Taking Down the Christmas Tree

January 25, 2021

By Karen

Yes, it’s true. The Christmas tree was so much work to put up — and it was Tony’s first one — that it stayed up until this past weekend. But I learned that one downside to keeping a tree up nearly two months is that the cats accept it as a permanent fixture in their world…

Deconstruction was a two-stage process. Saturday afternoon, I did the ornaments. The cats barely noticed, even though they’ve been batting around the ones at the bottom.

EVERY year, there’s this one ornament I can never find. This time I even poked through the branches with a flashlight and couldn’t see it…

Looks just like Roc, which explains why it’s a troublemaker.

I’ve finally learned not to put the ornaments back in the closet until this perennial stray turns up.

My cat ornaments don’t just get thrown in boxes, because many are fragile and have moving parts. Each one has its own box or bag for cushioning. So if I have any bags left over when I think I’m finished, I know I’ve missed something…

“Hmm… Everything seems to be in order here.”

Saturday night, we lit the unadorned tree one last time and all the kitties took turns hanging out under it, even Max.

Sunday morning, I started on the white iridescent garland. That’s when everybody realized I was attacking “their” tree and things got ugly. While I was circling the tree undoing the garland, Tony from his nearby perch hooked my hand good, sending me screaming to the bathroom for Neosporin and a Band-Aid.

But he only delayed me until I could stop the bleeding. Next, he threw himself full-length on the garland…

“You’re gonna have to take this out of my cold, dead paws.”

This strategy proved more effective. Now all I could do was pull the garland down and let it drop in a heap on the floor around the tree because I couldn’t remove it one strand at a time. This is where Roc joined in…

“Let’s see if I can tangle it up even more!”

Now all that was left were the lights. Max disapprovingly supervised that step from the mantel…

“You know I take a dim view of everything you’re doing, right?”

Martha Stewart probably has some incredible way to store Christmas lights, but I can only wrap a strand thumb to elbow and then secure each end of the coil with twist ties. Even that doesn’t stop them from being a tangled mess next time.

Tony got more frantic when the tree itself started shrinking. He planted himself underneath so I could see his distress…

“Please, please, PLEASE don’t take away my tree!”

He literally got in my face as I removed the last layer of branches…

“Either the tree stays, or I GO! No, wait…or YOU go! No, wait, you open the cans. How about, we ALL stay!”

Finally, it was down, the branches sorted into bags and stuffed back in their box. All that remained was vacuuming. Tony seemed to be wondering if it had all been a dream…

“I sure hope there are some Christmas treats left so I can eat my feelings.”

With the furniture back in place, it already feels like Christmas never happened. I’m sure if I decide to put the tree up again in December, the cats’ delight will be as fresh as ever. That’s the genius of being a cat — none of the work, all of the fun.

Adjusting to Normal Feeling Normal Again

January 21, 2021

By Karen

It only took 25,000 National Guard troops to ensure that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ inauguration went off without a hitch. No one got beaten with an American flagpole in the name of “patriotism.” No doors were smashed. No one got shot. As far as we know, no one peed or took a shit in any corner of the Capitol.

Trump, his skanky spawn and Melania enjoyed their last Air Force One flight to Mar-a-Lago. Before he left D.C., Trump ordered Secret Service protection costing millions to be extended for another six months to his four worthless adult children and their spouses, even though only Melania and Barron are entitled to it by law.

Photo: Getty Images

Trump’s that guy who dumps the whole bowl of mints at a restaurant’s register into his pocket as he leaves. Billionaire, my ass. He’s robbing taxpayers for every last penny he can grab.

Trump had delusional fans dancing in the streets to welcome him in Florida, which he totally appreciated. We’ll see how long his neighbors put up with that.

But what goes around is coming around. Trump did everything he could to wipe out every shred of progress Obama had accomplished by reversing, repealing or bastardizing it.

Now Trump gets to see what that feels like.

Biden went right to work with a high stack of executive orders to sign.

Photo: Politico

He put a stop to the stupid wall, got us back into the Paris climate accord, canned the 1776 Commission whose purpose was to promote more racist-friendly history of our county, canceled the Keystone pipeline, kept us in the World Health Organization and lifted the Muslim travel ban, to name just a few.

