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They Stole More Than Just Cat Food

It's bad enough that Maria had a lousy day yesterday. A long day at work, followed by being caught in a downpour while waiting for the bus. Tired and wet as she was, she kept her commitment to cleaning out cat cages at Petsmart. It was a long day. She finally made her way home around 9pm.

I told her there was a shipment of cat food waiting for her by the garage. UPS verified the delivery. I was anxious for her to get the food since I knew she was running low and this food was for Polly and her family...who are STILL STRUGGLING to beat their URI!

As she walked down her driveway, she saw the shipment, but the box looked funny. Then she realized, it had been ripped open. Her heart sank.

©2010 Maria Sandoval.

As she lifted the lid, her worst fears were realized.

©2010 Maria Sandoval.

It was empty-save for the invoice from Pet Food Direct and the air filled plastic cushions to keep the cases of cat food from being damaged.

What sort of heartless moron would STEAL CAT FOOD...and from a CAT RESCUE GROUP??!!! Donations are tough enough to come by and now this?

Maria gave me a call. I missed picking up the phone. I heard her voicemail and she sounded terrible. I thought Polly was dead!!! When we were finally able to talk, she told me what happened. I was stunned that someone would stoop so low as to steal food. Could we have bought a big bag of dry food for a few dollars, instead of shipping cases of canned food? Well, no, we couldn't. We feed a grain-free, canned food diet, which has kept our foster kittens in much better health and at their fragile age is MUCH easier for them to digest and mix with the milk replacer they also eat. We may spend more on food, but in the long run we'll save more on Vet care since our babies will be in better health if we get them off on the “right paw” to begin with.

Maria actually filed a police report. This is the second time someone stole from her yard. The last time it was a nice cat carrier she had left outside to dry after she washed it out. A few hours later-it was gone. She originally thought it was a fluke, but now she realizes either the local kids are thieves or her neighbor who has many cats (and dogs) and no income, may have done the deed. She spoke to the woman who acted surprised that Maria would make a fuss over stolen cat food. I told Maria to check the woman's trash in a few days!There aren't many people that live in Maria's neighborhood to begin with..this is all so messed up.

The shipment cost $90.00 and I had to send out a second shipment last night to replace the one that was lost and it cost more money..the price went up. So there goes another $110.00. I called my credit card company and the purchase insurance does not cover food. I contact Pet Food Direct and they are talking to UPS, but the feeling is nothing can be done since the package was delivered. This may change, but it will be a week to ten days before I get an update.

In the meantime, our babies need to eat. If you'd like to help us recover our loss, we would dearly appreciate it. It really feels like those creeps stole more than just cat food—they stole our faith in humanity.

Maria got two hours of sleep last night. Cara, Polly's sister, is not doing well. Another kitten from another litter had a 104.6°F fever. Maria looked after them until early this morning. Now she's back at work, trying not to face-plant on her desk. I wish I could do more than just order cat food for her, but there are some things that can't be done from 1000 miles distance.

If you know Maria, do send her a note to tell her you're sending good thoughts, good wishes, support. Is this life or death? Heck no, but Maria is our friend, our super-foster mama. We need to rally around her so she can continue to care for quite a few ailing kittens. Maybe our goal is as simple as being a good neighbor—something that Maria does not seem to have.

WHAT THE...?!!!!

Dear Vet-Whoever-You-Are,

You are the lowest form of money-grubbing slug there ever was-what you did for a buck not only sickens me, it makes me FURIOUS! YOU SHOULD LOSE YOUR LICENSE!!!!! AND IF I KNEW WHO YOU WERE I WOULD SEND EVERYONE I KNOW AFTER YOUR BLOATED ASS TO TAKE A BIG CHUNK OUT OF IT!

Why am I so angry?

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©2010 Robin A.F. Olson. Bobbi at Connie's house a few weeks ago.

Bobbi got returned to AID last week. That's really tragic and I'm VERY disappointed in her temporary adopter. They assured us they would GO SLOWY introducing Bobbi to their other cat, but they just couldn't manage it. They couldn't deal with Bobbi hissing-which is normal or the fact that Bobbi went after their other cat. Bobbi has only been in FIVE other temporary homes-each with many cats-over the past MONTH. Do you THINK that MAYBE she needed a few WEEKS to just get her bearings and TRUST in her surroundings? NO. You didn't wait or give her a chance. Like her family before, you gave up on her, too. Not great, but not the end of the world.

