Saturday, December 25, 2010

“It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!”

Part Two, in which we discover why there are scratching posts in homes with cats….

Cheese had fallen asleep while thinking about all those human holidays of the winter, but Banana had just had a great idea and needed to share it with him. One more teensy nudge, and Banana watched as Cheese fell from the bookcase and landed with a thud on the floor.

“Grrr!!!! I’ll get you, Banana!” Cheese chased her from the room, which was just what Banana had planned all along. They needed some privacy so Banana could explain her brilliant idea to Cheese.

An hour later, they were taking turns at the scratching post.

Awww…look at the two cats! They’re being so cute together, using the scratching post…” Gale laughed at the earnest faces of Banana and Cheese. “I’m going to get the camera and take a photo—they look so serious!”

Banana and Cheese were so focused on their scratching, they didn’t notice the flashes of light. “OK,” grunted Banana. “I think that’s the last of the message to Kitty Klaws! I hope she gets our wishes in time."

“Don’t worry, Banana! We’ve sent our message with days to spare! She works magic on all those wishes!” Cheese tried to sound confident, but he was a little worried too.

“I know, but there are just so many cats in the world…maybe she won’t have time to get to our wish!” Banana sat and thought for a minute. “Maybe we should scratch it again, just in case?”

“She’s got it, I can feel it!” Cheese felt so happy, he twirled in a circle, chasing his tail, until he got dizzy and fell over.

“Did you get a photo of our silly cat?” Karen asked Gale, as they watched Cheese tumbling around on the rug.

Now, what follows has been, up until this moment, a secret to all beings except for cats, but Banana and Cheese have given me permission to tell the story…..

The story of the winter cat holiday, Felidae Whiskermas!

What, you ask, is Felidae Whiskermas?

Well, you’re familiar with what happens on the night of December 24th? Better known as Christmas Eve? When Santa Claus pays a visit to the homes of good children? Even adults look forward to Santa’s visit (it’s true!)—they can’t wait to see what gifts he’s brought down the chimney or through the door. It’s a magical time for humans, and even grown-ups can’t really explain how Santa gets to all those houses, all over the world, in one night. AND, he brings gifts and fills stockings at each and every stop! AND, nobody ever sees Santa, even though some try and others say they hear Santa, or his reindeer, just outside….yes, all very magical indeed.

Well, there’s other magic on Christmas Eve—magic you’ve probably never even noticed. It happens in the blink of a human eye, and it’s easy for humans to miss—it’s just that quick. Just 47.3 seconds after Santa leaves, when everyone is rushing around, eager to see what gifts have been left for them, what goodies are in their stockings—that’s when the magic happens.

47.3 seconds after Santa leaves your house, your cat vanishes. Yes, all the cats, from all over the world, gather in one magical place to celebrate Felidae Whiskermas.

[Sorry, the place will remain a secret to humans; besides, humans don’t really care that much; they’re too busy with their own celebrating!]

In this magical gathering place, there are treats, games, and…catnip! But best of all, Kitty Klaws (ever wonder where Santa Claus got his name?!) comes to visit too! Kitty Klaws has spent months carefully listening to the scratches of cats from all over the world. And in this magicalplace, the wishes the cats have scratched to her come true. That is, the wishes Kitty Klaws has heard will come true, for Kitty is just like every other cat we know, and sometimes she just doesn’t listen at all. That’s why you will sometimes see your own cat, frantically clawing their scratching post; they have a great wish to send to Kitty Klaws, and they are really, really hoping she will hear it.

On this particular delightful, magical night, Banana and Cheese are having great fun with their friends: Pekeo, Earl, Kona Kitty,

Freya and Teego

The Baby, Grayce, Tiny Johnson, Felix, Rupert, Scouty, CC, Sweet Pea, Maui, May Ling, Salem, Sylvester,

The Katnip Lounge

Admiral Hestorb, Teego, Charlie, Kiki,

Tabbouleh, Joey, Orange, Vegas, Angel, Kirby, Mac, Freya, and Twitch.

Admiral Hestorb

Cheese is munching on some chicken, and Banana is chasing a little blue light around the circle.

Angel, Kirby and Mac

All at once, the cats stop what they’re doing, sniff the air, prick up their ears, and begin purring….

Kitty Klaws has arrived! Kitty moves quickly and quietly from cat to cat to cat, and then, with flick of her tail, she’s gone.


Shortly after, the cats make their sleepy way back into the human world. While it’s just been a blink of a human eye, they’ve been celebrating for most of a cat day, and they are very, very tired.

Miss Kitty

Sometimes they’re so tired, they take extra cat naps every day until the next Felidae Whiskermas (and that explains why cats seem to sleep so much, doesn’t it?) .

On this particular Felidae Whiskermas, Banana and Cheese head back to the human world with big smiles on their faces and packages tucked under their collars. Kitty Klaws heard their wish!

The next morning, Banana meows and meows to go out. Karen opens the door, and Banana rushes out, Cheese following close behind. They run after the squirrels, sit under the bird feeders for a while, and even have a roll in the snow with Twitch. Karen and Gale watch them play for a while, and then Gale turns to Karen, a puzzled look on her face.

“Karen,” she asks, “where do you suppose Banana and Cheese got those mittens?!”

Happy Felidae Whiskermas to all our furry feline friends.

Happy holidays to all our human friends—we wish

you all the best in 2011!

Friday, December 24, 2010

“It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!”

Part One, in which we learn about Human Winter Holidays….

Banana and Cheese were sitting at the patio door, watching the snow fall. Banana sighed deeply, flopped onto the floor, and put her head on her paws. “Well Cheese, that’s it. No mores squirrel-chasing for a long time!”

