Contestant One: Socks, Slayer of Naps.
Contestant Two: Elsa, Queen of the Food Bowl.
Contestant Three: My Husband, Coupon Hoarder and Cat Teaser.
The prize: zip ties.
My husband had just bought a brand-new container of slender black zip ties from the store, and instead of doing something mechanical with them, he sat on the couch and pulled one out in front of the cats. Sock’s eyes got big. They’re his favorite toy, despite catnip, bell balls, and mice—he always prefers zip ties.
He swatted at it. Of course, my husband pulled it out of reach. Elsa took a turn. She wasn’t as interested, being more into sparkly balls, but it was moving and she was game.
My husband didn’t let her have it either.
He toyed with them for a few more minutes until the cats got annoyed. Elsa ignored any more zip ties and Socks went to sit inside a box. I looked at my husband. “You could have at least let them catch it once.”
He grinned. “They sleep all day—they need to burn off some calories.” He went to put the container on the dining room table and we streamed a movie to wind down before heading to bed.
Husband: One; Elsa and Socks: Zero.
But in the night, Socks got his revenge. He’d seen the zip tie container put on the table, and swatted it off. Because my husband had forgotten to screw the lid back on, those zip ties went everywhere. He had a blast in the darkness carrying them around and hiding those pieces of plastic in different spots.
But most he left scattered across the floor. I know because I went into the living area during the night and kept feeling something poking my socks. Of course, because of their dark color, I didn’t see anything until I turned the light on. They were everywhere. Socks sat on the couch, mid-toss and staring at me. His sister was on the ground watching him.
I couldn’t help but smile. I got what I needed and went back to bed, letting them have their fun. In the morning my husband was of course upset finding his plastic ties all over creation, and it didn’t help that Socks kept trying to carry them away while he was picking them up.
“And that’s why you let cats win every once in a while,” I said. “Karma is a cat lover.” We still came across zip ties in random places the following weeks.
Husband: One; Socks and Elsa: The rest of the points.