Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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January 11, 2008
By: Kevin Drum

FRIDAY CATBLOGGING....The truth is, I still haven't spent a lot of quality time with the new camera. I owe you better. But here's this week's catblogging anyway. On the left, both critters are waiting patiently next to the food bowls. They do this every night when we start making dinner noises, in the apparent belief that if they sit and stare at the empty spot on the floor, food will magically appear. Oddly enough, they seem to be correct.

On the right, Inkblot celebrates Marian's birthday by striking his usual majestic pose in a box that her sister sent earlier this week. Everybody's a winner when someone has a birthday in this house!

Kevin Drum 3:09 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (80)

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Comments

Domino seems to have gained a lot of weight. Is Inkblot her role-model?

Posted by: Bill K on January 11, 2008 at 3:12 PM | PERMALINK

I love how they're color-coordinated . . . one black-on-white and one white-on-black. Very stylish.

Posted by: kc on January 11, 2008 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

Jesus Christ, but your cats are huge, Kevin! No offense, but when they sit around the house...

Posted by: junebug on January 11, 2008 at 3:15 PM | PERMALINK

Jesus Christ, but your cats are huge, Kevin!

Now, junebug, everyone knows the camera adds 10 pounds.

I must agree, it does look as though a kitty treadmill wouldn't hurt.

Posted by: bigcat on January 11, 2008 at 3:19 PM | PERMALINK

Geez, at first I thought those were the water bowls and they'd swallowed the food bowls.

Posted by: steve duncan on January 11, 2008 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

Thank you so much for posting these Kevin...they make my little velvet plump one seem downright slender by comparison!

Posted by: Winnie on January 11, 2008 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Domino can barely button his tuxedo jacket!

Posted by: Madame Defarge on January 11, 2008 at 3:26 PM | PERMALINK

... everyone knows the camera adds 10 pounds.

Yes, but isn't black supposed to be slimming? (That wasn't a subtle racial appeal -- really!)

Posted by: junebug on January 11, 2008 at 3:28 PM | PERMALINK

You don't owe us better pictures, you owe the critters. Talk about unflattering angles - they look - ahm - a little large. Perhaps more technique will take away the extra 10 pounds the camera adds.

And your cats wait patiently for food? Humh. What are they dogs? Mine can meow so loud one would think he never gets fed. Don't even ask what happen when I bring out the diary. I am surprised you can't hear him.

Posted by: ET on January 11, 2008 at 3:30 PM | PERMALINK

Smudge does the same thing, except in the morning after he has heard the garbage disposal working. Food seems to appear magically for him as well. Do your cats drink water out of their cupped paws?

Posted by: corpus juris on January 11, 2008 at 3:31 PM | PERMALINK

Cat Wheel

Maybe we could pass the paypal hat to raise the $? Then there's the problem of motivation though.

Posted by: Bruce the Canuck on January 11, 2008 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

I didn't realise Domino had such large white spots.

Great pictures - great cats. I do look forward to Friday cat blogging.

Posted by: phoebes on January 11, 2008 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

Time for a kitty fitness program at the Drum household

"All animals except Man know that the ultimate purpose of life is to enjoy it" - Samuel Butler

Posted by: daCascadian on January 11, 2008 at 3:40 PM | PERMALINK

All Michiganders should write in Inkblot in the upcoming primary. Pass it on.

Posted by: Glenn on January 11, 2008 at 3:48 PM | PERMALINK

I think in this case, the camera adds 18-20 pounds. (But we love 'em anyway, because they are cats.)

Posted by: Angela on January 11, 2008 at 3:54 PM | PERMALINK

My goodness Domino has gotten, um, "fluffy", she's cutting quite the Rubenesque figure these days... Nice to know your guys are well fed Kev!

Posted by: greynct00 on January 11, 2008 at 3:57 PM | PERMALINK

I love the pictures, but uh, they are looking a little bit 'fluffy' these days. Too many Christmas treats, perhaps? They are still majestic, though, lol.

Posted by: Susan on January 11, 2008 at 3:57 PM | PERMALINK

Yesterday some commenter accused me of being a silly octagenarian who can do nothing but coo at cats and dress them up in silly costumes and only post inane things about Inkblot running for prez.

I can't find the post now, not certain where it is. Anyway I went home in a bit funk, a bit surprised that my sarcasm - about crocheting Inkblot a fanny pack so he could carry his tissues with him while he was campaigning - was not appreciated.

Last night I thought carefully about resigning as Inkblot's campaign manager. But one look at that face today and I just can't help it .......

