Cat-Vacuuming

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Glenda Pfeiffer

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Nov 19, 2001, 10:49:05 AM11/19/01
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Help! I've got an image stuck in my head of chasing my cats around
the house with the vacuum clutched in my hand (chuckling maniacally)
:-)

Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that cat-vacuuming
means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks to do, I really
would like to know the origin of the expression. It does keep
tickling my imagination.

Shimo Suntila

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Nov 19, 2001, 1:40:32 PM11/19/01
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Glenda Pfeiffer <gle...@flash.net> wrote:

: Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that cat-vacuuming


: means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks to do, I really
: would like to know the origin of the expression. It does keep
: tickling my imagination.

I'm glad you asked that. I'd just deduced what the phrase meant,
but it's etymology was bugging me. Now I don't have to show my total
newbieness (is that a real word?) by wondering that aloud. =)

We have three cats and they are mortally afraid of the vacuum cleaner.
I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if I took the phrase literally.

- Shimo, Finnish Fan
--
Shimo Suntila, sh...@utu.fi \ Scifi * Fantasia * Anime * Tähtien sota /
http://users.utu.fi/siilsu/ \ Spin * Vapaa Galaksi * Kosmoskynä /
http://org.utu.fi/yhd/tsfs/ \ Kirjoittaminen * Lukeminen /
http://org.utu.fi/yhd/stk/ \ "Fandom is a way of life." /

Manny Olds

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Nov 19, 2001, 2:07:04 PM11/19/01
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Glenda Pfeiffer <gle...@flash.net> wrote:
> Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that cat-vacuuming
> means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks to do, I really
> would like to know the origin of the expression. It does keep
> tickling my imagination.

No, the task must be something that you can convince yourself *is* important.
Like designing the blazons for each of the (unnamed and non-recurring) minor
noble spear carriers in chapter 5 when perhaps your time would be better spent
fixing the dialog on chapter 6. Because it is an essential part of the
background of the characters and you really do need to understand their
culture to write the book properly and one of them might get promoted to
"Noble #2" some time down the road.


--
Manny Olds (old...@pobox.com) in Riverdale Park, Maryland USA

"After all, isn't fastidiousness and a rigorous insistence on perfect
consistency, symmetry and execution of a design an opinion? Might it not
be its own artistic statement?" -- LAW (Leigh Witchel)


Ian J.

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Nov 19, 2001, 2:42:43 PM11/19/01
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"Glenda Pfeiffer" <gle...@flash.net> wrote in message
news:a8d9041e.01111...@posting.google.com...

I've got images of cats *after* they been vacuumed....and I don't want
them...

--
Ian J.

'Duck!'
'Where?'

www.ijvfilms.co.uk


Brooks Moses

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Nov 19, 2001, 2:39:40 PM11/19/01
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Shimo Suntila wrote:
> Glenda Pfeiffer <gle...@flash.net> wrote:
> : Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that cat-vacuuming
> : means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks to do, I really
> : would like to know the origin of the expression. It does keep
> : tickling my imagination.
>
> I'm glad you asked that. I'd just deduced what the phrase meant,
> but it's etymology was bugging me. Now I don't have to show my total
> newbieness (is that a real word?) by wondering that aloud. =)
>
> We have three cats and they are mortally afraid of the vacuum cleaner.
> I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if I took the phrase literally.

So this is becoming almost a monthly thing, and should probably be put
in a monthly-posted FAQ. :)

Anyhow. Cat-vacuuming, as a phrase, started out with the idea that
vacuuming up cat hairs off of couches and beds and floors and everywhere
else they get is a lot of trouble -- wouldn't it be easier to simply
vacuum the cat ahead of time, and avoid all that? As this idea was
never meant literally, but just as an example of why "I'll do this now
so it doesn't need to get done later" thinking can be wrong, the term
"cat-vacuuming" came to apply to any sort of endeavour that one is doing
with the justification that it is useful because it will save time later
(when, in fact, it won't really), and in particular to ones used as
diversionary tactics to avoid real work.

So, from there, it seems to have rather quickly broadened to refer to
_any_ sort of diversionary task that appears useful, but doesn't really
get one closer to the goal. (It's a little more specific than just
"unnecessary tasks", in most usages, I think; there has to be some
claim, however far-fetched, that it's useful.)

At least, that's my impression of how it developed.

- Brooks

Brenda W. Clough

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Nov 19, 2001, 3:26:02 PM11/19/01
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Shimo Suntila wrote:

> Glenda Pfeiffer <gle...@flash.net> wrote:
>
> : Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that cat-vacuuming
> : means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks to do, I really
> : would like to know the origin of the expression. It does keep
> : tickling my imagination.
>
> I'm glad you asked that. I'd just deduced what the phrase meant,
> but it's etymology was bugging me. Now I don't have to show my total
> newbieness (is that a real word?) by wondering that aloud. =)
>
> We have three cats and they are mortally afraid of the vacuum cleaner.
> I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if I took the phrase literally.
>

Cats are rather small animals for this purpose, but it is possible to train
bigger dogs to be vacuumed. My husband had a boxer who adored it and would
beg to be vacuumed whenever the macine came out. Of course this was in the
days before beater bars.

Brenda

--
What do you do with a secret?
Whisper it in a desert at high noon.
Lock it up and bury the key.
Tell the nation on prime-time TV.
Choose a door . . .

Doors of Death and Life
by Brenda W. Clough
http://www.sff.net/people/Brenda
Tor Books
ISBN 0-312-87064-7


Lori Selke

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Nov 19, 2001, 5:19:00 PM11/19/01
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In article <9tbnbf$1k62d$1...@ID-115975.news.dfncis.de>,
Ian J. <newsg...@ijvfilms.co.uk> wrote:

>I've got images of cats *after* they been vacuumed....and I don't want
>them...

I think one of my cats might end up looking exactly the same as before
(only a little cross) This, judjing by the many clumps of cat hair that
detach from her and litter the house without altering her appearance
in the slightest. (I've seen it in action! One of the other cats takes
a bite at her throat or her tail, comes away with a huge mouthful of
black fur, and the cat is otherwise unaffected. I believe this must
be akin to the detacheable tails of lizards.)


