kespernorth: (lolcats)
An emerging threat in the war on kitties on drugs, cubes of the freeze-dried flesh of the O. nerka, or sockeye salmon, have become popular as a so-called 'designer drug' among the upscale professional and suburbanite cat populations. Far removed from common catnip, the so-called 'Orange Crack' is instantly and highly addictive. Worse yet, this drug is not yet scheduled by the FDA, so it is commonly available in petshops throughout the Pacific Northwest. The only barrier to entry is the high price the drug commands, necessitated due to the expense and rarity of obtaining the fish from which the drug is processed, as well as the processing cost itself.

Street names
Orange Crack, Cubes, Dust, Salmon Treats

Onset properly begins before the drug is even ingested, as the Orange Crack is olfacto-active: its effects are so potent that, like catnip, a reaction can be brought on simply through smell. The subject's senses become both heightened and confused, and the subject is so overwhelmed by this sensory input that he or she may become confused as to the location of the drug itself. Eventually the subject is able to zero in on the drug cube and consume it. This leads to a brief euphoria that dissipates almost instantly, leaving behind a profound desire to consume more and more of the drug. If the subject is denied access to another dose, she will begin to mew insistently, sometimes resorting to distress vocalizations in hopes of inspiring pity.

After a time the worst of the addictive need will fade, but can reappear at any time, including the middle of the night or during human mealtimes. Denial of additional treats can then lead to desperate acts including vandalism, theft and destruction of property as the subject attempts to gain access to the drug.

An unusual facet of this drug is that it seems to improve feline memory (see Social Consequences).

Cats have been known to accidentally gain access to very large supplies of salmon treats, usually as a result of accidental carelessness on the part of humans. Dosages of 10-20 grams and higher are known to induce nausea and vomiting, anxiety and dehydration. A secondary effect brought on by dehydration can also occur, namely the induction of feline idiopathic cystitis, an irritation of the bladder lining.

Social Consequences

The most obvious social consequence is the disruption in the 'status quo' of expectation between cat and human, which can lead to stress in the cat-slave relationship. The cat comes to expect a steady supply of Orange Crack, not just as a reward for good behavior as is the case with other treats, but in association with other behaviors as well. Examples include:

* Hanging off the human's leg.
* Batting at the lid of the drug packaging.
* Waking the human up with a single sharply pointed claw, applied to the big toe.
* Pacing agitatedly over the human's sleeping form and howling pitifully.

The status quo can be adjusted, but only through diligent effort (and the use of sleep aids or narcotics) on the part of the human.


There is no known treatment at this time. All attempts to substitute a less-addictive alternative, or to wean the subject off the drug entirely, have failed.


Apr. 30th, 2010 09:47 pm
kespernorth: (internets)
Saga is very big on texture. Everything she interacts with must have an interesting texture - the food she eats, the surfaces she hangs out on, everything. And one of the oddest textures she enjoys is crepe paper. Her very favorite spot right now, which she is inhabiting at this very moment, is a large box that a pair of boots came in, which has been liberally stuffed with lots of nice, thin, crinkly paper for her to play with or snuggle up in. She likes to rest her head at the edge of the box and watch the goings-on in the room dubiously before tucking her head in the corner and snoozing. She looks very cozy, but I can't help but feel like it would be preferable to sleep on something a little more well-padded.

Like the World's Biggest Cat Bed, a large circular sofa with a high wall encircling one half of it, which is totally encrusted with orange cat hair as it is one of her other default sleeping spots.
kespernorth: (lolcats)
She says:


I came home to discover this message left waiting for you, the internets, on my laptop.

I will leave discovering the meaning of this message as an exercise to the reader.
kespernorth: (Default)
kespernorth: (lolcats)
A: This isn't mess, just so you know, I've just got it out so that I can index it.
B: I thought the mew had already indexed it?
A: That's different. This is going on the Internet.
B: But she is a search engine! Doesn't she automatically put things on the Internet?
A: Her database is proprietary.
B: Oh, so she's like Lexis/Nexis. How do we get a subscription?
[ profile] day_the_elf: Salmon treats!
B: Ah, okay.
A: Her metadata is really hard to decode, though.
B: Yeah. And her API is really poorly documented!
kespernorth: (Default)
Dear internets,

I am dead. After several weeks of working nonstop 12-to-18 hour days, my immune system crashed and I was sent home sick on Saturday. After going to the doctor I learned that I had pneumonia. I'm feeling a bit better now but I'm still somewhat feverish and decidedly divorced from reality. Hooray!

