Felines come in infinite cat-egories

Felines come in infinite cat-egories By Bob Karolevitz I never knew there were so many different kinds of cats. Cat Fancy, the feline-lovers magazine, has dozens of them � page after page of catteries, all vying for space in the classified ads.

There are Bengals, Egyptian Maus, Himalayans, Savannas and Ragdolls. Also included are Russian Blues, Scottish Folds, Singapuras, Turkish Vans, Abyssinians, Muchkisns and Japanese Bobtails.

Of course, not mentioned are alley cats, inbred barn cats, feral cats and throw-away cats which always find their way to our place.

Believe me, I now have a new appreciation for Phyllis's Baxter and Bailey, which also don't have a special cat-egory (pun intended).

She could have gotten a pair of those big-eared Devon Rexes or a couple of bald Sphynxes, which are advertised as "Naked, and Proud of It!"

But who wants to cuddle a hairless kitten? I'll take normal cats, hair balls and all, compared to those exotic breeds.

Besides the seemingly endless opportunities to buy Bombays, Manxes, British Shorthairs, Somalis and Snowshoes, etc., the publication features lots of other things, too.

There are cat toys and games, cat collectibles, cat gifts and even cat outfits � like tuxedos, cowboy garb, police uniforms and dresses (for female cats, I hope).

I can just see Baxter and Bailey in soldiers' clothes like a couple veterans of the Iraqi War � but I wouldn't want to put them on. They'd claw the heck out of me.

A couple of classifieds caught my eye. Purr-fect Growlings advertised catnip toys, while It's the Cat's Pajamas offered an "internationally acclaimed, luxuri- ously appointed cat-boarding facility."

And I almost went ballistic when Phyllis presented me with the bill for cat litter!

It is obvious that the world is full of feline fanciers. Daughter Jill has her Wally, all 17 pounds of him, and Jan has Kiki, a nondescript survivor who came to their place under a pickup hood.

Phyllis (at this writing) also has two outdoor cats she calls Misty and Pickles. The latter is a clone of one of our earlier animals by the same name.

Me? I'm not one of them. Mostly I condone cats because I'm out-numbered. I have learned to live with cat hairs on my dinner plate; cats staring at me while I dress; cats curled up in the wash basin; and cats drinking out of the toilet bowl. Because I don't want to be left out of the conversation, I also read Cat Fancy magazine � which, incidentally, has been around for 40 years.

I only hope that Phyllis doesn't read all the classified ads it carries. There's a whole section on Norwegian Forest Cats; and, being a Norski, she'd probably want one of them.

Now my questions are quite simple. Do we feed them lutefisk? And do they meow with an accent?

Uff da!

© 2005 Robert F. Karolevitz

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