Thursday, December 25, 2008

In Which: the librarian wastes a lot of time making silly movies.

The librarian challenges her siblings to recognize their inner John Travolta:

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Sunday, December 21, 2008

In Which: Fatty Kitty writes a Poem.

Ode to She Who Understands Cats
on the Occasion of Her 256th (in Cat years) Birthday,
with Apologies to Pablo Neruda.
The only child
the first miracle of six
who jumped
over barricades
like horses
and twirled,
amid grubby siblings,
of ballet shoes
no less grubby
with effort and

The faint light on her
upturned eyes
of stars
show through
of a horse chestnut tree
with many faces
while Cats
her ankles.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

In Which: I become a Useful Item.

I am suddenly in demand. It appears that when the weather is cold enough, I am requested - no, I am begged - to come and sleep next to the librarian. Apparently it's not enough anymore to have a rice bag at the feet, and a hot water bottle in the Arctic regions (what she'd call her rear, but I Know Better. It's positively glacial.)

At any rate, the temperature hovers just below zero, this 1919 house is so charming and inefficient that it hovers ten degrees below the thermostat, and pretty little frost climbs up the charming wood-framed storm windows. And we wish the current Daily Inter-Lake editor's columns were included in the ground-up newspaper that is currently the sole insulation between the walls. Then there would be a lot more hot air in here.

The librarian took this picture to show how the snow slides off our roof faster than any other house on the block - because we have so much more heat escaping is the complaint.

I'm doing my part. Of course, if I were fed more, I could become fatter and therefore a better source of heat. I think a little cream might even be called for. I think I'll pour on a little Fatty Kitty Charm. Excuse me. I must wander into the kitchen and state my case.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

In Which: I meet a Formidable Cat

    AbbietheKitty asked about my recent trip across Minnesota, North Dakota, and Montana.  Thank you very much for your concern, AbbietheKitty.  The trip was fine.  I am not happy about travel, but one does what one must.  
    My librarian drove safely, if not quietly.  She sang along with the radio and CDs, played the harmonica occasionally, and cackled while listening to David Sedaris read "Naked."  I think I put up with it quite well.  She didn't need to stuff the motel pillows into the holes that led under that bed; I wasn't going to stay there.
     However, in Missoula, we stayed at the home of Ben and Amanda.  They look like this:
They appear to be normal, I suppose.  But their Cat, well...
He is Formidable.  
     For one, he is large, very large, larger than I, and nothing Fatty about him.  He is also very expressive.  You might even say articulate.  And what he was articulating sounded distinctly threatening. I think I'm glad I didn't meet him nose to nose, even if he does wear Soft claws.  
     But, what can one do when one's home is invaded by a Stranger?  I empathize with Hendrix.  We sniffed at each other with a door panel between us, but that's all we were allowed to do.  Who knows what great partnerships have been thwarted by over-protective companions, eh, AbbietheKitty?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

In Which: I find a Role Model

My new favorite comic strip: Get Fuzzy

Here's the strip from Nov. 4, 2008:

You can find more of the Supreme Cat Here.

Friday, October 31, 2008

In Which: I am supplanted by squash

  Really.  You'd think that squash would be low on the hip list, but apparently not in this household.  The librarian and her siblings spent all afternoon on two pumpkins.
In the other paw,  I'm glad I wasn't attacked with special orange and purple tools.  At least they had the good taste to put a Cat on one of the vegetables.
Other excitement around here?  Well, not much.  I do live with a librarian after all.  Bruce gave Maggie 18 red roses.  Then they sat by the roses and held hands for awhile.  That was exciting.
Frankly, anything to do with excitement has been overshadowed by this pile of paper:
This is what the librarian has to read for the rest of the quarter.  And it's not all of it, either.  Some were just too long to print out.  This pile is $45 worth at the copy shop.  I'm somewhat disappointed that I won't be treated to the librarian swearing at Bruce's "legacy" computer and printer anymore.  I enjoyed it immensely.  

Monday, October 6, 2008

In Which: I blame it on the librarian....

I always blame her.  That's what she's there for.  So, it is her fault that I haven't posted for a month.  She hogs the laptop because she's doing homework - at least that's what she says.  She went away for a weekend to be at school - at least that's what she said.  She says this picture is proof, and that it's her at the College Inn in Seattle, homeworking. 

Well, it certainly doesn't look very trysty.  And I did have a good time with Nancy Drew, She who Understands Cats.  So I suppose I'll forgive  her for the weekend away, but not for hogging the computer.  I'm only on it now because she finished a paper.  Harumph.  Well, to bed.  I hate to say it, but as soon as the librarian goes to bed, I simply must jump up there with her.  I can't resist waving my tail over her nose.  It's one of my bad habits features. Like this: purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr....

