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The following is a true story. Really.

I HAVE A CAT NAMED RANNIE. SHE STEALS THINGS.

Don't worry about the origin of the name; that's another story for another time. For now, all you need to know is that she's of above-average intelligence. That and, like I said, she's a klepto. Not jewelry or cash money, though that would be cool. No, she steals food. Worse still, she steals my food.

And she's gotten really good at it.

First, a little background. She's a fat, oblong sphere of a feline -- think a large eggplant or a medium-size melon but with fur and paws. I rescued her from an animal shelter about five years ago. She wasn't fat then. That changed under my care. She progressed (or regressed, come to think of it) from having a normal appetite to being hungry all the time. All. The. Time. At first, she would just sit and cry outside the closet where I keep her food. When she realized that wouldn't get her fed, she turned to a life of crime. If I was making dinner and turned my back, she'd leap onto the counter and abscond with pieces of cheese or morsels of meat. She's also a fan of ranch dressing, lapping it up like water.

But that was small-time stuff. And she knew it.