On Change

For anybody reading this who has no idea what a Social Justice Warrior (SJW) is, here’s a quick description and background. It’s basically any individual who serves in one of the western progressive social movements to ‘make the world a better place’. Not sure why I’m quoting that.

They fight against racism, sexism and all other kinds of discrimination in search for ultimate equality and fairness.

But they’re not very popular.

to most, it’s quite obvious that they’re not unpopular due to their ideas – it’s obvious that racism and other bigotry is still out there, thriving, but they are somewhat outcast people or otherwise minor issues that can and will be dealt with in time through the normal practices.

No, they’re unpopular because they take their ideas, forcefully push them onto society with angry, disrespectful, hypocritical methodology which only serves to make their ‘opponents’, as they now are, defensive, angry and spiteful. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to Hate. Hate leads to trolls and generations of battles between the two opponents.

Now, according to the internet, Most females believe in essentially the same goals as modern SJWs, but only a third of them want to associate with the term ‘feminist’. Feminism has been poisoned by the loud mouthed, angry, anti-men extremist minority of SJW-ism, and as such, many have suggested labelling oneself as ‘egalitarian’ or other related terms that essentially fight for the equal right of humans and sentient beings across the board.

———————-

Ok so that’s that. Almost all of us want equal rights and equal pay in the right context in the right circumstances right? People disagree when SJWs complain about female football players earning less than men, and rightly so. This is a classic example of finding Jesus in toast. finding sexism where there is none.

It’s pretty clear that women get paid less because female football is far, far less lucrative a sport as men’s football. Billions around the world watch men play football, and their paychecks reflect that, not the idea that men are better than women.

Now I acknowledge that it’s a little unfair that women playing sports is generally less popular than men, but again, I don’t see that as either sexism nor subtle, subconscious sexism. I see it as a reflection of past sexism, where men were the only ones allowed to compete in sports for many generations. Once fully established, women then finally won their rights, but it’s kind of hard to compete at that point. It’s like A new company claiming to be the new coca-cola, or a new animal being heralded as a cat replacement. It just doesn’t really work as well as you’d hoped.

I want to argue that most forms of sexism that SJWs push are not sexism at all, but simply our ape-like brains’ inability to comfortably accept change.

One feminist argued that on the popular YouTube channel, SciShow, they hired a female host and she was disliked across the board. This was obvious sexism since the men didn’t get such dislikes.

On the surface it might seem to be the case anyway, in the same way that on the surface, it looked like the moons of jupiter were dangling off the planet by a series of springs, bouncing around like the coiled metal wouldn’t let them go. Well, it turned out that there was actually something called gravity holding on to the moons, once we had a closer inspection.

Likewise, the female is so disliked simply because she isn’t very good at what she does, she has distracting characteristics and so forth. My evidence? Well, on their partner YouTube channel, SciShow Space, another woman serves as a host. She is enthusiastic, smiley, and overall keeps you interested. Nobody dislikes her videos.

When she came onto the main SciShow channel filling in for the boss, Hank Green, there were no dislikes on that video, either. I wonder…

Maybe people don’t actually have a problem with women on the channel. Maybe they dislike that the new host has low energy, her glasses are huge and reflect so much light you can’t actually see her eyes, her nose piercing (something I see in the comments. My internet is too slow to usually have good enough quality footage to even notice that, and wouldn’t bother me anyway), her scraggly clothing style. Perhaps they don’t like her slurring, dry voice.

I don’t like her as a host for some of these reasons. I DO like her in the game show she partook in, in which she was able to show off her knowledge and intelligence and overall introverted personality, something I relate to very closely. But as a host? No. In the same way, I would suck at a host and I’m very aware of that. That’s fine with me.

But more generally, there is more to this cacophony of misconceptions on sexism than that. It’s not just about feminists identifying sexism wherever they walk. It’s also our discomfort with women coming into focus in places we aren’t used to.

