He's like a quiet but warm, gentle breeze. Thanks for the visit. :)

* Thanks very much, Redbrush. I'm glad you enjoyed them. :)

* Thank you, Maggie. Very much appreciated. :)

* Thank you, Amy. I didn't mean to trick you with the cat rules. And you were right - of course I cried. Thanks for the very kind words. :)

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Love, love, love the rules...too funny..."Our food is our food; your food is our food..." You've nailed this Hilary! Purrrrrrfect catspeak (sorry, couldn't resist...) Love Benny...I'm very partial to terriers of any kind!

Congratulations to your son! That's an incredible accomplishment! You must be extremely proud! Have a wonderful time...and travel safely. We'll look forward to your return! ~Janine XO

Dianne said...

congrats on Jeffrey's graduation
give him a hug from me

Siren and Isadora applaud this letter

ds said...

Mr. Man and Miss Moo applaud these rules (daintily, of course) and wish to adopt them. Of course, they do not have to deal with a Dog.

Many, many congratulations (and vicarious tissues) to you on Jeffrey's graduation and commission! Such a proud moment for you both. Well done *loud applause (not dainty)*!!!

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

I'm sure that our house queen Cleopatra approves of those rules. She does not yet realize what the future holds, and her lack of knowledge keeps the peace; however, some day a dog will join the family and rock her world.

CONGRATULATIONS to Jeffrey (and his very proud mum)!

Teri and her Stylish Adventure Cats said... did we miss this post? We are furrtunate not having to share our home with SmellyDog, but we know many cats who do...and they would probably enjoy reading over your rules, too!

Ruth L.~ said...

Oh, smart, smart cats! Loved this post.

Hilary said...

• Janine, thanks very much. I'm glad that the Cat Rules tickled your funny bone. Thanks also for your kind wishes and congrats. You bet I'm proud. It was a wonderful few days and I'll have to start uploading my photos soon. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Dianne, thank you, my friend. I read this a bit too late for the extra hug but next visit for sure! Thanks also to Siren and Isadora. I knew that Skitty and Zephyr would attract allies. ;)

• DS, Mr. Man and Miss Moo are welcome to implement any and all rules as needed. Thank you so much for the warm sentiments about my son. They're so appreciated. I'll write about the event soon. :)

• KC, thank you so much for the congrats. I will make sure Jeffrey knows he has such kind support from my bloggie buddies. Cleopatra will always rule the roost but her life might just become a bit more colourful - especially if the new member is a terrier. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Terri's cats, feel free to share the Cat Rules with all of your feline buddies. Cats have to stick together where SmellyDogs are concerned. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Welcome, Ruth and thanks for the kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. Please return again soon. :)

Midlife Roadtripper said...

I'm all for graduations. And, yes, bring the tissues. Congratulations.

Hilary said...

Thanks, MJ. I sure did. :)

Cheryl Kohan said...

How did I miss this post? I love, love, love it! As a confirmed cat lover I can relate to the logic of Skittles and Zephyr. Makes perfect sense to me. I think #7 is my favorite.

Quick daughter (Jennie) has a cat named Eva. Eva is eighteen years old (I think). Jennie recently met a nice young man who has a dog. She said that they were going to bring the dog to her house to "introduce" the pets to each other.

I said, "Well, Eva will probably just run and hide somewhere, stay out of sight and it'll be no problem." And Jennie said, "Well, THAT wouldn't be very fair...after all, it's HER house"!

Hilary said...

Cheryl that story is hilarious. It's funny to think that way, and yet in the animal world it is all about territory. Cats would rather just hide out for the duration of a visit though. Mine were like that at first but as they no longer perceived Benny as a serious threat they've begun to relax. At least one of them has. Thanks for sharing this story. Did they ever work it out in the end?

I'm glad you enjoyed the Cat Rules. Cats do make life a lot of fun. Thanks for the visit. :)