2009: The Year of the Cat Nascar

I would say that Manny sleeps and/or naps for approximately 23 hour a day. Not really surprising as he is a cat, but what is surprising is the amount of activity that cat can cram into his one hour of sleeplessness. Also interesting is the time of night he chooses to engaged in what I like to call, CAT NASCAR. Last night it was 3 AM. So, I guess I should change "last night" to "way way too early in the morning.

I have no idea what brings upon this sudden burst of energy, but when it happens Manny hits the ground running. Literally. He jumps off the bed, lands on the floor with a loud thud that usually signals the beginning of his laps around the house. He runs from room to room on the second floor until he realizes that “oh yeah, we have a second floor” and bounds down the stairs and back up and back down. Every once in awhile in all his excitement he misses a step or two and you can hear the extra galloping it takes to regain his momentum. Then its back on the bed so that he can jump back off and then back on. Repeat. Run around the 2nd floor a few times; downstairs to his water bowl; maybe a pit stop at the litter box; and back upstairs where he usually runs into a fake toy mouse. Throw the fake toy mouse into the mix and it sounds like someone let a herd of horses into the house [actually being that I live in Queens, I'll liken it to a runaway subway car]. Manny has been getting more talkative so while he does his laps and fake toy mouse throwing, he likes to squeak. Well I guess its meowing, but it sounds more like squeaking. I’m pretty sure his squeaks are directed at me, as in, “get your lazy arse out of bed and entertain meeeeeeeee”. Of course his energy wanes and he’s back on the bed to make himself comfy for the rest of the night/early morning; the following afternoon; and evening.

This morning when I went to make the bed he was still wrapped up in a ball (as seen in the picture from last post) recuperating from his early morning shenanigans. I gently picked him up (he squeaked at me) and placed him on the floor. I turn back around and he’s back in the spot I just removed him from. I try again. He manages to sneak back to his warm and cozy spot in super stealth mode before I can attempt to make the bed. I try again. And again. Eventually he gets bored of this “game” we are apparently playing and jumps off the bed and goes to his under-the-bed oasis (aka his hideout) to resume his sleepy time.

Tonight, I plan to ring in the New Year by chillax-in' at home and playing Guitar Hero like a wannabe rock star. I haven’t been at home on NYE in a awhile, so I’m looking forward to it. Manny will be conserving his energy for the next bout of CAT NASCAR.

Whatever your plans are tonight - Manny; The Husband and I wish you a safe and fun New Years. We hope that 2009 will bring you an abundance of blogging material – all good things, of course.


Reworking a Classic...

Not a creature was stirring, not even a Manny...

....on Comet! On Cupid! on, Donder (Donner ?) and Manny!

...Manny Christmas to all! And all a good night!

Manny archives



Manny is still sneaking into the 2nd bedroom to spread out on the day bed, but he has learnt to jump off and sneak out of the room when he hears someone coming. If he’s napping in the room and gets busted he knows enough to at least look guilty. So, yes, I’m making progress.

Lately he’s taken up an interest in kitchen cabinets. When I come home from work I see the pantry doors slightly ajar as well as the cabinets under the sink. I have no idea what his fascination is with them, but I’m thinking of investing in child safety locks to keep him out. The good side is that my house will be child proof well before a baby pitter patters into the picture. At first, I thought The Husband was being overly lazy when he went into the cabinets and would “forget” to close them, but he swore it wasn’t him. So then I thought “Great. I moved into a house with ghosts…” Luckily, I caught Manny in the act (because thinking you live in a ghost infested house is not fun). He pries the cabinets open with his paw and then rubs his face on the edge of the door and walks away.

We’ve put up the Christmas tree and Manny’s been pretty good with it. Cabinets and daybeds excite him more I guess because he hasn’t really gone near it much. When we brought it in the house, he supervised from the steps.

Speaking of the steps, the stairs are now his new throne. He likes to watch what his people are doing from high places. When people come to visit he sits on the stairs and watches. You need to climb the steps if you want to say hello to Sir Manny. He doesn’t come to you. As if.

I bought an early Christmas gift for me – actually it’s for my camera. I bought my camera a Christmas gift. The Camera got a Canon EF 50 mm F/1.8 II lens to play around with. Manny’s been my (un)willing model. Every time I take out the camera he flinches. He’s not a big fan of the flash so every picture I take of Manny his eyes are closed. I have nice squinty pictures of my cat. I’ll post them on here soon.