INKBLOT FOR PRESIDENT '08.

And just for the record, those look like normal sized cats to me.

[That mean-spirited post was deleted, because the moderator is Inkblots state chairperson here in Blogsylvania...--Mod]

Posted by: optical weenie on January 11, 2008 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

Wow did you wash Inkblot with the colors? His fur is looking a lot pink in the portrait to the right.

...or your camera's white point is overcompensating for the green upohlstery in the background?

and how does one spell upohlstery?

Posted by: Ferris on January 11, 2008 at 4:16 PM | PERMALINK

At least these cats won't be taking up space in the local gyms this January, before disappearing come next month.

And, anyway, petting a fat cat is much more pleasing than petting a skinny one.

Posted by: Yancey Ward on January 11, 2008 at 4:17 PM | PERMALINK

Try turning the camera off complete Auto and look at white balance settings. Try shooting another example of pink kitty by selecting the white balance setting that matches the lighting (fluorescent?).

And, yeah, jeebus, put them on a diet!

Posted by: gummitch on January 11, 2008 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

First of all, happy belated b-day to the lovely Marian!

And Kevin, if food appears every time your kitties stare at the bowls, they must be doing, um, an awful lot of staring these days...

In the shot of Inkblot, he seems quite pleased with himself. Did he swallow the gift?

But yes, they are incredibly adorable!!

Posted by: sullijan on January 11, 2008 at 4:32 PM | PERMALINK

kevin,
i laughed at the pictures,and even harder at the comments, but who am i to be haughty,i have a 98 lb samoyed, but he is all white, helps a bit.

Posted by: steve on January 11, 2008 at 4:35 PM | PERMALINK

Hey, let's write Inkblot in on the California ballot, too -- our primary's not til February!

Posted by: AnnieCat on January 11, 2008 at 4:38 PM | PERMALINK

Love this blog and look forward ridiculously to Friday cat-blogging and truly they're beautiful, but no joke -- PUT THEM ON A DIET. You're shortening their lives by letting them be so heavy. There are any number of great brands of cat food (Wellness is one) that make a good diet dry food with all the necessary nutrition and then some. If you feed them that once a day and a LITTLE wet food, they'll be happy and much healthier. Sorry to play mom, but it's important.

Posted by: dalloway on January 11, 2008 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

Here's a good page for cat weight control (and the main site is a good site generally for pets):

http://www.thepetcenter.com/imtop/catweight.html

Posted by: sullijan on January 11, 2008 at 4:47 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, your cats are huge.

Ever thought of Lipo for them? Do cats even have Lipo?

Posted by: MNPundit on January 11, 2008 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

"everyone knows the camera adds 10 pounds."

So there's like 4 cameras on her?

(Just kidding Kevin)

Posted by: Joshua Norton on January 11, 2008 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

Just curious - do they each wait before the same bowl every day or does the first one to arrive get to pick? If the latter, does there seem to be any preferred bowl or does the winner just grab the nearest? The peer reviewers at the Cambridge Journal of Cat Ethology want to know.

Posted by: fyreflye on January 11, 2008 at 5:17 PM | PERMALINK

Speaking as a veterinarian: check out the cAtkins diet. Honest. Cats are made to eat low-carb, hi-protein diets, and dry diets are anything but. The hi-carb kibble does not trigger the satiety center in the brain, and so they just keep eating. At least, that is what I learned at a recent continuing ed meeting. Conventional wisdom for pet diets evolves, just as it does for human diets.

That said: your kittehs are fat.

But I love your blog.

Posted by: ixnay on January 11, 2008 at 5:25 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, them's some flabby tabbies.

Posted by: IanY77 on January 11, 2008 at 5:38 PM | PERMALINK

It's just a few extra holiday L B's. I know how they feel. Do they make NurtiSystem for kitties yet? If not, give them time. They probably will.

Posted by: Joshua Norton on January 11, 2008 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

Hey Kevin,

I enjoy your catblogging, and I know learning a new camera can be a right pain. If you have any questions about the camera, you can send me an email.

Posted by: Michael R on January 11, 2008 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

What a beautiful piece of artwork you have posted.

Reminds me of Botticelli.

Posted by: david in norcal on January 11, 2008 at 6:10 PM | PERMALINK

As an admitted cat-spoiler, I must say one of my cats is much bigger than Inkblot (for Prez!) or Domino.

We did the easiest thing with her, we adopted the stray kitten living in our woodshed and brought her indoors. The results are inconclusive as yet. Squirt (the tub) is not quite interested enough to get off her fat ass and play long enough to make a difference in her shape. On the other hand, once in a while the food dish is occupied by someone else.