Meanwhile, the riots Trump’s mob threatened in all 50 states failed to materialize. Now that Trump is unable to vent, lie and incite the cult to violence on social media, it’s a beast with no head.

Once the proud boys see the most prominent Capitol rioters go on trial and get the prison sentences they’ve earned, any incentive to continue fighting to install now-toothless, impotent Trump as dictator should evaporate.

We’ll still have racists and seditionists, but without Trump to personify their ignorance, they can either come over to the light or find themselves shunned back under the rocks they crawled out from. It’s no longer fashionable to be stupid and hateful.

Hopefully, Biden’s determination to undo Trump’s damage as quickly and efficiently as possible will have a trickle-down effect, and the Trump elements now permeating and sabotaging our government will be flushed out soon.

BONUS: Stephen Colbert presented Melania’s swan song (brilliantly performed by Laura Benanti)…

DOUBLE BONUS: This song from Rent may be Randy Rainbow’s final, bittersweet, parody of the Trumpian nightmare…

TRIPLE BONUS: If you missed 22-year-old Amanda Gorman, the country’s first National Youth Poet Laureate, reciting her poem, “The Hill We Climb,” at the inauguration, watch this. Her talent is beyond incredible…

In Two More Days, the Nightmare Ends

January 18, 2021

By Karen

I have a feeling I’ll be on a crying jag Wednesday (January 20) — with joy and relief — watching Joe Biden and Kamala Harris sworn in as president and vice president of the United States.

At that moment, it becomes open season on Donald Trump, Mike Pence and anyone who enabled their racist, corrupt reign of terror.

Time to stick a pin in it. He’s finished.

Trump isn’t leaving Washington until the morning of Biden’s big day. Because…

  • Trump wants to seize at least some of the day’s headlines; it’s always all about him.
  • Trump’s incapable of behaving like an adult.
  • Trump thinks he’s entitled to a hero’s send-off, one week after his record-breaking second impeachment.

That’s right. Trump expects a color guard, a military band, a red carpet and a 21-gun salute.

I think a lot of taxpayers would be OK with the 21-gun salute — if Trump wore a blindfold and the bullets weren’t being shot into the air.

Like the pair of surly little bitches they are, Donald and Melania will not extend the same civility and kindness the Obamas showed them on Inauguration Day. They will NOT welcome the Bidens into the White House, nor accompany them to the inauguration.

No one will be surprised if Trump spends his final morning defacing the White House like his cult did the Capitol. Instead of leaving the customary note outgoing presidents leave for their successor, Biden may find a pile of Trump’s shit in the Resolute Desk.

Trump wouldn’t be above leaving water marks from wet Diet Coke cans all over the famous desk, a gift from Queen Victoria, or even gouging his name into it, just to remind Biden he’d been there.

Trump’s thinking is so spitefully immature, there’s no telling how he’ll act out. But he will do something demented and disgusting, mark my words.

As more horrific video comes out of the crazed mob Trump urged to attack the Capitol, many of the rioters are going on public record declaring they absolutely did it on Trump’s orders.

They stupidly think relaying this to Trump via the media (since they can’t tweet or Facebook him) is going to earn them nice pardons. They never learn.

Actually, they’re driving big nails into Trump’s coffin. “He made me do it” excuses will be used to validate his incitement to insurrection. This boosts his chances the Senate will vote convict him this time AND prohibit him from ever holding public office again.

And as of 12:01 on Wednesday, criminal charges could follow.

To see Trump ultimately crushed under the filthy, stinking boots of the ignorant MAGA mob HE created would be fitting as his political career ends and financial ruin, convictions and likely prison sentences begin.

In the end, it won’t matter. Biden will be president and able to rout out the corrupt saboteurs Trump planted in the government. Biden will mend fences with our allies and get us back into the globally vital treaties Trump couldn’t begin to comprehend, much less honor.

Fueled by national outrage and a need to see some justice at last, the FBI will continue arresting and charging Trump’s MAGA cultists.

Some of them already realize Trump threw them under the bus in his final little speech, abhorring the violence and acknowledging a new administration. Those desperate to cling to the last shred of crazy interpreted Trump as saying the new administration would be HIS come January 20, only with new faces because he’s cleaning house yet again.

