HomeCat photographycute cat photosGabriel is learning to watch me work rather than help me – thank God (cat photo)

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Gabriel is learning to watch me work rather than help me – thank God (cat photo) — 49 Comments

  1. What?

    ‘. . . all articles permanently live . . .’

    Good thing I’ve written nothing but PoC-posts!

    ‘To live eternally, poor little soul -not the chief devil could inflict nor endure it.’ [Robinson Jeffers]

  2. Yes – it’s true. We’re chatting away on his website, and it shows up in the ‘Comments column.’ But at least the original Post keep receding further & further, day after day, into the murky reaches of the Catacombs — so we’re not exactly hogging center-stage.

    Years ago, the Chinese discovered their ‘one child’ was a monster. This principle also applies to cats. A colony hastily gobbles up food and looks for more – as I would guess your and Martha Cain’s cats do. But when you have just one, he can turn into an enfant terr-EEEEEEEB-l’.

    There’s nothing more irritating than people who ask your advice and then, when you offer it, counter your every sentence with ‘Yes, but….yes but.’ A head-game, if ever there was one.

    So here I am, a pain in the rear. There’s a reason having cats has robbed me of my resilience to keep bouncing back from the blows they’ve inflicted.

    Nothing has worked in my efforts to care for them. The antibiotic injections failed to suppress for long the bacterial infection in my boy’s bladder. His painful hydrations grew in frequency. The ‘steroid shots’ were useless. Years ago, I remember my mother buying tubes of ointment called ‘Panalog’ for her dogs. She kept buying this stuff for 30 years, yet it never cured their malady – whatever it was.

    Last year, (1) the appetite stimulants I bought for my cats as they sank away didn’t work for long; perhaps for a month. Their effectiveness dwindled, nor could I in kindness keep giving my poor kids these pills when their digestion was failing. (2) Their antibiotic ‘drops’ didn’t do a thing. The germs re-marshaled their forces. (3) The visit to the vet two weeks ago was money thrown away. He had no idea what was wrong with Sid, and recommended ‘Forti-Flora.’ (5) Which doesn’t work.

    Later this morning as I was getting into my car I saw on the floor of the garage a violent splat of yellow vomit – presumably triggered by the oatmeal he ate last night. From the parent’s end? You’re happy for a few hours. And then your chain gets yanked. What to do? I don’t want poor Sid to explode from both ends. His diarrhea is a sufficient drain on his strength. I’ve never known him to vomit before, so assume his stomach couldn’t handle the oatmeal.

    I know I’ve mentioned this before, and won’t do it again, after this. My oncologist-cousin had a teacher who pried loose his students’ grip on their rosy illusion that they could cure anyone of much of anything. Largely a figment, the professor hammered hme. ‘Physician – heal thyself.’ My cousin died of cancer in his 40s. (I know. Am in a blue funk here. People with cancer can sometimes live for years,which used to be unheard of.)

    The last thing I want is to come across as ungrateful to you for your generous time and effort to help Sid – and me too. Because I’m not ungrateful. But sometimes it feels as if there’s a gravitational pull that tells us, time and again, ‘Thou shalt not….’ I did everything I could for my boy and little girl. MB did everything he could for his Binnie & Charlie. And it’s all in vain.

    Like you, I have an entrenched abhorrence for bleached carbohydrates, and wouldn’t think of having white rice or white bread in this house. I eat my home-grown potatoes by the bushel. But no arrowroot, white flour or white cornstarch.) Be that as it may, I’m at loss to understand why a bit of oatmeal would have triggered Sid’s nausea, and can only guess his digestive system is already weakened by bacterial or viral infection, or maybe a liver malfunction.

    As for buying larger cans – Sid infallibly knows when a can has been opened and refrigerated overnight, even when it’s tightly covered. And yes – we’ve reached a point where he’ll eat only a portion of Fancy Feast and pricier cat food. And then he stands on his hind legs and rakes me with his claws until I open more cans. Because of this tactic, a third or a half of the five-six cans I open each day can gets thrown away. It’s not always that bad. But all too often so. After last year’s Descent into the Darkness, I’ve lost the steam to freeze the leftovers and trundle them out into the woods to feed the wildlife, as I did last winter. The rain is torrential and the mudslides are a mess. Which means gobbets of food are flushed down the loo every day. He STILL eats enough, though — but everything must be on his terms. And he’s a martinet.

