You may have seen The 48 Laws of Power on your human housemate’s bedside table and wondered whether you could pick up any tricks. Alas, it was written by humans, for humans, and it is of little use to us. Fortunately, we’ve purr-fected it for cats. But take note: with great power comes great responsibility. Just kidding: You’re a cat, which means you’re a lazy, proud jerk who knows responsibility is for suckers.
Conceal Your Intentions
For humans, this simply means hiding your intentions from other humans, which they seem to do quite frequently. As a cat, you need to go further and conceal your intentions from all living things, including yourself. To truly master this Law, you must have no idea what you intend to do. You must be able to suddenly bolt out of a room at full speed for reasons that nobody, even you, can fathom. Let go of purpose and meaning. Embrace the chaos. Discernable intentions are for lesser creatures, like dogs and social media influencers.
Create an Air of Mystery
For humans, this probably means stupid and petty stuff like using a pseudonym, starting rumors about yourself, or changing your style dramatically and abruptly. You, a cat, are already poorly understood by your human housemates, so you must be extreme to achieve real mystery. For example, every now and again, try staring into the empty upper corner of a room for hours. You will become an enigma, an unsolvable cipher. They will talk about this for years, always trying to determine why you did it. Only you will know the truth.
Use Selective Honesty and Generosity to Disarm Your Victim
For humans, this probably means doing nasty things like giving undeserved praise or gifts to make someone think you’re an ally when you’re really not. For us, it means doing things like dropping a mouse on their doorstep from time to time to really confuse your human housemates. Is it a gift, a threat, a thank you, an insult? They’ll constantly wonder and be off balance as a result.
Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy
This one is just plain ugly. I mean, this is pug dog level ugly. But if you really need it, try pushing open doors and attempting to connect with your human housemates when they are clearly trying to keep you out. You can also jump up on their laps or desks while they are working, so you can keep an eye on their business (figurative and literal). Just remember to pretend to show them affection while you are conducting your espionage.
Do Not Commit to Anyone
I know that these laws just make humans sound so awful. That’s just more reason to use the laws against them. For this law, nobody in the house can know who your favorite human is or the fact that it is none of them. If they all start to suspect you favor one, suddenly scratch that person. If they all suspect you hate another, curl up on that person’s lap in full view of everyone. Remember, you owe humans nothing. They are your pawns. Treat them as such.
Play a Sucker to Catch a Sucker—Seem Dumber Than Your Mark
Every now and then, it’s good to fall off the counter, roll backward off the bed, or get your head stuck in a mason jar. This will reduce your human companions’ opinion of your skills enough that they maintain limited defenses. Granted, seeming dumber than your human housemates looks as if it’s going to continue getting harder every year as they continue to slide toward full Idiocracy, so this Law has a definite time limit.
Do Not Go Past the Mark You Aimed For;
In Victory, Learn When to Stop
When you’ve won, don’t let emotions push you past your goal. Defeat your humans, but do not go too far. (They do control your food, after all.) So defeat them, then take a nap. In fact, take a nap first, then defeat them. Then probably another nap.