Anne Boaden – Contributor
Hey, Mom and Dad! Welcome to my humble abode. Yes, please take off your shoes. Hang your coats here. No, here. Right, are you hungry? Thirsty? Do you want a nap? Yes? Oh, a note of caution. My cats. Yes, you know them. They’re still alive and kicking, even after a long-ass, and expensive, flight to England. A note about my feline companions.
Do not be alarmed if you hear yowling at any time. Particularly at night, right when your head hits the pillow, but really, any time. They’re just playing. They’ve just gone into kitty crackhead mode. They’re just toying with Mr. String or Wonton or Mr. Mousey. They’ll be committing wontonicide by drowning him in their water bowl. Yes, it’s for dogs, but they’re messy cats. And they drown things on a regular basis.
Do not keep your door open. You’ll be in the guest bed, which is the biggest room, but the door needs to be closed twice. Yes, twice. The first time is just superficial. You’ll hear the click the second time. My cats will attempt to come in. They’re kitty-ninjas. Little Cat will jump up and knock the handle down. Big Cat will body slam the door. They’ve perfected this technique. They’ll slink in, look around, and then infiltrate the bed sheets. You won’t know they’re there. You’ll think the covers are just ruffled a bit. You’ll think the duvet is a bit messy. It’ll be cats. Please don’t squish my cats. Also, they’ll make your sheets fuzzy.
Don’t worry about the disgusting noises you’ll hear in the morning. It’s just one or the other of my cats vomiting. It’s not serious. They’re hungry and expelling bile. Or they’ve got hairballs and will retch them up in gross kay-hucking noises. Completely normal. No, those baby wipes aren’t for babies. Best carpet cleaner I’ve found.
Do not mind the shrieking cries of what will sound like dying children around eight o’clock. It’s just, you guessed it, my cats. They think I’m going to starve them. They think all the food in the world has gone. They think I’m a horrible person for not feeding them at five in the morning. If you’re up, they’ll get underfoot. They’ll try to trip you. They’ll wind around your ankles at the top of the stairs. See, they’ll think you should feed them. Let me do it. I promise you it’ll only be for the best.
Do not leave anything on the counters. I mean it. My cats will try to eat anything. They’ve ripped open a pack of steak and wolfed down half my dinner. They’ve used a loaf of bread as a plaything. They’ve licked the eggs I have sitting on the counter. And, of course, once they’ve gotten into food that’s been left out, yep, more vomiting.
Do not wear black. I mean it. You’ll find cat hair on your nice sweater for the next year.
Don’t make any sudden movements when a cat magics herself onto your open lap. They’ve got lap radar, I swear. One minute, you’re merrily watching television with a cup of coffee, the next, you’ve got a purring stomach. It’s completely normal. Just make sure your jeans are thick enough to withstand kitty claws when they’re making biscuits on your groin.
Really, my cats are low maintenance. You’ll hardly know they’re here, I promise. Just adhere to these guidelines and you’ll be golden.
Did I mention we have a dog, too?
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