My Cat Thinks He's a Great Manager
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When I wake up in the morning, Otis is curled up at the end of the bed. It always takes him a couple minutes to realize I'm awake... and then the yelling begins. As far as the cat is concerned, if he doesn't yell at me, he doesn't get fed. And, so far, he's proved himself right -- if he yells he gets fed. Of course, he hasn't tried not yelling, but the yelling has worked out pretty good for him.
He also makes a point of herding Norman into the kitchen. Norman's around 19 and doesn't move very fast, but Otis helps him along by walking in front of him, stopping, blocking Norman's way and then giving him a shove from the side. Otis obviously gets annoyed by the fact that Norman keeps stopping, but without Otis' constant shoving and yelling, Norman would never make it to the kitchen.
For Otis, as a social manager, the yelling, pushing and impatience with how slowly the food comes from Can to Floor is all part of the job. Like any good manager, he cares about the process, and he gets extremely frustrated when things aren't happening according to his process. If he happens to be in the basement when I wake up, and he finds me in the kitchen spooning Seafood Medley into the bowls without him, he goes ballistic -- pacing, yelling louder, jumping up on the counter... I'm not qualified to prepare breakfast without his direct supervision.
At the same time, he enjoys it when things happen directly on schedule -- we come downstairs, Norman is waiting in the living room, Otis barks out a loud "Me-OW" and body clips Norman, we all go into the kitchen, food arrives in a reasonable timeframe ("reasonable" being enough time to yell at me but not so much to lose interest), he starts eating, and then... wanders off.
He doesn't even really need to eat, so long as the process was followed and the end result was delivered. He's managed the process from getting me downstairs to putting food in front of him and that gives him the satisfaction of a job well done.
Because without his management, the whole process would fall apart and nothing would ever happen.
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Identity Isn't Just for Users Anymore