That’s about it for Manny happenings. Just trying to get ready for the holidays which means chasing Manny around with his Christmas collar. Stay tuned.


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This belongs to Manny...and so does that, and that...

When we first moved into our new place, we used the second bedroom upstairs as a dumping ground for miscellaneous boxes and items that we weren't sure where we were going to put them. Among these items were Manny's litter box and food stuff. We decided to keep his stuff in the second bedroom while we worked on arranging (and rearranging) downstairs. We didn't want to keep shifting his food and litter box every two seconds.

This past weekend we made some great strides in organizing the second bedroom (it can actually be used as a guest bedroom now!). We finally found a couple of spots downstairs that work for Manny's food and litter box and shifted his stuff downstairs. That transition went well for Manny and he just continued eating and using the box in the appropriate places as if nothing ever changed. The daybed that we bought for the second/guest bedroom is set up with bedding and blankets waiting for potential over night visitors (hint, hint family!) to use it. Yesterday, I walked into the room to look for a miscellaneous box, and there staring at me from the bed, was Manny. He looked at me like, "uh, don't you ever knock", and I looked at him like, "uh, what are you doing on *this* bed...". So I went over, picked him up off the bed and carried him to my bed explaining to him that he can not possibly take over every piece of furniture in this house -one bed per customer!". He noted his dissatisfaction by a few tail swishes but eventually plopped down on my bed to continue his snooze.

Fast forward a few hours later. I was walking up the stairs when I heard the unmistakable sound of paws landing on the floor. I looked toward the second bedroom and saw Manny sneaking out of the guest bedroom heading towards my room. I followed him into my room and watched him curl up on my bed.

"Manny", I said. "I know you think everything in this house is yours, but seriously, do you think I can have just one thing that does not have orange fur all over it? I would appreciate it, and future guests would appreciate it - do you think you can make that happen?

I got a tail swish in response.

I'm pretty sure his orange fur is the equivalent to human's leaving yellow sticky notes with the word "MINE" all over their belongings.

So now I am on a crusade to reclaim the guest bedroom as the guest bedroom and not Manny's Domain East. Even if it means having to leave yellow sticky notes all over that bed. I have a feeling it will be a losing battle, but we'll see if it can be done.


Happy Halloween!

Or Happy Man-Oh-Ween as I like to say! Check out the card Kim sent me this year for Halloween! Kim and Courtney have the amazing ability to alway find the best cat cards - I'm glad I get to be the lucky recipient! This particular card captures Manny's personality perfectly!


Ps..Feel free to comment - a blogger or google account is not required in order to leave some love.


Home Sweet New Home

We are back from Ireland and have moved into our new home! We've been very busy unpacking and settling in, but I'm happy to say, we are all accounted for.  Yes, The Husband; Manny; two "fishies" and I successfully moved into our new home.  One couch and one box spring were not so successful.  It was a tiresome move with some tears (mine); cries (Manny) and plenty of cursing (everyone). 

But I'll cut to the chase, I know everyone wants to hear about Manny and how he handled the move.  He was a champ! The vet gave Manny  Acepromazine to help Manny get through the hour drive and subsequent move.  It worked!  Manny cried a little bit when we first put him the dreaded cat carrier, but once in the car he surprisingly settled in for the ride.  His calm demeanor obviously had a lot to do with the tranquilizer, but it was a relief that he didn't spend the car ride meowing in feigned agony. 

When we arrived in the new place, we put Manny in a spare bedroom that we were going to keep closed during the entire move.  We set him up with his water and food bowls; the litter box; and his beloved fish towel and blankets that we kept in his hideout (under the bed) at our old place.  He snuggled into the blankets and napped.  He was pretty much out of it for the rest of the day.  A couple of times when I checked up on him, I saw that he had wrapped all the blankets around himself.  He looked like a lil pig in the blanket. 

Towards midnight, the Acepromazine wore off and he started to meow to be let out of the room.  I was nervous about letting him out but didn't want him to spend his first night crying.  When we let him out we brought him into our room, hoping that we could confine him in there until morning.  He was completely fine with that.  I think he just wanted him Mom (and Dad).  He sniffed around our room for a bit and once he was finished jumped onto the mattress and purred away. 