Lori

--
se...@io.com, se...@mindspring.com, http://www.io.com/~selk

"But this isn't a dance! It's upright delirium!" -- The Desert Peach

Jerry Bell

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Nov 19, 2001, 5:31:24 PM11/19/01
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On Mon, 19 Nov 2001 11:39:40 -0800, Brooks Moses <bmo...@stanford.edu>
wrote:

Now, saith the elder lurker, I used to live with a cat that just loved
to be groomed by a canister vacc.
Tom would lie down in front of the person doing the cleaning
and roll and preen, inviting the operator to use the brush and
groom him.

Every other cat I have ever known considered Vaccs to be just dripping
with menance and would run for cover upon hearing one start up.

Go figure?

JD

Rosemary Lake

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Nov 19, 2001, 6:18:55 PM11/19/01
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On Mon, 19 Nov 2001 11:39:40 -0800, Brooks Moses <bmo...@stanford.edu>
wrote:
/snip/

>Cat-vacuuming, as a phrase, started out with the idea that
>vacuuming up cat hairs off of couches and beds and floors and everywhere
>else they get is a lot of trouble -- wouldn't it be easier to simply
>vacuum the cat ahead of time, and avoid all that? As this idea was
>never meant literally, but just as an example of why "I'll do this now
>so it doesn't need to get done later" thinking can be wrong, the term
>"cat-vacuuming" came to apply to any sort of endeavour that one is doing
>with the justification that it is useful because it will save time later
>(when, in fact, it won't really), and in particular to ones used as
>diversionary tactics to avoid real work.


I hadn't caught that point. Perhaps because I have a vague memory of my
mother doing this long ago, and her rugs staying really clean. She said her
long-haired cat liked it. (My Siamese would never stand for it, but I think
some of my dogs liked it.)

Hm. My mother tended to do other things to save time or trouble later,
which weren't as practical, though. Or is this considered impractical
because most cats would object? I think of 'cat-vacuuming' in the rasfc-ian
sense as meaning something seductively easy.


>So, from there, it seems to have rather quickly broadened to refer to
>_any_ sort of diversionary task that appears useful, but doesn't really
>get one closer to the goal. (It's a little more specific than just
>"unnecessary tasks", in most usages, I think; there has to be some
>claim, however far-fetched, that it's useful.)
>
>At least, that's my impression of how it developed.


Thank you for the details.


Rosemary

http://www.sonic.net/mary/writing/My_original_stories.html
"It's possible to do darn near anything if we figure out certain
definite things....We can do anything we think of with this."
-- Walt Disney

Supermouse

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Nov 19, 2001, 8:59:20 PM11/19/01
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In article <g92jvt0ivbrfo3ncu...@4ax.com>, Jerry Bell
<jdbe...@swbell.net> writes

>Every other cat I have ever known considered Vaccs to be just dripping
>with menance and would run for cover upon hearing one start up.

Mine occasionally goes one better and sneaks back up on it and kills the
electric flex, with a paw extended exactly as far as it will go and
several quick thwacks.

It's not quite as funny as watching her killing an ice cube was.

Cordially,
--
Supermouse
Living from Hand to Mouse

Patricia C. Wrede

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Nov 20, 2001, 12:19:53 AM11/20/01
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In article <yt9vGPB4...@ntlworld.com>, Supermouse
<Super...@ntlworld.com> writes:

>In article <g92jvt0ivbrfo3ncu...@4ax.com>, Jerry Bell
><jdbe...@swbell.net> writes
>>Every other cat I have ever known considered Vaccs to be just dripping
>>with menance and would run for cover upon hearing one start up.
>
>Mine occasionally goes one better and sneaks back up on it and kills the
>electric flex, with a paw extended exactly as far as it will go and
>several quick thwacks.

Brisen is utterly blase about vacuums; I have had to be careful at times not to
run over her tail. Merlin flees the moment I turn it on...unless one of the
girls is present to see him. If Nimmie or Bris is anywhere in sight, he does
not do his disappearing act; instead, he climbs on the highest piece of
furniture he can find and snarls and hisses at the enemy. This does not seem
to have impressed the other two at all, but he keeps trying.

Patricia C. Wrede

Irina Rempt

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Nov 20, 2001, 2:56:03 AM11/20/01
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Jerry Bell wrote:

> Every other cat I have ever known considered Vaccs to be just
> dripping with menance and would run for cover upon hearing one start
> up.

Ours do that, though not as frantically as the previous cats. We call
the vacuum cleaner "the cat-scaring machine".

Irina

--
ir...@valdyas.org
http://www.valdyas.org/irina/index.html (English)
http://www.valdyas.org/irina/backpage.html (Nederlands)

Dorothy J Heydt

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Nov 20, 2001, 5:09:06 AM11/20/01
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In article <20011120001953...@nso-mg.aol.com>,

Sebastian, in harmony with his general and utter dummitude, is
fascinated by the vacuum cleaner (a largish and very noisy Shop
Vac). He will leave one room and come into another just to stand
next to it and stare at it. I have not yet attempted to vacuum
him; he would probably put up with it; he puts up with most
things you have to do to him. (Except having blood drawn. For
that, nine times out of ten, the vets have to give him a general
anesthesia.)

Dorothy J. Heydt
Albany, California
djh...@kithrup.com
http://www.kithrup.com/~djheydt

Glenda Pfeiffer

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Nov 20, 2001, 10:33:29 AM11/20/01
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se...@bermuda.io.com (Lori Selke) wrote in message
> I think one of my cats might end up looking exactly the same as before
> (only a little cross) This, judjing by the many clumps of cat hair that
> detach from her and litter the house without altering her appearance
> in the slightest.

Sounds like your cat is related to one of mine. I have three black
cats, one long-hair and two short-hair. The long-hair definitely has
an endless supply of hair. No matter how much is on the floor, and
how much I brush out, she still has just as much as she started with.

And thanks to those who cleared up my original question. Yes, I had
missed the distinction that to be cat-vacuuming, it has to be
something you have convinced yourself is necessary, really.

