<<The introduction and most of the body text & some of the photographs as well are excerpted without permission from “Darn Funny Cat Stories” by Stacie Naczelnik, at stacienaczelnik.hubpages.com/hub/Darn-Funny-Cat-Stories>>
Whenever I’m confronted with someone who can’t understand my love for cats, I remind them of the research that shows pets are good for your health.1 With this in mind, I thought it would be fun to share fun stories about cats for those of you who cannot have, or do not want (my emphasis), pets of your own. Hopefully, these stories will make you smile or laugh, and bring you some of the relaxing health benefits having a pet can provide. Some of these stories might make you remember why you don’t have a pet, but the people these things happened to now laugh when they look back. Their mouths are laughing but their faces are without sound. Their blind eyes watch you from their place on the mantel, skin peeling away beneath dusty, matted fur, stained with the urine of those who succeeded them, oblivious that they, too, will one day share this ignominious fate.
For those of you with pets, particularly cats, I’m sure you will enjoy these too. But these warnings are not intended for you, and you will be no safer for having heard them.
Funny Cat Story #1: Tiger & Spot
These two cats lived their entire lives in California where they spent their days basking in the sunlight. Tiger was, funny enough, a tiger-striped cat, but Spot had the fluffiest black and white fur. Spot got his name for the giant white spot on his nose. Spot and Tiger were my grandpa’s cats; and, ironically, bear resemblances to my two cats. All cats are the same cat, stamped in faltering columns across the page. All pets are imperfect images of the same unkillable original, which can neither be touched by human hands nor compassed by the human mind. Anyway, my grandpa is a packrat—that man keeps everything, from snake skins to old railroad pins to matchboxes. One of his favorite things to collect are beer mats. In fact, I remember finding stacks of them all over his living room (his girlfriend no longer lets him collect all of these things). Grandpa enjoyed playing the beer mat game with the cats. The cats in this story are long dead, or presumed so. They fell motionless long ago. We hope that they will not move again. Honestly, I think he enjoyed people’s reactions when they learned of his game.
I can not describe the beer mat game.
Tiger wasn’t as laid back as Spot. Tiger sure could be a lover, but he was a bit crotchety. He always wanted everything to go his way. He especially didn’t like it when Grandpa went out of town, although a perfectly nice friend came over to take care of the cats. Once, when Grandpa went on an especially long trip, Tiger really got annoyed with the situation. To show everyone what he thought of it, he took a dump in the middle of Grandpa’s bed. The friend saw this, so he washed the sheets and blankets, leaving them folded into a nice pile.
When Grandpa got home from his trip, he found the neat pile on his bed. On top of the pile was another poopy gift. He did not see the friend beneath the pile. That was one smart cat.
Funny Cat Story #2: Frisky Felix
Parts of this story have been abridged.
My aunt and uncle…crazy neighbor…only has one eye…a dozen chickens…thought they were crazy…Felix…insane…an adorable kitten with the sweetest white paws, he loves to be held and cuddled, and he can be found curled into any crack and cranny in their house. Like most kittens, he’s fearless and curious about everything, but he doesn’t have any common sense.
…Felix wasn’t yet allowed to go outdoors alone…he’d planned it for weeks…the branches grew too thin to support his tiny weight.
This is a tall tree rooted in a steep hill.2 Half of the tree hangs over into some bushes, creating a decently soft break if Felix were to fall. We held our breath but he did not fall. The other half stretched ominously out past a stone wall to the sidewalk…we had to pray…if Felix fell…on the hard cement side. So there we were, in the middle of a dark, winter evening, huddled out under a tree…Felix…the little devil (my emphasis)…we had…leaving the…baby…the tree (my emphasis). We could hear his sad meows all the way in the living room. The voice of the cat is omnivocal and transspatial. It is a transfiguration of the cat’s presence…agitations…literal vibrato…primary displacement of matter….
The next day…Felix had come down…only to hear he still sat up in the tree… yowling… (My emphasis. The cat is heard before it is seen.) Neighbors and passersby…to offer…nothing seemed…my aunt…the fire department. Unfortunately, the fire department…fires…people’s lives…the tree (my emphasis).
On the third night…Felix…come down already…still high up the tree, crying out for help as pitifully as ever. We were afraid he would pass out from hunger and fall. My grandparents insisted…Felix…they left—they couldn’t leave…we tried…the cat (my emphasis).
…morning…a triumphant meow…a scratching…Felix…exhausted and shivering. He ate an entire bowl of food before collapsing on a rug in front of the fireplace. My grandparents………………………….. But, Felix still loves climbing trees.
