Terror Twins

How the Felines Are Handling the Crisis

The Terror Twins seem to be taking having the humans home all day very much in stride.

At my urging, they are keeping up with their lounging duties.  No object is too lumpy or uncomfortable,

catoncans

There is no piece of furniture that doesn’t need warming,

pikey cat

No cozy space is too dark or too small,

flannelbox

And there’s nothing that can’t be improved with the addition of some cat hair.

Lounging, of course, is only part of the program.  They DO help with chores.  Like laundry:

basket cat

And home security.  I’ve arranged regular visits from those windowsill lizards, just to keep the blinds rattling and assure a steady supply of kitty-nose prints on the glass.

kittylizard

There are stuffed mice and pom poms to chase.  And leave in the bed—but only if they’re stiff and soggy with cat spit.

Mostly they get along.  There’s quite a bit of reciprocal ear-washing that goes on.

kitties washing

But then someone washes too hard…

washing kitties 2

And that leads to cranky patty-cake, which leads to thumpy tussling, which leads to high-speed chases with full lights and sirens.  That’s always amusing, especially since they tend to skid a lot.

Sometimes, they and I put our heads together and think up new and interesting mischief, as well as new and more inconvenient places to harf up breakfast or a hairball.

Today we are discussing the fact that this week’s mail brought Ominous Postcards, one addressed to each of them.

vet time

License tags mean vet visits, and vet visits mean shots.  This demands action.

evilkitties

Be afraid.  Be very afraid.

Of course, aside from lounging and hindering and harfage and dreaming up new ways of being obnoxious at the vet, Flannel Cat and Taffy Cat have somewhat limited options, since they are indoors-only.  The human female keeps telling them that they are lucky to live in such a nice house with nice (ha!) people, plenty of food, and lots of soft places to sit.

Outdoor kitties often meet with misfortune.  Poor old Marty, for example.

findmarty

Oh, no!  Marty, it seems, has gone missing.  There are posters up all over the neighborhood.

Let us examine the sign:

Marty

I take it back.  Sounds like Marty knows what’s what and is out there living his best life.

You go, Marty!

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Purrfect Little Minions

People ask me, “Aren’t you finding it difficult to come up with mischief, stuck in the house with the humans?”

No, not really.

I mean, of course, I don’t have vendors and shipments to work with, but I’m definitely keeping my hand in.  I try to arrange some thoughtful surprise for the human female every day.

And I have most able helpers.

Taffy Cat is always in the mood to cause a disturbance.

taffy peeking

And don’t let Flannel Cat’s innocent-seeming ears fool you.

She has a taste for mischief as well…

flannel strikes again

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Mischief Outside for Hilarity Inside

Now both the human female AND the human male are working from home.  They’ve each staked out their territory and the place is covered with laptops and cords and monitors.

You might suspect that, with no computers to fix hands-on and no ordering for classes for the human female to do and no coworkers pestering them in person, I’d have fewer opportunities for mischief, but you’d be wrong.

Wrongety-wrong.

With a side of wrong sauce.

<Loud, clang-clattery noise!>

Eehehehe!  Look at the human female scramble!  She thinks it sounds like the metal blinds in the bedroom being mangled, but that would be weird, wouldn’t it?

Uh, oh, where are the felines?

The felines, dear minions, are in fact in the bedroom.   They are engaged in FLINGING themselves into and through the blinds in a frantic attempt to catch one or both of the green anole lizards whom I have invited to do their head-bobbing display just outside the window.

lizard1

The human female has now raised the blinds in an attempt to keep the Terror Twins from destroying them.

Which just lets the felines see the lizards better.

Great Frigga’s corset!

Look at Taffy Cat jump!  She has quite the vertical leap and has just caromed off the window pane in an attempt to catch lizard number two.

lizard2

Who is peering down from the top of the pane just above the latch.

Eehehehe!  I should have brought popcorn!  The human female has snatched up Taffy Cat and is endeavoring to wrestle her out of the room.  Taffy Cat is protesting this procedure, and just as she is being heaved out the door, Flannel Cat has tagged in and is headed for the windowsill!

Now the female has gone back to evict Flannel Cat and Taffy Cat has streaked back in!

It’s like watching a squirrel trying to fit  two walnuts into its mouth.  Put one in.  Put a second one in and the first pops out.  Shove the first one back in, the second one pops out.

