Sunday, June 29, 2008

Smilla's sense of camouflage ...

... is quite poorly developed, actually. Unfortunately, she was born with a coat that makes it difficult to blend in—unless she is surrounded by miniature Holstein cows. Yet every night, she wedges herself between the bed pillows and imagines she's invisible. But Madame and Mister, who can effortlessly distinguish between a blue pillowcase and an 11-pound black-and-white cat, attempt to delicately lay their fingers upon her. She immediately evinces her anxiety with a piteous me-eee-eeeeeeeeee that has the timbre of Mary Tyler Moore squealing "Mister Graaaaaaaant!" Without a moment's hesitation, Smilla flees. At which point, I take up my station at M&M's fingertips: Ahhhh, a little farther behind the ears. Now, just under the chin. There, perfect.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Obama says his wife looks good doing it

OK, this one's for the Madame. I don't have any particular opinion about it:

On Monday afternoon, she comes in the house, slams the door and marches in here, insisting that I google for a video of Barack Obama's speech to a group of working women in New Mexico.

"Did he say what I think he said?" she fumes.

Apparently, he did. His wife, Michelle, he said, is a woman "who worked her way up from modest roots on the south side of Chicago, who has juggled jobs and parenting with more skill and grace than anybody I know." And he adds "and looks good doing it too. Heh-heh."

"Listen, Barack. What about those women who DON'T look good doing their jobs? Women who must clean fish in full-body aprons, beekeeper hats and inexplicably blue rubber gloves? Why couldn't he have added: "But not every woman can look like Michelle at work. Some of them have to scrub toilets, change dirty sheets in motel rooms, and lean over deep fryers all day. And these are just a few of the women for whom I am also a champion."

What jobs has Michelle Obama held? Lessee... She was an associate in a law firm. Then she went on to be assistant to the mayor of Chicago. After that, executive director of a non-profit organization, community affairs director at a hospital, associate dean at the University of Chicago, and so on. Vanity Fair placed her on their list of the world's Top 10 best-dressed women. In the WHOLE WORLD. And all because she doesn't have to don a hairnet while serving meatloaf in a cafeteria. To be fair, we don't know what kinds of jobs she did in high school. But it's a moot issue because Barack didn't know her then and so didn't have the opportunity to scrutinize her work attire.

"Why can't he just quit while he's ahead?, the Madame whined. "It's sort of like after that much-publicized 'fist bump'. What the reporters failed to make a kerfuffle about was the ass-pat he gave his wife as she walked away from the podium.

We don't doubt that Barack Obama is a friend to American women and women around the world. His behavior falls way short of lechery. Still, it's offputting. Ever since Sweetie-Gate, his subtle sexist comments and gestures have become more annoying. I guess now that she's made her case, I have to agree a little bit with our feather-ruffled Madame.

After her rant, the Madame asked me to surf on over to YouTube and see if I could find a 1970s Revlon ad for its perfume "Enjoli", in which a woman bragged about how she could bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and still have the time and energy to give her husband a treat beneath the sheets. I bet Barack would like the ad. Because in her business suit, it's pretty clear that the bacon this super-wife is bringing home wasn't earned while working a double-shift processing hogs in a slaughterhouse.

For all you children of the '70s, here's a trip down memory lane:

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Cindy McCain's green bean casserole recipe suspiciously like Campbells's

Reporters have just begun to plumb the depths of Cindy McCain's addiction to shoplifting recipes. First she provided the media with several McCain "old family recipes," such as "Ahi Tuna with Napa Cabbage" and "Passion Fruit Mousse," lifted from the Food Network. That should have been a red flag straightaway. Would any of your "old family recipes" call for cremini mushrooms and Napa cabbage? Your Great Aunt Nellie's pantry was stocked with staples like hog jowls and maraschino cherries.

Then she plagiarized Hershey, the foremost proprietor of confectionary goodness. The "Cindy McCain's Oatmeal-Butterscotch Cookies" recipe she gave to Family Circle was just a Hershey's re-dux.

