In this week’s column, Ian Morris begins to doubt the wisdom of appointing Sir Arthur Kitten Doyle to a senior role in the Morris household’s working-from-home office.
Who do you complain to if the Director of Human Resources is being a tosser?
For clarity, I am referring to Sir Arthur Kitten Doyle. As regular readers may remember during lockdown there was the odd dispute between myself and one of my co-workers in the home office over working conditions, and we agreed to appoint Sir Arthur to arbitrate. This may have been one of the first indicators that neither of us were dealing with lockdown particularly well.
On reflection, I am starting to doubt the wisdom of appointing a cat to this pivotal role. Since his appointment, there have been changes in his general behaviour and I am not comfortable with some of them at all.
Take the French doors next to my desk, for example. As summer has rapidly slipped into autumn these are not now open from dawn till dusk. I realise I have to leap up and open them for Millsey to come and go but Sir Arthur thinks he should be afforded the same privileges.
Tap, tap ,tap, tap, we hear, followed by a more frantic version and a piercing MIAOUWWWW!
Any attempt to ignore this is futile as his ability to annoy you will outlast your ability to ignore him. What makes this phenomena yet more irritating is that three feet away is the kitchen window, wide open, with a garden chair propped against the wall so the poor boy doesn’t have to make one big leap. His sister manages to bounce in and out all day, but Sir Entitled needs a butler to open and close the door.
Then there are the noises and the physics experiments.
Sir Arthur isn’t a dainty cat. ‘Has he got down?” is the ironic question often asked in our house. If you imagine the noise a bowling ball makes as it is dropped onto the lane in a ten pin bowling alley, that is the noise Sir Arthur makes when he gets down from anywhere, even onto carpet.
The physics experiments he likes to undertake usually involve pushing things off of elevated surfaces, watching them fall and then peering at their fallen nature. He expanded this into fluid dynamics, so now we all carry water bottles in our own house as an unattended glass of water is the perfect invite for experimentation.
Don’t get me wrong, though, he has a sweet side. Only a couple of days ago he came and joined me at my desk and insisted on a cuddle and let out a bass purr that made everything shake. He then followed me up to bed and snuggled up continuing to show his delight in purring form. I relayed to Nicky how sweet and nice he had been and she asserted this was just how he is and I don’t give him enough credit for his niceness.
But as I type, it has been a broken night. At approximately 3.53 this morning I was awoken when a cat the size and weight of a bowling ball landed on me, having leapt from the bedroom windowsill.
I wrapped the duvet round me tighter and felt Sir Arthur perched on my shoulder peering down at my head. He wasn’t convinced I was asleep, so checked by repeatedly thrusting a paw into my ear. Rather than binning him I thought I would show goodwill and give him a stroke, remembering the warm cuddly cat of a couple of nights earlier.
But after untangling my arms and reaching out, he promptly sodded off, crossing the bed to my sleeping wife. Moving with the lightness of a hummingbird, he gently climbed over her so she didn’t stir and hunkered down, purring like a chainsaw. I am not certain but I swear the message was ‘I am cuddling your wife, you are wide awake, haha.’
This is not appropriate behaviour for an HR professional. I shall be convening a meeting of the workers this morning to oust the git…
Image courtesy of Ian Morris.