dirac

Cats in Charge

67 posts in this topic

She would then run out of the room but creep back later and attack me.

One of the bonds between cats and humans may indeed by a shared ability to hold resentments.

leonid, I like Irina already! Basil would express his annoyance at something I had done by by going to the dog, often (as with Irina) after letting some time go by, and swatting HIM.

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She would then run out of the room but creep back later and attack me.

One of the bonds between cats and humans may indeed by a shared ability to hold resentments.

leonid, I like Irina already! Basil would express his annoyance at something I had done by by going to the dog, often (as with Irina) after leeting some time go by, and swatting HIM.

Oh! Not resentment it was just asserting that she was in charge not me.

Basil sounds like my cat Irina who would also take a scolding out on poor innocent Katya.

I am fond of the cat poems I have known since childhood especially Wordsworth's The Kitten and the Falling Leaves and T.S. Elliot's, Macavity The Mystery Cat even though they come back to me through painful memories of having to struggle to memorise them for a family party piece.

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Sandy, there are the 'next size cats' even if they aren't 'breedable' as such from the smaller domesticated kinds of cats

My comment about breeders not being able to breed significantly larger or smaller cats was just that....BREEDING. Naturally there are animals from the cat family as large as lions and as small as ????. Which makes it even more curious that breeders of domestic cats haven't been able to significantly change overall body size.

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OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :P:thumbsup::huh:

It just struck me........you don't suppose a charactertistic of a balletomane is that s/he loves cats, do you?? (Think Balanchine)

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For some reason, I'd been reading the headline of this thread as "Cats in Charge [of humans]," but today I had a flashback.

When I was about 11, my friend's cat had a litter, and I took one of the kittens home, where our dalmation, Pebbles, instantly assumed the motherly role. Living as we did in the suburbs, our animals were free to enter and leave the house at will. One day when both of our quadrupeds were in the yard, a neighborhood dog started to run aggressively towards the cat. Pebbles ran between the two in an effort to protect the cat (Jungle), who in turn stepped between the stranger and Pebbles, arched her back and hissed ferociously, which was plenty to send the other dog to retreat.

"Don't sweat it, Pebs," she seemed to be saying. "I can take care of this little matter myself."

OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :huh::unsure::huh:

It just struck me........you don't suppose a charactertistic of a balletomane is that s/he loves cats, do you?? (Think Balanchine)

No question. In fact, when I was trying to fix on a birthday date for the dog of my adult life, that influenced the choice of date.

I found Loretta in November, and two different vets estimated her age to be four months old. That would put her birth sometime around July. So, I figured, give her Bastille Day as a birthday.

A friend who was both an animal lover and ballet lover, suggested that my dog, Loretta, was a Leo, then proceeded to point out how many Balanchine ballerinas were also Leos -- Kent, Farrell, Adams, etc., etc. Close observation of Loretta revealed many Leo-like qualities (not least of which was her obsession with cats). So I changed her birthday to July 26, since so many of my close relatives share the 26 date.

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My comment about breeders not being able to breed significantly larger or smaller cats was just that....BREEDING. Naturally there are animals from the cat family as large as lions and as small as ????. Which makes it even more curious that breeders of domestic cats haven't been able to significantly change overall body size.

My guess is that they will eventually do it, and that some of the extreme 'cat mystery' won't hold out against such technologies. I think that a Deep Blue Rose has never been done either, albeit lavender ones, and surely many other horticultural hybrids have been attempted, and animal types that won't yet work; with cloning and other biotechnologies, the sky will eventually probably be the limit. There are interesting connatations of witchcraft with cats, and these do tend to happen with a certain kind of person. I hate to say it, but there are way too many cases of small houses with a hundred cats living in them, and these people are usually called out by the neighbours for filth and nuisance violations. I myself had to put an evil woman out of business along with the ASPCA for keeping about 400 half-starved cats for experiments in small cages on 4 floors of a W. 3rd Street building--as well as staiwells littered with cat corpses on which she was doing 'preservation experiments'. (I had been sent there to look for a summer student job, that's how I encountered this nightmare.) She would not only not feed them properly, she wouldn't neuter them either; easily one of the most negaitve and dark things I've ever encountered. It took 12 years to stop this horror, but that mystique is curious, because a real negativity is produced when it goes that far, although that's probably not limited to cats, I'm sure there are also vile houses full of dogs and any number of other creatures, snakes, whatever. In my experience in New York, though, the houses full ot scores or hundreds of cats has been the kind I've run into, or seen in local news reports.

