I know I’ve talked about cats a lot lately, but I just want to say one more thing on the subject. My cat is a jerk. And I’m not taking about the ne’er-do-well either. No. It’s Shaylee, Fairy Princess of the Field. Oh, she’s beautiful, don’t get me wrong. She holds herself with a regal air and on top of that, she’s an extremely talented problem-solver. There is no drawer she can’t open. No door that can keep her trapped. No treat she cannot sniff out. I love her to death. But she’s still a jerk. I’m sure that the cat lovers out there will understand exactly what I mean by that.
What has me in this love/hate mood, you ask? Well, it’s an existential problem you might say. I feel as though I’m here on Earth, in this house in particular, solely as entertainment for my cats. Especially Shaylee.
The ne’er-do-well, aka Holly… Well, her joys are unpretentious and simple. “Oh look, there’s a half-full water bottle left on the counter. Let’s knock it down onto the wood floor in the middle of the night when everything is dead silent throughout the house.” “What, you’re trying to watch t.v.? Here, let me sit right in front of it during the climactic final scene of that movie you just spent two hours watching.” Yeah. That’s Holly. Annoying, but simplistic.
Shaylee on the other hand. She has upped her game to “master.” And her game? “Made you look.” She has such a habit of staring at walls and ceiling corners so earnestly that I had become convinced she wasn’t just staring at “nothing,” but rather, was actually being entertained by a ghost or some invisible demon or entity that I just couldn’t see.
I know better now. Now I know it’s her way of amusing herself at my expense. And…AND…she no longer tries to hide it. In the past, she would continue her fixated staring for some time even after I tried my best to detect the focal point of her concern…always failing, of course. I mean, she at least gave me that. She may have been calling out “idiot!” in her head but at least she was placating me in action. Well. Not anymore.
Nowadays, Shaylee will saunter into the room, jump on the couch or bed or wherever I happen to be (you’ll notice she never does this without an audience), perch herself ohhh so gracefully and after a moment of casual rest…to fool me, you see…she’ll suddenly perk up her ears, her eyes will get big, and then she focuses intently at some far off point behind my head. It’s freakin’ creepy, I tell you.
And I fight the urge. I always, always fight the urge. But eventually, I can stand it no longer. I just can’t help it. I have to look! It drives me absolutely bonkers until I look! And it never fails. As soon as I look, Shaylee will turn to gaze straight at me with an amazingly condescending smirk…as if to say “Made you look. Again. Idiot.” Then she turns away and lays down in her usual spot for a snooze.
Yeah. Like I said. Jerk.