    All that being said, thank you so much, Dee, for your time and kind efforts on our behalf. You, of all people, who already have dozens of cats to feed, care for and medicate. You’re a two-legged heart.

    • Sylvia, just for the record all articles are permanently live and can be found using custom search (RH column) and the tags – for example, the “Gabriel” tag fetches up all articles about him.

    • You’re welcome, Sylvia.
      Cats digest food eaten within 8 hours. The yellow vomit was likely bile, meaning that Sid’s stomach was empty. Cats do that sometimes. It’s not alarming at all unless it is persistant. The oatmeal wasn’t the cause.

  3. FLASH BULLETIN: Last night he was the best kitty-man ever. It was smaller than a walnut, but I thoroughly cooked, then mashed to a paste a small blob of oatmeal, mixed it into one of his favorite flavors of cat food and he ate up nearly every bit. Scarfed it right down. So here’s keeping the fingers crossed, as the ‘floribunda’ stuff certainly doesn’t work for him.

    Haven’t the slightest idea what Immodium-Loperamide is, nor what it does, but thank you again for any info. Now if only you could help me figure out how to feed him on $25.00 a month max., instead of four times as much. (And yes – I’m as down on dry food as Lisa Pierson, DVM.)

    • We need to apologize to Michael for carrying this out on his site.
      I feel guilty.
      So, I’ll try to be brief.
      I’m happy that Sid ate your mix. Good job!
      I spend a great deal of $$ on cat food, but I feed an enormous number.
      There are several very lean times here, when one or more needs to be vetted or spring is around the corner and the dreaded yearly shots come due for my ferals. These events throw a wrench into the cat food budget.
      What I’ve learned to do is to strech my cat food as nutritionally as possible. That means that I have to start adding small amounts of cooked oatmeal or brown (not white) rice to the wet food. On occasion, I’ll boil chicken to add; but, I have to be very cautious to pick away the skin and any visible fat that would encourage diarrhea.
      As you found with the oatmeal, it and the rice have to be cooked to a consistency that can be finely mashed before mixing it in. The real trick is to never have more additive than food. It won’t work and won’t be eaten. With the chicken, I shred it very well and add bits of it.
      Throughout the year, I prepare the rice and chicken and freeze it in small containers to have on hand. That doesn’t work well with cooked oatmeal. Oats are “johnny on the spot” use.
      $25 per month isn’t outrageous, but you could do better. Unless you’re feeding Sid the 3 ounce cans of Sheba or Fancy Feast, he doesn’t need 6 cans per day, especially if you have dry around for him to graze on. Standard canned Friskies is 5.5 ounces and runs about 50 cents per can. I rarely use those. I buy the Friskies in 13.3 ounce cans for 98 cents apiece. Much, much more cost effective. One third of that can twice a day, maybe lightly covered with dry should be sufficient.

  4. If Sid is rejecting the oatmeal, you can try gluten free flour. I use that too.

    And, no, to anything perfumed for applying to his tender tail, butt and legs. Perfumed means alcohol added and will light him on fire. Plain vaseline is everywhere, even Dollar Stores. The triple antibiotic ointment is in Walmart. I find it in one of those bins they have in the main aisle that have loads of stuff like bandaids, ankle supports, etc. Only 99 cents per tube.

    You may also have a need to know that cats can safely take Immodium (that’s straight Immodium which is Loperamide, NOT AND NEVER Imodium A-D). You will, also, find a generic version in the Walmart bin. The ingredient listed will, clearly, read Loperamide. Again, only 88 cents for a box that I think has 10 to 12 tablets. If you are interested, I’ll write about appropriate dosage.

  5. Again, mucho gracias again, Dee!

    Well, the human race has bottomed out, now that it’s hit on the notion of adding PERFUME to a jar of Vaseline and PERFUME to Ivory Soap. Aagghh! Will search hard for the unperfumed stuff, if it still exists. Had no idea dried poo could have those repercussions, and am grateful for the info. Will also look for the antibiotic ointment and apply it as you have described.

