The Old Grey Kitty Test

Our ten-year-old mackerel tabby, Smoky, enjoys rubbing his jowls on all manner of different surfaces and textures. A lot of cats do this. They can deposit and collect information in this way and it presumably also feels quite nice on their whiskers.

Smoky recently acquired a piece of flexible corrugated cardboard (packaging from a parcel, I think) which measures about 18 by 36 inches. He likes to sit on the corrugated side (it’s smooth on the reverse) and today he also, during one of his bouts of preening, began licking the corrugations.

To my ear, Smoky licking corrugated card with his rough feline tongue sounded like nothing so much as one of those washboard homemade instruments that were popular in the 1950s. I must therefore conclude that Smoky has now invented…

Cat Skiffle!


I’ve Been Fleeced!

One of Smoky’s favourite places is the windowsill in the sitting room. As the tiles were too cold for the wee kitty, we wrapped a faux sheepkin cover around some eggbox foam. Despite regular washing of the aforementioned cover, we decided that it was time to replace it.

I found a single bed thermal fleece topper on Amazon, and here it is…as modelled by his Lordship…who’s giving me one of those ‘don’t you dare take another pic or else…’ looks!!

A tissue of lies

Here I go again with my fancy titles. How to justify this one, I wonder? Well, Smoky does enjoy lying on sheets of tissue paper…

I know. It’s a flimsy excuse for a title isn’t it? Especially as it’s only half true now that Smoky, our three-legged cat (although, the speed he goes, you’d think he had five legs sometimes) has taken not so much to stretching himself out on a big sheet of tissue paper on the rug, as pouncing on the stuff and ripping it to shreds.

It’s not all his fault though. Both Shana and I encourage him to be energetic and boisterous. It keeps his weight down and his mind active. First thing in the morning, before yours truly is up and about, Shana gives Smoky his breakfast and soon afterwards he is pretending to be some sort of caped kitty superhero. Let’s call him ‘NuttyCat’.


Wave a fluffy toy on a stick in front of this cat-based tissue pyramid, and NuttyCat will, keeping all that paper on top of himself, dart after whatever is in front of him. Only once the claws emerge do great rents and tears appear in the paper. Then beware. Because now, he can see you!


The green eyes are just a result of camera flash bouncing off his retinas. Or could he have a powerful laser stare?


Here he is (above) planning his next episode of nutty-ness.


What will he do next? Stick his little pink tongue out at us? Or scurry round the back of the sofa, entering at one side, gathering speed, and launching from the other side?

This is just the start of it. When his ears are pointing backwards, that’s the time to steer clear. A mad dash for the litter tray will be sure to follow. For a little kitty, all this excitement can sometimes be just a tad too much 🙂



In case you’re a new reader to this blog, or if you’ve been here before but just haven’t explored all we have to offer, I should just mention…

We have a cat. Click on the word ‘Smoky’ on the top menu and you can see his gallery of pictures. And my, what a handsome fellow he is!

Unfortunately, we have yet to decide which is his ‘best side’. Today’s first photo though, definitely shows his LARGEST side 🙂


Not all Smoky’s fault though. Thing is, Shana wanted to take some photos of her latest lace knitting creation, cleverly titled ‘Whysteria‘. And as I had been pottering around with some gouache (or, in my case, more likely ‘gauche‘) paints the day before and had not tidied up, the dining table was, for photography purposes, out of commission. Therefore, Shana threw a white cloth over the top platform of Smoky’s set of steps, via which he usually accesses his window seat. (Otherwise, it’s an impossible leap for him.) The cloth kept the lace sample away from any cat hair that might be on the stops, and provided a good background for the lilac yarn.

And, with perfect timing, Smoky chose that very moment when Shana had just set up her shots, to bound onto his steps and sit there as if nothing was amiss. He has such a quizzical look when he chooses, just like he was saying ‘Yarn? I haven’t seen any yarn.’


In the clouds and silver linings department though, at least we know who to go to in future if any of Shana’s yarn pieces needs…

A firm pressing! 🙂