The next day we let Manny explore and he had a busy schedule of sniffing boxes and inspecting the furniture.  When he wasn't sniffing around, he was busy trying to wedge himself under my dresser. It's amazing how he is able to flatten himself out and squeeze himself into the smallest of places.  It's like he unhinges all his bones and just slides right in. I am so glad he had a collar on because it allowed me to find him when he hid amidst the boxes.

We have a second floor in our new place and Manny has been completely intrigued with the stairs.  At first he just stood at the top looking at me like "you have got to be kidding me, where is the nearest elevator?".  But his curiosity got the better of himself and he gingerly walked down sideways to visit the downstairs.  Now, about three weeks later, he runs up and down the stairs like he's running a marathon.  He's back to jumping up on the couch to watch TV, although he prefers to stay upstairs for the time being.  He still goes to his hideout, and The Husband and I joke that he's busy redecorating down there.  He's been eating and purring - two signs that give me great comfort.  It basically let's me know that he's doing ok and is pretty content with his surroundings. 

I'm sure there will be more Manny adventures headed our way and we'll be back to share them with you soon.  Excuse me while I figure out what's in box no. one hundred and fifty five. Waiting for the non-existent elevator



King of Queens

One of my long time readers, Helen, gave me a lil nudge the other day.  She politely pointed out that its been over a month (cringe) since my last post and her cats (pictured below) were desperately waiting for another post.  Okay, maybe I added the desperately part, but nonetheless the picture worked and we can all thank Helen for this post. 

This time I have a pretty valid excuse for not posting in over a month (cringe, again).  We're moving! By October.  So for the past several weeks my house has been in total disarray with boxes everywhere.   I can not be creative in such cluttered conditions!  Not buying it?  Ok, well, there are still boxes everywhere and if I'm going to do anything after I get home from a long day at work, I'm going to sit on the couch and watch tv - err...pack. Packing leaves little time for blogging about my favorite orange fur ball. 

Manny is taking the move in stride.  I keep reminding him that he will be moving and needs to start packing his things.  He stares blankly at me when I tell him that.  Actually, so does The Husband now that I think about it. Since we started putting our possessions in cardboard boxes and shoving everything into the dinning room Manny has turned into the Move Inspector.  Every morning I find him sniffing things and walking around the room just checking things out (how he found space to walk around in is beyond me).  In fact he's sitting under the table as I write this under the same chair we find him every morning.  The Husband thinks that Manny is watching over our stuff.  I think Manny, not literate in calendar, is just making sure he is not going to be left behind come move day. As if that would happen.  If I could put him in a box marked fragile now I would, but I'm pretty sure he would hate that.

So now besides packing (I hate packing) The Husband and I are in discussions over the best way to move Manny.  The vet suggested valium.  For Manny, that is.   We also need to figure out a way to move that Godforsaken fish tank.  The vet suggested valium. For me, not the fish.  With all that to think about, I'm surprised I just don't sit on the couch and watch the Family Guy after work -- oh wait, I do. 

With that said, I'm excited to be moving.  My faster commute to work will be a dream; and I'm ready for a new adventure of sorts.  Now if only I could snap my fingers and everything would be done for me, I'd be golden.

P.S. I leave for Ireland today. Yup, I'm a glutton. Good bye disarray, hellooo Emerald Isle.


Eddie, Esme and Simone, left to right in the photo. Helen writes, "Eddie gets called Eddie Spaghetti, and Simone is Simonee Spumoni - we haven't come up with an Italian connection for Esme".  Mannicotti Biscotti loves the Italian nicknames, btw.



Manny Knows Best

You think I would understand that little mantra by now, but nope, can't say that I do.  I do know that if I wanna pet Manny it's best that you stick out your hand for the little orange guy to sniff and pet him ONLY where he wants to be pet.  Manny will make certain to direct your hand in the right spot by giving your hand a little brush with his head.  I know that just because Manny rolls on his back, doesn't mean that it's an open invitation to rub his furry belly.  I know that it doesn't matter if you're trying to write a long over due blog - if Manny wants to play with his mouse - we play with the mouse.  So in some aspects I know and respect the Manny Rules, but then incidences like the one below will crop up totally setting me back from being a full fledged Manny expert.  

