Q: Where Does a Twenty Pound Maine Coon Sleep?

A: Wherever he wants.


He takes up almost the entire damned Ottoman. And I can never get enough of those paws:


A worthy successor for Tunch, and exactly what this house needed. I have no idea what people see in meek or small or timid cats who run and hide. I want a big cat with big cat attitude and big cat love.

42 replies
  1. 1
    Glocksman says:

    It must be your inner Gryffindor.
    Is Steve part Kneazle?

  2. 2
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    I’m house sitting cats right now. I’ve never understood any of this before, but now it all makes perfect sense.

    They’re completely dependent on you and completely in charge of you, all at the same time. I think it’s because they have a vastly simplified view of the world so these two seemingly opposed concepts aren’t opposed at all, since they don’t even really deal in concepts, or roles, as we see them. They deal in hunger, wanting to be petted, fear, complete devotion to you and utter ruthlessness, all at the same time.

  3. 3
    ruemara says:

    Not sure it’s being big, since my mini-maine was lord of all space and master of love and cuddles with polydactility. I think it’s being a confident kitty. Plus being the right cat. This roomie cat is a hider, a psychobitch, doesn’t play or know chase games and worst of all, a yowler. Ugh. NOPE. Fluffy and comfy is the way to be.

  4. 4
    Quicksand says:

    I want a big cat with big cat attitude and big cat love.

    Hold on, is this a crosspost from your OK Cupid profile?

  5. 5
    jl says:

    @Quicksand: Cole did specify ‘cat’, so I assume he meant a cat.

  6. 6
    jl says:

    I am not there, so can only judge from the posts. But Steve / Mungo seems like a doglike cat, and sometimes Lily seems like a catlke dog. Which is not that unusual, but maybe unusual to have both in one house.

    Rosie seems like a #%*&**!! brat, but Rosie is a Jack Russel Terrorist, so that is normal.

    Tunch was… was.. .like a kind of serene ageless immortal, though overly heavy and lazy for an immortal (since one imagines them floating effortlessly on high), and sadly not really immortal. Unless…. well, we will see what odd and very unusual adventures befall the hapless Cole and decide what hidden hand is playing with his fate.

  7. 7
    Betty Cracker says:

    Can’t sleep, and I’m watching “Bar Rescue” — which came on after Star Wars. Good god. The main guy is a raging asshole. But the people he’s trying to help deserve him.

  8. 8
    Draylon Hogg says:

    My sister owned a cat the spit of Steve. He was called Winston. Same enormous paws, mane and pain in the arse to groom coat. He used to come when you called like a dog and would sit begging for her to screw up rizlas that he’d then bat about until they ended up somewhere his shovel sized paws couldn’t reach. Then he’d go back and demand another cig paper. He also used to shit on her bed when he was pissed off.

  9. 9
    Ruckus says:

    Landlady has 3 cats. 2 nice females, I’d say small to med sized, they like attention and come to me to get more. The there is the male. Big dude, at least twice the size of the females, scared of his own shadow. And pretty much every thing else. The females will chase other cats out of the yard, the male hides in a closet. Which by the way he can get open, sticks his paw under the door and pulls it open. Lived here nearly a year and he finally lets me get in about 3 pets before he runs away.

  10. 10
    Montarvillois says:

    Like most people, a cat’s personality is developed early in life. Cats don’t forget abuse regardless of the pampering they may receive later in life. I don’t think people prefer meek or timid animals but sometimes that’s what arrives at the doorstep. BTW, do we know the history of Steve’s life up until the time he hit the jackpot?

  11. 11
    NotMax says:

    Can’t abide Melissa for more than 5 seconds for the same reason can’t abide Ezra Klein.

    They both speak as if they were 3 years old.

    Get some vocal coaching and temper the damn lisp.

  12. 12
    WereBear says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: It’s early days yet. Once the cats know you better, they become capable of running Games on you.

  13. 13
    Rpbert says:

    My Maine Coon is 25lb. I have an over sized chair that he is barely able to stretch out in anymore. He’s starting to prefer the couch….and thereby allowing me to find another spot to recline.

