Contrary to the Owner’s Impression, This Cat Is Still Only in Its First Life

The call to Laguna Beach’s Animal Services folks came from a woman who thought her cat had died and was pinned under a mattress. An officer found the creature atop a tall clothes dresser -- and very much alive.

“She had just gotten the cat,” explained Officer Joy Falk, “and she assumed it had died because it wouldn’t come when she called.” Obviously, she didn’t know much about those infernal beasts.

Slithering right along: Speaking of animal reports, Falk said snake sightings are on the rise in Laguna Beach. Some of the creatures are abandoned pets.

“We got a call about one that was left behind in a house being shown for sale -- a 12-foot python in the middle of the room,” Falk said.


Obviously, the buyers hadn’t been told about the snakeskin carpet.

Rattlers also are appearing more frequently of late. “It may be because we’ve had a little bit of a warm spell,” she said.

“And there are good food sources here for them: rodents, foliage.”

They too can wind up in strange places. Falk recalled the rattler that was found hanging over the lip of a toilet in a lawyer’s office one morning.


“They saw it when they were going to make coffee,” Falk said. “That’ll wake you up. You don’t need coffee.”

I know what you’re wondering about a rattlesnake found in a lawyer’s office. No, it wasn’t an employee.

Clean breaks: Today’s unusual offers (see accompanying) include:

* A cleaning service that seems to be saying it will add dust to surfaces (from Rita Zwern of Burbank).

* A carwash with a Christian theme (Sarah Marquez of San Pedro).

* A cleaner/tailor whose symbol doesn’t exactly promise speedy service (John Wade of Newbury Park).

* And finally, our mystery of the day, a cleaning shop that asked customers to “get.” “Was it supposed to be ‘git?’ ” wrote Clare Taylor of Hacienda Heights, obviously a western fan.

Your tireless columnist phoned and found out it was supposed to say, “Get another one free.”


Foul play: A few days ago, the Lakers’ Shaquille O’Neal was awarded the game ball in Sacramento after scoring his 20,000th career point only to find that someone had scrawled a vulgar message on it.

The Laker star is not popular with the Sacramento team, having referred to the Kings as “Queens” and to guard Mike Bibby as a “Boy Scout.” So naturally, the Kings were prime suspects. (Of course, Shaq has been known to dress down his own teammates too.)

But Sacramento Bee columnist R.E. Graswich may have solved the crime.

He heard from a ticket holder, Greg Rogers, who saw another fan grab the ball during a timeout and write on it. The fan’s kid then tossed it back to the referee.

Rogers expressed surprise that the defiler hadn’t come forward.

“A lot of people,” he said, “want to shake his hand.”

miscelLAny: A commentary on the image of politicians these days? Pepperdine’s student newspaper Graphic says that during an assembly of student body presidential hopefuls, candidate Steve Lyle gave his speech while wearing mouse ears and mouse gloves.



Steve Harvey can be reached at (800) LA-TIMES, Ext. 77083, by fax at (213) 237-4712, by mail at Metro, L.A. Times, 202 W. 1st St., L.A. 90012 and by e-mail at