Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Confederacy of dunces

In case you're wondering why I've offered you nothing but a burrowing bunny all week ... I was ordered to take some time off "to just be a cat." Seems Mister and Madame are concerned that I get too worked up over stuff and that I don't know how to relax. As if 16 hours of sleep a day is not enough. This all started with that trip to the vet. The lab work came back and confirmed exactly what I'd told them: I'm fine. But the Madame will hear none of it. She thinks I am under too much stress. She says I'm starting to remind her of Ignatius Reilly. "Who?" I said. Never mind, she said, let's just say you are starting to adopt a borderline imperious tone.

The Madame went into the den with a bushel of peas to shell, so it was an opportune time for a clandestine foray into cyberspace. I wanted to find out who this Reilly is. And I don't like what I discovered. First of all, he's a fictional character—a disheveled, disgusting one at that. He is a hypochondriac. I, on the other hand, must insist relentlessly that there is nothing wrong with me. I don't steal hot dogs from my employer. I revel in pop culture. And I have never abused a glove, whatever that means (please don't tell me—I have a feeling I don't want to know).

I hear somebody coming. If I'm caught, I'm sure to be admonished. At least for a few more days, I have to pretend to "just be a cat." It's a far sight better than being Ignatius Reilly, I suppose.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Dig this bunny

Wanted: video camera, symphonic score, director, key grip, best boy, a dog who will sit in the background and ignore me. Howard, I am seething with jealousy over your production values.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Wanna know what happened to Colbert's Threatdown Number 1?

The bloggers are abuzz about the missing Threats from The Threatdown on Thursday's The Colbert Report. I don't know what happened to #5, but you can see it was an act of civil disobedience on my part that caused him to quickly cut to commercial after announcing #2. Above is a copy of the edited footage.

Whether he owns up to it or not, I am the number one threat to Colbert's idea of America, and he doesn't want to throw any attention my way. I've been here, dropping knowledge in a way that Nas could only dream of. Colbert is not even willing to admit that we are arch rivals. That stings.

Nation: The way I look at it, Colbert is the real threat to America, for shrinking from a little healthy competition. A cat who is smarter than he is a true threat—but not to America.

(Nonetheless, I continue to wear my Wrist Strong bracelet. I would never let a feud get in the way of raising awareness about the pervasive threats to wrist health.)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Ethyl, sans Lucy

Another of the Madame's parents' cats. She asked me to post this, then gave me "that look." The Madame wants me to tell you that yes, there is a Lucy. I presume she was off somewhere learning her letters. Or consorting with Tigger or Raeford.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

McCain will attack Pakistan. As soon as he figures out where it is.

Once he resolves the situation on the Iraq-Pakistan border, he'll build a fence between Mexico and Canada.

Welcome back, Project Runway!

Picture a big stack of plastic cups. Now, imagine what would happen if you cut them into pieces, ironed them and molded them into a dress. Daniel, one of the contestants in the new season of Project Runway, did precisely that, producing the polymerific, bluetacular sensation pictured here. (I can make up words too, Mr. President.)

Project Runway competitors design and create outfits each week in keeping with an assigned theme—with a limited amount of time and a shoestring budget. (Think Soapbox Derby, but with needle and thread.) Last week, contestants were herded into a grocery store and told to grab items (such as blue plastic cups) with which they would design and create a dress. Many of the contestants chose to work with, ho hum, tablecloths. But the more innovative went all out, filling their carts with lawn chairs, flyswatters, pasta, diapers, coffee filters, vacuum cleaner bags, mops, oven mitts, kale and tomatoes.

Jerry was the first contestant to get kicked off the show, after sending his model down the runway wearing a shower curtain and yellow dishwashing gloves. The judges' critique of the outfit? "It looks like something you'd wear if you were killing someone." Indeed.

P.S. I miss you Chris. Love, Henry.

