Gaming With Cats – A Fluff Piece (hah)

Our beloved nemesis approaches…

dianasm You’re three hours into a game of Arkham Horror, the board stretched across two pushed-together tables with four friends gathered around, gazing down at the complex set up.  Suddenly you catch a swift flash of movement from the corner of your eye and it feels like time slows to a crawl as you yell “NOOOOOO!!!!”

It’s too late. A cat has entered the landscape of your game, staring back at you with that questioning “Who, me?” head tilt.  Your friends sit back, shoulders slumped in disappointment, game pieces scattered to the four corners of the room. Your quest is done.

Peanut, apparently also an aspiring city planner, makes a good effort to play with us.

If this scene is all too familiar, it means that you game with cats. They may be yours or a friend’s, but in every gaming family there tends to be a cat, otherwise known as a laser-guided board-devastator.  How do you cope? I’ve put together a guide to assist when you’re gaming with cats, with each method of coping rated both in human and feline happiness.

The Banishment Method

This technique is simple:

Step 1. Pick up cat

Step 2. Take cat to the nearest bedroom

Step 3. Place cat in bedroom

Step 4. Shut door

Step 5. Game

Human Rating: 5 out of 5 smiles.

dianasm  Your cat has been banished! You can game at will with no chance of interruption (unless your cat can open doors – in which case you have a lot more to worry about than your game).

Cat Rating: 1 out of 5 purrs

caticon  I have been banished! I will spend the time of my banishment yelling my head off, scratching at the door, and trying everything else I can think of to show how unhappy I am.

Human Rating Re-do: 0 out of 5 smiles.

dianasm  Seriously, who can game when the kitty is so unhappy?  What if kitty gets hungry?  And what’s with all that noise?  Oh crap, the litter box is in another room!  Quick, open the door!!!

A cat will eventually find something to poop in if not left with appropriate facilities.


The Distraction Method

This relies heavily on having a friend that has no interest in playing the game that has been selected.

Step 1. Select a friend that will not be playing this game

Step 2. Friend selects a cat toy

Step 3. Distract kitty with cat toy for the duration of the game

Human Rating: 3 out of 5 smiles

dianasm  This method may or may not work depending on the length of the game and how awesome the cat thinks the selected toy is. Best case scenario: the cat loves the toy, plays hardcore for five minutes, and then falls asleep.  Worst case the cat does not fall for your lies and your buddy is left out of the game for no good reason.

Cat Rating: 2 out of 5 purrs

caticon  Your feathers on a stick mean nothing to me. I’m going to check out what you all are looking at on my table.  Ooooo, laser pointer! That’s cool, I’ll be back to my table in five.


The Cuddle Method

Step 1. Entice cat to lap

Step 2. Pet kitty

Step 3. Repeat step 2.

Human Rating: 1 out of 5 smiles

dianasm  This has a low rating only because the kitty in question will always prefer the lap of the human who dislikes cats the most. Any effort to transfer kitty to a lap of a cat lover will result in disaster.

Cat Rating: 4 out of 5 purrs

caticon  Yes, pet me my minion, pet me. Behind the left ear, yes that is the spot.  I’ll just bat at that little green cube when you’re not looking.

Sometimes the “Cuddle” method fails. Then it becomes the “Hold on for dear life” method.


 The ‘That One Guy Without a Cat’ Method

Everybody knows one.

Human Rating: 4 out of 5 smiles

dianasm  His apartment is the smallest and he only owns a card table. He has no games and his snack food has limited appeal.  Pack your bags, this is where you’re going.

Cat Rating: 5 out of 5 purrs

caticon  I finally have the place to myself, I shall take a nap in the closet.

Well-played, human.
Well-played, human.

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