Thou shalt not commit petadultery

Bless me, mother, for I have sinned. I have committed petadultery.

Luna. A perfectly satisfactory pet.

Although I have a perfectly (purrfectly? No, let’s not go there) satisfactory pet, I am lusting after another pet in my heart.

Yes, I’ll tell you all about it, but first, a warning.

Words to the wise

Unless you despise cats, dislike good works, and hate humor, do NOT click any of the links in this post. They lead to seemingly innocent blog posts that will snag you in the claws of a dangerous cult. Soon, you too will be following the Leader. You will be a Disciple of Otis — no, I’m not going to make that into a link — resist, Rhiannon, resist!

Well, you see how well that worked. Let me tell you more about this insidious cult.

By this sign shall you know it.

Ostensibly, the Cult of Otis exists to persuade people to keep their cats safely confined and try to help cats in need. In fact, it’s a snare that, using the Art of Sneaky, will reduce you to gazing raptly at photos of other people’s pets and dreaming up hilarious atrocious cat-related puns.

You may even find yourself building an Outdoor Domain or constructing a Potty Pod 3000. Think how foolish you’ll feel! Especially if you don’t own a cat.

Introducing my pawamour

Yes, I’ve given up fighting the puns.

“Please sir, I want to join the Cult of Otis.”

There might be an excuse for my petadultery if my pawamour were a waif like Oliver Twist, abandoned and in need of help. But though that was once true of Thomas, he has been adopted by the Guardians of the Cult of Otis. For cats, this is akin to a person winning the Nobel Peace Prize, the lottery, and a free lifetime supply of chocolate.

It’s useless to pretend that I would make a better owner than the Guardians. I haven’t got a Tabby Tower or a White Cloud of Eternal Comfiness. Plus there’s only one of me, and I’m often distracted by work (“bloody hell, another spreadsheet”), domestic chores (“damn, I’m out of chocolate again”), and my mystery novel (“would it be more interesting if the corpse was in drag?”).

More about my pawamour

Ten seconds and counting …

So I can’t have Thomas. Besides, while I’m poring raptly over the Cult archives, Luna is sometimes forced to spend whole seconds in her Lying On My Back Looking Adorable pose before I jump up to refresh her water dish or give her a treat. If I’m that neglectful of one cat, I have no right to ask for a second.

But I can’t stop dwelling on photos of Thomas. He has a good build, long hair, and a wistful expression, three attributes that I find desirable in cats. (And in men, but that’s another blog post.) His muzzle is half-white and half-tan, and his whiskers are positively Victorian.

Cat with no whiskers
No whiskers. Still attractive.
Mind you, his companions — Henry (17 pounds of tabby fury), Oliver (the Brains of the Cult), and the esteemed Leader, green-eyed Otis himself — are also come-hitherly handsome. Don’t think you’re protected just because you don’t care for long-hairs (or long whiskers). It’s still not safe to click these links!

Luna and i discuss my petadultery

“It’s not you,” I keep telling her. “It’s me.”

Luna: So exercise self-control, like me. Do I ever kill mice or birds? No! No matter how deliciously tempting they are.

Me: You can’t catch mice or birds because there aren’t any in my house.

Luna: Well, but if there were, I would exercise self-control. Maybe I should pee on your laptop. Try looking at cat porn then.

“Help! I need a new caregiver!”

Me: I could use a smartphone.

Luna: You’re too cheap to buy one.

Me: Looking at other cats only serves to increase my love for you.

Luna: Right. Then I’m off to look at other caregivers.

I pull myself together

Mr. Clough. Victorian whiskers.
At this point I realize that I’m engaged in an imaginary conversation with a cat. It’s time to refresh my memory of the Ten Commandments, using Arthur Hugh Clough’s updated version, The Latest Decalogue.

Hey! Adultery is proscribed, but petadultery isn’t mentioned!

And now, since Luna has indeed gone off to look out the window, I think I’ll just mosey over to the Cult of Otis blog and look at a few more pictures of Thomas.


Aren’t you glad I warned you not to click those Cult of Otis links? I did you a favor there, eh?

Hello? Is anyone reading this?

Damn cats.

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10 thoughts on “Thou shalt not commit petadultery

  1. My blessings upon you, My Disciple! Thomas would like to thank you personally for all of the kind words, but he is currently overcome by fit of blushing the likes of which I have never seen. 🙂

    – Leader Otis

  2. Thank you for your blessings, Leader Otis. I’m sorry I made Thomas blush so much, but I’m sure he looks totally adorable while he’s — oops, there I go again!

  3. Oh Rhiannon! I, too, have fallen under the spell of the Leader and the Brothers. I, too, willfully ignore my three (!) furkids to fawn over the Leader. I, too, dream of living in a house with a deck large enough for a catio. You are not alone. The Leader’s disciples are many. 🙂

  4. I, too, am devoted to the Cult of Otis (We have an Otis of our own, who may be a cousin if looks have anything to do with it). We are owned by 7 distinctly different purry personalities. 4 at home; 3 at our business. Can’t get enough. Back on topic, pull yourself together, Luna may be disgruntled because she has been referred to as ‘purrfectly satisfactory’. Satisfactory is not in the cat dictionary. I suggest copious amounts of treats.

  5. Wouldn’t Luna and Thomas look beautiful together! Maybe you can “sell” him to Luna as a potential paramour even if he is, most likely, eunuchiferous.

  6. Great to hear from you, Margot. Between them, Luna and Thomas would produce beautiful kittens, but sadly, neither cat is reproduction-ready at this point (love your word “eunuchiferous”!), so their offspring will have to remain imaginary.

  7. No, Amy, it’s not just you. As I tried to convey in this post, the Cult of Otis practices a very powerful Art of Sneaky. Otherwise, how would we strong-minded women have been sucked in? But I thank you for taking sufficient time away from Otis and his companions to read and comment on my blog.

  8. Fellow Disciple Christine, I take comfort from the fact that, like Amy, you were able to pull yourself away from the Leader’s magnetic gaze long enough to read a blog other than the Otis’s. Perhaps there’s hope that I will at least still be able to earn a living. But, when I’m not doing that, I’ll look for you and Amy at Cult HQ.

  9. Nancy, you were right about Luna. Once the adjectives “gorgeous,” “clever,” “exemplary,” and “world’s best” had been applied to her, together with copious pets and extra treats, she decided to continue using me as her caregiver. I am, she tells me, “satisfactory.”

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