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Are cats the silent guardians of used book shoppes?

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  • Are cats the silent guardians of used book shoppes?

    I have noticed a phenomenon over the last ten years. It seems that 99% of the used book stores that I go to have one or many felines wandering around the shelves and bookcases while customers are browsing. :D

    I noticed that alot of Miscellany members and Mike himself has cats. I too love cats. I used to have three of them, but I don't have any right now. I go over to my friend's house to play with their cats. :lol:

    Anyway, are cats the most intelligent of the animal kingdom?, do they possess some mystical force that draws them to book readers and authors? Cats appear in many stories, they sure do show up alot in Fantasy and Science-Fiction novels. What power do they hold over us? Does anyone else think they are the guardians of the written word? Did you ever come accross a similar experience of shopping and the cat comes up to you and appears to guide you through the store? Perhaps it was making a suggestion on what to buy? A paticular snow white cat followed me around then went behind the counter when I was ready to leave. White, calico and orange are the most common ones that I see it stores. A friend of mine has a really cool grey cat.

    By the way cat-like reflexes are no joke, one day the cat was playing with a toy mouse and I would take the mouse and try to pull it away before the cat could catch it. One day the cat was on the other side of a cardboard box,there was a hole in the box that I dangled the mouse through and the cat did not see my hand so it continued to claw at the mouse. One time I was too slow :lol: Instead of the cat catching the soft mouse, it reached a little high and grabbed my finger, the claw,curved as it was,stuck in beside the nail so I had to gently take it's little paw and move it towards me a little to get it out. The cat was fine. That will teach me to try to outsmart a cat. ;)

    Anyway,that was my cat story for today.

    Those felines have to know something that humans don't, I'd like to know what it is. I am happy that cats stroll around in old book stores, you just don't get that effect in chain stores. :clap:

    "With a deep, not-unhappy sigh, Elric prepared to do battle with an army." (Red Pearls)
    - Michael Moorcock

  • #2
    There presence is in part cautionary, they remind you that your significant other has brought up the subject of not being a Pack Rat.

    sorry, abouve should abliviously redt "thayure" inplcax ofv theres. :)
    "A man is no man who cannot have a fried mackerel when he has set his mind on it; and more especially when he has money in his pocket to pay for it." - E.A. Poe's NICHOLAS DUNKS; OR, FRIED MACKEREL FOR DINNER

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    • #3
      Re: Are cats the silent guardians of used book shoppes?

      Originally posted by lemec
      Cats appear in many stories, they sure do show up alot in Fantasy and Science-Fiction novels. What power do they hold over us?
      Are you familiar with Neil Gaiman's episode 'A Dream of a Thousand Cats' from The Sandman comic?

      Originally posted by Wikipedia
      A Dream of a Thousand Cats

      This is a curious story concerning an inspirational cat with a vision of an alternate reality where cats are huge and humans merely their playthings, tiny servants which groom their bodies and which the cats can kill at their pleasure. She preaches her vision to motley assortments of wild cats around the world, hoping that if she can make enough believe in and dream of this reality, the world will change to conform to their dreams. Although seemingly a complete diversion from the basic story of the Sandman, it in fact illustrates one of the core themes of the series: the idea that reality is shaped in the most literal sense by the dreams, beliefs, and expectations of humans (and, in this case, of other animals as well).

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_San..._Thousand_Cats
      That's a great little story. My favourite feline in comics though (excluding Selina Kyle ;)) is Raul from Howard Chaykin's American Flagg! comic series.

      Originally posted by Wikipedia
      Raul the cat, an intelligent, talking orange tabby housecat. With the exception of his intelligence and his ability to speak (an ability whose origin is never explained), he appears to be otherwise a normal house pet. However, he has a customized set of cybernetic gloves, designed by Mandy Krieger, that give him opposable thumbs.
      _"For an eternity Allard was alone in an icy limbo where all the colours were bright and sharp and comfortless.
      _For another eternity Allard swam through seas without end, all green and cool and deep, where distorted creatures drifted, sometimes attacking him.
      _And then, at last, he had reached the real world – the world he had created, where he was God and could create or destroy whatever he wished.
      _He was supremely powerful. He told planets to destroy themselves, and they did. He created suns. Beautiful women flocked to be his. Of all men, he was the mightiest. Of all gods, he was the greatest."

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      • #4
        I'm more a dog person.

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        • #5
          :D Thanks for all the replies!

          A Dream of a Thousand Cats sounds really cool. I have heard of Sandman,but never read it. I will add that to my quest list.