  14. 14
    nancy graham says:

    My cat, Max, is a very fine cat. He is the least trouble of any pet I have ever owned. Just the occasional hair ball and a little bit of litter scattering—at least that’s all he does when I am awake.

    Scamper, the cat we had when my son was growing up once chased a pit bull down the street. I was not the only witness. Top that, Cole.

    Scamper was a people lover and used to sit in the middle of the sidewalk and demand that passers-by stop to pet him. If they did not stop, he followed them and sat down in front of them til he got his petting. Also, the neighborhood dog walkers would detour into the street when he was sitting on the sidewalk—he always stood his ground. Foolhardy, perhaps, but he lived a fairly long time and died of a tumor.

    He also walked with my son to the school bus stop every morning.

  15. 15
    Woodrowfan says:

    what happened to the dog that attacked Tunch?

  16. 16
    gogol's wife says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim:


    Small, meek, timid cats can be very loving. Don’t knock it if you haven’t tried it.

    OT — tonight is a new season of Downton! The NYTimes had its annual sneering review by Alessandra Stanley. She didn’t find it necessary to mention that it has better writing, acting, cinematography, costumes, and music than 95% of what’s on TV. At least this year she didn’t compare it to Fifty Shades of Grey — probably because people are still interested in Downton and nobody cares about Fifty Shades of Grey any more. I’m amazed she didn’t drag Miley Cyrus into it.

  17. 17
    maximiliano furtive, formerly known as dr. bloor says:

    I’m naming my next band Big Cat Love.

  18. 18
    Joy in FL says:

    Steve is wonderful.

    I had a shelter kitty who lived to be 20 years and a few months old. She was not tagged as a Maine Coon at the shelter, but I think she was mostly MC. She was polydactyl, and remained a small cat all her life, but her feet were amazingly large and beautifully furry. She was so sweet.
    My current feline crush is TIgg, a black tabby. His paws are large, which is especially obvious when he expands them as he stretches. Here is a photo of those beauties. http://mandyandtigger.tumblr.c.....-cute-paws

    Keep the animal photos coming. More Lily and Rosie photos, please.

  19. 19
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    Love Steve. And Steve and John were my inspiration to find a fluffy guy who could come try and fill the hole left by Harley. We, too, have hit the kitty jackpot and though I didn’t see it at first – all I saw was big personality and bed-head, everyone tells me he’s part Maine Coon. He does seem to have a big personality and he’s brought all my other kitties out of their shells. Everyone came out for pets when company arrived the other day. THAT never happens.

    I am convinced he was handpicked by Harley, because of the way he came to us.

  20. 20
    Jennifer says:

    Don’t knock the meek and timid kitties. Most of the cats I’ve had have been the gregarious types, friendly with everyone, not shy about getting what they want. But the kitty I have now, Eartha Kitty, just showed up one day – and ran away in terror when I opened the door to come out on the porch. I figured she was a neighbor’s cat just checking out the yard. But she came back and kept hanging around in my yard and the next door neighbor’s yard, running in terror whenever someone came outside. After about 2 weeks, I noticed she looked thinner, and figured out she was homeless. So I started putting food out on the back porch. Of course she continued to run every time I came out. Finally, one day she was laying under the bushes in the neighbor’s yard when I came out to water plants on the front porch. She made ready to run and I just ignored her and she decided she was safe. After about 6 weeks, one day she was sitting by the back porch and I came out to put out some canned food. She meowed and ran right up to me, rubbing on me and begging for petting; after she finished eating she jumped up into my lap for more petting, then decided she would come in the house. For 3 days she would not go outside, I guess afraid that she wouldn’t get back in. On day three, I policed the house to find out where she was peeing since I didn’t have a litter box set up yet; what I found was that she had gotten on the bed in the guest room where there was an empty plastic grocery bag sitting open, and she had peed in the bag without getting a drop anywhere else. Smart, good kitty! When I took her to be spayed, the vet called back an hour later and said, “we shaved her belly and your kitty has a scar.” So she had been someone’s pet and either got lost, got dumped, or ran away.

