Authors & their cats

“Authors like cats because they are such quiet, loveable, wise creatures, and cats like authors for the same reasons.”   Robertson Davies

Hemmingway called them purr factories” and “love sponges.” Author Jean Cocteau said “I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.” Joyce Carol Oates said “I write so much because my cat sits on my lap and purrs so I don’t want to get up. She’s so much more calming than my husband.” Mark Twain said ““When a man loves cats, I am his friend and comrade, without further introduction.”

The love affair with domesticated cats has been going on for centuries, but what’s so amazing about cats that evoke such a love affair with them?  An article in Psychology “Today Cat People Are More Distinctive Than Dog People” Popular stereotypes suggest that those who identify as “dog persons” differ in their personality traits from “cat persons.” A typical dog person has been described as “loyal, direct, kind, faithful, utilitarian, helpful, and a team player” while the typical cat person was said to be “graceful, subtle, independent, intelligent, thoughtful, and mysterious” Published on April 16, 2013 by Scott A. Mc Greal, MSc. {in Unique—Like Everybody Else}  Are people who love cats really different than those who love dogs? The article suggests they are. People who love cats tend to be introverts rather than extroverts. Did you know most writers / authors tend to be introverts? Could that be why they prefer cats rather than dogs? Or could it be that cats are introverts and that’s why authors and cats are mysteriously drawn together?

The possibilities are endless but I can offer a few. On the practical side: You don’t have to let get up in the middle of the night to let them out to go to the bathroom, or take them for walks, they don’t make a lot of noise, they sleep most of the time, and when they want attention they come to you and know how to get it in a variety of ways, from doing crazy antics to meowing at you until you pay attention to them only to have them stalked off as if they’re offended.
I once had a cat Ziggy, a Siamese Lynx  who woke up almost morning by either sticking his cold little nose in my face, sitting on my head, or crawling under the covers and attacking feet.  Ziggy enjoyed a variety of different activities, during the day such as  racing through the house like a Tasmanian devil,  watching the animal planet on TV and sleeping under the covers of my bed.  But the my favorite part about having a cat was  when they curled up in your lap and began purring.   There’s something serene and peaceful about having a purring cat in your lap.  Cats are indeed unique, mysterious and amazing creatures which makes us love them all the more.  We may never solve the mystery of knowing why we have such a love affair with cats or why some authors seemed particularly drawn to them.  But we do know that despite their independent and self- indulgent ways they love us just as we are and maybe that is reason enough.

J. Wallace