Cathouse Kitchen

21 Dec

Here’s a hundred words for Friday Fictioneers to add a little warmth to your morning. As often happens with the photo prompts that we use each week, I took one look at the one provided by  Scott Vannatter and the title appeared instantly in my mind. This may not be the right way to go about things but sometimes it just is what it is. With the title firmly in place all I had to do was write a story. Easy, right? Try joining us and see.

Friday Fictioneers is a great exercise in concise writing and/or self delusion originated by Madison Woods and currently hosted by Roxette Wisoff-Fields. Each week authors from around the world write a very short story based on a photo prompt (the big one  with the cat on the table shown a little farther down).  The prompts are just that; prompts, and need not be taken literally.


This week’s stories can be found here.

Cathouse Kitchen

“You need to show him the door, Becky,” said Joy, our madam, from the entrance to the kitchen where I was making scrambled eggs, buttered toast and coffee.

“But why?” I stalled, knowing the rules.

“He’s not going to leave if you start feeding him and pretty soon he’ll be underfoot and causing trouble with the other girls. You want that?”

What I wanted was to slip back under the sheets and make love one more time.

“He paid for the whole night.”

“Sunup in thirty minutes, Becky. You give him his money’s worth, he won’t mind breakfast to go.”






Cat Fight
Cat fight

68 Responses to “Cathouse Kitchen”

  1. newpillowbook December 21, 2012 at 3:44 am #

    Now, that’s an original interpretation! I’m pretty sure the cat in the picture is a tom, but he probably isn’t in the mood for toast and coffee. (Eggs, who knows?)

    Love the kitten photo!

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 3:47 am #

      Dear NPB,

      Never was about the cat. 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting.



      • newpillowbook December 21, 2012 at 3:49 am #

        It – it wasn’t?? 😉

  2. boomiebol December 21, 2012 at 3:44 am #

    I like your take on this…very very original.

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 3:48 am #

      Dear Boomie,

      Thanks for reading. See you soon.



  3. erinleary December 21, 2012 at 4:07 am #

    Nice way to spin a tale, Doug. Quite a ‘fur ‘ piece from my down home literal use of the prompt. I like that you also included your own cat – mine is featured as my Linkz icon.

    • erinleary December 21, 2012 at 4:19 am #

      P.s. do you have a pet name for Rochelle or is that a typo? 🙂

      • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 4:22 am #

        It’s a running gag started by a typo from Rich and carried on by Ted and Rich and myself. New name a week. 🙂



      • erinleary December 21, 2012 at 6:10 am #

        Got it – I figured you weren’t making random mistakes, but had to ask….

  4. tedstrutz December 21, 2012 at 4:21 am #

    My father said to never fall in love with your merchandise… I guess it goes the other way too.

    Looks like you are the one with the hair on end! Cute cat.

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 4:26 am #

      Met that cat in a mountain kitchen in the Swiss Alps. It was the friendliest staff member.



    • wmqcolby December 22, 2012 at 9:54 pm #

      Im laughing so hard, I can’t se to ritte thiiis …!!!!

    • TheOthers1 December 25, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

      Never fall in love with your merchandise? That’s probably the most interesting way I’ve seen that phrased. But if its so good you can’t help yourself, what then?

      I liked this story. You’re very creative.

      • dmmacilroyDouglas macIlroy December 25, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

        Dear CC,

        I love it when you visit and comment. Becky knows what she wants and what to do. Lucky guy, huh?



  5. claireful December 21, 2012 at 8:20 am #

    Funny where one picture can take so many people – even back to bed. Great story.

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 8:28 am #

      Dear Claire,

      Thanks for reading and commenting. Looking forward to getting after the list. Have a good weekend.



  6. Judee December 21, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    I love how your mind shifted to create the title from the picture, and then took it from there. I love the line about feeding him, especially with the cat in the picture – though it was clear to me you weren’t talking about a cat. 😉 Great little behind the scene glimpse into a world most of us don’t understand. I could see this being the beginning of something longer, a romance novel perhaps. Certainly would be atypical, considering the profession of the main female lead, but wouldn’t that make it even more interesting?

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 4:49 pm #

      Dear Judee,

      Your detailed and descriptive comment has made made day, week and month. I’m glad you got that my story was never about that cat. You have planted a nice seed in the back of my mind about a longer story. I am intrigued and have been thinking about it for several hours now. I wonder if it might not be a good idea to thoroughly research the subject.

      Thanks for reading, commenting, and the push toward breakfast.



      • Judee December 22, 2012 at 9:43 am #

        Um thoroughly research? ;D Have fun with that!