Joyce Reynolds-Ward

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Nov 20, 2001, 11:34:44 AM11/20/01
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On Mon, 19 Nov 2001 15:26:02 -0500, "Brenda W. Clough"
<clo...@erols.com> wrote:

snip

>Cats are rather small animals for this purpose, but it is possible to train
>bigger dogs to be vacuumed. My husband had a boxer who adored it and would
>beg to be vacuumed whenever the macine came out. Of course this was in the
>days before beater bars.

Many biggish horse show barns also have horse vacuums.

jrw

Daniel Kurtz

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Nov 20, 2001, 1:20:11 PM11/20/01
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Contestant: I'll take Paul Lynne to block.
Emcee: Is it OK to use a vacuum cleaner on your dog?
Paul Lynne: I find that 'walkies' work better.

Constance Anderson

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Nov 20, 2001, 4:08:48 PM11/20/01
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"Glenda Pfeiffer" <gle...@flash.net> wrote in message
news:a8d9041e.01112...@posting.google.com...

> Sounds like your cat is related to one of mine. I have three black
> cats, one long-hair and two short-hair. The long-hair definitely has
> an endless supply of hair. No matter how much is on the floor, and
> how much I brush out, she still has just as much as she started with.

Our Cleopatra has longish, golden fur which she sheds in great clumps,
particularly when she's distressed. It, too, doesn't seem to alter her
appearance, though the shedding-when-distressed leads me to believe that, if
vaccuumed, she would become quite bald. (When Mum used to take her to the
vet, she'd crawl up on her shoulder and leave great fluffs of yellow fur all
over her shirt -- of course, she sheds some when being held, but these were
amazing puffballs.)

Connie


John F. Eldredge

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Nov 20, 2001, 10:00:53 PM11/20/01
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-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1

On Mon, 19 Nov 2001 18:40:32 +0000 (UTC), Shimo Suntila
<sii...@utu.fi> wrote:

>Glenda Pfeiffer <gle...@flash.net> wrote:
>
>: Actually, while it is perfectly clear from context that
>cat-vacuuming : means procrastinating by finding unnecessary tasks
>to do, I really : would like to know the origin of the expression.
>It does keep
>: tickling my imagination.
>
> I'm glad you asked that. I'd just deduced what the phrase meant,
>
>but it's etymology was bugging me. Now I don't have to show my
>total newbieness (is that a real word?) by wondering that aloud.
>=)
>
> We have three cats and they are mortally afraid of the vacuum
> cleaner.
>I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if I took the phrase literally.

It depends upon the cat, and upon the vacuum cleaner. My father had
a cat who loved to be vacuumed with a Dustbuster (a brand of
hand-held, battery-powered vacuum cleaner). When she heard it
running, she would come to be vacuumed. If you turned on the large
vacuum cleaner, on the other hand, she would flee to the far end of
the house.

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--
John F. Eldredge -- eldr...@earthlink.net, eldr...@poboxes.com
PGP key available from http://pgpkeys.mit.edu:11371

"There must be, not a balance of power, but a community of power;
not organized rivalries, but an organized common peace."
Woodrow Wilson

Rhys Greenbrier

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Nov 20, 2001, 11:45:56 PM11/20/01
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In article <20011120001953...@nso-mg.aol.com>, pwred...@aol.com
(Patricia C. Wrede) wrote:

>>>Every other cat I have ever known considered Vaccs to be just dripping
>
>>>with menance and would run for cover upon hearing one start up.
>>
>>Mine occasionally goes one better and sneaks back up on it and kills the
>>electric flex, with a paw extended exactly as far as it will go and
>>several quick thwacks.
>
>Brisen is utterly blase about vacuums; I have had to be careful at times
>not to
>run over her tail. Merlin flees the moment I turn it on...unless one of
>the
>girls is present to see him. If Nimmie or Bris is anywhere in sight, he
>does
>not do his disappearing act; instead, he climbs on the highest piece of
>furniture he can find and snarls and hisses at the enemy. This does not
>seem
>to have impressed the other two at all, but he keeps trying.
>
>Patricia C. Wrede
>

My wife and I had a cat that liked to sit on top of the (canister-type) vac
while she was vacuuming. The cat was strange in other ways, too.

Rhys

Cathy Purchis-Jefferies

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Nov 21, 2001, 12:18:23 AM11/21/01
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Hilfy seems to think that the vacuum needs watching, but Vatch and Banshee
normally head for the back porch when they hear the vacuum being removed from
the closet. Yesterday though, I came home after being away for 4 days and
Banshee was desperate enough to see me that she actually stayed in the next room
while I was vacuuming.

(Nobody had petted Banshee for the whole 4 days I was away, but that is only
because she hides behind the stove whenever anyone who is not me comes in the
house. I've had a neighbor cat-sit for me for the past year, and she has yet to
see the cat.)

--
"George" Cathy Purchis cat...@value.net
But YOU can see her
http://pwp.value.net/catpur/banshee.htm

Neil Barnes

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Nov 21, 2001, 3:57:34 AM11/21/01
to
John F. Eldredge <eldr...@earthlink.net> wrote in
<i16mvtkjk436hvr5n...@4ax.com>:

>It depends upon the cat, and upon the vacuum cleaner. My father had
>a cat who loved to be vacuumed with a Dustbuster (a brand of
>hand-held, battery-powered vacuum cleaner). When she heard it
>running, she would come to be vacuumed. If you turned on the large
>vacuum cleaner, on the other hand, she would flee to the far end of
>the house.

My sister had a gerbil (yep!) who whenever the vac was heard would come to
the side of the cage. It loved to flatten itself into the breeze pulling
into the tube...good job there was always a cage in the way :-)


--
I have a quantum car. Every time I look at the speedometer I get lost...

barnacle
http://www.nailed-barnacle.co.uk

joy beeson

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Nov 21, 2001, 1:15:51 PM11/21/01
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"Constance Anderson" <c...@usc.edu> wrote:

>. . . (When Mum used to take her to the


>vet, she'd crawl up on her shoulder and leave great fluffs of yellow fur all
>over her shirt -- of course, she sheds some when being held, but these were
>amazing puffballs.)

One of my childhood memories is the time a vet moved into
a near-by town, and my sister and I took it into our heads
that our old yellow cat needed a check-up. He did not
agree.

As we were leaving, we heard the vet telephone his wife:
"Bring the vacuum down here, then go out and buy one for the
clinic."

