January 22nd, 2009

Abbie onna Table

"I'm sorry I hacked your cat!"

The other night I was explaining the sheer hilarity of placing a Chip Clip on the fur of the cat's back. Upon feeling this change to the fur, a cat will instinctively believe it is walking under something and then try to slink underneath the obstacle. However, the sensation does not go away, so the cat ends up slinking around everywhere looking very cross indeed. It is a laugh a minute if you like cross-looking cats pretending to be weasels.

I do not consider this cat baiting or any other horrendous form of meanness. Nay, I consider myself performing a job similar to that of the peon who walked or rode behind Caesar during public processions, continually whispering into the emperor's ear that he, too, was only mortal. Cat, you have as much dignity as the rest of us. Here is where we disprove your claimed surfeit.

Lacking a Chip Clip at the time (a "Chip Clip", of course, is the elongated clothespin-type device that keeps your bags of potato chips nicely closed up and fresh), I opted instead to try a little alligator clip that you use to keep a small stack of paper fastened together. I scored nearly a direct hit on the cat's back, but instead of entering into a state of perma-slink, he just walked briefly, shook his back fur in an attempt to dislodge the clip, and complained loudly at me that SOMETHING wasn't very funny at ALL.

Fair enough. One of the other people in the room wondered out loud what would happen if the clip was placed on some other part of the cat's fur. She took the clip and affixed it to the fur on the side of Abbie's neck, a little behind the mane proper.

Abbie promptly threw up.

We are still not quite sure if the clip on the side of the neck actually prompted him to yarf -- was it something to do with equilibrium or another instinctive stimulus/response? Or was it mere coincidence? Abbie does throw up on a not-so-rare basis, and we could have just had the bad timing of messing about with the clip when he was getting ready to kick his last meal out of his stomach for one reason or another. Still, we were not willing to repeat the experiment, because we realized it was probably not kind to continue the Scientific Method in this fashion and also because I was running out of paper towels.

This did not mean, however, that we could not claim that we had indeed gone and broken Abbie's firmware. CRITICAL ERROR VB540.dH0 IN LINE 15, DINNER DUMPED. And suddenly I had someone ferverently apologizing to me for hacking my cat. (He went back to the food dish a few minutes later, so I know his appetite hadn't suffered in any way, and he didn't go sulk for the rest of the night so his bruised ego seems to have healed.)

With this in mind, I am now trying to figure out how you flash his BIOS for the next time we may encounter CatOS problems.
Coming Attractions

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You know how every year they announce the film lineup for the 24-Hour Science-Fiction Movie Marathon and I go HOLY CRAP THIS IS STELLAR and all that? Well, this year I mean it. A lot more so than previous years! I mean, let's take a look, in chronological order, with links leading to film trailers:

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Anyway. Somerville Theatre. Starts at noon Sunday, February 15th. Ends noon Monday, February 16th. Getcher tickets here if you haven't already done so. Meet me up in the balcony. You know who you are.