  7. rochellewisoff December 21, 2012 at 9:21 am #

    Dear Duncan,
    This should be a lesson to us all to be careful about what and whom we feed. Where your mind will take us never ceases to amaze me. You painted a picture for me and provided a laugh in a few words. Egg McTumble to go please.
    Diatomaceously Yours,

    • Russell December 21, 2012 at 7:22 pm #

      Now, now, Roxette/Raquel you should be calling Delbert names – Rupert

  8. Sandra December 21, 2012 at 10:44 am #

    Nice to have a different take on the prompt Doug, enjoyed this. Loved the picture with the cat. Now if I remember rightly, the next step in that little encounter is where she lies down on her back, inserts her claws into your wrist and tears the hell out of the underside of your arm with her back feet. See, there’s nothing new under the sun so far as we women are concerned… 🙂

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 11:00 am #

      Dear Sandra,

      Yes, that’s how it usually goes but I got lucky that day and all we did was rough house a little more before I was off into the cold again.

      Your comment had me rolling around on the floor laughing fit to cry. It was better than most of the stories this week. Thank you so much for bringing a cat lover’s perspective to that picture. It is a favorite of mine.

      I love cats. You scare a human baby, a puppy and a kitten, the baby cries, the puppy whimpers and the kitten bares its fangs and unsheathes its tiny claw and hisses. Gotta love that spirit.

      Merry Christmas.



  9. unspywriter December 21, 2012 at 11:34 am #

    A chuckle is a great way to start Apocalypse Day! Great story, and the title is the best!

    Here’s mine:

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 10:18 am #

      Hi Maggie,

      The Alpaca Lips have passed us by. Oh, well. The ‘news’ talking heads will soon be reporting on the next date of doom threatening us.

      I’m glad you like the title and the story. Thanks for stopping by.



  10. elappleby December 21, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Great story. And I’m glad you’ve explained why you keep mispelling Rochelle’s name too – I was beginning to wonder 😀

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 4:34 pm #

      Dear El,

      Thanks for stopping in to read. Last story I’ll ever write here, to steal from J.R.R. Tolkien, ‘at the end of all things.’ Don’t tell anyone we’re messing with Roxette’s name. She hasn’t a clue and never reads theses comments.



  11. elmowrites December 21, 2012 at 5:17 pm #

    oh Doug, trust you to take a cute cat pic and turn it into smut!!!
    Great lines in this, and I love how you mix the analogy of the cat with the John. Once again, your gentle writing reveals so many layers to the careful reader.

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:45 am #

      Dear Jen,

      Smut? Is that the best you can do? I’m hurt. 🙂 (but I’ll survive.)

      Thanks for the great and generous comments. Coming from you, they are high praise indeed. (Obligatory tickles to Sebastian, please. Thanks)



      • elmowrites December 22, 2012 at 4:58 pm #

        I can’t help the low blows, Doug; I’m epicly resentful of your popularity amongst the fictioneers! Until I get 54 comments (and counting), I shall continue to be wicked and spiteful. Just be grateful I’m not my MC’s mother-in-law!

  12. Jan Brown December 21, 2012 at 5:28 pm #

    Very creative, you rascal! And I love your “cat fight” photo!!!

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:48 am #

      Dear Jan,

      Thanks for the vote of confidence and the thumbs up for the ‘Cat Fight’.



  13. Russell December 21, 2012 at 7:26 pm #

    Wow, they serve breakfast too? No wonder they have so many repeat customers. Loved the story, Delbert. Let me know if Roxette doesn’t send you the link to the Hitchcockish short film. It great!
    Have a great Christmas – Rufus

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:53 am #

      They serve breakfast to me.

      Thanks for dropping by, Russell. Thanks for the christmas wishes, my friend. You do the same, okay?



  14. Lora Mitchell December 21, 2012 at 8:38 pm #

    I expected nothing less from you Doug. Love your profile kitty pic. ps: The FF tone has certainly changed since Madison departed. Thanks for visiting and commenting on mine.

    • Lora Mitchell December 21, 2012 at 8:50 pm #

      Merry Christmas and God Bless !!!

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:58 am #

      Dear Lora,

      By changed, do you mean my stories have changed or that some of the prompts lend themselves to more varied story lines?

      You’re welcome re my visit to yours. I always think of you as my partner in high altitude writing.



  15. Joyce December 21, 2012 at 9:09 pm #

    Wow. This is a different twist to the photo prompt. One can find all kinds of ways to turn a phrase or two, a different slant or just a whole different kind of story read into it. the cat looks perplexed as well. 🙂

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 10:01 am #

      Dear Joyce,

      I just go where the prompt takes me. I hope that cat won’t hold it against me. Thanks for stopping by to read and comment.

      Merry Christmas, Joyce.



      • Joyce December 22, 2012 at 3:37 pm #

        Same to you, Doug. A safe, healthy, merry and bright Christmas. It is interesting how one picture can send writers into all kinds of directions. Trying to get into the inner recesses of a writer’s mind is not easy at times, but helps to understand where they are going to take us readers.

  16. The Bumble Files December 21, 2012 at 10:31 pm #

    Dear Doug,
    That was unexpected! Well done providing an original story here. Sounds like she’s getting a little emotionally involved here. That could spell trouble or maybe a way out. I also like the way you started this, talking about showing “him” the door which I take to mean kitty and/or customer. Nice job!

