This is Helios, our alpha cat. He is one of the most fun cats I’ve ever met. Smart and interactive, the kind that takes a lot of interest in what his helper monkeys are up to, constantly vocalizing, so there’s a soundtrack of meows and purrs.
He is also a raging asshole. The worst cat I’ve ever met.
This mostly takes the form of being terrible to his two “sisters” with constant dominance displays including sauntering up to where one of the other cats is hanging out, just being a cat and enjoying the day, and attacking if that other cat doesn’t immediately yield the space. Not because he wants to lie down where the other cat is, just to make sure they know they exist at his mercy.
There are also of course ambushes. And the stealing of treats. Though I’m sure he doesn’t see it as stealing, more along the lines of the treats existing and therefore being his, like everything else in the world.
We rescued Helios from our vet. One day, after he’d hurt himself fighting somewhere in the neighborhood, tearing up one of his paws, we had to bring him back and one of the vet techs, in hushed tones, admitted he was the only cat she’d ever been afraid of.
Helios will cut you.
He’s been castrated, of course, and it’s slowed him down not one iota. As a matter of fact, he was up and running an hour after we got him back from the vet, even though the surgery was difficult with one of the testicles stuck inside his stomach. But enough of this unpleasant subject.
We have a deal with our cats that we let them out in the backyard on the condition they stay inside the walls, which all our cats have done. Except one. Off like a rocket to who knows where the first time we let him out. So we put a collar on him so people could at least call us if he was found somewhere. How long did the collar stay on, you ask? A few minutes, probably. We never saw it again.
None of our cats have ever caught anything we’re aware of. Except one, who reenacts the Red Wedding with the poor mourning doves. We fully expect them to have a temple somewhere where they make dark sacrifices to protect them from Steppin' Razor.
It’s amazing how unique the little murder machines can be.
Solid reads abound in this installment of the roundup. Includes Console Wars, Your Inner Fish, Flash Boys, Digital Wars, The Perfect Storm, Tower Lord, By Blood We Live, I am Pilgrim and Lexicon.
Why whatever Apple is about to release will not be anything like the Pebble or Android Wear.
Game of Thrones and The First Law Trilogy illustrate the different ways England and America are dealing with fading empires.
Nic is homesick on Midsummer’s Eve.
We should forget the names of our mass murderers.
Movie time, kids! Includes an excellent documentary and a lot of not-great movies. Includes Sorcerer, Generation Iron, Restrepo, The Numbers Station, Pacific Rim and 300: Rise of an Empire.
It’s way easier to be an extremist in America if you’re white.
The idea that both the left and the right in America are getting more extreme is false. Nic explains why.
Get medieval on your fascia.
Hey, you like lasers? We have lasers!