Ask Max Monday: There’s gonna be a hairball…

Ask Max Monday

What will you be doing to entertain the troops during this undoubted crisis of humanity, and B (not that there was an A) To spot the humans being OVER attentive with the grubby paws – well overly sterilised paws. OK there is a third. C) How does one stop a human from trying to bathe their cat. And if they should be so inclined, what should they be using and how and what compensation would be appropriate for such an experience 😉
Purrs from an admiring fellow Tux

Well, my people are mostly self-entertaining, so I’ve been concentrating on trying to keep other people busy. I put all my Wick books up for free (just hop on over to my blog to get the links to download them—quickly because some of the links expire on the 3rd—and you might have to scroll down to get to the posts that have them all) to give people some things to read. That should kill a good wee or two, and maybe they’ll find other stuff to read, too.

If my people get overly attentive, I’ll just hide under the bed or in a closet. And dood, they NEVER try to bathe me. They know better. But if yours do, they should do it properly. With their tongues. And remind them to work with the grain of the fur and not against it, so they don’t make it hurt and don’t yank on anything by accident.

If they do it, they can pay you in steak or crunchy treats. That only seems fair.

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Dear Max,

The Little Girl is off playing army again (mom says she’s an army medic and got called up to help with testing for something or other), so we have the d-o-g here again, and I can’t stand it! It wants to be friends even though I hiss and give the whappy paw. But what I want to know is, why can’t i have the dog food? It smells great, better even than our cat food, although the dog disagrees and says our food smells better. Why does the mom chase me away from the dog food?

Enigma SissyCat

Ohhhhh I remember dog food. When Hank the Dog was still alive he and I had this same thing going on. I wanted his, he wanted mine. He really couldn’t get to mine, though, but he almost always left me one bite and some gravy from his, just because he knew I would like it. As long as he was done, no one chased me away from it…I think they just wanted to be sure that he got enough to eat, and that I didn’t exist on dog food alone.

Face it, we have different nutritional needs. Otherwise instead of “cat food” and “dog food” it would just be “food.” Your mom probably chases you away for the same reasons: the dog needs to eat, and you need to have mostly cat-appropriate foods.

I’m not sure why you’re giving him the whappy-paw, though. I miss having Hank. We didn’t, like, sleep together or anything but he was a happy dog and a great friend. Your dog could be that, too. And if you get friendly enough and he’s big enough, he might even give you rides! LIKE YOUR OWN PONY. How cool would that be???

= = =

Max, my kids keep telling me about social distancing and how it can save my life. I agreed to do it. Now all my club friends and gym friends are calling me to video chat, and it feels rude to not answer. I don’t know what to do or what to tell them, but I promised my kids. I don’t understand most of it, either. But I do remember that one of your humans is in medicine and you might be able to help me figure out what the harm is. I’d like to at least talk to friends and I’ve cried almost every night because of it all.

[note: I got this in email and already answered it via email because it seemed timely, and also on my blog. But I’m running it today, too, because there might be those out there who don’t read my blog and might want to know, too. Because it’s not always obvious, okay?]

All right. No worries, you’re fine. You can answer your video chats without worrying about breaking the social distancing rules.

This is when better phrasing would help. People under 50 might grasp exactly what social distancing means, but the older crowd, where a lot of the cool kids are, might not. And don’t feel bad; those kids who are on your virtual lawn playing where they’ve probably been asked not to probably don’t grok the language of your youth, either.

I think the better term, one I heard yesterday, is physical distancing. It has nothing to do with being social. Trust me, people are finding ways to be social, even going so far as to have in-person meetings with neighbors…while sitting in lawn chairs more than 6 feet apart, while they drink coffee and just hang out. Or something better than coffee.

Be social with the friends who are calling. It’s important that you keep those connections. Talking to other people is vital; maintaining those friendships is vital. Technology has been an amazing tool for people who are doing the right thing and self-isolating. They’re still able to see their friends and talk to their friends, and many of them have learned to do group video chats and spend hours just talking and laughing.

So go for it. Answer the calls, and have as much fun with your friends as you can. I’m super happy you’re tech savvy enough to video chat, but even regular phone calls are pretty freaking sweet. Go ahead, surprise someone, and pick up the phone to call. Hearing your voice is totally going to make someone’s day.

= = =

Doods…I know this is hard. Staying home when you want to is one thing; staying home because you have to is another. But I am super impressed with how seriously most of you are taking this, and I am grateful for it.

You’re awesome.

I just thought you should know that.

= = =

Got a question? Drop me a line at or leave it in the comments here.

2 thoughts on “Ask Max Monday: There’s gonna be a hairball…

  1. Max, how did you skore that sweet job as an intern in yer ma’s office? I’d like to kuntriboryoot, but my ma keeps pushing me away or lokking her door win she goze ZOOM. And why iz it called ZOOM if she’s just sitting her butt in a chare and not zooming anywhere?

  2. Max, the only reason any cat would need a bath is if they’ve got something gross stuck to their fur, or they need flea shampoo. Any other reason is just wrong…right?

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