Skip to main content

Lucy the Guard Cat

AttentiveLucy might be all of just eight pounds sopping wet, but Lucy is not one to be pushed about, at least not easily. She's a proud little thing who takes her many responsibilities quite seriously, such as guarding our house, 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.

She woke me at 2:30am with a constant meowing in the middle of the house. I was sleeping in my La-Z-Boy recliner in the TV room because I'd been snoring pretty badly earlier in the evening and was keeping the wife awake. I'd finally fallen asleep and was deep in slumber when I started to dream about Lucy. I dreamed she was calling to me. The calling was very persistent, so persistent that I woke up to hear her meowing.

For a minute I thought it might have been one of my daughter's cats, but it became clear it was coming from where Lucy normally sleeps.

I got up, grabbed the flashlight, and went stumbling into the front of the house. At first I saw Lucy sitting in the middle of the floor with her hackles up. As I swung the light onto Lucy I saw something white on the floor in front of her. As I got closer, it turned out to be a (now dead) Florida gecko. I don't know how it got in (I have to occasionally trap and release the critters), but Lucy had found this one and had dispatched it to where ever geckos go when killed by cats.

Lucy stopped calling as soon as she saw me, and a minute later the wife came out and took in the scene as well. I picked up Lucy and took her back, while the wife disposed of the gecko's body. I stumbled back to bed, while Lucy sat at the foot of the bed waiting for her mistress. The last thing I saw before falling asleep again was Lucy curled up next to the wife, content that she'd protected the household against an unknown invader.

Update and Corrections

Talked to the wife after getting home, and she clued me in to what Lucy actually did last night (or so she believes).
  1. The gecko wasn't dead. Apparently my bright flashlight 'stunned' it into immobility. In any event, it was still alive, and she put it out the front door to scurry off to where ever it is stunned-by-flash-light geckos scurry off to.
  2. Lucy was so scared she was hyperventilating. I've never seen a cat hyperventilate before, so I have no idea if Lucy was scared or not. But it was 2:30 am, I was still half asleep, so I guess anything is possible.
  3. Later in the day Lucy found another gecko in the house and let the wife know about it. The gecko was dutifully trapped and released outdoors.
I still think Lucy is brave. There's no denying she found something and let us know about it, and waited for some person to get rid of it. Maybe she senses something sinister about geckos that mere humans can't detect. Perhaps she'll clue me in one day.


Popular posts from this blog

cat-in-a-box channels greta garbo

So I'm sitting at my computer, when I start to notice a racket in back. I ignore it for a while until I hear a load "thump!", as if something had been dropped on the floor, followed by a lot of loud rattling. I turn around and see Lucy in the box just having a grand old time, rolling around and rattling that box a good one. I grab the GX1 and snap a few shots before she notices me and the camera, then leaps out and back into her chair (which used to be my chair before she decided it was her chair).

Just like caring for Katie my black Lab taught me about dogs, caring for Lucy is teaching me about cats. She finds me fascinating, as I do her. And she expresses great affection and love toward me without coaxing. I try to return the affection and love, but she is a cat, and she takes a bat at me on occasion, although I think that's just her being playful. She always has her claws in when she does that.

She sits next to me during the evening in her chair while I sit in mi…

vm networking problem fixed

Over the weekend I upgraded to Windows 8.1, then discovered that networking for the virtual machines wouldn't work. Then I tried something incredibly simple and fixed the problem.

Checking the system I noticed that three VMware Windows services weren't running; VMnetDHCP, VMUSBArbService, and VMwareNatService. VMware Player allows you to install, remove, or fix an existing installation. I chose to try fixing the installation, and that fixed the problem. The services were re-installed/restarted, and the virtual machines had networking again.

Once network connectivity was established there was exactly one updated file for Ubuntu 13.10, a data file. This underscores how solid and finished the release was this time. Every other version of every other Linux installation I've ever dealt with has always been succeeded by boatloads of updates after the initial installation. But not this time.

Everything is working properly on my notebook. All's right with the world.

sony's pivotal mirrorless move

I'm a died-in-the-wool technologist, even when it comes to photography. I have always been fascinated with the technology that goes into manufacturing any camera, from the lenses (optics) through the mechanical construction, the electronics involved, and especially the chemistry of the film and the sophistication of the digital sensor. It's amazing that the camera can do all it's asked of it, regardless of manufacturer.

Of all the types of cameras that I've really taken an interest in, contemporary mirrorless (again, regardless of manufacturer) are the most interesting because of the challenging problems the scientists and engineers have had to solve in order to build a compact but highly functional camera. In particular I've followed the sensor advances over the years and watched image quality climb (especially with μ4:3rds) to exceed film and rival one another such that there's very little difference any more as you move from the smaller sensors such as 4:3r…