Another reason she was and is likely disliked is because she’s new. Her first few videos have more dislikes than likes. Over time, that disappeared and now they seem to get a range between 3-8% dislikes. Perhaps depending on what she’s wearing.

A lot of those may be people who aren’t used to her fashion sense, and cannot adjust to it, but the idea of a new host? Those haters disappeared after expressing their disapproval.

Likewise, when women earned the right to vote, when blacks earned… rights, when any progressive movement or indeed other significant change in society occurs, we get a huge backlash. There is ALWAYS going to be a group of people who disagree with whatever is going on, and they are always going to express that disagreement vehemently in the first few days/months/years, depending on the gravity of the movement in question.

This to me is a massive shame and a biological flaw on an otherwise… well, very flawed species we call homo sapiens. This SJW-related problem is not an SJW problem at all. It’s a global issue. Our inability to accept change is what leads to abusive fathers when their son’s grow up and surpass them at a younger age. It’s what leads to the suicide of homosexuals when their parents and friend’s can’t accept them for who they are.

It’s the reason why the Citizens of China idly float through their lives while their oppressive leader controls and watches everything they do like some kind of dystopian epic. It’s why Climate Change has gotten to this irredeemable point while everybody continues to burn coal, import goods, waste resources like it was the last day on earth. You can get more and more extreme and it still wouldn’t be hyperbole, because I really do feel like it is the cause of all modern day societies’ problems.

But is there a solution? I dunno, I’m just writing whatever crap comes out of my head. Go ask Bill Nye. All I know is, we all want change. That’s how Obama won the White House, by promising change. But the reality is, no one individual is willing to actually commit to it, and no individual is ready to accept it when it doesn’t fit smoothly into their world views.

Sexism isn’t everywhere, changeism is.

Mysterious ways

The recent death of my local street cat, Meow, has made me think a lot about things I already tend to think about, but slightly more.

In particular, the lack of a God, and even more particular, the lack of a god worshiped by humans thus far. I know this is about to be a long winded approach to a very simple concept but hell, get used to it.

I mean, from the get go it’s pretty obvious that humans have just been worshiping themselves in disguise this entire time, but what’s to say there isn’t some god we have been too innately selfish to recognize; an asshole god?

Who are we to decide what God is like? Why should a god be all loving and forgiving (lol)?

Meow, as an example, was a lovely, loving, social, friendly fun cat. She was raped by a big mean cat. 2 months later she went through what is probably the worst type of death since the movie Se7en. I’d challenge anyone reading this to imagine giving birth, only to release one dead, and have perhaps 6 more inside, dead or dying.

Then imagine the situation being stuck like that for another week while you constantly try to push and fail from pure exhaustion and pain, to the point that you’re unable to move, react or eat. Finally, on the last day, without any understanding as to what’s going on, your body has already stiffened from death, but you’re still barely alive, twitching and shaking in agony until the second you die, babies still within.

Now I want you to apply that kind of pain to literally millions and millions of people. Nice, innocent people.

I say people  because I understand that people don’t relate to the plight of animals in the same way myself and others do, but the outcoming question is the same; why?

I know the answer, unfortunately. There is no why, there is no because. One could (and One’s do) argue the rhetoric ‘God works in mysterious ways’ (You can tell I’ve watched Se7en recently) which is another way of saying ‘I can’t explain it but I’m smart enough to be able to say something un-falsifiable in return’.

With that in mind, if I was forced somehow by fear or another person to believe in a God of my choosing, I would choose a vengeful, wrathful psychotic god who was really quite unstable. If I was to apply human values in the same way all the current gods are, I’d say he was pretty depressed that his girlfriend goddess dumped him for the long-haired, sporty PHD god down the road, and he needed to take it out on someone.