    Right now, he’s rejecting the oatmeal. Am stirring the tiniest smidgin into his victuals, but he still gives me a dirty look & turns away. If you can get your colonies to eat this, it may be because their lives are more active and – a conjecture – they’re less spoiled than Sidney. In common w/my other cats (the last two passed away in 2013 and early 2014), Sid has learned how to manipulate me to the nth. He’s trained me to open five and six cans a day for him – and some of this stuff is pricey – which means he’s costing up to $80-$100 a month just to feed. What can I say? I know of no solution. If he conceives the faintest tinge of dislike for his breakfast, luncheon or dinner,it gets scraped off his plate and flushed down the john, while I keep opening more cans.

    I’m also thinking he’s far from well when he’s this finicky, and have no idea if a cat with diarrhea can live for years. Would probably guess that they do not. Meanwhile, though, will keep on inserting a dab of cooked oats into his meals, hope he’ll become accustomed to it, and hope it will help him.

    No – and you’ll likely laugh at this – he’s my sole remaining cat. When my last two died, I thought I’d be free. I do not belong on this website. Apart from my often lengthy posts, which are welcome on some sites, but pretty much of a no-no on this one, I lack the passionate dedication to cats that the regulars & visitors manifest in spades. Two statements of fact: (1) PoC is a world-class website. (2) My sentiment for Sid is near-zero. I so do not want him. I so, SO do not want this cat. Equally true, I treat him with scrupulous kindness, care immensely about his welfare (think ‘Hovercraft Mother’), and wish to God there were a way to help him recover from this affliction, so he could be placed – though I doubt it will happen – into a home where he’s treated with as much kindness & solicitude as he’s receiving under this roof.

    Thx again so very much for your willingness to help! I appreciate your suggestions more than I can say. 🙂

  6. Howdy Dee –

    ‘Sid is yours. He winds around you because he’s either hungry for food or attention. It’s your obligation to provide both.’

    Will gently resist that pronunciamento. Both are the neighbor’s obligation. I do not want this cat. My belief in reincarnation or an afterlife ranks with my faith in a Tooth Fairy, and right now I want the freedom to travel in the years (or days?) I have left. Not a lot – just a little – say, to California, my home state.

    ‘Secondly, I’m not sure here you live.’ (Forty miles north of the Oregon border.) ‘But if you have harsh winters, you need to keep him inside.’ (Am incapable of neglecting the cat. The temperature in this neck of the woods can get down to 18 F. for a few days, but averages 48+ – it’s much warmer today – during the winter. He has a huge, plastic doghouse elevated on sawhorses in the garage, piles of fleece blankets in his ‘Snuggy Loo,’ and a brand-new heating pat. ‘Make Clorox Cleaner your best friend.’ (He is 100 percent fastidious in using his litter box. The problem is that his rear gets clotted with dried poo, and he resists a gentle sponging off
    .)

    Many thank-you’s for the oatmeal advice! Have a cupboard full of organic oatmeal, will introduce a small, well-cooked spoonful into his dinner tonight and see if he’ll eat it. Greatly appreciate the suggestion!

    • OK. I think I understand. Sid is, actually, a neighbor’s cat who seems to be less than responsible in his caretaking. I think we’ve all had that experience, and I commend you for what you are doing.
      Besides Sid, there is another?

      I understand the goopy and dried poo completely. It’s caked on the tail and, especially, the hind legs. Those hind legs may become raw and sore. If untreated, the leg joints will be devoid of skin and fur and the bones will show. It’s like the acidic poo just eats it away. I go to Walmart and in their 88 cent bins, I buy tubes of triple antibiotic ointment and mix it equally together with generic vaseline (vaseline is great at sicking in the desired areas). I slather up the tail and legs. Then, after about 2 hours, I’m able to wipe away a lot and liberally reapply the antibiotic ointment again then.

