Gravity is important to cats. Their deep understanding of the subject allows them to accomplish acrobatic feats such as always landing on their feet in a fall. Therefore it is critical for felines to constantly check its state in case someone somewhere stumbles on a disproof of the Theory of Gravity and it ceases functioning. They do this by knocking things at random onto the floor. Some have suggested that this behavior is due to a cat’s instinctive dislike for anything containing an abundance of potential kinetic energy, and that by knocking such objects onto the floor they release the kinetic energy stored in the object and feel better. Of course having 8 cats I can assure you that while an attractive theory, the kinetic energy theory of cat behavior is incorrect. In order to know the truth one must consider the problem from the cat’s perspective.
Imagine what a cat would look like if gravity failed and it was unceremoniously plastered on the bedroom ceiling. No cat would survive the embarrassment, so all cats do the proper thing: test gravity by knocking things onto the floor. In the unlikely event such a test sends an object floating to the ceiling a cat knows gravity has failed and is prepared to execute a graceful turn and land paws first on the ceiling, saving it from embarrassment and impressing anyone – or anything – that witnesses the acrobatic maneuver.
So the next time you find your keys, your watch or anything important on the floor that you didn’t put there, rest assured that by continuously testing gravity the cat not only insures himself against embarrassment, but his human companion from stepping outside during a gravity failure and floating into the void of space.
Cats: Newton’s Gravity Inspectors