Friday, August 01, 2008

Housecats vs. Wizards: Test Case I

You know how in certain editions of D&D a housecat could pretty easily take a wizard?

Well, we had a bit of a test of that the other night.

Jenn (housemate) seems to have acquired a cat. It has been living in her room since July 4th. I have a cat. Angela also has a cat. Angela's cat, Tempest, is odd and goofy and desperately wants to be near the other cats - who really want nothing to do with him.

Anyway, Jenn's cat (whom we shall call Kitten X) is a shy thing who mostly wants to hide in Jenn's room. Wednesday, she locked X out of her room for a bit, thinking it would be good for her. Unfortunately, Angela left the attic door unlatched. Kitten X hid in the attic. Tempest followed her up there. ...and, lo, there was a confrontation.

The cats began making horrible yowling noises that sounded almost human. My cat wandered confusedly up to the attic (which she is normally afraid of) to find out what the racket was. (I told her to go back downstairs and she did.) Tempest and X were all puffed up.

I mentioned that Tempest is odd. I should point out that he tends not to emote like most cats. For instance, he'd never hissed until he met my cat... at which point he decided that hissing was a standard greeting.

Anyway, Angela tried to separate the two cats. She did this by grabbing Tempest - which she'd never have done with any other cat who was acting like him. He bit down on her hand. Hard.

I should point out that Tempest, while not huge, is solid muscle.

Yeah. It hurt her. She's still in pain. She'll probably have a cool scar in the shape of a cat's mouth, even. She didn't, however, need to go to the ER. Given that Tempest is really a pretty strong cat, I think it would be very impressive for a housecat to be able to take out a person in a fight.

4 comments:

Infamous Jum said...

Ouch! I had a cat once, and one night I woke up to find him chewing a Halls wrapper right next to my face (I have a problem with Halls). I put my hand up to brush him away and POW he bit down on my hand so hard his fang went clear through my pinky. I, of course, went back to sleep, only to find a nasty red stain on my bed in the morning. So yeah, cats could mess you up.

Also, you told your cat to go downstair, and it listened? You, sir, are some kind of magic man.

szilard said...

Also, you told your cat to go downstair, and it listened? You, sir, are some kind of magic man.

It helps that my cat didn't really want to be up there - and knows she isn't supposed to be. I just spoke sternly to her and she ran back downstairs.

Now, if I could have separated the yowling beasts without resorting to splashing water on them... then I would have been magic.

David M Jacobs said...

Given that Tempest is really a pretty strong cat, I think it would be very impressive for a housecat to be able to take out a person in a fight.

Let me provide one of my cats, Maxi, as a counter-example.

Maxi emphatically does not like worming paste. Back in his prime, my sister and I would have to wrap him in a towel, and I would have to pin him to the floor, in order to administer the stuff.

On one occasion, however, my sister decided that my brother-in-law could perform my role just as well. Not so: I heard my brother-in-law scream, shortly followed by the front door, slamming loudly.

When they returned, I learned that Maxi had gotten loose and opened up half an inch of artery.

Thereafter, my sister took Maxi to the vet for worming. His modus operandi changed: he's taken out at least half a dozen vets with lightning claw strikes to the eyes.

Granted, a cat claw to the eye isn't likely to kill a person. On the other hand, I suppose it's a matter of how abstract you feel hit points to be: an opponent who's hors de combat is just as useless as one who's been killed in the heat of battle.

Ricky Domingo said...

My wife had a cat bite and lock on to the area between the forefinger and thumb of one hand when working for a vet in high school. The vet had to pry the cat off, and she suffered nerve damage. Over 10 years later she still doesn't have 100% use of that hand.

Good thing she wasn't a wizard- I imagine that sort of wound could seriously mess up any somatic spell requirements.