We all know that humans are awful and evil. But we also all know that humans are wonderful and kind. I understand from the Great Bastard that filtering out who is good and who is bad can be tricky, given that each individual may be both evil and wonderful, and there are many gray areas in which a person cannot be defined as either, but you’d think it would be in the nature of a supreme being to figure out a working system to fully justify in an equal and fair matter.

Not the Great Bastard. His mind is clearly to focused on how best to stalk his ex to research the most effective tactics to win her back. He clearly took a quick look at the world, got confused and frustrated and just sprinkled an arbitrary and random array of pain, suffering and joy across the globe and is probably on his way back to see what happened. Of course, in the cosmic time period that could be millions of years from now, so I’d sit back and accept the plight of life as it is, embrace your emotions and otherwise do whatever the hell you want.

I still miss you, Meow.

Goodbye, Meow

The street cat that lives outside my apartment is on its last legs after a failed pregnancy. I think most the babies are still inside (one of which came out and died after a struggle) and she just gave up, exhausted. It’s been days now of lying around, barely raising her head to acknowledge anything or anyone, unfinished food. Now she doesn’t open her eyes and her body is stiff. Breathing, shaking/twitching, but not much else.

I guess if I was somebody like my loving vegan friend, Faye​, I would be immediately taking it to the vet to spend everything I have in the bank on a low chance of survival, but unfortunately I doubt I even have enough for such a probably surgery, and even if I did, I don’t trust the Chinese animal doctors in the slightest. Additionally, the cat has been fed and looked after by an elderly man who seems to have nothing else to put his attention to, so it would be unfair of me to take to a vet for it to die away from him. He did, afterall, build it a wooden home and gave some of his old clothing as bedding.

I’m happy he did what he did because he was the only counter argument against my neighbour, who has a cat permanently chained to the wall in their kitchen, where it spends its entire life desperately meowling as loud as its throat will allow it without breaking (Although sometimes it does break, you can hear it). There it will live, year after year, night after night, sitting in its box. I find it difficult to stop myself generalising about all Chinese as uncaring beasts when it comes to animals.

Another was near my friend’s previous home, in which a magpie was hanging in a tiny cage outside a door. A common sight for ‘good luck’ or whatever bullshit. In the cage, the magpie was unable to do anything but stand in the same spot. I doubt it could so much as turn around. It was smart. Without breaking the law I would point at the required hinge to unleash the door and escape, and it would acknowledge, move away from its previous unrelenting attempts to get out, and attempt my suggestion. However, I doubt it could even fly.

Well, I’ve said my goodbyes to Meow (placeholder name), and I’m very sad with little expectation she’ll survive, but there’s always that lingering hope that she will recover in some way.
I was kind of hoping that the dozens and dozens of pets that have died in my life would have made me a bit numb but I guess the last death, Dizzi, was quite some years ago now and my brain has since weakened again.

Time to get myself 25 cats to build up an immunity. Goodbye, Meow (placeholder name)

 

Edit: I got home from a day out to find she has, finally, ended her pain and passed away. I hold no shame in the tears I have trouble holding back but it doesn’t make much sense. I guess it was the release of a bunch of pent up emotions or something.

I left a message in English and Chinese, saying goodbye and how I’ll miss seeing her every day on my way to work.

I lost my sense of taste and smell

As far as I’m aware it’s just temporary, either as a result of the cold given to me so kindly by a business student of mine, or the medicine I’m using to counter it. It could be totally unrelated and I just have a tumour up there or something but I’m not one to self-diagnose like that.

But it is the weirdest feeling I’ve ever had. The weirdest thing about it is that I don’t really ‘feel’ anything.

Usually when you have some kind of disorder, disease or injury, you have something to show for it, be it howls of agony or handwritten letters to satan, begging him to take you away to a better land of eternal but otherwise tolerable torture.

With this, there is nothing. I have a slightly stuffy nose while on the medicine, and dry lips. They are the lingering remnants of a cold, but a loss of two senses seems unrelated, an illness in and of itself.

