Scratching post envy

The Mistress is fond of flea markets. During Summertime there’s a flea market every Sunday in the town where the House of Chaos can be found and whenever she has time (and the pecunia needed for the fun) she will scrounge to her heart’s content and come home with all kinds of cheaply-bought lovely stuff for enjoyable adornment of the house. Or, in Grumpy Man’s words: “She’s found some new junk to clutter the place with”.

This time however he had to grudgingly agree that 4 interesting books are indeed a good find and he didn’t even complain about the scratching post. The virtually new scratching post with hardly any wear and tear, coming from an old lady whose feline companion sadly didn’t manage to celebrate its 18th birthday. But as the saying goes: “one person’s loss is another person’s bargain”. We now are the proud owners of 1 (one) blue-furred and sisal-wrapped scratching post. With a platform on top. Neat !

“Neat” was exactly what Zorro must have been thinking when he first set eager and approving eyes upon the unfamiliar contraption. After I finished reconstructing it (when I bought the post it had to be disassembled for easier carrying) he, together with a bold Hrimnir and a timid Frankette, immediately set to carefully checking it out. After a few tentative sniffs, and some not-so-tentative cheek-rubs, Zorro planted his furry behind -and his implicit approval- upon the platform and stayed put. He even remained perched on it when I took out the food bags and filled the bowls.

Later on, though, Zorro retreated to his recently chosen spot on top of the Cupboard of Many Treasures and presumably went to sleep there. He wasn’t however. The moment one other of the feline denizens of the House of Chaos came over in order to carefully sniff at the new scratching post a vengeful streak of black-&-white anger careened down from the cupboard and onto the hapless kitty. Repeat three times. Even Frankette, usually Zorro’s darling (which means he hasn’t tried to kill her yet and usually tolerates her passing close-by), had to make a fearful dash to safety, her lithe back raked by angry claws. Nobody was to approach the new scratching post. It was all his and his alone. HISSS !!

Now, I knew Zorro could be territorial. The cat-nip in the Garden of Chaos has perished, completely stripped bare and soaked with scent-of-Zorro, nobody else tries to reside on the top of the Cupboard of Many Treasures, and when Zorro is sleeping in the Nest even the simians hesitate to occupy it. But this hogging of the new scratching post has set new standards of obsessive possessiveness. He all but wrote his name on it and he clearly intends it to be the sole user of it.

Even when he is not occupying the platform, or lying on the cupboard in ambush, his promise of dire wrath somehow lingers in the air and the other feline denizens can sometimes be observed staring forlornly at the empty and unused scratching post. They would so love a rub, or a rake, or even a quick sit-on… but they don’t dare. There’s always the quiet menace of an angry Zorro exploding into righteous anger and they all respect his merciless punishments. He doth rule by terror.

So now we’ve placed the scratching post elsewhere, next to the mill (don’t ask why we have a lathe and a mill in the living room, it’s just one of the many reason why ours is called the “House of Chaos”) and The Mistress’ computer. Zorro still occupies the platform from time to time, but since he can no longer dive-bomb the unwary user it seems to have lost some of its appeal and currently the other feline denizens are tolerated near it. A tolerance they have relished and celebrated with tentative face-rubs and scratches. They swiftly grew bolder when they noticed that Zorro would indeed not keep watch all the time and now Hrimnir and Frankette can sometimes been seen frolicking around it. Loup-Garou and Bean -Sidhe, older and wiser, have abstained from using the scratching post however. The fear doth lingers.

Yet with two frolicky kittens (they’re still one year old…) ravaging the scratching post I fear that Zorro’s enjoyment of the scratching post will be short-lived. They tend to wreck things thoroughly, and even though these scratching posts have been designed to withstand intensive kitty-use this one already sports the slightly haggard look of a scratching post well-used.

Picture below: The Lord and Master of All He Beholds on His Throne.

Zorro on his throne

Meh, it’s weekend again and that means… Friday Ark ! The Carnival of the Cats (Artsy Catsy) ! Weekend Cat Blogging (CatSynth)! Bad Kitty Cats Festival of Chaos (Samantha and Mr. Tigger) ! Ahhh… so many parties… so little time.

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