Writers and Cats... is it true?

Are you a writer with cats?

Yes, many!
12
29%
Only one, but I'd like more.
9
22%
Only one, and that's someone else's.
2
5%
Don't care for cats.
18
44%
 
Total votes: 41
ha
halfbaked
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Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:08 pm Post

Alex,

You sound so like me but I'm both a cat and dog person. And the internet has been a savior when I don't wanta' which is quite a lot.

Iain
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brett
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Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:08 am Post

I can attest from f2f experience that Alexandria is certainly not antisocial, and I wouldn't have known she was an introvert if she hadn't confessed it here. She's friendly, thoughtful, chatty -- to all appearances perfectly social, in spite of her extended experience in academentia.
I'm not surprised to hear about cats liking her. Not just because of her winning personality, but also because the species, being inherently contrary, seems drawn to those who dislike them or are allergic. I've seen it happen often.
There I go generalizing again... Amber's right, cats are too idiosyncratic to stereotype. Mine are at least as affectionate, in their very different ways, as the dogs I used to have. In fact, it's their quirks and slight unpredictability that makes them interesting. Maybe that's one reason why writers, who are professionally curious (in both senses) are so fascinated by them? That and the fact that they so often achieve the kind of placid, guilt-free laziness to which many of us must secretly aspire.

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AmberV
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Wed Aug 15, 2007 3:17 am Post

Cats have a pretty good reason to rip up furniture, too. :)

druid wrote:Swift answer: dog = extrovert; cat = introvert


Well, that would explain that. I score so introverted I make 8/10 introverts look like swingers. You know its bad when they ask you how often you socialise with friends, and you sit there thinking: "Friends?"

And I hate dogs!

But I don't hate extraverts. Well, as long as they stay over on the other side of the room---and they aren't talking as if they are in a night-club when it is dead silent and two feet away from each other. :shock:

And yes, to what Alex said. Just because I have fifty-thousand posts doesn't mean anything except that I have no "life" as the extraverts tend to refer to it, and rather enjoy the sublime and utter abstraction that textual communication affords!
.:.
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Wed Aug 15, 2007 4:26 am Post

AmberV wrote:Just because I have fifty-thousand posts doesn't mean anything except that I have no "life" as the extraverts tend to refer to it, and rather enjoy the sublime and utter abstraction that textual communication affords!


That's why I stayed out of the long thread on iPhones. I can't imagine ever owing a cell phone. To me a day of bliss is when the phone never rings. But I clatter away on e-mail, IM, and forums constantly. Probably this makes me a cat, in intro-textual-version terms.

But hey, Amber, you have friends. Whaddya think we are, chopped liver?

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vic-k
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Wed Aug 15, 2007 9:25 am Post

My Lady Amber,
If I may make so bold, and refer you to the last post in the iPhone Redux and however reluctantly inclined, You you may be to do so, I would willingly sojourn on South Georgia, amongst the penguins with you my lady. I`m a penguin person too.

Your slave
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alexwein
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 12:27 am Post

brett wrote:I can attest from f2f experience that Alexandria is certainly not antisocial, and I wouldn't have known she was an introvert if she hadn't confessed it here. She's friendly, thoughtful, chatty -- to all appearances perfectly social, in spite of her extended experience in academentia.


Ha! I say 'ha' because of the academia reference and because I understand all too well what the reference infers, having spent plenty of time around academic beings. One of the reasons I chose Princeton was precisely because my department does NOT suffer from this malady, all of them being quite socially proficient and many of them being quite active in the world beyond academics, which is most of what we call the world!

And I'm blushing from all the nice words you say about me, Brett. :oops: :)

brett wrote:I'm not surprised to hear about cats liking her. Not just because of her winning personality, but also because the species, being inherently contrary, seems drawn to those who dislike them or are allergic. I've seen it happen often.
There I go generalizing again... Amber's right, cats are too idiosyncratic to stereotype.


Interesting. I always thought it was because they could sense, below the sneezing and wheezing, that I love all critters and really do love cats, despite the fact that I can never have one. One of the saddest moments for me was when I had to give away, hurriedly, a lovely little calico kitten who was so affectionate she slept by my face at night. I was getting asthma attacks and not getting any sleep and had to give her up in a quick way. Very sad to this day.

AmberV wrote:But I don't hate extraverts. Well, as long as they stay over on the other side of the room---and they aren't talking as if they are in a night-club when it is dead silent and two feet away from each other.


Ha again! Reminds me of our cell phone discussion. Ugh. I thought of you, Amber, and all of us who decried those who yell into their cell phones like there is no one else in the world--the other day I had two of these *$$holes around me while I was trying to write. All the glares in the world couldn't seem to shut them up. Now if I'd been a cat, I could have definitely shut them down with the kind of definitive, dismissive look that only a cat can give!

Alexandria
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 10:31 am Post

Dog man.

Not only dog man, but golden retriever man. The last of the line died two years ago. Broke whatever heart I have. She was a loyal and unwavering friend and my constant writing companion (though she left something to be desired as a lapdog, especially when I was trying to use the computer... :) ).

Now I'm racing to complete the current book, so that I can take on and train up her successor(s).

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Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:12 am Post

Thanks to all who posted...

I love dogs and cats equally, but there are times, like now, (third floor apartment, landlord says no dogs, limited time to spend with them) that dogs are impractical.

Because dogs and cats are different. Most people are used to dog ways, and cats then suffer from an unfair comparison.

I don't know why this is. No one gets a goldfish and complains they don't fetch. Yet many here mentioned a cat is not a dog.

