August 26th, 2011

laszlo moholy-nagy_chx

Oh, Dear

It's odd, but I never really took a close look at the feral kittens until today. My regular glasses don't give me a very clear view of anything up close (and are no longer all that good for seeing things in the distance, either,) and my reading glasses are usually sitting in the house when I go outside. Today I went out while wearing my reading glasses, and two of the three kittens were close enough and calm enough that I could take a good look at them. Although I always thought that Timmy and the other two-toned kitten were males, it looks like they are both actually female.

I've always thought that the tabby kitten was female. If, once I get a good look, it turns out to be male, I'll be 0 for 3. But I think I have probably been right about the tabby. The two kittens who vanished from the original litter of five were probably the males, and it was probably Tommy Two-Tone who snatched them. He probably killed his potential rivals and let the females survive as potential future mates.

The kittens have probably outlived Tommy, though. I haven't seen him since a few days after they were born. In fact the night he probably snatched the last of the male kittens was the last time I remember seeing him. Old Gray cat, small gray cat, and Alger all disappeared about the same time. I thought it was only Farah running them off that kept them away, but now I'm beginning to think that animal control might have made a visit to the ares and trapped a lot of feral cats about that time. If they did, then Farah was saved by being stuck here with her new kittens.

But four female kitties could prove to be a real problem in the future. Especially if they all think of my yard as their home. I could end up feeding an entire colony of cats if they all get pregnant. Oh, dear. Time to see about some spaying.
bazille_summer scene

Heating

I might end up using the air conditioner this summer after all. Not only is the town getting baked today, it's expected to stay fairly warm all night, and tomorrow will be even hotter than today has been. If the house can't be cooled sufficiently by having the windows open tonight, it's going to become intolerable by tomorrow afternoon. The pattern of hot days and warm nights could last for several days, so there might be quite a bit of air conditioning in my future. I'll try to keep it to a minimum, but there's a limit to how much clothing I can remove.

This hot spell will probably be the last straw for the front lawn, meaning that it will at last become entirely the color of straw, with no trace of green remaining. It won't be that big a difference. The small amount of green it still sports is mostly confined to small patches of bunch grass of indeterminate origin. This species was not part of the original lawn, so it must be an invader, but it has proven to be hardier than the lawn grass. Maybe it will eventually take over completely.

There's also a small patch of what I suspect might be some variety of cordgrass, right near the front porch, which has managed to stay green by capturing a bit of the water I put on the adjacent flower bed. Aside from those few patches, the front yard already looks like a worn out mat with a few bushes growing out of it. Sad.

The heat has put me into slower motion than ever. I've gotten next to nothing done today, and I don't feel much like doing anything now— not even cooking dinner. I'd make a simple grilled cheese sandwich, but I'm out of cheese. I'll probably end up just boiling some pasta and heating some sauce from a jar and tossing in those leftover mushrooms that are about to go inedible. There's stale bread that would make good garlic toast, but I don't want to turn on the oven long enough to make that.

At least I'm not running out of beer yet.