Sheltering in Place – Day 24

Everything I am, I owe to my cat. Now some people might call this a harsh assessment of me, the human being. But I feel that Ellie has shown me areas of my personality that could use some work.

First, humility. I can say with no small amount of pride that when I am with her she doesn’t seem to mind. This has boosted my self-esteem tremendously. Being not minded by your cat is a feat unlike any other. It is not often that your cat gives you a free-to-walk-about-the-place card. I take this with the humbleness it deserves.

Second, clarity. Having prolonged chit-chats with another entity who dozes off upon occasion or interjects the conversation with yawning goes a long way in reminding one to keep up the pace of the subject matter. Do not rest or linger upon a particular subject. Do not indulge in long-windedness. When I do, Ellie hops off the bed and heads for her cereal bowl. Or litter pan. Either way, she makes it clear I am never going to win the debate championship. Brevity is all.

Third, campaigning. Rubbing bellies, chuffing under chins, scratching behind ears goes a long way to winning over a constituent to your way of thinking. Democrats and Republicans take note. If you are looking for a canoodle with a warm, fuzzy thing, consider doing this. Do not, however, do this with two-legged constituents, especially if they answer to the name of Tiffany or Peaches. This has gotten many a politician in deep trouble, often putting the kibosh on a promising career. As Ellie has said, choose your companions wisely. Then chuff away.

Fourth, compromise. You are not going to have your way completely. In fact, you may not have your way at all. So you wanted the quilt and throw pillow for your very own to watch television comfortably on the bed. Forget it. You are going to be allowed to have 1/8th of the king-size bed with a widthwise, stretched-out cat who needs her legroom. This is providing you have brought a certain amount of treats along to sweeten the deal. As for me, I never go anywhere without a pocketful of Temptations.

Fifth, unconditional love. Demands are plentiful and rewards hard-won. But they are so worth it. A purr, a rub, a smile, a caress, a hairball, a swat, a scratch, a hiss. And then there’s going to be what the cat brings to the relationship. It ain’t gonna be easy. But it can be done. Because teaching the ways of the world is a cat’s specialty.


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