Repeat ad infinitum et ad absurdum…

Awww.  She’s managed to get both cats out of the room and has cruelly shut the door to take away their fun.  The house is all quiet now.

Until tonight…

When I let a june bug in…

The humans have a very tall living room ceiling…

And a tall cat-tree…

And the Terror Twins forget cats can’t actually fly

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Enough Plants! Time for Some Mischief!

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve had enough flowers for one week.  Time for some mischief.

Hmm.  What to do, what to do…  I know, I shall enlist the assistance of my furry minions, the Terror Twins.  I have been training them, you see.

They have become quite adept at sleeping and shedding on the human male’s jackets and tote bags.

cats on coats

As well as the human female’s pillow.

flannel and taffy

Is that what I think it is?

cat-on-stove1

No, it couldn’t possibly be.  The cats simply aren’t allowed to jump up on the stove.

cat-on-stove2

Ehehehehe!

I’m especially proud of Flannel Cat.  She’s got quite the sensitive, artistic nature.  She has recently become quite intrigued by some of the intricate papercut art she’s seen on the internet.  Projects like this:

Flannel’s not there just yet, but she’s made a good start…

flannelshreddy

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A New Yule Tradition–Day Two: To Market, To Market

We slept very well in our cozy little camper last night.  Of course, the fact that I conjured up a very soft and downy featherbed, a two-person bathtub, and a breakfast of crepes and fresh fruit just added to its charm.

So now we sally forth to see what delights this charming town has to offer.  It’s supposed to have a famous open-air market in the square, so that’s where we are headed first.

Sigyn is beside herself!  This farmer breeds an extraordinary sort of reindeer, one with a long and silky coat that he sells as fleeces or which his wife spins into yarn.

llama

They have brought one of the beasts with them and Sigyn is losing no time making friends.  I suspect we will be tarrying here for a while…

Look, Sigyn!  This next stall seems to carry a lot of merchandise that looks like your friend Muffy.

muffystuff1

Pick her out a nice souvenir and I will magically post it back to her. (I’m not trusting anything to Fed Up and Exhausted!)

Ehehehe!  I should have known!

snow globe

We may have been deprived of seeing glass in the museum, but if there are glass paperweights or snowglobes anywhere, you can be sure my beloved will find them!   That gingerbread fellow is almost as tall as you!

Oh, now isn’t that cute?

cat mug

Sigyn says this mug reminds her of the Terror Twins back home.  She wants to know if I miss them.  Sweetie, last night’s dinner was the first I’ve had without cat hair in months.  No, I don’t miss them.  But I do wonder if Taffy is still sleeping on the human female’s head, the way I’ve been teaching her?  (I don’t have to actually be present to annoy the human female!)

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How to Properly Return a Parcel

It’s all about the packages and parcels this week.  It’s always gratifying when the things one has ordered arrive whole and sound in the post, and maddening when they arrive in less than mint condition—and even more infuriating when they don’t arrive at all. But what about things which arrive in good condition but which aren’t what was ordered?  Returns, ugh!

Some merchants helpfully provide return instructions.

returna cat1

Hmm.  Is there anything in the house that needs to be sent off somewhere?  Maybe something that knocks over houseplants, tries to sneak into the garage, runs races through the house at 3:00 a.m., crinkles any and all paper, licks empty yogurt cartons, and sheds on everything?

I hired the Terror Twins on as minions, but lately they’ve been less about following my orders and more about general mayhem

I have an idea

returna cat2

There!  That ought to do it!

returna cat3

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Things to Hug and Things to Eat

I must admit to enjoying the movie.  Sigyn liked the costumes.  I liked the snark.  

Now all of us, including the friends the humans met up with earlier today, are supposed to go eat dinner.  The rendezvous place?  One of the fun Japanese stores.  It is much like the one in the big city to the west.

It is full of things Sigyn wants to make friends with.

d-kinok-dog

I know you want to take the puppy home, sweetie, and having one more animal to shed on the human female’s clothes is an appealing prospect, I grant you, but it wouldn’t get along with the Terror Twins.

Yes, you are right. This dragon would not shed–at at least not hair.  And I can see that though he looks fierce, he is just a big softy.

d-kinok-dragon

But how big is he going to grow?  You need to think ahead.  Once he’s the size of a house and the neighbors start complaining, you’ll be sad.  That’s right: give him one last hug and tell him goodbye.

That was close!  I thought for a minute we were adding a dragon to the family.  Sigyn, are you about ready to go eat? Sigyn–?