Cats have marvelous charisma, and most 'cat people' prefer them to all other animals. My favourite animal is the horse, which has a magnetism, majesty, and strong charisma, but not quite a hypnosis the way cats do.

There's a VERY good story by Paul Theroux in one of his London collections about extreme cat lovers, those whose lives really DO become controlled by cats to an unhealthy degree. I'm going to look that up, as it was rigorous and energetic the way Theroux is at his best. Something of a bizarre horror piece, but adds to the literary collection Dirac has asked for. Will look it up now...

Yes, 'The London Embassy'. I couldn't find the name of the cat story, it was quite good, as were several other stories here, one of his best. there's one with a 'prime minister', clearly mrs. Thatcher that is very good as well.

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OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :huh::unsure::huh:

It just struck me........you don't suppose a characteristic of a balletomane is that s/he loves cats, do you?? (Think Balanchine)

This is definitely a point worth thinking about.

Each of us on BT, whether dancers or non-dancers, gives a deeply personal value to the act of looking closely at ballet-trained dancers doing ballet.

When Basil came into our house, I had very little experience of looking seriously at cats being cats. My image of Basil -- then a kitten -- was much influenced by calendar art, greeting cards, the occasional "cute" cat in the movies. I had never actually "seen" or wanted to see the catness of cats.

As Basil grew into young adulthood, however, I became fascinated (enthralled, actually) by the details of the way he used his body: the light, effortless, secure jumps; soft, soundless descents; even his preternatural stillness when in repose on the mantelpiece, staring at activity in the room. These indeed reminded me of ballet dancers.

Some use the gazelle is a metaphor for dancers who leap in high, free arcs. But many of the most interesting things dancers do, I like to think ... cat.

Anyone want to start a new thread: who are the most cat-like ballet dancers? Or something like that.

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It just struck me........you don't suppose a charactertistic of a balletomane is that s/he loves cats, do you?? (Think Balanchine)

I don’t know if a rigorous scientific study has been done on the subject. :unsure: Fonteyn was a Cat Woman and so was Farrell (although Farrell plays for both teams and has a dog these days, I understand). Balanchine loved to related his dancers to felines (and horses).

However when it came to bedtime she was the first up the stairs and lay pressed up against me all night long. Poor Katya had to keep her distance.

My little tabby was also an alpha cat. She tyrannized the dogs and the younger calico cat, eating the latter’s food, hissing at her whenever she got too close, and appropriating for herself any napping spot she seemed to favor. She was also a great one for snuggling. I miss her very much.

There's also Dick Whittington's cat.

A related BBC story, with video of one furry manipulator.

While miaowing might get a cat expelled from the bedroom, Dr McComb said that this pestering purr often convinced beleaguered pet lovers to get up and fill their cat's bowl.

To find out why, her team had to train cat owners to make recordings of their own cats' vocal tactics - recording both their "soliciting purrs" and regular, "non-soliciting" purrs.

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Why does "soliciting" make me think of Grizabella? :unsure:

As far as "playing for both teams," I guess I'm one of those. Dogs are fascinating to observe and to relate with as well.

The contrast between the two species in endlessly interesting.

Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much." And then there's the matter of having to go out for walks 3 or 4 times a day. Possibly dancers, choreographers, ballet masters and even serious ballet-goers don't have the time?

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Possibly dancers, choreographers, ballet masters and even serious ballet-goers don't have the time?

I'm sure that's true, but I was thinking more of the committed ballet audience than the dancers and choreographers (tho their relationships with cats is interesting too). It just struck me earlier today as pausible that whatever it is that we all love to watch in ballet has something in common with whatever it is that we love to watch in cats.