Did she learn anything from this? Indeed. Mrs. McStickyfingers has revisited her recipes and inserted a few changes to make them truly her own. Henry's Travels obtained a copy of one of these. I think her special ingredient is enough to qualify as a substantive change in the recipe. I usually stick to Hill's Senior Hairball Kibble and Greenie's Ocean Fish crunchy bits, but I think this one might be worth a try. The extra roughage would surely improve my digestion.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

No more "thought showers" for British bureaucrats

When a town council in southern England instructed its staff to use the phrase "thought showers" instead of the word "brainstorming," the Word Police had about all it could stomach. The Tunbridge Wells Town Council had feared that the word "brainstorming" might offend people with epilepsy, a condition that involves "periodic electrical storms inside the brain." Disgusted by the addition of yet another "management buzzword," the country's Local Government Association said residents are already confused enough about what their elected officials are saying and doing. So the LGA put the bureaucrats on notice with a list of 100 "non-words" they should avoid. On the prohibition list are revenue stream, coterminosity, stakeholder, incentivising and place-shaping.

The LGA's chairman, Sir Simon Milton, said: "The public sector cannot, must not and should not hide behind impenetrable jargon and phrases. Why do we have to have 'coterminous, stakeholder engagement' when we could just 'talk to people' instead?"

The LGA list offers alternatives for the offending words/phrases. For example, in place of "cautiously welcome" the LGA suggested "devil in the detail," while "coterminosity" should be "all singing from the same hymn sheet." Well, THAT clears things right up.

You are cautiously welcome to view the LGA's entire list via this site.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

John McC*nt will no longer allow himself to host his own fundraisers

When John McCain recently canceled a fundraiser that was to take place at the home of Texas oil magnate Clayton Williams, he said he was previously unaware of Williams' widely publicized "quip" to reporters that rape is like the weather: "If it's inevitable, just relax and enjoy it." I mean, really. That happened almost 20 years ago. How is McCain to remember that kind of trivia? Critics have suggested that any quick Google search to "vet" Williams would have turned up this gold nugget. In his defense, McCain doesn't know how to use a computer (he answered a reporter's "Mac or PC?" question with "Neither. I am a [sic] illiterate that has to rely on my wife for all the assistance that I can get." In addition, at the time of Williams' comment, McCain didn't have a TV or a newspaper subscription.

The McCain campaign has learned from this blunder and decided they'd better vet McCain as well. Imagine their surprise when they discovered that McCain, in public, called his wife, Cindy, a word that starts with "c" and ends with "t". (Hint: the word was not "cat.") That happened in 1992, so it's understandable that McCain had no recollection of the comment. "I was unaware that I said such a despicable thing, and so I think it's best that I not appear at any fundraisers in which I am the host, for fear it might damage attempts to raise money for myself." He concluded,"This is all my wife's fault. That c*nt forgot to remind me."

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Superbad Tabby Cat Changes Name to "McLovin"

I finally saw Superbad this weekend and am officially changing my name to McLovin. From now on, you shall address me as McLovin, the 25-year-old organ donor from Hawaii.

Friday, June 13, 2008

"Mysterious" debris trails space shuttle

American astronauts returning from the international space station have noticed a long, slender object following the space shuttle Discovery. NASA has now identified it as "a thermal clip from the shuttle's brake system." The object is described as being about 1 1/2 feet long and "shiny." Remember when the space toilet malfunctioned? And they got two Russians to fix it? People on the ground: Beware of falling packages wrapped in foil.

And they said the Cold War is over.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Anal Probe

The Madam and Mister have returned from their travels. Last night they showed us photos from their trip and gave us exotic treats purchased in far away lands such as Ohio and West Virginia. But most interesting were the strange stories from the road. They saw some very unusual sights on the Interstate, including a herd of horses—an anal mustang, an anal pinto, and an anal bronco. These equines were apparently trying to outrun the anal probe.

Then the M&M explained:

Apparently, humans get bored while driving, and so they invent games to pass the time. I've heard about some of these, including "I Spy", "20 Questions", and "Punchbug." But there's a new game in town. Whenever a car passes, you insert the word "anal" before the name of the model of the car, i.e., the anal Challenger, the anal Alliance and the anal Legend.