    To this day she maintains her distrust of all humans other than me. She’s gotten some better – she will sometimes even approach adult women after they’ve been in the house for a while. But kids and men she’s afraid of, kids especially. If the kid has been trained on how to approach and introduce him or herself, she’ll tolerate them petting her for a minute, but as soon as she can, she’ll slip away and hide under the bed. More than anything, I feel sorry for her because of her fearful nature. It puts a lot of stress on her she wouldn’t have otherwise. Besides people, she’s afraid of thunder, the sound of rain hitting the windows, plastic shopping bags, the sound of ice cubes being dropped in the glass, the clicking noise the stove burners make when you turn them on, the dishwasher door being opened…..lots of stuff. She is a neurotic cat.

    But such a good one! After almost 10 years, she has never once peed or pooped anywhere but the litter box or outside. She doesn’t pester me to get up in the morning to feed her or let her out – she just waits until I’m up or sometimes sleeps in well after I do. She doesn’t tear things up – she plays with her own toys. And as scared as she is of other people, if you saw her with just me, you’d think she was the most people-loving cat you’d ever seen. She talks to me a lot and comes to me several times a day for an extended kitty love session. You know how most cats will let you hold them for a minute, then they’ve had enough? Not this cat. She’ll stay there with her head on my shoulder, purring, for 5, 10, 15 minutes at a go. She is, in short, an AWESOME cat – it’s just that she saves all her awesomeness for one person rather than sharing it around.

    So yeah, the big friendly cats are great, but don’t knock the meek timid ones – they’re great too. And they also need homes and love. As hard as they are to win over, their loyalty is pretty unshakable once you’ve proven yourself. I very often think to myself how fortunate both Eartha and I are that she found me. She could not have found a home better suited to her temperament – quiet, with no other pets and no kids, and a human roommate who respects and indulges her nature. And I couldn’t have found a cat who would be more lovey and low maintenance.

  21. 21
    jayboat says:

    Now into our 8th year together- Mr Cheese has finally mellowed to a point of allowing me to hold him with no tension- coiled like a spring and ready to leap from the getgo.

    And he doesn’t freak any more when anyone walks through the yard. After so long, I was a bit surprised that it finally happened. As a rescue from the streets of Ft Myers at 5-8wks, he is still a psychotic mess. You MUST wear gloves if you intend to roll him on his back and rub his belly… it triggers a reflex that will draw blood every time.

    Will not play with normal cat toys- prefers a piece of pine straw or a slow moving beetle. Woe be unto any gecko or salamander that ventures into his realm. He chews the legs off first, then the head. I can only assume they were the protein source that kept him alive until we met.

  22. 22
    brendancalling says:


    Oh god, I have the same combo. And worse, because the confident alpha-cat dominates the yowler, said yowler needs to be re-homed.

    Anyone want a stupid and useless,but friendly, cat? She needs to be in a one cat home.

  23. 23
    brendancalling says:


    Oh god, I have the same combo. And worse, because the confident alpha-cat dominates the yowler, said yowler needs to be re-homed.

    Anyone want a stupid and useless,but friendly, cat? She needs to be in a one cat home.

  24. 24
    Citizen_X says:

    @Quicksand: Hey, if someone is into Cats cosplay, who are we to judge?

  25. 25
    Larkspur says:


    Get some vocal coaching and temper the damn lisp.

    Actually Melissa Harris-Perry has gotten a lot of control over her lisp. It was much more pronounced when she first started guesting on MSNBC. It seems like she’s worked pretty hard.

    In terms of cats: I just got word that one of my favorite cats, Junior, has passed on at the fine age of 18. He was a big goofy white ragdoll cat. He survived a car accident and a move from northern California to Austin, Texas (where he thrived). He had a good life, and I’m going to have a drink for him this evening.

  26. 26
    Ben Franklin says:

    I look forward to the Catness posts as much as I do Kevin Drum’s friday cat-blogging.

    It’s a dog.

  27. 27

    @gogol’s wife: You have to admit though, that Downton Abbey has become quite soap-like over the last 2 seasons. Its treatment WWI was quite silly too.

  28. 28
    TriassicSands says:

    I have no idea what people see in meek or small or timid cats who run and hide. I want a big cat with big cat attitude and big cat love.