This is it. Sit DOWN in your CHAIR. Stop driving or whatever you are doing...

I got an email from Connie tonight. Bobbi has been doing great back at the shelter. Not fighting with the other cats. Getting along fine...then tonight...



WHAT THE...?!!!!!!!


Did I go to sleep, then wake up in a parallel universe full of asshats? I mean, really? WHAT IS GOING ON IN THIS WORLD WHERE THIS MADE SENSE TO SOMEONE? Did the moron who owned Bobbi hold a GUN to the VET'S head and MAKE him declaw the cat? That is the ONLY explanation that makes any sense to me!

I think my head is going to explode.

Meanwhile, Miss Bobbi is going to be SPAYED very very soon-on our dime. No problem. Worth every penny.

As for the Vet...all I have to say is Karma is a BITCH.

Foster Cat Journal: Question of the Day

For those of you wondering what the heck happened to me and why I didn't post this past week, it can be summed up thusly: Kitten Associates is (somewhat) Open for Business!

After weeks of preparation and endless head-scratching on how to set Adoption Policies, I finally have enough cobbled together where we can start promoting our group and sharing the kittens we have for adoption. Yes, the time has come!

Kitten Associates brand new main page. You can visit us at:

This week I started getting Pre-Adoption Applications. I ask many questions on my Ap in the hopes I can understand potential adopters better and figure out if they'll be a good match for my kittens. I've been accused of being too picky or asking for too much. Maybe that's true, but I'd rather be able to sleep at night, knowing I did what I felt was right, instead of just trying to move animals out the door. I don't have a shelter and I'm not "open admissions" so I have the luxury of taking time...just not too much or the kittens will be too big.

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©2010 Robin A.F. Olson. How cute is Cinnie?!

Speaking of size, the girls were big enough to be spayed this week, so I got myself over to H.O.P.E at a way-too-early 7:30AM drop off time (okay, it's 8AM, but I got there early). The person doing admissions and I had a little snitty conversation about what to feed the cats. Apparently, dry food is good for cleaning cats teeth (one of the biggest mis-truths out there) and dry food “has special vitamins and minerals that kittens need for optimum health.” Really? And what vitamins and minerals are these? Corn? Wheat? Sugar? I was so shocked...then she said I should be working with my Vet to make sure my cats aren't suffering or getting the wrong nutrition. As if VETS know about nutrition! My Own Vets both told me they did not get much of anything regarding nutrition when they were in school. I really wanted to slap this woman in the face, but since this is a low cost S/N Clinic, I had to bite my tongue-which would have had better nutrition in it than some of those kibble foods..blah. Hey, it's great for dogs, but dogs are not cats. I only wished Margaret Gates from FNES had been there with me to let this woman have it.

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©2010 Robin A.F. Olson. Sugar Pie shows off her hunting skillz.

The kittens are home now and doing well. I de-wormed them again and all of a sudden, they're starting to get a little padding on their frame-finally. They have been too skinny (probably because of the dry food I refuse to feed them...hmpf!), but now they feel REALLY soft (from the grain-free and raw food they get) and chubby. I love it.

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©2010 Robin A.F. Olson. Yodel and her goofy little expression.

So my next task is to find homes. I've gotten many applications on Honey B. and Sugar Pie and I'm sorting through them. I already said; No, to a family-who felt I was being unfair saying no when I suggested they adopt a 5 or 6 month old kitten to a 1 yr or older cat because they have FOUR KIDS and a DOG. One of the kids is 3. Although they were a great family, just not for a tiny kitten. I think it would be too much on the cat and if the littlest child got hurt or bitten, then what?

It leaves me with a nagging question: How do I find homes where they won't EVER give up on these kittens? Where they will take good care of them for the rest of their life? Where they won't balk if it costs $1000.00 for Vet care should the cat fall ill. Where, if they break up with their boyfriend or husband or whatever, they won't give up the cat, too? I know. I can't solve all the issues, but how do I cut it down so that the fewest cats are at risk of ever being returned?

