Of Pine Trees and Peanut Butter
All went well until 7:00 the next morning, when I went to clean the litter box and found it....suspiciously clean. Hm. And then I noticed poor Gracie, pacing around the litter box, meowing pitifully. There were no accidents, thankfully, but poor Gracie was deeply concerned about these strange things in her litter box. She had somehow managed to "hold it" all night, while waiting for me to come down so she could report the problem to someone in charge. You know, something like "Dude!! I didn't want to bug you, I really didn't, but there's this pine tree all chopped up in the litter box and I knew you wouldn't want me to pee on your pine tree and all so I didn't but man I gotta pee and please PLEASE do something about that tree before I explode!" Apparently it is a challenge for a cat to cross its legs.
I stirred the litter around more and attempted to explain things to her, largely because I'm completely insane and somehow believe that I can reason with a creature that thinks her name is "Damnit, get OFF the counter!!", thinks the plastic strip off a milk jug is the coolest toy in the entire world, and further believes that she she can catch and subdue the light from a laser pointer when directed at the ceiling. I have no real excuse for this lapse in my logic. I only know that it was 7:00am, I had an 8:00 class, I had no other cat litter, my cat was going into bladder spasm, and I seriously didn't want to clean up cat pee--or worse--when I got home, since two hours of chemistry are really enough crap for one day. So, I told her that it was FINE to pee on the pine tree, look, see? There's your regular litter underneath, and no, really, it's just the same, you may pee at will (though not at Will, because he gets testy about such things) and pleasepleaseplease use the litter box or I have no idea what I'm going to do in the limited time I have to resolve this issue before school.
Gracie circled the box warily, put in a paw, snatched it out again as if nipped by savage pirahnas, circled the box again, meowed at me, stuck a paw in again, yanked it back again.....for the love of all things wooly. I finally picked up the cat and dumped her unceremoniously in the litterbox, pine tree and all. She leaped out, but then leaped back in, apparently comforted that nothing had bitten off her feet during her millisecond long stay. I then did what any normal pet owner would do: I rewarded her for using the same litterbox she's used her whole life by allowing her to lick peanut butter off my finger. (She loves it--won't even eat meat when offered, but will all but climb in your mouth to get peanut butter if you're eating it.)
It's mornings like that that make me wonder if I may not be....you know....completely normal. I don't know, call it a hunch, but I'm pretty sure that most people didn't start their day by bribing a one-eyed cat with peanut butter to get it to pee on pine pellets.