It is a truth universally acknowledged, that an extremely minor blogger with a serviceable website must be in want of a fluffy kitten.
However little known the feelings or views of such a kitten may be on his first encountering a family, his instant effect on ratings is so fixed in the lore of social media, that he is considered as a key marketing tool in the battle to claw ratings from the cyber ether.
“My dear Mr Shrewsday,” I said to my husband one day, “have you heard that there is a cat in the next village who has given birth to a litter of fluffy kittens?”
Mr Shrewsday replied that he had not.
“But there is,” returned I, “for we have just popped over to your mother’s and she has told me all about it.”
Mr Shrewsday made no answer.
“Do you want to know if any of them are booked?” I cried, impatiently.
“You want to tell me, and I have no objection to hearing it.”
And that was invitation enough.
Although, because I am not Mrs Bennett, (though I am perilously close) I could quite remember the particulars. A litter of kittens emerged from a respectable mother in the neighbouring village. There were quite a lot of them: one tortoiseshell, one black, one silver and a gaggle of gingers.
Actually, strike the respectable part. I have no idea how these small furry assets were conceived. The mother could have had one reckless night on the Victorian roof tiles with some one-night Casanova, for all I know. I’m sure I shall be regaled with the details when I pack the kids in the car and drive off to inspect the offspring.
And though it must be acknowledged that any small fluffy kitten goes viral with the ease of free tickets to Disneyland, I exaggerate the whole kitten-marketing thing.
We lost the angriest cat in the world, one who made a consummate art-form of fury, just a few months ago. She had been with us for 18 years, since Mr Shrewsday and I were young newlyweds. She had developed methods of torture of which the Spanish Inquisition would have been proud. And when it was time for her to go and for us to relinquish the small ball of turbulence which had agitated the heart of our household for so long, we wept.
The dog went into mourning too. He took us by surprise. We had him down as a callow soul who would do anything for a grubby deer bone and a pungent pile of fox poo, and this he may be: but he, too, cried on his cushion, when the penny finally dropped that the cat was not coming back. He hates being the only animal in the house.
The children began an unsubtle kitten campaign. And it could not be long before the proverbial dominos toppled, and we began to actively recruit a young blood to join our tight-knit, high-performing, noisy, chaotic team.
Yes, it will mean cat litter and smelly carpets. But it is hoped the new arrival will befriend the dog, jazz the children, dominate my husband and practice mind control on me. I have missed the feline iron paw in a velvet glove.
It is time to once more guard the litter tray zealously from the dog, to hear the clatter of the cat flap. To polish off the close-up lens more zealously than even Mr Demille. To weigh up names, and speculate wildly as to how the dog will ever cope with training a new kitten.
It is time for a new player in the company.
56 thoughts on “Paws and Prescience”
good luck. may you all be chosen by the kitten who will bemuse you all by not filling the gaps but create its own places in your lives
They make the rules, Sidey 😀
i’m glad you will have the camera ready. kittens weave their way into all sorts of places, not just hearts. 🙂
The first time we saw KitKat, our old cat, she was about five inches long and headbutting another kitten from the vantage point of a wine rack 🙂
Fab blog – I am quite undone at the sight of that beautiful ginger kitty!!! 😀
Living, as you do, with the luxuriant fluff of Mr Wonderful, MissMojilberry, I can understand that 🙂 Not our ginger kitty, but a stunt kitty hired for grualling illustration purposes. the real Kitty Shrewsday should make an appearance Wednesday 🙂
Awww, I bet yours is even cuter when it arrives. I was looking at kitten pics of Kimbo and Mr. Wonderful yesterday – I wish they could stay that size forever! Hope to see lots of pics of the real ginge when he or she arrives!!
My dear Mrs Shrewsday, I wish you luck in your perilous endeavour.
I leave my card to acknowledge this superior post.
Thank you, Mrs Bud.Delightful to have you visit, as always.:-)
What a cutie – look forward to following how he/she makes their mark in the Shrewsday family.
Alas, the above cat is a pilfered cat, Rosemary: first pictures of the ACTUAL cat will, I hope fervently, be available on Wednesday…
i wondered how long you’d all hold out before a replacement was sought!
We are not strong souls, Wanderlust. It was only a matter of time.
I think you managed for longer than I have in the past – but I suppose that could be put down to its having to be a collective decision. Enjoy the kitty … 🙂
Love the way you wrote this!
*Thinks: Thanks, Jane Austen :-D*
A new burst of joy is about to descend upon your fair household. let us hope that the newbie does not try to dominate Master Mac. Looking forward to the pics of the new one.
Will hasten to take some tomorrow, Lou!
So is the picture of the latest addition to your crazy team? Cutie. So Shrewsday family is back to being complete. 🙂
Nope, that’s just some stunt cat, Jas.The REAL feline Shrewsday will be revealed shorty. Provided I can get him to say cheese.