--
Joy Beeson
joy beeson at earthlink dot net

Marilee J. Layman

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Nov 21, 2001, 5:13:43 PM11/21/01
to
On Wed, 21 Nov 2001 05:18:23 GMT, Cathy Purchis-Jefferies
<cat...@value.net> wrote:

>Hilfy seems to think that the vacuum needs watching, but Vatch and Banshee
>normally head for the back porch when they hear the vacuum being removed from
>the closet. Yesterday though, I came home after being away for 4 days and
>Banshee was desperate enough to see me that she actually stayed in the next room
>while I was vacuuming.
>
>(Nobody had petted Banshee for the whole 4 days I was away, but that is only
>because she hides behind the stove whenever anyone who is not me comes in the
>house. I've had a neighbor cat-sit for me for the past year, and she has yet to
>see the cat.)

The friend who feeds my cats when I've been away for the almost three
years I've had most of them has never seen any of them when he comes
by himself. He reports that the food is gone and the litterbox used.
When he drops by for a visit, he'll see Smudge at a distance, Giorgio
will come close enough to eat his shoelaces, and the last time he
came, he saw Spirit from a distance.

When I come home, everybody is excited.

--
Marilee J. Layman
Bali Sterling Beads at Wholesale
http://www.basicbali.com

Charles R Martin

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Nov 21, 2001, 5:36:50 PM11/21/01
to

I'm a little concerned about my Siamese on this point. Up to now,
she's had my Aby as company, and of course he died last month. I'm
going to New York on a gig on Sunday for a few days, and then to
Mexico on vacation the week after.

I guess it won't actually _hurt_ her, but I can't decide if it's more
kind to keep her here where all is familiar, or take her to board with
the vet so she gets some stimulation.

--
Chrysanthemum growers -- you are the slaves of your chrysanthemums! -- Buso
______________________________________________________________________________
Charles R (Charlie) Martin Broomfield, CO 40N 105W

Marilee J. Layman

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Nov 22, 2001, 1:02:45 AM11/22/01
to
On 21 Nov 2001 15:36:50 -0700, Charles R Martin <crma...@indra.com>
wrote:

Well, as I've mentioned, mine are all mentally ill. Smudge also has a
bad heart murmur, for which he gets pills twice a day. I thought I'd
have to board him the first time I went away after he moved in because
nobody else is going to be able to give him pills here, but the vet
said boarding would be worse for his heart than doing without pills
for a week.

Jonathan L Cunningham

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Nov 22, 2001, 8:33:08 AM11/22/01
to
On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 01:02:45 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
<mjla...@erols.com> pos[i]ted:

>Well, as I've mentioned, mine [cats] are all mentally ill. Smudge also has a

I missed that. How can you tell?

(ObAlice-Through-The-Looking-Glass)

Jonathan

--
Jonathan L Cunningham

Marilee J. Layman

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Nov 22, 2001, 9:37:48 AM11/22/01
to
On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 13:33:08 GMT, Jonathan....@tesco.net
(Jonathan L Cunningham) wrote:

>On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 01:02:45 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
><mjla...@erols.com> pos[i]ted:
>
>>Well, as I've mentioned, mine [cats] are all mentally ill. Smudge also has a
>
>I missed that. How can you tell?

The vet told me. :) First, she told me when she asked me to take
Spirit directly from the breeder (also one of her clients). Spirit
was born with bad brain chemistry, just like people. She has anxiety
disorder and compulsive disorder (nobody knows if cats have obsessive
thoughts) and wouldn't be a fit pet or breeder. Helen, the vet, knew
I had a nice quiet house with an elderly cat (who has since died) and
that I'm home most of the day. So I took Miss Girl and a course of
Buspar has made her better, but she's still afraid of pretty much
everything.

When Helen asked me to take Giorgio, he'd come from the same breeder
to be the fifth cat in a house and the first cat literally tried to
kill him. They tried meds for both but it didn't work, so Giorgio,
with his case of kitty PTSD, came to live with me. I have to give him
a week of Valium every so often to keep him from being so scared he
can't function.

Smudge was brutally abused by his former "owners" and also has the
kitty version of PTSD. He's lived with us almost two years and is
still afraid even of us sometimes.

And right now, I have a cat outside yelling at the front door. He
woke us up at 4:30am. I don't recognize him, and he looks like a pet.
I don't know how he figured out there's cats here in the middle of the
night.

Anna Feruglio Dal Dan

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Nov 22, 2001, 10:02:05 AM11/22/01
to
Marilee J. Layman <mjla...@erols.com> wrote:

> Smudge was brutally abused by his former "owners" and also has the
> kitty version of PTSD. He's lived with us almost two years and is
> still afraid even of us sometimes.

When I went to pick up mine at the shelter, there was a handsome, sleek
white cat in a cage in the back, inside the big kitten's enclosure. I
looked at it and he flattened the ears and hissed silently. I've never
seen a more menacing creature in my life. The warden explained to me
that he'd be so abused by his owners that they had a lot of trouble even
getting near him. They couldn't put him in the males' house, but he was
driven to frenzy by females too, and he only seemed to calm down a bit
among the kittens. They told me there were absolutely no chances of
finding a home for him: _they_ were scared of it.

--
Anna Feruglio Dal Dan
http://www.fantascienza.net/sfpeople/elethiomel
Gens una sumus

Marilee J. Layman

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Nov 23, 2001, 12:59:29 AM11/23/01
to

You should see the scars Smudge gave me on my arms! But it was worth
it, he's on the heart meds now and the vet said he wouldn't have lived
to the end of last year if I hadn't taken him. (The worst part of the
scars was that I was on a blood thinner and it took *forever* to stop
bleeding.)

Marilee J. Layman

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Nov 23, 2001, 1:00:07 AM11/23/01
to
On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 09:37:48 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
<mjla...@erols.com> wrote:

>And right now, I have a cat outside yelling at the front door. He
>woke us up at 4:30am. I don't recognize him, and he looks like a pet.
>I don't know how he figured out there's cats here in the middle of the
>night.

The poor kitty is still out there, still yelling. I put out food and
water earlier, but I hesitate to take in a cat I don't know.

