I wonder if Hemingway had this problem?

Today is a writing day so obviously Rollie and Dorothy Barker decided to help by turning on the caps locks and making me lose my place and giving water damage to my keyboard and basically just giving me even more of a reason to procrastinate.

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Writing with pets.

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Part 2

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They are the perfect combination of horrible and entertaining, which is the exact tone I aim for in my writing so I guess it all works out.

Now back to work.

100 thoughts on “I wonder if Hemingway had this problem?

Read comments below or add one.

  1.         fluffy cat butts make my day. who is rollie and why have i never seen him before??      

    (She’s actually our oldest cat but she hides a lot so you don’t usually see her as much. She’s the one who sits on my head after I dry my hair. There’s a picture someone on the internet of her balancing on my head. ~ Jenny)

  2. Hemingway had polydactyl cats, didn’t he?
    If you installed doors it could be a work related tax deductible. (But so much less fun for us.)

  3. Ok – screen goes black, then the audience hears “Seriously?” and a heavy sigh. This encapsulates my entire life. #TeamJenny

  4. Are you sure Victor doesn’t come in at night & smear peanut butter & tuna juice in your work space???

  5. I’m thinking Hemingway may have even had it worse with that house full of six-toed cats. There were probably enough extra toes to be equivalent to five extra cats! 😂

  6. HAAhahahaha! Was the water damage from all of Dorothy Barker’s licking? And I just LOVE the kitty paw to your nose. Quite adorable.

    When I got my last cat, I made sure to discourage the cat-on-the-desktop habit. I’d started with kitty videos, then realized the monster habit I was creating.

    Happy writing!

  7. I think it is a conspiracy of dogs and cats to take over the entire media of the planet by inserting subliminal things in our text. Eventually we might notice, but it will be much too late!

  8. I think I need the sound of your sigh recorded into one of those “that was easy” buttons from Staples. Then you could just push it when the animals came near. or…you could teach the pets to push it. Randomly it would say “Seriously?”. I’d buy that.

  9. The Guard Cat was CLEARLY protecting you from the paparazzi camera mounted on your computer. Or maybe protecting Dorothy, I’m not quite sure which. Both most likely. 🙂
    also I’m sure Hemingway did not have that problem but maybe he would’ve been a happier guy if he did. “Writing, at its best, is a lonely life.” 🙂

  10. That cat is petting your face. I know that seems stupid to point out because it was probably impossible to notice but there is a cat petting you.

    I can’t even.

  11. I don’t know about Hemingway, but I have a cat that’s closer to The Chainsaw Massacre-er than sweet and cuddly. She likes to stab me with a single claw (don’t ask me how she can extend just ONE claw) if I’m not paying any attention to her. Writing time is usually a bloody event around here. 😂

  12. Just in case you want to make your animal v. computer problem a little bit worse, make sure to invest in a touch screen computer. Then they can walk on the keyboard AND make crazy things happen on the screen every time their tails touch it! (I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to figure out what the hell the cats’ tails hit and how to undo it!)

    I have a cat that looks JUST like Rollie. Love those fluffy kitties!

  13. Hemingway’s cats Weir polydactyl. Can you imagine the damage they could do to a keyboard?

  14. Your smile is a balm and your giggles are music to our ears! Keep up the great “work”, everyone! Taking Hello Kitty to a whole new level! Thanks for sharing!

  15. I cannot stop giggling out loud! It’s almost as if they are trained to do that. Or maybe Victor has been secretly paying them? This totally made my day. I’ll buy that book!

  16. Aw but look at all those sweet kisses you got from both of them. Love how he turned off the camera like “You people don’t need to see this!”

  17. I fell ya, Jenny! I have two dogs and a kitty. I would have finished writing a novel had it not been for all the distractions and love they bring me.

  18.         Have you tried putting an "inbox" aka box for the cats on the desk so they can sit with you but not on you? A la "if I fitz I sitz"...there's a picture somewhere on the interwebs where a woman did this. LOL      

    (I have one and also a cat bed on the floor. They ignore it if I’m around. ~ Jenny)

  19. Cats are so rude with their butts, aren’t they? We have a cat that put his butt in my face whenever the TV is on, like I prefer to watch his bum. Did I mention he’s 20 lbs?

  20. These videos always make me laugh! I always think how great your nails look!! I also actually showed one to my reading club ( I am a middle school teacher) to show them some of the more fun challenges authors face everyday!

  21.         What did you last eat?!  Dorothy was going to town on your fingers.  Her tongue was gettin' all up in there.        

    (Fajitas. ~ Jenny)

  22. I feel like Hemingway smoke and drank enough that the polydactyls probably got all up in his notebooks and typewriter when he was at the bar or sleeping. He probably didn’t smell/taste nearly as good as you do. Then again, they also kick their own butt holes, so maybe there’s a flaw in my theory?