  7. Howdy Dee — Am up at library trying to retrieve a couple of e-mails. Am also in the grip of another massive stroke or something – CRIKEY. The garage door is on the blink again. As I said to Ruthie, I have never, never before lived in a neighborhood where I feel surrounded by criminals — but this is it. This is so it. I only wish I imagined something that isn’t so. Managed to get the ##** door shut by a backdoor maneuver, but —oh man. As I also said to her, I always feel that another shoe is ready to drop – and the shoes around here belong to a blithering centipede. Don’t dare leave my car out in the driveway. Gotta get the door to work!!
    ______________________________

    Yes — I KNOW this stuff is supposed to be a great product, and you say it’s worked for your nice little man. Again, don’t know what Sid has — and I’m also appalled at the expense of this supplement, but he’s crazy for the flavor, so I’ll keep giving it to him. But OMG – the flatulence!!

    _________________________________

    As I also banged out in a letter to Ruthie, I’m stupefied with admiration for the PoC-ites and the vast sums of money and time they devote to their multiple cats. Not sure, but would guess you have a fair bunch of kitty-wees. The whole lot of you occupies the opposite end of the spectrum from the characters in my neighborhood.

    As for Sid – he’s just about done me in. Am trying to acclimate him to an indoor life, but he’s stupid as heck. His fault? Of course not. He’s never been in a house in his life – he’s been nothing but systematically ignored.

    Wish you could have seen him when he first showed up at my door — he was a furry skeleton and now he’s about 13 lbs. Be that as it may,last night I played with him – that is, with little Ethel’s pull-toy – and brushed him for half an hour, which he enjoyed. But he’s restless and fidgety. And as I described to Ruth — he doesn’t let me MOVE — he doesn’t let me set one foot in front of the other and walk anywhere. He just twines himself around my ankles….poor man.

    But will keep giving the Fortissimo-Floral powder to him and hope for the best.

    __________________________
    Have a great TG! I wrote to R. to ask her advice on how to weasel out of a friend’s invitation tomorrow. Can’t show up empty-handed, so will have to blow twenty bucks on a bottle of wine or a bouquet. Would love just to stay home, stoke the woodstove and whip out the latest nonsense by Dean Koontz, that potato-chip writer, if ever there was one. But like the chips, who in Sam Hill can put him down?

    Over and out.

    ps Good for you. Don’t know why, but every one of the women in my family were just about old enough to be their husbands’ mothers. They all got along like peas in a pod. And yes — men are physically stronger than women – which is why women’s self-defense ‘karate classes’ are a flaming farce, in my humble opinion. Yet the men drop like flies, while the women outlive them by 20 years. Besides, what’s sauce for the gander, etc. Some of the Hollywood stars, as you’ve noticed, have boyfriends young enough to be their grandsons.

    And yes – you’re right! What has any of this to do with CATS? Need to shape up here!

    • In a nutshell, Sylvia Ann…
      Sid is yours. He winds around you because he’s either hungry for food or attention. It’s your obligation to provide both. I, fully, know the price of Forti-flora. Pretty outrageous.
      But, I have another trick that helps also. Mixing Arrowroot, which is basically a gluten free flour, or cooked oatmeal (my preference) to wet food helps a lot to solidify stools and is highly nutritious. It, also, stretches the food and your budget. Oatmeal isn’t gaseous at all too.
      Secondly, I’m not sure where you live. But, if you have harsh winters, you need to keep him inside. Make Clorox Cleanup you best friend. It’s mine.

  8. Well, it’s another “Wow, what a comment” from me, Sylvia Ann.
    I began using the Forti-Flora that was gifted to me by a very dear friend who was using it with one of her boys with digestive issues.
    I decided to give it a try on my Tiger who has bouts of blasting diarrhea and gas. I had tried everything under the sun trying to get it under control. Nothing helped until now. It’s not perfect, but he has had fewer bouts and with less intensity. He would, literally, cry out when he blasted. I’ve become a believer. But, I’m very much aware that I have to be as consistent in its continued use as I am with L-lysine. Otherwise it’s a waste of time, effort, and money.

    Now, perhaps I should have stuck with an “I” instead of a “we” when I wrote that there was a need for self-acceptance. I don’t see how I could, personally, be happy if I saw myself as flawed or unacceptable. To be clear, I’m talking about myself. I could care less whether others see me in a different light.
    And, you mention men leaving their wives for younger women… LOL!
    Women, sometimes, leave their husbands for younger men too.
    I’ve been with a few men in my time, and none were less than 8 years younger than me.

