Temp Cat Yearns for the Bennies

With the exception of the three or four hours he spent up a tree yesterday, chased there by Kodi after he foolishly ran away from her, thus triggering her hunting reflex, Temp Cat is doing fine, as you can see. We still need to canvass the neighborhood to see if anyone’s missing him, but I believe Krissy has already scheduled a vet trip for him for shots, deworming and possible detestefying. I say “possible” because Krissy seems to think he’s been previously snipped; I rather think it’s that he’s not yet hit cat puberty. Either way, we’ll find out. And naturally once we’ve paid for his emasculation, then we own him, because if you’re going to take someone’s balls from him, you pretty much owe him lifetime support.

And no, before someone asks, “Temp Cat” is not his name, it’s his current condition. Should the owner location project fail, and post shots and snippery, he will be put on staff at the Scalzi Compound and given a name. Personally I think his name is Robert Paulson, but that’s probably too obscure to amuse anyone but me. Anyway, Krissy has declared she has naming rights this time, and when you consider the fact the other two cats are named Ghlaghghee and Lopsided Cat, this is probably for the best.

In any event, off to writing. If I don’t finish this chapter today, I will have to put my head in the garbage disposal. It’ll be a while before I’m back. Try to amuse yourself somehow.

Also, before anyone notes it: Yes, that’s a bacon wallet package in my “in” box. A gift from a friend. I’m waiting for just the right occasion to use it.

60 Comments on “Temp Cat<img src="https://s.w.org/images/core/emoji/13.1.0/72x72/2122.png" alt="™" class="wp-smiley" style="height: 1em; max-height: 1em;" /> Yearns for the Bennies”

  1. Apropos of nothing: Does it concern you that the mossy tangle of plastic coated convention badges dangling from your lampshade might melt/catch fire/burn the house down? Just a stray thought.

  2. >If I don’t finish this chapter today, I will have to put my head in the garbage disposal

    Whoah there John. Remember what happened last time you made a off-hand statement of intention in a to-do list on the Whatever.

  3. “His name is Robert Paulson. His name is Robert Paulson. His name is Robert Paulson.” Nah, too obscure.

    I will say that Temp Cat looks shifty. A hobo cat is not above ransacking the family jewelry and flitting off to parts unknown, so be careful, and don’t let your guard down.

  4. Personally I think his name is Robert Paulson, but that’s probably too obscure to amuse anyone but me.

    Not so obscure. Maybe you could subtly agitate for TempCat to be renamed “Space Monkey.”

  5. Just because Krissy gets to “name” him doesn’t mean that’s what he’ll actually be called, because cats do have this tendency to dictate their own names. You just keep calling him Robert Paulson (or Space Monkey) and he might just decide that’s what his name is.

  6. T.M. Wagner:

    It’s a compact fluorescent light in the lamp. Doesn’t generate anywhere near enough heat for that.

    Incidentally, it’s the same CFL I put in the lamp more than two years ago, and I’ve pretty much left it on continuously since then. Pretty nifty.

  7. I named our first cat Bob (because I’m allergic and had to have a physical to get prescription meds, and I contend that whoever gets a finger in the butt for the cat gets to name it), and when people would ask why, I’d say that, “His name was Robert Paulson,” and nobody ever got it.

    So I think it’s obscure enough. I’ve never seen anyone else do it.

    And naming him “Space Monkey” would require shaving his head.

  8. He looks so content. Much different look than that first picture. I think your family is owned now. He knows a good thing when he sees it.

    Impressive. You’ve got a posse now.

  9. not to be overly technical, but if his name is robert paulson, once accepted into the compound, he would no longer have a name, then he would become robert paulson again in the unfortunate event of his demise.

  10. We took in a black and white stray cat which I wanted to call Tux, after the Linux penguin, but the name never stuck, and so his name is “Cat”. He’s very friendly — he’ll come when called. I guess the naming of cats is a difficult matter.

  11. John Joseph Adams – John Joseph Adams is the editor of John Joseph Adams Books, a science fiction and fantasy imprint from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He is also the series editor of Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, as well as the bestselling editor of more than thirty anthologies, including Wastelands and The Living Dead. Recent books include Cosmic Powers, What the #@&% Is That?, Operation Arcana, Press Start to Play, Loosed Upon the World, and The Apocalypse Triptych. Called “the reigning king of the anthology world” by Barnes & Noble, John is a two-time winner of the Hugo Award (for which he has been a finalist twelve times) and an eight-time World Fantasy Award finalist. John is also the editor and publisher of the digital magazines Lightspeed and Nightmare, and is a producer for WIRED’s The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. He also served as a judge for the 2015 National Book Award. Find him online at johnjosephadams.com and @johnjosephadams.
    John Joseph Adams

    Does he have ‘bitch tits’ we can’t see in those photos?

  12. amandageddon – She is a slacker of the highest order, a geek of not so much, went back to school to become an even bigger geek and possibly get paid for it. She loves it when a plan comes together.
    Amanda

    He looks about as bored as I feel in that last picture. I wish I could just sprawl out and have a nap like that… Stupid work and the fact that my desk is too cluttered and not big enough…

  13. I dunno; I kinda like “Temp Cat” as a permanent moniker. When I got my cat Stinkyboy, the people at the shelter had named him “Jordan”. He didn’t look like a Jordan (what cat does?) but more importantly, he smelled God-awful. I mean, rancid. He had every kind of parasite and worm and infection and gastro-intestinal problem you could imagine. One skinny little mess of a cat. After about a week with me, I noticed he would look up when I called him a stinky cat and a stinky boy. After two months of medical treatment, the smell was gone but the name stuck. People think it’s unbearably cruel that I call him Stinkyboy but he seems to have chosen it.

