Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Meow meow meow meow, Meow meow meow meow, MEOW meow MEOW meow MEOW MEOW meow meow*... ghoul kitty astride the earth... cerebus's little playmate...

... a whole new meaning for "cat with nine lives" ... cat's curiosity kills patient... the grim reaper demands to be scratched behind the ears... if this cat scratches to be let out, you do it or YOU DIE... for whom the purr tolls... bring a coin for the ferrykeeper and a bowl of milk for his cat... in Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels, Death is inordinately fond of cats, now we know why... wouldn't it be funny to stick catnip under a bed?... in Soviet Russia, there are many ways for cat to skin you!...

I like cats. This is not an unfamiliar fact about me. However, I do not like Cats that Kill.

From the New England Journal of Medicine (h/t "Still Angry"):

Making his way back up the hallway, Oscar arrives at Room 313. The door is open, and he proceeds inside. Mrs. K. is resting peacefully in her bed, her breathing steady but shallow. She is surrounded by photographs of her grandchildren and one from her wedding day. Despite these keepsakes, she is alone. Oscar jumps onto her bed and again sniffs the air. He pauses to consider the situation, and then turns around twice before curling up beside Mrs. K.

One hour passes. Oscar waits. A nurse walks into the room to check on her patient. She pauses to note Oscar's presence. Concerned, she hurriedly leaves the room and returns to her desk. She grabs Mrs. K.'s chart off the medical-records rack and begins to make phone calls.

Within a half hour the family starts to arrive. Chairs are brought into the room, where the relatives begin their vigil. The priest is called to deliver last rites. And still, Oscar has not budged, instead purring and gently nuzzling Mrs. K. A young grandson asks his mother, "What is the cat doing here?" The mother, fighting back tears, tells him, "He is here to help Grandma get to heaven." Thirty minutes later, Mrs. K. takes her last earthly breath. With this, Oscar sits up, looks around, then departs the room so quietly that the grieving family barely notices.

* * *

Note: Since he was adopted by staff members as a kitten, Oscar the Cat has had an uncanny ability to predict when residents are about to die. Thus far, he has presided over the deaths of more than 25 residents on the third floor of Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Providence, Rhode Island. His mere presence at the bedside is viewed by physicians and nursing home staff as an almost absolute indicator of impending death, allowing staff members to adequately notify families. Oscar has also provided companionship to those who would otherwise have died alone. For his work, he is highly regarded by the physicians and staff at Steere House and by the families of the residents whom he serves.

What the... ?

How is this deeply whack in the whackest possible way? Let's see...

The GRIM REAPER is apparently a CAT;
Actual DOCTORS, who are presumably EDUCATED, believe a CAT can predict DEATHS;

I can only conclude that the cat is a KILLER. While it is nuzzling the people for whom it "uncannily" predicts a death, it is actually slipping its CLAWS into their CAROTID ARTERIES.

Elementary, my dear Watson. The mystery is solved. Checks may be mailed care of the ASPCA.***

* yes, I used the meow mix jingle as a title for a blog post. This is why I'm hot. This is why you're not. I'm hot cuz I'm fly. And cuz I use the meow mix jingle as a title for a blog post. You ain't because you're not. And you don't.

Also: Blogger: I DEMAND longer title fields for proper six-or-seven line titles.

** Although several people have pointed out to me that this is the NEJM section for complete nutsoness. In the words of one colleague: " While it is an academic journal, it also carries poetry, short opinion pieces and even stories."

*** If the ASPCA puts Oscar to sleep, do people stop croaking?


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