  23. There was the story about his first wife, Hadley, accidentally losing a bunch of his manuscripts while they were living in Europe. Based on your recent experience I now suspect his cats. They were probably just too embarrassed to admit it was the cat’s fault. He was also kind of a jerk like that. Hemingway, not the cat… but the cat might have been a jerk too. I’m not sure, I’m more of a dog person honestly.

  24. I took a break from writing one day and came back to find my cat playing a game of pinball on the computer (this was my first computer many years ago). Didn’t even know I had games included in it, or how to find them myself.

  25. I have nothing to say about anything in this post, but I just read your About page, where you don’t have any space for comments, so I thought I’d tell you here that I don’t have any badly taxidemied animals to send you, or even any coupons, but if I did I’d send them to you. Really, I would.

  26. I was actually at Hemingway’s house a couple of years ago and there was a huge sign out front that said “Please do not pick up cats”. It also said “No coconuts allowed” so I don’t know how Hemingway ever managed to write ANYTHING.

  27. I’ve been writing with a cat between me and my monitor all morning. I’m actually getting pretty good at it, thank goodness for autocorrect. Probably the first time anyone has everything timed that, eh?

  28. BEST
    I’m hiding in the bathroom at work trying not to cackle loud enough for anyone on the other side of the door to hear me! 😂😂

  29. OMG! Rollie booping you, petting your face and asking for kisses is the most PRECIOUS THING EVER!!! And then at the end, he goes back to being a typical asshole cat. “You won’t pay attention to me? GIANT EYEBALL APPEARS KNOCKS OVER THE CAMERA KNOCKED OVER!!!”

  30. TEAM ROLLIE YAssssS. “I hate to be a dick, but I was the first pet. Pet, remember? Like thissss, petting. Pet me.”

  31. Most people’s animals don’t love them this much or want this much attention you should feel honored lol. Ps I’d give up and cuddle

  32.         Actually, he probably had it worse since his cats were polydactyl and had thumbs.       

    (Ferris is polydactyl. We had to change all the doorknobs in the house. ~ Jenny)

  33. I’d suggest you’d get that software where you dictate and the words appear, but your writing would probably appear like “Ok stop it… stop licking. Rollie move! Can you just… c’mon you guys!”

  34. My cat sits on the desk, right in front of the monitor because obvs, I should know what I’m typing. I don’t have to see it, too. So glad to see this is “normal” behavior.

  35.         Is the camera on your phone, which is propped on your monitor, & Rollie knocked the phone over? It’s not the actual computer monitor that’s been knocked over.right?        

    (Sometimes I use photobooth on my computer to video them and they’ve knocked the monitor over before while being filmed but this time I was just using my phone. Nothing is safe. ~ Jenny)

  36. The look you make when it starts. And when Rollie looks at the camera and then turns it over? I needed this. I love how he thinks you’re his pet and strokes your hair and face. Don’t fall asleep. I didn’t forget you Dorothy Barker. She’s not food!

  37. I am so lucky my wolfdog can’t do this. Not because he doesn’t want to… he’s too big to fit on the table or in my lap so he settles for laying his head in my lap with SUPER EMOTIVE EYES or shoving my elbow until I pet him. Sometimes he lays under my feet, but I have a wheely chair, and it only takes one accidental pulling his butt hairs out moment to discourage that behavior.

  38. You have the nicest cats!! Mine are just not that into me unless it’s time for food!

  39. I imagine them grabbing their punch cards in the morning and punching out in the evening. Well, actually I assume they have Ferris do it since he has thumbs.

  40. Your furbabies are so adorable. I can’t imagine trying to crochet or knit with cats. My projects would sit forever unfinished. .

  41. They love you and know you love them. I love the gentle tapping on your face! My landlords kitten does that too. He loves shoulders, and necks.He snuggles there . It doesn’t matter if you’re busy he wants attention everything stops for him. Lol wouldn’t trade it for ANYTHING !

  42. Rollie reaching for your glasses made me laugh with a mouthful of fettucine alfredo and now it’s all over my phone!

  43. I have a great video of my dog refusing to make eye contact while he chews on my pen as I try to write. Pets are the worstbest!!!

  44. Omg – pretty sure Hemingway must have, because he had cats. I’m just dying. The dog is enough, but add in cat hijynx, and I’m just dead. lol.

  45. I’m laughing hysterically because my cat does this all the time too. Dorie insists that sleeping under my arm is the ONLY possible place for her when I’m blogging. I’ve now relegated her to my feet and she’s snoring, so she must be okay with it, but really? Under my arm? I feel ya Jenny!!!

