A Book Shop Tuck Shop cat

Captain the Book Shop cat

Dear Orlando,

I am a sixty-four-year-old Tuxedo cat and have always considered myself a fine example of my breeding, but I must confess I’ve let things slip on the exercise front during lockdown and gained some unwanted ounces. I’ve always been very active; I am extremely fond of night-prowling, terrorising dogs and occasionally engaging in combat with small children. I have owned and managed a successful bookshop for years, so that has also kept me fit, but the absence of human customers and the inferior canines they insist on bringing with them has made things a little quiet. 

Elderly gentleman

I’ve gotten lazy and started comfort eating. Local birds mostly, at first, then my flatmate Fango’s food (raw chicken at that, total garbage), which has created some domestic discord. More recently, I’m ashamed to say I allowed the lady next door to think I’d stopped eating and she has started leaving bowls of cream and smoked salmon out for me, which I can’t resist.

I tried the Catkin’s diet and absolutely hated it, but if I keep going, I won’t be able to jump on the shop counter to sell books. Regular customers have started commenting on my expanded waistline and I’ve also overheard the elderly gentleman who works for me pass remarks about my weight. 

Help! What can I do?

Captain,
from Wigtown

@captainthebookshopcat & @bookshopwigtown


https://autumnvoices.co.uk/online-with-orlando/
Orlando

Dear Captain,

Oh dear. You seem to have found yourself in a situation experienced by many humans during lockdown. As common as this predicament is, however, I really must encourage you not to indulge in behaviour that lowers you to their level. You’re better than that.   

Gentle rebukes aside, the fat-shaming you have experienced is unacceptable and should not be tolerated. Ban those insolent customers from your shop immediately. An established businessman like you can surely afford to part with a few sales, and I suggest you fire the elderly staff member as soon as you can. I’m sure you can establish suitable grounds for dismissal.

As to the central issue: well, it’s hard to lose weight as you get older, but not impossible. I had a social engagement to get in shape for a while back and I joined PurrGym. I found a tolerable human to show me the ropes and I now enjoy working out. You’ll find the treadmill quite easy, and you’ll love the agility ladder. The cross-trainer takes a bit of mastering though, and I’d certainly avoid the balance balls – your claws will go straight through them and that seems to make the staff angry, but you’ll find what you like eventually. 

Give that a go and let me know how you get on!

Yours Purrfully,
Orlando

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