In other news, Saga is very dubious about the Roomba. She alternated between glaring at it and giving me this look of, "Are you SEEING this? There is a THING! In MY HOUSE! And it is MOVING and MAKING NOISE! Why in Bast's name are you permitting this?!"

And there was lots of !! BIG TAIL !!.

My brain is empty. I think I'll fill it up with soop.
kespernorth: (Default)
Cat: (stands in front of picture of her)
Allyson: Saga, you always block your picture!
Bjorn: Maybe she is a bad block and needs to be reformatted.
Allyson: Are you a bad block, Saga? (picks up cat)
Cat: (mews loudly in protest, making thrown-cow noise)
Allyson: (turns cat upside down) I have reformatted her!
kespernorth: (Default)
So our downstairs neighbors have recently made our lives hell by complaining to the condo association board that we are extremely loud. Apparently anything other than sitting quietly in one spot is far too noisy, and they've made us feel frankly rather like prisoners in our own home. The real problem, of course, is that there seems to be absolutely no sound insulation between our floor and their ceiling. We can hear everything our upstairs neighbors do too, we just don't make nearly so much of a big deal of it.

Anyway, one of the things they accused us of was carrying out illicit construction activity, as they complained of hearing things that sounded like tools being dropped on the floor. I was at a loss to think of a source for these sounds, as we certainly haven't been doing any construction, until I got home. I was sitting at the computer when Saga dove off a countertop, landing on the floor with a gentle thud. And then I realized... "Saga! You are a tool! A dropped tool!"

So now whenever she jumps down onto the floor, we give her a pained look and tell her not to be a dropped tool.


Oct. 30th, 2006 10:19 pm
kespernorth: (Default)
I just had to share this photo...

Click here for cuteness. )

watery doom

Aug. 8th, 2006 05:11 pm
kespernorth: (eh?!)





Okay, I'm awake. What the fuck is that noise?


...That's the fire alarm, isn't it.


There weren't any notices about an alarm test today were there? No.


I really hope that isn't just our alarm going off and waking everyone up. I guess I'd better put some pants on and find out.


Nope. It's the whole building.


There's no smoke, but I guess I'd better get dressed and go outside.


I make it to the hallway.


Oh, fuck. The cat.

Some of you may be wondering why, at this point, I stopped and went back for a housepet, risking my life and limb for something which is not, well, not to put too fine a point on it, human.

You have to understand the very deep and special relationship that Allyson and I have with our cat. Namely, we love and adore her with an obsessive, all-consuming passion, and she ignores us except when she wants food, or treats, or something to bite. The more she ignores us, the deeper our obsession grows. We will stare at her adoringly for hours, like some poor benighted otaku trawling the web for pictures of his favorite actress, knowing that no matter how long we look or how hard we try, we will never, ever get to touch her. We will never know the ecstasy that is feline companionship. We can only dream of what it must be like to have a cat seek you out, jump into your lap and ask to be petted. We can only watch in awe as she drapes herself luxuriantly around the apartment and moves from pose to pose, finding new configurations of impossible, unattainable beauty. If you try to touch her, she will slither out of you grasp more effectively than any ten beefy bodyguards could hold you back from the object of your affections.

We are pet papparazzi, and Saga is our Princess Diana.

With that understood, let me continue my tale of woe. That's how the day started: with a horrendous klaxon sounding as I struggle into a pair of sandals and stumble around the apartment trying to find the cat, who has of course hidden herself somewhere utterly unknowable after being startled out of her wits by the horrendous noise. I grab her cat carrier out of the loft storage area and start moving things around in it, trying frantically to find her. But I can't see her. Crap, where is she? Is she under the bed? In the couch? I toss the cat carrier on the floor and practically hop off of the loft in my haste, not knowing if the building is going up in flames. It's been at least three minutes now.

I grab a box of her treats and start rattling it as I look for her. Under ordinary circumstances, she would be summoned almost instantly by this sound. But she fails to appear, so I start frantically hauling boxes out from under the bed in hopes of spotting her. No luck.

Five minutes, now. I can hear people running in the halls.

Minute six has me flipping the couch over in case she's hiding in its lining. Nope.

