Cat and Bird Philosophy
Who would have thought an incident involving a cat and a bird could be so philosophical? Since it has been a while since my last “just for fun” post, I’m going to lay something on you that is a little deep. I hope you follow the irony.
THE BIRD INCIDENT
It all began when a bird got trapped inside my house. It was a beautiful early fall day, and the back door to the deck was left ajar to let in a little fresh air. The bird likely used this opening to enter the house thinking it was a short cut to his destination.
Trapped in an unfamiliar environment, the bird kept banging against a window high in the foyer and flying between the window and the light fixture in the foyer.
He could see his destination but could not reach it.
There was no way I could reach the bird to shoo it along without the benefit of a tall ladder. I knew from experience that I could not maneuver such a ladder by myself without risking structural damage to my home. So, I sought the aid of a broom. I thought if I waved it around I could “herd” the bird back toward its point of entry.
The bird only became more agitated.
While all of this was going on, Caesar slept peacefully on a sunny step oblivious to the fact that a foreign creature was invading his home.
Just for kicks and giggles, I posted the happenings on Facebook complete with images of Caesar sleeping soundly and providing no assistance to help the bird return to its natural habitat.
I deleted the Facebook post prior to publishing this post in order to protect the identities of those who had shared comments. One of those Facebook comments gave me the idea for this blog post. The comment went something like this:
Why should the cat be obligated to help? It wasn’t his fault the bird got in the house.
This comment got me thinking, why should the cat help the bird?
A CAT’S LIFE
- The cat is privileged to live safely and freely in my home.
- He never has to worry about his next meal, as a healthy one is always provided for him.
- A warm, comfortable place to sleep every night (and day) is provided for him.
- If he gets sick, he has access to the finest medical treatment.
- Except for short periods of time when his humans are away, he is never alone. When his humans are gone for longer periods of time, a caregiver is arranged for him.
- He gets regular spa treatments to boost his mood and to keep him looking debonair.
- He leads a charmed life!
Caesar acquired these privileges in life through nothing more than dumb luck. Little is required of him in return. So, would it be too much for him to offer a little assistance when the need arises?
A BIRD’S LIFE
The bird, on the other hand, must forage for food every day to feed himself and his family.
The bird must gather twigs and grass to construct his home, which provides little relief from the elements.
The bird must work from dawn until dusk just to survive.
The bird must live cautiously to avoid becoming prey for bird predators.
The bird does not have access to medical intervention should he get sick or injured. He must heal on his own or die. Who takes care of his family while he recovers or after he’s gone?
The bird graciously serenades us with song despite all his disadvantages compared to the cat’s privileges.
Because Caesar lives a privileged life, I believe he is obligated to help his fellow living creature get out of a devastating situation. The bird got trapped in an unfamiliar and dangerous environment through no fault of his own other than taking a wrong turn in flight.
What would it have cost Caesar to give aid to the bird? A few winks, perhaps? He could have then returned to his peaceful slumber knowing he had contributed to the well being of humanity (uh…birdmanity).
With no success using the broom to direct the bird toward its freedom, I lowered two windows flanking the foyer and quietly went about my business. Eventually, the bird left.
Caesar continued to sleep peacefully throughout the entire ordeal completely unaware that a home invasion had taken place.
The purpose of this post is to demonstrate creativity in storytelling. It is not intended as a metaphor for political or social views.