But with no pain, no discomfort, where am I going with this writing? Well, I dunno. Has anyone else experienced it?

At first, for the first day or so I was thinking if it never returned, it would be a minor loss in life. Hearing or eyesight would be devastating. A limb, years of psychological recovery. No smell or taste just seems less than a minor inconvenience, and in some ways, an advantage (Especially when living in China).

But on the second day, I started to feel I was missing out in some ways. I don’t know about you, but I use smell when I shower to check if I’m sufficiently clean, something I guess is instinct, given that I never thought about it until now. Without smell, I felt lost as to when I was actually clean.

With my clothes hanging out to dry, I took a sniff to make sure they had dried quickly enough and were fresh, but again, no result.

I spent an hour working on the greatest Indian Madras of all time, and my taste wouldn’t allow me to enjoy it. All I got was a vague concept of spice, but no actual flavour of spice. just the desire to hiccup, which has been an ongoing side effect of eating anything spicy since I was about 20.

The same again when I made a tomato & carrot soup, something I made once before and know for a fact is fricking amazing. Today? Nothing.

As the day went by I realised that I CAN taste. A little, little bit. A little bitter. Great. Of all the taste families in the world, my abilities chose the worst one.

I started getting this constantly bitter taste in my mouth. Not because it was a new onset of taste, but simply because I was more aware of it after thinking about it. Cleaning my teeth didn’t help. In act, the minty toothpaste apparently has a little overtone of bitterness, since that was all that I registered.

So now I have a mouthful of bitterness, 24 hours a day, making me feel like I’ve been out boozing and vomiting all week.

My room is full of a kind of fragrant rose scent from a bottle of… room perfume? I like, and I also tried to light some Incense my friend brought back from Thailand which is always nice. Nothing. I can’t go to restaurants with friends because I’d be spending money basically on texture and bitterness. I can’t make fruit smoothies because I’ll get no joy out of it. I can’t cook because I can’t judge the balance by smell.

I ended up, despite my current run of health, on a MacDonald delivery, simply because I was still a bit sick, without food and unwilling to go outside. It’s not like I could taste it anyway.

Seriously, this is so weird.

Physiological stuff people don’t know about me

Nobody’s perfect, eh?

I pee with my left hand

I play pool left handed

I play guitar right handed

I alternate knives and forks left-right handed

I am almost perpetually suffering from an allergy to… dust/mites/dust mites/pollen/something along those lines

I have some benign issues with my heart, including Sinus Tachycardia and Heart Murmurs

I have such an awful memory that I have close to zero memory of most of my entire life

I have permanent tinnitus, probably due to an entire teenage life of full-volume headphones and heavy metal festivals. It’s not extreme, but in a quiet room, I’m stuck listening to a triad or so of high pitch tones, and can generally just about hear them if I choose to pay attention in general life environments.

I used to be the best swimmer in my school

I had surgery for an ingrown toenail on left big toe, and immediately hiked the Annapurna mountain trek for several weeks, limping in pain the whole way. I suffered pain from post-surgery on the toe for well over a year and has only just stopped, replaced by the right big toe becoming ingrown.

My left eye has astigmatism, and both eyes are getting worse at a rate that is quicker than should be normal, but I plan on getting laser surgery when I’m like, I dunno, 40.

Both eyes have more floaters in them than anyone else I know about or have heard of.

My eyes are green, but my left eye is also brown.

My toes are a little bent, some folding under the others – not in a particularly drastic way though.

My fingers are feeble, often crushed together under the weight of a regular handshake

My skin is very sensitive to temperature, seemingly getting scolded with water others might find a bit warm.

My legs, as I’ve just recently noticed, are slightly bowed. Good job parents for fixing that!

I get acne on the top of my head, even to this day.

I’m currently over 10kgs heavier than my previous heaviest weight and it’s going up and up and up

I still, at 27 years of age, cannot grow a beard past a few mm’s in length.

