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No, but my cat can

Have you met my friend Lois yet? Lois, not her real name, and I go way back. (Maybe someday I’ll tell you.) She blogs at Lois Common Denominator. If I had to describe her with a few brief details (in addition to the fact that she is hysterically funny), I’d probably tell you about how on her blog she calls her children by the names she wanted to name them and about that time she made me Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies. Today’s guest post is a little something I compiled from her earlier work. It’s about her equally entertaining mother, Dot. Thanks Lois!–Dalene

This is a favorite family story. I wasn’t there when this happened, so hopefully I have all the details correct:

Late one night, my parents, Dot and Ardale, were sound asleep. A loud KNOCK, KNOCK, KNOCK came to the door. Dot and Ardale cautiously opened the door to find police officers on the porch asking if they were OK. My parents said that they were all right and asked the police what this was about. The police replied that they had received a 911 call from this address and were here to check it out. Neither Dot nor Ardale had called.

“Is there anyone else in the house?” asked the police officer.

“Just our son, J.D.” answered Ardale.

The police and my parents went up to J.D.’s room. Sure enough, they could see that the long extension cord that connects to the upstairs phone was in his bedroom, but the door was closed. Dot and Ardale were starting to panic, wondering what kind of danger their son was in. The police motioned that they had to enter the room first.

The police kicked open the door and swarmed into J.D.’s bedroom. Of course, J.D. wakes up freaked out of his mind to see himself surrounded by police. They soon realized they he was OK and hadn’t called 911.

Ardale finally asked, “Are you sure you have the right house? What phone number did the call come from?”

The police told him the number and they realized that this was the other phone line, located in Ardale’s office in a small building in the backyard. Now my parents’ minds were really racing. Did someone break into the office and get hurt? What was going on?

The police went through the backyard to the small back house. They gingerly opened the door and there they saw our cat — sitting on the speed dial button for 911 with the receiver knocked off the hook.

Many months later, a salesman telephoned to try to get Dot to purchase a security system for the house. She replied that she wasn’t interested because she has dogs to protect her home. The salesman said, “But can your dogs call 911 in case of an emergency?” Dot answered, “No, but my cat can.” And promptly hung up on the salesman.


1. She played “The Spirit of God Like a Fire is Burning” while the congregation was exiting the church because someone lit the drapes on fire during the seminary graduation.

2. One year she gave away kittens as “treats” for Halloween.

3. At the age of 75, she’s started violin lessons (and we thought she was nuts when she started banjo lessons at 40).

4. She’s a “Beet Digger” and proud of it.

5. She planted corn on the roof of the house (When Lorna asked her why she planted corn on the roof, Dot replied, “Because the cantaloupe kept rolling off”).

(If you need any more reasons, check out Lois’s October archives for “Watch It Jiggle?” and “I’m Boiling a Tongue.”)

6 thoughts on “No, but my cat can”

  1. Some cat!

    I had to read "I'm boiling a tongue" because I used to take cow heart or tongue sandwiches to school when my aunt slaughtered a cow, and I had to see what she had to say about that. We made shrinky dinks out of liver lids, too–I loved the red & white stripes–much better than buying the plastic from the craft store.

    This was great!


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