    :-)

    Happy New Year, by the way!

    Colleen

  14. Well, I didn’t get the joke about “Robert Paulson”, so I went googling to figure out what was going on. I eventually got it, but there was a somewhat amusing red herring: it seems that a Rob Paulson does the voice of Yakko on Animaniacs. Here he is, singing (in Yakko’s voice, from memory) the names of all the countries of the world, to the tune of what I think is the Mexican Hat Dance. After the Animaniacs-related trivia a few days ago, this seemed like it might have been a tie-in with the current Cat Naming Question.

  15. I agree with Dana: it looks like the cat’s already come to a decision in the matter and you may as well just submit to your new master.

  16. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang's got a telegraph

    Damn, someone beat me to the reference. None too obscure, I think.

    I like Temp Cat. I like Robert Paulson, too.

  17. *giggles at the Robert Paulson reference*

    Why not just name him Meatloaf?

    Or Brad Pitt?

    Although, I have to say, the first name that jumped in my head was DaVinci.

    I guess it’s good that I don’t name cats.

  18. There’s also a Robert Paulson who is a professor of veterinary science at Penn State. Name him that and he’ll take care of his own worms and nads.

  19. Man, I like Robert Paulson.

    (My boyfriend have a thing where if we can’t remember somebody’s name, and stop half way through….”His name is”….the other one will finish it off. Sometimes we don’t even wait to see if the other person really forgot the person’s name.)

    I have a moose named Discount Moose. He is so named because he was one of two IKEA mooses, but for some reason he was on sale for three bucks and the other meese were seven. (I had bought two meese–one for my niece, one for me.)

  20. Dude,

    based on the 2nd photo…you’ve already been opted. You, Krissy, Athena can resist all you wish, but the cat magic has been performed…so far as he’s concerned, you are all now officially his people.

  21. Nah. It’s been proven that cats will accept any food-providing ape for staff positions. You’ve no worries as long as the next food ape (I believe ‘food ape’ in cat parlance is attributable to C.Stross, but possibly he got it somewhere else.) has warm surfaces and plentiful food.

  22. Considering how uncertain his condition is, it’s clear to me that he must be called Erwin.

  23. Is “Temp Cat” getting along with the other 2 cats?
    He looks extremely relaxed and quite at home in your office. Is he partial to your office?
    Does he crawl up in your lap and look for kitty love while your working?
    I think you should call him….
    [ @3##%$%)**#@]

  24. Robert Paulsen is AWESOME. Seriously, when I was kid, my fallback plan if I didn’t become a classics scholar, was to be a voice actor. Oh, and I watched many hours of Animaniacs while in college.

    Yeah, uh, neither one of those really planned out. But voice actors are seriously underappreciated.

  25. Mysteri0 – I'm 30, I work for a diagnostic imaging company as one of the primary IT support people for the enterprise Servers and Infrastructure.
    Dave

    Ha, I was just looking at reading Fight Club again, coincidence…? If you don’t name the cat Robert Paulson I’m stealing it for when I eventually get a house and get a new cat, I had a Temp Cat myself but she was a bit feral and decided that she wasn’t right for the position I was trying to fill and decided to venture forth into the snowy Canadian weather never to be seen again, hopefully she’s okay somewhere..

  26. Well, he looks like he’s out of danger of starvation, anyway. A good thing, whether he gets the Scalzi Compound position or not.

  27. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang, thank you very much

    Is Krissy likely to give it a good geek name, a cool fighter name or a name like Patches or Muffins or Thunderbucket?

  28. Carol Elaine – Spend my days being creative with acting stuff & cleaning up after animals for money. Spend my evenings cleaning cat puke for free. 'Tis a glamorous life.
    Carol Elaine

    Tania, Robert Paulson is awesome in more ways than one. A good friend of mine and his wife bonded over Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain during their dating days. My friend decided that one of the coolest wedding gifts would be to get the voice actors to record their answering machine message. He contacted Paulson and LaMarche (the Brain) through their managers, explained his wish and they came through with flying colors. Ten years later, for their anniversary (on April 1st), my friend presented his wife with an updated message from Paulson and LaMarche.

    Most cool people.

  29. Carol Elaine, what a great story. How incredibly kind and generous. Never mind that is a thoughtful and creative gift. Sigh…

    Thanks, I needed something mushy and uplifting at this point in my day. Now, back to writing.

  30. Tania @ 42

    Voice actors don’t get too bent out of shape about being under-appreciated because they’re also highly compensated. Seriously, its a very difficult field to break into and those who make it make really good money. And most of their gigs consist of showing up for a few hours to tape a commercial and then having the rest of the day off. :-)

  31. Nathan – that’s good to learn. I figured out somewhere in my teens that I probably wasn’t voice actor material (boo hoo), but I still have fun listening for voices.

    From another blog…I’m still impressed with your report of Mr. Stern’s professionalism. That’s pretty cool.

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