Monday, July 21, 2008

A general time horizon for meeting aspirational goals

Good Monday, dear readers. I hope you had a restful and entertaining weekend. Mine, alas, was ruined, as I had to scour the Internet trying to figure out the meaning of the phrase, "a general time horizon for meeting aspirational goals." This is what the White House announced Friday that President Bush would agree to in lieu of a "timetable" or "deadline" for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq. All this time, he was willing to commit, but lacked the semantical finessitude to express himself.

Sequestered in his office for weeks, the President pilfered his libarry [sic], settling on a book of risk management terminology, which included such words as "backwardation," "heteroskedasticity,"swaption," and Peek-a-Boo. Fearing that American citizens would think he made up those words, he went with something a little easier to peddle. You know, like "a general time horizon for meeting aspirational goals."

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Consecutive Miss USAs stricken with mysterious inner-ear disorder

Cats aren't clumsy. You wouldn't believe the places I can ascend and descend and the clutter I can navigate without so much as tipping over a paper cup. But as agile as I am, I can't walk down a runway in a dress and high heels. Apparently, neither can the two most recent Miss USAs. Miss USA 2007 Rachel Smith and Miss USA 2008 Crystle Stewart each went ass-over-tea-kettle in the evening gown competition of consecutive Miss Universe pageants. Miss Smith went down like a figure skater but quickly regained her composure. Miss Stewart inexplicably applauded herself after her own spill. They wouldn't have had a prayer on America's Next Top Model's semi-submerged floating runway. (Tyra Banks truly is a sadist.)

And now, Emily the cat will show these ladies how it's done.

Shooters on scooters

Sometimes the things you humans do leave me scratching my head.

Content removed with our sincere apologies

Hackers. Damn hackers!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Professional trash-pickers stealing jobs from homeless people

As a conveyor of goods, a shopping cart is no match for a flat bed truck. It's one of the reasons that homeless advocate Bob Erlenbusch is supporting California's proposed law to crack down on large-scale dumpster diving. The law aims to foil professional looters who are conducting massive raids of trash cans and curbside recycling bins—depriving competitors of income. The looters can collect up to $600 for a truckload of newspapers alone. Cities and towns that reclaim waste paper, cardboard and containers for the recycling market are losing tens of thousands of dollars in revenue.

But local governments aren't the only ones being shortchanged. At least 75 percent of homeless people surveyed in Los Angeles said they depend on income from collecting cans and bottles and redeeming them for cash. These roving entrepreneurs can earn between 5 cents and 10 cents per container (before taxes, that is).

Erlenbusch believes the proposed law is worded such that homeless individuals trying to run a small business (or rather, push one around) will not be sufficiently harmed. So it appears that solo enterprises such as Blind Larry's Cart Mart and Bertha's Bag-lady Bodega will have a modicum of job security.

Residents like Bruce Johnson of San Francisco are happy about the proposed law too, hoping it will restore peace and quiet in their neighborhoods. Johnson says of the throng of professional poachers: "They're like an army out there. They're in trucks. They're on cell phones. It's a business." Homeowners pine for the days when a lone bum would pick respectfully and neatly through their offal.

On a brighter note, food sources for the "working poor" are safe, at least for now. Homeless people currently have no competition in the public or private sector for half-eaten burritos. Though they still have a bone to pick with rats.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Golfers fear for their balls

Their assaults on male golfers have cost 50 geese their lives, according to a story by WRAL-TV. The geese infiltrated a gated community in Sanford, N.C., said Tim Hart, supervisor of the complex's golf course.

"We had several golfers reporting getting attacked and getting run off by geese as they were going for their balls," said Hart.

My word! Frightening indeed.

The geese also defecated all over the place and didn't pick up after themselves. So the birds were captured by authorities and "euthanized." Now, I normally think of "euthanized" as something that happens to an animal when he or she is terminally ill. But apparently, it can also happen to you if you poop in the wrong place or take more than a passing interest in a man's family jewels.