Even something as innocuous as testing out a new can of food will wreck havoc on the household. It all started out so innocently.  It was a sunny day and I had just emerged from Penn Station on my way to the office when I spotted a well-know cat food company giving away samples of their new wet food "in a convenient pour and serve pouch".  The Husband and I scored some "real tuna dinner" pouches and thought Manny would like to try something other than Fancy Feast for dinner.  Seldom right and wrong again.  That night I decided to forgo the Fancy Feast in favor of my newly acquired free sample.  I opened the pouch and poured some into his bowl - they were right, it was convenient - however, the pouch eliminated the pop top tin can sound cats know and worship. Strike one.  Manny looked like at me like I was a crazy fool (and I was) for serving up something other than Fancy Feast.  He sniffed it, looked at me, then walked away.  Strike two.  When hunger won out, Manny came back to his bowl and gave the tuna a try.  He ate the whole thing and I thought we might have a winner - SCORE!

I came home from work the following day and was greeted by a nice pile of cat regurgitation.  Lovely as that was, I wasn't all that concerned as I cleaned up the mess.  When I went into the bathroom something in the bathtub caught my eye.  Oh. no. he. didn't.  Oh yes he did.  I called The Husband over to show him that Manny decided that the tub would be a good place for a second litter box.  Upon seeing Manny's bathtub deposits, The Husband mentioned that he better check out the (real) litter box asap.  That was a another nice surprise.  It looked like a battled was waged in that box and I felt awful.  I realized then and there that Manny's tummy had totally revolted the "real tuna dinner".  I gave Manny some extra pets that evening while apologizing over and over for being so stupid.  I also praised him for being so totally smart when he decided to grace the bathtub with his presence, instead of, oh, I don't know -- the carpet. 

Another lesson learned.  Stick to what you know or rather what your cat knows and likes.  Manny likes his Fancy Feast, so Manny will get Fancy Feast (and only The Feast) Note to self: don't pick up cat food samples on the corner of a Manhattan sidewalk.  It's not going to score me any points.

P.S. the rest of the samples we acquired by sticking out our greedy little hands are going to Manny's former shelter.  There has got to be a cat in there that will like it!


Manny 7.6.08


Manny FAQ's

Man Oh Manny! How time flies in between blog posts!! I've been so incredibly....[lazy]...about writing down Manny's antics. Actually Manny's been so incredibly lazy, hence the post-less blogs. It's so much easier to push the blame onto a cat that spends 23 hrs a day sleeping.

A few people have asked me some Manny related questions recently so I thought I'd do a little Manny question and answer session post. You all will have an opportunity to ask your questions and the end of the session via blog comments and emails. Please, hold your applause.

Here goes.

Q. Does Manny still spend most of his time in his hideout?

A. Not really. Only when the vacuum comes out, but honestly, in my house, that's not a frequent occasion. Manny much rather hang out on top of the bed laying across pillows and making himself comfortable on the Duvet.

Q. Does Manny wake you up when he's hungry?

A. Nope, I'm happy to say that he only wakes me up when he wants to be pet. He likes to poke me in the head with his paw. Over and over and over and over. In the middle of the night. During the week.

The only time he begs for food is when the fridge opens, the silverware draw opens; he hears his treat jar; when we open a cabinet; when we walk into the kitchen or when we cook chicken. Go figure.

Q. Is he still shy?

A. Not if your blonde and female. He loves girls. There are certain visitors that he gets all mushy for and will flip over and show off his belly. He purrs really loud and just totally eats up all the attention. Manny will bond with you if it's on his own terms. Just stick out your hand and he will show you where to pet.

Q. What are some of Manny's dislikes?

A. My camera in his face; loud noises; the Mets; football season; cat carriers; meat flavored fancy feast; and a messy litter box.

Q. ...and his likes?

A. Me; yoga (it might have something to do my Denise Austin yoga DVDs...); the Yankees: Fancy Feast days; sometimes The Husband; treats; and surprises that comes for him in boxes.

Q. How has Manny been getting along with the fish lately?

A. Swimmingly. Just this morning I caught him with his faced pressed against the glass undoubtedly wishing the fish a good morning.

Q. Has manny found any rogue blueberries?

A. Funny you should ask [Kevin!] I just got a good sale on some blueberries over the weekend. Maybe I will let some blueberries lose on the kitchen floor and let the mayhem begin.

Feel free to send/comment any of your Manny related questions!

More Manny can be found @ manohmanny.net



So, I think I pretty much have plans for a trip almost, sorta, kinda, just about nailed down. In a few months I should be hopefully possibly going to...IRELAND!