Posted by: bigcat on January 11, 2008 at 6:11 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, you might want to check the color registration in your camera. On my monitor, Inkblot is black and white on the left and black and pink on the right.

Posted by: anandine on January 11, 2008 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK

I'm with anandine. 'Blot is pink on my LCD monitor.

Posted by: IanY77 on January 11, 2008 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

Domino seems to have gained a lot of weight. Is Inkblot her role-model?

No, Fats Domino is.

Posted by: Thumb on January 11, 2008 at 6:25 PM | PERMALINK
Everybody's a winner when someone has a birthday in this house.

Hmm. Sounds like everybody's happy, too. Congratulations.

Posted by: little ole jim on January 11, 2008 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

FYI, according to a popular science article a few years ago, nearly all cat coloration can be explained by changes in 9 alleles.

The basic ur-cat is a tabby: black and agouti (a translucent hair that was first described on the agouti animal) striped.

One allele changes the agouti to black, which gives you a black cat.

Another changes black to orange, giving either an orange tabby or an orange cat.

Another makes the stripes blotches, which means either calico or piebald blotchy black and white), depending on the other alleles.

Of course, all this makes sense only if you believe in evolution.

Posted by: anandine on January 11, 2008 at 6:28 PM | PERMALINK

I love your cat blogs and always check in on Friday. But now I want to know who made the beautiful quilt behind your couch, and can you show us the whole thing?

Maybe your cats are a little pudgy, but beautiful anyway.

Posted by: Fran Clark on January 11, 2008 at 6:40 PM | PERMALINK

Geez, at first I thought those were the water bowls and they'd swallowed the food bowls.

It would have been especially entertaining if there were some canary feathers laying around on the floor there.

I hear all of this talk about dog whistles, I wonder if there are any Cat Whistles? I googled it, but people are just asking the same question I am-no products. Maybe they exist, but they are useless as in trying to herd cats is useless. Hmmm.

Posted by: Doc at the Radar Station on January 11, 2008 at 6:54 PM | PERMALINK

I guess "Kitty, Kitty" works better than a cat whistle. When I was a kid we had a cat that we named "Kitty". We would go "Kitty Kitty" at it, and other kids would ask us what it's name was, and we just told them "Kitty".

Posted by: Doc at the Radar Station on January 11, 2008 at 6:57 PM | PERMALINK

Happy Birthday Marian!

Posted by: Steve W. on January 11, 2008 at 7:03 PM | PERMALINK

optical weenie,

[That mean-spirited post was deleted, because the moderator is Inkblots state chairperson here in Blogsylvania...--Mod]

Actually, that mean-spirited post was deleted only because the poster thought better of it and asked the above moderator to remove it, persisting until the poster saw that it had been removed.

And if you're wondering, optical weenie, why your ridiculous descriptions of Hillary as "crying every time she's asked a tough question" (she wasn't, and she didn't) and "having the vapors" (what the fuck?) provoke strongly negative responses in others...I would suggest, graciously this time, that a little less time spent talking to cats and a little more time spent talking to women might be a good thing. Cheers.

Posted by: The Poster on January 11, 2008 at 7:31 PM | PERMALINK

OOPS! Feathers!


moar funny pictures

Posted by: Scotia on January 11, 2008 at 7:44 PM | PERMALINK

The Poster,

If I may speak for Optical Weenie, very gracious of you to rescind your original post. Seriously.

By the way, Inkblot for President!

Posted by: bigcat on January 11, 2008 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

Jeez, where are the fat acceptance folks when you need them?

Anyhoo, for those joining us late, both cats are on a diet. Our vet had us switch to Hill's r/d a year ago, and Inkblot lost about five pounds. Still overweight, but he's a big cat so he's not quite as overweight as he looks.

Domino, however, has gained weight on the Hill's. She's definitely a pudge, but I'm not sure what to do about it. I'm not really a believer in extreme measures for pets, so I think she's just going to remain a pleasingly plump cat.

As for the camera: I usually adjust the white point when I shoot, but sometimes I forget and sometimes it's just tricky because there's a combination of different lights. In this case, the lamps in the background are CFs, so they turned the background green. I adjusted this in Photoshop, but didn't notice that I'd turned Inkblot pink in the process. However, I just readjusted the white balance, so Inkblot is now back to his normal non-pink self. Just refresh your browser to see.

