aNewDomain — If you have a cat, you may have already lost homework, blog posts and food to your furry little friend. Last week I lost an article — well, I thought I had lost an article. Four paws clicked away my review of “The Martian,” and now I realize how necessary a “cat ate my homework” post is.
So, yes, I love my cat, Greta, but she is diabolical. And although her gene makeup is Heinz 57, she is a 100 percent purebred narcissist. Just look her.
The best excuse for lost homework these days is definitely, “My cat deleted it.” Most everyone types up homework (or any other sort of work) on a computer. Make sure to save frequently, just in case your little rat — er, uh, cat (blame my editor) — decides to lay across your keyboard for warmth.
My dog never ate my homework. When I was in school that excuse didn’t work for two reasons. First, I was excellent at doing homework. In Atlanta you used to get free tickets to Braves games for straight “A’s.” (Believe it or not, the Braves still reward student achievers with free tickets.) The second reason: My dog, Duke (pictured below), would never have munched my homework. Even if it was shaped or flavored like a milk bone.
Dogs are reliable and trustworthy, so what sort of dog would eat your homework?
Cats are an entirely different subject. For instance, have you ever seen a police cat? No. They’re terrible at taking commands, have small noses that smell a fraction of what a dog snout can detect and are the definition of untrustworthy. Not key qualities in a service animal for police.
You can sick a dog on someone — for a cat to bite or take orders, it has to be the cat’s idea.
My cat deleted my article
Earlier this week, Greta deleted my aNewDomain article “The Martian.” I know I’m not the only cat owner that has fallen victim to inconsiderate paws.
She looks innocent enough, but don’t be fooled. If I ignore “meows” of hunger, there is hell to pay. She’s like a gunman with an itchy trigger finger.
Okay, itchy trigger paws. All four of them.
Now some of you may think my cat considers herself an editor. The post she made disappear was my review of “The Martian” — but she’s a major Matt Damon fan. I guess I didn’t talk that much about Damon — mostly my article was filled with awesome science that NASA is conducting.
Greta had asked me to take her to the screening, but neither the SAG-AFTRA Film Society nor the Directors Guild of America theaters allow members to bring pets to screenings. (Service dogs are an exception. And only dogs and miniature horses qualify as service animals.) I’m considering registering Greta as an emotional support animal to see if the DGA will let her attend screenings. But it’s a longshot.
Greta’s act of sabotage was hardly supportive. Of course, she did “meow” in my face for at least 10 minutes before she struck. Now I realize that ignored meows mean: “I am hungry. Damn it! I am ravenous. Last warning, Human. Okay, you leave me no choice — I will walk across your keyboard until you feed me.”
Cats on a rampage
I’m not the only one who has lost documents due to a cat. Blogpaws described this crime, and warned cat owners to backup their data. They recommended a backup website called SurDoc that offers 100GB of free storage. It might not make your computer catproof, but it will help you protect your data.
When Greta pawed at my iMac screen and walked across my keyboard several times, I wasn’t worried because I had saved my blogpost in WordPress.
But I had failed to exit WordPress. And when I returned to my computer, my rough draft of my review looked like this. I hit Undo about 50 times — but couldn’t undo this.
I decided to make a video about the event — to warn others, of course. See the “Destructo Cat” video below.
Later I discovered that my draft was actually saved in WordPress, and the gobbledy-gook text was her own post. She’s a writer, not an editor.
I haven’t told Greta yet that her post of random keystrokes won’t be running. I deleted it, but I’ll blame my editors. If she suspects I did it, who knows where her paws might strike next?
All other images and video by: Terry Gardner, All Rights Reserved.