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

In Which: Art Museums get checked out of the library

My librarian keeps track of what's going on at the Minneapolis and Hennepin County libraries.  For one thing, they need a new director.  So if you're a high-powered librarian executive type, look here. 

For another thing, the libraries just ended a year-long partnership with businesses and museums in the metropolitan area, in which library patrons were able to "check out" a membership to a museum for a week, and thus enjoy some of the cultural icons of the area.  And my librarian knows a good (free) deal when she sees one. (UPDATE: the year-long agreement has been extended for another year!)

So it is that she's been to the Walker Art Center and the Weisman Art Museum in the last two weeks.  Of course, no pictures are allowed inside, but the outsides are fascinating as well.

Behold the Walker Art Center:

And behold its sculpture garden (very famous cherry-on-a-spoon fountain)

And the ramp for the pedestrian bridge that goes across eight lanes to Loring Park:

and Loring Park itself: 
The librarian's Mom (AKA Maggie; she has kitty treats) told her to walk across the pedestrian bridge.  Never having learned to drive, Maggie is somewhat of a pedestrian activist (she once pounded on the hood of a car that was nosing her along a crosswalk.)  I think I shall take after her and become a kitty activist.  Hmmm, I need to think of a slogan....
But, as usual, I digress.  The Walker was predictable, in that the art was so avant garde and abstract that it became boring.  Nothing connected to anything else.  Rows of brushed aluminum cubes.  The iconic 70's artist who had naked women roll in a trough of paint and then roll on a canvas.  Sigh.  The Walker prides itself on being cutting edge, but the librarian found it quite dull for the most part.  Except for the sculpture garden, and this wonderful concept: Artist Designed Mini Golf.  Now there's a concept!
Today, the librarian (and Lisa Dean) went to another museum.  This one was architecturally designed by Gehry, of Experience Music Project in Seattle (the librarian thinks that building looks like a booger.)
As for the Weisman: talk about your brushed aluminum!  It's actually stainless steel.
The Weisman is on the campus of the University of Minnesota, and the librarian has personal experience that the bus stop on that bridge above is the coldest place in the world on a Minnesota winter's day.
If the Experience Music Project is a booger, than this is a sand castle built by The Mad Welder.  What would Prince Charles say?  Yes, it's visually interesting, in fact, I rather like it just because of that.  I could perch in a window and be right up there with the birds.  A few windowsills with pigeons would assist my fantasy, but we all know about those pigeons.  No Good, No Good!
The librarian's favorite exhibit there was Hindsight is always 20/20, a project by R. Luke DuBois.  She's been talking about it to everyone, so I may as well let her blog a little bit about it, while I go beg Maggie for a treat:

The exhibit was based on an algorithm that took the 66 most-used words from each President's State of the Union Addresses.  Lisa and I enjoyed discussing the differences between the Presidents.  For instance, Washington's most-used word was "gentlemen" and George W. Bush's most-used word was "terror."  We thought Lincoln would have "slavery" in his list but he didn't.  The President before him, James Buchanan, had "slavery" as his most-used word.  Lincoln's most-used word was "emancipation."  
Other things came up: Reagan had more emotional words than other presidents: blessed, needy, victims, honored, love, hearts, etc.  And more recent Presidents - say, after Jimmy Carter - used poorer vocabularies than previously.  Are they becoming stupider?  Or are they just trying to dumb down to the lowest common denominator of their constituents?  (I'll bet they wouldn't use the word, "constituents.")  
At the very least, it was an interesting overview of issues during each President's incumbency.

And there you have it: my librarian's review.  It was hard to pull something even mildly intellectual out of her.  She's all about biking and knitting these days.  I suppose she's trying to get in all the fun she can before she starts school in 18 days, 9 hours, and 43 minutes.  Ha ha!  I'm so glad to be a Cat, with its perquisite schedule: eating; personal grooming; playing with the occasional feather; submitting to caresses, all surrounded cosily by naps.  Cat-naps.'s time for one now.  zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Friday, August 29, 2008

In Which: the librarian gets carried away at the Minnesota State Fair

The Minnesota State Fair, from what I've heard via human media outlets, is an event which is packed with humans getting sunburns, walking walking walking endlessly on crowded streets in search of food on a stick. The librarian made her plans on the internet. She was amazed to find a daily checklist of events from which she could pick and choose, and then command the computer to print her a personal PDF of things she wanted to do at the fair. Such are the things that make her happy and excited...I was hoping for a can of tuna, myself.

So she went, last Monday. She picked this day partly because she could watch the stock dog trials. It's about time that dogs went on trial! All that tailwagging and panting. Harumph! I hope justice was served!

