Boy, how I have missed cat-wisdom in my life. Because, regardless of the fact that they tend to sleep a solid 18 hours a day, preferably perched somewhere that they’re not supposed to, cats (to me) have always been a source of inspiration and lifehacks. But now that I find myself in a cat-inhabited house again every now and then, the wisdom is already pouring over my parched smart-pores again.
Today’s lesson? Boobytraps. Or, since the cat in question is named Bibi – Bibitraps.
You see – Bibi, in all her cuteness, has a preference for lounging on the stairs in this house. More specifically: Bibi likes to lounge on the topmost step of these stairs. Stairs that have a dark blue carpet on them, which perfectly camouflages her darkbrownandblack spottiness in the shadow of the top of the stairs. Plus, since she’s not a large cat, she’s barely even visible when you’re on the landing altogether. Can you guess how much of a risk this might be?
Yep. You WILL find yourself attempting to walk up, or worse, down these stairs, only to find yourself almost stepping on an adorable little fluffbal snoring the day away there. Luckily – it’s exactly that snoring that might avoid me losing my life in the time to come. You’ll HEAR her lying there, if you’re paying attention. Unless you’re not paying attention and might well find yourself tumbling down a few steps in a panicked attempt to not-squish said kitty.
Now, the wisdom to be found here is NOT that you need to keep your eyes and ears open to spot snoozing felines (although I still recommend doing so, when in a cat-home). It’s not even that unsuspecting surfaces might contain deadly critters. Nope. The wisdom here is catshaped boobytraps and their resemblance to life and adversity as a whole.
This works in multiple ways.
We all might find ourselves, at one point in our life, spotting something that can be considered a boobytrap. Something that poses a risk to you, your body or your existence when triggered. This boobytrap could be a health problem you keep ignoring, or that one colleague who has it out for you. It could be a paper due in three months that you always postpone till next week or that balloon payment on a credit card you keep putting off to buy new shoes. Fact of the matter is, oftentimes we have no problem identifying AND avoiding these hazards when we spot them, yet actively choose to step around them instead of do something about them. With all the risks that come with that choice.
Which is fine. I know how mean it feels to remove a kitty from their snooze spot. They have a talent for looking so offended when you do. My heart breaks every time. Life is much the same. Conflict sucks. Solving issues is hard. Working on things is a bore. But if you step around these boobytraps, they will usually remain in place. Lurking there, waiting for you to step on them. And that’s where the real danger lies.
Because there WILL come a time that you become complacent. Or forgetful. Distracted or just set on self-sabotage and you WILL find yourself stumbling over said boobytrap, triggering an explosion and wreaking havoc on your own body, mental health or entire life even though you KNEW it was there. SAW it beforehand. ACKNOWLEDGED its existence and ACCEPTED its presence in your life. But did nothing about it when you still had the chance.
Luckily, with cats, these types of boobytraps are quite easy to dismantle. Usually. You either shoo the hidden beasty (possibly risking a few angry clawmarks) or offer them a better place to sleep their day away. Well. You can try, at least. Because the pillow I offered Bibi as a better alternative to the top step is currently occupied by her little brother, while the missus in question huffed and puffed her way downstairs and outside, appalled by my suggestion.
No matter, because at least she’s no longer on the stairs as my impending doom for neck-breakage. And it is much the same for the things you might face in life. You CAN do something about a lot of things BEFORE they actually become a problem. You can defuse a boobytrap before it explodes. You just gotta work on a solution, instead of just avoiding stepping on those cute lil’ toebeaned toes!