Minute seven and I'm back up in the storage area, the only place left where she could be, rattling the box. I still can't find her. I go back downstairs, seriously concerned at this point, and check under the bed again. As I do so I see her running down the loft steps in the corner of my eye, making a beeline for under the bed.

Minute eight: Grab cat by neck. Hold all limbs. Stuff into cat carrier.

Minute nine: Run out the door. Make it to the door by minute ten. Note that my feet got slightly wet along the way. Is someone's sprinkler going off? Crap.

There's a group of other residents assembled outside, talking in bemused tones. Saga starts mewing frantically at the sight of strange people, and a nice English lady tries to talk to her and tell her what a pretty cat she is. This of course freaks her out even more, and her mews increase in volume and stridency.

I look around and note that while all of the cat owners appear to have brought their cats, none of the dog owners have theirs. The annoying white Samoyed puppy downstairs is not present, though its owners are. The lady with the German Shephard has no German Shepard with her.

One man holds his bicycle protectively.

"So what's going on?" I ask the lady standing next to me. The cats in her carrier are silent, looking nonchalant in counterbalance to Saga's terrified attempt to compress herself into a paste at the back of her carrier, eyes wide and staring as she mews in distress.

"I'm not sure. I don't think there's a fire. There's water streaming down the walls in 114, though."

"Could be the sprinklers are going off in 214 or 314," says one of the other residents. "The people in those units aren't home, though."

"Has anyone called the fire department?"

"The alarm system called them already."

"But it's been like fifteen minutes, shouldn't they be here by now?"

"You'd think."

A woman pulls out her celphone and calls 911. A couple of minutes later, we hear sirens approaching, and kitted-out firemen troop into the building, prepared to do battle. A tall, slender gay couple join us all outside. "It's terrible. Our whole place is flooded. Water's coming out of the ceiling, down the walls..." I'd already seen a damp patch on the hallway carpet.

A fireman taps at the fire alarm system's control panel, and the horrendous noise finally ceases. A moment later, one of the firemen comes down with the verdict:

"The water heater in 214 let go. We've shut off water to it. There's no fire, you can all go back to your units if you like." My eyes widen: 214 is my next-door neighbor. Shit. He was looking for a job a few weeks ago. I sure hope he found one; otherwise he's going to be in a world of financial hurt.

Following the crowd back inside, I glance into 114, as its door is sitting open. The floor looks like an uneven tennis court after a hard rain: big deep puddles, water dripping from the ceiling. I can see curling, damp artwork bleeding on the walls, already a total loss. The two young men who live there are trying to get their plasma TV off the wall before more water drips down on it.

I go back to our condo and let Saga out of the hated cat carrier. She flees immediately into the safe confines of the couch and will not leave, not even for treats. It will be hours before she emerges after this trauma. This afternoon, I saw a small note slipped into the crack in the door to 214. I wince in sympathy, imagining the horror that awaits my neighbor when he gets home from work. I learn later that water was even running into the electrical and telco closet in the garage. The damage, while nowhere near as severe as a fire could have been, is not trivial. I await the community association reports with trepidation, and comfort myself with the fact that the cat, at least, survives.
kespernorth: (dance)
I got a digital camera today. It's a Canon PowerShot SD450, and I'm pretty happy with its size and performance. We took a bunch of pictures of the cat. Two of those below the cut, as well as a shot of my workspace at home.

here there be pix0r )
kespernorth: (eh?!)
So I think the cat might really be insane.

Allyson couldn't find her when she got home at first. She eventually turned up in the couch.

Not on the couch.

Not under the couch.

In the couch.

Curled up in the lining of the couch, as if it were a hammock.
kespernorth: (eh?!)
When I lived with Dan and Kate, I spent a few happy hours playing Black & White on Dan's computer.

I took particular, childish delight with throwing cows about the landscape. Your giant hand would come down and sweep up these cows, and you could hurl them for quite long distances without harm. And they would go "MooOOOOOOOOoooOOOoooooooooo...!" in a most hilarious fashion.

I wonder Allyson suggests that that is how cats and other small animals feel when they are picked up: like those poor thrown cows. Perhaps Saga feels like a thrown cow when she makes that petulant MEWuuu! sound she makes when she doesn't want to be disturbed.

Yes. My cat is a thrown cow.
kespernorth: (Default)

four more iterations of comfort )


kespernorth: (Default)
Kesper North

February 2011

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