I don't drive, but I was dying to play this delightful game. So I surfed on over to wikipedia to find the names of every car ever made by a U.S. manufacturer. Here are a few anal-isms I discovered:
  • The Anal Mystique (Mercury)—This is what goes on under the tail of one of my feline roommates, Isabel, who is too fat to reach her bum. Because there's no bidet in our bathroom, the Madam must resort to weekly assisted ass-washing. The task of removal-of-mystery-bits used to fall to the tongue of our departed canine roommate, Watson. Though he was blind, he had no trouble tracking the anal essence of this corpulent calico. When he was alive, Watson was called Doodle Dog, Watson Schmatson and other terms of endearment. I think he deserves a posthumous nickname. We miss you, Anal Explorer (Ford).
  • The Anal Arrow (Plymouth) and the Anal Dart (Dodge)—When you sense these projectiles approaching their bulls-eye, it's time to hop in the Anal Escape (Ford) and put the pedal to the metal.
  • The Anal Acclaim (Plymouth)—"I'd like to thank my manager, my castmates and the Academy for recognizing my glorious netherlands. It makes me proud to be an Anal Celebrity (Chevy)."
  • The Anal Breeze (Plymouth)—Ahhh, that feels nice.
  • The Anal Fury (Plymouth)—Hell hath no fury like an anus scorned.
  • The Anal Prizm (Chevy)—Even harder to see through than a regular prism.
  • The Anal Alliance (Renault)—Sphincters unite!
  • The Anal Dynasty (Dodge)—Not as well known as the Ming, due to substandard textbooks.
  • The Anal Viking (Dodge)—Reached Constantinople long before the other Norse raiders, who upon arrival exclaimed, "Man, it stinks here."

With thanks to the Annuals (the Anal Snu), for sharing this addictive pastime.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Gores: Take cue from Obamas. Fist bump trumps fish kiss, every time

Sometimes you can't re-invent the wheel, nor would you want to. Vagabond Scholar has all the information necessary for a comprehensive analysis of the "closed-fisted high-five" between Michelle and Barack Obama onstage in Minnesota last Tuesday night. If only Al Gore had employed this gesture instead of the catastrophic assault on his wife's face at the 2000 Democratic National Convention, as he attempted to hoist his cool factor from subterranean level. Ahhh, memories.

Monday, June 9, 2008

McDonald's offers free-range McNuggets, limited time only

A McDonald's in Temecula, California has finally captured a hen that had been living in its parking lot for four months. The company claimed the hen has gone to live on an employee's farm, but I believe they are trying to cover up a lesser-reported story that a customer complained shortly thereafter that his McNuggets were suspiciously delicious. In a very Tiananmen Square-like posture of defiance, the chicken had been planting herself in front of cars trying to exit the drive-thru. That's when the company finally said: Enough.

Also unreported in the story is the ultimate means of the chicken's capture. An anonymous source has told Henry's Travels that the company enlisted the help of the Chick-fil-A cows to nab the hen, then defaulted on a promise to release the bird into their custody. The cows, already embroiled in their own "Eat More Chikin" campaign, were too exhausted to protest. My source has also told me that the cows dispersed upon threat of becoming the centerpiece of a new value meal.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Home alone

Readers, it pains me to admit that this report is not coming to you from the road but rather from my own 1,800-square-foot kingdom. You see, what I thought sounded like "You're going on vacation" was in fact, "We're going on vacation." And though I'm not really home alone (as there is a human "caregiver" staying with me, along with the usual furry nitwits), I thought the subject heading would tug at your heartstrings.

Am I upset? Of course not. Had I been traveling, I would not have been able to watch CNN's round-the-clock broadcast of the exterior of Hillary Clinton's house. What's a vacation when you can ogle Hillary Clinton's draperies for 24 hours from the confines of your living room? I guess it was safe TV for those viewers plagued with motion sickness. For any of you wanting a bit more of a thrill ride, may I suggest the Naked Molerat Cam?

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I'm going on vacation!

At least that's what I've been told. I sure hope that's not a euphemism for something else. I don't know the destination, but I'm pretty sure the staff at Mt. Rushmore won't allow me back after the way I behaved last time. I'll send virtual postcards from the road, as I refuse to stay anywhere that doesn't have high-speed Internet. Until next time . . .

