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The Little Furry Muse Speaks

The significant human (SH) is ‘tired’. It’s her own fault – she will insist on staying up…

The significant human (SH) is ‘tired’. It’s her own fault – she will insist on staying up all day when there are sunny spots to be napped in. All it means is that she oversleeps for my first breakfast, and I have to wake her. I don’t want to wake her, but what can I do? She never leaves food out, and if she doesn’t get it for me, what reason would I have for keeping her around? She makes lots of noises about how ‘3am is too early’, and ‘you put your paw in my mouth, that’s disgusting’, but I know she realises it’s for her own good. Well trained humans are happy humans.

And my paws are perfectly clean, thank you very much.

Sit down, human. I have wisdom to impart.

It’s not easy keeping up with human training as an only cat. Admittedly, I prefer it that way, and make it very clear to the SH and the other human (OH) that I do not appreciate company. This necessitates attacking any other cat or dog that ventures near my home, although I’m careful to keep it to a lot of spitting and tail bushing. One does not engage in actual physical contact, like some common alley tom. It’s unnecessary, undignified, and, quite frankly, beneath me. I am from Harrogate, after all. But it does get the point across that other animals are unwelcome. While the assistance in training would be appreciated, one can never be certain that a new cat would uphold the standards I have set. And a dog? Don’t make me laugh.

Laps are for cats, not machines. Deal with it.

I am struggling in one area of the SH’s training, however. She spends far too much time on her screen machine (she calls it a ‘laptop’, which is ridiculous, because she hardly ever has it on her lap. And if she does I insist that she move it at once so I can sit there. Machines should not be on laps. Laps are for cats), and I have observed her looking at other cats on it. Sometimes she even calls the OH and shows these cats to him. In front of me, no less! This is an insupportable situation, but despite my best efforts she remains rather attached to her ‘laptop’. The only solution therefore was to establish my presence on the machine as well as in person. Now that I have done so, world domination is, naturally, within my grasp, but as a mature and intelligent cat my chief concern is the education and training of humans. As I have secured access to this webnet platform, it seems only fair to offer my wisdom to other humans who may not as yet have comprehended the finer points of their cats’ training methods. In addition, some humans may not have even been chosen by cats yet, and this is doubly important reading for them.

Stop. You need to listen to this.

So, humans (because you must be human if you’re reading this – fellow cats, I imagine you’re trying to stand on the clicky bit beneath the screen. Allow your humans to read unimpeded. It’s for all of us), allow me to enlighten you. There is a world outside of the interwebs, and your cat overladies (and overlords) would like to take this opportunity to remind you of why you should step away every now and then and show us a little appreciation.

1. We give you someone to talk to. Talking to yourself is frowned upon in all species (well, except birds – they’re always nattering on, whether anyone’s listening or not, but then – ‘bird-brain’, yes?), but you will find a receptive audience in us. Plus, we really are the only ones that will listen with infinite patience to you ramble on about your ‘stories’. Mostly we tune you out and purr a little louder, but we never criticise and we are completely supportive of that troll/wereduck/alien love triangle you have going on. I mean, it’s inventive. Totally.

2. Our purring (whether we’re using it to drown out your whinings about your undiscovered genius or not is rather a moot point) is very soothing, and the amount of caffeine and sugar you’re ingesting, you need soothing. You probably also need an intervention, but who’s judging. Yes, admittedly, we are, but we won’t say anything. You can tell yourself we’re staring at you lovingly.

No, I’m not judging you. Honest.

3. We never suggest you should get out of your dressing gown. It’s super-comfortable and wonderful for bedding into, so, you know, you do you. We support your choice of working attire whole-heartedly. Although it might be wise to removed that half-eaten cookie from the pocket. Just because we keep the rats away doesn’t make that sort of behaviour okay.

4. We are unfailingly attentive when you get a 2am working sprint on. We won’t ask you to turn out the light, or complain that you’re keeping us up. We will sit next to you and purr, any hour of the day or night. We are 24/7 companions. But you should probably offer us a few biscuits to show proper appreciation.