Sure, whatever, you morons. On Wednesday, Trump is out. And like the Confederacy he so dearly loves, Trump will never rise again.


THIS JUST IN: The Trump Baby Blimp has just been acquired by the Museum of London.

McConnell Coddles Trump to the End

January 14, 2021

By Karen

But before I get political, I’ve got a BIG ANNOUNCEMENT.

Cats Working reader Tracy is appearing on HGTV Friday, January 15, at 11:30 a.m. EST, in the pilot episode of Reno Italiano

Tracy and her husband Matt bought a centuries-old house in Italy that’s been abandoned for 60 years. On the show, an Italian construction team comes in and renovates it for them, and the results are a surprise. They are planning to leave the U.S. and live there.

It’s a popular format in home improvement TV. My favorite guy for that is Mike Holmes, who looks like Canadian Mr. Clean. I wish he could give my house a makeover. He’d tear it down to the studs and start over.

Tune in or set your DVR to watch Reno Italiano. If it attracts enough viewers, a whole series is a go.

Now, as for Trump…

So yesterday Trump got himself impeached for the second time. A fat lot of good it does, because Mitch McConnell is determined to hang onto his last shred of power by refusing to convene the Senate trial that could immediately convict and remove Trump. He wrote it couldn’t possibly be “fair or serious” if rushed.

It’s not like the whole world witnessed Trump on national TV inciting the riot or anything.

McConnell also coyly leaked that he might be “pleased” about this impeachment and would like to hear the legal arguments (as if he doesn’t recognize sedition. McDonnell might even possibly think about maybe considering a vote for conviction.

Apparently, Trump made a little nicey-nicey speech, claiming he never wanted violence and he wasn’t jerking off to the TV while he watched the riot “fight for him” at the Capitol last week.

I didn’t see it. We all know he’s lying and he’ll say anything as the prison walls close in.

But if there’s any report of Trump’s cultists rioting ANYWHERE before Biden’s inauguration, McConnell and Mike Pence need to be arrested tried for treason for aiding and abetting the certified insurrectionist in the White House.

Meanwhile, the Republican Party is in tatters, split between those who think Trump’s cult went too far or didn’t go far enough. The latter faction is culling its own herd as the FBI rounds them up to face criminal charges.

Since Trump knows he faces no immediate consequences for trying to kill Congress, and he’s said he won’t attend the inauguration, the only unknown now is where he’ll hole up until the subpoenas and indictments and canceled business contracts start rolling in. Presumably Mar-a-Lago.

On the cat front…

I’m being stalked by Roc’s Fuglen the Bird and Tony’s Yellow Sparkle Ball (which he just rediscovered under that pile of tatty brown paper he likes to play in). If I spend any time in any room, I find both of them lurking nearby…

While I was taking that pic, Tony couldn’t resist a photobomb…

Sometimes he also brings me his Christmas Miracle Froggy, which has already lost both eyes and one leg.

Roc says “Hi” from his spot on the printer…

And Max has finally recovered fully and is back to his usual state of perpetual annoyance…

I’m trying to help Max kick his new Gerber baby food habit, but he’s still showing up every morning and evening for a fix. Now that he’s taken the full 14-day course of meds I was sneaking into it, it’s a pricey vice at $1.19 a jar (how to people afford to feed babies?). Max now also has a fondness for snuggling up to a hot water bottle. I can still indulge him in that (that green towel behind him is his bottle).

BONUS: Since my Twitter feed is suspended, I was a little late finding Randy Rainbow’s latest, “Sedition”…

For the record, when Randy refers to reusing the song, this is what he’s talking about. It’s from May 2020, about Trump’s response to COVID…

Why Trump is Still in the White House

January 11, 2021

By Karen

I can explain why in two words: Mike Pence.

Last Wednesday, January 6, 2021, will be remembered along with Pearl Harbor Day and 9/11 not because it caused a staggering death toll, but because the United States came face to face with a terrifying monster inside the house.