I'm so lucky I'm not on the streets anymore. I saw some of my friends rounded up in traps (I warned them, "Don't go in there!) and never heard from them again. I'm sure they were taken to a farm to live with a nice family.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Not to alarm you

I absolutely cannot stand to be disturbed while I'm working. Especially if the cause of the interruption is a giant-mitted nitwit behind my monitor trying to get a piece of the action. Trust me, you wouldn't want to read anything Max would write. It would go something like this: Djkljf hkldjk jeujkd eju jdljkej. After I cuffed him about the face and shoulders, he left the office post haste.

Now to the subject at hand. I did not want to get into this until now, but .... I had to go to the doctor last week. Now before you get all upset, let me say that I feel perfectly fine. I don't know what the fuss was all about because all I did was throw up a few times. Why did the Madame and Sir automatically assume I was seriously ill? Did it ever occur to them that I may have found my meal objectionable? They were additionally concerned that I have been a bit vocal after I, how should we say, relieve myself. I tried to tell them that I am often incensed about the state of the loo after Max or Isabel has paid a visit. Who wouldn't make an issue of that? And even though we went through a similar situation a while back, the doctors determined there was nothing wrong with me. (But not before they shaved my belly, covered me with goo and rubbed this wand-like thing all over me.)

Last week, the doctor listened to my heart, palpated my abdomen (uggghh) and performed other intrusive procedures. Then she asked the Madame questions about my recent behavior, totally excluding me from the dialogue. Her advice was to do a few diagnostic tests, including my "geriatric panel," as it seems I was due for my annual one anyway. And also she went ahead and gave me my yearly vaccines, including rabies immunization. The latter makes me so mad because how on earth would a cat who lives in a house catch rabies? I guess it's better to be safe than sorry (if you don't believe me, ask the ghost of Edgar Allen Poe). You never know when an emaciated, rabid raccoon might squeeze its way through the mail slot.

I won't have my results until tomorrow at the earliest, but I promise to keep you in the loop. It pains me to disclose all this, but I wouldn't want you to hear it first somewhere else. John McCain had to come clean about the state of his health. And as a fellow public figure, so must I.

The one bright spot in the day was that I got to go for a ride and see the sights. My favorite was a bumper sticker that said: "Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country." I laughed til I cried.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Brett Favre soap opera is winding me up

Only an event of stadium-sized proportion could bring Henry's Sports Dish out of summer hiatus. I'm hurt and disgusted by Brett Favre's recent antics, as are hundreds of thousands of Green Bay Packers fans.

Here's the dish: I admonished Brett back in March to quit whining about being "tired" and annul his unexpected, even scandalous, decision to retire from the NFL. When he refused to listen to me, I licked my wounds and tiptoed away.

I begrudgingly tried to warm up to Aaron Rodgers, knowing this was going to be a tough transition to for me but remembering how impressed I was during his brief and respectable performance on the field last year. I dipped my toe cautiously in the shallow end, gradually adjusting to the idea of the new QB.

Now, all of a sudden, Brett is not tired. In fact, he's been "working out." With less than two months until the Packers kick off their 2008 season at Lambeau Field, he says "I wanna come back!" First, I wasn't sure how to feel. I was all flustered and mixed-up and mood-swingy. I reserved judgment as I watched this drama continue to unfold over the past few days. It's still going on, but I've seen enough. My verdict: Brett Favre has poisoned everything. No matter what happens now.

When he realized he wouldn't be welcomed back as a first stringer, he asked to be released from his contract so he could play somewhere else. The Packers have said no, come back here and play backup to Rodgers or shut your piehole. Bitch slap! I think Favre should be forced to go back, sit on the sidelines, and read aloud the quote he gave to his hometown newspaper back in January:
"I'm not getting any younger. I wake up some days and think I can't even touch my toes. I think about that. I think, well, next year is not going to be like some refreshing, awakening season where all of a sudden you're going to feel great. That's not going to happen."
And you know the best part of it? It just occurred to me that he won't even be able to wear #4 anymore. Because his jersey's already been retired. Oh, that's rich.