Posted by: Kevin Drum on January 11, 2008 at 7:55 PM | PERMALINK

Inkblot looks white to me.
However, both are the working definition of Fat Cats...

Posted by: Diana on January 11, 2008 at 8:46 PM | PERMALINK

Stop dissing the kitties! Most of what you see, I suspect, is fur. They've just put on their winter coats -- very stylish.

Even down here in balmy San Diego, our Turkish Angora fluffs up his ruff, puts on his winter coat, and looks as if he's gained 15 pounds but there's not all that much cat in there under all that hair.

Posted by: Steve on January 11, 2008 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

my god, I thought I had a fat cat. And fat cats are cool, they keep you warmer at night. See it took me quite some time to realize that chubby was just a fast eater and then started to hover his brother's. No more short weekend get aways and just plopping some food down, Kitty sitters it is.

Posted by: larry L on January 11, 2008 at 9:19 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin - Congrats on Inkblot's weight loss!

About Domino - diet foods like r/d only work if you limit the caloric intake enough. Some cats, like mine, can wolf down enough r/d to still gain weight.

If you get the r/d amount down to point X (which your vet can tell you) where the calories can't go any lower and she still doesn't lose weight, then you may need figure out what the heck is wrong.

Or do the January gym membership specials include kitties?

Thanks for catblogging.

Posted by: Rebecca on January 11, 2008 at 9:23 PM | PERMALINK

Well, I have one vote over here for the pink Inkblot. (Of course that vote comes from a three year old girl whose favorite toy is a pink stuffed orangutan.)

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on January 11, 2008 at 10:54 PM | PERMALINK

Yer house is kinda tilty.

Maybe you shouldn't let both cats sit on the same side of it.

Posted by: pjcamp on January 11, 2008 at 10:55 PM | PERMALINK

It is either the new camera, OR you are feeding those cats too much!! I know one has been on a diet, hopefully it was the camera angle. Beautiful cats, love Cat Friday.

Posted by: JWC on January 11, 2008 at 11:07 PM | PERMALINK

Well what we did was just reduce the amount of food we gave our cat and he's now just a little heavy but he's a bigger cat so it's natural.

He still have lots of energy and loves to play so it's pretty clear we're not starving him.

Posted by: MNPundit on January 12, 2008 at 12:12 AM | PERMALINK

faaaaaaaaaaat! :)

Posted by: logicat on January 12, 2008 at 12:16 AM | PERMALINK

If the cats are entirely in-door cats, they're probably not spending enough time chasing mice and birds.

Posted by: The Other Chris on January 12, 2008 at 12:26 AM | PERMALINK

Don't know if it's something you did or the 4th double Woodford on ice, but the pink kitty seems to have been fixed.

Posted by: IanY77 on January 12, 2008 at 12:31 AM | PERMALINK

I would like to see larger photos. If the photos in the blog page could link to full-sized ones (or at least bigger ones) that would be great.

With my first two cats, I did as my mother did with our cats when I was a kid: split a can of wet food between them morning and evening, with a bowl of dry on the side for nibbling (and a water bowl, of course).

I learned, however, that my cats didn't care for the wet food as much, and concentrated on the dry. As active outdoor cats they were fine with that, and so much the easier for me. When I got the kitten, though, he was pretty much open to anything edible, at any time. He also stayed fit all his life, indoor/outdoor.

Posted by: steverino on January 12, 2008 at 7:01 AM | PERMALINK

The Other Chris: "If the cats are entirely in-door cats, they're probably not spending enough time chasing mice and birds."

Are you offering to bring us some? Or, as we suspect, are you content to just sit there and state the obvious?

Posted by: Inkblot & Domino, "Kats of the Keyboards" on January 12, 2008 at 7:08 AM | PERMALINK

Inkblot and Domino-I'm so sorry that Kevin let you read these comments. They must be so hurtful, and it is easy to see that you two are intelligent and sensitive cats.

Since everyone knows that the camera adds pounds, why not just stick with that story. I'm sure that in real life, you two are lean, mean, feline machines. "It's the camera, stupid!" should be your mantra.

(Tell Kevin that if he's going to take pictures of you, he must photograph you at more flattering angles.)

Posted by: Susan on January 12, 2008 at 7:23 AM | PERMALINK

Off topic I know, but thanks for not feeling you have to fall back on posting links to You Tube videos for content. I have a fairly slow DSL connection. Waiting for all the links on other sites to load irritates me beyond description. If I want to watch videos, I'll go find them on my own, Thanks.