Cheese looked questioningly at Banana. “Why can’t we chase them? They’re right out there at the feeder, eating corn and shaking their tails this way!”

“Well, duh, Cheese—our paws will get too cold in the snow! I’ve tried to walk through the snow, and I’ve lasted about 20.6 seconds—Karen had to come out and get me because I was stranded under the picnic table!” As Banana remembered her ordeal, she shook herself, then started licking her white paws.

“Well, some animals aren’t so delicate—here comes that dog from across the street!” Cheese peered through the glass door, then looked again in surprise. “What’s that on her tail?!”

Dog-from-across-the-street walked toward the patio door, tail held high in the air. “Hey cats! Happy St Nicholas Day! Did you remember to leave a shoe out last night? I borrowed one from my person (don’t worry, it wasn’t his best-tasting one), put it outside the door, and look what was inside this morning: a tail bell!” Dog-from-across-street wagged her tail, and there was a loud jiggling sound.

“THAT. Is THE MOST frightening thing I have ever SEEN!” Cheese turned and ran.

“Ignore Cheese, Dog-from-across-the-street,” Banana explained. “He ran and hid during the loud Diwali celebration hosted by the Roys last month too. He just does not enjoy noise very

much. Candles make him nervous too, so even though Comet Cohen invited us to tonight’s Hanukkah celebration, I will have to go without him.”

But Dog was not listening anymore; “Squirrel!” she barked, and off she went.

Banana sighed and settled down for another long winter nap….

One week later, Banana and Cheese, still sleepy from the night before, when they celebrated the Festival of the Virgin of Guadalupe with Blythey Soto and her people, were stretched out on a heat vent. They took turns wandering from window to window and wishing they could be outside. But there was still snow everywhere, and even though each cat tried, they couldn’t last more than 20.6 seconds outside—their paws just got too cold.

“Cheeeeeeese! Think!” Banana whined. “There’s got to be something we can do to get outside! Maybe we could ask Karen and Gale to build us a….” Before she could finish her thought, Banana heard the doorbell. Cheese had started running for the basement, but Banana ran to look out the window to see what friend was coming to visit.

“Cheese! Stop! It’s just Lucy Carlson and her people. Ooooo….wow….” Banana stopped talking as Lucy walked in, wearing a bright red sash.

“Do you like it?” Lucy asked. “Today is St. Lucia Day, and all the young girls in our family get to wear these this morning. It’s so soft and makes me feel so pretty…” her voice trailed off as she stroked the sash for the 22nd time that morning. “But enough chit chat! Have you two scratched your message to Kitty Klaus yet?” Before Banana or Cheese could answer, Karen called them into the kitchen so they could try the tasty Swedish cat treats Lucy brought to share. Yum! There was plenty of fishballs for all!

Another week passed; it was a busy week of birthdays—first Erika’s birthday, and then Peter’s birthday. The cats were thrilled with the smunchy wrapping paper and the licks of ice cream they stole from dishes when nobody was looking.

On this day, the whole family had gathered in the living room. They were napping, reading, wrapping gifts, batting at decorations on the Christmas tree, chasing balls of ribbon, but in the midst of all the activity, Banana was doing what she had been doing for weeks now—staring outside, wishing she could find some way to be playing in the snow and visiting her birds at the feeders.

Cheese, who as taking a break from decoration destruction, was startled when Twitch jumped up on the ledge on the other side of the window.

“Hey!! Cheese!! Happy Solstice!!” Twitch looked so happy, but Cheese just looked….puzzled.

“What is Solstice, Twitch?” Cheese made himself comfortable, for he knew this would probably be one of Twitches’ long stories.

“Well,” Twitch began, “Solstice is a holiday some humans celebrate—for them, it’s a time to celebrate the Return of the Sun. And, as all outdoor cats know, tonight will be the longest night of the year, BUT beginning tomorrow, each day will be a little longer…and warmer!’ Twitch purred in happy anticipation. “Evergreen Marsh has invited me to his humans’ bonfire tonight…he says they will be burning a Yule log. There will be food and heat! Want to come?”

“Ohhh….no thank you,” Cheese shivered at the thought of all that fire. “Banana and I have….um…we’re….uh…scratching our wishes to Kitty Klaws tonight! Yeah! That’s what we’re doing—scratching our wishes…” Cheese was relieved he had thought of something to do, so he wouldn’t have to tell Twitch that he was really afraid of the fire. Besides, they really did need to figure out what to say to Kitty Klaws.

“Well, suit yourself,” Twitch shrugged. “I plan to be warm tonight, and then tomorrow, it will stay light a little longer, and before we know it, Spring will be here and there will be lots of little ones running through your back yard! Yes indeed, this is a very important night for all wild animals like me. Well, see you in a few days—I can’t wait to see Kitty Klaws either!” With a happy flick of her tail, Twitch was gone.

Cheese sat at the window a little longer, thinking about all the human holidays that were celebrated this time of the year—there had been so many already, and Cheese knew of even more holidays to come: Christmas, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year. Each holiday was special to some group of humans, and the humans had unique traditions for each holiday. But no matter what holiday the humans celebrated, they were convinced their cats should be included, because of course cats did not have any holidays of their own, and would probably be sad this time of the year if they weren’t included in whatever the humans were doing.

But! They…would…be…WRONG!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Party!

To all the kitties out there! Our Halloween Party story was such a success that we have decided to throw a Christmas Party story.

If you plan on coming, please RSVP by Saturday, December 19th!

Pass it on!

Banana and Cheese