Have you ever noticed how when you are in a particularly maddening argument with your significant other how nice it is to have a cat or dog or hamster to comfort you? Fawning conspicuously over one’s companion animal can be an extremely effective dig at your dismayed lover, as long as you can stop yourself from going overboard.
No, there’s nothing like excessive feline adoration that says, “I have the wonderfully-loving and decidedly non-argumentative cat, so who needs you?”
The thing is, how mad can you get at your cat versus how mad can you get at your man? The two aren’t even in the same reality ball park. The fact is, I can’t get mad at my cat at all. Whether he secretly vomits on my pillow and I sleep on it, or when he tries to accidentally bite off my small toe, the cat is never culpable.
Whereas my partner-boyfriend could be napping in another nation—hell, he could be in a coma—and I would still find a way to blame everything conveniently on him…
Mainly though, I think that language is the problem. Without language, how much ammunition can cats really pack? Sure they can make you bleed without intending any harm, but with such a simple vocabulary they can hardly hurt you (weird cat-attack stories aside). Whereas anyone who can put a sentence together is armed with a dangerously-blithe heat.
One of the biggest problems with languaged beings is when they say something that immediately pisses you off. It’s called “pushing your buttons,” and fortunately, your cats don’t usually care if you have buttons, or whether they can be pushed.
Why get personal when they can simply crap on your stuff to express dismay?
No, the only button your cat is worrying about, if he could think about a button, is the one that would make treats appear in the bowl. And that’s the kind of unadulterated, all-accepting love we all are looking for, right? So considering you would have to be crazy to actually argue with your little fur-angel, here are a few techniques I have developed for winning an argument with your significant other that involve the cat:
The Psyche Out: In the height of passionate debate, when you have just appeared to “lose it” with your mate, turn to your cat and offer the most-tender caress and gentle encouragement, demonstrating to the enemy (your SO) that while you may appear out of control, actually you are in complete control.
The Squeeze Out: When shouting settles into uncertain silence, special attention to your cat can nurture that old paranoia in your mate that you are your cat’s favored one, and visa versa.
The Replacement: When arguments wear on into hours and days, begin to treat your cat as your new life partner. Talking to him at all times and petting him at every opportunity should really piss-off your human partner. Of course, s/he may be doing the same thing, and really, the cat doesn’t mind the extra attention.