Two Years of Scamperbeastery
Posted on November 1, 2017 Posted by John Scalzi 24 Comments
Two years ago on this date Krissy, Athena and I went over to a neighbor of my mother-in-law’s with the intent of getting a kitten from a litter his cat had birthed. We ended up getting two, since they were small and also the kittens had clear affection for each other. The kittens became the Scamperbeasts, famed of blog and Twitter, and individually Sugar (the gray one) and Spice (the orange one).
It doesn’t particularly feel like two years have gone by, I think in no small part because the Scamperbeasts are relatively small adult cats, smaller than Zeus is, or Lopsided Cat or even Ghlaghghee were, so to me at least they still seem kittenish, or at least adolescent. They still live up to their names — they get the zoomies at unfortunately early hours and will suddenly bolt into and out of rooms for no discernible reason at all. They haven’t slowed down a bit.
They do have distinct personalities. Sugar is the affectionate one, who daily parks herself across my chest while I’m trying to, you know, write, and who loves to be held and petted, but tends to be shy with strangers. Spice, on the other hand, is friends with everyone but not a cuddler, and has decided it is her duty to show me her butt every morning like a furry alarm clock. Both are very friendly with Daisy, who mothers them.
They are also both expert mousers, killing a large number of rodents, especially this time of year, when the agricultural fields around us are harvested and the various creatures who lived in and near them start eyeing our house as a possible place of warmth and food. This is where I remind people that I live in a rural part of the county and all our cats are working animals as well as pets, and pest control is a real thing that happens.
But they certainly are cute, too, which is how the internet knows them and appreciates them. We like that about them, too. It’s been a good two years with the Scamperbeasts and we look forward to more of them. We’re glad we brought them home with us. They seem glad to be here.
Happy cat-birthday, Scamperbeasts!
Holy hell, it’s been 2 years already??!
As my wife and I read this, she says “I hear sounds that our cat is chasing something at the other end of our hallway.”
*snort* Yeah, we lived in the country for 14 years. It wasn’t a matter of “If you get rodents,” it was “When you get rodents.”
wow I cannot believe it’s been two years. You should post some pictures of their work as rodent control though that might tarnish their cute internet personal
All hail the valiant mouse-catching Scamperbeasts!
It just dawned on me: no flea collars? Or is there some kind of treatment you give them instead?
There are indeed flea/tick treatments and we give them to them.
John said, “They are also both expert mousers, killing a large number of rodents, especially this time of year . . . ”
Our neighborhood has several feral cats that do an excellent job of keeping the plague, er, rodentia, in check. It’s been a long while since I’ve seen a rat scurry for cover. Our neighborhood also has a couple of good souls who look after these cats and make sure they get veterinary care from time to time.
Thanks for adding to my vocabulary. One of my cats gets the zombies at least daily, and she’s 6.
Yay, all the scamperbeasts!
Argh, autocorrect – zoomies!
Actually my Scottie terrier Watson is a far better ratter than our cat ever was. Terrier and holy terror must be related entemogically.
The Overlord, His Royal Prince Thursby, now gone to his celestial kingdom to command the best cushion on site, could not be moved. Even when mice decided the best place to overwinter was the wood box side of our ancient gas stove (purchased as it was cheap and fitted the 1909 house style), Thursby grumped on by with a lordly tail in the air.
Once I got hooked on birds, urban habitat restoration etc, this worked out fine. The Prince maintained a phlegmatic perch on the sunny spot on the fence and kept roaming cats out while the birds could come and go safely. Long may his memory be honored….Hail Thursby!
(Thanks for sparking this memory and extra points if you know the literary reference for his name)
Sorry to jump topics – but so glad about your post ’bout the ACA enrollment. Don’t get me started about trump’s plans to make ACA’s failure a self-fulfilling prophecy by not advertising. Love your cats! We have two of them…one, Elsie, has made it her life’s mission to finally capture and contain the little red laser dot that mockingly eludes her grasp. The other cat, Chirp, has made it HER life’s mission to jump on my lap when I am in the middle of paying bills, checking out the kid’s schoolwork, or pressing my fingers against my temples when I come across the phrase “President Trump”. Gotta say, I just loved “The Collapsing Empire” – hope you can get a follow-up out soon. No pressure…the Ohio winter will close in soon, and all you’ll be able to do is write or to stare out your window and look at those wonderfully bleak, steel grey Midwest skies. I’ve lived in Columbus my whole life, so I know what I’m talking about. I’e been reading sci-fi since I was a kid…born in 1961…and the stuff you are churning out is some of the best I’ve read in years. Kind of like Heinlein, except sarcastic! Keep the faith…keep this in mind…to paraphrase from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”…”Mueller? Mueller? Mueller?’
@MSB, I’m stealing “getting the zombies” though because it describes me on some afternoons.
I love all the pictures of the scamperbeasts.
I don’t suppose The Scamperbeasts could produce a “How to Hunt Rodents” video series? Bichon Frise were supposedly bred to be ship-board ratters, but mine have never gotten more than a lizard tail or two. A bit of hunter-killer would have been nice earlier this year during the rat invasion of 2016-2017. (No, I don’t live in DC. I meant actual four legged rats)
I’ve had my Scamperbeasts for two years also (I got mine during Canadian Thanksgiving in October), and now they are three and four and as zoomy and affectionate as ever.
Here’s to kitty anniversaries and many more to come!
Happy second anniversary of coming to foreverhome! Let the scampering rule the household, with little thunderpaws at 4 am.
The Obedient Household Staffer of Didi and Carisma (Management of Human Resources/Gooshy Food Delivery After the Revolution).
They look like mighty fine teenaged cats now!
Rodent control is part of why Trap Neuter Release is such a big deal for feral cat populations <3
On the other hand, my lazy furbeasts are currently lounging in the grass while two squirrels and a Stellars jay graze through the pumpkin guts not 3 feet away. Maybe they need lessons from the Scamperbeasts
Happy Scamperversary to the Scalzi household! And may you enjoy many more years of early morning cat-butts, demands for snuggles when you had planned to write, and those little back-door surprises after a hunt.
Our elder cat recently died of cancer, sadly, and his surviving buddy clearly misses having a pal in the house. Inspired in part by your tales of Sugar and Spice, we have been mulling over the possibility of adding a pair of Scamperbeasts to our own household on the theory that a pair of youngsters would be likelier to pick on each other than on the senior feline, while one kitten would probably nag the poor old fellow into an early grave.
Thanks for letting us vicariously peek in the window and laugh with you at the Scamperbeasts for the past two years, sir. There are days when they’re the only bright spots in a sea of gloom. Long may they scamper!
They’ve grown so much! It sounds like they’re a great ass-et to have around.
Our house two moves ago was a dilapidated barn in the north Georgia mountains. I still occasionally have nightmares about the year that our normal rodent infestation exploded into astronomical levels after our absentee next door neighbor clear-cut his 100 or so acres. Field mice! Wood rats! ROUSes! I was ready to trade in my indolent crew of dogs for one decent mouser. (Eventually there were so many that even my laziest dog was able to catch one – it helped that the critter ran in between her front paws..)
John, they’ve been an ongoing delight to watch from over here, a reliable pleasure in the midst of too many dreary un-fun days. Looking forward to lots more.
In our house, the o-dark-thirty zoomies is referred to as Thundering Herds of Stampeding Kitticats.
So have you been able to ascertain the reason for the ought-am cat butt? What do you think she’s trying to communicate to you?