Friday, July 27, 2007

Oscar the Serial Killer

My feelings about spitballs - cats to all you weak-minded types - are well known, as is my conviction that their saliva-soaked fur will, one day, be the death of me. Not only that - this death by anaphylatic shock will, in fact, be murder. The cats know exactly what they are doing. I know when I rant on these matters, people tap their heads with their forefingers when I am not looking. But, I tell you, I am not mad and here is hard evidence. This Oscar is said to know when nursing home patients are going to die. He sniffs them and, if he detects imminent death, lies down beside them. Dr David Dosa at Brown University seems very excited about this and says relatives 'appreciate the companionship that the cat provides for their dying loved ones.' Dr Dosa is, of course, the victim of a false correlation. He sees a cat detecting a dying patient, I see a cat choosing patients to kill. Dr Dosa may be on the brink of understanding this. 'This is not a cat that's friendly to people,' he observes. He can say that again.


  1. Back in the days of savage Germanic tribes, the tribal priests and elders divvied that of which a youth was most fearful. And then sent him out to kill it. Ergo, pigs heads, horses, CATS, etc, emblazoned on shields. Nowadays, these activities are frowned upon.
    And while I am in no way advocating the peppering of any tabby foolish enough to stray with in range. A trip to Africa to photograph them, might do the trick. An added plus, being given a high-powered firearm in order to even things up, should one of them be thinking 'fillet d'Bryan tartare'.

  2. Well, quite, Vince, and thanks for adding some historic depth and wit to my madness.

  3. It's not the saliva-soaked fur that bothers me; it's the stare. Those eyes, unblinking, fixed on me, saying "Feed me". I raise the newspaper above eye-level in a "I won't be bullied" kind of gesture. But I just know she's still staring, and will keep staring until I demonstrate, yet again, I am one of Bryan's weak-minded types, and fill the bowl.
    I now worry. Am I this cat's chosen one?

  4. The ashes of my predecessor, Oscar, sit in the corner, but I- the Vic Mackey of the feline world- am waiting for you Appleyard. Spit, spit, hiss.

    Stanley B

  5. If the owner expires when everyone is shut in the house, a dog will wait for days, until it's nearly starving, before having a nibble whereas a cat will wait only until the body is cold - or so it's claimed. So, I'd guess that Oscar is saying to himself "Hmmn, this one is cooling nicely" and is hanging around in hopes of a spot of lunch. No wonder Oscar is said to "pace up and down meowing in protest" when ushered out of the room.

  6. My cat-loving wife insists they are as smart as humans and this proves it. Every lawyer will tell you it is very common for potential estate beneficiaries to sniff out imminent death and get as close to to the patient as possible.

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