Chancellor Edward Pantsington “Chance” ?/??/2007-2/20/2015

Those of you that follow me on Facebook, already saw this.

It is so very hard to lose a furry family member. It’s funny, we took him on intending to be his caregivers. We were doing a favor for Pat’s mom. It was EvylRobot‘s idea, as I reminded him on multiple occasions. We never really expected him to become such an important family member.


Pat worked for me from 2006 until she passed away in 2011 from breast cancer. It was ugly. Folks, seriously, don’t buy into the snake oil some people try and sell you over the internet. If you do, you may find yourself in a situation where your nurses break a crap ton of HIPAA  regulations and give your much younger boss detailed medical information so she can convince your mother not to put you on a ventilator once you’ve died but before your body has figured it out. Not a thing I should have ever had to do, but I did it. I’d do it again.

But this isn’t about Pat. This is about Chance. Even though we already had a house full of critters, Evyl thought we should adopt Chance. And so we found ourselves at Pat’s mom’s house. I had crammed myself into the space at the end of the entertainment center where I spoke gently to this absolutely terrified ball of white fluff. He’d had so much upheaval in his world, all he wanted to do was hide under the bed. He certainly did not want to chat with this strange lady that kept insisting that everything was going to be alright. He eventually relented and came home with us where he promptly found a place to hide. It was the worst thing ever. If we so much as looked at him wrong, he’d growl this amazing wall shaking growl, hiss, and lose bowel control.




We thought we’d made a terrible mistake. But then he came out of hiding. At first just a little.



He was still scared. It was around this time that Ferrule found it entertaining to mess with the newcomer. Cats can be jerks sometimes, but even though Chance had been declawed on all four corners, he found a way to overcome.


Soon, Ferrule stopped being a jerk. They still fought, but they fought like any siblings fight, but they loved each other like brothers.


Chance freaking loved all the critters in his new family.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


But he loved the dog most of all. Sometimes he slept in her crate.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

He was exuberant in all the many ways he loved his life. If he spoke, this is a cat that would have said ‘dude’. As in, “Dude! I just got this great idea. I’m going to get in your lap now.” Or, “Dude! Cat Tree!”

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

In the end, he was with the people he loved. Evyl wanted to bring him into our lives and lovingly shepherded him out. Chance put his head in his hand and left in peace.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

For those interested in the technicals, it was an aortic thromboembolism. A blood clot blocked the blood flow from his waist down. There really was nothing that could be done, mercifully sparing us from watching him slowly dwindle away and needing to make some decision about when was the right time and how much suffering was enough.


Feline Wisdom for 2015

Well since my 2013 resolution was never broken nor fulfilled, my resolution obligation remains in limbo. So I’m just going to let Ferrule take over the blog today. He’s been reading my Facebook news feed and judging you.


He even took over my keyboard.



Yes, that was Ferrule. He’s very helpful. He’s got some words of wisdom for 2015.

1. Sit more. Sitting makes laps and laps are for sits. It’s where petting happens.

2. Make peace with the pet hair. I’m just going to make more.

3. Strings! They are great, just had to mention it.

4. Poop happens. Sometimes when you least expect it.

5. The loud thing with headlight that eats cat hair? Just put it away. See number 2

6. When something bothers you, bite its butt, fluff your tail, and strut away.

7. Dude. Catnip. Dude.

8. There will always be more kibble in the bowl, don’t stress about it.

9. Go to the backdoor and sing about your adventures. Preferably while your humans are engrossed in the warm boxes with the screens that they keep on their laps. Besides, laps are for sits and petting, not typing.

10. When life gets scary, hide under the buffet until Mama gets home.

This post has been reviewed by the resident feline editor, Chance


Yes, he is also judging you.

Your Pets Are Not Kids

I know, you love your dogs and cats. I do too. I stress and worry and get paranoid over the littlest things. I buy expensive dog food. The dog eats cat poop and sticks from the yard. Which I guess is alright because I also buy expensive cat food so I suppose she at least gets gourmet cat poop.

I get it, really. They are lumps of love that pull at your heartstrings and ask for so very little in return. They give you their whole lives. I even refer to myself as “Mama” in reference to my critters. My mother refers to herself as Heidi’s “gramma”.

And that’s fine. Cute even.

But understand that having pets is not the same as having kids.

The expectations are completely different. I expect my cat to want to cuddle up in my lap for his entire life. He will spend the rest of his days completely dependent on me. He will never become more than he is today. He doesn’t have to learn the hard lessons so he can make it on his own. The repercussions of his bad decisions consist of getting yelled at. I don’t need to instill a work ethic or worry about a college education for the cat.