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Bill and Dick's camps: Sorry, scumbags and inbreeders!

Wow, that Dick Cheney is original. He said his family is inbred "and they're not even from West Virginia." And people say he doesn't have a sense of humor! I gotta say, the inbreeding part explains a LOT. (My family came from a pure line of snubnosed street cats, so I have no joke of my own to insert here.)

But boy was my post on how to make a celebrity apology timely. Unfortunately, Mr. Cheney apparently didn't read my op-ed. I kept googling and googling and seeing references that The Penguin "quickly apologized," but I couldn't find the text or video of it anywhere. That's because I should have googled "West Virginia inbreeding" and "Cheney spokeswoman Lea Anne McBride." Turns out, McBride apologized FOR him, saying her boss's "offhand comment was not meant to hurt anyone. On reflection, he concluded that it was an inappropriate attempt at humor that he should not have made. The vice president apologizes to the people of West Virginia for the inappropriate remark," McBride said.

He had to REFLECT? That's the kind of statement you apologize for in the next breath. "I beg your pardon. I have diarrhea of the mouth." Well, I guess that's the best we can expect from a guy who's got a backlog of overdue apologies.

I like his finishing touch, "You can say those things when you're not running for re-election." Does that mean he's eventually going to take off his pants, put on horns and run around the Court of Public Opinion screaming "I'm a douche bag! I'm a douche bag. Na, na, na, na, na. In your face, suckers!"

And now for the next person who didn't read my post: Bill Clinton. When he told a crowd of hundreds "off the record" that Vanity's Fair editor Todd Purdum was a scumbag, it didn't come off so well. So check THIS out. Did he apologize? No. Did his spokesperson apologize? No. Did his wife apologize? No. Hillary Clinton CAMPAIGN SPOKESMAN Jay Carson coughed up: "President Clinton was understandably upset about an outrageously unfair article, but the language today was inappropriate and he wishes he had not used it."

Did someone remind Bill that Purdum is married to his former press secretary Dee Dee Myers? If he expects a seat at their next dinner party, may I suggest he deliver the world's largest bouquet of roses with a billboard-size card that reads, "I'm so sorry. Senior moment, there. I meant to say that I'M a scumbag."

As a postscript, here's an item of interest. Apparently, the word scumbag is considered too vulgar for print by the editors of the New York Times and other employers of scumbags. So I guess mucous-sack is off the table, too.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

How to make a celebrity apology

It's like fingernails on a chalkboard when I hear a public official and/or celebrity say, in response to a public outrage of their own instigation, "If I offended anyone then I am sorry." It's as if that person had been tossing and turning all night thinking, "Hmm, I wonder if I chapped anyone's ass when I said that Kim Jong-il is just misunderstood. As soon as I wake up, I should find the nearest live microphone and qualify my statement, just in case."

Here's a news flash, you marblemouthed doo-doo heads. You OFFENDED someone. A lot of someones. Otherwise, you wouldn't be standing in front of a news camera in your contrition uniform (which smells like mothballs because it has been buried in the closet for decades).

So let's just get that "if" off the table. You misspoke, we get it. But your speechwriter has had hours, days even, to craft your apology. Don't misspeak AGAIN. Take out your little red pen, scratch out the entire sentence that contains the word "if" and replace it with this:

"My words were tactless, unartful, myopic and incredibly stupid. Millions of people are staring at me with gaping maws, and reporters are phoning 24/7, so there can be no mistaking I uttered things that would make a 4-year-old say, 'Dag, that's harsh!'"

If you're really brassy, you can add: "If there's anyone who was NOT offended, come closer."

Now, crouch down and whisper to those three:

"See those millions of scowling people over there? They are thin-skinned and humorless. You and I know the truth. I was only kidding."

egg-y cartoon © FNO Press, 2003, reproduced with permission from and

And a little cat shall lead them

Wow, I had no idea that Sen. Obama would heed my advice so quickly and let go the tether. I looked in the mirror this morning and I could swear my head is a tad bigger than it was yesterday. It makes my paws look even smaller.