Wednesday 07 Dec 2016

Cat House
Jennifer Flaten

I always try to have a minimum of three cats. Why three, well, why not three. Really, I don’t know how I ended up one cat away from crazy cat-lady status, but I am. It just snuck up on me, for the longest time we had two cats.

Then one day a co-worker rescued a batch of kittens near his home. Soon he was showing adorable pictures of kittens to everyone at the office in hopes of suckering one of us into adopting them. It worked. From then on, I’ve had three cats. Only one dog though, but each dog has been the equivalent of three dogs.

That’s okay; they go well with my three children: one cat per kid. This means no waiting and no fighting. Oh, wait there is always fighting if you have multiple children, now it is over who gets to hold what cat. Aren’t they all the same? No, apparently they are not. One cat is much better to hold than is the other.

What cat is better to hold? Why the cat that your brother or sister is holding of course.

Before you have children, your pets can have cool names like Thor, Killer or Mobius, after you have children your pets tend to have names like Snuggles, Kitty or Mr. Fluffy. That is if you let your children name the pets. I don’t let them.

Actually, after the kids accused me of running a dictatorship-damn, that school teaching them stuff-I relented and let the kids help name our new cats.

Yes, we adopted two cats. Kittens if you want to be precise No, this does not push me over my three-cat limit. We are at three cats again, after running with just one cat for several months.

The lone cat, while not happy to have interlopers, is secretly thrilled not to be the center of the kid attention. He is now safe to spend his days plotting to overthrow the government or napping, instead of spending his day in the clutches of some small slightly sticky child. 

Despite my insisting we were only adopting one cat, we brought home two cats. They are not related. In fact, they come from two different shelters. Long story short, my second daughter fell in love with a cat at a shelter, but we were unable to bring him home that day.

The next day, visiting another shelter we found the perfect cat for our family, but my daughter really liked cat A. So, sap that I am I said we could go back and see if he was still there.

I wasn’t surprised to see him still at the shelter. He is a very handsome cat, but I don’t think many people were interested in owning a black cat named Nosferatu. I have no such qualms, now I have a set, as Cat number 1 is also black.

We brought him home and rechristened him Noodles-guess who’s idea that was, damn democracy-although the first time he bit me I realized the shelter was on to something with his name.

I am sure you are dying to know the name of our other new cat. Fine, it’s Sprinkles. See I told you that is what happens when you let your children name your pets.

Jennifer Flaten lives where the local delicacy is fried cheese, Wisconsin. She writes about family life, its amusing or not so amusing moments. "At least it's not another article on global warming," she says. Jennifer bakes a mean banana bread and admits an unusual attraction to balloon animals and cup cakes. Busy preparing for the zombie apocalypse, she stills finds time to write "As I See It," her witty, too often true column. "My urge to write," says Jennifer, "is driven by my love of cupcakes, with sprinkles on top. Who wouldn't write for cupcakes, with sprinkles," she wonders.

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