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.

halfbroVäkC07530

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.

halfbroVäkC07535

halfbroVäkC07539

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

roryVäkjudgingC07546

roryVäkjudgingC07548

roryVäkjudgingC07553

roryVäkjudgingC07557

roryVäkjudgingC07564

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

roryVäkjudgingC07566

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

roryVäkjudgingC07570

roryVäkjudgingC07574

roryVäkjudgingC07578

roryVäkjudgingC07579

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.

roryVäkjudgingC07589

roryVäkjudgingC07593

roryVäkjudgingC07602

roryVäkjudgingC07608

roryVäkjudgingC07613

Marie seemed to examine Rory for ages

halfbroVäkC07617

halfbroVäkC07621

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

roryhalfbroVäkC07632

roryhalfbroVäkC07651

roryhalfbroVäkC07654

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!

roryVäkjudgingC07661

roryVäkjudgingC07666

roryVäkjudgingC07670

roryVäkjudgingC07677

roryVäkjudgingC07680

roryVäkjudgingC07681

roryVäkjudgingC07683

roryjudgingC07685

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!

Aby-a-Day – 17 June: “I’m walkin’ here! I’m walkin’!” (Cinema Sunday)

Lorelai is a wonderful leash-walker. She may even have a better follow instinct than even Logan had.

rorywalkIMG_3548

Rory has a slight “kitty cold,” so we went to the vet. When we got back, Rory walked all the way home from the bus stop!

rorywalkIMG_3547

rorywalkIMG_3546

rorywalkIMG_3545

On the way, she found a pigeon feather.

rorywalkIMG_3544

“Please, Mom, can we bring it home?” (Spoiler alert: yes, we brought it home and I dipped it in Virkon as soon as we got home.)

Below is a video of Rory’s impressive walk home…She is such a good walker!

Aby-a-Day – 25 March: The Case of the Buried Bowls (Cinematic Sunday)

When Alfred and Logan joined our family, they ate together in our guest room, also known as the Kitten Room. This was because I didn’t want the big Abys eating the high-calorie kitten food, and I wanted to give the older cats a little break from the rambunctious kittens.

toysinbowlsIMG_E0298

Every time I went to let them out and collect the bowls, I would find them covered in a pile of toys. Both of them will make the motions of burying old food by scraping the floor around the dishes, so I couldn’t be sure who was doing it.

logantoysinbowlsIMG_0283

Logan would usually follow me when I collected the bowls, but he seemed almost as mystified as I was. He didn’t give me any clues as to whether or not it was him. So finally, I set my camera up on a tripod, started it up, and left it running while they ate. The original video was 23 minutes long, so I edited out the times that no cats were in the shot and nothing was happening. Even after clipping the boring bits out, the video is still almost 6½ minutes long!

So, if you don’t want to watch it in realtime, here is a sped-up version that takes half the time.

Either way, mystery solved! It’s Freddy, although Logan helps. And Freddy still buries his bowls, even now that he’s over a year old. He’s been eating on his own in the Kitten Room, and when I come to collect his dish, I always have to dig it out from underneath a pile of toys.

Even funnier, it seems to be a family trait. Freddy’s older half-sister, Hera, also covers up her food bowls when she’s finished eating!

Aby-a-Day – 29 April: Loafing around with the upper crust (Friday Flashback)

Apparently bread-eating runs in Jacoby’s family. Almost nine years ago, Gun-Hee attacked a loaf of bread.

Hello, Abys…what part of “obligate carnivore” escapes you?

Aby-a-Day – December 25: First Christmases with Gun-Hee and Jacoby

I just never get tired of remembering Gun-Hee’s first Christmas.

gunhee-tree800

We had only had him with us for ten days at that point. He was so different from any other kitten I’ve ever had!

gunhee-tree794

For one thing, he is the only cat I’ve ever had who tried to climb the Christmas tree…much less succeed at it!

Gun-Hee was a lot more agile and graceful than Jacoby is. Luckily, Jake’s never tried to climb the tree. No, he prefers to eat it.

Or play underneath it.

jacoby3222

Or simply chill and look at all the lights. In some ways, they’re so alike…but in other ways, they couldn’t be more different.

And then, there’s this…well…Merry Christmas, everyone!

Aby-a-Day – December 1: Behind what Somalis say (Cartoon Tuesday)

Another in my series of the sketches behind some of my favourite cartoons…in honour of Abyfriend Wendy’s blue girl Wren, whose birthday was yesterday, I thought I’d share the sketch behind last year’s April Fools Day cartoon.

somalis_sketch

It’s rare for an artist to really like something they’ve drawn, but I’m extremely please with how the Somali versions of Vegard and Bård Ylvisaker turned out. They needed almost no changes from the original sketches to the final cartoon – that almost never happens!

Also, notice how Leo’s arm was not drawn around Wren’s shoulder. I drew each Aby separately, and put them together in Photoshop.

abycartoon118

Here’s the final cartoon. See how little Vegard and Bård changed from the sketch?

And if you still haven’t seen Ylvis‘ awesome video, well… you probably should:

Aby-a-Day – October 17: “Jazzy” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Jazzy.”

abyjudgingIMG_7657

Our friends Stan and Patty’s cattery name is Jazzy Abys. This is Jazzy Abys Buddy Rich when he was a kitten at the Seacoast Cat Club Show in 2012.

mansfield-stanbuddyC01679 2

Buddy became a CFA Grand Premier at Mansfield show in August that same year.

buddy1stcffE_9942

It took Buddy a little longer to earn his Grand Champion Alter title in CFF.

Buddy Rich is a grandson of the famous Grand Champion JazzyAbys Fats Waller (aka “Wally”), against whom Gun-Hee competed in the kitten class. Gun-Hee actually competed against Wally at his first show. This video shows Gun-Hee (#28) earning second best of breed in a ring with Wally (#30) being awarded best Aby in that kitten ring.

gunhee-concordshow0109

Gun-Hee also met Eszencia TheCountess of Jazzy Abys in his second show as a kitten.