Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cats will be cats

I’ve been watching a video clip of the keyboard cat, who has impressed a lot of people with his musical ability. I don’t deny the boy has talent, but pawing out tunes wearing sky-blue pyjamas does nothing for the dignity of his species.

In my circus days I was friendly with a feline camp follower called Catkins. I never mollycoddled him in human fashion and he respected me for it. “Catkins,” I said to him, “you scratch my back and I’ll stroke yours.” He was quick to agree to my offer, the claws of a cat being the perfect length and sharpness for grooming a gorilla’s fur. I returned the favour by stroking him with my toes while reading a magazine.

The ringmaster, being a visceral cat-hater, had no appreciation of Catkins and his grooming skills. He bought a goldfish and put it in a bowl next to the window of his trailer, supposedly so the fish could enjoy the view. I immediately suspected that his real motive was to taunt and frustrate any cats in the vicinity. He named the goldfish ‘Lockhart’ after a maestro of the circus ring he revered. I gave Catkins a few cautionary words after seeing him staring at it from a nearby gatepost.

“Catkins,” I said, “I know you want to eat the ringmaster’s goldfish. It is in your nature and cannot be helped. But please be aware that if you leave your paw-prints at the crime scene my efforts to protect you will be futile. As sure as night follows day, the ringmaster will hunt you down and kick your arse repeatedly. You have been warned.”

Catkins licked his paws and cleaned his whiskers as I spoke, which I interpreted as a display of insouciance. The opportunity for a snatch-and-grab raid occurred when the ringmaster stupidly left the skylight ajar during a day out with his wife. I happened to be passing nearby when Catkins jumped off the roof with the fish in his mouth. Peering through the window, I saw the goldfish bowl tipped over on its side and water dripping from the table it was situated on.

I decided to help Catkins cover his tracks. He may have been guilty in deed, but any lawyer will tell you that a cat is incapable of mens rea in matters of predation. After discreetly picking the lock of the trailer door, I mopped up the spillage and refilled the bowl. I then placed it in its original position, dropping in a plastic goldfish which I had bought from a pet shop. It sank to the bottom.

The ringmaster returned in the evening to find that his pet had been plasticated. “Some dirty thief has stolen Lockhart and replaced him with a plastic fish!” he bellowed. “This is an act of war! I bet that bastard Catkins is responsible!”

“Come off it, ringmaster!” I exclaimed. “Why would Catkins have put a plastic fish in the bowl? This was obviously a calculated insult delivered by someone who despises you, rather than the work of a feline felon. I suggest you interrogate the clowns forthwith.”

The ringmaster made walrus noises in his throat. “You’re right!” he growled. “My enemies are everywhere and snipe at me when my back is turned. If I kick the cat’s arse they’ll think they’re in the clear. I must behave with stealth and cunning.”

I left him to pursue his schemes, satisfied in the knowledge that I had saved a cat from a senseless act of retribution.

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Well done GB, Catkins needed your protection and you did not let him down. That ringmaster sounds like the worst kind of blackguard.
I'm not surprised Catkins didn't listen to you. Cats are stubborn and crafty manipulators. But my cat is very well behaved! He would never eat a poor goldfish. It's all in the upbringing.
And was there ever so much as a thank you from Catkins? If I know my felines, I doubt it. Granted, the pleasure of outsmarting the cruel ringmaster must have given no small satisfaction, but I do believe your heroism was wasted on the cat. Anything you can do for a damsel in distress?
goldfish have to be routinely eaten by cats or they grow into giant engorged golden monsters that give you the eye. yes.
I knew a cat who recorded the cricket off the radio onto a telephone answering machine. I've never been able to replicate that. Mind you, who'd want to? Cricket is a typical cat game - all about doing nothing for ages then rushing around briefly.
I adopted a special needs cat. He eats inatimate objects and can't meow.

Though truthfully, I'm not sure if he was special needs before or after I adopted him.
I always knew you had a heart of gold GB :-)
Oooh, that is clever.

I'd have just drop-kicked the cat to put it out of its impending misery. Good thinking.
Foshizzle: Thank you, Foshizzle, the ringmaster was indeed an appalling bounder.

Donut girl: He wouldn't eat a goldfish? You must be pampering him with gourmet cat food.

Ana: I have helped many damsels in distress, Ana. I once saved Charlotte Uhlenbroek from being assaulted by a chimpanzee.

Kara: I know you're scared of sharks, Missy, but goldfish are easy to punish. Just piss in the tank if they give you the eye.

My Boyo: Recording cricket commentary is a typical cat joke. Sly and very ironic. I heard there was a cat who was a pretty good fielder at cover point.

Ms OWO: The miaow is something only domesticated cats can do. Your moggie must be wild at heart.

Nursemyra: Thank you, Nursie. I think it's more of a bronze alloy really.

Rachel: That must have been pretty nifty footwork, Rach. A cat's arse is a much harder target than a rugby ball.
I'm not a cat person, Mr Bananas and I don't share their taste for birds or goldfish (you know I have a horrible ornithophobia and also ichthyophobia), but I like that kind of irresistible savage predator appetite that cats have for their enemies.

((Look at Sylvester and Tweety. Don't you feel that silly birdy needs to be taught a lesson???))
You saved a Pussy! A Gorilla after my own heart.
That was pretty damn funny.
You're a noble gorilla, Bananas, and don't listen to the cat detractors here - what goes around comes around and you'll get your reward. I wonder if anyone looked at the goldfish in the first photo though: anybody feeling hard done by should look into it's eyes for a minute, then stop complaining so much about their lot.
Caroline Flint was on Newsnight briefly last night, but it gave me the terrible horn.
That goldfish looks like Lord Soames.

I just thought I'd mention that so that Emerson didn't do himself a mischief when he tried to stand up.
I don't think I could trust a person who could do harm to a small furry creature. Oh sure, a ferret may steal a loaf of bread, but can you blame him? It's not like the poor chap can run down to the market and buy his own.

Keyboard Cat is a bit depressing, seeing as the old boy died in the 80s. It's a shame when the great geniuses do not get recognized in their own time.
Leni: Tweety-pie was indeed the most irritating goody-goody, but I doubt he would have been very tasty. Barely a mouthful of stringy flesh.

Blase: I though you preferred eating them.

Scretia: Thank you, ma'am, I'll try to do more comedy posts for your pleasure.

Gadjo: I think what makes life bearable for goldfish is their stupidity. Can you imagine how awful it would be to be an intellectual goldfish with an interest in Russian literature?

Emerson: Does she have a pussy then? I suggest you get friendly with it.

Kevin: Isn't he "Fatty Soames" to his friends? Getting the horn near him would downright dangerous.

ChrisV82: True enough. I always treated rodents humanely before throwing them to the cats.
Check this one out. Someone went to a lot of trouble on Halloween:
Naughty pussy...then again, I hear you have a weakness for those Mr. B=)
You are indeed a most noble guardian of the lesser species. Can I borrow you to cover my tracks should I ever need such assistance? I regularly misappropriate goldfish.
This is a shaggy dog story of the first order. Catkins could turn out to be a stool pigeon and may sing like a canary, in which case you'd be done up like a kipper. It all stinks like an old (gold)fish.
Lazlo: I think that costume was more pantomime than Halloween.

Auri: The naughtier the better, as far as I'm concerned, Auri.

Madame Defarge: Madame Defarge, I am always at your service.

Lady Daphne: Your metaphors dazzle me, milady.
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