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Dorian the Food Ninja

Dorian, our cat with the telescopic neck and an uncanny ability to manifest over our shoulders when fish is on the plate, has recently developed an untenable habit of zipping in when Sif pauses mid-meal, and running off with as much of her meal as he can stuff in his cheek pouches. His other mutant ability, as it turns out, is food inhalation. You may laugh, but I have heard him eat raw steak with sounds of, "Schluuuuuurp! Schluuuuuuurp!" I do not know how you eat steak by inhaling it.

Sif, meanwhile, is tragically defenseless against Dorian's food ninja speed and surprising telescopic qualities. You think you've scooped him off the floor in time. No! In that split second it takes to cuddle him to your chest, he has hoovered up a quarter can of tuna mix off the tiles and will be chomping it down as quickly as possible in mid-air. Mid. Air. We have tried serving him his food separately outside (the most effective means), holding him while Sif eats (results in a lot of grumbling) and watching him while she eats (thoroughly ineffective -- he's too fast). Even with four small meals a day, I worry one or the other cat is not receiving enough food.

Sometimes I wonder if we were the right family for Dorian. He's so full of energy and curiosity. We like to sit in front of screens and read things. My lazy parenting is thankful that we recently received a Booda Ball (I believe this is somehow related to the igloo-shaped litter box manufacturers), essentially a ball with a snuff compartment on one side and a space for treats in the other. Filling the Booda Ball with treats and having him roll it round gives us respite. He is a good little ball kicker. Sif stops at being confused by the whole treat ball principle. She may have understood treats are in the ball, but lacking any will to hunt down the treats, is more apt to accidentally run into one of the treats Dorian has kicked out. I actually think she finds taking out treats and not feeding them directly to her is some form of punishment. Well, now she's asleep from watching him kick around a ball. (Spouse: "Supervision is exhausting.")

Inspired by mokie, I decided to give Coffee & Tea Exchange's Sassafras Delight Black tea a go. Now, Mokes did a rather informative review of this tea way back (I kind of used her as my test hamster, however well-meaningfully). I had forgotten she said the smell of sassafras in this was strong. I bought a ¼ lbs. bag of sassafras tea, and 1 lbs. bags of normal black tea, including the hearthfired bottom-of-a-wok smoky Russian Caravan. The box smelled like sassafras from the moment I opened it to the time the rest of my kitchen smelled like root beer before bed.

Smelling of root beer is great. I spent all afternoon running back and forth between the study (whose litter box smelled like death and taxes) and snuffing the sassafras. I'd forgotten I loved the smell of root beer. It's wonderful.

Mokes also warned about the tea being cinnamony and a little spicy. I was looking forward to it. (I like my chai heavier towards the cardamom and black peppers.) Topped my standard 2-teaspoon measure with hot water and half and half. No sugar. I was hoping I'd get the flavour of root beer float once the vanilla ice cream had melted in. It doesn't taste quite like that. But it does taste like root beer. There was no bite, just a pleasant nip of cinnamon in the back of the tongue. The milk and cream really rounded out that floaty sassafras flavour. Without sugar, it actually had a hint of natural sweetness, which is tempered by the natural bitterness of black tea. On a scale of 5, I would give the caffeine in this a 2, after a regular 2 minute steep. I might try it steeped a bit longer next time, to see if makes everything else more robust.

Is it a good bedtime tea? Well, I'll see if I'm still up at four.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 11th, 2013 07:37 am (UTC)
For some reason, the ice cream/root beer float connection never occurred to me--I don't think I've ever tried it with any milky/creamy addition. No wonder I was getting so much cinnamon kick-back on it...

Also, you should've said--I'd have shared out some of mine for tasting purposes. :)
Jun. 11th, 2013 05:40 pm (UTC)
Well, you have a background of drinking sassafras tea as an actual tea, and I only ever had a background of root beer. So when faced with root beer tea, I think my reaction was, "Oh, it's like flat root beer."

It is okay about the tasting. I like my ¼ bag, and will be drinking more of it. :) It's the first tea I've ever seriously considered pouring on ice cream. Or having ice cream put in. Actually, if I brew this into a syrup and insert fizzy water...

You do want to seriously try it with milk, at least once. It will probably cut down on the spice. In my case, I'm actually considering adding some ground black pepper into the tea, to see what happens.
Jun. 11th, 2013 08:39 pm (UTC)
I'll give the milk a shot. Also, the red hot fizz is an awesome idea. I've been waiting to try it as a summer-style iced tea, for that icy-hot contrast.
Jun. 11th, 2013 07:51 am (UTC)
Having seen Dorian blossom from a nervous king of the undercouch to a confident, inquisitive cat, I'd say you guys are indeed the family for him.
Jun. 11th, 2013 05:35 pm (UTC)
Aww. Thank you! He loves us well enough, though as the spouse says, he has recently acquired "bratty" behaviours. I think this just means he is appropriately spoiled.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )