. . . and thereby hangs a tail

Well, let's just say Mr. Kermie has had a rather unpleasant day. He was in the garage, minding his own business quite thoroughly, when DD3 came out to clean litterboxes. Then, when she headed out to the dumpster, he must have thought, in that little mind of his, "Hey! I will get outside when she opens the door." And he went for it.

Actually, to be fair, 97% of him succeeded.

The remaining 3%, white tuft and all, was amputated by the swinging door as it shut. DD3 had no idea this had occurred, only that Big Bad Kitty had gotten out yet again. She brought him back in the house, and he went running past me, looking as if he had seen a ghost. Now it's clear he felt he'd been hit by a . . . closing door. He seemed to have something hanging from his tail, but then I realized his tail looked a bit . . . abbreviated. What was hanging from his tail was the tail bone. All together now--eeeeeeew!

By this time, he had run scurrying under my bed, a disaster for an injured animal, from the human point of view, because no help can be provided with the cat holed up in the darkest recesses thereunder. But I knelt beside the hidey hole and said very calmly, "Aw, Kerm, come out Honey, come out," and he did. Looking quite befuddled. Like, "WTF happened, Mom?"

I picked him up, and together Sophi and I quickly ascertained that he was missing the aforementioned 3%. Fortunately he was not bleeding much, but we settled him into a bathroom to keep him corraled while I called the vet, and DH kept him company and cleaned up after him. The daughter burst into tears feeling that she had done something horrible to her Kermie. We both reassured her that it was not her fault and that it was amazing it had never occurred until now.

Our vet--booked up solid. The emergency vet in Palo Alto--bring him on in. So a few minutes later, DD3 and I got organized and "encouraged" him into the cat carrier. Drove up to PA and found that it wasn't just about stitches, but rather about a brief anesthesia while they cleaned up his mangled appendage and removed the last bit of the tailbone. We got it all agreed upon and they said to return at around 2 p.m.

We tried to jolly ourselves through noodle soup in PA at ZAO, and then in a stationery store. DD3 hoped to find a greeting card that demonstrated to her English teacher that E.B. Brownings' "How Do I Love Thee?" poem is Hallmarky. She found it but wasn't satisfied that it looked sufficiently silly. I found paper clips in the shape of dog bones (a little collection of mine is of various types of paper clips). We went to get a coffee and then were called to the vet's to get Kerm a little early.

He had on this gorgeous pale blue collar, like a small lampshade worn around the neck (makes one think of the dim bulb that this particular lamp shines with, but that might be too harsh). He had a three inch beige rat tail where his fluffy and beautifully tufted white-ended tail used to be. As accessories, he brought home a bottle of antibiotic drops and six pain med syringes to be squirted as needed into his cheek pouch if he is vocalizing (read, "howling") or going at his tail bandages. I was a little dubious when they mentioned that he needs to wear the collar for 14 days, and that the stitches need to stay in for 14 days (in other words, he can't remove them himself with his own surgical equipment). We shall see.

As we left the vet's, I opined on the possibility that this little accident might remove his interest in running out doors to get outside. The people in the vet's office smirked a bit and one of them said, "It will be interesting to see if it has any effect on him at all." Weird--it's as if they know Kermit!

I'll leave out the part about the effect all this has had on our wallets. But Kerm is one of our children, and of course children must be cared for and nurtured, even when they hurt themselves doing things we've told them a hundred times before not to do.

Lastly, when we brought him home, he was really ready to get out of that cage. Percy with intense curiosity came right up to give him a thorough sniff-out, while Pippi stared in absolute horror, eyes wide and dilated, backing away as if from a deadly viper, and her tail as bloated as I have ever seen it. She has only in the past half hour or so started to think that perhaps Kermit is just Kermit, minus a few percent. Cleo, true to her sisterly ways, is just taking it all in stride, and it will be no time at all before she gives him a thorough, tender bathing. [Memo to self: keep her from licking his bandages!!]

There is no moral to this story unless you like the idea that we should live our lives without cats. I don't understand that concept in the least. :^)

Have a pleasant weekend, and if you have cats, be sure to catch the door in time.

Angels in blankets; updates on UFO's

This is my friend Pat's baby, Angelina, being held by Pat's mother, who is visiting from Toronto. Angelina is aptly named, as I have never seen a baby who looked so much like a little angel. (My girls looked a bit more like Winston Churchill as infants, as I remember it.)

I took the baby blanket when I went to visit her and Pat last weekend, and Pat seemed to really like it and was very sweet about it (even though it will have to be handwashed--I'll never do this again!). She also emailed me the other day that Angelina had "used" her blanket for the first time and liked it. :^)

I've now got the front panel of the Katrina tank done and am suffering from finishing paralysis. Should I just go for it with mattress stitch? Should I try to pick up stitches and do a three-needle bind off on each side? I gave up on the idea of sewing with the machine, since the Knitting Novices advice I got (which sounded likely) was NOT to do that, since it wouldn't be stretchy. When I get that settled and done, I am ready to do the arm holes and neckline part, which doesn't scare me, since I know the pattern now. But somehow the side seams are keeping me at bay.

Almost finished with another longtime UFO, the Deanna purse. I have tried several things, none of which seemed right for the handle. Finally got some more Malabrigo (while up at Gold Country with the family, in a lovely shop in Sonora called By Hand Yarn) so I knitted up the strap last night while watching Thank You For Smoking (I liked it!). Felted it, and it is now drying out on the paver stones. When it's done, I will use the machine to sew it to the body of the purse. Then, a magnetic closure (first time, some help from my engineer DH), and it will be ready to gift.

I'm noticing that I seem inclined to that knitters' peril, the desire to start another project before finishing the first one(s). But as long as I am sticking to the stash for that purpose, I think it's OK. I have worse issues. ;^)