Two days ago I got a call from the adopter of two of Santa's Team, kittens. These were Donner and Dancer, the two kittens I felt went to the wrong home, who I tried to get back-unsuccessfully. Now they want to give up Dancer because she is "too shy." The one person in the family-an 18 yr old daughter, who was working with the kitten, has moved out and now the kitten only hides...this was one of the reasons, I wanted the cat back months ago.

So I told the person, I would help him either work out the behavior issues so he can keep the cat or he would have to return it to where he adopted it from...and that I no longer have a relationship with this group. He said he would call me back.

I haven't heard from him since.

Now I wonder...will the cat be given up, given to a shelter, let outside? I have no idea. This is what I face times 6 more cats...

This is the tough stuff. How to find great homes for little kittens who need more work than adults, more love (maybe?) and certainly careful guidance so they group up to be outstanding companions.

Where are you wonderful families and folks? Where are you? What question do I need the answer to to KNOW you will do right by my fosters?

When Kitty Rescue Comes Close to Home

Most of you know my husband and I have horses. We board them at a farm not far from our house. There are a lot of barn cats there, and a number of our cats came from the farm when they got sick or hurt and we took them home. Every Spring and Summer, idiots who think a farm automatically needs cats dump kittens at the barn. Sometimes we get these poor lostlings and find them homes, sometimes they are too feral and run away. Josephine feeds them so they don't starve, but still, it's not the life of a loved pet.

Not on My Watch: To KoKo's Owners-You Lousy Piece of Shit!

I'm sick and tired of assholes dumping their “problem” cats upon innocent animal shelters, Vets, mom & pop rescue groups. They're all targets for COWARDS, who refuse to STEP UP and DO the RIGHT THING for their animals. Instead, under the cover of darkness, they sneak up to the door of these places, DUMP their dog or cat, then take off. Some times they leave a note. I bet it's to make them feel better for the shitty thing they're about to do. “Well, I'll leave a note so they'll be sure to know I'm DUMPING the cat, not that the cat got left her by some freak accident.”

This afternoon, I was contacted by our friend, Betsy at Henry County Care & Control in McDonough, GA. She had just finished crying. Betsy has been helping rescue animals from Henry County for decades. She's seen it all and more, yet she's still brokenhearted by people's cruelty to animals.

A cat named KoKo, was brought to Henry County via Animal Control. On Saturday, the cat was DUMPED at the doorstep of a local Vet. They weren't even OPEN so the cat sat there for a day in a crate in the blistering heat! Once the Vet found the cat, they called Animal Control and now the poor thing is on Death Row at HCACC. They are full up! They don't have room to add countless animals to their facility.


KoKo is a brown tabby. Nothing exotic. Not a cute little kitten. Just another cat, whose owners are scum of the Earth. Now this cat has a few days left to live. She can compete for the very few available placements with a rescue or hope that some kind soul will adopt her and give her a DECENT home.

Why did the cat get dumped? Was she aggressive? NO! Was she...I don't know. I can't THINK of any reasons why I'd give up my CATS!!!! I would work with them to find out how to fix whatever behaviors they exhibit that bother me-even if they're doing what is natural to them. Sure, it's tough when the cat pees on the floor, or worse, on your clothes or bed, but when you figure out WHY, then it's better not only for you, but for the cat, too.

So KoKo had little cutesy-pie notes in her carrier. If you read them, your head will burn up and explode...okay, maybe not, but you'll certainly see the bullshit from a mile away and your blood pressure will go up for sure!

This so called “family” adopted KoKo when she was a kitten, since they know her birthday. Oh boy, they drove an entire hour and a half to get her, but apparently, when things didn't work out, they couldn't drive a few minutes to a f-ing VET!

Ahh, the good old “we can't afford the Vet” line-another classic. Did you try to TALK to your VET and work something out? I bet if you got off your lazy, selfish ass you might have found out that the Vet would have taken small payments over time or given you a break, but apparently, that long long, exhausting drive must have been the ONLY thing you did to make an effort for your cat. It's just TOO MUCH to ask that you, the caretaker of this animal, decide that the best thing to do is NOT ask ANY local rescue for help, NOT contact ANYONE, just tip toe up to the door of the Vet, like a common thief and dump your cat! SHAME ON YOU!

