My Uncle Bob and Aunt Eleanor once visited the house in Roseville, MI bringing their two Siamese cats with them. My parents come from long lines of ancestors that are not "Cat People". These two female cats -- as cats will -- walked everywhere, including across the table which was set for dinner. My Aunt Eleanor, as a cat person, hardly seemed to notice. She really did not work very hard at evicting them when they trespassed across the kitchen counters and other food preparation areas. My 88 year old mother still shivers at the memory of cats in her kitchen.
However, at one point, the cats seemed to disappear. They became catly quiet. Suddenly, in the middle of dessert, one cat streaked across the dining room, then across the living room headed for the second floor with the second cat bounding up from the basement close behind. A trail of fine black powder streamed in their wake. My mother and her brother were up in a flash trailing the cats upstairs, while the rest of us tried to analyze the forensic evidence left behind.
My mother was screaming at her brother as she came down the steps with a black object held at arm's length. What first looked like a limp and bedraggled mouse was my father's artists charcoal pounce bag. After this episode and the cleaning that followed, the cats were banished to the guest room along with their owners.
Now, having had close acquaintance with three cats across more than 30 years, I understand perfectly that to a cat, a pounce bag looks like a small critter or at least a great toy. While our "cat-astophes" have not been with pounce bags, we have had to deal with a garage full of feathers (twice) and the finely chewed remains of a purple HP printer box. As I look back, I realize that I am the first in my family to be a true "cat person".