Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Narrowing things down

Last night I watched a NOVA special on PBS about intelligence in great apes. The researchers conducted one experiment with chimpanzees, then wanted to see if more socially-inclined bonobos would behave differently. The experiment involved the apes pulling a rope that caused something else to move. As the cameras recorded the bonobo experiment, the voice-over said, "The first step is getting the bonobos to concentrate on the task at hand..." as the bonobos proceeded to swing from the rope, then pull themselves along the floor with it. I started laughing and BikerDude heard me, so I explained why I was laughing. He thought for a second and said exactly what I was thinking, "So what you're saying is that Kaos is a bonobo."

Yes! That's exactly it!

I'm not sure what Razor is-- whichever monkey species carefully observes then acts in a way that is easy to blame on someone else, most likely. Is there a sneaky monkey? (OK, ape, I know, I know...). Tweak would still be the psychopathic monkey.

We really need a tall cat tree/jungle gym that these guys can swing from...


On a sadder note, I noticed that my former employer, OJ, didn't follow the instructions of the Virginia State Bar when they suspended his license last summer, and when he lost his appeal he apparently disappeared without notifying his clients, the courts where he had cases pending, or the bar. His license has now been revoked and his practice placed in receivership.

Sigh. Same crap he was doing when I worked there 15 years ago. I guess it's good that it has finally caught up with him, at least for his clients' sakes, but it's still pretty sad.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Long time, no see

After Cinnamon's death, I didn't feel much like writing. That combined with work heating up and keeping me busy meant that I just haven't gotten around to doing any updates. I'm hoping to pick back up now, though.

I still miss my little girl, but I'm really glad we have the other three to keep me distracted. No matter how sad I feel, the boys can still make me laugh! And sometimes Tweak, too. She has actually started occasionally crawling up into my lap and napping-- I think she misses Cinnamon, too. Cinnamon was the only cat she ever cuddled up with-- they used to bathe each other and sleep cuddled up together. She still won't cuddle up with the boys, but they aren't as nasty to each other as they used to be. They seem to have settled into a detente.

Tweak still cracks me up with her little mind games, though. She knows that the boys are still intimidated by her, so she likes to place herself strategically-- stretching out on her back at the foot of the stairs so that they can't get around her, for instance, or laying in wait around a corner for them and pouncing them when they blithely stroll into her trap. She also guards the cat door at the top of the basement stairs, from either side. She truly enjoys positioning herself on one side of the door and slapping the head of whoever comes through. This is why we have to keep a litterbox on the second floor as well as in the basement-- she can't guard both flights of stairs simultaneously, so this way she can't block access to a potty.

Kaos is still his full-throttle, romping, clownish self. He likes to play The Floor Is Lava and see if he can get all the way around any given floor without touching the ground. So far he's broken one lamp, a glass plate and a couple of candles. He's also started Midnight Love sessions with us. He's figured out that about half an hour to an hour after we have gone to bed, if he walks around us, over us and between us purring loudly, he will have us to himself and will get concentrated love and attention. BikerDude particularly likes to watch TV for a little while before going to sleep, and Kaos uses that time to just be silly. He throws himself against use, taking turns headbutting first BikerDude, then me. He crawls up onto us and rolls around, with varying degrees of success depending on how we are laying (I have some hard-to-explain scratches on my hip because I was laying on my side one night when he tried to roll around on my hip, started to slide off, and dug his claws in to regain purchase). He does the Bengal purr-chirp during this time-- purring so hard that he chirps. It's really cute, lucky for him.

I keep telling him that those little love sessions buy him a lot of free spins. I think he knows this.

Razor is still figuring out the whole lap thing. He still insists on laying upside down-- with his head and front paws on my waist and his butt on my shoulder. He now lets me flip him around right-side-up most of the time, and will settle down, purring and chirping and enjoying the attention. His favorite time to do this, though, is in the evening when I'm trying to read the paper (operative word: Trying). He's also started to get into BikerDude's lap while he's working on the computer--that is, when Tweak hasn't already claimed the lap for herself.

Tweak is still unquestionably BikerDude's cat. I am a distant second-place servant/attendant, but she will come to me when BikerDude has thrown her out of his lap at the computer. She has also started regularly slaughtering her toys and bringing us the kill, frequently in the middle of the night. For some reason, she prefers wand toys, which makes me think she may have killed a few snakes or lizards in her feral days. Or she's just being a weirdo. Totally possible.

Anyway, the time has come to invest in a good cat tree. This ought to be entertaining...