I love my cats. I try hard not to love them to the extent of being a crazy cat lady and, most days, I think I succeed. There are some moments, though, where the truth cannot be avoided: I’ve been brain-washed.
That’s the only way to explain the strange and inconvenient habits I’ve developed over the years. They might seem perfectly reasonable to me, but none are easy to explain to non-cat-people who happen to witness them in action.
Here are some examples:
1. I check for cats before closing any door, drawer, or cabinet in my house. No matter how ridiculously improbable it is that there is a cat in there.
This is one of those habits that I’ve learned through experience. It doesn’t matter how small a drawer is, or how high up a cabinet is– if it is open for any significant length of time, a cat will climb in.
When Dave and I adopted our first cat, we were living in an apartment that had a cabinet above the toilet. To get to it, I had to stand on a stepladder and stretch up my tippy toes. One day, while I was taking a bath, I heard a scratching sound coming from the cabinet. I reached up to check on it and, sure enough, out came a flying cat.
I didn’t bother asking her how she managed to get in that cabinet, by the way. Cats are the world’s best secret-keepers.
2. I hesitate before buying canned food.
Somehow, no matter where you are in the house, cats can hear a can opening. I’m pretty sure mine can hear me think about opening a can.
After the 47th meow, you begin to really wish that you had opened a can of cat food, and not just garbanzos.
You go into a full-blown garbanzo panic, fueled by meow-inspired adrenaline surging through your body: “They won’t eat these! I was so stupid to open beans instead of cat food. What was I thinking?! How do I make them stop??“
It’s not worth it. Buy fresh foods.
3. I don’t wear mittens.
I value warmth, but I value my fingers more. As soon as your fingers go into a mitten or glove, all cats see are mitten-shaped mice.
4. I respond to any sound as if it’s a real thought.
It started with responding to meows. Now, some guy in the grocery story hiccups and I turn to him and say, “Yes?”
5. I don’t put bedsheets on the bed.
Well, I do, but I do it the slow and laborious way– one corner at a time, in the dark, in total silence.
If you try to fluff a bed sheet into the air like that old parachute game we used to play in class, you will, almost certainly, catch a cat.
Trying to put a bed sheet on the bed is the fastest way to rip up your bedsheets and irritate the animal that winds up caught inside.
It’s not worth it!
Are you a cat-person? Do you have any strange habits lent to you by years of living with pets?