Comedian Doogie Horner recently came out with a hilarious collection of, well, very interesting cats that perhaps you weren’t aware of. Let’s take a look at how interesting these cats really are.
Outside of the preface (where a cat so uninteresting that he did not even make it into the book but had to settle for INTRODUCING the book), this is not technically a sequential work, but hell, it’s close enough, so I’m still reviewing it here.
Horner creates for himself a monumentally difficult task, which is to take a very repetitive joke and repeat it over a hundred times and make the joke remain fresh throughout the book. And you know what? He pulls it off. If we rated things based on degree of difficulty, this one would be off the charts.
You could use an ax for logging, sure. A crosscut saw was faster, if you had a lumbercat to work each end. And of course a chainsaw or feller buncher could chop down a table leg quicker than you could hiss — but Mackinaw wasn’t trying to do it quick. He wanted to feel the grain split beneath his paw. He used his claws.
Horner’s two best attributes in this collection are:
A. His willingness to go for gusto when it comes to using absurdist humor – it might seem like an obvious choice with a big book of interesting cats, but I could see the willingess to try to play it a little more straight and just hope that the inherent absurdity of devoting a book to a list of interesting cats would be enough. I think that such an approach would ultimately get tiresome. But instead, Horner takes this already absurd idea and kicks it up a notch. Like this bit for the Imaginary Friend cat…
Tommy loved Noodles. They played games and went on hikes through the woods. If it was raining, they’d build sofa cushion forts and pretend they were cowboys defending the Alamo.
“Why can’t anyone else see you?” Tommy asked him one day.
“Because,” Noodles replied, “nobody else has a dangerous carbon monoxide leak in their bedroom.”
B. The dedication to viewing the cats very much as, well, CATS. This plays out in stuff like this one about the Big Game Hunter cat…
Big Game Hunter
“Follow me into the Africa room, where each of my trophies tells a story: There’s the shoelace that almost bit my ear off. Did you know chipmunks can spit their venom? They aim for the eyes. Ha! That loafer’s hide was so thick, my claws couldn’t even pierce it. How many times can one cat cheat death? Look around you, gentlemen: The answer is on these walls.”
Instead of just fully anthropomorphizing them, Horner retains their feline attributes, just with a twist (as of course there has to be a twist). So here, the cat is a hunter but the “trophies” are all dumb stuff cats “hunt.”
It’s a real fun collection for cat fans and for comedy fans – so that’s a Venn diagram that catches pretty much EVERYone, right?
Most importantly, my cat Hannah ended up being verrrry interested in this collection…