Caturday: Cardboard Box Edition

His Holiness Saint Ray The Cat leads a life of both excitement and boredom. He and I now have a morning routine of stepping outside to take the air. I contemplate life, catch up on social media and the like, and he wanders around eating grass and sniffing things (catching up on social media and the like). Then we go back inside, and he either begs for catnip, or goes to sleep. I want to be clear – he does not get catnip when he begs. I can’t get around giving him food when he’s been howling for the hour before feeding time, but I’ll be damned if I train my cat to expect drugs as a reward for tapping on my elbow every two minutes.

Anyway, one of my innovations for keeping him entertained during the day, is a length of candle wick hanging from my study door’s handle. It originally had a cork tied to the end, but after that was rabbit-kicked away, we both discovered that he loves just a bit of string with a knot at the end. Finally, after all these years, I found a toy that he’ll play with by himself.

In many ways, His Holiness is a perfect cat for us. He’s extremely tolerant of everything we do, to the point where we joke about him being aware of our harassment as the price for being saved from starvation on the street. He loves cuddling, has few objections to being picked up and snuggled, and the most objection I get to trimming his claws is that he shifts his weight so that he could roll off my lap if I let him.

My one complaint – and that’s too strong of a word for it – is that he doesn’t sit in things very much. I’ve tried to get him to hang out in a box next to me and stuff, but he prefers a more luxurious environment. He tends to hang out on the bed, or the couch, or in laundry. He’ll hang out on my lap sometimes, and on the rug by the heater next to me when the heat is on, but boxes, bags, and things of that nature are primarily ways for him to make noise when he wants our attention.

I recently had a package delivered, and on a whim, I decided to put a little catnip in the empty box. It was a given that he would be in the box until he’d consumed all of it, but he decided to just… hang out, afterwards.

His Holiness is a British Shorthair of solid build, with gray-black brindled fur on his back, sides, head, and tail. His legs, belly, and throat are snowy white, and plush-soft. His face and muzzle form triangle of white fur that peaks on his forehead, and crosses his cheeks, blending with the throat fur. In this picture, he’s on his side, partly curled in a cardboard box, and looking up at the camera, with his face slightly smushed on one side by the box.

This was, as you can see, extremely cute. I had put the box between the legs of a chair , which held the sides up so they didn’t bend out when subjected to his bulk. I think he likes the way the box holds him. Naturally, I had to grab his string.

His Holiness is curled rather like the Golden Spiral, as he attempts to catch the blurred string between his mitten-like paws.

One thing he likes to do with the string (and if I get enough *⇒patrons⇐* I’ll post a video of it), is to grab the knot at the end between his tiny little front teeth, and pull. If there’s not enough tension, he’ll step on the string. I have no idea why he does this, but I’m guessing it has something to do with the developmental weirdness of his canines.

His Holiness is the bane of all that moves within easy reach of wherever he happens to be sitting. Playing with him usually takes more effort from me than he’s willing to expend. He’s often content to just watch something, rather than chase or pounce on it, unless it’s actually in his face. In this picture he’s got a fragile grip on the string between his paw, right in front of his snoot.

I played with him till he stopped reacting to the string bumping against his face, and he apparently decided that he was in a great place for his midday nap.

Eventually, His Holiness got tired, so he curled up and just went to sleep in the box. He spent most of the rest of the day there.

He ended up spending most of the rest of the day there, and I was hopeful that this would become a regular thing, but since then it seems that he’s only really going to interact with the box when he’s either begging for catnip, or has just been given some. As I mentioned earlier, I’m not willing to train him to harass me for drugs, so box time will probably end up being an infrequent occurrence. Regardless, I’m glad I got these pictures to share with all of you.

If you want to help me keep this ravenous beast fed, you can become a patron for less than four pennies a day. Because of my immigration status in Ireland, I’m prohibited from normal work, so this is my only income for the next few years, and I’d like to have it be my main source of income after that. If you think this blog’s contents are worth a dollar per month (or more – more is definitely OK), consider helping cover the costs so I can keep doing this. Crowdfunding takes a crowd, so I really do mean it when I say that I want more patrons in the $1-$5 range. If you can’t afford that, share my posts if you like them, and thanks for reading either way!

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