Aby-a-Day – 9 October: Crossword Cats (Cartoon Tuesday)

Crossword puzzles are very popular in Sweden. There are dozens of different crossword magazines available, and all the daily newspapers also publish them. A friend sent me this one from https://www.dn.se/kultur-noje/kulturdebatt/sveriges-korsordsmakare-var-korsordstradition-ligger-snart-i-spillror/Dagens Nyheter a year ago, and I recently found it whilst I was looking for something else.

I love it, of course, because it really illustrates a FIFe show’s layout. And the breed depictions are really nicely done. I couldn’t find much out this illustration at all, sadly, but I did find the artist, Ann-Charlotte Odén, on DeviantArt, so I may send her a message asking about it.

As for the translations: The top running pair are saying, “I suggest we start a sports club for cats instead!” (He’s probably a Turkish Angora) The other cat is saying “Okay!”

“Ouch! He only had 10 points to go to 100!” says the Abyssinian.

The black silver classic tabby British Shorthair says, “That’s not the right way to hold (a cat)!” and the Cornish Rex agrees, saying, “Oj! What’s happening!?”

And the human is saying, “Ow! I pulled (a muscle) between my heel and calf!” I have no idea what that means…I suspect all of the comments are clues to the crossword puzzle itself.

Which means the answer to that last one is probably “Achilles.”

Aby-a-Day – 6 October: Izaak and Lorelai at the show in Vårgårda (Cat Show Saturday)

Quick show report from Vårgårda today.

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Because of the funeral yesteday, we decided to cancel our motel reservation and just stay at home Friday and Saturday night. This meant a long, speedy, frenzied drive to the show hall this morning…only to face a long, slow line at check in. Of course.

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Of course, once we got the cage set up, Lorelai and Izaak were their usual, over-stressed selves.

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Although we did have a bit of excitement over the dried beefheart samples…

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We were benched next to our friends Anna, Peter and Bonk. That was pleasant.

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The big surprise was that Rory’s half-sister was entered in the show! They have the same mother, Kajza, but Adela was born in January 2017.

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Here is Rory’s half-sister Adela up for judging.

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Rory was up for judging first, before Zak.

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The judge, Ulrika Eriksson, liked her well enough to call her back for the nominations.

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She was up against this tabby-point and white Siamese…

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…who ultimately ended up getting the nomination.

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Then it was Izaak’s turn.

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He was the only cat Jaana Jyrkinen judged today in his class (11 – Juniors, 7-10 months), so he got the nomination by default…but she loved him and would have had him in her final decision regardless.

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Here’s Zak with his little Nom trophy.

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…No, Zak…nothing to eat here…

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We were so excited! This was Zak’s first nomination! Okay, it may have been by default…but still, it’s a nomination and it counts!

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In the panel, Zak was up against a Bengal and a blue-spotted Ocicat.

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It was close…but the Ocicat ended up being Best in Show today. But still, it was a good day for the only Singapura entered in the show!

Aby-a-Day – 1 October: Happy Singapura Day!

On this day in 2014, the Singapura was officially accepted as a breed in FIFe.

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While the Singapura was accepted for registration by the TICA in 1979 for championship competition and accepted in CFA in 1982 as a provisional breed and was granted championship status in 1988, Singas took longer to be accepted in Europe.

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The GCCF (the British cat registry organisation) finally granted Singapuras championship status in June 2005.

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And then, at long last, the Singapuras were accepted by FIFe, Europe’s purebred cat registry.

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Because I have known about Singas – and seen them at CFA shows – since I was in high school (at least 35 years), it’s a bit odd to me that they are a “new” breed here in Europe. In Sweden, Singapuras were registered in Sverak (Sweden’s branch of FIFe) since the early 1980’s, but in all that time, only 355 Singapuras have been registered in Sweden. And, as of right now, Sverak’s newest Singapura is…our Izaak.

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Which makes our little Polish import a special little cat, indeed!

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“Well DUH…of COURSE I’m special! Just look at me!”

Aby-a-Day – 15 September: Full court press (Cat Show Saturday)

We’re at a cat show this weekend in a basketball arena in Västra Frölunda, a suburb of Göteborg.

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We took the train last night. Izaak and Lorelai once again proved themselves to be excellent travellers.

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They had to explore the luggage rack, though.

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We were in the nine-seat pet compartment with a group of four young gamer geeks. One of them was allergic to cats and complained when we let them play on the luggage. On Swedish trains, there are only a limited number of pet compartment seats, so you would think people without pets would choose to sit elsewhere. But that just goes to show you that Sweden ain’t perfect…we have our share of entitled jerks who sit in the pet compartment and then complain when someone who has a pet he’s allergic to happens to sit in there with him…it’s just like home!

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When we got to our hotel, the kittens – excuse me, juniors, set about proving the axiom about cats loving hotel rooms correct once again.

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Like Logan before her, Rory discovered the joy of heated bathroom floors.

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And both Zak and Rory were unbearably cute cuddling on the bed.

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One thing we got to do was get some professional photos done.

