This Hammock Held Fast Under My Chonky Cat
And my houseplants reclaimed their rightful place on the windowsill.
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Until very recently, there was a war being waged in my apartment. On one side was my cat, Pumpkin — a rumpled and snuggly 16-year-old Nebelung with chronic ear infections and paint-peeling flatulence. On the other side, my plants — a fiddle leaf fig I grew from a seed (a seed!), various snake plants and other hardy air cleaners, and a peace lily the size of a small armchair.
At least, my peace lily used to be the size of a small armchair, with lovely white flowers and an embarrassment of lush foliage. But then, a few months ago, Pumpkin took to lying on it when I wasn’t looking, and soon my once verdant lily was crushed and wilted into near nothingness.
The problem was that the lily, along with all my other plants, recently began occupying the very limited space in front of the two east-facing windows in my living room. It and a handful of its potted friends used to cluster around the windows in my bedroom, but the light in there would be insufficient even for a vampire, so they were forced to immigrate.
Suddenly, the spaces in front of the windows where Pumpkin had once sunned himself while watching the pigeons gleefully befouling my fire escape, was occupied by large terra-cotta pots and the plants that called them home. Pumpkin was pissed. I tried to explain to him that the plants were actually in the apartment first and that he could still watch the pigeons out the bedroom windows and sun himself on the living room floor, but he wasn’t hearing it. He’s old and stubborn and resists change of any kind.
I was about to give in and hand the lily over to a friend when someone suggested I try this suction cup-mounted cat hammock from Tuft and Paw. “I hate cat furniture,” I said. “It’s so tacky.” “Not this one,” she promised. “It’s actually really chic and minimalist. You’ll love it. And so will Pumpkin.” Long story short, she was right.
The matte black powder-coated metal frame is understated and elegant, and the clear plastic suction cups practically disappear against my windows. I was worried mere suction cups wouldn’t be strong enough to support my portly Pumpkin (15 lbs.), but they’re pretty darn sturdy and, according to the manufacturer, can safely handle a cat up to twice Pumpkin’s size.
There were two options for the hammock itself: simple grey felt or fluffy off-white shag. I considered the shag, but Pumpkin generally eschews anything fluffier than himself (jealousy, I suspect), so went with the grey felt option instead.
Pumpkin isn’t much of a jumper, so he still uses the edge of one of the terra-cotta planters to get up and down, but at least he’s stopped lying in them. After two weeks, my bedraggled peace lily is finally starting to come back to life. Pumpkin is happy, the plant’s are happy, and I am happy. The war of the window is over. Long may peace reign.
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Charles Manning is an actor, writer, and fashion/media consultant living in New York City with his two cats, Pumpkin and Bear. Follow him on Instagram @charlesemanning.