As my cat moves, er, “gracefully” into her senior years, I’ve been a bit worried about her sedentary lifestyle. I decided to broach the subject of exercise.

Hey Stella, it’s time we talk about exercise, you being a senior cat and all.  

Wait, I’m a senior cat?


Huh. And I’m how old again?

You’re 18.

Really? Huh.

That’s it? You find out you’re 18 and all you can say is huh? I’ve been throwing you birthday parties for 18 years and you don’t know how old you are. Your last party was literally five days ago.

What can I say? Apex predators live in the NOW. The past isn’t really our thing.

Don’t you feel that you can’t move around as well anymore?

Nope. I’ve been moving around as well as I have since this morning.

I don’t mean since this morning — I mean since, you know, five years ago.

Do I have to literally define what living in the now means?

Don’t you worry about the future at all?

Why? In the present I’ve got a sunbeam, a bowl of food, an extra 10 pounds in the haunches and the whole afternoon in front of me. I feel great.

But you won’t feel great when your body starts to break down and your mind crumbles.

Jeez, Mr. Sunshine over here.

I’m serious! You could stand to get the blood flowing.

You’re saying I should kill things?

YOUR blood flowing, not others’ blood.

You don’t get it. I’m an apex predator. We get all the exercise we need just by stalking and catching things.

You haven’t caught anything in years.

You have forgotten the opossum.

That was a mouse 10 years ago.

Huh. Seems like last Tuesday. Like I said, I keep my energies focused on the now.

Listen, Stella, the only time I see you hustle is when you waddle to the kitchen after you hear me open a food tin.

That’s a lope. I’m LOPING to the kitchen, like a predator with great hearing.

That belly gets a good swing going side to side. Reminds me of a boy in a hammock during a windstorm.

Leave my belly hammock out of this!

All I’m saying is that you could do more than lope to the kitchen twice a day.

Let’s up it to three times. I’ll need the extra meal to deal with the calorie loss.

How about instead you chase a ball around the yard with me?

Dogs CHASE, cats LEAD.

Fine, you can ATTACK the ball like it’s an elk on the Serengeti.

No elk on the Serengeti, genius. Whose mind is crumbling now?

Well, what kind of exercise can you do?

I’m great at yoga, let’s leave it at that.

Lying on your back for seven hours is not yoga.

It’s meditation. I’m visualizing health.
I’m in the now, remember?

While snoring?

Sometimes you snore in the now. The now accommodates all.

I can’t believe you forgot your birthday party.   

Hey, it’s encoded in my genes. I can’t be thinking about a birthday party when the hyenas are circling.


The mail carrier will do in a pinch.

Tell the truth: Is this NOW stuff really on the level?

The way I see it, yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That’s why it’s the present.

I see. Stop looking at my Instagram, Stella.

Mushy quotes totally changed my life. You should really spend more time on the socials.


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