Posted by: jojo on January 12, 2008 at 9:24 AM | PERMALINK

On my home monitor, the two pictures look different shades of white, so I guess I should ask IT for a new monitor.

Posted by: anandine on January 12, 2008 at 9:32 AM | PERMALINK

Your new camera seems to be suffering from severe barrel distortion near the center of the frame. If you place the cat towards the corner of the frame I suspect it will look more like a normal weight cat.

Posted by: B on January 12, 2008 at 10:26 AM | PERMALINK

When the cats are too fat, put the rats on a diet.

Posted by: little ole jim on January 12, 2008 at 10:26 AM | PERMALINK

How are your floors supported?

Posted by: jerry on January 12, 2008 at 12:50 PM | PERMALINK

Get them a gravity feeder and feed them a good quality American or Canadian dry food. If cats can eat any time they want, they control their own weight.

Posted by: doug r on January 12, 2008 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK

Are we sure those are cats? Isn't it more likely they are basketballs in cat suits? :)

Posted by: Radix on January 12, 2008 at 2:40 PM | PERMALINK

doug r - That's only true of some kitties (and some people). Many kitties don't seem to have that control. There's a lot of research into the genetic and biochemical reasons why some cats (and people) naturally control their food intake better than others. The hope is that someday someone can make a lot of money from a safe and effective weight control drug.

Posted by: Rebecca on January 12, 2008 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

As a Michigander I'm happy to vote for Inkblot, but does that mean I'm actually casting 10 votes?

Posted by: bluestatedon on January 12, 2008 at 3:33 PM | PERMALINK

To paraphrase I Can Has Cheeseburger:

Kittehs 2, Bowling Balls 0

The new camera's pictures are sharper, but the kittehs are still getting blurrier!

We love them of course.

Posted by: Joanbeach4 on January 12, 2008 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

Put them to work - make them do some vacuuming or window-washing. That will shed some pounds.

Seriously, though, cats are like humans. Some have a slow metabolism or are genetically disposed to being heavy. I've had a lot of cats in my life, and some of the fattest ones ate very little.

Posted by: Speed on January 12, 2008 at 6:37 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, I am an admirer and a fan of your site. The Cat Blogging on Friday is for me a welcome respite in a weary world. As to the beautiful beasts, yes be concerned about their weight - playtime is essential for health and happiness. Don't let their weight become the focus. I was always concerned about my Sara, recently having crossed the rainbow bridge at the age of 15. In the last 6 months she lost 50% of her weight. She was in no pain, ate and drank well up to the day she went to sleep and left me. I miss her daily.

Posted by: PCMULKEY on January 12, 2008 at 8:55 PM | PERMALINK

It looks like your houseboat is listing. I suggest sending one of the cats to the starboard bow.

Jesus Christ, we're mean. I know your generally thick-skinned (and it looks like your cats are too) but jesus we sure are mean. Take some time out with the cats. However, if you put one on your lap make sure to do some leg exercises. Deep-vein thrombosis pulmonary embolisms are serious issues.

As the owner of a 17 pound siamese I'd suggest a few weeks of flattering macros.

Posted by: B on January 12, 2008 at 10:57 PM | PERMALINK

B:As the owner of a 17 pound siamese.

Hah! My Squirt (a Siamese, as well) is 22 pounds. My experience with that breed was that they were so neurotic, they never got over about 7 pounds. What did I know?

Posted by: bigcat on January 13, 2008 at 1:59 AM | PERMALINK

...they're both pregnant? Geez...

Posted by: Gordy on January 13, 2008 at 6:51 AM | PERMALINK

anandine on January 12, 2008: On my home monitor, the two pictures look different shades of white, so I guess I should ask IT for a new monitor.

I noticed the same thing, but I suspect Kevin updated the picture. I happened to leave PA up on my office machine when I left the office Friday. When I came in today I hit refresh. Inkblot had miraculously changed from pink to white!

Posted by: thersites on January 13, 2008 at 1:42 PM | PERMALINK

those cats are several light years over the
richter scale obscenely fat.

your attitude seems to be that you don't give a damn.

that's not what i would have expected from you.

wschneid25

Posted by: wschneid25 on January 14, 2008 at 1:39 AM | PERMALINK

You guys are indeed mean! What if Kevin stops cat-blogging due to your ridiculing the beloved subjects?

Shall we see some pictures of YOU, you finger-pointing perfectionist bloggers? Then the truth would come out who needs to shed a few pounds......wouldn't it! Wouldn't it! LOL

:)Signed, a fat poster.

Posted by: Zit on January 14, 2008 at 9:28 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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