I love the way the note is written first hand, as though poor KoKo had written the plea for help, herself. Look at the charming little postscripts! How nice to tell the VICTIM (Vet) who found her that she had some shots. You're so (NOT) nice! Who wouldn't just LOVE the person who wrote this CRAP!!!

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What a faux-thoughtful letter. What nice handwriting. It must have taken hours of careful preparation to write this CRAP. You're not fooling anyone-COWARD!

Poor KoKo. Scared and dumped in a cage. She has no idea what she did to deserve this fate.

If KoKo really HAD written the note, I think this is what she would have said:

Dear Vet,

I got adopted by real assholes. They feed me lousy food and pay me little attention. One of them kicks me if I do anything they don't like, so I'm not so sure I can trust people. I'm not very happy where I live, in fact, I hate it. I've been feeling sick for a long time and they ignore me. I tried to get their attention by pooping on the floor, but they just yelled and rubbed my nose in it. I started peeing, too, but that was because my bladder burns real bad and I can't hold it in. I wish they would feed me better food and take me to the cat doctor so I could feel good again.

When no one cared about me, I finally gave up and just pooped and peed everywhere I could. One of them said he would kill me, so the other one said she would “deal with me” whatever that means.

So here I am, at your doorstep. I guess I got away from those horrible people, but now I'm in a jam. I don't have a place to live and I heard if I don't have one, either I will slowly starve to death living outdoors or I will be put to death at those places where they keep all the animals people give up on. I wish I could talk. I would only tell you that if you could help me feel better, I would be such a good friend to you. I would give you kisses and sleep on your lap and tell you I love you, in my way, but something tells me, maybe it's too late for me...

...but at least I'm away from those assholes.

Sincerely yours,


P.S. Please change my name so I can forget my awful past.


But wait! There's more! One note was simply not enough! Betsy believes this one was probably written by the same person, but used the hand they don't normally write with so it looks like a kid wrote it. If a kid really DID write this, then their parents should be tossed in JAIL for abuse!

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The bullshit parade continues! Maybe if they spent the time it took to write these notes to CALL their VET and work something out, this would not have happened!

Letter 1. Henry Co. R.Olson.jpg

Betsy tells me that KoKo has PERFECT litter box habits. She's probably not sick and if she had a behavior issue with the other cats she lived with, that could have been resolved-IF ANYONE HAD BOTHERED TO GET OF THEIR LAZY ASS AND TRY TO HELP THIS CAT.


WE NEED TO FIND A RESCUE PLACEMENT OR ADOPTER FOR THIS POOR, 2 year old CAT. INFO ON HOW TO HELP HER IS BELOW. As always, go with your heart. If you can't help her out, then help get the word out to everyone you know. Let's show KoKo that not all people SUCK-just the ones she lived with.

PLEASE REFER TO THIS ID# 8/16-3406 when contacting HCC&C.

Nice tabby “M” I see! Lovely girl!

We are very rescue friendly and are more than happy to work with any rescue group as long as the group has a valid Georgia Department of Agriculture license! Any rescue group, whether in or out of state, that takes pets from Georgia shelters, is required, by Georgia law, to have a rescue license issued by the Georgia Department of Agriculture's Animal Protection Division. Having tax exempt status is not the same as a license. For more information on obtaining a license, please call (404) 656-4914.


Henry County Animal Care and Control

527 Hampton Street

McDonough, Georgia 30253

(770) 288-7401

Our Hours:

Monday-Friday: 9 am-4:30 pm

Saturday: 9 am-1 pm

Sunday: Closed

County Observed Holidays: Closed

The shelter is located at 527 Hampton Street in McDonough. We are located south of Atlanta off I-75. Take exit 218 and head east on 20/81 toward McDonough. Our address is 527 Hwy 20/81 East.

For all other information regarding ordinances, county codes, and other functions of Henry County Animal Care and Control please visit

UPDATE: A number of good people have offered to provide donations to sponsor KoKo if she's given a good foster home or placement at a never-Kill shelter. If you're with a rescue group and can help her, contact me and I'll send donations your way.

An Open Letter To My Cats...

To My Cats:

Every day I make sure you get wholesome food to eat, a clean place to “do your business,” fresh water, open windows to watch the birdies from, sunny places to sleep and more beds than any human in this house has.

I ask for little in return; that you get along with each other, you find fulfillment and happiness here, that you show me a moment or two of affection from time to time.