I'll pick a trait to start with: landings. I am endlessly admiring a superb dancer (especially a male dancer) for having made a "just so" landing where it seems the pressure to the floor is no more than an ordinary walking footfall......dare I say it, a cat like landing. :unsure:

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I'll pick a trait to start with: landings. I am endlessly admiring a superb dancer (especially a male dancer) for having made a "just so" landing where it seems the pressure to the floor is no more than an ordinary walking footfall......dare I say it, a cat like landing.

Balanchine used to tell his dancers not to put their heels down, kitty-cat style. Reportedly he taught his cat Mourka to jump, although the photographs I’ve seen of Mourka and Balanchine in action tend to remind me of

. (About four and a half minutes in.)

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Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much." And then there's the matter of having to go out for walks 3 or 4 times a day. Possibly dancers, choreographers, ballet masters and even serious ballet-goers don't have the time?
Not so.

Jerome Robbins was a lover and keeper of dogs. My Loretta's playgroup included a number of ABT dogs. Peter Martins and Darci Kistler were each clients of my neighbor when she had her dog walking business (a pair of Golden Retrievers), and I often spotted Christine Redpath and Kipling Houston (individually) walking past Lincoln Center, she with her Golden, he with his gorgeous, white Malamute.

Facebook members who have checked Ashley Bouder's page may have noticed her very cute beagle.

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Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much." And then there's the matter of having to go out for walks 3 or 4 times a day. Possibly dancers, choreographers, ballet masters and even serious ballet-goers don't have the time?

...true.

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Sorry. I should have put a :unsure: next to my statement ballet people might not "have the time" for dogs. :huh:

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Thank you for that link, cubanmiamiboy, and reviving the thread. Tschen-Fu is so pretty! One of my cats also takes an occasional interest in the television. He likes dancers because they’re jumping around and not long ago he was transfixed by a cooking show where they were preparing clam chowder.

Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much."

I did have such a cat when I was a kid. He was attached only to me. When I was away for more than a day or so he would have nothing to do with anyone else and not come into the house except to eat, which led to a sad accident which pains me to think about to this day. They really are a serious responsibility.

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Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much."

One of my neighbors' cats was stalking me for quite a while, culminating in him planting himself on the garage door overhang which looked directly into my bathroom. It was quite unnerving to wake up and find Crazy Stalker Cat watching me brush my teeth in the morning. :)

Thankfully, he gave up his most stalkery behavior after a few months.

Elvis has lost a step in the last year, so he's had to give up entertaining himself by beating up the other neighborhood animals. I did catch him taking a swipe at Crazy Stalker Cat last week, though, so no doubt that Elvis still wants him to know who's the boss in this corner of the neighborhood.

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Thank you for that link, cubanmiamiboy, and reviving the thread. Tschen-Fu is so pretty!

Thanks dirac...here he is now...trying to keep his eyes open to watch my old Giselle record playing-(it's an LP and he finds the rotating motion of the device very interesting...until he goes crazy and jumps on top of it... :) .)

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Nice to see this thread revived.

I'm recalling the original theme: cats in charge. I recently saw a greeting card which had t the message: "If Cats Could Talk .... They Wouldn't." Few animals that I've observed have a repertoire of behaviors that is so difficult to decipher. I THOUGHT I knew what Basil was communicating, but I was never entirely sure. And then there was the possibility that he wasn't communicating -- or trying to cummunicate -- anything to me at all. Are cats complete and divinely satisfied solipcists? I think, at times, that they are.

On rereading the thread, I want to thank Sandy for mentioning the magnificence of cat's LANDINGS from jumps.

I'll pick a trait to start with: landings. I am endlessly admiring a superb dancer (especially a male dancer) for having made a "just so" landing where it seems the pressure to the floor is no more than an ordinary walking footfall......dare I say it, a cat like landing.
Does anyone know how this sort of thing is done (either by dancers or cats)? Is it an innate gift with dancers? Or, can it be taught, as dirac suggests when she mentions Balanchine's suggestions that you shouldn't put your heel down?

Another thought, after watching a performance of White Cat and Puss in Boots on Saturday. It's about pas de chat. Other than the springiness and elevation, I don't find much that is cat-like about this move. Am I missing something?