Also, if I locked my kid in a box while I was away at work, I’d get arrested. Rightfully so.

It’s been a long time since my son wanted to cuddle with his mom. And that’s good thing. You see, as a parent, my goal is to work myself out of a job. One day, my son will be an autonomous adult. That is, if I’m doing my job correctly.

As parents, sometimes we have to make gut-wrenching decisions. We have to take away the one big thing that is our child’s whole world. It really does hurt us more than it hurts them even though they won’t realize it until years later. It would hurt our children far more in the long run if we didn’t teach them those lessons now.

The dog? She’ll keep chasing toads no matter how often I scold her. She’ll roll in the nastiest thing in the yard and continue to be so very proud of it.

Be a pet parent. Be proud of it. Just don’t try to tell me it’s just like having kids.


Resolution Status: Kept and Broken!

Success! And failure! All squished up into a meaningless ball.

I broke and thus kept my 2013 New Year’s Resolution all year long. How’d you do?

Maybe for 2014 I should resolve to share more cat pictures. Then I can totally win the internet, right? I can even talk about their new cat house and attract a new type of visitors!

It is a rather impressive cat house.


Or maybe I should just resolve to dust the ceiling.


Emerson has resolved to kill the mouse

Siamese Mouser

No Inspiration. Enjoy the Cat Pictures





Wait a minute! There’s a dog in there!

Edited to fix images. Apparently the mobile WordPress didn’t like them

Behold The Power of the Kilt!

To say my cat has spent the last seven years frightened of Michael is really an understatement. It just doesn’t tell the whole story. We’re talking sheer terror. Like, losing bowel control terror. No, I don’t know why.

You see, I rescued this bat-eared feline from the construction site at my office.

ferrule close up


No, he never did grow into those ears. I raised this little critter into the 18 pounds of pathetic mama’s boy that he is today. He has repaid me with lots of head-butts and snuggles and unwavering loyalty.

Until this happened

Click the picture to see Michael’s post


Yes, not only can the kilt raise money for a great cause, but it can tame the wild beast.

So go ahead. Donate. Do it for the kitty. Besides, you might just win a prize.

Oh the Felines!



Mom! Look at me. I’m so cute. Pet me.



Fine. Pay attention to the glowy thing.



We’ll just get in a pile over here





My precious.

Yes, they really are that ‘helpful.’ And apparently, I am not alone.

Cat paws in a fifteenth-century manuscript (photo taken at the Dubrovnik archives by @EmirOFilipovic)
Cat paws in a fifteenth-century manuscript (photo taken at the Dubrovnik archives by @EmirOFilipovic)

Cats have been ‘helping’ with content creation for centuries. And mice have never eaten my blog. Coincidence?

It was inevitable that they would take over the internet. It is their destiny.


Magical Force-Fields

Ferrule and his magical force-field

This is Ferrule and his magical force-field   I know it looks remarkably like an animal print throw, but to Ferrule, it’s magical.  You see, Ferrule was a feral kitten once.  I rescued him from the construction at my office when he was about 5 weeks old.  His mother was no where to be found, and it was clear he was on his own. So I brought the giant eared, nearly hairless, flea-ridden tiny bundle home, much to Evyl’s dismay.

I took care of the fleas, fed him KMR, and nursed him back to health.  Today, nearly 7 years later, that little bundle has grown into 17 pounds of feline. Like most rescued feral cats, he’s high strung. But he loves and trusts me completely. When he’s with me, all is right with the world.

Unless the TV is on.  He was once frightened by a character spraying fire suppressing foam back at the viewer.  He’s been terrified of the moving pictures on the wall ever since. So this is Ferrule’s dilemma.  He wants desperately to be in my lap, but his irrational fear is overwhelming.

Enter the magical force-field. It protects him from the scary moving pictures and allows him to feel safe and secure in my lap. As long as he can’t see the screen, he’s safe.

It’s kind of like this force-field


It makes him feel safe from those that wouldn’t harm him while offering no real protection from those that might.  It’s a false sense of security against imagined threats. In the unlikely event that someone busted into my house to terrorize my cat, it wouldn’t be the zebra print blanket that would protect him.

But he believes he is safe under the blanket.  He’s a cat.  He also believes if he sings to the birds in the yard, they will be charmed into becoming his next meal.  Never mind that he is also terrified of the outdoors. I don’t expect him to be rational.

People should be capable of more and yet too many allow themselves to be fooled.  Don’t put your faith in magical force-fields.  There is no sign and no law that will guarantee your safety.  Nothing can do that.  What you can do is prepare and give yourself a fighting chance.