Comet’s Big Secret

Comet blended in well with the rocks in our yard.

Comet blended in well with the rocks in our yard.

This morning we made the very painful decision to euthanize Comet, whom many of you know as my furson and boy cat. Comet had developed a gallbladder blockage and jaundice. People can have their gallbladders removed. According to Dr. Sox at the Veterinary Emergency and Referral Center of Hawaii, cats don’t survive the surgical procedure very well. We tried antibiotics and prednisone (yes, I guess animals can be treated with steroids, too), but Comet didn’t improve. The gallbladder could burst at any given moment, so we made this decision based on what the outlook would be for Comet’s quality of life. Days and nights were spent under our bed, with trips to the water bowl and kitty litter box, and back. Minimal socialization. Kitty Girl hissed because Comet smelled “different.” 

Comet's first visit to the doctor.

Comet’s first visit to the doctor.

Three weeks ago when we took Comet in to see Dr. Sox we were informed that our Comet was a GIRL. Comet and her two sisters were born in our garage 10 years ago. I caught them in the have-a-heart trap one at a time, took them to the Humane Society and promised to take care of these feral kittens. In exchange they were spayed. Comet’s paperwork indicated she was a he and neutered. Go figure. Everyone makes a mistake with paperwork, right? It never occurred to me in all these years to part the fur and see for myself. And when cats are kittens it’s really hard to tell if there are fuzzy little balls or just a butt down there. 

Kitty Girl, the last of three Bender kitty siblings, aka, Chief of Security.

Kitty Girl, the last of three Bender kitty siblings, aka, Chief of Security.

It was quite a shock for us to receive this news. Not that we were disappointed, it’s just that Comet was such a boy in our eyes. Comet came with a frisky trot when called, could never pull off being aloof, and enjoyed sneaking up and pouncing on Kitty Girl whenever the opportunity presented itself. When tom cats would come into the garage and eat their food, Kitty Girl was the one who mixed it up with them. Maybe it was because she was in charge of security, but Comet rarely opened more than an eye when the toms came by. And I was pretty certain Comet was one of the guys, so to speak, as they’d hang out in the backyard together. Tom cats stink, so I always chased them away. 

So after Comet was outted as a she instead of a he, we adjusted our pronouns. We couldn’t care less. I just think we would have raised her differently had we known she was a chubby chick instead of a big guy. I always gave my boy cat extra brisk full body massages. Maybe I would have been gentler had I known Comet was a she. 

I’d lie if I didn’t say I cried all the way home. Losing Comet — this cat who stood on her hind legs to stroke her face along my hands, the cat who always gardened with me, hung out with me while I wrote on this computer (verklempt this very moment), and loved me unconditionally — has brought me to a very sad place today. 

Our world gives us gracious companions. When I rake the backyard the lizards watch as I stir up bugs for them to eat. When I walk into Kid2’s room, her betta fish swims excitedly just to get me to make duck lips at him. When I go out to harvest some of my vegetables from the garden, Kitty Girl inspects the pots and brushes up against the rosemary. When I swim, ride my bike, or run, I am always watching for the lovely creatures with which we share this planet. 

And I cannot help but be certain that their souls live on and that we shall meet again. Good-bye, sweet Comet. You were our gift. 

Is this Your Big, Beautiful Cat?


This gallery contains 6 photos.

A few weeks ago, I busted a handsome, big, bushy-tailed cat eating our cats’ food in the garage where we have an enclosed food hutch. It’s designed to keep out birds and dumb feral cats. It’s for our own cats. … Continue reading

Birthdays & Other Holidays


This gallery contains 1 photo.

@postaday 348; #postaday2011. Next Monday is my birthday, which I share with one of my sisters-in-law who lives here in the Islands. The next day is my brother’s birthday, he lives back in New Jersey. Today I went to Walmart … Continue reading

Praying prey; a quick bicycle ride to Diamond Head and back.

John shoots while Kitty Girl patiently waits to kill.

@postaday 207; #postaday2011.

My family brought me home from work last night. I met them at WalMart and we headed home when we were done. John drove his Honda Fit into town, so by the time we headed back to our Hawaii Kai Hale, the back was full of things like a new Crockpot, dozens of flavors of shampoos and conditioners, little plants for the garden, and my work gear. We stopped on the way home for one more thing at Tamura’s on 10th Avenue in Palolo. Actually a half-dozen, but who’s counting? You won’t believe that Friday Pau Hana crowd at Tamura’s!!

The victim.

The praying mantis clinging to the Honda Fit.

Somewhere on the way home we picked up a praying mantis. Such a gorgeous creature! I brought John out to the driveway to see and he took some photos. I took pix of him taking pix. Behind him you can see Kitty Girl.

The Killer.

Who me? Kitty Girl is a ruthless killer. We should call her Killer Girl.

A few minutes later she made prey of the praying mantis. There she was so pleased with herself and two limbs under her nose. That cat is ruthless.

Today’s ride was launched late, so we did the basic Hawaii Kai to Diamond Head loop. The wind is merciless. We had a fine ride: uneventful and fairly quick. I need a nap.

The Hill Killer

I'm in my Bee Crazy jersey!

A birthday milestone

I had sent an email to some of friends on the eve of my 50th birthday about the birthday card from my mom. She was there back on 12/12/1958 when I popped out. My goodness, how can I be 50?


I expected the card to be hilarious, in keeping with her, and my, sense of humor. But it was actually quite encouraging and contemplative. How do I feel? Amazing. Grateful. Like dancing and laughing and getting up every morning at 330 to workout because there is so much to live for: a great husband, two amazing daughters, and so many friends.


Here’s what the card says:


Not over the hill

But on top of the mountain

That kind of youth

Doesn’t come from a fountain,

But flows from a heart

That is caring and giving,

Dreams that are dared,

A passion for living—

From tears and laughter

With no room for regrets…

And a smile that says,

You ain’t seen nothin’ yet!



Furboy Comet with a gift of avocados. He's such a sincere feline fellow. 

Furboy Comet with a gift of avocados. He’s such a sincere feline fellow.

So if you’re circling the airport, not sure you’re eager to approach Runway 30, 40 or 50, let me encourage you to put out your landing gear and glide in with a style that only experience gives you. So many people can benefit from knowing each of us. And we know enough to understand how well others bless us.


I’m pretty excited about it all, but, that’s how I’ve been for the last 49 birthdays, LOL!


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