Deep thought of the night

A moment of calm.

You know that scene in ET where ET has just been brought to the kid’s room, and he’s totally confused by earth and so he flails around everywhere, making a huge mess and being incredibly loud and setting off that weird 80s chattering teeth toy?

That’s pretty much what having cats is like.

Author: has written 5299 posts for this blog.

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
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19 Responses

  1. Lauren
    Lauren January 28, 2009 at 12:31 am |

    Yes. Yes, it is.

    Except once they get older they mostly lay around like beached seals or The Blob while you work your ass off to clean their ammonia-filled litter boxes and keep their kibble stocked. Then they lay on you and breathe on your face while you’re trying to sleep, or decide that prime play time occurs at 3am. Or claw your limbs off while you try to “play.”

    Cats are awesome.

  2. Angela
    Angela January 28, 2009 at 1:13 am |

    Or not.

    Mine hold their noses up and won’t eat because their dishes weren’t properly cleaned. My little darlings (grrr) hate tap water and will only drink Dasani.

  3. Jenn
    Jenn January 28, 2009 at 1:33 am |

    HA! I had to chime in because at the exact moment I was reading this post, my cat starting tearing around the house at 100 miles an hour like she’s possessed. She stopped long enough to scratch the chair she knows she’s not supposed to scratch and then looked at me as if to say, “whatcha gonna do about it?” before tearing off into the other room again. But I know I will forgive her when I climb into bed and she comes and lays down next to my pillow and keeps me from falling asleep because she purrs so damn loud. I never thought I’d be ‘a cat lady’…

  4. RacyT
    RacyT January 28, 2009 at 3:03 am |

    One of mine just crawled into an enclosed space and made a big production of crawling around, clawing, meowling and generally being a pain in the ass because I dared leave for a few hours. She’s getting spayed on Friday, so hopefully the tearing around the house a 3am will slow down after that. At least she’s stopped climbing my blinds.

    The old one is sleeping, until the kitten gets him up to run around two hours before my alarm goes off.

    And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  5. RacyT
    RacyT January 28, 2009 at 3:04 am |

    Also, Jenn: You’re not a ‘cat lady’ until you have more than two. I swear this is written down somewhere important.

  6. Ishtar
    Ishtar January 28, 2009 at 5:28 am |


    “…my cat starting tearing around the house at 100 miles an hour like she’s possessed. She stopped long enough to scratch the chair she knows she’s not supposed to scratch and then looked at me as if to say, “whatcha gonna do about it?” before tearing off into the other room again.”

    I think my cat might’ve been distantly related to yours because she would do exactly the same thing. I’d crack up whenever she gave me that look.

    Before she developed a delicate tummy in her old age, one of her favourite games was for us to wrestle on the bed. I’d throw her up in the air and she’d land on the bed with a “woof” and a throaty kitteh chuckle. When the game was over she’d flop down next to me with a “that was fun!” look on her face and we’d have a good cuddle. I miss the little brat.

  7. Lauren
    Lauren January 28, 2009 at 9:03 am |

    Also, Jenn: You’re not a ‘cat lady’ until you have more than two. I swear this is written down somewhere important.

    Oh GREAT.

  8. Neue Internetprasenz
    Neue Internetprasenz January 28, 2009 at 9:16 am |

    Oh great, indeed.

  9. Elisabeth
    Elisabeth January 28, 2009 at 10:18 am |

    *laughs* Truer words have never been written.

    They’re awful little creatures. Sometimes I wonder why we love them so much. I think it’s those big, beautiful eyes.

    (My cat’s favorite game is artful vomiting. He likes to see how many levels he can hit – why vomit on just the floor when he can vomit on the cabinet, the step ladder AND the floor in one go? And I’m not even exaggerating.)

  10. William
    William January 28, 2009 at 10:31 am |

    Ahh, but when ET freaked out he never tried to pounce onto the bed, realized he’d landed on a head, and then pounce off, leaving one of the kids with a bloody slash pattern on their neck and face reminiscent of a Tijuana knife fight’s aftermath. Thats what my charming little darling did a couple of weeks ago.

  11. ACG
    ACG January 28, 2009 at 10:42 am |

    My little darlings (grrr) hate tap water and will only drink Dasani.