A crazed, predominantly white, mob, whipped into a seditious frenzy AT THE WHITE HOUSE by Donald Trump, erected a gallows outside the U.S. Capitol…

Photo: thesun.co.uk

Then they stormed the building screaming “Hang Mike Pence!” among other things. Some came with zip ties for binding hands and feet. Whose? Their hostages? Prisoners they’d condemn on the spot to hang? They wandered through the Senate Chamber where Pence would have been, had there been no time to hide him…

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty

The clown above in the helmet holding zip ties is retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Larry Rendall Brock from Texas. He was identified from photos by his ex-wife, arrested and charged.

Brock claimed to journalist Ronan Farrow that he found the zip ties on the floor and meant to give them to police, but shoved them in his pocket and “forgot.”

The FBI, aided by armchair detectives on social media, seems to be doing a fair job with IDs and arrests. For instance, they’ve nabbed Jake Angeli of Arizona, the shirtless guy in the furry horned headdress…

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP – Getty

And Richard Barnett of Arkansas, the one with his feet up on a desk in Nancy Pelosi’s office…

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP – Getty

Every day seems to produce more horrifying video of the violence, including the point-blank shooting by Capitol police of a female rioter trying to break through a door, and of rioters dragging, swarming and beating with flagpoles an officer on the steps outside.

Yet Pence and his dwindling band of gutless treason-weasels in Trump’s Cabinet (including Ben Carson, Wilbur Ross, Mike Pompeo, Steve Mnuchin, Mark Meadows et al.) STILL won’t invoke the 25th Amendment.

Pence’s has said he might consider the 25th if Trump becomes “more unstable.”

What the hell might that look like? Trump running naked through the Rose Garden, pounding the button to launch the nukes?

Nancy Pelosi is moving ahead today with one article of impeachment, “Incitement to insurrection.”

This came after a resolution from the House that tried to compel Pence to invoke the 25th got shot down in the Senate. After having all THEIR lives endangered by Trump last week, Mitch McConnell and his gang of traitors are still protecting him.

Or perhaps it’s because the resolution cited the Constitution’s 14th Amendment, which “prohibits any person who has ‘engaged in insurrection or rebellion against’ the United States” from holding office.

If they threw Trump out on that, Senators Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz and the others who supported the insurrection by continuing afterwards to vote against Biden’s certification would have to go next.

Trump only has nine days left. Thankfully, his ability to create chaos has FINALLY been crippled by being cut off from all his favorite social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter).

Amazon checkmated him by refusing to continue hosting Parler. Parler has evolved into an extreme right-wing forum where Trump’s cult planned a lot of the insurrection. After losing Twitter, Trump presumably intended to anoint himself king of Parler, but it’s got only a tiny fraction of the reach he had.

And since Google and Apple have removed the Parler app from their stores, new users can’t download it, so it seems doomed to remain fringey.

In a nutshell, I see these as the compelling reasons to boot Trump out NOW:

  1. To keep him from pardoning himself, his family, his criminal cronies and ALL the Capitol rioters.
  2. To prohibit Trump from running for or holding elected office. In addition to making the world safer, he’d have no reason to ever hold another stupid rally. AND it would end his stealing from his gullible cult because he could have no campaign fund.
  3. To make him a private citizen so state and federal prosecutors can proceed with all the indictments and lawsuits they’ve been working on.
  4. To begin fumigating the White House.

The country does need to move on. But it can’t heal until Donald Trump has no power, no money and no effective means of communication to spread his poison to anyone stupid enough to listen to him.

Gee, Has Trump Finally Gone Too Far?

January 7, 2021

By Karen

To anybody with an iota of decency, the answer is definitely YES, but a fat lot of good it does because Trump’s toast in two weeks anyway. I have no doubt Congress will use his short-timer status as an excuse to do nothing, even though Trump personally endangered every one of them yesterday by whipping his crazed MAGA mob into storming the U.S. Capitol.

Even doing that, Trump couldn’t not lie. When he stood before the rioters basking in his Mussolini moment, he said, “We’re going to walk down, and I’ll be there with you,” according to the Washington Post.