What I really don't care for is when you lose control of your mind and decide to use my feet for traction in your attempt to escape each other's wrath.

Really. Do you need to aim for my feet when there's another 2599 sq ft (pardon the pun) of space to freak out in? Can't you just AVOID ME, ME, your dear “Mother,” when your claws are out?


You know I could do something about those claws. I could. But I'm a nice person, so instead of taking your claws, this afternoon while you're passed out asleep, under my desk, I'm going to get an air horn and “accidently” fire it off.


But first, let me put on my shoes.

While Spencer Sleeps...

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...I toss and turn. I'm still in the throes of doing my blasted taxes. I'm in a foul mood. I don't see the sense in wasting days of my life, adding up countless receipts because when it's all said and done, I probably won't owe any taxes and I won't deserve a refund. So why bother?

Last night I did a home visit for DRNA. They posted a message about needing help here in Newtown, so I offered. Along with my home visit, I had to fill out a very comprehensive form, detailing my visit. It made me realize how little we ask of our own adopters. We certainly don't do a home visit and we only ask that they don't declaw the cat and have their other animals up to date on vaccines and wellness exams. That's about it.

After the home visit, which went fine, we stopped at the grocery store to buy cat litter. Who should I run into but the dad and two sons of the family I adopted Donner & Dancer to. In the guy's hands was a stack of canned food-the cheapest, most awful crap you can imagine. It was 20 cans for $7; full of grain and mystery meat products. I almost screamed.

I did my best to be friendly about it and he said he didn't know how to tell it had grain or not and I reminded him that he can't buy grain free in a grocery store-which also pisses me off. Why can't you get good cat food at the grocer? At least you can't get it around here. There wasn't anything I could do. I said I'd send him info and he bought the crap food.

Once home, I sent him a long email with links to cat food resources and a discount code. I could not sleep. I kept thinking about how awful this was and that they said Dancer was still very scared-probably because there are two rambunctious boys in the house. I imagine her cowering in fear and growing into a messed up adult. I want to think the best of these people, but I really f-cked up. I should not have adopted to them, but the deed is done. I can't go get the cats when I don't have a great reason to do so. Now I fear the cats will become fat and unhealthy and I wonder if they will even keep up with Vet visits? Will they even keep them indoor only, as promised?

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I'm sick about this. I know it could be worse. Even two of my best friends, who adopted from me two years ago, feed crappy cat food and the cats are chubby but they are loved so very much. They seem to be content in their home and maybe that is enough?

Foster Cat Journal: The Cat Tree that Hormones Built-Part 2

I let the kittens out of their room to have a break while I built the cat tree. They saw the parts and got all excited! Each kitten had to sniff-test everything before they got bored and ran into the bathroom to rip the towels off the holders ('cause it's FUN).


I read the directions. I only needed ONE tool. How hard is this gonna be to build? Piece of cake! I just needed to find a 7/16" wrench (though I had to look up WHAT a wrench looked like online, first!).


This is not bad at all. I just have to screw THREE legs into the platform that has FIVE holes in it. Okay there's a clue here. Not all the holes look the same. Two do not have threads in the hole, so they must not be for the legs?!

I screwed down the legs, but they didn't fit tight to the base and I was worried I'd strip the screws, so I did the best I could. I know I'm going to use bolts on the opposite end of each cedar post, to connect it to another platform. I'm thinking this will give the cat tree the rigidity it needs. I thought it was weird that the bolts were driven into the bottom of each post, along with a tag, reminding whatever fool was building this thing that yes, THIS is the bolt you need.

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Why isn't the bolt in a NICE PLASTIC BAG? Why is the FOUR HUNDRED MILE LONG BOLT in the end of the post? I use the wrench, not sure which end of it, to get the first of THREE bolts out. I turn it. The post turns, but the bolt does not. The post is ROUGH cedar, so my hands are going to get full of splinters if I hold it tightly.

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I get a wash cloth to protect my hands, grab the post and give the bolt a turn. FINALLY it budges a QUARTER of a TURN. WHAT LUNATIC PUT THE BOLT INTO THIS POST? Was it a sister with PMS, too? I hope a woman would have more sense. This f-ker was in there so TIGHT that the best I could do was do quarter turns, even stopping every so often to MEASURE how much of the damn bolt had come out of the damn post, to see if I was ALMOST DONE. It got to 1 3/4" and I took a break. I read my book for awhile. I played with the kittens. My hands hurt and I was already getting a knot in my neck. I was not going to give up. I would just go slow.

