Cat: A Hell Of A Nice Animal, Frequently Mistaken For A Meatloaf
In memory of Hamper Cat, by Wonkette Operative 'Horrible Pourable'

"In ancient times cats were worshiped as gods; they have not forgotten this." -- Terry Pratchett

A little while ago, we learned of the death of Hamper Cat, the always glorious Bengal cat who ruled over the home of Wonkette Operative "Horrible Pourable." HC -- real name Raj -- was a constant presence in the comments here. He was a gorgeous cat and a joy to look at, and appeared to be a feline embodiment of snark. One look at that face and you knew you'd seen a kindred smartass, and we mean that in the best possible way.

Our thanks to Horrible Pourable for sharing these HC pics! We've added a few nice cat-related quotes, too.

Here, have some baby pics of Hamper Cat and his "brother," who both "arrived at the Horrible Household at the same time, and grew up together." HC was about 12, and the entire family, including brother kitty, misses him very much.

"The smallest feline is a masterpiece." — Leonardo da Vinci

"But there was a kitten on my pillow, and it was purring in my face and vibrating gently with every purr, and, very soon, I slept." — Neil Gaiman

"Cats are connoisseurs of comfort." – James Herriot

"A home without a cat — and a well-fed, well-petted and properly revered cat — may be a perfect home, perhaps, but how can it prove title?" — Mark Twain

"Arise from sleep, old cat / And with great yawns and stretchings... / Amble out for love" — Kobayashi Issa

"The problem with cats is that they get the exact same look on their face whether they see a moth or an axe-murderer." — Paula Poundstone

"Humans, eh? Think they're lords of creation. Not like us cats. We know we are. Ever see a cat feed a human? Case proven." — Terry Pratchett

"If a cat spoke, it would say things like 'Hey, I don't see the problem here.'" — Roy Blount Jr.

"my cat is always looking at me like i am forgetting something crucial and he depends on it" Megan Boyle

"If man could be crossed with a cat, it would improve man but deteriorate the cat." — Mark Twain

We'll close with a couple of longer cat quotes. First, some Cat Thoughts from Ursula K. Le Guin:

Cats know exactly where they begin and end. When they walk slowly out the door that you are holding open for them, and pause, leaving their tail just an inch or two inside the door, they know it. They know you have to keep holding the door open. That is why their tail is there. It is a cat's way of maintaining a relationship.

Housecats know that they are small, and that it matters. When a cat meets a threatening dog and can't make either a horizontal or a vertical escape, it'll suddenly triple its size, inflating itself into a sort of weird fur blowfish, and it may work, because the dog gets confused again — "I thought that was a cat. Aren't I bigger than cats? Will it eat me?"

The Wave in the Mind: Talks and Essays on the Writer, the Reader, and the Imagination

And a bit from the ultimate Cat Poem, Christopher Smart's "To His Cat Geoffrey," written between 1759 and 1763:

For in his morning orisons he loves the sun and the sun loves him.
For he is of the tribe of Tiger.
For the Cherub Cat is a term of the Angel Tiger.
For he has the subtlety and hissing of a serpent, which in goodness
he suppresses.
For he will not do destruction if he is well-fed, neither will he spit
without provocation.
For he purrs in thankfulness when God tells him he's a good Cat.
For he is an instrument for the children to learn benevolence upon.
For every house is incomplete without him, and a blessing is lacking in the spirit.

OK, sure, that last line is a cat lover talking. You're still a good person if you don't have a cat. No matter what a cat might say about the matter.

(Yes, yes, our headline today is from B. Kliban; you knew that.)

Elizabeth Warren Did SNL And It Was Very Good

Elizabeth Warren showed up on "Saturday Night Live," appearing on the show's version of the Laura Ingraham propatainment program -- which we should note is the closest to Fox News Sen. Warren would ever think of getting. We've skipped straight to the Warren part in the video below, but the rest of the cold open isn't half bad if you want to go back and watch the whole shebang.

SNL also released this cute TikTok video with Warren and Kate McKinnon as Warren, and damn it, we could have had four years of McKinnon spoofing President Warren.

You Need That Moby Dick Energy

We've been listening to a terrific new podcast, "Moby Dick Energy," hosted by Talia Lavin. It's a heck of a good excuse to reread Herman Melville's great weird novel, and the nice thing about it is that since the podcast tackles just a chapter or two each outing, it makes that vast big book far easier to digest.

Lavin discusses the book with a different guest each week, and it's ridiculously fun. The pace is just right for me, taking time to linger over Melville's wonderful, strangely obsessive, lyrical language. Particularly nice is Lavin's requirement that each week's guest summarize the "action" in that week's chapter. For instance, Ishmael visits a chapel for whalers and sees memorial plaques for lost seamen (Chapter 7) and describes the chapel's pulpit (Chapter 8). Whether you're already a Melville fan, or even a tiny bit afraid of his big sprawling masterpiece, this is a very friendly companion to the book. Also, the theme song by Noam Hassenfeld will get in your head and stay there, in the best way.

Also cool: Power Moby Dick, an online annotated version of the novel.

Yes of COURSE there's a Moby Dick Energy Twitter account! Also merch, like this stylin' chowder mug:

Fine Here Are Your Cute Twitter Things!

True fact: Even before Lavin started "Moby Dick Energy," I was primed to take another bite of Moby-Dick after rereading all of Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey-Maturin series of seafaring novels, which I finished last year. That, and the copy that Kid couldn't quite get into ("It's awfully boaty" -- same goes for O'Brian) was sitting on my dresser for five years. Anyway, here's a fine Patrick O'Brian joke brought to life (yes, the tweeter credits O'Brian later in the thread).

Damn onion ninjas.

Also too, good observation:

Say what you will about Rick Wilson, but the man knows a dad joke when he sees one:

And so, shamelessly, do I:

One more wombat/Australian wildlife take:

(Remember, kids, a platypus is not a marsupial. It is a monotreme. Like the one that put Brockway, Ogdenville, and North Haverbrook on the map.)

Good week for produce-section jokes, we guess! Novelist and comics writer Chuck Wendig started off a wonderful thread here:

Then AI Weirdness blogger Janelle Shane joined in...

And that inspired a poem by science fiction writer Amal El-Mohtar:

Twitter: It only sucks your soul out through your eyeballs if you let it. Also, I guess I need to add El-Mohtar's novel This Is How You Lose the Time Warto my reading list, because what a title!

A good dose of pareidolia:

Thornton says have a nice relaxing Sunday, is what Thornton says. He intends to spend the day looking regal AF, except when he needs to be a big damn doofus.

Nap! Eat! Pounce on something/somebody you love! BYE!

[Brainpickings / Slate / Moby Dick Energy on Twitter / Moby Dick Energy on Apple Podcasts (but available wherever you get podcasts) / Power Moby Dick / AI Weirdness]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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