  46. Our cat (the last of three brothers) has a built in “annoying” mode – a bit like the opposite of Buzz Lightyear’s Spanish mode. I was going to write a far more accurate adjective than “annoying”, but thought better of it.

  47. My kitty, who recently passed from cancer at an old age, used to sit on my mouse. In order to use it, I had to reach under the kitty belly, which of course was an invitation for “play”. And by play, I mean biting the shit out of my hand. As long as I didn’t need to use the mouse, and gave him pettings periodically, we were cool.

    The first day I worked at home was the day after he died. I cried. My other cats visit me on my telework days, but none hang around like that. I kind of miss it, though I do get more done.

  48. Sorry I meant to write “The first day after he died was a day I worked at home.” Damn you cut and paste! I can’t blame it on the cat this time.

  49. I feel like Rollie is the one saying “Really? Seriously?” because DB is getting all crazy with her “Fajitas! Yum!” act and distracting you from Rollie’s loveableness. I also feel like Hemingway would simply have pulled out his game rifle and shot any cat that tried to step on his typewriter while he was working or get between his pouring hand and drinking hand while he was getting plastered. Then refused to cry because it’s not MANLY, and got another cat.

  50. Cats will gently paw your face when they want attention, both my cats do it. They will also scratch the hell out of you anytime else. I know they make you paws in writing (paws/pause, get it…sigh) but the rest of us could watch this all day. All of which is okay since we aren’t writing. Waitaminnit, when WILL this book get done with such help??? Oh the irony of it all.

  51. Please let one chapter in your next book be as edited by the critters: all the typos, caps locks, random key strikes, and incoherent gobbledygook because you couldn’t see what you were doing.

  52. I don’t think, they allowed cats or dogs at the bar. Maybe that is the reason, why he wrote drunk.

  53. To be honest, I’m struggling a bit right now.The holiday season is rough for me. I do appreciate your blog helping me put things into perspective. I never realized how much typing I can’t do because of my cats! I thought it was just the kids. Do they get co-author credit?

  54. Just watched this again. You need to find a way to record and sell the “Seriously? [Big Sigh]” at the end. I would use that ALL.THE.TIME. on Facebook. In texts. It just sounds so perfect.

  55. Really, they are much more polite than my 90-lb. Lab. She just takes her snout and pushes my hands on the keys so I either type gibberish or can’t even get to the keyboard she starts stomping on:). Your dogs must be reading Emily Post . . .

  56. A friend of mine has an autistic son. At one of her teacher meetings the teacher mentioned how her son searched out the word REALLY on his interactive assistant when one of his class mates was having major melt down. She said, Of course he did. When ever he has a melt down I say “Really?”
    I thought of that as soon as you said “Really?” It’s such a gentle and somehow resigned way to address a situation that doesn’t fit into your intention.

  57. If you ever get to Key West, you have to visit the Hemingway House. He wasn’t just into cats, he was into six-toed cats. There are dozens wandering around the property and a graveyard full of past pets.

  58. i ADORE how Rollie just pats your face gently then a little bit harder. Like, “I want you to pay attention, PAY ATTENTION! yeeeees”

  59. He had very good taste in animals, and in mountain towns. Ketchum is beautiful. Also a recommended destination for any Hemingway fans. I know he’s always associated with Florida, so wanted to throw Idaho out there as well.

    I admire his taste in cats and landscapes but never could get into his books.

  60. Oh my gosh, I love watching other people’s pets do the same shit mine do. Like I want to learn Puppy Punting when I’m trying to write and they’re all over me, but when yours do it, it’s cute!

  61. Made me laugh out loud. Really, I love how Rollie was patting you, then petting you. And Dorothy, what lotion did you use,’cause she loves it! Maybe there is some software where you could just talk and your writing would appear on the computer. That way you could use both hands on the animals, which is what they think you should be doing anyway. Hahahaha. Thanks for sharing, it helped brighten up a kind of crappy day.

  62. OMG!!!! I am laughing so hard I am crying, which I so needed after the last few days. Laughing SO HARD, my dog came over to make sure I was ok, and started nudging my hand & licking it. He’s a 65 lb pittie, so he can’t come up on my lap to bug me, but he can still bug me, except this was sweet. He can be a pest, but also a great nurse and he does worry about me a lot. He a bit fat Sweetie Head. Just try to remember that, most of the time, they wouldn’t drive you nuts if they didn’t love you so much.

  63. Those videos are me literally any time I’m writing something on my computer.

  64. I love how Rollie pets your face while Dorothy is cleaning your fingers! My Cocoa head-butted my face this morning for her snuggles (belly rubs) in bed. She only cleans my fingers if I’ve been eating olives. She overcleans herself, poor dear. So little fur on her legs or belly.

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