That’s about all I can think of.

Chinese New Year 2015 – A summary

As y’all may know, I had three friends from England visit myself and another home country friend here in Shanghai. I have been friends with these guys from as far back as primary school, which, thinking about it, could be as long as 20 years.

Needless to say, they could stay at our respective apartments for free, on the promise of British cheese, gravy and Ribena. They did not disappoint.

Now, I don’t remember every detail of every event of every day for 2 weeks, and I highly doubt anyone would be willing to read much further than this very sentence, so I have written a summary (by the time you read this anyway). You can find more in-depth posts here (our 2 day trip to Wuhu) and here (the surprise appearance of three newborn kittens)

So, here are some highlights in no particular order.

Arrival

Nothing actually happened out of order, nobody got arrested or strip searched, nobody lost anything. Shocking stuff, honestly. James (home town friend) and I got up nice and early to meet the guys at the airport, when it turned out while ordering our McMuffins that the plane was due early, and we were due late. Stupid Virgin Airlines.

We arrived, waited around quite a while, they turned up.

Drinking

There were many nights of food exploration, which they very much enjoyed, but there was one particular night which involved some heavy drinking. Things got chaotic pretty fast.
With two of the three repeatedly losing themselves, it was the job of James and myself to make sure they didn’t end up under the wheels of cars or behind bars. Remember, these guys had only just arrived and had no way of communicating with us and by extension, anyone else in the world. We were left with just the one who could actually handle his drinks. I don’t think we could have managed all three going haywire.
The first to go was simply a sleeper and a vomiter, with a tendency for apathetic roaming. The second was persuaded to chug half a bottle of China’s infamous Baijou; a mistake of the same gravity as accidental genocide. Needless to say, he became a vomiting machine and sentient zombie.

In a relatively nice but unfortunately full bar, I would repeatedly find him sitting with strangers, bobbing back and forth in his own world, trying not to headbutt the nearest pink elephant. Those he intruded took it in good faith and I was able to snatch him back trouble free. He somehow managed to make his way to the bathroom, but couldn’t for the life of him return fully dressed.

While James was outside trying to find the first drunk, the second one turned out to have left his shoes under/in the urinal, and upon collecting them, was unable to put them on or tie them up. That was my job. Very wet, they were. I can only hope the liquid was booze.

By the end of the night I had to take the two of them home to my place given that I was due for an early night anyway, and the others had their way with the rest of the night.

The next day’s evidence of the night came in the form of mysterious scratches to wrists and cuts on the head. A coat and beanie was lost. The first of many losses.

Drinking to a view

We thought it would be nice if we could go to the top of the world financial center of Shanghai, aka the bottle opener building. Unfortunately this was pretty damn pricey and we found that it would actually be cheaper to go just a few floors lower to a posh bar and buy a couple of beers, getting the view for free.

The one on the left

The one on the left

Instead, we decided to splash out on a single cocktail each, setting us back about 110RMB/ £11/$17 each. They weren’t all great but a couple came out pretty nice. The atmosphere was mostly nice if not for some European guy working there who made us feel inferior to him and all dining there. One made the mistake of ordering water, setting them back a further 70RMB/ £7/Whatver dollars.

Certainly the most vibrant cocktail I've seen.

Certainly the most vibrant cocktail I’ve seen.

The view was nice, though.

Above the smog, things look nicer.

Above the smog, things look nicer.

To make up for it, we went for some local noodles and rice, which combined cost about as much as a single cocktail.

Chinese New Year

For official celebration, we went to a friend’s house for a dinner party, which, in terms of food, was absolutely fantastic. I had no idea I knew somebody who could create such wonder. I am a better person for it now.

The party itself was cool although a loner introvert such as myself found it excruciatingly loud as the evening went on, so it was with some relief that we headed toward another friends apartment to set off our ridiculously expensive fireworks.