I had no choice in the matter. My only speed was SLOW. I got up and went back and tried again. This time I discovered that being fat is an advantage. I could hold the post with my left hand, press the post against my stomach to keep the bloody thing from turning, then use my right to unscrew the damn bolt.

It worked.

It took an hour to get the three legs put on the cat tree. Just about that time, Sam came home. He must have either remembered I was having PMS or took drugs, because he came into the bedroom, saw what I was doing and offered to help get it finished up. He was nice. Something was wrong. Maybe he knocked off a piece with a Mistress! Of course! That was it! Instead of going to the Store, he shagged a cheap floozy! I'd have to check the fridge and pantry to make sure he really went to the store! I didn't say anything, but I simmered, waiting for further clues.

The rest of the assembly was very easy-of course, because Sam showed up. So no one will believe what a beyatch it was to get those bolts off! My biceps knew better, plus I swore I had a splinter just over my belly button.

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The kittens gathered around to inspect the new cat tree before it was delivered to their very lonely and bored Mama.

Sam moved the cat tree for me while I stood in the bathtub, holding Cupid in my arms, waiting for the next fight to begin. We were both being very careful to use as few words as possible and to just get the job done so we could separate again until the next mating season would draw us back together.

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I placed Cupid on her new cat tree. She gave it a sniff and jumped off it. Great. Another wise expenditure of funds I don't have.

She came right back, jumped up and begin to investigate. I scratched my fingers against the nice, tall sisal post to get her attention. Right away she grabbed it, dug her claws in deep and stretched out her back. It must have felt good to her since there is nothing soft in the bathroom she can scratch.

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She posed pretty for a few photos. At first, not sure what to think about this thing.

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I hoped she would warm up to it and in a few minutes of me petting her, she began to relax and enjoy her new hangout spot.

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It made me forget I was hormonal to see Cupid enjoying herself. Although there's little room for me to sit down with her, at least during the many hours she's alone, she can get up high enough to see out the window and scratch and nap on a number of different platforms.

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I counted my blessings that I got that cat tree built without killing anyone and that Sam and I had an unspoken truce. I would go back to the bedroom and read while the kittens played. Sam would play his guitar in the basement. Cupid would enjoy her cat tree. All of us alone, but somehow still together, under the same roof. Now we just had to wait for all this nonsense to pass and for life to settle back down again.

Update: Groceries WERE purchased. No floozies were had. Cupid enjoys the out-of-bounds, brand new, cat bed that's on the top of the dryer. So far she doesn't hang out on the cat tree unless I'm in the room. Hmpf.

Foster Cat Journal: The Cat Tree that Hormones Built-Part 1

It's not my fault I get PMS. I didn't go online and order a 12-pack of the “Super-Beyatch 2010 Kit.” You know, the one with “extra Rage flavored” tablets?

I get PMS. Some times it's REALLY bad. I think it's PMDD, but since I'm going insane at the time, it's tough to do any research when all I want to do is slit my wrists, cry, get mad about things that only usually annoy me, watch chick flicks, overeat carbs, or do all of those things at the same time.

As a Public Service, I notify Sam a few days ahead to watch out. I do this every single month. Every single month he seems to FORGET to steer clear of me during this malström and gets pissed at me when I start to get pissy.

Yesterday we had to run some errands. Before we even left the house, Sam noticed we'd gotten a big shipment by the front door. I was delighted to see that Cupid's new Cat Tree had arrived! The box was too huge to schlep into the house so I suggested we cut it open and take the parts into the house and leave the box in the garage to take to out to be recycled later. So Sam stepped up and started ripping the box apart. Intent on being helpful, he grabbed at the contents of the box as I had already started to do. I hit some of his fingers and he recoiled back, shouted, then gave me a REALLY nasty look. Well my friends, that was it.

There goes the switch. KAH-CHONG! (Yes, that's the sound it makes. Trust me.) The PMS I had been trying so hard to avoid went from a simmer to a boil. I thought; “If he hadn't been trying so hard to be a Boy Scout (push me out of the way), we could have just gotten this done without the drama!” Now I was mad. He was mad. The tension only got worse as I drove (safely and not insanely) to the Bakery.

