Jessica Gerson-Neeves and her wife Nikii look forward to making smoothies and soups with their new Vitamix blender. In fact, the much-anticipated Black Friday shopping recently took center stage in the kitchen of her home in British Columbia, Canada.
There’s just one problem: you can’t actually unbox it. “It came in on December 16th, I brought it in, and put the box on the kitchen floor, pretty quickly,” Gerson-Neeves said. “That was a month ago.”
The cardboard box has become the scene of a weeks-long turf war between the couple and their three cats, a saga that has attracted thousands of devoted followers on social media. Gerson-Neeves posts almost daily updates to the cats’ Facebook pages, documenting their hilarious official changing of the guard, changing alliances and bait-box mishaps.
The posts read like reports from the front lines of a high-stakes battle, chronicling the trio’s every move and their humans’ failed attempts to sabotage them. The latest troublemaker is Max, a tuxedo cat alias Sensitive Soccer. Then there’s George the Destroyer of Worlds (“That’s what it says on his tag,” says Gerson-Neeves), aka “Sentient Potato.” Rounding out the list is Lando Calrissian, who appears in the post as a “suspect sentient dusty” under black lights because, according to Gerson-Nivs, he “There’s a lot of fluff and very little thinking”.
Gerson-Neeves emphasized in a phone interview that cats aren’t actually holding the Vitamix hostage. Of course, they can be taken out of the box at any time. But she said she and her wife were in no rush to end the standoff because it provided some much-needed relief.
“We could certainly relocate them. They don’t weigh a ton. It would be very easy to pick up anyone on the box and put them on the floor and open the box,” Gerson-Neeves said. “But why would we end something that made us laugh so much? The cats had a great time, and so did a lot of other people. I think we all desperately need something silly and mean that’s at risk right now.”
Gerson-Neeves says it all started when Max dropped his Vitamix box on that fateful day in December and jumped on it. Like any obsessed cat owner, she thought he was cute, snapped a photo, and posted it to her Facebook group of cat lovers.
“I put a tongue-in-cheek headline on the post saying it was breaking news, but obviously it wasn’t, and I think about 10,000 people engaged with the post the next day,” she explained.