Those who don’t think sleepiness is contagious need to spend time in a room with a sleeping cat.

Cats don’t really sleep. They doze. They are one bump in the night away from full defense mode. If you watch a cat while it sleeps, it will inevitably be watching you back, even if you are only a part of its dreams.

Cats are not solids, but liquids. They melt into puddles of purring fur. They pour themselves into drawers and shoeboxes and cabinets. They dissolve in sunlight, turning their tummies to the light as though their bellies were covered in solar panels that kept them alive.

Every cat has a drowsy expression. Their eyes close a little when they are at ease in a situation–a facial expression most mistake for snobbery or anger. This heavy-lidded gaze actually indicates that the cat is relaxed. It is contemplating a nap, or possibly the nature of the universe. What cats think about will always remain a mystery. They hide their thoughts behind that neutral gaze.

A cat in such a state–either pre-sleep or deep into a REM cycle–is the picture of contentment. And believe it or not, if you watch sleeping cat long enough, especially if you watch it sleeping in a pool of sunlight on a warm afternoon, you’ll find yourself yawning, stret hing, and wishing you too were a cat so you’d have an excuse to sleep all day.


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