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Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much."

One of my neighbors' cats was stalking me for quite a while, culminating in him planting himself on the garage door overhang which looked directly into my bathroom. It was quite unnerving to wake up and find Crazy Stalker Cat watching me brush my teeth in the morning. :huh:

Thankfully, he gave up his most stalkery behavior after a few months.

Elvis has lost a step in the last year, so he's had to give up entertaining himself by beating up the other neighborhood animals. I did catch him taking a swipe at Crazy Stalker Cat last week, though, so no doubt that Elvis still wants him to know who's the boss in this corner of the neighborhood.

My faucet-drinking ex-street cat is also very territorial. He claimed squatter's rights himself but doesn't want anyone else taking advantage, apparently.

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Dogs depend on humans for much more than cats do. I can't imagine anyone ever writing a book called "The Cat Who Loved too Much."

One of my neighbors' cats was stalking me for quite a while, culminating in him planting himself on the garage door overhang which looked directly into my bathroom. It was quite unnerving to wake up and find Crazy Stalker Cat watching me brush my teeth in the morning. :huh:

Thankfully, he gave up his most stalkery behavior after a few months.

Elvis has lost a step in the last year, so he's had to give up entertaining himself by beating up the other neighborhood animals. I did catch him taking a swipe at Crazy Stalker Cat last week, though, so no doubt that Elvis still wants him to know who's the boss in this corner of the neighborhood.

My faucet-drinking ex-street cat is also very territorial. He claimed squatter's rights himself but doesn't want anyone else taking advantage, apparently.

Well...talk about being territorial. Tschen-Fu's favorite spot is the whole length of the curtain that covers my entire bed, hanging from a stick in the ceiling. He takes enormous pleasure at jumping like a maniac in the morning trying to get to the top. Finally he succeeded and placed himself up there...just for a few seconds before the whole thing-(barre and everything)-detached completely and fall on top of my head...himself hanging and screaming too...

Oh...was I upset... :angry2:

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I thought you might like this one, as it also shows a cat who is at least trying to be in charge of when her person wakes up:

-d-

ps: mods, please remove if it is not permitted to post links such as this. :)

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I thought you might like this one, as it also shows a cat who is at least trying to be in charge of when her person wakes up:

-d-

ps: mods, please remove if it is not permitted to post links such as this. :)

As a sometimes light sleeper, I thank God my Katya only chooses two positions to sleep on my bed. One at my feet which she has attacked on occasion when I have moved and secondly between my body and my arm.

I shall not let her see this video as it may stimulate her to seek as much attention during the night as the cat portrayed appears to seek.

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My tomcat (well, ex-tomcat, but he refuses to accept the change in his, uh, condition, continuing to get into fights and chase girls) also sleeps at my feet on occasion, but he won't cuddle and often won't sleep on the bed. But he's always nearby. The other night he did what I'll call a Tschen-Fu and clambered atop the bookcase, spreading out comfortably across the top of the books and knocking several over in the process. In the morning he descended gracefully from case to desk to floor, knocking over more books and sundry items in the process and waking me up two hours early. Balanchine always praised the grace and jumping ability of our feline friends, but he never met Toby. Well, he is a book lover, after a fashion.

Thanks for the clip, diane. We're allowing lots of latitude on this thread. :)

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My "reformed" tomcat also would've made Balanchine reconsider his beliefs about cats. What a clumsy boy. He misses the bathroom countertop when he jumps up to supervise my teeth-brushing, he ran into our glass sliding door, which unfortunately was closed at the time, he rolls off the stairs while doing stair watch duty. But, he is a sweet boy who sleeps next to my head all night. This also means he takes his bath right in my EAR! Ugg! :smilie_mondieu:

We recently adopted a white deaf boy cat. He is the curious one who knocks over things and goes into places he's not supposed to. He also likes to leave a brown surprise in our downstairs sink every morning. Our vet thinks he wasn't properly tought by his mom how to use the litter box. So, guess who gets to be his cat mommy and teach him!

We also have a girl who looks part Maine Coon. This is the only one we had as a kitten, so she considers herself the baby and expects all the rewards and accolades that come with that position.

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