Despite the level of drunk of those prepping the fireworks, it was an overall success, although we may have given a family a few floors down a few heart attacks, and one friend may have lost all hearing. He never used it anyway.

The only photo I took of the night.

The only photo I took of the night.

Qibao

Within Shanghai, there is an ancient city called Qibao, meaning Seven Treasures. Nobody knows the official history behind the name but the folk tale behind it is pretty interesting, involving seven treasures:

…these were an iron Buddha made in Ming Dynasty, a bronze bell also dating from the Ming Dynasty but said to have mysteriously appeared from nowhere, a Gold Script Lotus Sutra written by an imperial concubine of the 10th century, a one-thousand-year-old Chinese catalpa tree, a jade axe, a gold cockerel and a pair of jade chopsticks. Actually of these seven treasures, the existence of only first four can be verified while only the Scripture and the bell have survived to this day.

I don’t take many pictures nowadays since I lack a proper camera, but you can find some good photos on this other blog I arbitrarily searched for. The proper historical insight you can also find yourself, or better yet, go there. I’m not a tour guide.

Anyway, It was phenomenally crowded with Chinese tourists given the time of year, mostly I imagine from the countryside. I was told everything would be empty in Shanghai because everyone would be returning to their home towns for the New Year, but it turns out they are just replaced by country folk coming to Shanghai for a holiday instead.

Kind reminds me of my visit to the Great Wall of China

Kinda reminds me of my visit to the Great Wall of China

Long story short, however, with a boat ride, a series of 8 miniature museums, tea setting one of us back 120RMB and lovely architecture, this was one of the highlights of the trip.

To top it off, we took it a step further and visited a nearby golden temple we saw in the distance. It was almost closing time so we rushed it but this also meant it was practically empty.

Empty. China is an Atheist nation, after all. Whether they like it or not.

Empty. China is an Atheist nation, after all. Whether they like it or not.

Suddenly the birds were out, the Buddhas seemed more majestic and genuine and the park areas were so very peaceful. An overall great day.

Too late to climb to the top, unfortunately

Too late to climb to the top, unfortunately

People’s square

On the final evening, we took a trip to People’s square, a very Mall-filled, westernised place not dissimilar to Leicester, Nottingham, London or any generic British city. However, it was much bigger in scale.

Ryan, Munton, Phil

Ryan, Munton, Phil

We got a quick drink from starbucks and sat peoplewatching for a short while before roaming down the very long road of glorious golden and neon lights that took us to East Nanjing Road where we got on the train to West Nanjing Road for some Vietnamese cuisine.

Chinese food is great and all, but Shanghai is a very multinational city of multiple influences, so it was a cool idea to embrace as many cultures as we could during our time here. Overall we tried British, American, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese and even made some Mexican at home.

The Final  Night

The final hours utterly sucked, for me anyway, since it turned out literally everyone i know is apparently massively into wrestling, one of the worst thing i’ve ever had to sit through on multiple occasions. Given it was the last night, I figured I was outvoted and did my best to tolerate it for as long as possible, but it being a 3-hour show they were all dedicated to seeing the end of, my headphones were not going to cut it and I had to give up and go home.

I said by farewells and that was that.

I decided to get up nice and early to see them off to end things on a proper note, say, D.

Unfortunately, just before I arrived, it turned out that one of them lost their car keys, of all things. They returned to the apartment with James to hunt for it, to no avail. Meanwhile, another had to re-pack his entire luggage, unaware of the fact that his litre of baijou, cans of beer and bottles of soju were liquids and banned from hand luggage.

I found them the right bus and sent them on their way. The next thing I knew, they were home all well and dry, after a lot of hassle with the car, RAC and a locksmith.

It was truly fantastic to finally have somebody visit me from home. It took 4 years for anyone at all to visit me, So thanks, guys, for the effort in my 5th year abroad. I don’t know when I’ll see them again but with friends like this, it doesn’t really matter.