  9. No need to be sorry, Dee! Nothing wrong in disagreeing. Actually, can’t believe my comment appeared under that post. Tried to transmit it this morning – which it wouldn’t do, far as I could figure, so tried it again, and then there it was in this week-old essay. And compulsive nit-picker that I am, I changed the 2nd version to read ‘it didn’t work for MY cat,’ or words to that effect.

    ‘Forti-Flora’ was glowingly recommended by my new vet and his assistant. But as I mentioned in an e-mail I’ll zap to Ruth if I ever get up to the library in this wind & rain, the Internet has a modicum of info on IBS, a nebulous malady that often evades a diagnosis and a cure (even w/surgery), if I followed half of what I was reading.

    Is that what Sid has? Who knows? The vet said he might have to undergo a battery of tests, and even then they might not know why he has diarrhea. I didn’t realize he had this problem at the time I was trying to foist him off on MB, by the way.

    Sid loves the flavor of this stuff. But it doesn’t stop the trots. (Also read it contains ‘cat digest’ –and how is that obtained? I visualize something hideously cruel.) The nurse also said not to give him canned fish – just canned meats, lamb and poultry. That’s what he gets, and he’s still squirting. Don’t know what will help him. Some days he also has gas-attacks and – for the first time – he gave indications of feeling ill for a couple of hours yesterday. But then he appeared to recover. He’s not fat, but he’s heavy and well-muscled, and has a good appetite five or more times a week. He still has these butterscotch droppings, however – sometimes nearly liquefied – which I take to mean he doesn’t retain his victuals long enough to absorb their nutrients. Can he go on like this indefinitely?

    ________________

    Re ‘wattles’: our poor fur-kids undergo plastic surgery (blapheroplasties [sp] etc.) for sagging eyelids and compressed snouts created by heartless breeders bent on keeping us amused. Years ago, though, I was shocked to see one of our cats when the vet shaved him bare to rid him of some skin itch or other. Young as he was and well-fed, he was a mass of corrugations. A feline Sharpei. But people, for sure, are harder on themselves in this regard than they are on their fur-kids.

    Why?

    Am confessing a dismal truth here: short men, to my mind, are unappealing, though my father, a Barry Fitzgerald lookalike, was 5’2” and an earth-angel. I knew a guy once with silver-screen looks, education and money. But he was 5’3”, the same height as I was, and it totally ruined him, given my bias. Sad for him? Hardly. He was appealing to droves of women.

    Back to the wattles.

    You maintain that ‘we NEED to accept, etc.’ Who is the WE?

    Men can leave their wives for younger women. As Desmond Morris observed, flab is ‘anti-erotic.’ Lovely for her? That might depend on the settlement. Would a hitch-job have kept him around? Probably not. Marriages fall flat with the years. Not all. About half. It’s normal to want a change of scene.

    As for self-acceptance, there are two kinds of people who go through life with minimal suffering, unless they’re in physical pain. (1) Those who don’t sorrow overmuch – or not at all – over the decline and death of others, including their companion animals. (2) The Blessed of the Earth: people who throughout their lives, right up to the end, retain a child’s unawareness of their physical appearance. My grandma was an aerial sprite. It never crossed her mind how she looked to other people. She was no more aware of her structural oddities than a two-year-old. She lived a halcyon life. Sleeveless dresses every summer, into her 90s. (Liz Taylor took care to wear long sleeves.) Shorts on the beach. Then again, WAS she that happy? Her husband was wooing a younger woman when she, my grandmother, was in her 80s, and he was pushing 90.

    I’ve also known lip-pursing folk who enjoy comparing themselves to women whose weakness of character nudges them into wearing makeup and shaving their legs. People who, given their moral stature, pity as weaklings anyone who caps their teeth or resorts to cosmetic surgery. And they’re right. It’s true. The heroes and heroines in our midst are those who triumph over trivial esthetics, who make the world a better place, who love and are loved in return for their intrinsic merits – their honesty, courage and compassion.