In trying to avoid things going more postal, I said that I didn't feel like we were getting along very well and that I thought we should forget doing the other errands and just go back home. Well, that just pissed Sam off even more, but what was I to do? I knew that at any moment I was going to lose control, drive into a tree, screaming all the while; “I TOLD YOU I WAS GOING TO HAVE PMS. I TOLD YOU. DID YOU LISTEN TO ME, EVER?!!!!SEE? THIS IS WHAT YOU GET FOR NOT PAYING ATTENTION! WHY DIDN'T YOU STAND NEAR ME IN THE BAKERY? DO I SMELL BAD? YOU HATE ME, DON'T YOU!”

So we got home. I took off my coat, trying to be calm. Sam walked in the door, got his car keys and turned around and curtly said; “I'm going to the store.”

You have GOT to be kidding me! We didn't even HAVE to go to the store. So I offer up the shopping list and manage not to rip his head off. All I could do was think what a jerk he was for putting a bigger rift between us while I'm really trying NOT to do or say a thing. It's the only way to prevent Armageddon. 100% avoidance of each other until it passes!

I decided I was going to build the stupid cat tree for Cupid. I told myself I would go slow and if I got upset, that I would stop. I saw the video about how to build the cat tree on Drs. Foster Smith's web site. It looked super easy. I can do this. I do not need help!


What Goes with Puppies? Why Lobster, of Course!

Last night Sam and I did the last leg (pardon the pun) of a puppy transport. I was looking forward to it, until I saw the weather report-snow, sleet, rain, dangerous road conditions throughout the state. Oh boy. I was having one of those “what have I done?!” moments!

The drive began with heavy snow. The transport was an HOUR ahead of time and I was grateful for it still being light out when we left. The roads were slushy and slippery, but once we hit the Interstate, it improved somewhat. The traffic backed up, then opened up, then backed up again. Traffic Reporters call this “rubber banding” I call it annoying.

We got to Danbury a few minutes late. The sky had grown dark. I could barely see into the two stuffed crates. Where there really animals in there? Oh yes...looked like four black dogs, two per crate. They whined softly as we moved them from one car to our own. I placed one carrier next to me in the back seat, so I could hold the puppies as Sam drove.

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There were only two problems: 1) I could NOT open the damn crate, 2) there was a BIG NOTE saying NOT to take the puppies out of the crate unless absolutely necessary and that doing so could risk their health and that did YOU WANT TO BE LIABLE FOR THE DOGS DYING because you are carrying God knows what disease on your coat, shirt, person and it could spread to the puppies???!

So all I could do is stick my fingers in the cage when they really got loud so they could nibble on my “contaminated” fingers. I couldn't even SEE the dogs. I tried to get a few photos, which was the only way I saw them at all.

The next hour was spent trying to “gently” (passive-aggressively) remind (nag) Sam to drive carefully (not get us killed) because the temps were hovering around 34-35°F and he was driving too fast and I was feeling very anxious (sick to my stomach and, well, anxious).

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We dropped off the puppies with Liz, the lady from the rescue group that was taking them. Since our drop off location was The Chowder Pot IV (that would be the Roman numeral “4”, though “intra venus” would have been more appropriate description-which we discovered later)

The Chowder Pot IV or CPIV, is an old by-the-highway sort of pit stop restaurant that's been around “forever.” It's next to a highway overpass and flanked by darkened buildings that sell light fixtures during the day. The place is in a black hole, to be honest, but what the heck. It was 7pm, both of us were hungry and needed a break from the white-knuckle drive. It wasn't snowing, just raining, so we thought we could take the time to eat. Cue ominous music here...

The interior is like so many I've seen before-recreating a New England-y, Yankee, Olde-y, Ship Interior-y, dimly-lit-to-hid-the-tattered-appearance style. With heavily varnished wooden tables and wooden planks, mounted fish and neon signs to remind us to enjoy a cappuccino or an espresso! This place was on the Travel Channel, I think or Food Network, so I thought it would be okay.

Maybe I'm old and my mind has faded or maybe someone paid off the Host of the TV show or...I dunno but...I ordered some clam chowder. A classic. It was a cold night. Perfect for some GOOD, yummy, chowder. Sam ordered some, too.