On one end of the spectrum, I'm beyond excited about the potential prospect of visiting Ireland for 10 days with The Husband. Ireland has been on my travel list for so long that it will be just plain awesome to actually go. However, on the opposite end of the spectrum, I'm a little more than apprehensive on what to do with Manny if and when I'm in Ireland. I know: crazy cat lady, but I'm kinda freaked out about my options. I have the best cat sitters (The Twin; his girlfriend; and my Mom) in the world, but I really would hate to impose on them for 10 or so days. That's quite a commitment and I do actually recognize the fact that my tried and true cat sitters actually have other things to do with their time instead of hanging out with Manny every single day. How many times can I ask them to drop everything and watch Manny while I get to indulge in some travel time? If they all didn't have cats of their own I would consider considering to ask them (read: bribe them) to let Manny hang out at their places, but its not an option. So, I feel like my last option is boarding my lil orange boy at the Vet's.

The thought strikes fear into my heart.

All I can picture is Manny cooped up in a cage for oh, about 100% of the time acting all depressed and/or agitated. Should he survive his extended stay at the Vet's (dramatic much?) I'm afraid he's pretty much going to hate us for the rest of our lives upon our return from the Emerald Isle. I'm not saying that the Vet wouldn't take good care of him, its just I never had to board Manny before and I have no idea what to expect.

So, blogging buddies, what can I expect? Tell me about some of your experiences with boarding a cat. Can I be all neurotic and ask the above mentioned cat sitters to please, please, please check up on him every few days? Do the cats have to stay in a cage for their entire duration? Did your cat claw you piece by piece when you came to pick him up? Will Manny eventually forgive me?

I might be able to figure out a way not impose on my cat sitting saviors and skip the potential boarding, but there may be a time when not boarding Manny is not an option, so I should know what to expect when boarding.

Do tell.


Lost and Found

I know its been a while since my last blogger post. I've been hemming and hawing about whether to post here or to continue on MSN Live Spaces. I think I'm ready to make the move. Think sticking your toe in a pool, I'm about there. Plus, do you know how hard it is to get a cat in a cat carrier in order to switch blogs? So for now, I'll be double posting on here and MSN.

[Orginally posted on Live Spaces:]

Yesterday, I lost Manny for approximately 45 minutes inside my house.

I'll just let that marinate with you all for a second or two.

Ok, here's what happened. I was just minding my own business whilst doing some spring cleaning when all hell broke lose. I made the unfortunate mistake of vacuuming under the bed (aka Manny's hideout). It's not something I do often because it sends Manny into a tail spin, but I had to do it! I have allergies! I had to get rid of the accumulating dust and fur colonizing under the bed. So, of course, the minute I dragged the vacuum into the room and moved the mattress aside to do some cleaning, Manny bolted out of the room. This has happened before - usually he just finds a temporary hideout until calm returns so I didn't think much of it.

When I finished, I decided to look for Manny and make sure he was okay. I checked all of Manny's secondary hideout locations with no signs of orange fur anywhere. At this point, I enlisted The Husband's help and we looked high and low and in between but the there was no sign of Manny. I called his name, shook his treat jar, I even pulled out the laser toy thinking he would come out to play. Nothing.

I was getting a tad panicky and started jumping to conclusions. I kept thinking he snuck out of the house, even though he hates going near the front door (vet portal). The Husband took a look for him outside while I continued the search inside. I checked closets, cabinets, shelves, behind the entertainment unit - nothing. I was on the verge of hysterics when I remembered the Power of the Fancy Feast Can.

I stood in the living room, popped open a can of feast and heard the faint jingle of his cat collar (score one for the cat collar)! Oh thank the Good Lord that Manny was inside the house, but where?! As the smell wafted to Manny's little nose, I saw him gingerly come out from behind the La-Z-boy. I swore up and down to The Husband that I looked behind the chair. Baffled, I went to pick up Manny and he scooted out of my arms and ran back into hiding, which turned out to be UNDERNEATH the La-Z-boy. How he squeezed under a lounge chair, I'll never figure out. I'm just glad I didn't decide to take a nap while he was under there! Yikes!

I gave Manny a stern talking to and treat for his troubles.

More of Manny and his archives can be found @ http://manohmanny.spaces.live.com/