I have decades of evidence I’m not much of a housekeeper but it doesn’t mean I don’t use workarounds. The kitchen absolutely sparkles with cobwebs and dust when the sun hits it right, but that only lasts a couple hours and people don’t drop by then. I often notice the shower could use cleaning but by the time I’m in it I don’t have my glasses on. I don’t buy white shirts anymore because the neck gets stained turmeric yellow for no reason I can think of. I hope it’s not a medical issue. What with one thing and another I tend not to get around to cleaning things in a timely manner, and then forgetfulness kicks in.
Until the cat took up hobby-vomiting. I don’t even know why she does it, really. She had no interest in it for the first twelve years of her life and now it’s this whole thing. Anyway I do clean it up if I see it, since the alternative would be to acquire a dog, and we’re cat puke people, not dog puke people.
At least she doesn’t do it on the bed. She self-burritoes under the blankies and I guess it doesn’t occur to her to hork once she’s wrapped up in there. Instead she is rather partial to our fancy rugs, and they’ve got a lot of pattern and color, so sometimes the barf stays camouflaged until it’s peelable.
I love our rugs. But they were a design challenge. This isn’t one of those expansive open-flooring houses where the fancy area rugs float like continents in a sea of hardwood: where you can stand in the room and shade your eyes and point and say “Land, Ho!” and sure enough there’s the shoreline of your rug, way over there. A house like that, you can forget what’s in one corner by the time you walk to another corner. Here nothing is very far from anything else and my rugs are more like flotsam.
I can recognize a decorating job done well. I think I have a good eye for it. I just don’t always know how to make it happen on my own. And it added a degree of difficulty when I got this jones for Tibetan area rugs. One Tibetan rug is a statement. Three of them is a bunch of people yelling over each other. And in our limited floor space, these rugs will only be about a foot apart.
I bought one to go under the piano a long time ago and it’s splendid. Much later I got one to go under the dining room table and I like it a lot too. They have nothing in common except personal vivaciousness, and they’re both opinionated, but they’re not the same colors. This is an L-shaped area with aggressive rugs on either end and what would have to be a demilitarized zone in the middle. I needed another transition rug but I had no idea how to pull it off. I was stumped.
But I kept looking, and finally found a Tibetan rug much plainer, with a plain field and border and the tiniest bit of jazz in the corners, and it even looked like it might go with both of my competing rugs at the same time, but I couldn’t be sure, and I had to order it from across the country.
And to my utter amazement, it showed up, and it all came together. With the curtains and the upholstery and everything. It totally looks like adults live here. I’m astonished every time I see it; I get impostor syndrome over it.
So this middle rug, this little Switzerland of a carpet, why, that’s the one our cat Tater decided to decorate the other day. Lavishly. Right in the center. And I am telling you: I almost missed it. If it wasn’t for a little kibble topography, I might not have seen it at all. It was exactly the same color as the rug. You could almost get away with leaving it, except that’s my adult zone. And I’m proud of that adult zone.
This does mean my adult zone has a carpet the color of cat puke, but I can live with that.
I have one truly great rug that I found online for a ridiculous deal, like $120 for a hand tufted 8 x 10 wool rug. I don’t know what I’m gonna do when it wears out. It really ties the room together.
You’ll have to get a whole new room.
I used to be a very methodical homemaker. Now that I’m getting older and slowing down, I’ve become more lackadaisical about it. I “dust” by waving the duster over the thing I’m dusting, like a magic wand. “Dust! Be gone!” I no longer mop each room after I vacuum — only the more heavily trafficked ones. Fortunately, Paul cleans the bathroom and kitchen. I, too, don’t notice if the shower is clean or dirty, because when I’m in there, I’m not wearing contacts or glasses. And, yeah… no white clothing for me either, because I do the cooking, and it doesn’t matter if I’m wearing an apron over my clothes. Somehow grease will manage to get past the apron onto my shirt, like a culinary version of the “magic bullet” in the Zapruder film.
No cats or dogs here, but I have parrots, and their poop leaves indelible stains on our floors. Especially when they manage to poop FROM their cage onto the floor outside it, and I don’t see it until cleaning day. I don’t know what’s in that shit, but it reminds me of the saliva of the Alien in the movie of the same name.
Our wooden floors have white spots that will not come out, and the finish on them is LONG gone.
We only have one rug — under the piano, to dampen the sound when Paul plays in the middle of the night. No curtains (we’re surrounded by trees, and a lot of people don’t even SEE our house, so no privacy issues.) All that would only give me something else to clean… or, more likely, not clean.
Wait just a doggone minute, you just said “I no longer mop every room after I vacuum it.” I mop once in odd-numbered years.
“Sometimes the barf stays camouflaged until it’s peelable” is a classic cat puke cleanup method.
It works, if you don’t have a dog, which also works.
Under the middle of the table is prime puke positioning. Extra points if you can spatter the chair legs. Everyone needs a hobby, and our three have gotten rather competitive about it. When we hear, “Hrrk, hrrrk, Hrrrrrrrork!” in the middle of the night, we just sigh and pretend it isn’t happening, It’s easier to wipe up in the morning when it cools down. And maybe, if we’re lucky, a meteor will hit the house before we have to get up and deal with it.