    Simple. They see a meek or small critter who needs a caring home just as much as some over-sized trophy cat — who incidentally did absolutely nothing on his own (except inherit particular genes) to be big or have any other quality.

    That’s an especially clueless statement, John.

    I have three cats and they span the range of behavior. The biggest is a male, who is shy around other people, but absolutely the most loving, affectionate, and companionable critter possible to have around. Another is an aloof female, who when she decides she wants some affection — on her own terms — is a joy. And finally a small Maine Coon, with a winter mane to end all manes and a wonderful, well-rounded personality. Ask me to choose among them and I can’t. Had I not adopted or taken them in they might all be long dead, victims of an uncaring society.

    And I can’t imagine why anyone would want to have ugly, wimpy little dogs around. Oh, wait, yes I can.

  29. 29

    I climbed into bed last night and discovered rant Charlotte had decided to be an “inbetweener” so she could lay parallel to G and I and be sandwiched between us. Cats.

    Also, I expressed the other night that I was worried because Charlotte had started sitting in my lap (something she usually only does when she’s feeling sick), but now I’m starting to suspect that it’s all an elaborate plan on Charlotte’s part to prove to our shy, suspicious cat Annie that sitting in human laps is safe. At first Annie was sitting a few feet away watching the process. Yesterday, she was sitting at my feet (but ran away when she saw that I saw her).

    I second the notion to not dismiss shy cats too quickly — once you do win their affection and trust, they’re wonderful.

  30. 30
    sherparick says:

    I do have start posting pictures of Lord Gizmo Topper (Gizmo was the name we inherited from his former owners, Topper because my wife is a big fan that fabulous Cary Grant – Constance Bennett – Roland Young – Billie Burke comedy. And “Lord” because Gizmo is “He Who Must Be Obeyed.” He is a 15 pound Maine Coon – European Tabby mixed, who is mostly Maine Coon in personality. Comes when called, loves to be petted and groomed, and expects his meals ontime. He is admired by one of our other cats and kind of in a love-hate relationship with a third.

  31. 31
    Culture of Truth says:

    @Jennifer: That’s pretty much what Tiger is like. He’s little and was feral, and he’s still neuorotic and scared of noises and any sound coming from the computer. Also people. But he can sit on your lap until your legs have lost all feeling. He’s become people oriented, as long as it’s the one person he’s not terrified of.

  32. 32
    sherparick says:

    First, I would note that approximately 30% of minimum wage workers, or low wage workers who would likely receive pay increases if the minimum wage is increased are either college graduates or have some college. Many of these are skilled workers whose jobs were lost either due to the Lesser Depression (such as my brother who was an urban planner, who was “downsized” when the town where he worked eliminated his position and then could not find a job as planning departments downsized across the country in the wake of the housing bubble bursting and the lowest residential investment rate since the Great Depression). Other back office jobs were shipped overseas since the internet allows and low cost telecommunictions (a very good thing) allowed corporations to shift those functions to India, Bangladash, etc, those “skilled” workers “became unskilled.” It is asking a lot of 40 and 50 (and soon 60 and 70 year old people since that is how far you Conservatives want to extend the working age for those who don’t make themselves very rich) to start out as if they were 18 or 22 again and master a completely new skill set. Further, a lot of skilled carpenters, electricians, metal workers, have been left unemployed by the residential, commercial, and Government constructions slump over the last 4 years. These “unskilled workers” become skilled again as we see this sector of the economy revives.

    Finally, especially in a the current situation where a few large companies dominate retail and fast food labor markets, you have not shown that collectively that they don’t benefit from a monopsony in the labor market. When thousands line up for jobs at new Walmart or McDonalds, it is not hard to understand who has the power in that relationship.

    “If there are no competitors to the monopsony, then the opportunities for employment for people living in the area are extremely limited. The end result is that the sole buyer can offer the lowest wages allowed by any government regulations, stay within the limits of the law, and maximize its profits. Unfortunately, this also often means that employees of the sole buyer live at poverty level, and are unable to gather the resources necessary to escape their current circumstances with the use of higher education or vocational training that would allow them to seek employment elsewhere.”