Karen Lofstrom

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 2:15:26 AM11/23/01
to
In article <9eprvtclbltrr8ed6...@4ax.com>,
Marilee J. Layman wrote:

> The poor kitty is still out there, still yelling. I put out food and
> water earlier, but I hesitate to take in a cat I don't know.

In fairness to your other cats, you can't. Not unless you want to keep the
guy completely separate until he's been checked for fleas, worms, FIV,
etc. Not to mention the social problems.

I took in a family of strays a few years ago and DID keep them separate
until they'd been checked out. But the social problems are STILL there.
One of my older cats, who thought she was the queen of the house, has been
dethroned by the smallest -- but most aggressive -- of the new cats. They
still hiss and swipe and occasionally fight.

--
Karen Lofstrom lofs...@lava.net
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Look! Leo's mutating into a fire truck!

David Goldfarb

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 7:05:18 AM11/23/01
to
In article <3BF95FFC...@stanford.edu>,
Brooks Moses <bmo...@stanford.edu> wrote:
>Anyhow. Cat-vacuuming, as a phrase, started out with the idea that

>vacuuming up cat hairs off of couches and beds and floors and everywhere
>else they get is a lot of trouble -- wouldn't it be easier to simply
>vacuum the cat ahead of time, and avoid all that? As this idea was
>never meant literally, but just as an example of why "I'll do this now
>so it doesn't need to get done later" thinking can be wrong, the term
>"cat-vacuuming" came to apply to any sort of endeavour that one is doing
>with the justification that it is useful because it will save time later
>(when, in fact, it won't really), and in particular to ones used as
>diversionary tactics to avoid real work.
>
>So, from there, it seems to have rather quickly broadened to refer to
>_any_ sort of diversionary task that appears useful, but doesn't really
>get one closer to the goal. (It's a little more specific than just
>"unnecessary tasks", in most usages, I think; there has to be some
>claim, however far-fetched, that it's useful.)
>
>At least, that's my impression of how it developed.

I remember the first time it was used here -- frustratingly, a search
on groups.google doesn't turn it up. But your explanation in the first
paragraph is (while plausible) pretty much completely wrong. "Cat-vacuuming"
was always the things you would do to avoid having to sit down and
actually write. Someone talked about how when they felt really stuck
they'd do all sorts of useful or not-so things. "I need to clean the
drapes, and rearrange the spice rack, and oil that squeaky door, and
my GOSH, how long has it been since I've vacuumed the cat?" No reference
to "doing it now instead of later"; just a case of how far-fetched one's
thoughts can get when desperately trying to avoid some one thing in
particular.

--
David Goldfarb <*>|"Sunset over Houma. The rains have stopped.
gold...@ocf.berkeley.edu | Clouds like plugs of bloodied cotton wool dab
| ineffectually at the slashed wrists of the sky."
gold...@csua.berkeley.edu | -- Alan Moore

Marilee J. Layman

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 10:15:09 AM11/23/01
to
On Fri, 23 Nov 2001 01:00:07 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
<mjla...@erols.com> wrote:

>On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 09:37:48 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
><mjla...@erols.com> wrote:
>
>>And right now, I have a cat outside yelling at the front door. He
>>woke us up at 4:30am. I don't recognize him, and he looks like a pet.
>>I don't know how he figured out there's cats here in the middle of the
>>night.
>
>The poor kitty is still out there, still yelling. I put out food and
>water earlier, but I hesitate to take in a cat I don't know.

And indeed, still yelling. The cats have all talked to him through
the window now, and they must be saying how good they have it here.

Marilee J. Layman

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 10:16:24 AM11/23/01
to
On 23 Nov 2001 07:15:26 GMT, lofs...@lava.net (Karen Lofstrom) wrote:

>In article <9eprvtclbltrr8ed6...@4ax.com>,
>Marilee J. Layman wrote:
>
>> The poor kitty is still out there, still yelling. I put out food and
>> water earlier, but I hesitate to take in a cat I don't know.
>
>In fairness to your other cats, you can't. Not unless you want to keep the
>guy completely separate until he's been checked for fleas, worms, FIV,
>etc. Not to mention the social problems.

Yeah, I'm familiar with isolation, and I have a guest bathroom that I
use for that. But with three cats who are already mentally ill and
poor adapters, I don't see how I can have another cat, even
temporarily.

Dorothy J Heydt

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 10:58:36 AM11/23/01
to
In article <9tkt2e$18i$1...@mochi.lava.net>,

Karen Lofstrom <lofs...@lava.net> wrote:
>
>I took in a family of strays a few years ago and DID keep them separate
>until they'd been checked out. But the social problems are STILL there.
>One of my older cats, who thought she was the queen of the house, has been
>dethroned by the smallest -- but most aggressive -- of the new cats. They
>still hiss and swipe and occasionally fight.

On a happier note, we recently took in a fourth cat. We, and our
upstairs neighbors, have to move soon because the new owners want
to renovate the building. We were chatting with this neighbor
and she mentioned that she'd found a house, but the landlord wouldn't
allow pets, "so we don't know what we're going to do with
Jasmine."

(We will all pause for a moment of shock at an otherwise nice
family that, having a cat, would deliberately rent a house that
doesn't allow pets and THEN wonder what to do with the cat. But
these people are not cat-savvy anyway, I could a tale unfold but
I won't.)

"We'll take her!" I said, as quick as breath, and Hal did not
open his mouth to disagree. (He is against acquiring cats just
to have more cats, but he's a sucker for a cat in distress.)

So we restricted our three to the bedroom/bathroom area and set
Jasmine up in the living room/kitchen area. The first week was
the worse, because she had been used to being an outside cat, and
she wanted OUT dammit, and being a Siamese she let us know all
about it. She also clawed and bit my ankles whenever I went by.

The second week she calmed down some, and that was about the time
the interior door was left open by accident and Sebastian (the
stupid one, you remember) came out. They sniffed noses; they
looked blank; Sebastian tried to sniff Jasmine's tail, got hissed
at, backed off. They wandered around ignoring each other for a
while.

Three or four days later all three of them got out of the bedroom
and encountered Jasmine. Some sniffs. No hisses. Now they get
along and all have the run of the house. Jasmine has stopped
biting me (mostly) and likes to curl up on my chest and rumble.