          That American Flagg! comic looks great! 8) I must get to Kool Collectibles or another comic shop and find those,they will be most enjoyable.

          Demos, did you ever see the movie comedy "Free Enterprise"? There is a great scene where the characters are in a comic book store and the guy meets a girl there who is a fan of Sandman, he wanted to buy the copy she was holding and he was astonished to find out that she was the one reading comics and not just buying them for somebody. It's one of those movies where you see yourself and your friends in the characters.

          "With a deep, not-unhappy sigh, Elric prepared to do battle with an army." (Red Pearls)
          - Michael Moorcock

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          • #6
            Oh! another cat tale. I dressed up one Halloween in a long black robe that had a red hood. It also had a thin black cloth that covered your face inside the hood. You could see out but you could not see in. Anyway, I stood in front of the kitchen counter so my friends could take a photo. The kitchen was all dark and so was the room beyond,except for a small candle. The counter was one of those that also had a shelf that was about shoulder level. So, one of my friends went to take the picture and his black cat jumped up on the shelf right behind me and looked over my shoulder and straight into the camera. The photograph was taken and when the Polaroid was ready, it had an eerie effect to it. I had no features of course since it was black, but the cat's eyes shone in the darkness and it kinda had that wizard's familiar look to it, like my soul was in the cat or my eyes were floating around behind my shoulder! :lol: It was really wild, I could not have planned a better shot.

            "With a deep, not-unhappy sigh, Elric prepared to do battle with an army." (Red Pearls)
            - Michael Moorcock

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Are cats the silent guardians of used book shoppes?

              Originally posted by lemec
              Those felines have to know something that humans don't, I'd like to know what it is.
              Cats know Everything! I see my cat Missy sitting around with a smile on her face, as if to say: ''If only you knew what I know, Monkey-boy!!''

              They can also see through Time and into Other Dimensions, too.

              I had noticed that about two of the three used bookstores that I (used to) frequent.

              The cat in one of them would get scratchies when I would kneel down to check the lower shelves, and would about climb my leg to get more when I stood up. I finally got in the habit of just picking him up and carrying him, and scratching him, as I checked the shelves.

              Maybe they're also Mouse Police in the stores? Rodents would love to chew up books (I think).
              Madness is always the best armor against Reality

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              • #8
                I know a small movie theater by a friends house we frequent time to time and they too have a cat wandering the aisle. What makes it interesting is thaat no matter what, that cat will sit on my friends lap everytime he's there to see a movie! :D

                It seems compulsory for an author to have cats! I have an old Dune edition where Frank Herbert's acknowledgements include, what he called: the familiar of writers - his cat! I myself don't have pets, and never liked cats, but each day I seem more drawn to gettin' one - strange!

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                • #9
                  Cats and books just go together, so it makes sense that cats and buying books go together, as well. I always think a bookstore is better if it offers feline companionship-- it says something about the owners' good character. :)


                  For what it's worth, I always like reading with feline company. I like keeping my cats off of my shelves far less :D

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                  • #10
                    :D very cool.

                    Those are all wonderful and interesting comments. 8)

                    Cats live fun lives for sure!

                    "With a deep, not-unhappy sigh, Elric prepared to do battle with an army." (Red Pearls)
                    - Michael Moorcock

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                    • #11
                      imagine a house where a cat "male" marries a dog "female" !! me and my husband are that way. and it shows. but it all works out.

                      cats are magic and there's no getting around that. they can appear/disappear at will and you know? the Puritans had a REASON to worry about cats! ;)

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Poetgrrl
                        cats are magic and there's no getting around that. they can appear/disappear at will and you know? the Puritans had a REASON to worry about cats! ;)
                        And the ancient Egyptians had a reason to worship them, as well Of course, as the old line goes, they haven't let us forget about that, either. :)

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                        • #13
                          'For They shall inherit the Earth...' just as soon as they get their paws on the tin-openers...

                          I'm engaged in writing a cat-heavy novel as we speak...second-hand bookshop, too :|

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                          • #14
                            oh dear... will rita mae brown be nervous?

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                            • #15
                              Perdix wrote:
                              I'm engaged in writing a cat-heavy novel as we speak...second-hand bookshop, too
                              Ha! I knew the legends must be true! :lol: I was right, I figured I was not the only one to make the great cat/bookshop connection. Now that one mystery is solved I can go on to another. :D

                              I would very much like to read you novel Perdix.

                              I am sure it will be purrrrrrrfect!

                              "With a deep, not-unhappy sigh, Elric prepared to do battle with an army." (Red Pearls)
                              - Michael Moorcock

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