Actually, he abandoned them to sit on his fat diapered ass in the comfy White House to gloat and watch his rabble of rubes swarm the Capitol like so many plague-carrying rats…

Photo Fort Worth Star-Telegraph

In addition to killing 371,000 (and counting) with COVID, yesterday Trump added four more to his body count: one supporter shot and killed inside the building, and three others who died elsewhere in the excitement. Fourteen police officers were injured, two seriously, according to the Wall Street Journal.

I want to set the record straight about one thing, because I’ve seen the media screwing this up big-time. Even Biden wussed out and got it wrong, saying about the riot, “It’s disorder. It’s chaos. It borders on sedition and it must end now.”

Trump was the one who committed sedition beyond a doubt by instigating the riot. The people who obeyed his orders didn’t “border” on anything. They committed insurrection. On camera. For the world to see.

While I’m ranting on weasel words, Trump didn’t create a “demonstration” or a “protest.” He fomented insurrection by a mob hell-bent on destroying the government to install Trump as a dictator. It’s also known as a “coup.”

The perpetrators weren’t “dissatisfied voters,” “protesters” or “demonstrators.” They were trespassers, vandals, assailants who intended to criminally assault (or kill) members of Congress, and let me not omit — traitors.

On the tame end of the spectrum, many disfigured the American flag by plastering Trump’s clown face across our Stars and Stripes, a crime in itself…

18 USC 700: Desecration of the flag of the United States; penalties:

(a)(1) Whoever knowingly mutilates, defaces, physically defiles, burns, maintains on the floor or ground, or tramples upon any flag of the United States shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

More seriously, once inside the building, they broke windows, ransacked offices, stole property, and defaced walls with rebellious graffiti.

While Trump knew his vice president was cowering in the bowels of the Capitol trying not to get attacked, Trump made a short video to squirt even more gasoline on the raging blaze…

After the Capitol was finally secured at about 8 p.m., Congress reconvened to continue their election certification vote. I watched six Republican senators affirm their objections (seven chickened out) and essentially pledge their allegiance to the rioters. That’s when I went to bed in disgust. Today I’m unable to find how many House members followed suit, but some did and were out-voted.

After all that, Biden is definitely our next president.

Any Congress member who objected violated the oath they swore to the Constitution. Period. Expelling them from Congress should be a no-brainer, but we know how that goes. Chickenshit leadership will denounce it, then say voters should “clean up” that mess come reelection time.

As I’m writing this, if Pence and the Cabinet had a ball among them, they’d have invoked the 25th Amendment and removed Trump today. He’s unable to perform his duties because he’s buried them under his own shit.

But, of course, no one’s done a damn thing.

The toughest punishment Trump has faced is that Twitter suspended him for 12 hours for “inciting violence” and deleted several of his incendiary tweets.

Let me put that in perspective. I once got myself suspended for 12 hours for an insulting tweet about Sarah Huckabee Sanders that I can’t even remember.

BUT: Twitter may have banned Cats Working permanently* from Twitter on Christmas Eve because I wished Trump the gift of tar and feathers. Twitter’s reason: I also was “inciting violence.”

My tweet was viewed 138 times and resulted in nothing.

Trump’s tweets successfully motivated thousands of violent zealots to storm the U.S. Capitol and got one of them shot to death.

Yeah, it’s exactly the same thing.

If you voted for Donald Trump in November, and you still don’t believe he LOST the election by 7 million votes, whether you were in D.C. yesterday or not, consider yourself one of that mob.

*I don’t know my Twitter status because Twitter used the word “suspended,” which implies a temporary situation, rather than “banned,” “terminated,” or “expelled.” My account still exists, although frozen as of December 24, stripped of followings and followers, and rendered useless. I can’t even delete the guilty tweet. Only time will tell.

Our Definition of Treason Needs Updating

January 4, 2021

By Karen

As Trump and his Republican toadies try to overthrow Joe Biden’s legal election (by a 7 million popular vote majority and a 74 vote Electoral College majority) it feels to anyone who isn’t a brain-dead Trumpist as if we’re seeing treason in action. Here’s a straightforward explanation of treason…

Here’s treason explained at CriminalDefenseLawyer.com in the U.S. Constitution, Article III, Section 3…

“…shall consist only in levying War against them [the U.S.], or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.”

