Saturday, 23 June 2012
I am ruled by an unholy trinity of moggies. They are all black and they are all the same age.
I’ve discovered something else about them:
They are all older than me.
In human years, my three cats are all 10 years old – and no, I am not younger than that (though I wish I was). If you translate my cats’ age into feline years, all three of them are 57 years old.
And that explains a lot.
It explains why all three of them are as grumpy as hell.
As I get older, I see more and more nonsense to rant about and I have worn out many soapboxes as I have pontificated about the inane, the stupid and the ridiculous. I lose patience with stupid people, anal people, jobs-worths, egomaniacs, pseudo-intellectuals, self-important arseholes, preachers, cosmetic punks and tossers.
I tear my hair out about the way the world is becoming and I bellow at anybody who is willing to listen to who can’t get away fast enough when I unleash my soapbox.
I can imagine you now saying “Shut up you hypocritical Mancunian windbag!” but at the same time trying to picture a grumpy cat standing on a soapbox.
That’s silly; they do not stand on soapboxes and rant. Instead of ranting they each respond in their own special way. Whereas I rant about the insanity of life, the target of their grumpiness is …
Yes – I drive my cats to grumpiness.
Each one behaves differently.
Jasper, the biggest cat, used to have a carefree existence and tolerate my attempts at baiting him. He would roll over and tempt me to stroke his tummy, before grabbing my hand in his paws and actually licking it making sure that I knew who was boss by digging his claws into my skin just enough to prevent me from pulling away without tearing my flesh. If I tried to pull away he would kick me with his back legs and gently bite me. It didn’t hurt and we had fun.
Nowadays he meows when I try to tempt him to attack me and stares at me as if I am piece of waste floating in a cesspit. The meow is grumpy; you have to hear it to believe it. I imagine him saying “Bugger off you great oaf! I’m trying to sleep.”
He also parks his fat arse outside our bedroom door in the morning and when we get up, we are greeted by an indignant meow that sounds like an old man saying “NOW!!!!!!”.
Poppy is terrified of everything but even she is grumpy. In the past she used to race around the house, fleeing from invisible pursuers with a high pitched “BBRRRPPP!!!!” noise. Whenever I entered the room, she would be away before I could say “Cat”.
Now she stays where she is, looking for an exit, and growls like a dog. Her ears flatten against her head and sometimes she actually hisses at me.
What’s going on?
Finally, we have our most recent additions, Liquorice the Hellcat. She is not scared of me at all and sits there watching me, like she watches prey. Sometimes, she is friendly and sits on my knee; the moment I move, though, she stares at me with a look that says “Do that again and I will take your face off.”
I don’t have much to compare Liquorice with in terms of what she used to be like, but she is showing lots of signs of utter impatience and sheer contempt with her life sharing a house with me.
She has her own chair in the lounge, which is next to a lamp; if I try to switch off the lamp at bedtime, she actually attacks me with a meow that is deep and menacing. She has also been known to stalk me, leaping out from behind a chair to attack my ankles – presumably because my antics make her want to tear me to pieces.
I’ve tried to remedy the situation, dear reader.
I no longer poke Jasper with my hands to get him to attack me; instead I scratch his ears, tickle his tummy and gently stroke him. He has actually started purring.
As for Poppy, I creep around the house, rather than (as Mrs PM describes it), stomping around like a demented elephant on crack! And now I can walk into a room with Poppy inside and she will allow me to stroke her gently or, if she’s feeling really generous, allow me the privilege of feeding her.
As for Liquorice, I simply let her walk all over me. This is not just to make her less grumpy; it is also a natural instinct to preserve my own life.
We are kindred spirits, my cats and I. I rant at my world, putting it to rights by hurling abuse at everything that is wrong with it. The cats treat me with utter contempt and tell me in no uncertain terms what they think of me, aided by growls, hissing, tooth and claw.
I have improved things and now they are less grumpy.
Is it too much to ask for the world to improve so that I can retire my soapbox too?