A message to Oscar's adoring public:
I just wanted to let all of you that Oscar will be a guest of honor in our beautiful land of Me'ow. He will be warmly welcomed by my Longlegs, The Empress, and will enjoy the famous Mulberry Blossom Festival. I am sure that even though you naturally will miss him very much, you wish him a pleasant time until he returns home.
We need to talk about something concerning the Longlegs. I have noticed over my many lives so far that Longlegs place a value on what they call money. Now, this could be in the form of little bits of metal or even pieces of paper. Yes, I know you don't understand but if you have a little patience I'll explain.
Longlegs don't go out and catch their food. Maybe it's because they only have two legs I don't know, but they don't have the skills we have. Maybe you can see now why we are the Superiors and not them? But, they have money, or some of them do at least. With this money, or cash as they also call it, they go to the shops in the High Street and in exchange for this money they receive goods. They keep getting silly things like covers for their paws, sometimes in bright colours which any prey out there would see. Sometimes they get covers for their bodies too because they don't have much fur, ha ha. The female ones go for things that still show legs while the males go for things that cover all their leg. Except when the sun is shining when they all seem to show a lot of leg. But yet again I digress. The main thing they get is food. Now I don't begrudge them this as they often get food for us too which can be very tasty.
What makes me cross though is that sometimes you see the Longlegs begging in the street instead of going and using their money to buy things. They ask other Longlegs for their money and use that instead. I wonder why? I know of one who begs for money all light time and gets lots and then comes the next light time to do it all again.
Obviously none of the Longlegs realise that you shouldn't beg but you can go out and get for yourself. Yes OK. It might take a lot of mice to feed a Longlegs but there are bigger animals out there too. I mean cows aren't much use are they? But there's a better skill they could learn and that's The Stare. If I sit in the doorway of the butchers shop and just stare inside it doesn't seem long before either the butcher or one of his customers ( a Longlegs word for one who takes money to them) brings me some ham. It works in other places too. Now I've seen dogs trying this but they sit and whine until the butcher throws a bone to them. Whining is not good and Superiors don't do that, and of course bones aren't much good to us either so I'm happy to leave those to the dogs.
Superiors like me don't need money, don't need to whine and certainly don't beg. So, maybe it's time to open a Superior's Academy to teach these things to the less well blessed as us. Longlegs as usual will have trouble understanding but maybe we can find a way to do it with pictures. We should really share our skills and knowledge with the less fortunate.
Oscar has asked me to announce that he is going on a prolonged holiday following an invitation from his friend Wise Cat to visit Me'ow. He hopes all his friends keep well in his absence and expresses a wish to meet you all again sometime.
It rained continuously all the last light. I was bored. I seemed to spend my time moving from one sleeping place to another and I know it's possible I was grouchy. Not likely but just possible. I did go and sit on the front step outside the big clearway a couple of times to try and will the rain to stop but that didn't seem to work, and I couldn't do it too often as the longlegs shut the clearway and sometimes forget I'm out there. I only managed because the clearway had to be opened to guests and I was able to get back in. It's clear they were having a party and I think it may have been for my 'The Her'. I could hear the constant clink of their bowls hitting each other as the Longlegs say “Cheers” and they had plenty of food. On this occasion I stayed away though the smells did tempt me because there were too many of their big paws around to tread on me. I was also wary as my 'The Him' didn't seem too thrilled when one female Longlegs extended her hand towards me and I showed her what Finger foodreally means. Well, how am I to know that fingers coming towards me don't always mean food. I'm pretty sure she'll heal alright though.
So, I was bored. Towards the end of the light the guests left and I wandered through to the eating place where my dishes are kept. Lo and behold they were full of treats. Salmon, tuna and even shrimp. Someone had even dropped a sandwich full of ham and there was good lick-able butter on the bread. I had a feast, but it is possible I may have rushed things a bit instead of savouring it because I was a little sick. I would probably have been OK had I not done it in front of my 'The Him' on his carpet and over his paw coverings. He didn't seem to be willing to offer me comfort and there was no, “Oh poor Oscar”, just an almighty roar of “What the!!!”. He stomped off out of the room muttering to himself as my 'The Her' came through to clean the carpet. “You never learn do you Oscar?” she said but did give me a quick hug.