Otherwise, she seemed to spend her time in some strange ways...lots of it centered around food she might eat,

food she wasn't allowed to eat, 
and food she actually did eat (in this case, tater tots with onions, cheese and bacon, on a stick of course!
And she really walked around the fair like this (but she wasn't the only one):

only because she couldn't find out where people were getting the pickle hats.
She has a couple of extras, so if you're dying to have your own Minnesota State Capital hat, or a pair of "fireworks sunglasses," give her a yell, as the sailor says.
And if you think I'm miffed that I didn't get to go, then you don't know your Fatty Kitty.  Crowds and heat are not my thing.  However, that walleye on a stick....

Sunday, August 17, 2008

In Which: I try to ignore an annoying object

In this weather, it's better just to keep quiet and be cool. But no, the librarian must taunt me with a noisy, aromatic irritation. See for yourselves.

I make no apologies for my fitness or lack thereof. I have just found out that, according to this webpage, I am in my 70s in human years.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

In Which: a large tomato is named in my honor.

Well, I could tell something was going on. I heard the librarian and her pals saying "fatty" but it didn't really seem to require my attention. Besides, I was busy.

Finally they came out with it. They appeared to think that a large tomato growing in the garden was a remarkable event.

Of course, they correlated one remarkable event with another remarkable item: Me. So, naturally, they spent quite a bit of time fussing over it.

And, well, they had to commemorate the event in some way. What better way than to anoint the fruit with a splendiforous moniker: Behold, Fatty Tomato!

It weighed in at one pound, ten oz. I gave it my official blessing:

And then it was anointed with olive oil, and...eaten, along with fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, minced onion and garbanzo beans. But not by me. I celebrated with kitty treats. Much better and they were organic, too. Slurrpp!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

In Which: I recover from a hellish experience.

I hope I didn't leave anyone on tenterhooks, but really...I had to take some time to recover before I could possibly post. Behold the instruments of my incarceration:

a harness, and a Cat carrier. I don't care how soft the blankie, it was extremely upsetting to be dropped feet first into an upended box, bars snapped shut, and carried into that noisome car. Besides which, I had to listen to Elmore Leonard's The Hot Kid for three days. And the nights! In smelly (not a good smelly, oh no) rooms with no air circulation. I protested loudly to no avail. Loudly and constantly, if I do say so myself. Yes, it was horrible. And for what? I still don't know.

So here we are, in a strange house. My librarian and I are sharing this (rather large) house with others. I hid in the dank lower level for hours the first day in protest of my enforced move until hunger and the need for pampering and caresses drove me upstairs. I do allow them to pet me.

There obviously have been other Cats here before and these people appear to understand my rudimentary needs. I've been able to maintain my rigorous napping schedule, and there are numerous nooks and crannies in which to snooze. So here I remain. The librarian acts as if nothing happened, even placing the dreaded Cat carrier in my new sitting room as if it were a special furnishing. Ugh! She can't fool this kitty.

Oh, by the way, I went to the vet, and he was impressed with my overall health and good looks. I feel vindicated in some odd way. Yes, I am Fatty Kitty, all 12.9 pounds of me. Yeoooowwwwllll!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

In Which: I am kidnapped...

but it's going to be difficult to do anything about it because the offending party is my librarian. I will record the entire horrifying experience when I get out of this cage. Meoowwwllllllll!

Friday, July 18, 2008

In Which: the librarian snaps and drives

What happens when someone decides to take pictures while driving - literally?

I started taking pictures in Minnesota on my way to Montana. Who can resist a giant Grain Belt bottlecap sign? On the Hennepin Av bridge over the Mississippi:

Typical midwest scene, still in Minnesota:

Minnesota, land of 10,000 lakes. Here's one:

I took a lot of pictures of North Dakota. Most of them looked like this:

Ever wanted to be Home on the Range? It's one of the last towns in ND before you hit MT on I94:

In Montana now, Yellowstone River from a rest area (ok, I'm not actually driving in this picture, but it keeps the westward flow)

Being a librarian, I couldn't resist this:

They'll put a Ron Paul sign anywhere. I especially like this picture because of the Salted Nut Roll reflection in the windshield.

When I come over Ravalli hill and see the Mission Mountains, I am always impressed. I've taken pictures of this view countless times:

Getting closer to Fatty Kitty - driving into Polson from the south and the view of Flathead Lake:

Well. That was rather self-indulgent. But hey, I'm Fatty Kitty's librarian, and apparently now, his student in the school of attitude. Besides, now that I'm home, he's going to take the blog back anyway, and I'll become merely a backdrop for his self-aggrandizing remarks...unless, of course, he's hungry or itchy.

posted by the librarian

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

In Which: the monarch is missing

No pictures of emerging butterflies available. Sigh. When I went to look at the chrysalis the day after I last posted a picture of it, it was missing. I hadn't looked at it all day, so the butterfly could have emerged and flown away. Well, here is a picture of a monarch that I pulled off of Nancy Drew's webshots page:

Posted by the librarian

Monday, July 7, 2008

In Which: Katie is 9 years old

Katie is a special person. Here is a picture for each year of her life:





posted by the librarian