I first heard about weblogs - from a BBC Online news page article located in the non-real news area where topics of general interest are shoved. Somewhere in that article I'm sure there was a sniffy comment about cats being a predominant subject on many weblog sites intimating that many of the sites were trivial representations of very boring, hardly worth hearing about lives. In the short time I've been involved in both reading, writing and contributing to others' weblogs I've yet to pick up on a single cat reference. And I certainly haven't mentioned cats. Until now.
I have always hated cats. Selfish, unemotional, cupboard loving animals. Neither companionable nor loyal. They don't guard you, or even provide a reason for you to exercise. They snuggle up to you only if they want food or warmth. There are no stories of cats lying on their deceased masters graves pining for their return. They don't forgive once scolded. Scold a cat, and it will hate you for life. They crap all over your garden, chase and kill small birds - for fun - ravage your garden fence and spray abhorrent fluid everywhere. No wonder they are chosen as ideal extensions of their evil owners - from Blofeld's white fluffer to Claw's scraggy, chuckling mog and poor, bald, Mr Bigglesworth. What better pet accessory for evil-doers than a fur-jaggled spitter with only quiet spite in its heart.
But today I have decided that I admire them. It came about during a short country ramble I went on today, fitted in between reading the paper and being nice to various members of my family. As I sauntered through the country at peace with myself, lost in my thoughts, I was struck by the contrast between how differently I was received by the country dwellers pets. Each time I passed a cottage or farm, dogs would hurl themselves at fences, hedges and gates in acts of unbelievable hostility, desperate to sink their canine teeth into my body. Barks ranging from de profundis aggressive to falsetto yap interspersed with growls of hatred and strings of slaver. I am confident some of them wanted to kill me. Perhaps eat me.
The cats though reacted much more civilly. With far greater tolerance. Silently watching me go by either lifting one tired eyelid then closing it realising what most people I know have always known, that I'm not that interesting. Or remaining crouched and vigilant, head following the arc of my movement - then realising, you know, the interest thing. No threat, no fuss, no heart jolting moments or embarrassed increasing of pace required - never ever run from a dog, they think you want to play - goes the old saw. Yeah right, they know you're running for your life and they know they'll always, always catch you.
Cats? Yeah--they're OK. Bring your searches to this site, I'm batting for them right now. I like cats from today. From today onwards, cats are my thing. They may not love, but they respect. Respect to cats. All cats