Now all we need is to find a place that will take four cats, plus
two humans, five computers, about six thousand books.

Brenda W. Clough

unread,
Nov 23, 2001, 4:40:25 PM11/23/01
to
If there is absolutely no other recourse, email me. We don't live so far
apart, right? Another cat would make the current Dominant Feline furious,
but it would do him good.

Brenda

"Marilee J. Layman" wrote:

--
What do you do with a secret?
Whisper it in a desert at high noon.
Lock it up and bury the key.
Tell the nation on prime-time TV.
Choose a door . . .

Doors of Death and Life
by Brenda W. Clough
http://www.sff.net/people/Brenda
Tor Books
ISBN 0-312-87064-7


Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 12:40:38 AM11/24/01
to
gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:

>In article <3BF95FFC...@stanford.edu>,
>Brooks Moses <bmo...@stanford.edu> wrote:
>>Anyhow. Cat-vacuuming, as a phrase, started out with the idea that
>>vacuuming up cat hairs off of couches and beds and floors and everywhere
>>else they get is a lot of trouble -- wouldn't it be easier to simply
>>vacuum the cat ahead of time, and avoid all that? As this idea was
>>never meant literally, but just as an example of why "I'll do this now
>>so it doesn't need to get done later" thinking can be wrong, the term
>>"cat-vacuuming" came to apply to any sort of endeavour that one is doing
>>with the justification that it is useful because it will save time later
>>(when, in fact, it won't really), and in particular to ones used as
>>diversionary tactics to avoid real work.

[snip]


>>At least, that's my impression of how it developed.

>I remember the first time it was used here -- frustratingly, a search
>on groups.google doesn't turn it up.

I *knew* it had something to do with Teresa Nielsen Hayden, and
finally dragged the phrase "waxing the cat" out of my memory and
tried that. Now I can't recall the date, but it was late in 1999,
I think.

>But your explanation in the first
>paragraph is (while plausible) pretty much completely wrong. "Cat-vacuuming"
>was always the things you would do to avoid having to sit down and
>actually write.

This is correct. Teresa was talking about Writing Avoidance
Behavior. "We call it waxing the cat."

>Someone talked about how when they felt really stuck
>they'd do all sorts of useful or not-so things. "I need to clean the
>drapes, and rearrange the spice rack, and oil that squeaky door, and
>my GOSH, how long has it been since I've vacuumed the cat?"

At that point it was "waxed the cat."

>No reference
>to "doing it now instead of later"; just a case of how far-fetched one's
>thoughts can get when desperately trying to avoid some one thing in
>particular.

Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.

--

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet (pd...@demesne.com)
"I will open my heart to a blank page
and interview the witnesses." John M. Ford, "Shared World"

Darkhawk (H. Nicoll)

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 12:48:56 AM11/24/01
to
Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
> Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
> remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
> cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
> rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.

Really? It's my fault? I'm stunned; I thought I got it from somewhere.

(And the stupid cat is currently curled up against my hip. As opposed
to the smart cat, who is probably upstairs annoying the partner.)


--
Heather Anne Nicoll - Darkhawk - http://aelfhame.net/~darkhawk/
Just a world that we all must share, it's not enough just to stand and
stare: Is it only a dream that there'll be no more turning away?
--Pink Floyd, "On the Turning Away"

Marilee J. Layman

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 5:33:59 AM11/24/01
to
On Fri, 23 Nov 2001 16:40:25 -0500, "Brenda W. Clough"
<clo...@erols.com> wrote:

>If there is absolutely no other recourse, email me. We don't live so far
>apart, right? Another cat would make the current Dominant Feline furious,
>but it would do him good.

Thanks! I haven't heard him recently, maybe his people accidently
left him out when they went away for T-day.

David Goldfarb

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 7:48:50 AM11/24/01
to
In article <1f3cq6t.xh...@h000a2789fa80.ne.mediaone.net>,

Darkhawk (H. Nicoll) <dark...@mailandnews.com> wrote:
>Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
>> Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
>> remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
>> cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
>> rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.
>
>Really? It's my fault? I'm stunned; I thought I got it from somewhere.

Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you. She had a direct followup
to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
about six weeks later.

'In its most advanced form, this activity is known as "running for
Governor of Minnesota".' -- TNH

--
David Goldfarb <*>|"Oh, no! They've all become giant Swiss
gold...@ocf.berkeley.edu | lederhosen-clad dancing yodelers!"
|
gold...@csua.berkeley.edu | -- Animaniacs

Brenda W. Clough

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 1:15:40 PM11/24/01
to

David Goldfarb wrote:

> In article <1f3cq6t.xh...@h000a2789fa80.ne.mediaone.net>,
> Darkhawk (H. Nicoll) <dark...@mailandnews.com> wrote:
> >Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
> >> Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
> >> remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
> >> cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
> >> rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.
> >
> >Really? It's my fault? I'm stunned; I thought I got it from somewhere.
>
> Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
> I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you. She had a direct followup
> to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
> of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
> about six weeks later.
>

Obviously the Oxford English Dictionary folks should be informed of this, pronto.

Brenda

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 1:25:39 PM11/24/01
to
dark...@mailandnews.com (Darkhawk (H. Nicoll)) writes:

>Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
>> Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
>> remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
>> cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
>> rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.

>Really? It's my fault? I'm stunned; I thought I got it from somewhere.

Well, that's what the thread showed when I looked at it. You
were responding to Teresa about waxing the cat; this doesn't mean
you weren't making an embedded reference to cat-vacuuming as well,
but it must have come from somewhere else. Like not rasfc at all.

My Google search abilities are somewhat limited by impatience,
however.

>(And the stupid cat is currently curled up against my hip. As opposed
>to the smart cat, who is probably upstairs annoying the partner.)

My orange fluffball comedian is eating food behind me. I dunno
what the other six are doing. Nobody is going to vacuum any of
them any time soon. Waxing might be a possibility, as some of
them are sound sleepers.