Quickly served and still hot, the chowder was VERY thick, almost too thick, yes, there is such a thing as too thick chowder. I tasted a big chunk of potato, then another, then another. There was a weird aftertaste. Was it shot of wine, which is commonly used in clam chowder? Was it bacon? The dreaded and all-hated celery? Nope. Drain cleaner? Dunno? Something was not right. Where were the CLAMS? Oh, there was one, two, ...nope..that was it. Two tiny clams in the non-clam-tasting, borax flavored chowder. Yecch.

This would be a good time to eat a bit of bread to kill the taste in my mouth.

This is the bread. I called it “Spooge Bread.” YES, it was SHINEY and WET. Why? I do not know. I touched it. It was slimey. Sam touched it and bravely licked his finger. He said it was sweet. So maybe there was a sugar (yecch) glaze on the bread? Sam sawed and I do mean SAWED off a small piece. As he tried to cut into the bread, the entire lump was flattened. It was so tough he could barely get a chunk off it. I watched him as he took one for the Team and had a bite. He said it was “Okay, but weirdly sweet and kind of gross.”

He handed me a small piece which I took out of desperation. It was just as Sam described and no, it did not get the weird soup flavor out of my mouth.

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I had some salad that was drowned in Balsamic vinegar. It was fine. It had a lone slice of cucumber, which I cherished.

Next up...LOBSTER!

I didn't get my Lobster-fix last year as we did not to go Maine or go anywhere to eat Lobster locally, so I thought, “why not?” Ha ha ha ha! Why am I an idiot?

First, I should have ordered it steamed, but I'm a carb-fiend so I got it stuffed. It arrived looking very nice. It even came with lemon wedges on the side and drawn butter and I got to wear a bib and use tools to crack apart the exoskeleton. There were green flakes of something all over the dish, lobster, stuffing. Maybe it was just grass, but obviously the person got a C- on the garnish portion of their cooking school finals.


I nibbled at the stuffing. It was very dry, but okay. There were some recognizable chunks of shrimp in it. Then I got to work on the lobster. It wasn't cooked very well. Funny it should be that way since they are KNOWN for their lobsters and to serve it with basically soupy, raw claws seems pretty unlikely to me, but yet, there it was. Yes, I blame the baking. That may have been the reason. My first bite did not take me to that blissful taste bud nirvana. Instead it was OK, maybe a bit mooshie, so I picked at the stuffing, hoping it would kill the ever-present Chowder fumes, if nothing else.

I did my best to enjoy the dinner (stuff my face), but between the weird flavor battle going on in my mouth and the fear that we might have to drive home on icy roads, I figured I'd better just finish up quick so we could get the heck out of there.

The drive home went all right (I only nagged Sam to slow down about four times). Sam declared he had “dibs” on the bathroom when we got home (got the “trots”). I felt bloated (nothing new), and was determined to brush my teeth the second we got into the house. That bad taste was driving me crazy.

We each went to our respective bathrooms. I brushed and brushed, flossed and gargled. Nothing would get that taste out of my mouth. Sam stayed in the bathroom with the fart fan raging. I didn't dare go any where near him.

Sam recovered well, but I did not. I ate two, then two more tiny slices of bread to absorb the funk that died in my mouth. Did not work! What in the blazes did they put in that damn Chowder? I was considering taking a mouthful of clumping cat litter to see if it would suck out the funk!

I knew the only solution was to either go to sleep and hope that it would go away after the morning tooth-brushing or cut my tongue out, which would be good to do, initially, but bad to do because I would never taste fudge brownie or garlic (not at the same time), again.

I decided to watch CNN (again!!!) to see if there were any updates on the situation in Haiti and to try to get my mind off the evil taste situation going on in my mouth. Sam and I both stared dreamily at the TV until 1:30AM. I grew tired of breathing in my own fumes. Sam's stomach had stopped gurgling, so we went to sleep.

So ends yet another neurotic day in the life of your black stretchy pants laden Hostess. And yes, the taste DID go away this morning. I think. Wait...hmmm...

P.S. I'm taking FIVE of the foster cats to the Vet in the MORNING! Insert obligatory curse word here:________________ More on that tomorrow!


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