    If the economy picks

  33. 33
    kindness says:

    20 pounds?!? Really? He hides it well.

  34. 34
    Draylon Hogg says:

    All you cat lovers should, if you haven’t seen it already, check out the BBC documentary The Secret Life of Cats. They fitted loads of kitties in a village with GPS collars and tracked them. They found that where cats live in close proximity they will operate a shift system so they’re not out at the same time encroaching on each other’s territory and some cats patrolled in a circle whilst others went backwards and forwards in a straight line plus lots of other cat-tastic stuff.

  35. 35
    gogol's wife says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    It’s a soap opera.

  36. 36
    Keith G says:

    I have no idea what people see in meek or small or timid cats who run and hide. I want a big cat with big cat attitude and big cat love.

    Fewer insecurities to cover up with a big, trophy cat?

    While I have certainly enjoyed the large, floofy males I have raised, I have become really attached to the smaller, ultra intelligent females have come into my life. Izzie is one of my current housemates and while she was the runt of the litter, now she is the head of the household.

    Seriously, she has an agenda which she tries to get me to fit into and if I don’t, I hear about it. And, she is a strategic thinker. If she could see in color, she’d breat my ass in chess. Her sister, Meredith, has more of the stereotypical cat behaviors. She can be a bit more aloof and is often what some would call timid. But in the evening when it’s time to settle down and enjoy a movie, she’s always there there demanding that her tummy gets scritched. She’s quite a lover though a lot less demanding than her sister.

  37. 37
    wasabi gasp says:


    Pessimistic perpetrators perpetuating gotta perpetually perpetrate pessimism.


  38. 38
    C.V. Danes says:

    I have a 14 pound Maine Coon, so I can definetly say option 1, where ever she wants :-)

  39. 39
    JustRuss says:

    Who says a cat has to be big to have a big attitude? We had a 6-pound tuxedo who ran the house, even when it was overrun with nephews and nieces. Sadly, she met an end similar to Tunch’s, but her reign of 18 years will not be forgotten.

  40. 40
    Churchlady320 says:

    @Jennifer: My Maine Coon cat showed up on my porch. Under a year old, he was terrified. I think he’d been tossed out of his home because he wasn’t in bad shape. He WAS hungry – but he would not let me touch him for a couple of weeks. Then when I did, he drooled – still does. He’s a sucker for combing, petting, scratches under the chin all accompanies by wet. I finally caught him and got him neutered, then when I brought him home, I discovered he was NOT box trained well. Too about three months and special litter to have him figure it out. Since then he’s been fine. He still can be skittish about noises (he sneezes in MY face, but he can’t tolerate my sneezes at all) and hates plastic bags, but other than that he’s amazing. I am so glad he found me even if my main utility is opening his cans of food and scratches every night. He’s the sweetest cat I ever had, and I love him dearly, huge feet and all.

  41. 41
    Churchlady320 says:

    @Draylon Hogg: I saw that. How cool are they to have figured that out?

  42. 42
    Churchlady320 says:

    @sherparick: Only alternative – and I mean the ONLY one – is employee ownership. There are 11,000 plus employee owned companies ranging from simple ESOPs to union cooperatives, and they remain the most profitable companies in the U.S. MOST of all, they are stable, have far fewer layoffs (coops mostly do NOT lay off people) and provide far higher incomes since employees ARE the ones who share profits. Without a class of non-contributing stockholders, cooperatives or wholly owned ESOPs do not have to generate phony levels of profit but can operate at much lower levels of surplus and survive downturns much better. They make decisions to hold steady, even take cuts because it is THEIR decision looking out for the long term stability of their jobs, the firm, the community. They can be impacted by market downturns, of course, but they can employ strategies to weather that rather than have outsiders close them for the quick write down and government money capitalist firms will default to. This initiative does not limit itself to artisanal bakeries but can be productive in many or all industries.

    We are long past the time where the “New New Deal” is the answer since the first “New Deal” has been eviscerated. The only place working men and women can be secure is in their ownership of the businesses for which they create the wealth. Employee ownership MUST be the major strategy for the future. It is the only way to rebuild the stability and self sufficiency we deserve.

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