It goes on to say…

“Article III, Section 3 authorizes Congress to set the penalties for treason, but not to change the definition or create degrees of treason. The federal treason statute, 18 U.S.C. § 2381, mirrors the Constitution’s language and imposes minimum penalties of five years’ imprisonment and a $10,000 fine. A conviction bars the defendant from holding any federal office and carries the possibility of the death penalty.”

So, Trump’s unexplained and constant devotion to giving aid and comfort to Russia isn’t considered treason because the United States has not declared war on Russia, and Congress isn’t authorized by the Constitution to call out Trump’s treasonous behavior because it doesn’t fit the definition by a hair.

Republican members of Congress enabling Trump also can’t be charged with treason for essentially declaring war on the United States government — making THEM our “enemies” — because we didn’t first declare war on THEM.

Trump and his traitorous scum in Congress are engaging in a coup. They would install Trump as dictator for life over 81 million Americans who voted against him. I say “for life” because elections would become meaningless. From now on, it would be whatever Trump wants.

And we seem to have no laws against this, or anyone willing to enforce ANY legal means we might still have to stop it.

But what about sedition? It’s not in the Constitution, but we did have the federal Sedition Act of 1918, which USLegal.com defined as…

“…the federal crime of advocacy of uprising or overthrow against the government or support for an enemy of the nation during time of war, by speeches, publications and organization. Sedition usually involves actually conspiring to disrupt the legal operation of the government and is beyond expression of an opinion or protesting government policy. Sedition is distinguished from treason, which requires actual betrayal of the government, or ‘espionage.’”

The Sedition Act was repealed in 1920 because it existed only to beef up The Espionage Act of 1917, which “prohibited obtaining information, recording pictures, or copying descriptions of any information relating to the national defense with intent or reason to believe that the information may be used for the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation.”

Both acts were passed specifically to protect U.S. military efforts during World War I. Punishments included “a fine of not more than $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than twenty years, or both.”

The convenient loophole in sedition is that people usually get away with it because courts rule they have a First Amendment right to free speech against the government.

So, let’s just chalk up the concept of sedition to a Catch-22 clusterfuck that doesn’t help now.

What we know is that Trump and his enablers are self-declared enemies of the U.S. government. They’re openly violating oaths they swore to uphold the Constitution. They’re gleefully committing treason AND sedition without consequences because they’re doing it of their own free will from the inside, not as helpers of foreign adversaries trying to bring down our government.

That is beyond fucked up.

Trump is openly calling for mob violence in Washington, D.C., on January 6, urging his armed MAGA zombies to descend on the city en masse and do their worst, just to show him how much they love him. This alone would get him arrested if we weren’t treating him like a deity.

Bottom line is that Joe Biden becomes president on January 20. Trump’s direct power over us ends. As Biden and Harris begin to repair the monumental mess Trump leaves and purge the government of the incompetent garbage people he’s infested it with, his whiny voice and orange clown face will fade as criminal indictments and civil lawsuits bury him so deep, all he’ll care about is staying out of prison.

In the meantime, the damage he and Republicans traitors in Congress are inflicting on this country are unimaginable and should never be forgotten — certainly never rewarded with reelection.

If Congress had even half a ball or one iota of integrity, every one among their ranks who participates in this travesty would be immediately expelled.

PS CAT UPDATE: Tony and Max are still stuffy but sneezing much less. Max is now addicted to Gerber baby food with a two-jar-a-day habit, which we’ll indulge as long as he lets me sneak his meds into it. Roc is totally recovered.

Chapter 143: COVID Chronicles

December 31, 2020

By Karen

Day 292

Cat Pandemic Update & Happy New Year!

Roc came through two bouts of the sniffles a week apart and bounced back to normal, with only the occasional sneeze.

Tony is also a lot better. He laid low for a couple of days, but he’s no longer letting his stuffy nose get him down. He’s still got sniffles, but he’s eating well and doing his usual things, which include Roc-wrestling.

In fact, I was just trying to do a mobile bank deposit on my iPhone when Tony jumped on the desk and sneezed, spraying me, the checks I was depositing and my checkbook with cat spit.

Poor Max still has severe congestion. Because the long holiday weekend is coming, I got him in to the vet yesterday.