My 'The Him' returned with fresh covers on his paws and took his seat, The muttering had stopped. He patted the place beside him and I jumped up knowing he'd forgiven me. Of course he really had no choice in that since he works to look after me. I walked across his knees and back. As I started the journey again he stopped me and gave me a hug. “Settle down now Oscar, I want to read the paper”.
I completed the journey and on the return I settled on his knee to rest. He picked up the paper and started to read. After a few moments he said “Just listen to this Julia my Dear” and read something out. She looked up at him and nodded as he spoke but continued with her knitting. He was quiet again and I tried to sleep.
There was no chance of that as he said “and the Government want to..” before he himself was interrupted.”David Dear, do be quiet, I'll read the paper myself later, don't spoil it”. I turned around and started to settle again and heard “Do stop wriggling Oscar, I think I'll make a cup of tea Dear, would you like one?” as he stood up pushing me to the floor.
I gathered myself and walked over to settle with my 'The Her' instead but she wouldn't let me up on her knee because of her knitting. They never seem to realise their priorities. I settled on the arm of her seat but that wasn't going to work as her in and out elbow kept catching my ear. I gave it up as a bad job and left. I knew they'd miss me but it was their own fault. They'd had their chance. I settled on my 'The Hers' sleeping place and finished my nap.
Words have power. Some words have more power than others and the one I want to talk about today is the most powerful of all. LOVE. This single word can raise emotions so strong....well, strong enough to start wars if what I heard from the Longlegs is true. Though in truth, I wonder whether they share the same meaning that we do.
We love our partners. I know that it may not seem that way sometimes when some of us take advantage of and she-cat we can find who's receptive. But that's the nature of Toms. I would always be there for my partner and don't believe in tom-catting around.
We love our kittens. They carry our genes through the generations and our memories through life. We protect them and guide them and teach them. Hopefully we teach them the right way of things.
We love our friends. They are there when we have hard times and they are there for us when it counts. Yes, even Ginger who doesn't carry a single thought of worth between his ears but is a faithful companion....mostly.
I'm going to dare to say it now, even though many may think it wrong. We can love our Longlegs too. Strange creatures as they are they can be endearing. You don't have to explain to me that they are not of our species or that their sole purpose in life is to take care of us. Nor that they may not share our concept of love, and oft times it seems they do not as they seem to cause pain to each other to judge by the reactions of my 'The Him' when one of the she's of the species comes at him with a needle. And I know that many of the hims tom-cat around with the hers as well. Maybe they shouldn't be judged by our high morals.
What we should do is admit when we feel that sense of belonging that tells us we feel love for our Longlegs. I confess to that feeling myself. Yes, I know. I often complain when my meals are late but as a Superior I should do that in order to train them. But when I get my 'The Him' off his sleeping place some early lights it's because I want his company and the comfort of a stroke. The fact that he complies, even though he moans, shows me that it's possible he loves me in his own way, which I agree in my case is natural, but I believe he wishes to please me more than just a servant would.
When I go to sleep alongside my 'The Her', or she who cannot be woken, I get a real sense of pleasure. And when she awakes the first action she often performs is to reach out to stroke my head and say “Good morning Oscar” with real devotion.
The opposite side of this coin, to paraphrase a Longlegs, is the feeling one gets when told “I don't love you.” Now I can't speak from experience here as it's obvious everyone should and does love me, but not dogs, but I'm told of the power to diminish one that those words hold. They can crush. And yet they are just words. Which brings me neatly back to my first statement. Words have power. It is my suggestion that you think before you use them, and use them well. Use them for good. Use them to reinforce your affection and don't be shy. Use them to show you love all members of your species no matter where from, Persia, Egypt and even the Isle of Man. Use them to show your Longlegs appreciation.Wise Cat
An ancient haiku:
grey softness, green eyes,
paws tapping oh so gently
where are your sharp claws?Julia
love makes the heart lighter and the face more gentle, nastiness leadens the heart and sours the face.Keith Rommel
Couldn't have said it better myself Julia...
First light was bright light, was warm light, coming as it did through the glass clearways where I lay dozing on the sill. It was really pleasant on my skin. I was reluctant to open my eyes but a good Superior always knows duty comes first, and I'm not just a good Superior, I'm the best.
