Cat-Mas Season

Cat-mas season is here. This is a wonderful time of year when the humans decorate the home for us cats in anticipation of the visit from Santa Claws. The tree went up yesterday, and so did I. Made it to the fourth branch within the first five minutes before the Big Owner chased me out of the tree.

So, as I do every year, I waited and watched the humans decorate the Cat-mas tree with all sorts of what the humans call “ornaments.” I call them “cat toys.”

Ornaments are invitations to a cat, bright and shiny spheres just daring a cat to knock them off. Every year the humans hang the ornaments a little higher out of my range, forcing me to elevate my game to knock them off. Humans “ohhh and ahhh” as they decorate the Cat-mas tree. I salivate in anticipation of the night’s activities.

The humans retire to bed, as is custom during Cat-mas season, leaving me to play with my tree. Tonight is a challenge, the ornaments are at an all time high. I crept under the tree and began to scale branches. This is great! A tree in my own home, why don’t they do this year-round? Five, six, seven branches, I climb like a pro. Ten, twelve, I am half way to the top, and there is the first ornament! This is easy as Cat-mas fruitcake.

I make my way down the branch approaching the first ornament. It lightly jiggles as my weight causes the bough to bend. Almost there! One paw away and I feel a shudder. Something is not right, I begin to lose my balance. The room is tilting! No, the room is not tilting, the Cat-mas tree is falling! It seemed like forever as the tree leaned, then pitched, and finally crashed to the floor in a resounding bang of exploding bulbs, ornaments, and broken limbs. I quickly extricated myself from the splintered tree just as the Big Owner game bursting in snapping on the lights. There I was, sitting next to the tree, as innocent a look on my face as any other in the household.

“What happened?” he growled. Not a peep from me, I turned and looked at the tree. “I guess we hung too many ornaments on one side of the tree,” I heard him say later as he hoisted the mangled Cat-mas tree back into place.

“Good answer,” I thought. The Big Owner staggered off to bed, and I retreated to the living room. Maybe I’ll tear down those stockings that were hung by the chimney with care.

It was good day.

From the Cat Diary
Copyright 1999 Mark Mason All Rights Reserved

Cat’s Computer Dictionary

Copyright 2001 Mark Mason
All Rights Reserved

  • Browser
    What I like to be at 3:00 am when I rearrange all your books on your desk. Where’s a kitty supposed to lay down with all that mess?
  • Wallpaper
    My favorite stuff, mostly in the kitchen and bathroom, I use to exercise my claws on.
  • Defrag
    Coughing up hairballs. Hey, it’s just a little maintenance!
  • Hyperlink
    Fake hot dog filled with my favorite pick-me-up: cat-nip.
  • Server
    My human subject. You can’t call them waitress, or waiter, or slave anymore; it’s not politically correct.
  • Shut Down
    Nap time – my favorite 16 hours of the day.
  • Laptop
    Little ol’ me. Certainly cuter, more useful, valuable, and entertaining. and no batteries are required.
  • Default
    Blame. If something gets broken around the house, don’t look at me! It’s probably that human I have to share my house with, or the dog’s fault!
  • Window
    The best place to watch birds, squirrels, and that weird dog next door eat out of the trash can and chase cars.
  • Home Page
    My papers – newspapers, that is, that I used before graduating to the real kitty litter box. I think they were the “Wanted: DOG” ads.

This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Put Cats on the Currency!

The humans’ U.S. Treasury Department is contemplating changing the look of U.S. currency again. Despite all the recent changes, the bills are too easy to forge. As long as they are going to change things, why not put pictures of CATS on the new currency instead of presidents. Everyone knows WE’VE been running things since Day One anyway! The nominations for Cats on Currency are:

  • Cat in the Hat
    We don’t need a reason why,
    Be it girl or just a guy,
    Just a cat within a hat,
    No better reason than just that!
  • Morris
    Still finicky after all these years.
  • Cheshire
    Cat proverb: “Always keep a smile on your face. Makes ’em wonder what you’ve been up to.”
  • Mr. Snookums
    Perhaps the most famous cartoon cat at the turn of Y2Kitty.
  • Mr. Bigglesworth
    Big Owner to Cat: “Oh, Behave!”
    Cat to Big Owner: Zip it!
  • Puss’N Boots
    “One of these days these boots are going to walk all over you …”
  • Salem
    Best comedic timing of any cat – or human – on Television.
  • Felix
    A pioneer. If it weren’t for that funky first name…
  • Sylvester
    … No otha, my brotha …
  • Snagglepuss
    Just barely made my lisp, I mean list. But also the first to: Exit stage left …
  • And my winner of Feline Dollar fame is:

    Now I must decide between Julie Newmar, Eartha Kitt, Lee Merriwether, or Michelle Pfeiffer! Oh No!

