Household Glossary

I posted this early on in my blog, but thought that I would reproduce it here. I will also add to it as new terms occur to me.

A Glossary of Terms
It's funny how words take on new meanings in a household.  Here's some examples of words that have permutated in ours...

Petromalt:  To most people, this is a brand of goo that you can feed your cat to help treat hairballs.  In our household, it is a fine delicacy - Bit goes bonkers over it.  She reminds us at least once a day that she would like some now, okay fine thanks.  She really only gets it twice a week, but all we have to do is open the drawer that we keep it in and we'll hear her running to us, from wherever she is in the house.

Sock Box:  I'm going to go out on a limb and admit something here:  I detest matching and folding socks.  I hate it so much that I don't even attempt it anymore - we have two "sock boxes," one for whites, one for dress socks, and I just throw the clean ones in the boxes.  These are highly prized as kitty beds, and it is not uncommon to see Charlotte asleep on top of the white socks.  Sometimes we even have to move her to get to the socks that we want to wear that day.

Narnia:  And you thought that Narnia was just a kids' story.  Actually, Narnia is our basement.  It's totally not animal safe, with all of the old chemicals that former owners left behind, and has a gigantic open crawl space that I do NOT want the cats getting into.  Since the basement is forbidden, it has taken on a special mythical glamor for them.  The times that they do get down there, their eyes are wide and they're looking around in stunned amazement.  Narnia.

Squirrels:  Small, sadistic creatures that rule the back yard.  They do acrobatics outside the windows, sometimes even landing on the outside window sills (on the second story, even!) just to torment the cats.  They also ate my jack-o-lantern, the little jerks.

"No Kitty":  This is how we decided to train Argos to leave the cats alone, since sighthounds are instinctually wired to chase.  He is so eager to please that what that translates into is that if we say "No Kitty" or sometimes if he even sees a cat, he will practically break his neck or turn his entire body around to show us that he isn't even looking at the cat.  Good boy.

Big Scary Monster (TM):  This is how Bit still views Argos.  Despite the fact that he's never shown her much interest.  He's more interested in Annie, probably because she is the one that interacts with him the most often.  (And by interact, I don't mean snuggle.)

Interact:  This generally means that one of the animals is trying to cow one of the other animals into submission - they are interacting with one another.  Charlotte smacks Annie, Annie chases Bit, Annie slaps Argos in the nose, Bit attacks Charlotte's tail.  It's neverending.

Play Time:  The cats go "live" around 10:30 or 11:00 PM, which coincidentally is when we're trying to get to sleep.  It's kind of hard to sleep when you hear three sets of thundering paws running and leaping and slamming into things all over the house.  Even Argos, tucked safely into his bed in his crate, sighs about this.

Mr. Gator:   Poor Mr. Gator.  He was once a bright green alligator, but has become Argos' most favored chew toy.  He is now completely encrusted in dog slobber, and his once-proud 16 squeakers are down to two.  Don't tell Mr. Gator, but his replacement is currently being housed in our front closet, for the day when Argos finally destroys him.

Little Red Dot:  Little Red Dot frequently comes out to play with the cats.  It's actually from a laser pointer, but I'm convinced that at least one of the cats thinks that the red dot lives under the radiator.

Ladies:  These are innocent women that walk around our neighborhood, that are the objects of Argos' fascinated attention.  He loves women a LOT.  I think it's because women tend to make a bigger fuss over him when we're out walking.  He soaks up the attention as if we NEVER shower him with affection and praise. I have gotten somewhat good at judging whether individual women are actually afraid of large dogs (or just don't care to interact with him) and have to actively restrain him from bounding up to them like they're long-lost friends.

Afternoon Snack:  This is, sadly, my Boston fern, at least as far as Annie is concerned.  She literally grazes from this plant.  You can yell at her all you want, she may well come back five minutes later if she's really intent on getting her greens.

Walkies:  These are the highlights of Argos' day, and he will cavort wildly around, dancing and throwing his head up in the air if he even sees the leash or hears it jingle as I get it out.

Cookie:  These do not refer to anything that I would consider a cookie, but are dog treats, usually something resembling a Milkbone.  If I even ask Argos if he wants one, he'll wake up out of a stone-cold slumber and bounce to his feet.  If  I begin to walk near the closet that they're kept in, he goes into super-alert mode, and if I open the door, he is glued to my hip as if by magic.  Once given to him, he carries the cookie over to his living room bed, turns his back to us completely, and eats it with gusto.

Warm:  As in "a warm."  Noun.  My husband and I are both considered "warms" by the cats, and in the wintertime, their affection levels magically go up.  If we sit or lie still for very long, chances are very high that we will have at least one of them trying to steal our heat.

Poop Run:  This is what Argos does when turned out into the yard for a bathroom break.  He goes as far back as he can get, and then runs up and down the length of the fence several times until he eventually poops. We have no idea of why he does it this way.

Vicks Vaporub:  I tend to put this stuff on really thick when I'm congested, to help me breathe at night when I sleep.  Only it's as enthralling as catnip to Annie.  She will do everything she can to get near me when I have it on, after which she will attempt to lick it off of me, rub her face in it, and burrow into my skin, purring like a maniac the whole time.

Cookie Man:  This is a crossing guard in our neighborhood, who makes it a point to carry milkbones in his pocket, which he kindly gives to everyone's dogs when we walk by.  Argos adores him, and if we happen to walk to that intersection on the weekend, I see him looking for his friend in vain.

Bath time:  One of my indulgences is that I like to soak in a hot tub of water to relax at night.  This fascinates all of the animals except for Romeo, who is terrified to be in the bathroom while the water is running.  I tend to leave the door open, and I have an endless procession of Argos and the girl cats coming in and checking on me, peering over the edge, and then leaving when they see that I'm okay.

Guarding: This is what Annie does when one of us is bathing or showering.  She positions herself just outside of the bath tub, facing towards the door, and guards us for the entire time.  We have no idea of what she thinks that she's guarding us from, and I'm not sure that I want to know.

Yard Snack:  Alas, there is a neighborhood cat that I have never seen, but uses our yard as the occasional toilet.  I always know when he's been here, because Argos goes straight to it and eats the poop.  Yuck.  I'm glad that he doesn't give kisses very often.

The Psycho:  Of all the kinds of dogs that could potentially menacing, in our neighborhood it is a basset hound.  He hates other dogs with a passion, and barks and howls ferociously at us if he sees.  I've seen him hurling his sturdy little body repeatedly at the picture window of his living room when we walk by, and can hear his owner yelling at him in Russian.  It's so bad that I've taken to either avoiding that section of the street altogether or at least crossing to walk on the other side when we get near his house.

Stinkbugs:  These are the best cat toys ever, and I can plan on having the cats be entertained for hours if there is one flying around the house.  It's rather frightening when the thing is in flight, because we have cats crashing from chair to chair, and they don't care if they land on us, or if they leap over a sleeping Argos.  Once the bug is smacked out of the air, it provides at least several more minutes of entertainment as the cats take turns flipping it onto its back and watching it try to right itself.  Sadists.

Gooshy Food:  This is something close to heaven for Romeo.  He can hear me pop open a can from clear across the house.  I will immediately hear him thudding to the floor and he gallops for all that he is worth towards me, howling like a crazed creature the entire way.

Bathroom Time:  This is when I clean the litter boxes, morning and evening.  As soon as it is scooped out and the litter is tied off in a bag, a procession of cats will come in and immediately use the box.