His demands are simple: "I want food, NOW!"
Unfortunately, my cat's demands for food come when we're supposed to be sleeping. I refuse to give into his demands, but it only results in an escalation of tensions.
Which is exactly what happened today.
At 5:00 am, Jade woke for her regular morning nurse. Normally, Fawn would bring her to bed to nurse, where they both fall back to sleep. Fawn is in Vancouver for a course, however, so I dragged my feet upstairs to heat a bottle of milk. Then, I took Jade out of her crib and brought her to bed with me. As she nursed from her bottle, we both started to fall back to sleep, warm and snug under the sheets.
And then the cat howled. "Give me food! Give me food now! I know you were up! You should have fed me!"
I whispered, "Shut up!" but the cat didn't listen. He just kept on meowing, loudly.
Jade, distracted by the constant meowing, started to wake up and call Crook's name (at least, I think that's what she's doing - she always says "Ticky" when he's around). Since she'd now finished her bottle, and I realised that she wasn't going to fall asleep in my bed with that meowing going on, I took her back to her crib and tucked her in. Then, after gently closing her bedroom door, I chased the cat towards the stairs and retired to my bed.
Ahhh...sweet, precious sleep.
I was so close.
Again, the cat started meowing to be fed. It was now 5:30 and, although feeding him would have been the easiest solution, I couldn't. If I fed him that early, and got out of bed to do it, the precedent would have been set. Still, I was afraid that he was gong to wake Jade, so I jumped out of bed and chased him away again. Then, I crawled back into bed and slowly drifted off to sleep.
Or rather, I drifted. I didn't actually get to my destination because the yowling started again. Again, I jumped out of bed and chased him away.
But the cat came back.
This happened several times, with me always almost reaching my sleepy goal, before being meowed awake again. As I tried to fall asleep, yet again, I began to imagine that I was being tortured by interrogators, who were using sleep deprivation techniques to get what they wanted. Proudly, I refused to give in.
Finally, I decided to change my tactics and lock the cat in an out-of-the-way room.
Except that now, he wouldn't let me near him, always running away every time I came close. And still, the meowing continued every time I tried to fall back to sleep.
Jade finally woke (because of the meowing, which I had decided to just ignore) a few minutes before seven.
When we were up an about, going through our morning routine, which is normally when the cat gets fed, I refused to feed him until he stopped meowing. He got fed thirty minutes later than usual.
Now, I'm exacting my revenge on my tormentor. He's sleeping on the couch opposite me. Every five minutes or so, when he looks good and comfy, I call his name and make a squeaking sound. His head perks up and he looks around at me. Then, I grin a malicious grin as he turns his face back to the cushion and tries to fall back to sleep.
Hopefully, he'll learn his lesson: He may be good, but you just don't mess with the best.