Yesterday while I was out running errands with Elise I stopped by the store to grab some dog food. While there I perused the cat toy section, looking for something that might entice our lazy cat Ophelia. She is so lazy that she spends all day every day on our bed. Her activities include moving from the foot to the head of the bed or running to the basement to eat and/or go to the bathroom. I have been trying to find new ways to engage Ophelia, but she will have none of it. So there I was shaking cat shaker things, rubbing my fingers across cardboard cat scratchers, waving little cat wands---then it hit me, it's all a total scam. I set down the weird wand thing that had, no joke, torn pieces of cardboard, fuzzy faux fur and string and I decided to make some weird thing to dangle in front of Ophelia's face all on my own.
The I had a stroke of brilliance, we set the bar for brilliance fairly low, and I decided to include Cordelia in the project.
I gathered supplies: yarn, a piece of mystery PVC. The PVC piece has no known use, but Eric and I are pretty sure that the moment we toss it the house will flood and the only solution will be the random pipe thingy. Anyway, I decided to employ the pipe as our cat wand. I had Cordelia practice tying knots. Some of the yarn we frayed. I balled up another piece of yarn, it was all very simple and took about 20 minutes (19 of those minutes were 4 year old knot tying minutes).
Then, my second stroke of brilliance hit. I made it Cordelia's chore to go in and play with Ophelia three times a day. I hoped this would help Cordelia to learn to control her wild movements around our ancient cat. I handed Cordelia the cat wand, gave her instructions on how to engage a cat in play. I also revisited the usual rules like don't run at her, move slowly and calmly, pet her from head to tail not the other way, etc. They were off. Cordelia was delighted when lazy Ophelia casually swept her paw at the string, encouraged I left the two to bond.
A short while later Cordelia came downstairs and breathlessly said to Eric and I, "I tried to read Ophelia a book, but she didn't seem interested. She just looked at the closet." We laughed and explained to her that cats don't care about books. She wasn't discouraged. She already had a new idea and was running up for round two before we could finish our explanation.
A short while later she came down and proudly announced that Ophelia was listening to the ocean...as in Cordelia was holding a seashell up to Ophelia's ear.
We also later learned that she had put a crown on Ophelia and played her some guitar.