    My stepcat Harvey doesn’t drink anything but tap water – straight from the tap, at a certain rate of trickle. We spent $90 on a recirculating waterfall kitty fountain so we wouldn’t be running the tap all day, and he couldn’t care less. It has to be in the sink, preferably in the downstairs bathroom, and if you happen to be on the can at the time he makes his demand, you’re still obliged to get that tap going post-haste or suffer his wrath.

  12. Intransigentia
    Intransigentia January 28, 2009 at 1:29 pm |

    re. 3AM growling squeaking running up and down the walls like Trinity in The Matrix – if you think spaying is going to help, my experience with my 10-year-old cat is, no. She does it less over the last couple years, but certainly hasn’t stopped.

    On the bright side, I have finally found an actual use for kitties. When you’re wanting to cut out fabric and they want to roll all over the crinkly tissue paper pattern , if you have time, let them do it to their hearts’ content. They will make the paper so staticky you’ll barely need pins to keep it in place on the fabric.

  13. AshKW
    AshKW January 28, 2009 at 4:04 pm |

    Well, my kitten, at eight months, certainly fits the bill. To make matters worse, she’s Siamese. We have to hide the tall kitchen trash can in the closet at night, or she knocks it over and delights in destroying everything in sight.

    She also chews on Kleenex, drags my used tampon applicators around the house and uses them as chew toys, and enjoys nothing quite so much as climbing up my very nice blackout curtains in the bedroom, only to let out a blood-curdling meow at 3 a.m. because she feels she needs attention.

    The other three (yes, I have four cats, and yes, I know I’m a crazy cat lady) are fortunately a bit older and more mature, at two years old at minimum. But that doesn’t stop Casanova from helping her in her “trash fishing” escapades. *Sigh* I keep telling my kitten it’s a good thing she’s so frigging adorable…

  14. RacyT
    RacyT January 29, 2009 at 2:31 am |

    Oh Lauren… just kidding. You need to know also that “cat lady” and “crazy” do not necessarily belong together. I think “crazy cat lady” actually starts sometime around where you have six litter boxes or something. You don’t really have to go around pitching cats like the lady on the Simpsons… ;-D

  15. Ishtar
    Ishtar January 29, 2009 at 2:37 am |


    I’d forgotten about the vomiting.

    My cat would lurch around, vomiting over everything, with me following in distress and wailing “No no! Not there! Get away from the bed!”. Once she was done she’d look up at me for a few seconds with a “Did you say something?” expression and then wander off as if nothing had happened. Though she’d return a few moments later to watch with great interest as I cleaned up her mess.

  16. Harrison
    Harrison January 29, 2009 at 3:26 am |

    Having been owned by two cats for the better part of 15 years, I can say that they bounce between utterly bat— insane and adorable, loving and mellow. Our female is currently sleeping on her bed–one of them–as I write this, curled up with her head resting on her tail. The cuteness rays are shooting out of her and bouncing all over the room. When she’s not asleep she likes to play games like, Let’s Stand In The Middle Of The Room And Yowl For No Apparent Reason, Let’s Just Hang Out On The Couch While Mom and Dad Watch TV, Let’s Run From Room To Room at 800 Miles Per Hour, Stopping Only To Stare Fixedly At Mom And Dad Like They Grew Extra Arms and Let’s Jump On The Nearest Lap, Purr Like Mad And Demand Attention.

    Our male is big and stupid and utterly sweet. He sleeps most of the time, preferably snuggled up with me or my wife. Our vet said at one point, “As they get older, they’ll sleep more.” Our reaction was, “More than what?” During his infrequent waking hours, he likes to claim laps, purr and lick faces.

    And that was way more than anyone wanted to know. We are obviously crazy about these little Martians.

  17. atalised
    atalised January 29, 2009 at 4:33 am |

    i’m at work. i miss my cats.

  18. Bach-us
    Bach-us January 29, 2009 at 10:12 am |

    My one cat likes to play with used q-tips. One time my mother had her hearing aids out and he picked one of them up and carried it around in his mouth. I guess it smelled like “toy” to him.

    My other cat is sweet and cuddly, but he likes to be held like a baby. Right away when I get home. Until my arms get tired (he weighs 20 pounds). And then some more.

    I love them beyond all reason or understanding.

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