By Robbi Hess ~ Managing Editor Pet Calendar, Crimeless Cat Executive Story Editor, Chief Cat Herder
December 15 is National Cat Herder’s Day. If you live with cats, you know that it is impossible to herd them. In fact, you have probably heard the saying that a task is as “impossible as herding cats” and that’s true. Let’s face it, cats have a mind of their own and if they don’t want to be herded — whether literally or figuratively — it isn’t going to happen. As a career path, professional cat herder would not be one I would recommend anyone apply for — I truly feel as though that’s a job for which you are setting yourself up for failure… and the cats will laugh and laugh!
The origin behind National Cat Herder’s Day is to celebrate those people who face the daily frustration of trying to manage the unmanageable and for anyone who is facing daily insurmountable tasks.
Pet Calendar: Cat Herder’s Day
It’s believed that IT expert Dave Platt coined the saying when he was quoted as saying, “managing senior programmers is like herding cats.” From there it moved into the lexicon. For anyone who lives with cats, you know they are solitary, independent, sometimes easily distracted and somewhat stubborn — sound like any humans that you know or work with? We thought so!
Is Cat Herder’s Day an actual “holiday”? No. Sure, you could offer to take a colleague who appears to have a job “herding cats” out to lunch to allow them a place to commiserate the fruitlessness of their tasks, but for the most part, it is a cheeky celebration of cats and their inability to be herded… well unless they want to!
How can you celebrate Cat Herder’s Day?
I live with five cats and perhaps I will try to round them all up in one room of the house — you know, just for fun and to see if I can do it. Sure, I could take the easy way out and open a tuna can because that will bring them all running, but what would be the fun of that?!
If you have tried and inevitably failed (as your cats knew you would!) go forth and find a friend or family member who daily accomplishes seemingly impossible tasks. Take them a cup of coffee or a cookie or take them out for a beer after work. Tell them you appreciate them and their ability to “herd cats.”