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We got some of them done with both of them together, and then some of each of them on their own. I ended up buying four of each: Zak, Rory, and then both together.

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As with their first show together, the two of them were remarkably relaxed.

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And we got to see our Göteborg friends at this show! We got to see Peter, Anna and Bonk…

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…and Jasper…

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…As well as Stellan with Oskar and two other Singas.

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I didn’t notice the beauty of this photo until long after I had taken it.

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This, though…this is awesome. Across from where we are benched is Arextocats. You remember from my my post about my finger surgery, when I ran into a nurse named Göran in Recovery whose fiancée had Rexes..? Yeah…this is her. She doesn’t have a cat fromArextocats…she is Arextocats! And Göran will be at the show tomorrow…which for some reason makes me stupidly happy.

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But onto the results. Zak was up against a pretty chocolate Burmese and didn’t get nominated to the panel. But Rory was nominated!

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In the panel, first the judge who nominated a cat looks him or her over.

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Then the judge looks at the cat or cats that the other judges nominated.

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Rory was up against a slightly older, male Oriental Shorthair…and he was Best in Show. This time.

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Here they are on the bus back to our hotel. What will tomorrow hold? We’ll find out!

Aby-a-Day – 22 July: “I have one speed, I have one gear: go!” (Cat Show Cinema Sunday)

In a couple of weeks, Lorelai and Izaak will be going to their first show together, held by the Järva Kattklubb in Stockholm. This was Logan’s first show last year.

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It was a fun show, and it was held as part of a larger animal fair called Djurens Helg, with dogs, horses, small mammals, birds, reptiles and even insects! There was a lot to do and see during the show downtimes. Sadly, though, this year Djurens Helg is the weekend before the cat show.

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But the best thing of all about this show was that they had cat agility set up! I hadn’t seen that since I was back n the States.

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Now, you may remember that Jacoby absolutely sucks at agility. But Gun-Hee was really good at it, and came in fourth place as a kitten at our first Seacoast show. So when I saw the agility set up, I had to give Logan a go.

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And, after getting himself oriented in the cage…

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…he did really, really well!

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But at the end of the day, he had come in third place! Unfortunately, there were only trophies for first and second places, but still, he ran the course in 4 seconds!

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It wasn’t a circle, like the one in New Hampshire; it was just a straight line, but he did it perfectly. We are hoping it will be back again this year, because we cannot wait to show it to Zak and Rory!

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Oddly, as with Gun-Hee, we didn’t manage to get a very good video of Logan running it. This is the best we could manage.

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So, here is a video of Logan playing in his benching cage. (Click on the images to see the videos on Flickr.)

Aby-a-Day – 8 July: “Judge not, lest ye be judged” (Cat Show Cinema Sunday)

Last Saturday, as I posted, Lorelai made her first show appearance.

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What was interesting, though, was that her half brother Lord was being judged at the same time on the judging table next to ours. The ruddies and the blues were judged separately on Saturday, and together on Sunday.

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It was fun to watch him be judged while Rory was being judged.

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Rory is a cat show natural! She was fearless, playful, and utterly charming.

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The judge, Marie Westerlund, actually breeds Abys (her cattery name is S*Rackarkattens) and she fell in love with Rory.

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In FIFe, the owner displays the cat to the judge, and the judge talks to the owner and explains what she’s looking for and how the cat meets the standard. It’s a bit different from CFA, where of course the judges know who the owners are, but there’s a sort of invisible wall of tacit anonymity. A show judge is not supposed to see or even know what cat is entered in the show. After the cat is judged, it’s okay to hang out with the judge. Also, in CFA, judges dress up. Men wear ties, and women wear nice suits and dresses. In FIFe, the judges seem to wear whatever they want. Men wearing jeans and a polo shirt is not uncommon.

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Marie seemed to examine Rory for ages

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Meanwhile, Rory’s half-brother was still on his judging table.

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Then something odd happened. Rory’s judge went over to talk to Lord’s judge! I hadn’t ever seen that happen before. Not sure what they were talking about, but it was cool to see them close together!

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As you can see, Rory is a natural star. And you can see how smitten Marie was by her.

I also shot a movie of her being judged. As I said, she was on the table a really long time!

Other People’s Singas: Izaak’s brother Joop the victorious (Super Singas)

While we were with Lorelai at her first show in Sweden, Izaak’s brother Joop was at the Wystawa Kotów Rasowych in Sopot, Poland.

I’m not sure exactly how the awards translate, but he did very well indeed, and I think this was his very first show, too. You can see him in action on the judging table

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Unlike CFA, when you win a Best in Show you get not only a rosette but also prizes – usually food and cat accessories.

Here is Joop and all his winnings. That trophy is bigger than he is!

And if you are wondering why we didn’t take Zak along with Rory to the show this past weekend, well, that’s because while he is registered in FIFe, he is registered as a Polish cat, not a Swedish cat. He needs to have his details entered into Sverak‘s database as my cat before I can enter him. So as soon as that happens…we’ll see if he can do as well as his littermate!