Monday, August 28, 2006

The Curious Incidents of the Cat in the Nighttime

I wasn't really sure what it was, at first. All I knew what that for some reason, I would jerk awake in the middle of the night. I would sit up in bed, confused as to what had awakened me, and then finally, lay back down and get to sleep.

Some nights I even suspected Sweet Baboo of doing something, for fun, but not for long.

In any case, it was finally clear to me on a particularly warm evening when I was lying awake, waiting to fall back asleep

and it happened.


That's the imaginary sound I've given to what one--I don't know which one--of my four cats does in the middle of the night, although usually it's just a loud thud that knocks me out of dreamland. She (they're all females) leaps from the top of the headboard, which is about 3 feet above my head, down onto my torso. However, she does this in such a way as to immediatley spring back off and away. This means she lands with a lot of force, using my body as a sort of trampoline. Which is why I couldn't figure out what had happened, at first, because the culprit was long gone, having sailed away by the time I sat bolt upright in bed. I had become some sort of kitty springboard, not unlike these things I used to jump off when doing vault gymnastics.

It started happening often enough to piss me off, but then it would stop for a while. It only happens when I'm lying on my back. It never happens to Sweet Baboo, despite his providing a larger target.

The worst was the night after my endometrial ablation


On this night, the tragectory was changed just enought so that kitty landed on my abdomen instead of the usual mid chest region.

Of course, by the time I'm out of bed, swearing and yelling MOTHER F$$&*R!!" I'm alone, swearing, with four fuzzy faces starying innocently, and a very, very bewildered husband, wondering what has driving me completely insane in the middle of the night.

Last night, I'd had it.

I was still tired from my long bike on Saturday, and still battling whatever evil hay fever demons had been unleashed by the recent monsoons. I'd been whining all day about my weepy eyes and runny nose, but finally drifted off to sleep, aided as I was by Valerian and a lot of Benedryl.

Ahh, sweet sleep.

I love our pillow-top.



This time, it was my face.
That's right, Miss Thing used. MY. FACE. as her springboard for the evening. By the time I'd stumbled, swearing and crying, into the bathroom, my eye was bleeding in the corner from the two scratches it had received. I'm somewhat allergic to cat scratches, so it was already turning a lovely shade of SWOLLEN SHUT.

Plus, it's just a really, really F%&$#ED-up way to be woken up.

I've had it. I've decided to round up the likely culprits. If I find out who it is, they're getting the closet at night from now on.

SUSPECT #!: Whitney the Meek.
Whitney is a tiny black cat who, for some reason, can't really meow. She takes a deep breath and, when really, really motivated, utters a tiny breathy squeak. She's very small, was probably mal-nourished as a kitten. She was a stray that wondered into our yard and refused to leave. I sure hope it's not her. She tends to pee when she's in closed spaces.

SUSPECT #2: Stella, the Cat I Think Has Survived TBI.
I didn't pick this name. I wanted to name her Mouse. Stella was my first suspect, because she bounces around a lot, like an insane and unholy cross between a nervous little dog and Tigger. She crashes into stuff a lot and knocks things over. Unfortunately, I can't really blame her, because she was not in the house on the night in question, and I'm pretty sure it's always been the same cat.

SUSPECT #3: Hissy Fit
Hissy Fit, we're pretty sure, is Whitney's litter mate. The both showed up and just about the same time.

SUSPECT #4: Lily the Brave
Lily is, quite literally, a scaredy cat. She is afraid of just about everything, which would normally exempt her from being on the headboard at all but for the occasional bouts of early morning crazies that I have witnessed from her. She was adopted from the Tuscaloosa, Alabama animal shelter. She is the noisiest cat I've ever known.

I haven't decided yet how to test to figure out which one is the same cat that keeps using me as its own personal trampoline yet, but I did notice tonight that the area right above Sweet Baboo's head has a bunch of books and magazines over it, so I've shoved them over and put some above MY spot, to see if this changes angles and tragectories at all.

I'll keep you posted.



  1. ha ha ha ha ha! Oh. Stop. I'm hurting. laughing. too hard. I agree - that is a really f*&$@#d up way to wake up!

    OK. So. I have a cat - Squeaky - a siamese, or meezer as they are properly known, and she too goes batsh*t for no reason with her sister, Big Puss (aka The Bowling Ball).

    Drives. Me. Insane.

    My meezer is a tortie point. I blame any and all torties for all manner of cat craziness, as it is in their tortie nature. It's a known fact that all torties are nuts.

    Did I mention she's afraid of sneezes? She can hear you sneeze from two counties away and freak out. With all 20 claws drawn. From my lap. Ow.

  2. Hmmm, if we find a cat lying in the garden, and we know it's dead because it's not moving, will we have to launch a search to find its murderer? :-)

    Obviously you've read "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime" -- I was RIVETED by the psych study that flowed through this book.


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