As you will probably guess from some of my previous postings I am afflicted with cats.
First of all there’s my own cats: I have two. The first we will refer to as “furry” as he has asked me to withhold his name (any cat owners will know what I mean by this – come on, admit it: you hold conversations with your cats). I can’t work out whether he is incredibly stupid or incredibly bright.
For instance: Furry will ignore the fact that there is food in his bowl a mere room away and pad upstairs at 4am, landing noisily on the bed before trampling all over your throat demanding to be fed. You ignore him for a bit, hoping he will settle down, but eventually give in and carry him down to the still full bowl telling him in no uncertain terms: “Look - food you daft cat!” (NB for followers of my previous blogs this could fit in with my “Cats rule the world” theory – he could be stopping me from dreaming up a way of harnessing the power of the sun).
However – I recently tried to stop the furry alarm clock from dribbling, licking and purring like a well tuned engine 2 inches from my ear by closing him in the downstairs room at night…only to find that he had worked out that if he turned his paw upside down he could get it under the gap and open the door. This resulted in Plan B – where I balanced something heavy just inside the door to stop him being able to squeeze out. However, he countered this move by pushing the object aside with his head. So – the result is that I have a cat clever enough to problem solve and open a door, but not clever enough to work out that simply locating the full bowl that is in exactly the same position as always would be a hell of a lot easier. Go figure.
Furry came with the house – he was hiding in the garden the day I came to view and has been inviting himself in ever since. I officially adopted him about 3 months ago and, after some years of perfect health, he instantly got ill and cost me £300 in the first month. He’s ok now, by the way.
My second cat is a little girl and we will call her “tiny”. She’s meek and timid and scared of her shadow when you are standing up, but will chase other cats out of the garden like a stampeding Rhino. Sometimes, if you’re sitting down, she will come and behave like a complete tart – performing head-rolls and demanding for her belly to be rubbed. Furry is definitely in charge and has to be stopped physically from eating all of Tiny’s food as well as his own.
The problem isn’t so much with my own cats – who get on pretty well aside from the occasional inexplicable fight (never more than one or two punches from Furry, or a mad dash of activity across the floor) – but with the other local cats. It’s impossible to go out into my back garden without being ambushed by the cat equivalent of the Jehovas Witnesses – not so much there to ask you about God as to ask you about your Fridge (or at least remind you where it is)
Cats thrive in my area – a relatively quiet road with big-ish gardens and lots of rubbish. Sometimes it can be like one of those scenes from a horror film where you step outside to realise that it’s all gone quiet and all eyes are following you. Come the day they work out how to open a tin for themselves I know they’ll turn on me – which will at least lead to an interesting epitaph.
I refuse to fit a cat-flap though – as this would result in it simply being easier to sign the house over to the cats and go and live in the shed. Meanwhile Tiny and Furry continue to thwart my art and writing career by inexplicably turning their noses up at food they were eating just yesterday, demanding to sit on my lap when I’m trying to research something on the net or just plain digging their claws into my flesh when I’m trying to sleep.
Still, despite all of this in my opinion anyone who says they don’t like cats is just plain wrong! (unless they’re talking about the musical, of course!)