There is a book called Worry and Nervousness: The Science of Self Mastery. I don’t know a thing about the book or its author, except that its author must not own cats.
How do I know this?
The book makes the claim “man is the only animal that worries.” And anyone who would say such a thing has clearly never lived with a cat.
I have a cat named Liam. He’s generally pretty good-natured, except that he has the unfortunate habit of biting my nose to show me he loves me. I’ve only known him as an adult kitty, and must conclude that at some point when he was a kitten, someone must’ve thought the nose-biting thing was cute as hell and encouraged it.
But Liam is a neurotic kitty, and he worries. Specifically, he worries about his food dish and his water bowl.
He seems to have the capacity to worry about only one of these things at a time; perhaps it is true that man is the only animal that worries about more than one thing at once. A few nights ago, Liam woke me from a sound sleep to tell me something was Very Very Wrong, running back and forth between the bed and his food bowl. I stumbled out of bed all cross and blearly-eyed, to find his dish had only two inches of food left in the bottom of it–scarcely three days’ worth of food! This, naturally, led to something of a panic attack on Liam’s part.
So I filled his food bowl, and went back to dreaming of interviewing shambling horrors or flying an ultralight around the flooded ruins of Old London or whatever the hell I was dreaming about (I have to live inside this head full-time)…
…when Liam woke me once more to tell me something else was Very Very Wrong.
This “something else” turned out to be his water bowl, which was down to a mere three inches or so of water in it–clearly, if you’re a kitty, cause for panic.
Man is the only animal that matters? I beg to differ, sir, and would be pleased to introduce you to a counterexample.
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