So, rousing myself with difficulty I jumped to the floor and wandered through to my 'The Him's' room where I could see him sleeping peacefully knowing I had been on watch protecting him through the dark time.
The warmth had worked it's way to my joints which I admit are less flexible now than they used to be. But, they weren't so bad that I couldn't leap from a short distance onto his sleeping place. I had decided not to give in to the temptation to land on his stomach as on one recent occasion he'd sat up so quickly I'd been forced to hold tightly to his chest which had brought forth a screech that had almost deafened me. Superior ears suffer most you see. Anyway, I crept along the form of his body until I reached the head. There he lay actually blowing small bubbles as he breathed and making the odd little grunt. I moved closer to sniff him and my whiskers must have tickled his nose as he let out a mighty sneeze. It didn't wake him and I could see him settling back down. I moved in again more carefully and stuck my cold nose on his, then climbing up onto his body quickly I lay with my paws on his eyelids, nose to nose and with my body running down over his chin onto his chest.
The breathing, grunting and bubble blowing came to an end. I could feel his eyes trying to open under my paws, and failing miserably, then his mouth open in a huge gasp as he tried to breathe in a huge mouthful of air, getting instead my fur. He began to rock and I knew the initial fun was over. I removed my paws and slid off the rocking face onto his pillow. The eyes flew open and the mouth pulled in some air. His head turned slowly until we were almost eye to eye.
Oh Oscar” he said “subtlety is not thy middle name is it.” So saying he swung his legs off the sleeping place, put on his second paws which were made to look like bear's feet and looked silly, and moved to see to my dishes. I could hear him grumbling to himself but I don't understand why, after all I performed my part of the job in waking him didn't I?
After eating I went through to where he was making himself a drink and rubbed myself around his ankles in thanks. He found time to grumble about that too so when he picked up his drink and started off towards his sleeping room again I redirected him to the room he calls the lounge.
“What now Oscar” he asked following me. I sat on the floor by his seat and told him to sit which he did. I jumped onto his knee carefully avoiding his cup which I knew was fill of hot drink. He put it down and heaved a mighty sigh. As he started stroking me I knew he understood. My Longlegs are quite clever in their own way. I stretched, settled and dozed for a few minutes. As I awoke the stroking had ceased and he was asleep again with a now cooling drink on the table. I jumped down from his knee and he woke up. I just sat and stared at him.
He stopped long enough to throw the drink down his throat then with a stretch stood up. I led the way again to the large clearway which he opened so I could venture outside. He went off no doubt to cover his body in water, ugh! And I lay down in the warmth on the welcome mat in case anyone from outside got any bright ideas about disturbing me.
After some time had passed the clearway opened wider and my 'The Her' came out with my 'The Him' in tow. She stepped over me and the warmth from the sky disappeared. Sometimes there's no consideration. She leaned down to stroke my head and said “Hello Oscar-puss, I nearly trod on you then. It's not the best place to lie down.” I disagree, but wasn't going to say so while my head was being scratched like that. She stopped and moved back allowing 'The Him' to step out after her.
“Just off out for a while Oscar” he said, stating the obvious, “won't be too long.” With a nonchalant flick of my paw at his leg as he passed I let them go and resumed my enjoyment of the warmth. It was clear they knew the house was in safe paws with me here so I fell asleep again.
Oscar, you are a really cool superior.
An ancient haiku:
know that the sun shines, gives warmth,
since We demand it
I want to protest. I just can't fathom you Longlegs out at all. Knowing I'm a Superior you naturally invite me into your home. That's the first and probably last sensible thing you do. When I'm small you spend all your time trying to get me to come to you ( as though I'm at your command, huh).
Now I'm older you seem to spend all your time telling me to go away. There's just no logic.
For instance, my 'The Him' whom I'm never sure was pleased when I appeared, used to gather me up on his knee and stroke me until I fell asleep. Last dark time I thought we should recreate those days but he seemed startled when I joined him on his sleeping place and licked his lips. I accept he was asleep at the time so the blame may be partly mine, but I think his reaction in telling me to go away was a little uncalled for. A short one-sided conversation with me later seemed to convince him that I had needs and he swung himself out of his covers, put on his feet and a very ugly skin and followed me.
