Kittygate: Finding a Way Out

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

―Nelson Mandela


Dear Mr. Gibbs,

Did you ever think this was not going to happen? I love you to pieces, but there are days and times when deviousness and the desire for food outweigh your common sense. The area past the carpet is forbidden and that does not change when my back is turned or I am otherwise occupied with straightening the rogue hairs that occupy the left side of my head.

It’s been about four months now and you hate this thing that separates us or keeps your four little paws from creeping down the hallway toward the badlands. Kitty gate is the bane of your existence, along with not eating enough and being want for constant attention. I hear your cries when Natasha and I are conversing or when I am eating the flesh of a dead bird. You want to be by us, by me, except the idea of using duct tape or a muzzle instead of a gate is a horrendous one. I kid you about it, but it is a joke you do not comprehend.

I have to hand it to you, buddy, that you are smarter than the average cat. “More like a dog than a cat,” is what Natasha declares and it’s true. You are not a reader of Cat Life for Dummies. Most often, when you truly want something, you give 110% to find a solution. When I first put up the gate, I thought positively that you would find a way out – squeeze through the bars, attempt a jump over the wall, try to dig your way under the burgundy carpet – but instead, you were confused and had that look on your sweet face that said, “Really, mom? Really? What the heck?” You looked for a way out, repeatedly, but couldn’t come up with anything other than reaching your paw through the slats and crying the cry of the forlorn. I am sorry I had to do this, but smart cats can also be naughty cats and you tend to be both when you’re not cute and cuddly and forcing me to give you girly human kisses on the forehead.

Recently, I moved the gate from outside the door frame in the hall to the door frame itself because even though I bought a gate that was supposed to fit both ways, it has gaps that are suitable to a baby, but too big for a cat. I discovered the latter when I moved the gate to the door frame and Natasha and I tested you with a plate of chicken. Chicken is something I fear you would jump off the second floor balcony to capture and devour, given the opportunity. You may act as though you love your human, but I know you love chicken more.

When I put a plate of chicken outside kitty gate, you reached for it, but a few inches prevented success. The chicken called to you and fueled your desire to find escape. You meowed, paced, and dug at the burgundy carpet, but it did not take you long to figure out the left side of the gate was no match for your intelligence or body size. Bravo! Your determination won a gourmet prize!

It also won the sorrow you must now feel as a pillow has been tightly squeezed into that space to prevent future adventures. So sorry, Mr. Gibbs, it was a necessary move, one that I would rather not take. If only you acted more like a human and knew when to stay quiet. If only you didn’t need to “hang ten” on the kitchen counter and search for treasure. If only you were content to be in the living room alone, four legs sprawled out on the couch in a weird pretzel twist, not listening to the call of the garbage can or being jealous of two humans involved in their own personal conversation.

I could take the gate down, if only.

In the end, my sweet gray friend, kitty gate is there in your best interest, for two humans’ sanity, and for the times when it gets too quiet and I have to yell, “Gibbs, where are you?” I know you don’t understand, but believe me, kitty gate is better than the repercussions of “mackerel gate” or “get-the-hell-out-of-the-kitchen gate.”

I do this with much love and consideration. Truly.

Your Human Mom,

Mary J.


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This post has been brought to you by an incorrigible cat and Linda Hill’s One-Liner Wednesday. If you are wondering what One-Liner Wednesday is all about, CLICK HERE.

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16 responses to Kittygate: Finding a Way Out

  1. Jackjones says:

    Brilliant and funny, im sure mr Gibbs will find another way over that gate, cats can jump very high when motivated by food lol have a lovely day my blog friend.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Thanks Jack! I was sure Gibbs would try to jump from a nearby dresser, but so far he has deemed it an unworthy effort. Perhaps a few pieces of chicken isn’t enough for that risk. 😼

  2. Joanne Sisco says:

    Oh Gibbs! How I do love you!! ❤️

    I promise I will lobby on your behalf for your human mom to spoil you silly. We all know you deserve it 😻

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Gibbs thinks you for being an ally, Joanne, but he would rather you send him a case of canned chicken or salmon. I told him that was rude and impolite, but he just “harumphed” and went back to sleep. Spoiled cat indeed…

      • Joanne Sisco says:

        Theo says meow in agreement as if I should have know better. He pointed out that ‘thanks’ cannot be eaten. I pointed out that a case of canned food wasn’t going to be useful without thumbs to open them … or a willing servant 😉

  3. Ally Bean says:

    Wonderful! Your letter is perfect and I suspect that Mr. Gibbs will understand what is expected of him in the future. Whether he’ll abide by your wishes is the fodder for another post.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Thanks Ally! When I’m at my desk and computer, or in the bedroom for any other reason, Gibbs most often stays put and only feels a need to wander when it’s his determined food time. I believe he knows what the gate is for, but whether or not he’ll behave is always a big question mark.

  4. Dan Antion says:

    MuMu sends her sympathy and MiMi is offering the mini-pry-bar she stole from my tool bag and has hidden away somewhere. I checked my credit card and someone ordered two “Free Gibbs” tee-shirts – infant size, extra small. I see my Zoom account has been active as well, you might expect a peaceful protest outside your balcony later today. At lease we hope it stays peaceful. I also heard someone murmuring.

    Oh, give me wood, lots of wood under ceiling lights above
    Don’t fence me in
    Let me walk through the bright kitchen that I love
    Don’t fence me in

    • bikerchick57 says:

      LOL, Dan! The kitchen wandering will not happen, not even with a pry bar and a prayer. But Gibbs IS interested in a T-shirt if MiMi could stay awake long enough to order another one. He’ll send her a check or a few cans of his cat food, whichever she prefers and he thanks both MuMu and MiMi for their support.

      Next Zoom meeting, I heard through the cat vine that the three of them will start discussing how to sleep longer, deal with annoying humans that grab their paws, and be fed more often. I say good luck to them all. 😉

      • Dan Antion says:

        MiMi & MuMu say “he’s our brother from another mother – we have to help him.”

      • bikerchick57 says:

        Give those girls a few extra skritches from the human who admires their feline loyalty.

  5. LOL. Poor Gibbs. (Ha! For a second that was a typo that said “Poop Gibbs” and I’m sure that’s more how you feel.) And poor you, because I know how that particular kind of meowing can make me want to pull out my hair. 🐱 Hugs on the wing.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Gibbs tends to poop on his own but he thanks you for that command and also your sympathy. Right now he’s being quiet because of food time and his neighborhood bird watch duty. I’ll enjoy that while I can. Hugs and purrs on the fur to you, Teagan!

  6. murisopsis says:

    Gibbs is a smart and driven feline! I applaud his problem solving skills but have to say that yours are superior! I hope he gets used to the idea soon and his pitiful cries for attention and sustenance abate…

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I suppose I am smarter than a cat! I haven’t figured out how to calm his drawn-out meows other than with utter obedience and slavery, for which I walk a fine line anyway. 😏😼

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