Cat Wisdom

I have lived with cats all my life, and even so, they do things that baffle me.

When I was married and owned a house, we had a basement which was about 10-15 degrees cooler than the main floor of the house on which we lived, and an attic, which was 10-15 degrees higher than that. During the summer when it got hot, really hot, we would open up the attic door so the hot air had someplace else to go. And up the stairs would go the cats.

It seems instinctual that they seek heat. Back to what do they think all day, and the overwhelming heat that LA has been experiencing, I could not help but notice that during the day, my cat follows the heat.

My unit faces the east, so the sun comes through the windows in the morning. An in the morning, Hamlin goes to the back of the couch and perches in the slat of sunlight that comes through the gap in the curtains. As the sun moves and the day progresses, he moves to under the desk, close to the windows. Later in the day, he moves to the hottest room in my place, the dark cave known as the bedroom. With no windows, only a door and no fans, it traps the heat and holds it there. And there, he falls asleep on the bed, in the warmest spot possible.

I mention this, as it has been so hot I can’t really function during the day, I have been stopping and lying down on my bed whenever I can’t really focus. In the hottest room. And find myself falling asleep. Kind of like the cat.

Is this why the cats go for the heat? To induce them more easily into the drowsy dream-like state that is the majority of their daily existence?

At night, it’s a different story. My cat tries to escape out the front door to the significantly cooler hallway once the sun sets. If he must be inside, he heads for the bathroom, where there is a slight breeze from the open window in the airshaft to the nearby crack under the front door, and he lies on the linoleum, cooling off.

So today, since it has been hot repeatedly many days in a row, it means the apartment hasn’t really cooled down, and just remains stagnantly hot. So I took my cue, and got low. Low to the ground, and with a fan, a nice gentle breeze, and spread out blanket, pillows and bedding for a comfy floor perch, put my computer on top of my printer, and lounged to my heart’s content, watching streaming video of all the TV shows I missed Thursday night. For some reason, all the competing networks decided to show their best shows on Thursday, thus taking eyeballs away from their competitors. But not so with the power of the internet, the devoted fans can catch up regardless of whether they are home or not.

Do the Neilsens take into consideration DVRs and online viewing to determine the percentage of audiences? And why can’t we just get free streaming video of the shows simulcast while live on air? Same commercials, same time, the advertisers still pay for their airtime and still get eyeballs glued to their product endorsements? And no TV needed. Because some of the shows I like watching don’t do online video, and I just have to wait until they come out on DVDs, the next season. And that, for the instant access obsessed computer generation, is just not fast enough. And irritating.

Anyway, I had an enjoyable day catching up on my shows, and I think following my cat’s lead is not such a bad idea. The floor with bedding materials is a lot more comfortable than my desk chair. I feel like I am nesting in the middle of my own living room. But comfortable.

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