Notes from a parish cat and his author Julie Mackenzie

My photo
I am Father Tom Fish, esteemed member of the religious team at Temptation of Christ Parish in the novels by author Julie Mackenzie. As to my background, I was invited into the rectory as a stray, laid on the charm, and was invited to stay, even honorarily ordained and no less spiritual than my sidekick Father Will. He dotes on me to high heaven and forgives all of my street cat proclivities, whatever the hell that means.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 - Over and Out!

Today's been a busy day here. I'm always torn between my curiosity and what I'll find out, and the urge to run like hell and hide. Sometimes I get so man-handled (women-handled not so bad) that I feel like I've been violated. But, I always take a quick inventory and find that the family jewels are still intact.

Had the ultimate pleasure of watching a little telly last night. You'll have to excuse me. It was British comedy--my favorite, Vicar of Digby--which I love and the expressions always rub off. Another word I go crazy over is "snog," as long as someone isn't doing it to me! I was all cat smiles and Will was laughing so hard there was no sitting in his lap. I was in heaven, which for a church cat doesn't happen as often as you might think.

What I enjoy depends on my mood and actually, Will's, too. In spite of the fact that I call him really stupid names, we're very close. I sense his vulnerability as I think sometimes he fears he's in over his head. I give him a leg rub or I nuzzle his hand and purr to reassure him that he's right where he's supposed to be. God knows the ladies of the parish wouldn't want him anywhere else. 

And finally, as we say goodbye to another year here at Temptation Parish, just a quick meow-out to new friends Harry Spotter, AlberttheCat in UK, Karen & Piper in Canadog, and my very own CeeCee buddy, Beth. 

Happy New Year!



Saturday, December 26, 2009

Something festive this way came...

Well, I did it. I made my Christmas entrance in the church yesterday to the ooohs and aaahs of all the cat lovers in the front pews along with "others" who graciously had their arms twisted. I love Christmas! It's the only time that I can even begin to tolerate a bell around my neck, but there I was, fur fluffed, red ribbon, bell and a special seat next to the altar. Someone even hung mistletoe over it! My arrival was a tad late so I could criss-cross--cross, get it?--the altar steps to get to my seat. Ever hear people chuckling while they're singing a hymn? I loved it.

Mrs. Gubbers did remember to bring her ecstacy-sized oval mound of ground fish with imperial crab and jingle bells. Mary Lou made me a special treat of chicken crunch glazed in Jack's favorite libation (you're not supposed to ask what that is). With all the treats I get, it's a wonder I'm not a hundred pounds. Will, a persnickety putz all other times, got me a really cool toy that's red and jumps all around. A laser, I think he called it. Jack presented me with a stocking that had a rubber chicken sticking out of it and a smaller one in the toe (boy, did I call that wrong). Seeing me with it in my mouth like it was a mouse was the funniest thing ever.

Well, it's all quiet now, the sky's dark and snowy. I don't know where anybody is at the moment. But, no matter. It's glittery and bright inside with shadows I can watch.

The rectory's lit up like some ancient castle with lights flickering in every corner. I think somebody gave Mary Lou a bunch of candles and she's put every single one of them around.  I'm just waiting for the creak of a drawbridge and a toothless man with a cudgel...


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fa-la-la-la-ding dong!

I'm exhausted. I finally found a quiet place to take a nap. There are just too many people going in and out for me to find any peace.

Mary Lou hung my stocking over the fireplace in the den. I've seen all of the hiding places in the rectory and, with my amazing sense of smell know what everyone's getting. Yes, the holidays are great. I wish each and every one of you the happiest!
                                Meow and kiss-kiss,

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

First Ramblings

Now, I look upon myself as no ordinary cat. I resent the implication that I or any member of my species is indifferent. That's not true. We take it all in and we're good at assessing what's important, then react or don't react accordingly. By the way, if you're wondering about my using big words, I do that only after I eat. One good burp or some wind under the willows and I talk simple as they get.

From my spot here in the rectory window, I watch as people come and go. Being a church cat, roman collars, black cloth and leather missals with gold lettering are a big part of my life. My home is with old Father Jack who, truth be known, put the "Temptation" in Temptation of Christ Parish and fresh from the seminary, Father Will who is a big pain in the apse. They are my closest friends. I have quite a few fans, but only a few friends. Then, there's the housekeeper. She worships the ground I walk on which took some getting used to, at least at the beginning. Now, she keeps my pillow clean, my stomach full and, in return, I make sure she stays out of trouble. That goes for everybody else, too, except Jack is trouble and we're always in a battle of wits. His latest attempt at witlessness was hiding catnip mice all over the place and that drove me nuts. I do get back at him in those ever-so-special ways like making the rectory conference room a special hairball depository.

So, I have a blog. Normally, I couldn't be bothered, but what happens around here is way too rich to keep within these walls. Oh, I get out, too, so you'll hear about goings-on in church, the neighborhood and in the confessional. Now, there's an experience. Me, one of the priests, and a body confessing all sorts of gory details all crammed into a room the size of a closet.

In case you haven't read the "About Me" section, I'm a Maine Coon. I have the typical polydactyl front paws (which help me perform magic tricks--okay, maybe not). All my feet are snowshoed--white, clean as my soul. I get along quite well with my humans. They say the Coons are prone to converse more than any other breed. I don't know about that, but I have every reason to open my big mouth and I do.

So, I invite you to visit every so often. I promise to have fresh words of feline wisdom served up with a side order of gossip, sure to please.

Well, let me get back to my perch. By the way, if you see Father Jack tell him there's a check under the front doormat. Something about chocolate....

Father Tom
Temptation of Christ Rectory