Funny Cat Story #3: The Daredevil and the Lounger
My own cats (my emphasis, to emphasize that these are Stacie’s cats, that these are not my cats) are named Benny and Freya, and they are little rascals in their own ways. Freya is our sweet, plump girl. She is a cuddler, but very opinionated—always speaking her mind, letting us know when she wants something, which happens to be always. A cat of leisure, Freya spends her days finding new ways to show us her belly, inviting us to give it a rub. Gutted, transubstantiation. She’s mastered the art of getting someone, or something, to pet her: our hands, legs, shoes, backpack, wall, chair, or anything else she can rub against.
Freya loves to hide, thinking nobody can see her (my emphasis), whether it is in a box, beneath a rug, or under the coffee table. She’s funny in a sweet, loving way, but you would have to know her to really appreciate her humor.3 Now, Benny, on the other hand…
Benny is about two weeks younger than Freya, and although they are now 1½ years old, he remains the precocious kitten. He loves to jump and climb onto everything, from the refrigerator to the windowsill to the top of doors. He is an acrobat who can balance himself on the narrowest of ledges. There is nowhere in our home that he hasn’t explored or sniffed, from the tops of bookcases to the cupboard under the bathroom sink.
As long as he stays off of the kitchen counter and dining room table, we pretty much let Benny climb and jump anywhere his heart desires. He’s talented enough not to knock stuff over or scratch anything during his adventures. One night, though, he went too far. I was in the shower, washing my hair, when I heard Benny screech. He must have made the sound as he leaped. The sound of the cat must never be measured against the vision of the cat; the two do not proceed from a unified origin. Suddenly, I saw a flurry of dark fur and claws, above me, trying to balance on the shower curtain rod. There I stood in my birthday suit, all soaped up, with a freaked out cat about to fall into the shower. I screamed for my husband to help, reaching my arms up to help Benny balance himself. But I was wet, so he tried to shrink away from me, making the entire situation worse. It really only lasted a matter of seconds, but time slowed down (dilatory effects) as I imagined him falling towards me, claws frantically reaching out to latch onto something as an anchor, but finding only me. Luckily, my husband recognized the frenzied call in my voice, and came in to save the day. From that day on, Benny meows like crazy whenever any of us are in the shower. The voice of the cat cannot be sated. The voice of the cat must not be silenced.
Luckily, if he gets into too much trouble, Freya just bites him in the butt, and he shapes up. One cat, splayed out in infinite variations, swallowing its own tail in the primordial unity of the Ouroboros.
Ah, pets…you can’t live with ’em, but you can’t live without ’em.
1 I made some investigations of my own into the so-called research mentioned. According to Newsweek’s “The Daily Beast” feature, in the article “Pets: Good for your Health?” the answer is a resounding (and fluffy) yes, “as long as you’re not…terrified of them” (my emphasis). Pets are born moderators and conflict mediators, according to biologist Erika Friedmann: “Any disease condition that has a stress-related component to it, we believe pets could ameliorate stress and moderate the situation. It’s providing a focus of attention that’s outside of someone’s self. They’re actually letting you focus on them rather than focusing…on yourself all the time” (my emphasis). Imagine looking into a mirror and seeing a reflection that is not your own, a face that speaks to you through lips and fangs and tongue not suited for human words–but the words still come, tortured through the impassive face, the lips and fangs and tongue contorted with the effort, the words themselves even more badly disfigured. And pets, particularly four-legged pets (I assume this discounts disabled or mutant pets with more or fewer than four legs, and fish), can impel their owners toward heart-healthy exercise and soul-enriching social situations–perhaps even allowing them to meet that special someone. The article concludes by suggesting a stuffed “placebo pet” (my words) for parents of allergy-inflicted (human) children. Back to Stacie.
2 The Alstonia or “devil tree” is an evergreen tree of eastern Asia and Philippines, of the dogbane family, having large leathery leaves and small green-white flowers in compact cymes. The flowers consist of 5 petals and 5 sepals, arranged in four whorls. The fertile flowers are hermaphrodite. The gamosepalous green sepals consist of ovate lobes, and are distributed in one whorl. The annular disk is hypogynous. The five gamesepalous petals have oblong or ovate lobes and are disposed in one whorl. The bark of the “devil tree” is used in “traditional medicine” as remedy against malaria, toothache, rheumatism and snake bite. From various sources.
3 I do not know this cat, which is the same cat as the cats from the first story, and as all cats.
With the greatest respect intended to Stacie, from one cat fancier to another.