Ok, a quick note today because I have work to do: There isn’t much time. The sun is already up. The birds are singing, the sky is blue – for now – Jay is painting the fence today and he needs my help. How do I help? Well, by staying the heck out of the way, of course!
Oh, I hear you ask, but wouldn’t that bushy tail of yours be the cat’s miaow to give Jay a little help with the painting?
Perhaps, I reply, but in order to be of use, vis the repetitive, up-and-down or sideways motion required of a paint brush, I would need to develop all sorts of means to effect an ersatz happiness – the kind required to make my tail move on command. Control would be an issue; I don’t think that Jay has a drop cloth big enough to deal with all the splatter. There’s also the matter of my ability to dip my tail into the paint can in a controlled, non-arbitrary way: frankly, I just don’t think I can do this – you’re asking me to control the uncontrollable, to suspend a force which is as strong and as inevitable as morning coffee.
So, I stay the heck out of the way. I watch from a distance, occasionally yipping helpfully about some spot missed, or twitching my tail in encouragement.
I do my best.