Monday, February 04, 2008

Why I need a cat-nap

My husband has been out of town less than 24 hours and I'm already plotting to "lose" his cat. Okay, she's not exactly his cat; she's our cat, and we carefully divide the cat-care duties: the husband feeds, pets, brushes, plays with, and thoroughly spoils the cat. I clean the catbox.

She's not a terribly demanding cat most of the time, but when the guy who fills her food dish leaves she gets a little alarmed. This morning she began expressing this alarm at about 4:00 and she didn't stop until I got up and fed her.

I tried to ignore her at first. She doesn't have claws, but she sort of bats her paws against the bedroom door to make it rattle and meows in a loud and insistent manner, as if to say, "Who's in charge here? Where's my food? Doesn't anyone care about my NEEDS?!!" I do care--I care deeply--but I'd rather care a little later in the day. At first I resisted feeding her, assuming that if I give in and feed her at 4:30 a.m. today, tomorrow she'll want to be fed at 3:30. But I couldn't sleep through the caterwauling and I was getting less relaxed as time went on, so I finally got up and dumped some kibble in her dish.

"Satisfied?" I asked, but to a cat with food in front of her face, I am invisible.

I spent the next two hours trying unsuccessfully to get back to sleep, and when I finally got up, the cat was snoring comfortably on the sofa. Tomorrow I intend to wake her up at 3 and demand my breakfast, and while I'm eating, we'll have a little chat about her neglect of her mouse-catching duties. It's time that cat learned to sing for her supper--as long as she doesn't do it at 4 a.m.

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