Thursday, December 13, 2007

A Dirty Alex & Another MEME

Alex went out to play this afternoon. When he decided to come back into the house after his catting around, he immediately demanded his dinner. While he was chowing down, I noticed he has (again) returned home with what appears to be coal dust on his head! I have no idea what the furball is getting into, but I fear I see an encounter between Alex and that nasty water that he hates so much in his future:


Remembering that I ain’t the best memer in the blogasphere, here's my 3rd Meme in two days, this one at the request of Enola

A ~ Available? Of course!

B ~ Best friend: Alex, the cat who owns me

C ~ Cake or pie? Pie, of course

D ~ Drink of choice: Fresca® grapefruit soda

E ~ Essential thing used every day: Computer

F ~ Favorite color: Blue—the shade of my eyes

G ~ Gummi bears or worms? Neither! I dislike both.

H ~ Hometown: Louisville, Kentuckythe Gateway to the South

I ~ Indulgence: Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookies

J ~ January or February? February, the month of my birth

L ~ Life is incomplete without: Serenity

M ~ Marriage date: March 22, 1970; divorce September, 2000

N ~ Number of siblings: One pain-in-the-ass little sister (who is now 57 years old)

O ~ Oranges or apples? Apples.

P ~ Phobias/fears: None left; I’ve converted them all into a rose garden.

Q ~ Favorite quote: Tell the angel who will watch over your future destiny, Morrel, to pray sometimes for a man, who like Satan thought himself for an instant equal to God, but who now acknowledges with Christian humility that God alone possesses supreme power and infinite wisdom. ~ Alexander Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo

R - WHY IS THERE NO R??? Who cares!

S ~ Reason to smile: Love

T ~ Tag three people: Any three of you dudes or dudettes who have nothing better to do

U ~ Unknown fact about me: I have studied and can passably read Latin, (Ancient) Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic and cannot speak any of them.

V ~ Vegetable you don't like: Lima beans.

W ~ Worst habit: Snoring loud enough to wake the dead

X ~ X-rays you've had: chest, left leg

Y ~ Your favorite food: broiled lobster tail

Z ~ Zodiac: Aquarius


  1. so will alex be washing his hair if i ask him out to play?

  2. I'm the same way with languages. I took French in college (not really the most useful of languages in Texas), and although I can't understand it anymore when I hear it, I can comprehend it if I read it.

    I guess if I ever travel to France I'll hve to bring a pack of index cards and a few ballpoint pens.

  3. I'm jealous of your knowledge of the languages of the Bible...and perhaps you could give me a hint about how to achieve this serenity you speak of!

  4. You're sure that Alex isn't just heading out to some odd hair dresser, Alex's idea of experimenting with a new look?

  5. Yum - famous amos cookies and lobster tail. Sounds yummy

    Thanks for playing

  6. MAXXO: As I am sure you know by now, Alex avoids water at all costs. If he does any hair washing, it’s with his tongue. At the moment the furball is doing his evening catting around outside; I wonder what he’s getting into now.

    THOMAS: If France is like the rest of Europe, you’ll probably find most of the Frenchies speak excellent English.

    RIMSHOT: You want to read biblical languages? You can always do is I did and major in history as an undergrad and then spend three years in a theological seminary and 20 years pastoring.

    Serenity, for me, comes from converting, at least in my mind, the dragons I encounter into blessings. And, spending time in the rose garden.

    RON: I never know what the cat is up to! I would not be surprised if he came home tonight with his fur curled.

    ENOLA: I had some Famous Amos cookies earlier this evening. I continue to dream of the lobster tail.

  7. I remember your sister from when she was in high school. I thought she was cute.

  8. I love Lobster tail!

    I think Alex is finding some ashes someone is dumping from their wood burning stove!

  9. LIMA BEANS! Oh...I remember HAVING to eat them as a kid. evil things. But lobster tail? NUMMERS.

    I, too, am so jealous of the language thing - that's awesome!

  10. i loved your meme's :) you are a good memeer. lol..
    also stole and posted a few. i am lame, hear me roar. hehe

  11. Blue is my favorite color, too, the color of the sky when there are cumulus clouds in it.

    I also hate lima beans, although I like most vegetables. Brussel sprouts and eggplant have no reason to live, even though the latter is beautiful.

  12. Well I was born a coal miners owner
    In a cabin, on a hill in Butcher Holler...


    Pooh then! Lima beans for you!


  13. Is that shop cat food or did you make it yourself?

  14. Are you very like cats, so do I..Please visit my blog at the River city

  15. ANGUS: I remember her then, too. She stole my GTO! That was not cute.

    LITTLE WING: Whatever the furball is finding, the stuff on him does nothing for his appearance or for my sheets when he curls up on the bed and the black stuff rubs off on them. Silly cat!

    TUG: My memories of also being induced to eat those damned mushy lima beans evoke a gagging reflex in me! Yucky!

