hamsters are friends, not food

Tomorrow is definitely one of the stranger holidays on the list. And many are very strange. Tomorrow, invented by some person somewhere, we celebrate National Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day. So in honor of my three cats, I have prepared answers to the questions I suspect they will pose to me on this day. For instance:

Merry: Why is there a hamster in this house if I cannot eat him?

Humans are strange. Some rodents we positively encourage you to hunt and scarf down, so long as you refrain from leaving their heads as offerings on our pillows. Other rodents we actually like and keep in cages and feed and pet. There appears to be little difference between them, except for the no tail issue, but you would do well to leave the hamster cage where it is on the laundry room counter. The humans do feed you. Hamsters are friends, not food.

Thespian: Why is that other four-footed furry creature here?

Dogs are man’s best friend. Well, actually I prefer you cats. But don’t tell the dog that. She is sweet and old and far more scared of you than you ever have been of her. Please practice live and let live detente.

Pippin: And what’s up with that stupid rabbit? Why can’t I get in and go after him?

Because that rabbit could kick your butt. Literally. This is for your own good. Trust me. Trust is not something that comes naturally to cats. But attacking that rabbit would be like Taiwan declaring war on China. Sure, you will inflict a few wounds, but your’re toast in the end.

Merry: Why did you get that kitten?

Well, we didn’t. She invaded. I know–ever since, she’s been invading your private lap space, bed space, and leave-me-alone-you-stupid-cat space. But you were young once too. It’s probably payback.

Merry: Why can’t we go outside like all the other cats?

Because, contrary to your inflated sense of self, you cannot take on a coyote. I don’t care what Fluffy’s mother does. I’m your mother.

Pippin: Why can’t I have more food?

Because you’re obese. Like people, obese cats have shorter lives and are prone to all kinds of illness. I didn’t make you eat your way to that belly that sways under you like a 56-year-old guy in a Speedo. Don’t whine to me because I care about you. And no, you can’t eat the dog food.

Merry: What is the meaning of life?

Get people to give you all you want simply because you’re cute. It works similarly in humans, I hear, if you’re young and (usually) blonde.

Thespian: Why can’t I ever catch that squirrel?

I realize that in cat world, glass doesn’t exist. But in people world, it separates you from that teasing squirrel two inches from your face. This teaches you to deal with life’s frustrations. Advertised jobs that were never truly ‘open’ and professors who psychologically cannot give out perfect scores serve the same general purpose for humans. You’ll never get that squirrel. Feel lucky. Feel very lucky.

Pippin: Why does Merry always win even though I outweigh him big time?

Um, how to put this diplomatically? You’re just, intellectually challenged, Pip. You’re the offensive guard, and Merry’s the quarterback. You may be able to squash him, but he’ll always call the plays. You’re Dwayne Johnson; he’s Johnny Depp. You’re a bulldozer and he’s a contractor. You’re both needed in life, but he’s always going to make the bigger bucks. Sorry. All of us must learn to accept our lot in life. If it helps, you’re a really sweet offensive guard.

Everyone: Why do you not understand I am to be the center of your attention?

Stand in line guys. Take a number. There are a lot more who seem to feel that way, too.


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