One of the regular readers of this blog (her name rhymes with "Flipparchia") has requested cat photos. If you're opposed to cat blogging, please look below for the more familiar rants. This white guy is Howie. He's about six months old. He's very affectionate and insanely playful. He loves all the other cats. He doesn't understand the meaning of the word "fear." Or the word "no."
This handsome gray fellow is Norman. Norm is easy-going, friendly, and seldom gets into trouble. Norman, too, loves everybody, but he especially loves Mrs. Archaeopteryx. He's happiest lying in her lap, snuggling with her and nipping at her nose. Although he's huge, Norm has a oddly high-pitched voice (maybe it has to do with his "operation.")
This is Clovis. Clovis may well be the smartest cat alive. She knows how to open every closet and cabinet, including the one where the cat treats are stored. Although she has no interest in eating all the treats, she doesn't mind opening up the cabinet so the rest of the herd can have their way with them. Clovis thinks it's fun to open drawers and loudly remove all the contents, especially when people are trying to sleep in the same room. Clovis only gets along well with Norman. She tolerates Howie, and picks on Pearl.
This fuzzball is Pearl. At age seven, Pearl is Senior Cat in our household, but doesn't take the title all that seriously. She doesn't much care for the other cats, but will tolerate Norm and Howie. Like all our cats, Pearl was somebody else's throw-away. She showed up on my porch one Sunday morning while I was in graduate school, I opened the door, and she made herself at home. She didn't have white whiskers until we got the other cats.
Turns out there is a line between being contented pet owners and crazy cat people. That line is the line between three and four cats. If you have a cat, and are thinking about getting another one, that may be okay. If you have three, and have that thought, think again.