See ya next time - Probably in England again.

See ya next time – Probably in England again.

Next up, my mum comes to Shanghai in May 2015. (Don’t expect a link here since she isn’t here yet and I doubt I can be bothered to update this post when the time comes)

I just witnessed birth

Me and four friends were hanging out just playing Settlers of Catan, when, just as I was about to slam down the winning dice, the heavily pregnant cat of the house, Ash, poked her head out of her box and jumped out.

We joked that there would be a baby squeezed out of her like a toothpaste tube if she keeps jumping around, but we turned out to be more accurate than we were prepared for; half a baby was sticking out from her, back feet first.

Suddenly things became chaos. Ash is a runt, tiny thing and given that she wouldn’t be expected to survive in the wild, it would be even more unlikely for her to survive giving birth, so we were all pretty concerned when she appeared to be struggling a lot.

She started by walking around, as if trying to escape the pain. she then couldn’t find a way to sit, having no idea what exactly to do. The baby wasn’t moving, the cat wasn’t pushing, she appeared to give up for a few minutes.

If we had any clue what we were doing, we might have thought this was pretty normal, but we didn’t, so we got increasingly worried. Our first screw up was to try and pull the baby very softly, help her get it out, but after hearing a crack of a leg, we decided we’d leave the torture until a little more body is out.

When we felt she was struggling again, we attempted, with a clean towel as to not get our scent on it, to pull from the body. Again, softly. She complained about this so we left her to it. She took to her feet again after a few minutes and started walking around, swinging the half-baby left and right, sitting on it, seemingly bending the whole thing a full 90 degrees at times. She even ran at a point and we had to pin her down at risk of crushing the poor thing. We had additional concerns that it was coming feet first rather than head first, but it turns out that’s just a human thing and otherwise pretty normal in cats.

Eventually, it just popped out, and after a lick and a collective breath of dread, meowed. Part one of ? complete.

More worry came as she decided to abandon the kitten. It was very weak, unable to move in any way. We read that it would be stumbling around to look for the milk, but it made no effort other than meows to move even a slight muscle twitch. Ash had happily abandoned it to concentrate on the next one, leaving it on the cold tile flooring. Eventually we got some carpet available and she picked the baby up, dumped it on there and left it.

This was a going theme for the night. We ended up getting formula ourselves and feeding it the best we could, watching its breathing get slower and slower while ash continued to not give a damn.

Keeping Enya alive

Keeping Enya alive

The second kitten came out like it was routine by now, and it was stronger, able to walk and more healthy looking on the whole. It was immediately taken to the milk and covered with warmth by Ash. The second kitten, still left alone.

We put the first kitten with her after some feeding to encourage her, but she ended up just sitting on it, perhaps a way to kill it given our suspicion that it was a defected model in the eyes of a cat mum.

We had a choice of either taking care of the kitten ourselves, having 2 hour shifts for 24 hours, 2 weeks or so of feeding and sleeping it, and have it die or be killed by Ash regardless, or leave them to do whatever is natural and if it gets killed, at least the other 1+ may survive.

The placenta of the first kitten was still attached and only half eaten, whilst the other was fully eaten, so there was no reason to believe Ash was interested in the first one whatsoever.

We left Ash to do her face sitting.

The third and final kitten came while we all slept. This one was also fine. By the time the decision came to trash the first one, the attention of Ash was given to it and by the next day, all three were looking clean, healthy and cute.

Enya, Smash and Emmanuel IV

Enya, Smash and Emmanuel IV

Today, the third one died. We aren’t sure how but its possibly due to a lack of milk or heat. Our goal now is to do whatever we can to keep the others alive while Ash continues to be absolutely useless at mothering.

We will name the first one Enya and the second one Smash, based on the music that was playing at the time of birth.

I am looking after the other adult, Heisenberg, aware of the risk that he may attempt to kill the other two. At some point I will, at least temporarily, take one of them.

End.