Seriously, maybe he will come back, with the expectation that they'll trade him instead of forcing him to eat humble pie. But here's the kicker. As of now I'm no longer in the shallow end for Aaron Rodgers. I'm off the deep end.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Consumers exposed: What you really did with your stimulus checks

I saw the same stories over and over again. Reporters shoved their microphones in your faces and asked: "How do you plan to spend your stimulus checks?" As if you'd all had a meeting and planned a standard response, you answered: "I'm going to pay down some credit card debt" or "I'm going to put it in the bank for emergency expenses." Almost all of you expressed disgust at how out of touch the president is. You said it would take more than a measly $300 handout to give American families some disposable income.

Well, guess what. You're a bunch of liars. As soon as the money hit your mailbox, you went to Wal-Mart to buy bikinis and giant TVs. You stimulated the economy alright—the Wal-Mart economy. The retail giant enjoyed a record 5.8 percent jump in June sales. To tip the scales in its favor, Wal-Mart provided, and continues to provide, free cashing of your government windfall checks in all its stores.

I was incredulous about your spending spree, so I asked the Madame if she would stop by a Wal-Mart and snoop in people's shopping carts. Turns out, she didn't even need to go inside. She found a crumpled receipt on the ground in the parking lot. Imagine my delight when she dropped the evidence into my In Box. I have posted a copy of it for your perusal—click on the image to enlarge.

It's too late for some of you, but if your $300 is still burning a hole in your pocket, allow me to offer some suggestions for what you might spend it on:
  • Your child's education.
  • Your cat's education (most are notoriously bad spellers)
  • A donation to your local fire department, whose services you'll need when you set your house on fire burning junk mail and dog feces next winter to save energy.
  • A local homeless shelter, whose services you'll need after firefighters are unable to save your house.
  • New tires you will need for the van you'll live in after the homeless shelter kicks you out and you try to survive on Wal-Mart wages after you are laid off from your current job.
  • 900 packages of ramen noodles.

Friday, July 11, 2008

"Tex" Obama: Ridin', ropin' and surveillin'

Hear that sound? It's the sound of the other shoe dropping. We've been listening for it ever since our household's choice for president clinched the Democratic nomination. He said he wouldn't vote for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) bill, but he did. Twenty-eight Senate Democrats did not, including Biden, Dodd, Kerry and Clinton, former presidential hopefuls with no one to pander to now. Sen. John McCain didn't vote at all. Presumably, he was somewhere having another melanoma surreptitiously removed.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Aw, shucks

The critics have spoken. I'm great. Following is the letter I received informing me so:

Dear Henry,

Our editors recently reviewed your blog and have given it an 8.2 score out of (10) in the Personal Blogs category of

This is quite an achievement!

We evaluated your blog based on the following criteria: Frequency of Updates, Relevance of Content, Site Design, and Writing Style.

After carefully reviewing each of these criteria, your site was given its 8.2 score.

Please accept my congratulations on a blog well-done!!


Amy Liu

I know it's not quite a Peabody award, but I've got a message for my archnemesis Stephen Colbert: Watch your back.

If you would like to view my listing and supply a review of your own, click here.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

George Bush tacitly approves sale of bull semen to Iran

It takes more than attempted nuclear armament and terrorist sponsorship to halt the flow of cigarettes, bras and bull semen from the United States to Iran. Americans have even sold Iran military equipment and clothing. CNN reported today that "on-again, off-again sanctions" have enabled trade of some highly suspect commodities alongside innocuous products such as agricultural goods (the latter to ensure that Iranian citizens, farmers for instance, aren't punished for the ill intentions of their leaders). There is a lot about this story that gives me pause, and you can read the scandalous details for yourself in the CNN piece. But really, they had me at bull semen.

Why are we exporting $12 million worth of bull semen to Iran? Why is it sold anywhere for that matter? I was compelled to investigate. To my surprise, the global market is brimming with the stuff. People can't seem to get enough of it. The primary use of the substance is for artificial insemination of heifers. Seems that steers are very picky about whom they hook up with (I suspect that a number of them are "confirmed bachelors"). So it's up to ranchers to knock up their own bovine ladies, so to speak.