Where did Sigyn go?

I should have known.

d-kinok-panda

Sigyn has been adopted by a family of pandas.  She says that she doesn’t want to bring one home with us, because it would miss all its brothers and sisters and cousins, but she wants to know if she can come back to visit every now and then.

I think that could be arranged…

Dinner awaits!

Looks like we will be eating with sticks again.  Oh, goody.  (I can do it, but ramen is splattery, and my cloak has enough problems already.)

hanabi-ramen1

Ehehehe. I’ve arranged a little surprise for the human female.  She was in the mood for chicken ramen, but ALL the ramen on the menu is pork belly!  (That’s what you get for dragging me to a place that makes me eat with sticks.)  So sad!  Looks like it’s veggie ramen for you!

And all the dumplings for me!

hanabi-ramen2

Well, I’ll share with Sigyn, of course. But none for the rest of you!

Nom nom nom.  Tummy’s full now.  Since I missed my movie nap, I think I may sleep all the way home.  (Which is just as well, as the conversation is sure to be 100% pens.)

Snzzzz….

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Hobby Hijinks, Part III: Mischief That’s Off the Charts

Another of the human female’s hobbies is needlework.  She didn’t do much last year and was hoping to do a lot this year, but then the THUMB happened, and everything’s on hold.  Still she’s been very busy, charting a design she wants to cross stitch.  This is the design–a rug from Portugal.

9214

So she’s been carefully studying closeup photos of the thing, painstakingly transcribing it onto graph paper.

chart-whole1

She has to label each page with its adjacent pages and make little red registration marks for lining them up. It’s going to take over 100 colors of floss–and how many pages of chart so far, Sigyn?

chart-whole

Seventy-one?  She’ll die of old age before she finishes it.

Especially since I’ve convinced the Terror Twins that graph paper is a tasty feline treat!

chart-chewed1

She is putting all the graph paper charting into a computer program—which I’ve finagled so that it only runs on her old computer, the one with imminent hinge-failure.   Since the program allows only 100 colors in any one design, she’s had to split the fool thing into five files which will need to be jigsawed back together after printout.  If anything happens to those computer files and their backups, it’s a couple years’ work–poof! down the drain.  She’s very near finishing.  It would be terrible if anything happened to it…

Lenny!  Fancy meeting you here!  I innocently had no idea you’d be coming by today.  But as long as you’re in the neighborhood, I have a little job for you…

eraser-chart1

(rub, rub, rub…)

eraser-chart2

I knew I liked this guy!

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ENOYING OTHER PEOPLE’S PRESENTS, PART II: Of Mischief and Mirrors

Let us see what else is under the tree that isn’t marked “Loki” but which can be turned profitably to my use.

I am sensing a theme here…

totoropencil

The pencil matches the puzzle from yesterday.  That’s cute, but how does one help with the other?  It’s a fancy pencil, one that rotates the lead so that it is always worn to a sharp point.  Clever.  Bet I can “adjust” the mechanism for maximum mischief.  Or, if not, a very pointy pencil makes a very good improvised weapon…

Ah.  This has even more promise.

christmasink

Blue ink!  One of the human female’s fountain pens is currently filled with a very lovely but thoroughly misbehaving blue called Liberty’s Elysium.  Misbehaving, because I nudged it with a trifling little curdle spell, which was just enough to make it clot up and stop writing in the middle of a sentence, which is hilarious–at least for me.

The human female admired this ink at some point in the past, so it showed up in her stocking.  It’s a pricey brand, so that’s a good present.  I won’t meddle with this one.  I’ll see that it behaves in an exemplary fashion, with nary a blot.  Note, however, that it was a one-off, made by Menteverde for the big stamp show in the realm’s capital this year.  I’ll let the human female fall in love with it, then make sure no other bottle is ever available again.

Sigyn is in raptures over another of the human female’s presents.

christmascompact

I am the farthest thing from a needlework connoisseur, but even I can tell that someone took a lot of pains to make all of those tiny stitches.

chrismascompact2

There’s a little thumb latch, so it would appear that this is meant to open.  What’s inside?

christmascompact3

Just the most beautiful face in the whole world!

I shall create a diversion involving the felines and something chewable or smashable, and in the resulting confusion whisk this lovely mirror away where Sigyn can enjoy it and the human female can’t foul its glass with her ugsome visage.

Still playing by the Cat Rule:  What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine if I can get it.

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