Cat’s meow: ‘thank you, I love you too!’

I’m a “cat person.” Always been as far back as I can remember. Grew up with the felines rubbing up against the legs, “meowing” their concerns for the next meal or a friendly pat on the head and neck.

They’d submit to you if they trusted you. Roll onto their backs and expose their vulnerable underbelly. Couldn’t help but give it rub and then ruffle the hair on the back of their little heads.

There’s nothing  like a cat shutting its eyes awaiting the hand sweeping the entire length of its back, anticipating the mellow feeling one must get by such a human massage. Oh, yes. I forgot. The purr.

Had to give away a pure white cat. Part of a litter and was among the last ones “adopted” by friends. He’d climb into bed well before time to wake-up, and walk on my hair. That’s right. He’d sit on my head and play with my hair, batting the pieces of hair that lay messed up and flat across the pillow. I got dark brown hair. (Well, used to have that color. Now it’s a mix of gray and brown, but still full except for that small Friar Tuck bald spot that I can’t see, but my son refers to when we play “cut up,” ie., “your nose is so big“. . .”your head is so bald”. . . and the best of all — “your mama is so. . [fill in the blank]. . .”)

If I’d stay in bed for any amount of time, the cat would “knead” my head. With his claws! Pushing him away would only result in another attempt to get me up. He’d pull a “Ghandi” and collapse against my skull in a non-violent dead-weight sit down protest.

And then, he would purr.

Not just any purr. But the loudest purr imaginable, sounding like saw blades being pushed and pulled by two strong-armed lumberjacks before eating their breakfast. The noise was enough to drive you crazy. Or to drive you to the kitchen to open a can of cat food to pacify him.

And, how about the cat stretch? Boy, if I could only flex my body the way a cat does, extending the paws as far as possible, opening up and ridding myself of the sleepy stiffness. Let’s not forget when they put both paws in front of them, and stretch their hind parts way in the air.

They do that when you pet them too. Extend the hind parts for that last bit of a hand contact stretching all the way from the ears over the shoulders, across the back and onto the butt, which never fails to rise a good 8 to 12 inches from the rest of the body.

Now that’s getting into real appreciation of another sentient being. Such pleasure. You wish some times that you can express yourself the same way when someone lavishes attention on you for simply “being” your self, having come into their realm of life, and showing you pure unadulterated love.

It’s just like the cat’s “meow” and their way of saying  “thank you, I love you too.”

15 comments on “Cat’s meow: ‘thank you, I love you too!’

  1. Randy says:

    I don’t know that I want to be called a ‘cat person’ (it always conjures up news reports of the crazy old lady living with 35 cats – a ‘cat lady’), but you could say I love cats 🙂

    Nice story


    • contoveros says:

      “Cat person” really got bad press at some point. Worse of course is a “cat lady,” which I think most would agree was a woman with lots and lots of felines running freely in her home.

      35 sounds about right!


      michael j


  2. JhanaJian says:

    I’m a cat person too — and a dog person, and a bird person, and a fish person… Cats are cool though — such eccentric creatures. I’d take that rooster too, but I know damned well you’d miss it, Michael. Admit it. How blessed you are to have that sombich in your life!


    • My cat. Sundance, meows for dry food as soon as I finish reading this. No time to make a reply. I had forgot to get the nourishment to her. I keep the dry food in a large glass container. Holds about 24 ounces. The lid is in the shape of a bird, some three inches high in the color silver.

      The bird faces the cat bowls. They rest in a wooden “tray” elevated some four to five inches from the cupboard where it rests. The animals don’t have to “bend over” as much. Kinda ergonomically designed.

      It’s a “rooster” that greets them for meals and helps to preserve their food. I started collecting the sombitches long before we got “Sombitch.”

      Got two stained glass lamps as well as a wooden bowl with a Chinese-styled part red rooster years before my feathered friend ever hatched. Was the Universe conspiring to bring us together back then?

      Could be food for another post!


  3. pcadams says:

    How is it we become “cat people” or “dog people,” I wonder…I used to have a cat. Now I am considering adopting a dog…once upon a time I had a Guinea pig. Can there be “cavvy people” too?




    • contoveros says:

      How would you like a rooster?

      Dead or alive.

      I’ll pay you to take him.

      Nah, I guess I just have to make peace with him, our newest pet. But why does he always challenge me and try to sneak up and attack?

      Dogs are loyal, cats choose to whom to befriend, but a rooster?

      How can someone get close enough to one to be a “rooster people?”


  4. kim says:

    I’m a cat person too. I used to be a dog person, but we’ve had cats the past several years and they have been the sweetest little loves ever. Am familiar with the morning walk all over your head routine. My last cat used to tap my forehead with her little paw. Current cat is less gentle. 🙂


    • contoveros says:

      They’re like little people with their own personalities and cute tricks. One greets me when I pull up to the house in a car by running down the steps, getting her head pet and then rolling on the pavement and shaking dirt off when straightening up.

      Another rang a bell attached to a kitchen door leading to the back yard whenever he wanted to go out. He had us well trained.

      Others I trained like Pavlov”s dog, making them salivate while outdoors and hearing a bell ring from the nearby kitchen. Worked like a charm whenever I’d feed them and they were outside.

      And then there’s the stand-offish one, the oldest pet who saw all other animals come into the house and “displace” her. Dog, Guinea pig, rabbit, dozens of caged mice, hermit crabs, turtles and a parakeet, not to mention hens and a delinquent rooster. (Not in the house, but in control of the yard outside!)

      She’s steadfast and warm in my lap. And friendly as long as there are no other pets around.

      michael j


  5. Snædís says:

    prrrrrrrrr i love you toooo!

    … since I began doing yoga, every time I see a dog or a cat stretch the way you so beautifully described, the thought of my own stiffness makes me blush!

    Love this story – and particularly the head massage part – wow! or rather, meow!


  6. Like you, I’m a cat person too. The neat thing is that you have to earn their trust, but once you do, and after they’ve been fed, they just want your attention and love. People joke about being slaves to them, but in every joke is a little kernel of truth.

    Those of us who love cats know this, and are fine with it. *grin*

    So enjoyable to read about your experiences with yours – the stretching and the subtle signals of where you need to scritch next. 🙂


    • The cat uses lots of body language. And yes, they will always let you know where they want you to scratch and or pet.

      Like when they get “pushy” by nudging my hand to continue when I laid it to rest. The cat’s not ready to rest. She’s just started enjoying our contact and would let me “pet away” if she could convince me to do so . . .

      michael j


  7. Katharine says:

    Hurrah for cats! And for cat-people! Fun post, Michael.


    • Thanks, I had fun conjuring up the images.”Twas ‘brilling and the gyre did gimble in the wabe . . .”

      Can’t recall much of the cheshire cat except the disappearance of all but the smile in the Disney classic cartoon.


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