    And here’s something every bit as true. Hundreds and probably thousand of surveys have shown that the presence of ‘pretty’ and ‘handsome’ can get most people farther in life more quickly & easily than its absence. Ralph Nader, for one, detested this worldview. But there it is. Skin-deep. Graven in granite. Looks can land you a better job, more frequent raises, more romance (or promiscuity), more everything potentially good. There’s no getting around it. Men adore bimbos. Cantilevered chicks. Would they marry one? Not necessarily. But she’s still a part of his juiciest fantasies. Women flip out for men who pop steroids. Is this fair to the flat-chested, plain-featured billions with pipe-stem arms and hearts of gold? Is much of anything fair? Steven Hawkins [sp] made it. Less than ravishing women succeed in illustrious careers. But people can have an easier time if they start out in life with a pretty face. Like it or not, it opens doors. You disagree? I respect disagreement.

    As for getting old – ‘Rage, rage against the dying of the light!’ wrote the poet. Is acceptance easier than a doomed struggle? Than Joan Rivers’s surgeons and Michael Jackson ‘hyperbaric chamber?’ No argument there.

  10. Jo – this is just bad! BAD that you’ve gone! Miss you, as no doubt everyone else does – and have read and reread, among all the others, your essays on horses. EGADS! You lost me there! Love most critters but ticks, fleas & Bogie-sucking African leeches! But horses?

    Wish you could see little Flora, my pet spider. She’s old as dirt. Have had her for years. Catch and feed her a fly every week or so. She rushes out of her funnel-web, hands outstretched to catch her goody, and then, when she’s finished, carries it back and throws it off the edge, tidy little girl that she is.

    Yet I’m petrified by horses. Have been bucked and trampled by a horse I had when I was six. Pulverized tail-bone. Bludgeoned psyche. The whole nine miles. Several years ago, a friend of mine was riding a horse that suddenly stopped. She slid off her new saddle, flew through the air in this ghastly trajectory, and landed on a pile of rocks. When the medics helped her up, her hand hung off her arm at a strange angle. Two surgeries later, it’s still backwards or something. Admire your bravery, but am puzzled by your affinity for horses.

    Yes – as you say, little Gabby-man is adorable. But pretty? He’s nice, as are millions of others out there. A beautiful cat is Katy/Katie, Helmi’s current portrait. But no doubt about it, Gab is a cutie. Also looks smart. Dead wrong to give him up. Fostering is for the still young who have the resilience to love, lose and move on. He needs to be kept.

    Hope your gorgeous Sir Dabney Figwell and Col. Hush Puppy are doing great. (Heaven have mercy – forgot their names . . .)

    Anyhow, miss you and your essays, and am feeling down & out. Just wanted you to know. Keep writing, and take care.

  11. Let me get this straight…We’re writing about Michael feeling “fattish”…
    So far, we’ve been talking about middle-aged spread, camera adding 10 pounds, plastic surgery, and wattling.
    I have to ask if any of us would be so alarmed by a “wattling” in an old cat so much that we would consider plastic surgery or liposuction.
    We need to accept ourselves as we are. There is no turning back the clock. The best we can do is to stay as active as we can, exercise, and eat right in order to give us the best quality possible.

  12. Not that I have a negative slant on wattles. They were my favorite part of Cluckalina’s anatomy; she used to love sitting in my lap while I played with them. But I paint & draw portraits, and reflexively scrutinize very square inch of a person’s map, including my own.

    People of culture are in your camp. Actually, though, Joan Rivers looked great. Burt Reynolds isn’t that bad either, for women who go for the type. The downside? After her multiple botched surgeries, Hedy Lamarr ventured out of the house only at night. Still and all, why do right-thinking folks take this stance toward p.s. and not toward having their teeth drilled and filled? Another of life’s riddles.
    ________________________________

    Quickie p.s. to Ruthie: Might answer your nifty e-mail today, though it’s storming outside. The librarian said to keep punching the ‘SAVE DRAFT’ tab to prevent the e-mail from wafting off into the ether. Don’t know what she means. Seems when you do that, it keeps snapping you into the DRAFT file. Will try it again, though.

    Pps. Don’t know if you have it over there, but if you do, don’t heave out your money on ‘Purina’s ‘Forti-Flora.’ Doesn’t work worth a bean. Pay no heed to the testimonials from ‘Cindy Lou in Knoxville’ and ‘Wilma in Detroit,’ and all the others churned out – who knows? – by Purina themselves. So far, I’ve thrown to the winds $70.00 in vet fees and $27.00 on hard-core quackery.

