Happy Cat, Frustrated Photographer

Her Majesty, Queen Emeraldas, has fallen under the spell of Maggie’s sewing area.

Like so many cats before her, she’s discovered that the space just to the right of the sewing machine is the perfect size for a cat to snooze. It’s got a nice view of the back yard; it’s elevated, away from other cats; and gets plenty of sunlight in the afternoon.

I’ve been trying to get a picture of her on the table for weeks now.

Either the sees me coming and hides or the backlighting from the window is too bright for the camera. Even the much-vaunted iPhone 12 camera can’t work miracles of that magnitude.

Fortunately, Maggie’s sewing chair is almost as attractive a feline hangout as the table.

This shot, taken from across the room–with the aforementioned iPhone 12–has been tweaked a bit to improve the contrast enough to make her eyes visible. But at least it’s recognizably a picture of a cat. A specific cat, even.

Even at such extreme distances, she was distinctly dubious about the whole venture.

But I’m declaring victory. Because sometimes you have to shoot the arrow and then draw the target.

Double-Decker

Even though every condo in the house has at least two levels, it’s rare to see more than one cat per condo.

So it was a surprise to look upstairs a few days ago and see Lefty and Sachiko sharing the “microwave” condo.

It didn’t last long; about fifteen minutes later, Lefty wandered into the bedroom in search of snuggles. But it was nice to see them getting along in close proximity, however briefly.

A Worthy Successor

Rufus was, and probably will always be, the champion blepper of the household.

Fortunately for those of us who love a good blep, Rhubarb is highly accomplished in the field.

(Thanks to Maggie for the photo.)

A master class talent, wouldn’t you say?

And the 3/4 inverted head adds more than a trifling measure of charm.

It is, however, the freckled nose that really sells the blep.

A Rare Sight

This was originally going to be titled “Birds of a Feather” but second thoughts prevailed.

I’ve long held the opinion that every home requires a meezer.

We are currently blessed–if that’s the word–with two. Kokoro is, naturally, the undisputed* empress of the household and queen of all she surveys.

* In her own mind, at least

Emeraldas, on the other forepaw, is the most recent addition to the clowder, and by far the least integrated. She spars vigorously with Lefty, stares at Sachiko with deep suspicion, and retreats precipitously from humans. (Contrarily, of course, she snuggles vigorously with Yuki, and..um…nevermind.)

So the Meezer Ladies don’t spend much time together. Kokoro stays in Maggie’s office, with occasional forays to the bedroom to hang out on my lap, and the kitchen to raid the empty gooshie fud cans. Emeraldas has recently relocated herself from the library upstairs to the living room downstairs–physically a journey of a mere couple of dozen stairs, but far more distant psychologically.

And yet, the twain do meet. And even pose for an occasional photo op.

It’s His Expression That Makes It Work

Sachiko has been feeling frisky lately. Since her usual tussling partner is Watanuki–tuxedo cats have to stick together–we get a lot of scenes like this.

“Hey, Big Brudder Nookles, let’s throw down! Imma take you dis time!”

You can just hear him thinking, “Yeah, right, Kid. Just like you have the last umpty-dozen times I’ve nipped your ears for you.”

So then, of course, he throws the first slap.

We get about ten seconds of mixed martial arts, followed by thundering hoofbeats as Sachiko heads for the supposed safety of one of the condos.

‘Nuki doesn’t bother to chase her. He knows she’ll be back for another round (more than) soon enough.

Ownership

Cats are territorial, but as I’ve noted in the past, ownership can change.

Case in point: the Condo at the Top of the Stairs* was previously Lefty’s spot. Not that he went inside much, but he frequently sat on top of it. Before Lefty took possession, Watanuki was a frequent resident.

* We’re still not sure if it’s supposed to be a TV or a microwave. Certainly the controls suggest the former, but the overall impression seems other. Perhaps it was designed by someone–probably on commission–who’d never actually seen a TV old enough to have a UHF dial. I can see him deciding that a Google Image search would be too much work. “Hmm, that microwave has a couple of dials and is square and boxy. Good enough.”

With the library–currently aka “Emeraldas’ Room–being open most of the day and night, Lefty is spending most of his time in there, leaving the CatTofS vacant. As we saw a couple of weeks ago, Yuki gave it a test, but ultimately he seems to have decided it’s not for him.

Never loathe to stake out turf in a high traffic zone, Sachiko moved in.

Not that gloats about her new habitat, of course.

She just has a smug resting face.

Victory!

I finally got a picture of Emeraldas enjoying the morning sun from the back of the futon.

Emeraldas on the futon

Okay, so it’s not the greatest picture ever. Even the iPhone 12’s much-hyped camera can only do so much with a backlit subject.

But given her aversion to being photographed, I’ll take it.

She has been interacting more with the rest of the gang, and we’ve actually discovered something she dislikes even more than having her picture taken.

Watanuki sniffing Emeraldas' rear

Like many of us, she does not like having her butt sniffed.

Post-slap

Watanuki took her slap to the side of his head surprisingly well–I think he realized a reprimand was in order for violating her royal dignity.

Overflow

I don’t know why pictures of cats who don’t quite fit into their chosen spaces amuses me so much.

Maybe it’s the subtle–or sometimes not-so-subtle–puncturing of their superior attitude.

Or perhaps it’s because it’s an excellent illustration of how flexible the parameters of “If it fits, I sits” can become in the right paws.

Or–most likely of all–because it’s just gosh-darned cute.

As Yuki demonstrated recently.

There is a cat attached to that tail, but I sure can’t prove it.

Not As Advertised

Don’t believe anyone who tells you cats are graceful, elegant creatures.

They trip over their own feet.

They trip over each other.

They sprawl on the floor and melt into puddles of fur.

And, of course, they groom themselves.

At least Mr. Nookles was courteous enough to place that paw where he did. There are children present!

Well, okay, she’s not a child any more and she’s been guilty of the same infraction against public decency, but still…