The good news is that Max doesn’t have a fever and his lungs are clear, so no pneumonia. The bad news is that he doesn’t want to eat anything but Temptations treats and bonito flakes, which are the stinky fish equivalent of potato chips. So, not a nutritious diet.

He got a fluid injection for dehydration and a shot of antibiotics, just in case there’s any underlying bacterial infection.

The vet prescribed some expensive eye goop twice a day; I don’t know why. And she gave me 14 days of an immune-boosting powder in case it’s the herpes virus I suspect. The vet didn’t commit to a definitive diagnosis.

Max is a dry-food-only guy, so slipping him a powder is a fool’s errand. The vet knows this.

This morning I did get about 2/3 of a jar of Gerber turkey baby food into him — miracle of miracles, he licked it off the spoon. So, the powder goes in there tonight. With fingers crossed, I ran to Food Lion to stock up on Gerber.

Max is resting in the Max Cave with the humidifier and a space heater keeping it a little steamy, which he enjoys.

Luckily, I had planned to take this week off because I haven’t had a break all year. But I didn’t know I’d end up spending it as a cat nurse.

To top it off, as Max and I were driving to the vet, the “Service Engine Soon” light popped up on the Saturn. The last time I saw that particular light, squirrels had gnawed through my fuel line.

And this morning, I discovered a bottle of Clorox Cleanup under the Man Cave Café sink had leaked. Now I have smears of hardened bleach stuck all over the shelf that don’t dissolve in water, so that’s another mess to figure out.

It’s always something, right?

This week’s drama has left no room for listening to Trump’s last gasps, which has been a blessing.

The cats and I wish everyone a happier and healthier new year. I can’t imagine how 2020 could have been any worse, short of nuclear war.

Chapter 142: COVID Chronicles

December 28, 2020

By Karen

Day 289

We’ve Got a Pandemic Within a Pandemic

Max and I have been sneezing for weeks, and I chalked it up to the change in season and house dust in general. Neither of us felt sick, and lately Max’s sneezing had cleared up.

I told you how last weekend Roc came down with the sniffles right before Christmas again, just as he did when he was a kitten. Since he spends a fair amount of time hanging out with Max, it made me suspect that an old virus had come back to haunt.

Many years ago, the original gang of Fred, Yul and Adele somehow managed to catch an upper respiratory bug they passed to each other. The vet told me it was a herpes virus. Adele must have given it to Roc his first Christmas, and then Roc to Max (because Max and Adele were never physically close or shared anything beyond mutual dislike).

Anyway, Roc was stuffy and felt like crap for a couple of days, but quickly bounced back and we all had a merry Christmas with ‘nip and the works. I thought all was well.

But Saturday afternoon, Tony started sneezing and drooling and was so miserable he actually sat on my lap for a good while.

Within a few hours, Max and Roc were both sneezing their heads off again, although Roc seemed to take it in stride and stayed in good spirits.

Tony just spent a miserable weekend, with the worst stuffy nose of all, which affected his appetite. He did lick the gravy off some Friskies Shreds. And I happened to have a slab of extremely rare, bloody roast beef from my parents’ Christmas dinner that has been his main source of solid food.

With everyone still sniffling and sneezing this morning, I turned the Man Cave into a pandemic ward with a humidifier to ease their breathing and hot water bottles for their cat beds.

Naturally, when I turned on the humidifier, the noise freaked them out and they refused to go in the room.

So, I settled on the sofa in there with my coffee, between cat beds, reading Obama’s book on my iPad. Soon, they all trooped in and claimed a bed…

Max’s face should be a Christmas ‘nip hangover instead of a stuffy nose.
Roc’s had a little relapse.

Max and Roc were happy to be tucked in under blankies for some nice toasty rest. Tony isn’t coverable, so he napped a while, then had to explore. First, he checked out the humidifier…

“If this is supposed to be a kitty fountain, it sucks.”

Then he joined the rest of us on the sofa. Under normal circumstances, Tony standing on Roc would have started a wrestling match, so you know the Rocster’s not feeling 100%….

“Kid, I could sure use one of your famous pushy-pushy massages while you’re up there.”

