It is difficult to yell for distance if you don't want to wake up the kids.

In the darkest hour of the night, the cat carefully put a shako on his head, one with a giant, colorful plume. He strapped a large bass drum to his chest and let out a rebel meow.

Then he paraded outside the bedroom door, banging as loudly as he could. At least, that's what it sounded like when my wife and I were startled awake.

It is difficult to yell for distance if you don't want to wake up the kids.

Bang. Bang. Bang.

"Ollie," I said stern and quiet. "Cut it out."

Bang. Bang. Bang.

He has discovered the most annoying sound in the house. It's the sound when you open and slam a cabinet door over and over again. This cabinet door happens to lead to his food. Another place that leads to his food: his food bowl, right behind him.

"And it's full," I pointed out.

He just meowed at me. "While you're up, why not give me some wet food," he seemed to say.

Ollie is old, like 100 years old. Since he's mostly a big, black, fur ball, his age doesn't show in his appearance. It shows when he decides he wants to eat breakfast at three in the morning. If he could drive, he'd be at McDonald's drinking coffee with his friends and talking about the good old days when all a young cat needed for entertainment was a piece of string.

I got in his face. "Listen up, fur ball, I'm not giving you anything right now. You have food, you have water. I'm going back to bed."

My wife and I went back to sleep, for a few moments. Then our 2-year-old started crying. She's been having bad dreams lately. Oddly, every time the cat wants wet food in the middle of the night, our daughter has a nightmare. It's a bizarre coincidence that either means our house is haunted by some strange and ancient spirit, or the cat is being a jerk.

Mind games. That's what kind of games cats like to play.

If we had a dog, we could just play catch.

David Manley is a husband and father of two. He also is the visual content editor at The Canton Repository. Share your stories with him at david.manley@cantonrep.com and follow him of Twitter: @DaveManley.