“What is an Abyssinian?”

What is an Abyssinian?

I found this during a random Google search, and it cracked me up. What hit closest to home was this list of ways your life changes once an Aby joins your family:

  1. You will never again sleep past 4:00 a.m. Like a wolf, an Aby feels that predawn is the hour to hunt (but then he also hunts on and off all day). The problem is that he needs you to help him find his prey. At first he may just stand over your head and stare at you, but soon he’ll develop a heavy purr. Only the extremely naive will suppose that the purr expresses devotion. If you have not responded within a reasonable time, he may begin to nibble at your nose or toes. Occasionally he’ll burrow into your hair and try to get some of it between his teeth. Within thirty minutes you will be in the kitchen, can opener poised.
  2. You’ll never eat alone. Even if you are eating food the cat doesn’t like (in my experience, only grapefruit), he will develop a taste for it. He will steal anything in the pot or on the plate — from croissant to steak or corn on the cob — and drag it to whatever place he considers his lair. You will never be able to sit through a meal when an Aby is nearby. Fortunately, they don’t mind being removed to another room. Unfortunately, this action never inspires reform.
  3. You will have to sneak in and out of your home like a criminal. This is to prevent your Aby from running away. When I open my front door to greet visitors, I clutch my Aby in my arms. No doubt my visitors now talk behind my back about my neurotic attachment. It’s actually self-defense. To my shame, my Aby has been known to flee into strangers’ apartments and hide under their beds. He has rushed into the elevator and descended alone to the lobby. On one horrible night, without my knowing it, he slid through a partially open window to the fire escape where he sat overnight one flight above his real home. I hope he missed me.

Oh, so very, very true…

I totally believe that, of all cat breeds, it would be an Abyssinian who got stuck inside a turkey

Bird: The turkey cat who started a new Thanksgiving tradition

“Busy.” Is that what the kids are calling it these days?

The one word that keeps coming up when you start reading about Abyssinans and their personalities is “Busy.”

“Busy.” Yeah, okay, if by “busy” you mean, “freakishly unable to rest until everthing that can be moved has been,” then yes, I can totally agree with that.

Of course, this is coming from someone who was woken up several times last night, the last time to see a very small ticked brown cat attacking a very large garbage bag full of clothes bound for Goodwill…

No matter how large the target, Gun-Hee is ready and willing (if not always able) to attack it full-on.

I come from the world of Siamese…Siamese are a walk in the park compared to Abys.

Gun-Hee up a (very short, carpeted) tree

In the condo, we only have a very short cat tree with only the most basic scratching and lounging accomodations (unlike the floor-to-ceiling tree we have in Somerville). Gun-Hee has this very raggedy pagoda that we would put on the top of the cat tree’s shelf…

Which is one of his favourite places to nap.

More of Gun-Hee in his pagoda

Strange bedfellows

Patrick and Gun-Hee have very little in common…except for the fact that they were both born in the Year of the Dog, 12 years apart. They almost never cuddle together, unless Patrick is on the heater bed and Gun-Hee wants it all for himself. So it was rather charming to find this scene when I woke up yesterday morning…

Walking home with mom

After going to work with me, Gun-Hee walked home with me, too…

And when we get home, he rides the elevator just like any other working stiff.

More photos of Gun-Hee at work…

Here are the rest of the photos of Gun-Hee visiting my office last Thursday…


I love this one…He’s not really looking at anything,
but it looks like he sees something fascinating.


I think it’s cute, him sitting at my desk.


Here he is visiting my co-worker Julia.


I love this chair – it’s the only one we have like it. It looks good on Gun-Hee.


In the conference room…


…and at John’s desk, pretending to be the boss.

Gun-Hee as LOLcat

This is the first batch of photos of Gun-Hee at work. These four I deemed worthy of LOLcatness. Since we’re in the office, I thought that the “Sucessories” style was particulary apropos…

This is what happens when cat meets office.


Sunday Funnies

It would be hard to convey the hilarity that ensues chez us every Sunday morning when the newspaper gets brought in. Even these photos don’t really capture it…

Gun-Hee found Nemo!

Somehow, watching Finding Nemo is a lot more fun since Gun-Hee joined our family.

Happy Mother’s Day

This is the Mother’s Day card I got this year. I can’t decide what amuses me more: The picture on the front that looks like him, or the wording on the inside that sounds like him! Here’s the ourside…

…and his signature inside…

Gun-Hee on the desktop

I have written previously about how much “Links,” the Microsoft Office assistant in feline form reminds me of Gun-Hee. Well, since he got his new, turquoise blue collar, the resemblance is even more striking!

What kills me is the sound effects; the purring and meowing really sounds a lot like Gun-Hee.

Rubbing up against things…check.

Another pose they share in common.