What's alarming is that there are other uses for bull semen, including hair products. Stylists at Hari's Salon in Knightsbridge, London apply the semen of thoroughbred Angus bulls to their customers' hair in a 45-minute deep-conditioning treatment (I assume the semen from non-pedigreed cattle ends up in barber shops and dives like Super Cuts). lists another 36 uses for bull semen, including cough suppressant, lip balm, fire retardant, weightlifter protein shakes, caulk, bullshine (similar to moonshine), and something called "Oklahoma Playdough."

Bull sperm is so coveted that if you own any, you'd better lock it up. Someone stole $75,000 worth from Eric Fleming in 2005. The Maryland farmer offered a "nice fat reward" to anyone who could finger the culprit.

In case you're in the market for bovine ejaculate, here are a few online vendors I found:

  • Bull's-Eye Genetics' Web site proudly displays a waving U.S. flag and the slogans "Right on Target" and "One Nation Under God." Their catalog boasts semen from dozens of breeds and hundreds of their named prizewinning steers, including Playboy, Mr. Extra Wonderful, El Presidente, Guido, BB King, Get Her Done, Slow Burn, Lock and Load, Kabbana Boy, Man on Fire, Who's Your Daddy, Phat Tony, Shock and Awe, and The Bachelor (see, I told you).
  • Seven Ponds Ranch (watch where you step!) hawks its flagship product: The Ultimate Beefmaster Bull known as Apache's Heart (pictured above). Among the Top 10 reasons to buy genuine Apache's Heart semen, according to the Web site, are "He's long and strong" and has "a pedigree you just can't beat." In case you think the above photo is an exaggeration, Seven Ponds assures: "We don't doctor any photos. We don't have to."
  • Reproduction Enterprises serves up semen not only from bulls, but from goats, dogs, deer, sheep and goats. The company also sells artificial insemination supplies, including shoulder-length gloves, scrotal tape, and lube (sold by the gallon). Don't know how to use any of these items? No problem. There's still space in RE's fall classes, which cover topics including "semen handling," "palpation training" and "the use of your AI gun."
I've always wondered how to use my AI gun.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Almost six feet under: Jesse Helms' grave is dug and ready

The Madame has once again co-opted my blog for her own purposes, but after she brought me up to speed on this Jesse Helms fellow, I wholeheartedly agreed to post the photograph she took of his prepared grave site today. The late North Carolina Senator's final resting place is less than a half-mile from our house, so she popped over this afternoon to make sure the grave diggers did an adequate job. As you can see, cemetery workers selected their best ragged tarp and warped plywood to protect the open grave from projectile phlegm and the thundershowers predicted for tonight. The bespectacled bigot will be lowered into the hole tomorrow afternoon.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Ax the spray: Take a shower, dude!

I love it when the mail comes because I know that the Madame is going to toss a few jewels into my In Box. Like this ad for Axe Bullet. I gather it's a pocket-size container of some kind of boy perfume. In case you can't read the fine print, allow me to transcribe:
"The new Axe Bullet is super small for easy access so you can grab and spray anytime, anywhere. Now you'll never miss an opportunity. Keeping these items in your pocket will make sure you're always prepared for a spontaneous hook-up."
The young man in this ad looks like he has been estranged from soap and water for quite some time. I don't know any self-respecting feline who'd even take a treat from his hand. Is this Axe substance really going to take up the slack? (I know. His companion looks smitten, but remember—she's being paid to smile). The Madame agreed, saying, If you're so "active" that you can't squeeze in a shower between "engagements" then I think it's time your mom had a talk with you. Oh, and dude—give your Dad his watch back already.

That's not all, you crazy kids! Check out the promotional blurb in the bottom righthand corner. Seems that if you buy a four-pack of the body odor-obscurant, you'll get a free pack of breath-freshening gum. I can hear scummy-toothed guys everywhere exhaling: Whew! That whole toothbrush thing was slowing me down."

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Darth Vader befuddled by priests

Ever since he glimpsed his likeness atop the towers of the Washington National Cathedral, the Dark Lord has been a puppy at the hem of the clergy. You can witness the entire sad scene here.

Photo by: this guy.