Bring on the gaggle of gingers!
Now to choose which one, Marco!
All of them ha ha ha!
How exciting is that? Looking forward to a new personality in the Shrewday Mansion and hearing all about it.
I expect the kitten posts will write themselves, Penny…
How true to give a nod to the power of a feline presence in creating blogging buzz! We are all suckers for a kitten! And then as the kitten moves into maturity we are held captive to its wily ways. You’ve already created great interest with the reminder to beware the carpets and the litter box patrol. You find inspiration in the most interesting of places, dear Kate. I was thinking the other day that perhaps Maddie needed a kitten…I was a little undone with her befriending that mouse! Debra
Maddie befriends anything, Debra. A regular St Francis. Found her spider whispering this morning.
And fleas. Do not assume that your ginger is female, my sister in law’s ‘Lola’ was very much a handful. And male. 😉
Thank GOD for frontline and the kitty snip, IE 😀
I can’t wait to meet the new Shrewsday!
We’ll send him to Lou’s party, Andra…via skype or sum such newfangled modernery.
Lou would be thrilled.
Excellent idea, we’ll have virtual kitty litter in Queen A’s office for the newbie.
Not doubt the folder has been already created for future kitty musing posts coming down the bloggy chute. Kittens like puppies always seem a good idea at the time, but then the moments come ‘what was I thinking’ only to be replaced with ‘were so lucky’..
Rapturous excitement here 😀 can’t wait to meet itself!
i hope you will share tales (tails?) from the audition process — and images!
Are you bringing him home on Wednesday, or just trying to choose? An impossible task I imagine. i have been chosen by Cat, and rescued NotCat, so my choosing skill with cats has not been tested, but I like to think Cat chose well, and I am glad I did not turn my back on NotCat.
There is nothing quite like being ruled by a furry thing with a leg at each corner and a will of iron.
Is anything more fun than a new kitten!? I’m so envious (but don’t tell my 9-year-old feline). Take care you don’t come home with two or even three. It’s all too easy when they are so small and so adorable. Can’t wait for pictures!
Dear Kate, I’ve been away from blogging for over a week (due to being under the weather with asthma). So what a wonderful delight it is to come to your blog today and discover that you are considering bringing a long-haired “fluffy” feline into your home. I remember your posting on the death of the cat with whom you’ve lived for eighteen years. And I know how hard losing a animal friend can be for it’s happened to me many times. I’m a real cat lover and writing about cats is one of the joys of my life. But to combine “Pride and Prejudice” with your decision is a stroke of literary genius!!!!! Thanks for this entertaining and rather splendid posting! Peace.
Looking forward to meeting the new little bundle of fun and fur, Kate! I’ll send a quick “Wewwo!” from Spudley too, although I don’t think she’s keen on other cats herself!
That orange pile of fur pictured above is adorable.
Kate, I wish you the best in your search. In the past month, we now have a grandpuppy, Riley (oldest daughter’s family), and another grandkitty, Ernest Hemingway (youngest daughter, her husband and their other kitty, Princess K.C.). We have 2 cats. We got Jean-Louis and Reggie from the shelter about 3 years ago – and are delighted with them.
Oh, how FUN! Nothing like a kitten (or rabbit/hare/bunny) to cause smiles to erupt on otherwise somber faces. 😀
The ginger is too cute!
I loved this post, funny, sad and clever. The kitten is getting a great home.
Thanks, Tinman. It is not an entirely conventional environment for a kitten. Let us not forget that my husband tucks the dog up in underpants each evening.
Jane would be quite proud of your tongue in cheek opener, Mrs. Shrewsday.
Oh, I would have given anything to meet that woman. Along with the rest of the world, of course. In the kitchen of her house they have quills and pens to write messages honouring the house. Someone wrote: “Dear Jane, I’d have married you.”
Our new cat should be joining us next Thursday…. 🙂
We shall have to compare scratches.
You’re going to be writing all these wonderful new pet posts…
My new pet posts ( fingers still crossed for rehoming) are never going to have your style, or Jane’s. Ah well 🙂
That is the prettiest little kitten I’ve ever seen. A total poster-kitten if there ever was one! Good luck. I thoroughly enjoyed this blog.
Brilliant opening, but you already know that 🙂 This makes me want go adopt a cuddly kitten! Missing the cats we had to leave behind when we made the move to the big city and apartment living.
Hard to leave them behind, Madhu…
Special thoughts and love to you all, including KitKat. Jina has not returned and I know exactly what you mean about missing the “feline iron paw in a velvet glove”…exquisitely expressed 🙂 So happy to discover your beautiful new bundle of “mind control” though!
Thanks, Naomi. So sad to lose someone as special as Gina. The dogs look like bundles of fun, though…
My husband & I cried @ McDonalds reading this entry. Sad, sorry saps that we are, we too have lost & loved animals. Thanks for sharing your journey