We just have to power through this until they’re all back to their feisty little selves. Even though he’s still sniffling, I can tell Tony feels better by the comfy way he’s sacked out on the floor beside me right now with old Red Doggie that Yul used for a pillow whenever he was under the weather…

Tony not sleeping in meatloaf position is a very positive sign.

BONUS: Christmas morning, Tony thought Santa Kitty pulled off a Christmas miracle by making Tony’s favorite froggy on a stick regrow eyes and legs…

“Yikes! Froggy was nothing but a green lump yesterday!”

And here’s a little clip of Tony enjoying birds on Video Catnip, while Roc remembers Christmas 2015 when he was a gullible kitten who thought TV birds were real…

Merry Christmas From the Cats

December 24, 2020

By Tony, Roc and Max

Tony here…

Max tells me Karen’s Christmas wish is always to get a picture of all us kitties dancing around merrily in Santa hats like Rockettes. It’s nuts but, as Max wisely observes, Karen’s hope springs eternal.

Me? I don’t really get the concept of “hat.” I’ve already got ears up there, so what else do I need? This morning when Karen came at me with this furry red thing and tried stuff my head in it, I fought back like any potential kidnapping victim. This is as close as I let that thing get…

“This perch is NOT big enough for the both of us!”

I’ll let Roc take it from here…

I was lounging in the bedroom when I heard commotion in the living room. Karen was pleading with Tony, “Wear it for just one second.” I suspected what was going on, because whenever she puts a big tree in the house she gets a little crazy. But I know how Karen’s “seconds” can drag into whole photo shoots. And I’m not a big fan of hats, either.

Then I heard her footsteps in the hall. Yup, she was coming for me with that damn hat. Tony dashed ahead of her and tried to warn me to hide under the bed, but he barely got the words out before she’d thrown that Santa hat on MY head!…

“Roc, don’t do it!” For all you know, it’s full of FLEAS!”

Since I’ve been to this rodeo a few times before, and Karen WAS nice to me when I was feeling poorly last weekend, I decided it wouldn’t hurt to cooperate a little

“You’ve heard of Elf on the Shelf? This is Cat Under the Hat.”

But Karen can be greedy. She wasn’t satisfied with my picture alone and headed upstairs after Max. As usual, he was hanging out in the Man Cave and clueless that he was about to become her next victim.

Tony always races Karen up the stairs (and wins). When she encountered him on the perch at the top, she foolishly tried getting him to wear the hat again….

“I think this creepy fuzzball is stalking me.”

As you can see, Tony was still not in the mood. Max wants to tell you what happened next…

Being the most experienced kitty here, Karen has tried to rope me into this Santa hat gig more than Tony and Roc combined. But it’s Christmas and Santa Kitty keeps track of who’s naughty or nice, so I decided to score some nice points and humor Karen for once. First, she tried a jaunty side look, but that didn’t quite cut it…

“I think this would be more flattering in a French beret.”

Now, if I must say so myself (and I must, because Roc and Tony NEVER cut me any slack), Karen’s next attempt — paired with my soulful pose —captured Christmas spirit perfectly while showcasing my Cary Grant-like profile, don’t you think?…

“Who needs Omar Sharif? I could totally star in ‘Dr. Zhivago.'”

Now cocky from her spectacular success with me, when Karen found Roc staked out on top of her printer, she decided to give him one last shot at doing better…

“Maybe I’d let Roc be one of the peasant extras in ‘Dr. Zhivago.'”

Meanwhile, Tony was bopping around the office. Karen knew by now that the hat was no-go, but we didn’t realize Tony’s antsy about Santa Kitty coming down the chimney tonight. I guess Roc and I shouldn’t have been filling his ears with so many stories of Santa Kitty scooping up bad kitties in his litter box sleigh to take to the North Pole to be the reindeers’ love muffins. Tony looked so nervous, even the flamingos were laughing at him behind his back…

“I wonder if Santa Kitty could find me under Karen’s desk?

Rest assured, we’ll set the little guy straight before bedtime so he gets a good night’s sleep and can enjoy toys, treats and our annual viewing of Video Catnip in the morning.

Cats Working wishes all our readers who have stuck with us through this horrible year a Safe and Merry Christmas, and we hope Santa Kitty is good to you and yours.

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