This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Cat Sled Races?

From The Cat Diary
excerpts from my cat’s diary.
Copyright 2004, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

I overheard the Big Owner talking about the Alaskan Iditarod Sled Dog Race. For some reason humans gather every year in the American frontier to race across the frozen Alaskan tundra. I don’t get it. Most Americans in the lower 49 don’t, either. The only thing that makes sense is that dogs do all the work. The humans are just along for the ride. The hardest thing humans do is carry a map and wield a pooper-scooper. Dogs have sunk so low on the evolutionary ladder that they are now the designated haulers in a race through an ice-cold territory. It’s a shame dogs let that happen. It’s doubtful that the organizers ever considered cats pulling those sleds, because everyone knows cats are smarter. Then again, the scientific answer might yield some clues.

It takes an average 12 to 16 dogs to pull a 500 pound sled including an overweight and out of shape human for the duration of the race. At the average weight of 100 pounds per sled dog, my estimate is that it would take 14.28 cats to replace the each dog. Assuming they’d run with the full compliment, a musher would need to outfit a minimum of 228 cats at the starting line.

Assuming each cat was given one small can of cat food per day, which is unlikely, but for the sake of argument a given, and the race takes 10 days, that is 2,280 cans of cat food for the span of the race. With each can weighing 5.5 ounces, the total additional weight at the outset of the race would be 784 pounds. If it’s gourmet, the cats could probably handle it. Another bonus is that the load would get lighter as they ate their way to the finish line.

Most cats nap at least 12 hours of the day and do not wish to be disturbed. As all competitors would be faced with the same problem, most racing would be done at night when – as every human knows – cats are most active. The human musher would have to adapt to cat hours. The added night illumination gear including batteries would be a conservative 200 pounds.

Here’s an idea. Have cats lead, with the dogs in back. The dogs’ constant pursuit of the cats could set new race records! Then again the cats would probably go their own way, anyway, and end up at Santa’s house.

This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Copyright 2004, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

Places for Catnaps, Rated

From The Cat Diary
Weekly excerpts from my cat’s diary.
Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

Now I have heard it all. The United Nations is known for its marathon talkfests that can put even the most veteran diplomats to sleep. It is almost a form of anesthesia. Now a former French ambassador has performed a service to his colleagues by writing a guide to catnapping, listing various lounges and sitting areas around the U.N. building and rating them for their catnapping comfort.

If I had the inclination, or the means, I might charge him with stealing my idea. It obviously came from my beastly bestseller, The Cats Places Rated Almanac for Cat Naps. Five stars is best.

  • On the front doorstep. **
    Too dangerous. The Big Owner, not paying attention, can step on your tail – or worse.
  • On the stairs. ****
    Outstanding support for the length of a stretched-out feline. It also provides a ledge from which to hang almost any appendage. For obvious reasons, never do this in the dark.
  • On the bathroom toilet tank. ***
    Only if it is one of the carpeted variety which is, admittedly, a little retro. The style went out with the ’70’s, but some owners never change. If there are vases or boxes of Kleenex on the tank, knock them off. Excellent full body support, head and hind paws hang over. For between-nap exercises, roll some TP off the holder onto the floor. Again.
  • In the bathroom sink. **
    Perfectly formed for a kitty’s body. But can still be wet and disgustingly dirty from the Big Owner’s shaving his face there each morning. Strange things seem to grow there. Best after it has been freshly cleaned with powerful chemicals to cut through the grunge. Also risk of leaky faucet disturbing a beautiful rest.
  • In the clean laundry. ****
    Especially if it is still warm.
  • In the dirty laundry. *
    Never. Unless your cat box is dirty and you need somewhere to ‘go.’
  • On The Big Owner. *****
    … Drooling a puddle onto his chest. Insist he scratch you. Purr loudly so that he does not fall asleep on the job.

This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

Cat Myths

From The Cat Diary
Excerpts from my cat’s diary.
Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

It’s Halloween. Every year people start resurrecting cat myths to put the scare into little kids and older adults alike. We cats have tolerated this proliferation of ‘myth-information’ for many years and we do not like it. I risk ‘letting the cat out of the bag,’ but I must dispel some illusions.

MYTH: Cats eyes shine at night because they are casting out the light they gather during the day.
FACT: Baloney. How can we gather daylight when our eyes are closed sleeping all day?

MYTH: When a cat’s whiskers droop, rain is coming.
FACT: When a cat’s whiskers droop, rain is here. The whiskers are wet.