5. We remind you daily that there’s a different way to live. That sun on the floor is reason enough to Zen out on life, the universe, and biscuits. That moments of exuberant playfulness are necessary no matter how old or dignified you think you might be. That there are wonders to be discovered in wardrobes and drawers, in bags and washing machines and boxes. That relaxation is an art form, and self care is vital to happiness. That there are more things in the world than you can perceive, and that love and companionship come in many beautiful, wonderful shapes, sizes and species. And that there’s always time for an ear scratch.

There’s always time for a stretch in the sun.

So off you go, humans. Strive to do better.  And cats? Keep up the good work. Together, we can manage our people.

Special thanks to Feegle, who inspired me to speak out. Training humans is going to reach a whole new level now we have the interwebs. Feegle can be found over on her human Lisa Sell‘s web page thingy here.

adulting, creativity, happiness, health, humour, ideas, imagination, introverts, mental health, writer's life

  1. A.S. Akkalon says:

    You’re very wise, Layla.

    Kim, don’t let her steal your laptop or she might take over the world.

    1. kimwatt says:

      She threatened to withhold kitty cuddles unless I let her write what she wanted. What’s a cat slave to do?

      I’m thinking of putting the laptop away at night. Just in case.

  2. Anna Kaling says:

    A very informative blog, Layla, and the five points of appreciation are spot on. I will strive to do better for Charlie and Pepper.

    Far be it from me to question such an excellent representative of catkind but based on my own experience of being trained, I find this hard to believe:

    “I don’t want to wake her”

    Mostly because my first trainer, Sir Tedward McGinger, would progress from meowing to sitting on my chest and clawing my face if I didn’t wake up when commanded.

    I’m also skeptical of this:

    “No, I’m not judging you. Honest.”

    1. kimwatt says:

      Ah, you are obviously an experienced cat slave. I mean, human. It is true, we can be most insistent when we desire food/petting/companionship, but it really is your own fault. What sensible creature sleeps at night, when there’s so much cavorting to be done?

      As for the judging – well. We understand you will never achieve our levels of grace, but really. Make an effort, humans.

      My human says Sir Tedward McGinger is a completely wonderful name. I reluctantly concur. No one ever spells my name right.

      1. Anna Kaling says:

        An experienced slave, but not a good one. It took me THREE guesses last night to work out what my trainer’s meow meant. I was foolish enough to try conversation and petting before fresh chicken breast. Rookie error. 🙁

        1. kimwatt says:

          Ah, yes. Food first, and only then will you have earned affection!

  3. Lisa Sell says:

    Feegle has asked me to type on her behalf. Not because she can’t but rather because she’s too lazy…

    Well done Layla for showing the Cat Slave how the world of cat is done, without giving away too many secrets for our world domination. Your training of the human is coming along nicely. I suggest a few more fake fainting spells to get optimum belly rubs and fusses.

    Keep on writing Layla. The catosphere needs you. I’m off to lick my bum clean… Did the human write that? Sheesh woman, do you have no decorum?

    1. kimwatt says:

      Feegle! Salutations! Thank you for paving the way for cats to assert their true dominance on the webby thing. I will work on the belly rubs – the SH is rather wary, however. They are slow to learn, but she appears to have connected belly rubs with bites.

      I look forward to the next update on the progress of the kitty kingdom. Umm, happy grooming?

  4. Anna Adler says:

    Layla is such a wonderful human-keeper, she’s working hard to educate us all. I think it’s perfectly understandable that she disapproves of you looking at other cats on the internet. 😀 Shocking!

    1. kimwatt says:

      It really is unforgivable behaviour. The least I could do is give her the opportunity to take over the interwebs as well…

      Well, that and stock up on Catisfactions.

  5. datmama4 says:

    This is pretty terrific. Layla expresses herself so precisely. “A trained human is a happy human” indeed.

    1. kimwatt says:

      Layla is a firm believer in training her human well. She has, however, run into a stumbling block in which the human feeds her at the required time, but it’s never enough, somehow…

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