Reading is Dangerous

Or the sad tale of Sheba the Pundit.

I think we all know that reading is a dangerous pastime. It can expand your mind and expose you to ideas that you never would have thought of by yourself. It can make you sympathetic to animals (and people) for whom you would otherwise not have the least bit of sympathy.  It can teach you things that cause you to behave differently from those around you, to question the local ways, to think for yourself. All very, very dangerous things. Who was it who said that the pen is mightier than the sword?

But I never thought my book would be dangerous! Yes, it does teach you about capybaras. And (if you are not a cat yourself), it gives you insight into the way cats view the world. But these are not earth-shattering things. Just topics for idle conversation at the next #pawpawty, you know, “Don’t you think @Pandafur is so like Celeste in the book?”

Sadly,  Celeste and the Giant Hamster seems to be just as dangerous as any other book. I’m just recounting this story as a warning to the rest of you.

You may remember this adorable photo of my good friend Sheba the Pundit reading Celeste on a windowsill.

Sheba the Pundit reading Celeste and the Giant Hamster

Sheba the Pundit reading Celeste and the Giant Hamster

This is an excellent reading location because of the wonderful light. But Sheba, being the cat she is, thought she could go one better with this perch.

Sheba the Pundit falls asleep while reading Celeste

Sheba the Pundit falls asleep while reading Celeste

This is fine when a cat is awake and alert but, sorry to say, Sheba does not have a great attention span (she is a cat after all) and she fell asleep. (Do not take this to mean my book is boring! Far from it. It’s just how cats are.)

Can you see how far down it is? Believe it or don’t, Sheba fell! She used up a couple of her nine lives. I believe she is down to five now but most cats use up their extra lives when they are young like Sheba, so it’s not something to be especially worried about.

At any rate, she hurt her back leg pretty seriously and required a vet visit, bandages and confinement (I think this makes her more like Ruby than like Celeste). Here’s a photo of her in her sick bed.


Sheba the Pundit on her sick bed

Her owner, Michelle Holman, says she is doing well. She is hand fed every 2-3 hours, which I’m sure she loves. She is on a human pain killer, which she probably also loves. It will take her a few weeks to recover and until then she will have to be confined, which she will not love.

You can leave a note for Sheba and her owner as a comment to this blog. I’m sure she’d like to hear about other injuries suffered while reading.

8 comments to Reading is Dangerous

  • Oh no! This is terrible! I hope Sheba is not in a lot of pain & her leg heals quickly. Get better, Sheba!

  • Cynthia

    Oh my goodness! Something similar happened to my Schmoo kitty when he was 7 months old. He was curious about some biscuits cooling on the kitchen counter & hopped up there, then got his foot caught in the cooling rack & jumped down on the floor with his foot stuck in it, & he broke his leg, requiring a surgery with 2 screws to reattach the bones. We had to keep him on strict bedrest, so we kept him sedated and confined in a large plastic (airline-type) dog crate – big enough to fit a litter box, food & water, and bedding. We also got those bird water & food bowls that can be attached to the inside of the cage, so he couldn’t make a mess. It was tough, but he got through it, and he’s now 7 years old & still getting into sticky situations! Hope Sheba gets well soon!

  • Sheldon

    Oh poor Sheba. I hope she gets better soon. I have long spoken out against the ills of reading. I usually leave it to Hollywood to let me know if a book is good and to perform a dramatic enactment. They are professional readers. I have not received any physical injuries from reading but I do suffer occasionally from headaches. Let this be a lesson to you Sheba – stick to watching tv. We’re thinking of you!

  • Wow, pore Sheba! We will purr she heels up reely reely fast.

  • I am sure that Caplin and family although they wanted Celeste and the Giant Hamster to make a big impact, they didn’t mean quite so literally!

  • Michelle

    Sheba is doing very well and wants to thank everyone for the feeling the feline love!

    Being that she is a Pundit – annoying, loud and full of nonsense . . . she decided she was a member of the Whig party. This political party was decided after her Morphine dose – – I asked her, when she was a little more lucid, if this was the party agreed upon and she said she thought about it and dreamt about it as well.

    So we now have an injured Pundit of the Whig party.

    She lays on the bed (supervised) to watch the pundits on MSNBC, CNN and the other channels . ..after one or two shows she is moved to her cage for her feeding (can food and chicken) and her nap.

    Thanks All – – M M E E O O W W to the Whigs!!

  • dogafin

    poor sheba. get well soon lil girl! we all love you!

  • neva

    I know this is a little late, but… fast recovery, Sheba! I always had you pegged for a Whig.

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