Gary accuses me of having a raging basket fetish. I can’t stand clutter, so everything is corralled tidily into a basket: under the sinks, on storage shelves, even our washcloths are folded neatly inside a basket in the linen closet. When he started the annoying, I mean endearing, habit of scattering change across his dresser like sloppy confetti, I promptly added a small basket to his dresser specifically for change.
As Gary likes to say, I have baskets for my baskets.
When he developed a grating, I mean endearing, habit of leaving his shoes beside the bed (merely a foot or two from the closet, mind you), I decided another basket was obviously in order. I proudly came home with a fabric basket complete with handles and placed it where Gary liked to leave his shoes, since just opening the closet door and putting them in there would apparently be far too fatiguing.
Gary, being well over 6’6″, has big shoes, and he pointed out that his shoes would not fit into the basket. I bet I could make them fit, but while we debated, Gary placed the basket on the bed, illustrating his outright rejection of the graciously profferred basket.
Rosie wandered into the room, paid no mind to us, hopped onto the bed, and immediately climbed into the basket, curled up, and nodded his approval to his lowly humans for finally presenting to him a basket-on-the-bed for his napping pleasure.
I laughed and told Rosie not to get too comfy, since I was returning the basket to the store. Gary poked the fabric sides of the basket, and Rosie swung into action, chasing Gary’s fingers all around the sides, his claws poking through here and there, until I reminded Gary that I had to return the basket in one piece, preferably minus cat fur and claw holes.
Problem was, Rosie became permanently attached to the bottom of that basket like he was glued there. I set the basket aside until I could return it to the store, and no matter where I put it, Rosie climbed back in. I ended up putting it in the living room, figuring he could entertain himself with it until it went back to the store that weekend.
That weekend, I didn’t have the heart to take the basket back to the store, since Rosie was curled up inside, practically turned upside down, tucked into his favorite sleep position. Fine. I’ll return it next weekend.
Except, in the meantime, we put a blanket into the basket so Rosie would be more comfortable. The tag was still on the handle of the basket, reminding me to return it to the store, but it kept getting put off, because only a cold-hearted, barbarous bastard could oust a sleeping, snoring cat from a basket!
I think you already know that basket never went back to the store. When we moved into our house last year, the basket came with us, and I finally snipped off the tag and admitted that it was officially Rosie’s basket, no matter what its original intention was. It is tucked into a cozy corner of the living room, lined now with two blankets (one leopard print, of course), positioned where Rosie can nap peacefully but can nosily keep an eye on us as he dozes off.
Sometimes Sylvester hops curiously into the basket, filling its entirety to bursting with his voluminous fur and enormous tail, but he doesn’t stay long. It’s like an alarm goes off, and no matter where Rosie is, no matter how deep into sleep he is, he approaches the basket with grave concern, peering over the edge like a nosy neighbor over the fence, staring at Sylvester until he gets weirded out and leaves the basket. Most of the time, Rosie doesn’t even get in. He just wanted Sylvester out.
Now that I think of it…we never did check if Gary’s shoes would, in fact, fit into that basket! I guess it doesn’t matter now. It’s Rosie’s.
Image credit: That’s not our Rosie in the basket, but it looks a lot like him: image from The Creative Cat.