MYTH: If you want to keep a cat from straying, put butter on its paws.
FACT: I won’t stray because you won’t be here to open the door. You will be in the hospital as a result of your attempt to butter my paws.

MYTH: If a cat sneezes near a bride on her wedding day she will have a happy marriage.
FACT: 4-in-5 marriages end in divorce. Not a lot of sneezing going on, huh? Maybe they ought to rewrite that one and make it ‘coughs hairballs.’

MYTH: Stepping over a cat brings bad luck.
FACT: Actually, worse luck. It exposes your most vulnerable areas just in case you miss and step on us.

MYTH: Cats suck the breath from babies.
FACT: We don’t ‘suck the breath.’ Cats enjoy baby breath as much as humans. If you had a choice between a baby’s breath and the Big Owner’s breath, which would you choose?

MYTH: Cats always land on their feet.
FACT: So explain the bumps on my head.

MYTH: A cat has nine lives.
FACT: Well, okay, that one is true. I happen to have a can of it sitting right in front of me. Now, if I could only get someone to open it for me.

It was a good day.

This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

Cat Medical Dictionary

From The Cat Diary
Excerpts from my cat’s diary.
Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

I think I have a medical career ahead of me. Lately I have been dissecting rodents on my late night cat patrols. Up until now the Big Owner was never impressed with my simply leaving said rodents at his doorstep. Now I fillet the creatures for his convenience hoping he will throw one on the barbeque for the family to enjoy. So far there’s been no luck. Still, I am honing my scalpel skills. Don’t laugh! Cats have practiced medicine long before humans. Many of today’s modern medical terms were based on original terminology from the very first Cat Medical Dictionary.

  • Enema: The black cat next door … He’s not my friend, he’s my enema.
  • Biofeedback: Coughing up two hairballs in one night.
  • Biohazard: Stepping in both aforementioned hairballs.
  • Cat Scan: Do I *really* have to explain that one?
  • Electroshock Therapy: Accidentally walking on the electric stove while it is on.
  • Hemad: Mood of the Big Owner when I drop a hairball on the carpet. In fact, he’s always mad.
  • Histamine: A mean hiss.
  • Mucus: A feline swear word.
  • Perspire: Purring so hard you drool from the mouth.
  • False Positive: Pouring fresh litter over the old to make it appear new.
  • White Cell: The bathroom – Where humans sometimes lock you up.
  • Work-Up: The long minutes preparing to free a hairball.
  • Acute: What I am…Acute Cat.
  • Fuzzy logic: Trying to figure out cat medical terms.

From Cat Diary #3 by Mark Mason. This is part of a great collection of great cat stories, told from the cat’s perspective. For more information please visit the website!

Copyright 2003, Mark Mason, all rights reserved

The Cats’ Bill of Rights

By Mark Mason
Cat Diary

Only the wonderful mind of Chance could have dreamed this one up… and given it to the Big Owner!

  • Humans shall make no law respecting an establishment of boundaries or prohibiting the free exercise therein, or abridging the freedom of access, or the right to peaceful assembly.In other words: The cat is entitled to go outside anytime s/he wants.
  • A well-carried provisional chamber, being necessary to the fulfillment of a feline’s whims, shall not be infringed.In other words: The cat is entitled to EAT anytime s/he wants.
  • The right of the feline to be secure in their domain, and effects, against unreasonable discomposure, shall not be violated.In other words: The cat is entitled to SLEEP anytime s/he wants.
  • Humans shall issue no warrants or decrees or edicts as prescribed to the demarcation of possessions or property which are in direct conflict with right of life, liberty, and the pursuit of feline affirmation.In other words: The cat is entitled to sleep ANYWHERE s/he wants.
  • The feline shall be immune to all criminal accusations, indictments, and complaints. The accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and impartial dismissal of any and all charges provided said feline’s compulsory right to obtain any or all witnesses, including character witnesses, are obtained in his favor.In other words: Cats can do anything they want as long as they’re cute.
  • Neither serfdom, vassalage, or involuntary servitude will be tolerated, except by said cats in proprietorship of their humans.In other words: What I say goes. (And I can sleep on your face…)
  • No Canis familiaris shall, in time of peace or at any other time, be quartered in any dwelling without the consent of the potentate, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by sovereign.In other words: No dogs in the house without my permission.
  • The right of the feline to be protected against unreasonable search and seizures shall not be breached or infringed upon at any time or any
    place.In other words: Don’t disturb me when I am sleeping in a drawer.

Now that you are laughing hysterically, you need to get right on over to The Cat Diary for more of the wit and wisdom of Sam, Chance, and that new kid on the block Mars. The Big Owner (Mark Mason) has delighted audiences for years with his stories. Read his site.. buy his books! Great gifts!!