chaiya: (teeny kitty)
[personal profile] chaiya
A lot of my friends have been having babies lately. And blogging about said children. I feel the need to strike back.

Your Baby Versus My Kitten

Your baby is often difficult to get to sleep. My kitten sleeps or is awake whenever, and it doesn't affect me either way.

Your baby cries a lot in that loud and ear-blasting crisis way, that way that makes you desperate to stop the crying. My kitten squeaks in a cute and impatient but non-crisis way.

Your baby will take years to learn how to walk, and the process will be full of near-misses and oh-my-Gods. My kitten learned how to crawl on day one, and is now staggering around on all four legs with increasing enthusiasm. She occasionally trips over her two hind legs, but even that is adorable and not at all worrisome.

Your baby is expensive. Damn expensive. My kitten is cheap, costing us things such as an old sheet to sleep in, a couple of vet appointments to make sure she has good health and vaccination, and some specialty kitten food when she's old enough for it. Of these, thus far, we've only had to get the sheet.

Your baby causes major poo bombs. My kitten has yet to cause any such mess, and will probably learn how to use the kitty litter without any intervention on my part.

Your baby is an utter lifestyle-changer. You can't easily go out on the town, you have a lot less money, you have to eat meals on the fly, your fudge factor for arriving anywhere on time is increased by a factor of 30-90 minutes, etc. My kitten has had minor impact on my schedule and lifestyle. I go out whenever I want, I have little economic impact, I create gourmet meals at my own whim, and the only timing factor for me is if I'm playing with the kitten with shoelaces instead of going to a different room to put on footwear where it won't be attacked.

Your baby is sometimes ugly. Admit it, all babies are pretty horrific-looking when screaming. They get all red and ugly. My kitten, even when squeaking, is the most adorable thing I've ever seen. There's no stopping this cuteness.

Any other comparisons from the peanut gallery?

Date: 2006-05-29 07:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Babies cannot make bread on you, nor can they purr. When cats get into things, you can hiss at them or squirt them and they'll stop. You don't have to buy a cat a whole new wardrobe every six to twelve months. Kittens do not draw on the walls. Cats do not generally go through that awkward 'don't hug or kiss me' phase. 'After school sports' for a cat involve ten minutes and a feather or red dot. When cats talk back, it's really, really cute. Cats will not blast their stereos.

Date: 2006-05-29 11:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
HOw old is the little one now? Did you name her yet? Any more cute pix? Is mommy being fixed now?

Also - They never whine for a fur coat or cars since they come with their own glorious coat and nifty self propulsion system.

Date: 2006-05-29 01:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I wants cats, not babies.

On the other hand, I like babies once they become toddlers and are old enough to actually converse. They have fabulous ways of thinking and expressing themselves at that point. No kitty can do that.

But I've also never met a baby what could purr.

So it goes. I want cats. But I like having friends and relatives who have babies, so I can play with them once they're older.

Date: 2006-05-29 03:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This was great. Thanks for the smile.

flame bait...

Date: 2006-05-29 04:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sure, I'll play the game, even if it means generalizing, selecting the advantages and ignoring the disadvantages to make a point, and focusing on the short term and immediate gratification.
Still, of course, I love them both.

Kittens become cats pretty fast in human terms. That kitten cuteness will mostly fade after a year. Babies and kids retain significant cute potential that takes much longer to fade. Though of course grown cats and humans can always be cute from time to time.

The satisfaction of raising a healthy, well adjusted kitten or other domestic pet will never even approach the satisfaction of doing the same with a child. As you said, kittens are relatively easy to have around the house. And if they have a mommy cat to feed them until they're weaned, there's hardly any challenge at all to the humans. In fact, it is absurd to even compare on the level of 'responsibility to meet the dependent's immediate needs' when mommy cat is doing all the real work for your kitten. The human 'owner' just pretends to be responsible. Mommy cat and kitten would still do just fine in a burrow under the house without your sheet or trips to the vet.

My kitten will never have the ability to communicate desires more complicated than "I am hungry" or "pet me", unlike my kids.
My kids won't purr like a cat very easily, but they can laugh, smile, sing, dance, and show pleasure in similarly heartwarming (and far more diverse and interesting) ways.

My kitten, unless we force her to become feral as an adult, will never be self-sufficient, or even able to live comfortably on her own. She will depend on our regular care and feeding for her entire life. There is no chance she will ever look after us in our old age.

Our kitten will die a natural death long before we will. Even before our baby is fully grown, actually. Which will at least give little S. an opportunity to learn about death of a loved one.

There is no chance our kitten will ever do anything to make the world a better place. With kids, the odds are debatable, and they could well have a negative impact overall. But at least there is a chance they'll do something notable beyond making us smile at the cuteness.

Re: flame bait...

Date: 2006-06-02 07:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
(I do recognize that most of this post was borne of the fact that I wish I could have kids soon. All the baby postings make me envious, sometimes.)

Date: 2006-05-29 04:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you! I've been having similar thoughts... and my cat, despite being long past the kitten stage, is still incredibly cute.

Date: 2006-05-29 06:05 pm (UTC)
cellio: (kitties)
From: [personal profile] cellio
Kittens do not require constant human supervision; you can keep your job without finding day care.

Kittens co-exist peacefully with their siblings; the odds of someone getting hurt when they wrestle is much, much lower than with children.

Kittens do not require a college fund, nor will you stay up late nights worrying about whether they'll bring the car home safely or whether they got drunk and had sex at the party.

Kittens will be there for you when you're sick or sad. Children will take advantage of your compromised state. Kittens give love; children take.

Kittens bathe themselves, eat for themselves, and don't generally have to be taught how to use the litter box.

Kittens are unlikely to turn into juvenile delinquents and harm your relations with your neighbors. No kitten ever scrawled graffiti, egged a car, or shoplifted.

Kitten owners can still talk about other things and do not assume their kittens are the most important thing in your life. Parents often have difficulty with this.

Kittens do not provide you with tax subsidies, preferential pricing, and favorable employer treatment, and yet you chose to raise a pet anyway. Some people call that stupid; I call it virtuous.

Date: 2006-05-29 09:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Are you somehow under the impression that chaiya is ultimately choosing to raise a pet INSTEAD OF a child? Think again...

Date: 2006-05-29 10:58 pm (UTC)
cellio: (kitties)
From: [personal profile] cellio
No, I am not under that impression.

Date: 2006-05-29 11:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
cute, and as someone who isn't a parent, I'll say, "I can't explain it, but it's just so different when the tiny squiggly lump is yours." It's a standard of "until you have one, you won't get it." But since I'm not a parent hopefully that's not insulting or clique-ish. When my nephews and nieces cry their heads off, I feel awful for them and want to do anything to help them....when other kids cry I want them to leave.

They're not comparable. Now, kids and DOGS, they are comparable. Poo bombs, expense, attention neediness, and even doggie parents talking about their dogs. ugh.

Date: 2006-05-30 03:38 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Whenever someone says "think of the children," said person is probably trying to guilt you into consensus about some proto-fascist topic. When someone says "think of the kittens," the likelihood of political fervor is one thousandth.

-this is your kind of kitten

Date: 2006-05-30 03:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Not to mention, babies sometimes grow up to be serial killers. :-)

Don't get me started, I could do an anti-small-human rant that would take all weekend.


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