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet

unread,
Nov 24, 2001, 1:27:34 PM11/24/01
to
gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:

>In article <1f3cq6t.xh...@h000a2789fa80.ne.mediaone.net>,
>Darkhawk (H. Nicoll) <dark...@mailandnews.com> wrote:
>>Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
>>> Google reveals that the vacuuming came in when Heather Anne Nicoll (Darkhawk)
>>> remarked not long after that she had actually vacuumed "the stupid
>>> cat." At that point people started to use "cat-vacuuming"
>>> rather than "waxing the cat" quite quickly.
>>
>>Really? It's my fault? I'm stunned; I thought I got it from somewhere.

>Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
>I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you. She had a direct followup
>to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
>of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
>about six weeks later.

Thank you! I was trying to weed the 2600-some-odd-message thread
down to something I could look at without tearing my hair out,
and bit either too deep or not deep enough.

>'In its most advanced form, this activity is known as "running for
>Governor of Minnesota".' -- TNH

Indeed and truly. Now I wonder if Jesse Ventura was practicing
Writing Avoidance Behavior.

David Goldfarb

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 12:28:34 AM11/25/01
to
In article <qERL7.193$JS.1...@news.uswest.net>,

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
>gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:
>>Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
>>I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you[Darkhawk]. She had a
>>direct followup
>>to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
>>of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
>>about six weeks later.
>
>Thank you! I was trying to weed the 2600-some-odd-message thread
>down to something I could look at without tearing my hair out,
>and bit either too deep or not deep enough.

Now that's odd, because all I did was tell google to search on "cat
waxing" in rasfc, and it came up with about a dozen articles, of
which TNH's original was the last and Mary Gentle's was next-to-last.

--
David Goldfarb <*>|"Nothing is more annoying to the discoverers of a
gold...@ocf.berkeley.edu | new land without human habitation than to find
gold...@csua.berkeley.edu | that the natives have a strong sense of property
| rights." -- John M. Ford

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 1:00:28 AM11/25/01
to
gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:

>In article <qERL7.193$JS.1...@news.uswest.net>,
>Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
>>gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:
>>>Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
>>>I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you[Darkhawk]. She had a
>>>direct followup
>>>to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
>>>of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
>>>about six weeks later.
>>
>>Thank you! I was trying to weed the 2600-some-odd-message thread
>>down to something I could look at without tearing my hair out,
>>and bit either too deep or not deep enough.

>Now that's odd, because all I did was tell google to search on "cat
>waxing" in rasfc, and it came up with about a dozen articles, of
>which TNH's original was the last and Mary Gentle's was next-to-last.

I only got four using that metric.

I probably did something wrong somewhere.

Brenda W. Clough

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 1:19:23 PM11/25/01
to

Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet wrote:

> gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:
>
> >In article <qERL7.193$JS.1...@news.uswest.net>,
> >Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet <pd...@gw.dd-b.net> wrote:
> >>gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU (David Goldfarb) writes:
> >>>Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
> >>>I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you[Darkhawk]. She had a
> >>>direct followup
> >>>to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
> >>>of "waxing" -- your post talking about vacuuming the stupid cat came
> >>>about six weeks later.
> >>
> >>Thank you! I was trying to weed the 2600-some-odd-message thread
> >>down to something I could look at without tearing my hair out,
> >>and bit either too deep or not deep enough.
>
> >Now that's odd, because all I did was tell google to search on "cat
> >waxing" in rasfc, and it came up with about a dozen articles, of
> >which TNH's original was the last and Mary Gentle's was next-to-last.
>
> I only got four using that metric.
>
> I probably did something wrong somewhere.
>

It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least to
humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.

Neil

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 1:07:04 PM11/25/01
to
In article <3BFFE3CC...@erols.com>, Brenda W. Clough
<clo...@erols.com> writes

>David Goldfarb wrote:
>> Armed with the "waxing" clue I just looked it up on groups.google, and
>> I think it was Mary Gentle instead of you. She had a direct followup
>> to TNH saying that in her house they called it "hoovering the cat" instead
>
>Obviously the Oxford English Dictionary folks should be informed of this,
>pronto.

Oh, they already know :-)

Neil

Jo Walton

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 4:37:17 PM11/25/01
to
In article <kvxjqBAI...@hapax.demon.co.uk>
gwy...@hapax.demon.co.uk "Neil" writes:

I would say "Nobody expects the Oxford English Dictionary" except that I
did expect you to pop up in response to that.

--
Jo J...@bluejo.demon.co.uk
I kissed a kif at Kefk
*THE KING'S PEACE* out now *THE KING'S NAME* out imminently from Tor.
Sample Chapters, Map, Poems, & stuff at http://www.bluejo.demon.co.uk

David Goldfarb

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 11:13:16 PM11/25/01
to
In article <3C01362B...@erols.com>,

Brenda W. Clough <clo...@erols.com> wrote:
>It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least to
>humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.

Yes, but "cat-vacuuming" sounds better than "waxing the cat". Hence
the instant popularity of the former phrase. Besides, while the humans
may think that vacuuming the cat would be useful, with 99.9% of cats
it would be impossible.

--
David Goldfarb <*>|"I think hyperbole is the second greatest thing to
gold...@ocf.berkeley.edu |come along since the invention of the mixing bowl."
gold...@csua.berkeley.edu |
| -- Todd VerBeek, on rec.arts.comics.dc.lsh

Jonathan W. Hendry

unread,
Nov 25, 2001, 11:56:06 PM11/25/01
to

"David Goldfarb" <gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU> wrote in message
news:9tsfgs$148v$1...@agate.berkeley.edu...

> In article <3C01362B...@erols.com>,
> Brenda W. Clough <clo...@erols.com> wrote:
> >It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least
to
> >humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.
>
> Yes, but "cat-vacuuming" sounds better than "waxing the cat". Hence
> the instant popularity of the former phrase. Besides, while the humans
> may think that vacuuming the cat would be useful, with 99.9% of cats
> it would be impossible.

Plus,'wax' is sometimes used in a sense that means 'terminate' or 'kill'.


Graham Woodland

unread,
Nov 26, 2001, 3:31:04 AM11/26/01
to
David Goldfarb wrote

>In article <3C01362B...@erols.com>,
>Brenda W. Clough <clo...@erols.com> wrote:
>>It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least to
>>humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.
>
>Yes, but "cat-vacuuming" sounds better than "waxing the cat". Hence
>the instant popularity of the former phrase. Besides, while the humans
>may think that vacuuming the cat would be useful, with 99.9% of cats
>it would be impossible.
>
General Cat Principles suggest there might be even more truth in that
last sentence if you replaced 'while' with 'because'...


