Stuff I just can’t let you miss

An Ig Nobel prize was awarded to Marc-Antoine Fardin for a paper proving that cats are both a solid and a liquid.

Go ahead and laugh if you want, but I live with a cat and I understand this. Put a cat in a shoebox—sorry, invite a cat into a shoebox—and it will become shoebox-shaped and fill the shoebox. Do the same experiment with a round casserole dish and it will become casserole dish-shaped. It’s a liquid. Try to pass your foot through it because you didn’t know it was there and it will trip you. It’s a solid.

In Fardin’s words:

“If you take a timelapse of a glacier on several years you will unmistakably see it flow down the mountain. For cats, the same principle holds. If you are observing a cat on a time larger than its relaxation time, it will be soft and adapt to its container, like a liquid would.”

Fast Eddie as a liquid and a solid. See how he flows between the bars of the drying rack? People, this is science. I’ll thank you to take it seriously.

*

A family in Coventry—that’s in the U.K., so the story’s legitimate blog fodder—called the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in a panic (or so the papers claimed) because they’d spotted a reptile under a bed. The creature hadn’t moved in about a week.

A week? If that’s a panic it’s such a slow-moving one and that it could, like a glacier, as easily be a solid as a liquid. But never mind. The RSPCA sent an animal collection officer, and she crept up on it.

“It was around seven inches long and two wide,” she said, and was “protruding from the edge of the bed.”

It turned out to be a pink striped sock.

Due to the officer’s intervention, the family was saved from a fate worse than moldy laundry.

*

Having posted about spam last Friday, I thought I’d better check my spam folder to make sure Pit hadn’t been sent to Siberia again. He hadn’t, but I found this gem:

“I dear nonsensical body fluid. think me, ally, I make out it, and outside of this blog I’m a political militant

“and do what I can–which is never enough.”

I’ll have to think about this a bit longer, but I might feel offended at being called a nonsensical body fluid. Although I’ll admit I’ve been called worse things, all of which I understood better. Which leads to to think that even if I do turn out to feel offended, I’ll live.

The minute I figure out what the rest of it means, I’ll let you know if I want to argue with it.

And with that I’m out of your hair for another week.

You know, you don’t really have to read this stuff.

62 thoughts on “Stuff I just can’t let you miss

  1. I’m afraid your final sentence is a lie. We do have to read this stuff.

    My cat was certainly a fluid and a solid, but never at the same time. She was usually at her most solid when it was least convenient for her to be in that state. Least convenient, for me that is. She was usually oblivious.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The cat thing made me laugh out loud. As someone owned by two cats, I’ve certainly observed their ability to mould to the shape of the territory they’ve claimed but I obviously don’t have the genius to make the scientific leap to the whole solid/liquid thing. Are they ever a gas? The stench from the litter tray ever so often suggests maybe they are.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I love the theory that cats are both a solid and a liquid.. And as for Pict’s observation – they can certainly PRODUCE gas.
    But what puzzles me most is : What type of reptile is pink AND striped.? One or the other,maybe, but not both, Maybe that could be a relevant picture next time !..
    Regards to Fast Eddie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The news articles did have a photo, and I had to admit that if it was in the dark and full of dust it could pass as–well, not a sock. And not pink striped. And just possibly something that was once alive. I’m squeamish about dead things (which isn’t a great quality in someone who lives with a cat), but even I wouldn’t have called the RSPCA about something that hadn’t moved in a week.

      Mind you, my partner and I did once call the police about a bat that was very much alive, but that’s a different brand of lunacy. And one of the cops who showed up was at least as freaked out as we were. He made us feel almost sensible and competent. I don’t expect he ever lived it down.

      Fast Eddie sends his regards back. He’s pleased to have been thought of but would much prefer a fish.

      Like

  4. Those Ig Noble awards are hilarious. Never had heard of them before. I agree about the cat liquid-solid thing, although I am reluctant to pour my cat through a bottleneck and see if he fits. Then again, I am reminded of Schrödinger’s cat, alive and dead at the same time… hmmm… This clearly explains why the Egyptians worshiped them.

    I like Fast Eddie, he reminds me of the Cheshire cat :-)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This kind of awards sound much more fun than the Darwin Awards, plus their recipients get to enjoy the recognition while they’re still alive. Thank you for this wonderful take on Caturday. Your blog is pretty informative! Also, cats.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. we had a cat who was definitely liquid – apart from the fact that he loved fishing in streams – when we first got him he was a stray and we decided to take him to the vet to have him ‘fixed’. Being newbie pet owners we didn’t have a proper pet crate so we put him in a beer crate with an oven slide tied over the top. The gaps between boards on a beer crate are about two inches at best, but we watched Harvey ooze out of that crate! Still not sure how he did it…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Nonsensical body fluid. Bahaha. Unfortunately, I’ve been called worse but that, that is quite a colorful insult.

    I was called an “autistic shit-wreck” a year ago by an online videogamer. I may have lost that virtual first person shooter battle but at least I gained a new insult entry.

    I love the way you write. Goodnight, friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s–well, I don’t know if it’s a creative insult or just a result of tossing a bunch of random insults into a spinner of some kind and picking three. Whichever, it does at least have the virtue of being new.

      Thanks for the compliment, and a very good morning to you.

      Liked by 1 person

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