The Insidious Magic of Cats

I don't have a cat. My neighbour does. She has three of them.

One of them, Emma (a boy), doesn't always like it in their home. Back when we moved here he was being bullied by one of the other cats, and would rather stay in our house during the days. Even though our children man-handled him more than he liked.

He's an arrogant little prick. Not the cuddly kind, usually. For years he just walked away whenever anyone tried to pet him. Not scared or worried, just disinterested.

But back to the fact that he stays in our house. He never asked permission, you know. He just walked in as if he owned the place. For our first summer here we'd find him inside all the time. As soon as he found an open door he'd waltz in.

Our neighbour is quite happy about him having a safe haven from the other cats. When he was bullied so much that he wasn't even left alone to eat in peace she gave us cat food to give him. Nowadays we just buy our own. I don't know if he ever eats there any more, but he surely eats at our house every single day.

We are all unable to withstand his demands (me the most of all). Out of cat food? Well, he says, I know you have shrimps in the freezer. Just thaw them and peel them for me! How hard can it be, human? A closed door in the house? What are you hiding from me, humans? Open this door immediately so that I may have a look inside and then go somewhere else!

I'm smitten. I think we all are. Brainwashed. The boys have learned to be more gentle with him, and Emma has decided that there is one human he likes more than others in our house (his house, as far as he's concerned). My daughter. She's sometimes allowed to carry him around. She's allowed to cuddle him whenever. He often sleeps in her bed when she's in school.

So not fair.

But we all love him. How? He takes us completely for granted, and yet we are his willing slaves. What is this magical power cats have over us?

-- CC0 Björn Wärmedal