If you lived in the 17 century and if you were Dutch, you would know that depicted in this painting it is a hunter propositioning a seamstress for sex. You would know this because he’s offering a dead bird while she reaches for a bible, BTW. (The Dutch verb vogelen–to bird–is a euphemism for doing it.)
I’ve never been offered a dead bird. Not even by my cat, Bart. But it does make me think of all the times men have used another euphemistic (is that a word?) device involving animals in a veiled proposition for sex, which is usually along the lines of date is walking me home and says, “I want to come up and meet/pet Bart” — at 2 am, mind you. My cat is cool, but he’s not so amazing that a wee-hours detour is necessary. And if these suitors knew about Bart’s penchant for arm humping (aggressive male cat dominance – neutered or not – is not something to be reckoned with), they might think twice about this veiled proposition.
Incidentally, I think the instructions for dealing with arm-humping cats might actually work on boob-grabbing, leg-humping guys. Just kidding. (Sort of.)
- Watch his pupils. If they begin to dilate, he is likely getting ready to hump you. Put him on the floor immediately, when you see this signal and ignore him.
- If his kneading and purring increase, stop petting him. If he is still growing excited, place him on the floor.
- If he humps anyway, firmly tell him no and place him on the floor.