Exactly.

Cats are, above all, reciprocal. The amount of affection and interaction you get from a cat is completely proportional to how much affection and interaction you give the cat.

Once you wrap your head around that, cat behavior becomes what it is; cat behavior.

Not poor-substitute-for-a-dog behavior.

In many ways, I find cats superior writing companions. A dog needs to be worn out to sleep happily by one's feet. They are do-ers. They need to be always doing something if their energy is up. The way we always bring to dog to their feet when we get up reflects that. Dogs are happiest doing something.

Cats, by contrast, are actually thinkers. Their energy cycles are some-up, then a lot-down. When I'm driving for the hoop in a late night session, the cats might ask for attention, but it's the kind (sitting on lap, occasional petting) that fits into my needs of the moment.

That, to me, is the great thing about cats. When we are homebodies, a cat, also a homebody, is a great companion.
WereBear

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antony
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:23 am Post

werebear wrote: Dogs are happiest doing something.


That might actually be why I prefer dogs; much as I sometimes complain about being dragged out in all weathers, without the dogs I'd probably never leave the house.

(Actually, I know I wouldn't - I was freelance for two years before we got a dog, and gained almost 20lbs during that time!)

That said, one of the reasons I like sighthounds (greyhounds, whippets, salukis, lurchers etc.) is that they don't take much tiring out, and once they are tired they'll sleep for hours. My dogs literally spend about 18 out of every 24 hours asleep... allowing me to get on with work :)
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alexwein
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:48 pm Post

werebear wrote:The way we always bring to dog to their feet when we get up reflects that. Dogs are happiest doing something....Cats, by contrast, are actually thinkers. Their energy cycles are some-up, then a lot-down. When I'm driving for the hoop in a late night session, the cats might ask for attention, but it's the kind (sitting on lap, occasional petting) that fits into my needs of the moment.

That, to me, is the great thing about cats. When we are homebodies, a cat, also a homebody, is a great companion.


Hi Werebear,

Hmmm, I guess you are referring to some particular breed of dog? I have a very different experience of dogs. My dog is happiest sitting on my lap while I work or nestled next to me, very close. It's what I love most about dogs is the closeness and just being together.

As for cats being thinkers, well, I have to strongly disagree again. While there are some dogs that definitely are not among the brightest of creatures, there are others that are uncanny in their level of understanding and ability to communicate. I see my dog thinking all the time, quite clearly. Same with my other dogs. I've always thought people greatly underestimate the thinking level of most animals, including dogs.

I am not putting down cats or making blanket statements about them either. The species have their definite differences and pros and cons. But I've had some amazing dogs, and not just the small dog I have now. My 72 pound Malamute/Belgian Sheperd mix and I traveled across the country several times by car, and we spent many happy traveling miles together with her sitting close next to me as or with her sleepy head on my leg while I drove. She used to sleep with her head draped over my bent legs at night. She was also incredible fun when tugging on my pants leg and dragging me around the floor. So there is the doing part, but so much more just 'being' together. It's what I love most about having dogs as companions.

So, I understand if your experience is different than mine. I guess I resist blanket statements that exclude my own experience, so I just wanted to give my own, different perspective on the whole cat and dog theme.

Alexandria
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:00 pm Post

Hugh wrote:Dog man.

Not only dog man, but golden retriever man. The last of the line died two years ago. Broke whatever heart I have. She was a loyal and unwavering friend and my constant writing companion (though she left something to be desired as a lapdog, especially when I was trying to use the computer... :) ).

Now I'm racing to complete the current book, so that I can take on and train up her successor(s).


Never had a golden retriever, but when I was a vet tech, way back in the day, they were the most wonderful patients. And friends who have had them love the breed.

Dogs and cats alike break our hearts. They just don't live long as we do and inevitably leave us! My last dog, the 72 lb.er referred to above, was my 'soul-mate' of dogs and I still cry when I think about her, and it's been over 15 years since I lost her (and got the lovely little dog I have today).

I think the bond between people and these critters is just amazing. I wonder at it every time I see a child with a puppy or a kitten, the way these very different species seem to belong together. Me, I've had just about every kind of critter you can have as a pet and then some, including a pet rat, a snake, even 120 mice (not when I had the snake!). Ha! That really made my mother so very happy. Especially when the snake got loose and we never found it. But losing a hamster or a bird, while very sad, just doesn't have the impact losing a dog has had on me. The only thing comparable was the horse I had and then had to sell. Never got over that one either!

Alexandria
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Thu Aug 16, 2007 8:29 pm Post

I like tarantulas. They're especially fun when you can get your kids to like them, so you can send the grandparents Halloween cards of the grandkids with giant spiders crawling up their smiling little faces.
And that, my Liege, is how we know the earth to be banana-shaped.

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Thu Aug 16, 2007 9:54 pm Post

Khadrelt wrote:I like tarantulas. They're especially fun when you can get your kids to like them, so you can send the grandparents Halloween cards of the grandkids with giant spiders crawling up their smiling little faces.


Ha! The one thing I never had--spiders! :)
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antony
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Fri Aug 17, 2007 9:00 am Post

alexwein wrote:Malamute/Belgian Shepherd mix


:shock:

Now that's a lot of dog. And probably makes for a very handsome mix, too :)
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Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:14 pm Post

Alex
I`ve just Googled Malamut and Belgian Sheperd. Jeeezz!!!! She must have been big enough to be your `dancing partner`as well as soulmate.

Must have left a big hole in your life when you lost her. Glad you`ve found a new buddy,though.

Take care
Vic
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