It’s kind of a mess at my house right now. That’s because one of my cats was in the rag basket last week and I’m still cleaning up the mess.
He’d fought outside—there wasn’t a note with whom—and suffered a wound on his leg that had biblically inflamed with sores and pus. And when I was scrubbing the umpteenth puddle of vomit from my rug on Sunday morning at 7 o’clock, I suddenly thought: there are actually quite a lot of reasons never to get a cat.
Not only because they are merciless sadists who eat millions of birds a year, scratch your furniture or shed hundreds of garbage bags full of hair from April to late September – we already know that. But also because, or wait… I will list all the arguments .
1If you have a cat, you don’t leave the house anymore.
Nothing is as wonderful as sitting on the couch with the door locked with a cat. So if you have a cat, you will never go to parties or on vacation again and you will slowly become socially isolated. And the worst: it feels like the best thing that ever happened to you.
2 If you have a cat, you can forget about your career.
Because with a cat you only want to work at home. It’s a taboo thing to say out loud, but cats are so much cuter than your co-workers. When you look at a sleeping cat, you slowly feel all ambition seeping out of you – a wonderful feeling. You can’t work anyway if you have a cat on your lap. People without cats don’t understand that.
3 Cats are not very clean.
Everyone thinks so, but that’s a myth. Cats’ mouths are a hotbed of bacteria and they lick their entire fur. So when you hug your cat, you give trillions of hostile microorganisms access to your own biosphere.
4 Whatever you buy for them, they always find the box more interesting.
I mean, cats aren’t very smart. They often have smart owners – Albert Einstein, Remco Campert, Japke-d. Bouma – but that’s not the same.
Sure. On Instagram, Netflix and Twitter you see cats jumping through hoops, giving high fives and having whole conversations. But that’s the very small minority that ruins it for the rest.
The average cat still doesn’t know how the cat flap works, gets totally upset by a vacuum cleaner, is shocked by the consumption of a cucumber, forgets to pull in his tongue when he takes a break from washing, half buries his droppings under the sand as if we don’t realize that he has pooped illegally somewhere, and remembers every time it rains and he goes outside that it’s raining and he wants to go back inside.
5 That the Egyptians worshiped cats is also no reason.
They also believed that after death we go on a huge journey that requires gold cups, cutlery, jewelry, trumpets, shoes, statues, fans and huge pyramids built by forced laborers – not really a recommendation, I think.
6If there’s something wrong with your cat, you’re upset.
You get a stomach ache when they feel bad. “I would cancel my own wedding if my cat was sick,” wrote one reader. Well, I’d cancel my own funeral if they didn’t eat for a day. I mean, if your cat is sick, you should be on care leave.
7 Petting cats is a huge job.
Just like watching funny cat videos, taking cat pictures and telling about them. Unfortunately, we live in the crazy time when it is not accepted that you sometimes cannot work a few days a week because of this. I am very sorry
8 Cat owners are nasty people.
Solitary, arrogant types. The longer you have a cat, the worse it gets. I think we have to be honest about the fact that people who have had a cat for more than five years – I’ve had them for seven years now – can’t really return to society.
9A cat doesn’t like you.
They keep you awake, ignore you, even if you’ve been crying on the couch for three hours. When they cup you, they do it to rub their scent trail on you, and when they let out that cute little meow, they want to eat.
Mine sometimes softly bite my finger at night. I always thought that was the height of sweetness, until an expert explained to me that they test whether I am already dead. A cat would kill you if given the chance.
10But the main reason to never get a cat is of course that you can’t do without them after a few months.
That after a long day outside you can’t wait to see their faces again – those faces, those ears, those whiskers, those paws! – cat haters have no idea.
How you melt when they sit in a box that is much too small and then don’t come out. How gracefully they stride through the house. Their madness. That you would give your right hand for their eternal life.
If you’ve ever had a cat, you can never go back to a life without one.
These were the Pearls on Twitter this week
stanvanpelt Stan van Pelt Hopefully an architect knows what to do with these kinds of building requirements, @japked. “By working within the faculty zone with smaller clusters of spaces, based on the functional and substantive relationship of activities, small scale and findability can be guaranteed.” https://t.co/8a4j7movzs
Leon Scheppink Leon Scheppink @japked ‘How was your weekend?’ ‘Mwah, went well, did you?’ ‘Shit, the milk is gone again and that goddamn coffee grounds container is full again’. In general, that is the level of the inspiring conversation at the coffee machine.
A version of this article also appeared in the December 6, 2022 newspaper