Who was it that said a great alarm clock would be the Horking Sound?
I guarantee that if I have a 2 x 3 rug and 1,000 square feet of bare floor, the cat will puke on the rug.
Tater didn’t puke at all until she was about fourteen. It’s a late hobby.
Absolutely classic!; Peelable cat barf; we have all been there!!
I’ll bet I’ve missed some, too.
My father had a large black poodle named Mookie (after the Mets player Mookie Wilson — my mother had loved baseball). One weekend my Uncle Ba Ba was visiting and he managed to let Mookie steal an entire hoagie sub. I learned about this a little later in the day when they came to our house for dinner, and Mookie promptly barfed up a truly gargantuan pile of — well, ’nuff said. Of course, on the living room carpet.
“It was an Italian sub,” Uncle Ba Ba explained, verifying the causative matter.
“I’ll take care of it,” he said. “I’m good at this. Get me a paper plate and a spatula.”
Everybody’s good at something!
Boomer would routinely eat as much people food (and no other) as someone would give her. The neighbor loved to give her a plateful of biscuits and sausage gravy. We saw her knock at the front door (oh thank you) to come INSIDE, dash into the kitchen, and hork up the whole plateful. We both were just commenting that it was more than she possibly could have kept in her stomach, and then she took a step forward and DID IT AGAIN.
My dog, Sam preferred to puke on rugs, quilts, blankets, my jeans, in short anything that was on the floor that wasn’t bare floor.
She made a big production of her pukage, pumping her rib cage and narrowing her eyes as she summoned up her stomach contents.
I heard her winding up one day and ran out into the living room in time to scoop her up and put her on the bare floor. She let out a huge belch, glared at me and stomped off to contemplate her revenge.
After she died, I discovered that she’d been in the habit of peeing on two antique rugs.
Our motto is “we can’t have nice things”. With multiple cats, I don’t even attempt good rugs. If it’s not puke, it’s hair (or hairball puke, which covers both bases), dingleberries, the occasional urine “accident” (yeah, right), and the even more occasional dead critter (if you haven’t stepped in a gutted chipmunk in the middle of the night, you haven’t lived). I have waterproof covers on the couch and the bed, due to the propensity of our little darlings to want to hurl where the humans like to recline. And occasionally I’ll wake up to the one who likes to sleep on me winding up to yak in my face. Now THAT’s an alarm clock, I tell ya!
I have not stepped on a gutted chipmunk in the middle of the night but it’s surely one more point in favor of keeping your cats indoors.
They are allowed on the screened porch, which critters are occasionally unfortunate enough to gain access to. So even though the cats are not allowed to roam, they still score the occasional prize.
My Lola is coming close to her 14th birthday and I have learned to listen for the sounds of pre-puking and shoo her outside, into the back porch, not truly outside, but lately she has taken to pooping in odd places as if she can’t make it the extra few feet to her tray. I’m very glad I have no carpets!
Larry would poop wherever she happened to be when the poop came out. Never in the box. Next to her food dish. Anywhere. She did not care.
We included a fellow we’d recently met to join us and some other friends for dinner, oh it’s been 50 years ago now. We had a cat at the time, and still do, a different cat, but I digress. It was a *large* cat and entirely white. He didn’t shed much, no more than a bushel basket of hair a day, and it wasn’t *everywhere*, just most places. As we were about to take our seats at table, this fellow took out his handkerchief, unfolded it and carefully covered the leather seat of the chair with it. He leaned forward through the entire meal, so his back never touched the chair. It was I could do to keep from horking up a hairball on him, and he was never invited back. I might add that there are hundreds of blogs, websites, videos, etc. devoted to the delights of our feline companions and their finely honed talents for horking in our shoes, shedding, blending into/enhancing our rugs & bedspreads, or my two monsters’ favourite, tracking soiled litter/poop all over the damned house (!) while I have yet to see in 50+ years a single blog, website or post celebrating our fastidious dinner guest. I’m not sure if his reputation doth proceed him, or not?
He wouldn’t make it five minutes in here.
It’s been a while since I laughed so hard!
Excellent! I KNOW you know whereof I speak. And only here can we get an educated discourse on pet puke.
As cat lovers, my wife and I can really relate to your post. They seem to find the most inconvenient spots to puke if it’s not on a rug. One of our cats liked to make deposits behind a corner computer desk, through a triangular space behind the monitor where it could hit the floor in a spot almost impossible to reach. The first time we discovered this my wife said, “judging by the carbon dating, it’s been there a while.”
My favourite pet puke story though is from my friend Ron. He had a big yellow lab that liked to eat scraps when Ron was cleaning salmon after a fishing outing. His wife told him not to feed the dog fish guts, but sometimes Ron just couldn’t resist the longing look on the dog’s face. One evening after a delicious salmon dinner with friends, everyone was sitting around the fireplace in the living room with the dog lying on the rug. Yep. The dog got up, assumed the familiar position and promptly horked up a pile of fish guts. Ron slept in the doghouse that night.
Being expert pukers is a dog’s heritage from its ancestors. (Today wolves bring home meat to the pups in their stomachs, and serve it to them in the obvious fashion.) I can’t explain the cats.