    • dmmacilroy December 21, 2012 at 10:40 pm #

      Dear Amy,

      Thanks for your great comments. I wanted it to sound for a moment like it was about the cat, but it never was. Figured there’d be a lot of those and I’d be the runt of the litter. And yes, Becky does seem to be having boundary issues, but who doesn’t? I really appreciate you seeing past the cat and into the cathouse.



      • The Bumble Files December 21, 2012 at 10:53 pm #

        I couldn’t get past the cat with mine. I applaud you for your original thinking. It’s inspiring. Thanks!

  17. dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 12:52 am #

    Dear Tom,

    Thanks for such insight into my creative process….wish I’d have thought of the booze. I’ll credit you in the novel, Cathouse Blues. I appreciate you stopping in and entertaining me with your comment. Supposed to be the other way round, but maybe this was a case of you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. Hoping so.



  18. rich December 22, 2012 at 2:26 am #

    i once had five cats at one time. was a pain in the ass but amazing for sure. however, to have five “kitties” would be eve more amazing! well done.

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 10:15 am #

      Kitty scratch fever, here I come.

      Thanks for reading, Rich.

      Merry Christmas, too.



  19. kz December 22, 2012 at 3:00 am #

    what a unique original story… and a cute photo ^^

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:18 am #

      Thanks KZ,

      I am heartened that you liked it. (and my cat fight photo, too:)



  20. billgncs December 22, 2012 at 4:29 am #

    Hello Doug —

    It was never about the cat and it came through loud and clear. I agree with others that could lend itself to a longer tale. Sometimes it’s all about the pussy. Merry Christmas

    • yerpirate December 22, 2012 at 8:06 am #

      Just saw this comment – made me laugh and laugh!

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 10:07 am #

      Dear Bill,

      Still laughing:) You’ve a way with words:) Merry Christmas to you, too.



  21. Perry Block December 22, 2012 at 7:47 am #

    Doug, I won’t make the obvious comment about what the cat is meant to signify. Cool & very provocative take on the prompt and … umm…. where is this place?

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:21 am #

      It’s in my mind, otherwise i’d give you the address post haste. Thanks for visiting and commenting, Perry.



  22. yerpirate December 22, 2012 at 8:05 am #

    Very original story, and I found it a very touching story, with the scene in the kitchen reading as if it was a scene from a film. There is potentially tragedy behind the love, and all of the actions are significant, the cooking especially. I’m pretty sure he did not pay for the whole night, adding poignancy to the story.

    • dmmacilroy December 22, 2012 at 9:30 am #

      Dear Managua,

      Can’t thank you enough for you insightful comments and thoughts on the Cathouse Kitchen. You really took a while and looked deep into my characters. I appreciate the time and thought. i like the way you took their relationship a few step farther than I let on in the story. Makes me think that you’re right about him probably not paying for the whole night. The seed about a longer work based on this prompt has been planted and you’re watering the garden. Mahalo.



      • yerpirate January 2, 2013 at 8:55 am #

        I remember this story still by the way…so don’t let it wither up….!

  23. glossarch December 22, 2012 at 5:13 pm #

    This is a complicated story and took me a while to be sure I understand, but I enjoy that sort of thing and I appreciate the depth of your story. Plus I love the title. Well done!

  24. H.L. Pauff December 22, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

    It looks like you’re on the wrong end of that cat fight. Great take on the prompt. It’s always a thrill to see what you come up with.

  25. wmqcolby December 22, 2012 at 7:25 pm #

    Like Johnny Carson to Raquel Welch so many years ago, you looked at the photo and said, “Sure. Get the damn cat out of the way.”
    Thanks for your literary disobedience. Inspired me to take up piano and look for work. But, I work in TV … same thing.

  26. Tessa December 22, 2012 at 11:17 pm #

    What a great story! Everybody said it all! 🙂

  27. Parul December 23, 2012 at 3:28 am #

    That is very original.
    The first time I read it I didn’t quite get the link with the prompt. But later it got clear.
    Very clever Doug! Lol
    Merry Christmas! 🙂

  28. Caely December 24, 2012 at 2:04 am #

    My dear friend,

    Yet another perfect story, seems like the stomach is the way to anyone’s heart, eh?

    I adore the kitten picture ❤

    Lots of love,

  29. nightlake January 18, 2013 at 12:45 am #

    this was real fun:) a very nice read

  30. marymtf July 2, 2013 at 2:44 am #

    A cat in a cathouse. Brilliant title. I would have kept the cat. Lots of smiles for your story.

    • dmmacilroy July 2, 2013 at 4:42 am #

      Dear Mary,

      Thanks for reading and commenting. I appreciate it.




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    […] A prime example of stepping outside the box,  inspired by the same photo, is from Doug MacIlroy.  […]

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