Lap Cats: A Photo Essay Slice of Life #sol19 21/31

Now that my mother has her new (my old) iPhone, we have gotten into the habit of texting each other with cat photos every morning. A “here’s the status of my lap, what about yours?” kind of thing.

As soon as I settle myself on the chaise–and sometimes before I’m settled–cats are claiming their space on my outstretched legs. There is always conflict, as Chipotle and Oliver both want the coveted top spot, and they slap and bite and pull each other’s hair out to get their way. And there is always more nudging and nestling and occasionally a bit of pushing and shoving as more cats arrive and need to claim a spot. Some mornings, I have five cats blanketing my legs. The drama on my lap, once Chipotle and Oliver have sorted it out and turned their heads in opposite directions so they can ignore everything except the warmth of their frenemy, is the quiet drama of the wedge: which head will tuck against which haunch?

My mother deals with a different kind of drama.

Yesterday, Wilhemina took the first round, while Fergus was left to look on and wait his turn.

The sound of turkeys drew Wilhemina out of the lap to the window, Fergus had left the room for a bite to eat to sustain more waiting in line, and Lola cut in front of him.

Fergus got back in line to wait:

Since Lola showed no sign of letting him have a turn, Fergus decided to up the ante and moved closer:

Finally, he just couldn’t take it anymore. He made his move and climbed on top of Lola:

Wilhemina was left to look over my mom’s shoulder and wait for her next opportunity:






25 responses to “Lap Cats: A Photo Essay Slice of Life #sol19 21/31”

  1. Amanda Potts Avatar

    First of all, a five-cat-blanket is really something else. Second, I literally laughed out loud when Fergus got on top of Lola. Poor Fergus: it is so hard to wait. Also, I love that you and your mom send these pictures back and forth. I think I would laugh all day long.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I love a five-cat blanket!! It’s like my dream come true! It really is hard for poor Fergus. It’s such a treat to get these photos all day long and see all their silly dynamics.

  2. arjeha Avatar

    Love this photo essay. I love watching the power play with the cats to see who will be top dog…sorry…top cat. I often wonder what is going through their minds as they circle and vie for the coveted position. I know there is nothing more comforting than a nice warm cat blanket

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I often wonder what’s going through their minds too. I can see that they’re having a lot of thoughts! A nice warm cat blanket is my favorite, and I certainly have enough cats to make sure I have a blanket whenever I wish!

  3. Juliana Ellington Avatar
    Juliana Ellington

    I always love one of your cat posts, and there can be nothing funnier than seeing your legs and lap covered by five full-grown kitties. I really enjoyed your photo essay of my cats and their morning routine. They are all endlessly interesting–yours and mine.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I am grateful for the idea for a slice in your series of texts!! And I am glad you find the cat farm as interesting as I do!

  4. Grace Hilsmier (@GraceHilsmier) Avatar

    Aaaah I love this! Especially the part about Fergus just sitting on top of the other cat. Cats know no obstacle they can’t overcome!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Yep! My five play a game of stacking hands in my lap every morning, though it’s really stacking cats. They aren’t remotely deterred by each other!

  5. Elizabeth Avatar

    I want five cats on a lap! I like your collection of black cats — they are all so glossy. Did Fergus used to be yours? He looks familiar.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Yes, Fergus did used to be mine. Actually, ALL my mom’s cats used to be my cats, except for Barbara, who did live here for a couple of months with her kittens but was still totally feral and definitely not my cat! Wilhemina began to fight with everybody years ago and went to grandma’s for a spa vacation weekend and loved it so much she never wanted to come home. Fergus and Lola were SO stressed over here that they mostly hid under the bed, so we tried them over there and they blossomed. I kept the four feral kittens, so my mom generously offered to take their mama. We have a cat exchange going, though I’m sure my mom would be the first to point out that so far, the exchange her been unidirectional!

  6. margaretsmn Avatar

    I just cleaned my one cat’s litter then read your post, grateful that I just have one cat. But sadly, she is not a lap cat.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Ha! I don’t usually clean the boxes, and that may be one reason why I think it’s so wonderful to have 7 cats!!

  7. Trina Haase Avatar
    Trina Haase

    You (and your mom) have such seriously beautiful cats! I hope that they appreciate how well-loved they are!

  8. carwilc Avatar

    What a crew you have!!!

  9. readingteachsu Avatar

    That’s a lot of cats in a lap!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      It really is! I would have never imagined I could squeeze five cats onto one lap!

  10. Ramona Avatar

    Fegus wins the prize for most frightening glare, Lola reminds me of my Hadley and Wilhelmina is absolutely gorgeous. I found myself trying to figure out the titles of books that peeked into the pics. But I was unsuccessful. Cats and books are surefire triggers that make me stop at a post!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Isn’t Wilhemina beautiful? She’s always been a very photogenic cat. My mom reads voraciously, so it’s no telling what was in her stacks! I feel exactly the same about cats and books as slice topics!

  11. karpenglish Avatar

    I send my sister and my mom “cat position” pictures all the time too. I think I might try to round some up and use them like comic panels and make dialogue and captions for them. Possibly this will still sound like a good slice in the morning, or possibly it will be an activity to do with my son and it will never see anyone else’s eyes. But it is spring break now and I have the luxury of spending some more time under a blanket, watching my own parade of revolving lap (and chest and arm and side and ankle) cats and thinking up silly dialogue.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I love this idea for a slice! You know I want to read it! I have been wanting to do a comic panel series of minimalist cat drawings. Maybe you will inspire me to get moving on that! Enjoy your spring break!

      1. karpenglish Avatar

        I am still musing on how to put it together, but I am going to give myself a couple of days to feel better first. Moms are always the first line of care taking and the last ones to get better.

  12. Amanda Regan Avatar

    This is fabulous! And makes me thankful I only have two cats!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Ha! I think I would feel very lonely with only two.

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