The clean desk policy

Ever-so-innocent girls...

Ever-so-innocent girls…

For some reason all of our cats seem to have a clean desk policy. Their approach to enforcing it varies, but they all agree – Desks Must Be Tidy and Empty of Everything!
The mittens (mini-kittens) go for the brutal approach. Pens, pieces of paper, hair ribbons – anything really – gets fiercely jumped upon. Must Protect Order, one announces. Mess Very Dangerous, the other agrees. Should Chew PROPERLY! They exclaim, while completely dismantling my favourite pen. On my desk I always keep a soft lambskin for the cats to sleep on, and anything loose inevitably gets poked underneath there. This usually leads to a kitten following, and then the big struggle is on! It Is Moving And Therefore Must Be Pounced Upon, shouts the other kitten. HAH – I Have Your Foot! Roars the other one (from underneath the lamb skin). And before I know it, a heaving bundle of agile fur lands on my keyboard and completely rewrites my document. Are Efficient, they declare together. Clean EVERYWHERE!
The mittens have been known to be so focused on the cleaning process that they will even pull the tissues out of our tissue box. One at a time…. Once the tissues are on the table, THEY of course need to be tidied up and currently the preferred method seems to be Shred To VERY Tiny Little Pieces! Much Better That Way, they agree.
Penny has a more deliberate approach. She places herself close to the offending object at hand and studies it carefully. Once she has her approach planned, she extends a (not so delicate – Maine Coons are BIG) paw and very precisely manipulates it to the edge of the table and watches it fall to the floor with great interest. Then she has a look around for her next target and the whole process repeats itself. Requires Planning, she announces. If Lucky, Could Manage To Hit The Dog With Something, she speculates. And if she doesn’t – she often follows up the object dropping with hanging over the edge of the table waiting for Molly – our terrier – to walk by, whereupon she promptly bashes her on the head. Got Her! She chortles..
Ulysses has more of an accidental approach to the whole clean desk thing. He had a stroke in his spine last Autumn which has caused him to have slightly less control over one hind leg. This leads to some fairly hilarious situations when he has to jump up on things, because he arrives somewhat out of control! Everything goes flying, and the fluffy boy gets the most sheepish expression on his face. Didn’t REALLY Mean To, he mumbles. (VERY unusual for a cat to admit that, by the way). Not My Fault, Penny LOOKED At Me, he explains. And promptly walks into the tissue box so it falls off the edge of the table..
D’Ar – the old Somali – has a completely different way of clearing the desk again. He turns his back on the offending object, sits down – and lashes his tail…. D’Ar’s tail has been known to clear a full pint glass off the table (fortunately water and not beer or my husband might have complained more..), so very few things are left standing when The Tail arrives. Papers, pens, cups, soda cans and any incidental computer items get cleared in short order, and his defence is definitely the best – Can’t REALLY Control My Tail – Can I, he informs me. Before he carefully turns himself to line up with the next group of items…

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