    Ppps. Say hi to Jo! Wish I could in person, but don’t go on FB.

    • “Pps. Don’t know if you have it over there, but if you do, don’t heave out your money on ‘Purina’s ‘Forti-Flora.’ Doesn’t work worth a bean. Pay no heed to the testimonials from ‘Cindy Lou in Knoxville’ and ‘Wilma in Detroit,’ and all the others churned out – who knows? – by Purina themselves. So far, I’ve thrown to the winds $70.00 in vet fees and $27.00 on hard-core quackery.”

      Sorry, Sylvia.
      So disagree.

  13. Ha ha if you’re fat then I’m a bloke called Cuthbert! Seriously thats a lovely photo he looks so relaxed you love him don’t you? You can’t give him up can you? I’m not surprised 🙂 enjoy him he’s just gorgeous 🙂

  14. A word of advice.

    Also a question.

    Question: Is that a man wattle? If so – and unless you’re attached to it in more ways than one – you can get it jacked up for $8,000. (Please do not reply with any ‘inner beauty’ pap.) Check out Raquel Welch and her latest acquisition. She’s pushing ca. 76, and looks 30 years younger than he does, and he’s in his 60s.

    Advice: Men of your years shouldn’t be pole vaulting. Running marathon races. Burning both ends, etc. Neither have they the emotional resilience to survive certain traumas. Fostering cats is dandy for youngsters with snap and bounce, but too much to bear for someone in his declining years. You must not give up that little boy.

    • Sylvia, I don’t know what a “man wattle” is but I’ve probably got it 😉

      I certainly would not contemplate plastic surgery. I accept the way I am and strongly dislike any sort of plastic surgery for either sex.

      • Michael, a “wattle” (I believe from watching Ally McBeal) is the slack skin under the chin, just where it joins the top of the throat. Probably what we Brits call a “turkey” neck 🙁

        Glad you’re not tempted down the surgery route. Nothing wrong with aging gracefully, but wanting to stay as physically fit as possible whilst doing so.

  15. I see your house is clean .I see your kitty is well taken care of.Please learn to except yourself as you are.I have starved myself to be skinny for all my life.I stared back to eating about 2 years ago.I gained 30 poundS and now I am much happier and I LOVE THAT SOUTHERN COOKING.

    • Well done Nancy. I used to be slender all my life until the mid fifties and now it is worse in the mid sixties. I will never get genuinely fat because I hate it on myself too much. I can understand how easy it to get fat. I like food 😉

  16. 180lb is not considered fat for a man-but it’s up to you to feel better*
    Have a Very Happy Thanksgiving Michael from Eva_______

  17. Michael-Your big boy Gabriel is [ will be a majestic cat] Love him. As far as your photo goes, if you are near my age then it is time to stop worrying about looks so much and just concentrate on being happy and maybe losing 5 or 10 lbs and only because this will add a few better quality years to our lives*
    Luv^Hugs Eva say’s
    Thank you for the new pic_

  18. Another adorable pic of Gabrielle.
    I still very much believe that he is wise and smart.

    You know, it’s said that cameras add 10 pounds.
    But, there is, also, truth in that pesky “middle aged spread”.
    It’s hard to remember that we don’t have the metabolism that we had in our 30’s.

    I don’t find any aspect of your quarters or your attire strange. What I find sort of strange is that you seem to be in bed a lot.

  19. Michael-

    He is simply adorable! I bet soon you will be able to stop using your scarf to keep you warm. There is nothing better than a furry companion snuggled up with us on these chilly Fall and Winter nights- especially when they vibrate:)

    Gabrielle’s little face could launch several thousand ships! What a cutie pie!

  20. He’s adorable. You’re doing better with him than we are with Pebbles. It just take time and baby steps.

    About the fat…are you a sugarholic or a junk food junkie? I crave sugar and just found the perfect brain trick. I’m losing weight now.

    • I don’t eat junk food (although I like fast food). I eat good food these days but I eat more than I need 😉 This is because I like it. Therefore I burn it off at the gym and it is hard. I push the boat out! I row about 7 kilometres in 30 mins.

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