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Stealthy Stare

The French novelist Colette coined a truism when she said, “There are no ordinary cats.” Both of the cats in our household live up to their non-ordinary qualities on a regular basis. However, it is the younger of the two, with her kitten-ness still intact at two years of age (human years, that is), who tends to exhibit precocious whimsy a bit more often than her older feline housemate.

Recently—well, really since the snow stopped flying at the beginning of May—Daisy, the younger cat, has discovered the bird and squirrel activity just outside the windows on the north side of the house.  Out there, a beautiful ash tree and equally verdant blue spruce grow in the yard.  I’ve hung a bird feeder on one of the branches of the ash tree (and protected it with the all-important anti-squirrel cover).  Thus, a never-ending source of avian action ensues as finches, wrens, chickadees, and other assorted species flitter from the safety of the dense spruce to meals at the feeder.  Meanwhile, seeds fall below the feeder keeping the squirrels and morning doves happy.  To complete the scene, a hummingbird feeder hangs on a metal rod just to one side which has been discovered by a family of the broad-tailed colorful birds.

Daisy sits inside at the window enjoying the true-to-life Kitty TV appearing before her.  Her funniest moments come when she crouches down with ears lowered in an attempt to become invisible to the unsuspecting ones outside.  It’s entertaining to watch especially from the outside as she becomes a stealth kitty:


Daisy Watching Kitty TV Before Crouching Down

Daisy Watching Kitty TV Before Crouching Down

Daisy in her Crouch

Daisy in her Crouch


Daisy Fully in Stealth Mode

Daisy Fully in Stealth Mode


And, from inside the house, she’s not nearly as invisible, but still just as cute:

DaisyLookingOut3

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An Appreciative Cat

Ever since I learned about the Cloud Appreciation Society (CAS) a few years ago, I became an instant fan and, as quickly as international post would allow, I became a life-long member.  Not only does the society have a wonderful collection of cloud pictures and videos from its 32,000+ members (not to mention cloud music, art, and poetry), but they (we) also encourage learning about clouds through a mix of solid science and a bit of whimsy.  After all, learning while laughing definitely speeds learning, no matter what the subject—especially, if it is about something as ephemeral as clouds.

Given my enthusiasm for the Society, it’s no big surprise that I have managed to convince a few wise members of my friends and family clan to appreciate clouds with me and join the CAS.  There is at least one very important member of the family, though, who I missed.  And, she made it quite obvious to me today that she, too, has as strong an appreciation for clouds as anyone else.  Meet Olive, the cloud-spotter feline of the household:

2013May08_CloudCat

Just what has attracted her attention, you ask?  It is a picture of one of several thunderstorms which moved over the Boulder, Denver, and Colorado Springs metro areas today.  I took the thunderstorm picture earlier in the day thinking it would be a nice contrast to the winter weather pictures I took last week during our late-season snowfall (Last week was winter, this week is spring; extrapolation predicts summer soon).  While cropping the image on the computer, Olive the cloud-spotter feline spotted it.  She was mesmerized, quite unusual for her capricious personality.  In fact, she was mesmerized to the point where she remained still long enough for this, and a few other, cute cat pictures.  To keep her purring, I promised to remit her lifetime membership fee for the Cloud Appreciation Society as soon as possible.   They already have a dog who is a member, but I think Olive would be the first cat.

To complete the story, here’s the thunderstorm image that so intrigued Olive:

Wide-angle view of approaching thunderstorm; dark clouds in foreground, streaks of rain in background

Approaching thunderstorm

With this storm and the showers that followed it, we received about 0.5 inch (12 mm) of rain today.  Any rain (or snow, for that matter) this spring is a big help for us because we are still trying to get out of long-term drought.

Cool Cat

In the midst of evaluating the seemingly innumerable WordPress themes to discover the “one perfect theme for me,” I realized I needed a post with an embedded image which I could use to test the look of various themes.  Given the plethora of photos in my library, it was fairly easy to find one to use.  But, rather than choosing just any picture, I went for one showing one of my all-time favorite cats—Cleo*, who is now in kitty heaven.  He was one cool cat and is perfect for a test image.

Cleo, the Cool Kitty

*Cleo: Originally thought to be a little female feline when adopted as a tiny, but cute kitten, Cleo was first named Cleopatra because of the dark markings around “her” eyes.  When it was later discovered that she was a he, Cleopatra became Cleo and he lived a long, happy life highlighted by his distinctive name.

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