This would be the “looking for toys under the sofa” shot.

I think this is the one that reminds me the most of Gun-Hee: the Kitten of Mass Destruction.

But then, this one, too, captures him pretty well…he does sleep like this!

Gun-Hee and his Collar

So, before he was born, when we were in Japan, I bought Gun-Hee a collar at Pet City in Tokyo. We bought one for all the cats including my future boy kitten. Of course, he was too small to wear it at first. But after we got home from the last cat show, I put it on him.

That was May 6th. On May 16th (his 8 month birthday) I noticed it was starting to get chewed up. I mean, really chewed up.

That’s after only ten days of wearing it! Ten days!

I have no idea why he decided his new collar needed to be chewed. None of the other cats saw a need to chew on their collars (well, okay, the girls didn’t, and Patrick couldn’t given his whole lack of teeth situation)…But I mean, Japan. Kimono fabric. Not like I can just go down to the shops and get him a new one, you know?

And I figured out why he was chewing it, too. He was trying to chew it off. Because for a few weeks before the cat show, I took his collar off so that his neck wouldn’t have collar-hair. He wears tags on his collar – all the cats do – partially in case they get out, but also because it helps us to keep track of where they are by the sound of their tags. So guess who’s decided he doesn’t like making noise? Without his collar, he can sneak up on the other cats, and he can get into more trouble before we catch him at it.

I know that’s what he’s doing too, because when he gets tired of wearing his harness, he chews at the buckle. Not the other side, only the side where the buckle is, because he knows that’s how we put it on and take it off.

So I got him a new collar on Wednesday. Leather with little diamond studs. I think he looks really cute in it.

But now, here’s the thing: I noticed yesterday that he has already started chewing the new collar!

Sigh. So I took it to my house, got out my tool box, and put some rivets in the collar where he’d been chewing it.

I also trimmed the end…because he’d been chewing that as well.

As a friend said when I told her the story, “You weren’t kidding when you called him the Kitten of Mass Destruction!”

Gun-Hee says Happy Birthday

I didn’t have any stickers. That’s how this started. My husband’s nephew’s birthday is Monday, and we sent his card on Friday. I wanted to dress up the envelope a bit, and, as I said…I didn’t have any stickers.

So I drew a little picture of Gun-Hee with a party hat and a birthday cake on the back of the envelope.


Today, I wondered what it would look like in colour. Taking colours from an actual photo of Gun-Hee and using the rubber stamp tool in Photoshop, I came up with something that, I think, looks pretty decent.


After the show…

When we got home from the cat show, Gun-Hee crashed on the sofa.

And like he does with everything, he gave it 110%!

More photos from the Concord Show

A few more random photos from the show…

Gun-Hee’s dad Scar in the ring with the judge who named his son Best Kitten

CFA Cat Show, Concord, NH May 6, 2007

Gun-Hee didn’t do as well on his second day at the show. It was a lot colder in the show hall (which was also a hockey rink!) and the judges were moving more slowly…in a couple of rings they called the kittens up to their rings long before they were needed, and those little show cages are not as warm as the benching cages!

So his eyes started to tear up and run, and he also started sneezing a little. He was fine in the morning, in the hotel before we got to the show…but he didn’t get one Best of Breed, and, consequently, didn’t make any finals. However, I don’t think the other Abyssinian, the little red girl, made any finals, either. It wasn’t a good day for Abys in general, I think.

Here he is keeping warm by playing with the little red girl.

At the Concord Best Western

Gun-Hee loves going to hotel rooms! There is just so much to explore!

CFA Cat Show, Concord, NH May 5, 2007

Gun-Hee’s second cat show started off very well. There were only two Abyssinian kittens entered, and the other one was a different colour than Gun-Hee, so it was basically a battle for Best of Breed in the kitten class. On the first day of the show, Gun-Hee was named Best of Breed two out of three times.

Here he is with a first round of ribbons.

Cats in Cahoots

We have this foldable show cage, but we leave it up all the time so that Gun-Hee and Tessie are used to it. Gun-Hee uses it like a sort of club house. We used to put him in it when he was naughty and now, when he knows he’s being bad, he just runs into the cage (which works because we’re like, aw, how cute he knows he’s bad and he’s punishing himself).

So Kylie rarely goes into the show cage. But the other morning she was in there and Gun-Hee was watching her from outside. Then, I heard crunching. I reach in and…lo and behold, two chewed-open bags of treats! These had been in a pocket of the cat show bag, jammed way in there. So I’m sure Gun-Hee worked on them to get them out of there, and when he did, he took them over to his cage because he knew it was “bad.” Then he goes tells Kylie there’s treats in his cage, can she please go open them so they can eat them?

Abys are smart. He figured out how to unzip his cage at the last show; we have to put little carabiners on to keep the zippers together.