    There are “parallel bibles” that have Hebrew in one column and English in the column beside it for the Old Testament and Greek and English for the New Testament. Those, combined with books providing English definitions and expositions of the Hebrew and Greek words and phrases, can give one real insights into the original languages For New Testament Greek, Bromiley’s “Theological Dictionary of the New Testament” abridged into one volume is a great investment.

  16. ANONYMOUS: Yes, Alex is cute; however, he really resents being referred to as a “pussy.”

    XMICHRA: Thank you! Please “steal” whatever you wish—no copyright of my stuff and I love sharing!

    HEARTINSANFRANCISCO: I agree: blue, in all its shades, is a fabulous color. It seems that my aversion of lima beans has struck a note with a lot of folks!

    PINK: Now I am beginning to sing Billy Ed Wheeler’s song “Coal Tattoo!”
    “Somebody said "That's a strange tattoo
    You have on the side of your head."
    I said ‘That's a blue print, left by the coal
    Just a little more and I'd be dead’”

    GORILLA BANANAS: The cat food in both dishes is from the store. The light colored stuff is Friskies Signature Blend—a dry food—and the darker stuff is Friskies Seared Filets with Salmon—a “wet” food with gravy. Alex usually just laps up the gravy of the latter and leaves the “food.” Are gorillas into this kind of victuals?

    AZMIEL: I dropped by your River City site but it seems to be primarily Google Adsense ads. Did I miss something?

  17. Mr. Nick,

    Enjoyed your meme. In Europe, Latin was required in schools. But no one I know actually speaks Latin. I used to speak Hungarian, German, Serbian/Slavic and English. Now I just speak American!

    Love the pictures of Alex. Even with a little dirt on his head, he is a handsome cat.



  18. Nick
    He has probably found somewhere warm, like under a car or somewhere where all that dust comes from.Well that is if he is anything like my mothers cats who are slaves to underfloor heating and radiators.

  19. I absolutely love your favorite quote! That was beautiful!

    You think Alex wants a new hair style? Does he have that black streak, or is that the coal itself? I'm confused which is the coal marks and which isn't. What a beautiful little feline! :)

    Hope you're doing well, Nick!

  20. Hmm. Wonder what Alex is up to? Where on earth is he sticking his head, it almost looks as if he's been sniffing up in an exhaust pipe.

  21. It's funny. I hate being tagged, but I love reading other people's memes. Hahaha. And, I love lobster, too, but I think I like Filet Mignon better=:)

  22. RENIE: Thank you. You are able to speak quite a few languages! You remind me of my sergeant when I was a U.S. intelligence officer stationed in Germany. SGT Volk spoke the same combination of languages and was deliverance to me and my (very) poor German.

    Yes, Alex is a handsome cat. He’s also much like a rebellious and plucky adolescent when can be a real pain in my arse!

    THE HITCH: At the very least I am certain that Alex has found some new place to explore. Since he was a kitten he has had an inquisitive streak that has gotten in weird places, such as my inadvertently shutting him into drawers and even the dish washer. (Thankfully, I heard his meow before I turned it one).

    DEB: Thank you: I memorized those words when I was about twelve years old and first read the Count of Monte Cristo. I suppose knowing those words is a primary reason why I so strongly believe that justice must never be confused with revenge.

    I believe that the artificial black color on Alex’s coat is coal dust. Most of the houses around me are, like mine, over a hundred years old and have coal cellars. I rather think that Alex has found one or- more of those cellars to explore.

    MATT-MAN: Absolutely! After all, this is the Age of Aquarius!

  23. SAINTSEESTER: I wonder…tail pipes could be what the furball is exploring.

    THE LONE BEADER: A Sea (Lobster) and Turf (Filet Mignon) sounds like an excellent meal! I wonder if I can figure out how to have that for Christmas dinner?

  24. Mr Nick
    maybe you could leave him in the washing machine turn it on to boil and solve your christmas day lunch problems ?(+:

  25. I have 2 questions for you and Alex. We just moved and our neighborhood is replete with cats.

    (1) How do I get the cats to stop sleeping on top of my car - besides letting Tallie-dog loose to chase them? Because cat pawprints on my car are a huge no no.

    (2) Can you explain, in almost-4 year old language, why cats lick themselves instead of bathing in a tub? And furthermore why it is not appropriate for my daughter to lick herself in lieu of a bath? Because I don't seem to be getting anywhere and have had to resort to that old Mommy trick of "because I said so dammit"

  26. THE HITCH: Eat Alex? Yuck! There is a formula for the automatic bathing of cats. I posted it as humor a couple of years ago. Of course, cat bathing is far from humorous; it is more like major combat. Here is one take on the procedure:

    * Know that although the cat has the advantage of quickness and lack of concern for human life, you have the advantage of strength. Capitalize on that advantage by selecting the battlefield. Don't try to bathe him in an open area where he can force you to chase him.
    *Pick a very small bathroom. If your bathroom is more than four feet square, I recommend that you get in the tub with the cat and close the sliding-glass doors as if you were about to take a shower. (A simple shower curtain will not do. A berserk cat can shred a three-ply rubber shower curtain quicker than a politician can shift positions.)
    * Know that a cat has claws and will not hesitate to remove all the skin from your body. Your advantage here is that you are smart and know how to dress to protect yourself. I recommend canvas overalls tucked into high-top construction boots, a pair of steel-mesh gloves, an army helmet, a hockey face mask and a long-sleeve flak jacket.
    * Prepare everything in advance. There is no time to go out for a towel when you have a cat digging a hole in your flak jacket. Draw the water. Make sure the bottle of kitty shampoo is inside the glass enclosure. Make sure the towel can be reached, even if you are lying on your back in the water.
    * Use the element of surprise. Pick up your cat nonchalantly, as if to simply carry him to his supper dish. (Cats will not usually notice your strange attire. They have little or no interest in fashion as a rule. If he does notice your garb, calmly explain that you are taking part in a product- testing experiment for J.C. Penney.)
    * Once you are inside the bathroom, speed is essential to survival. In a single liquid motion, shut the bathroom door, step into the tub enclosure, slide the glass door shut, dip the cat in the water and squirt him with shampoo. You have begun one of the wildest 45 seconds of your life. Cats have no handles.
    * Add the fact that he now has soapy fur, and the problem is radically compounded. Do not expect to hold on to him for more that two or three seconds at a time. When you have him, however, you must remember to give him another squirt of shampoo and rub like crazy. He'll then spring free and fall back into the water, thereby rinsing himself off. (The national record is - for cats - three latherings, so don't expect too much.)
    * Next, the cat must be dried. Novice cat bathers always assume this part will be the most difficult, for humans generally are worn out at this point and the cat is just getting really determined. In fact, the drying is simple compared to what you have just been through. That's because by now the cat is semi-permanently affixed to your right leg. You simply pop the drain plug with your foot, reach for your towel and wait. (Occasionally, however, the cat will end up clinging to the top of your army helmet. If this happens, the best thing you can do is to shake him loose and to encourage him toward your leg.) After all the water is drained from the tub, it is a simple matter to just reach down and dry the cat.
    In a few days the cat will relax enough to be removed from your leg. He will usually have nothing to say for about three weeks and will spend a lot of time sitting with his back to you. He might even become psychoceramic and develop the fixed stare of a plaster figurine. You will be tempted to assume he is angry. This isn't usually the case. As a rule he is simply plotting ways to get through your defenses and injure you for life the next time you decide to give him a bath. But, at least now he smells a lot better.

  27. Oh the perils of cat bathing... have been there...

    Love that you are such a linguist... and the famous amos cookies sound awesome - send some this way...

    Blessings of peace, M

  28. TK: See my comment to The Hitch.

    ENOLA: I shall attempt to answer your questions. Please remember that I have only bee owned by a cat for about 4 years.

    Cats have the innate ability to locate the warmest spot wherever they are. Whether it is moving from window to window in the house following the rays of the sun or reclining on the floor heat vent (which is Alex’s favorite), a feline will find the warmest place around.
    I suspect that your neighbor cats have learned that automobiles become warm after being driven and thus are available places to find heat, at least until the automobile’s engine cools off. My only suggestion on how to keep the small domesticated mammals that have soft fur, sharp claws, pointed ears, and, usually, a long furry tail off your automobile is to never drive your car

    As for why cats lick themselves cleans and humans shouldn’t, cats are created by God to do so. Their tongues are rougher than a loofa sponge and their spittle contains certain enzymes that clean their fur without drying out their skin as soaps do us humans. As for getting your daughter into the bathtub, I believe you are already using the best means—short of hogtying her.

    MAITHRI: Thanks you! You may want to peruse my comment to THE HITCH above regarding how to (safely) bath a cat. As for my linguistic skills, they are really very poor. However, at the moment I am working on my own translation of Isaiah 43, a very powerful and hope-filled text, that I have found through the years isn’t well interpreted by most of the English translations. There is a nuance in the Hebrew that is lacking in English.

    As for Famous Amos cookies, they are indescribably delicious. Do they not have these marvels in Australia?

  29. Aquarius? me too!
    I hope young Alex isn't getting into any mischief.

  30. PAULINE: Aquarians are special!

    Young Alex has the feline inquisitive gene. I also keep praying that he has the feline 9 lives gene as well.

  31. oh, yuk, yuk. i hate lima beans toooooo. they do NOT taste like food, no matter what anyone claims to the countrary.

    just because something grows in the ground doesn't mean it's for eating. i mean, trees grow. do we boil them up with butter and corn?

    i think mashed lima beans would make a splendid pulp for paper.

  32. CATNAPPING: Amen! I like the idea of making paper from Lima beans. I'm sure that's what we were intended to do with them.

  33. Neat meme, Nick -

    Really like your rose garden! :)

  34. I love all your meme's. Fascinating coincidences about the birthdays.


    Marchioness Moonbeam the Naive of Featherstonehaugh St Fanshaw

  35. i do love reading memes... but they can be a bitch to complete! i'm playing catch up at the moment...

  36. This is very interesting.