Friday, December 12, 2008
Why have they put this silly Christmas hat on me?
They've done it again. Some time as the days get longer here they try to put a silly red hat on me. Why? What's it all about? They've gone funny in the household. Odd things on the TV - less wildlife more choirboys (and I don't like small boys). The only bit I like are the tinkly things that later on they will hang on a tree. That's more like fun. I read in your book, The Joy of Cats, published under HER name, that a mad Victorian clergyman hung herrings on his tree. Why can't she do this instead balancing this hat on me? As you can see, I am not pleased at all.
This is the time of year when humans go slightly mad. Some of their behaviour is extremely vexing - loud tuneless caterwauling carols, the influx of strange humans turning up at all hours, inter-human aggression due to tiredness and drunkeness, human kittens and juveniles wanting to "pet" us, and thoughtless behaviour like dressing up cats. We don't need clothes or hats, thank you very much. We are not naked apes. We have our own fur coats which suit us much better.
However, Christmas is a time of opportunities. Take the tree. Twinkling balls hang from it - so nice to play with. I enjoy batting them about and if they fall off they move over a wooden floor in a mouse-like fashion. And have you tried climbing it? Right at the top, for some reason, is a particularly bright star. Go for it. Every human in the house will react with a gratifying squeal of excitement as you exhibit your skillful ascent - before the tree crashes to the ground.
Christmas food. Turkey - yum yum. Get to the kitchen early on, while the bird is uncooked. At this point you may get one or two bits cut off to tidy it up for the oven. Even if you don't receive them, note that they have gone into the trashcan. This is usually easily overturned later in the day and you can rummage round for that nice bit of skin taken off the breast area. It's fun to hunt for it. More fun than being given it.
Throughout the morning there will be interesting things on the kitchen surfaces or dining areas. It's no trouble to jump up and take a look to see what is on offer. At various Christmases, I have found the following - bread sauce, ice cream, brandy butter, cream, custard, sausagemeat balls, forcemeat balls (not so good as the sausage meat but worth licking), butter, goose fat, and smoked salmon.
There are hazards. One year I ate the whole of a piece of string used to tie up the turkey which was unwisely left within my range. That was a visit to the vet on Boxing day - very expensive for the human and I didn't appreciate the laxative either (dangerous to pull it out). But my human followed me about attentively and checked the litter tray ceaselessly. The silly woman seemed to want her string back. Can't think why - the turkey flavour would have gone completely. More on Christmas accidents next week and after that cats and their role in the nativity story.
Keep up the Christmas capers - to make those humans properly attentive.
PS. Other cats please let me know of their Christmas experiences and email photos via my website, www.celiahaddon.com
Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.
This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, www.celiahaddon.com This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online VetTechprogramms.org