Cheers,

--
Gray

http://www.quilpole.demon.co.uk

"She does not get eaten by the sharks at this time."
- William Goldman, _The Princess Bride_.

Mark Brown

unread,
Nov 26, 2001, 7:21:35 PM11/26/01
to
> On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 15:02:05 GMT, ada...@tin.it (Anna Feruglio Dal
> Dan) wrote:
*SNIP*

> >When I went to pick up mine at the shelter, there was a handsome, sleek
> >white cat in a cage in the back, inside the big kitten's enclosure. I
> >looked at it and he flattened the ears and hissed silently. I've never
> >seen a more menacing creature in my life.
*SNIP*

I think I just found a new character for the WIP!

Seriously.

Mark
"He sounds like a perfect Tough Guy(tm) bounty hunter. . ."


Marilee J. Layman

unread,
Nov 27, 2001, 1:53:48 AM11/27/01
to
On Fri, 23 Nov 2001 10:15:09 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
<mjla...@erols.com> wrote:

>On Fri, 23 Nov 2001 01:00:07 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
><mjla...@erols.com> wrote:
>
>>On Thu, 22 Nov 2001 09:37:48 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
>><mjla...@erols.com> wrote:
>>
>>>And right now, I have a cat outside yelling at the front door. He
>>>woke us up at 4:30am. I don't recognize him, and he looks like a pet.
>>>I don't know how he figured out there's cats here in the middle of the
>>>night.
>>
>>The poor kitty is still out there, still yelling. I put out food and
>>water earlier, but I hesitate to take in a cat I don't know.
>
>And indeed, still yelling. The cats have all talked to him through
>the window now, and they must be saying how good they have it here.

I asked my neighbor who tracks the cat population and he's an
abandoned pet. The vet says she thinks he'll fit in with mine, he's
not a dominant cat, so I prepared the guest bathroom for isolation
yesterday. Tonight he was back yelling again, so I brought him in and
isolated him. I sat in with him for a while and while he wanted to go
out, he was also interested in what was around him. I went back in to
check on him a few minutes ago and as soon as I sat on the toilet, he
climbed into my arms, headbutted me, and started to purr. Every time
he moved, I thought he would want down, but no, he just wanted a
different position to purr from.

The other cats are interested, Spirit has been talking to him through
the door and trying to put her paw under. Helen comes to check him
out and neuter, treat, vaccinate, whatever, tomorrow evening.

Margaret Young

unread,
Nov 27, 2001, 6:49:53 AM11/27/01
to
On Tue, 27 Nov 2001 01:53:48 -0500, Marilee J. Layman
<mjla...@erols.com> wrote:

Sounds like he has really missed having a person.

>
>The other cats are interested, Spirit has been talking to him through
>the door and trying to put her paw under. Helen comes to check him
>out and neuter, treat, vaccinate, whatever, tomorrow evening.

Best to all of you.


Margaret
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Come the apocalypse there will be cockroaches, Keith Richards and the
faint smell of cat pee.


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Manny Olds

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Nov 27, 2001, 7:29:45 AM11/27/01
to
Marilee J. Layman <mjla...@erols.com> wrote:
> I asked my neighbor who tracks the cat population and he's an
> abandoned pet.

Every time we save a "used pet", I get a sick moment thinking of all the
strays and outcasts who don't find the right window.

We just got discovered by Skipper, an elderly Shepherd/Husky mix who is deaf
and has poor bladder control, sever dysplacia (but no pain), and who is a
barker. Excellent health except for the hips and the worms. Sweet as can be
and excellent leash manners. Keeps looking for the dog door we don't have,
though, and doesn't signal when he needs to go out.

Anyone have any ideas for teaching an old (deaf) dog a new trick?

--
Manny Olds, (old...@pobox.com) of Riverdale Park, Maryland, USA

"And there is always the zen pleasure of the project that no one in their
right mind would ever undertake... " -- LAW (Leigh Witchel)


Patricia J. Hawkins

unread,
Nov 27, 2001, 12:53:30 PM11/27/01
to
>>>>> "JWH" == Jonathan W Hendry <j_he...@ix.netcom.com> writes:

JWH> "David Goldfarb" <gold...@OCF.Berkeley.EDU> wrote in message
JWH> news:9tsfgs$148v$1...@agate.berkeley.edu...


>> In article <3C01362B...@erols.com>,
>> Brenda W. Clough <clo...@erols.com> wrote:
>> >It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least

JWH> to


>> >humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.
>>
>> Yes, but "cat-vacuuming" sounds better than "waxing the cat". Hence
>> the instant popularity of the former phrase. Besides, while the humans
>> may think that vacuuming the cat would be useful, with 99.9% of cats
>> it would be impossible.

JWH> Plus,'wax' is sometimes used in a sense that means 'terminate' or 'kill'.

and also grow or increase.

EG: I waxed the cat. The cat waxed.

--
Patricia J. Hawkins

Dorothy J Heydt

unread,
Nov 27, 2001, 1:40:33 PM11/27/01
to
In article <wky9ksh...@mail.connact.com>,

Patricia J. Hawkins <phaw...@connact.com> wrote:
>
>JWH> Plus,'wax' is sometimes used in a sense that means 'terminate' or 'kill'.
>
>and also grow or increase.
>
>EG: I waxed the cat. The cat waxed.

More likely, the cat waxed wroth.

(for those not familiar with the archaism, it means "the cat grew
VERY ANGRY.")

Charlie Stross

unread,
Nov 28, 2001, 7:04:28 PM11/28/01
to
Stoned koala bears drooled eucalyptus spittle in awe
as <clo...@erols.com> declared:

> It is obvious though that vacuuming a cat might possibly be useful, at least to
> humans. Whereas waxing the cat will annoy everybody, the cat included.

Not invariably true: I own (am owned by) a self-waxing cat.

(My partner has dreadlocks. These require periodic waxing with
beeswax. When she's just waxed them, our cat will come along in the
night and attempt to nest in her hair, rolling in it and generally
acting like a total slut. It's a most disturbing way to be woken up.)

-- Charlie

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