I'm not sure if he was expecting to feed me but he went straight to the room where I have my dishes and turned on the light. Seeing me walk straight past he muttered something I couldn't quite make out, off went the light again and he carried on after me. I reached the lounge and sat on the floor by the long seat. He looked at me puzzled though it was obvious I wanted him to sit. Another short one-sided conversation ensued and with another mumbled grumble he sat. That was all I needed. I jumped up beside him and walked across his knees pausing in the middle of the walk. No reaction so I got off, turned and started again. Finally the penny dropped and as I paused on his knee he hugged me. This was obviously all he needed to improve his spirits as he told me what a best boy I was. As he ceased the hug I again dismounted , turned and walked over to the other side again. Then I turned again, got up on his knee and accepted another hug and another endearment as is my due.
Again as the hug ended I dismounted and then settled on the seat beside him. This allowed him to start stroking my head and back, though I noticed his eyes started to glaze over quite soon. Because I am such a magnanimous Superior I did not bring his attention back with my usual nip, I decided instead to punish him for his lack of respect by leaving him. So, I upped and left him there and went to settle on the sleeping place of my 'The Her' so I could keep her warm and protected. He could stay and wake up in the light time which he did with a start and a shiver as it's none too warm.
But you can see can you not, where my puzzlement comes from? Why should he no longer want me to come to his knee after spending so much time trying to entice me there when I was younger? Surely it is much more an honour now then then when I was a callow youth. So, I wish to register my protest that you Longlegs just can't seem to make up your minds and that you are not at all consistent. Can you tell me why?
Answers on a postcard please.
Ilil Arbel (A Longlegs)
Oscar, Oscar... my dearest Superior, you say "Last dark time I thought we should recreate those days but he seemed startled when I joined him on his sleeping place and licked his lips." Don't you know that past days cannot be recreated? EVER? The past is the past... By now, you should behave as if your Longlegs is the kitten and you are the wise Senior Superior... Remember, the Longlegs NEVER woke you up to stroke you when you were a kitten. They let you rest. You should not wake them up, either!
(email@example.com) 11/04/2011 08:18:00
An ancient saying: When winter comes and the snowflakes fill the dark time with glowing, fluffy whiteness, Longlegs beg their Superiors to come and snuggle under the blankets and warm them up…
Design. Probably a word you've seen and not given much thought to, but a word that has vast importance in our lives. Let me explain.
SUPERIORS. Four legs, an agile body that can twist when in the air and ensure landing on all fours. We are light, we are sleek. We have a beautiful fur covering to ensure we're not cold and it's waterproof too though I'd prefer not to mention water (ugh) if I can. We have wonderful whiskers with which we can gauge whether we can get through a space, though inevitably we can.
DOGS. Four legs, a reasonable agile body though obviously not as good as a Superiors. Can land on all four feet from the air sometimes but not always. They're heavy, they're not very sleek except for a few, Greyhounds, Whippets, Borzois etc. They have a good fur covering though it's not as soft as mine, I mean as soft as a Superiors. They have whiskers but rarely the intelligence not to get stuck in tight places.
HORSES. Four legs. Fleet of foot but not very agile. A body that doesn't twist in the air to help them land on all fours. No whiskers to help them and capable of getting stuck anywhere.
COWS. Four legs. That's about it as far as I can see. ( Apart from providing milk).
LONGLEGS. Well, where do I start? Obviously the Goddess was having an off day which is why she ended up putting them in our care to serve and look after us. They have only two legs. They are at least upright but couldn't beat a Superior in race, except maybe the cow Oh, and they could beat a tortoise for sure. Can't very often land on two feet from the air without falling straight over. Some are sleek some are not. They have no fur, just a very light down on their body and a clump on their head. Some of the males grow whiskers but they're not very useful, mind you some of the women grow them too. They have no concept of whether they can get through a tight space and very often end up with their heads stuck.
I tell you all this so you can see that all the animals are of a better design than the Longlegs and that of the animals only one deserves to be called Superior. I believe that once we were referred to as Cats but that when all other animals realised who far advanced we are they called us Superior to them and the name stuck. See, a lesson from me brings in so much, I can even teach history at the same time.
An ancient haiku:
full moon glows whitely;
it laughs at the sad Longlegs
who does not purr back
Proof of flexibility