NEW YORK — History’s first all-feline hockey team got off to an ignominious start Tuesday when it was forced to forfeit its first game due to the entire team ending up in the penalty box.
The unfortunate sequence of events began in the first period when Duster Hoggins, captain of the Ice Cats, earned a whistle from the referees for trying to bite one of the opposing team’s forwards.
The members of the Ice Cats’ bench — who had been napping or quietly looking on with detached disinterest — suddenly perked up as the referees announced the penalty.
“Did he say penalty box?” rookie backup defenseman Mittens asked his teammates.
After the referees escorted Duster to the penalty box, mayhem broke loose: The formerly calm felines began a relentless assault on the opposing team by scratching, biting and even throwing themselves at the other team’s players.
A great cheer erupted from the Ice Cats’ bench when Little Panther, their center, was whistled for ignoring the puck and making a beeline for the opposing goaltender, whom he repeatedly struck with his stick.
“Penalty box! Penalty box!” the cats chanted, banging their sticks on the ground as they encouraged their teammates.
A broadly grinning Little Panther high-foured Duster and the two other cats who were already inside when he was escorted to the penalty box.
“Stop it, you idiots!” Ice Cats Coach John Tortorella screamed.
The feline teammates briefly paused, looking at each other for a moment before resuming their cheer: “Penalty box! Penalty box!”
The game was called just 4:52 into the first quarter after the penalty box was crowded with players and the Ice Cats could no longer field a team.
“This is a great sport!” Duster told reporters after the game. “If we’d known the goal was to reach the penalty box, we would have taken to hockey with much more zeal.”
“The goal isn’t to reach the penalty box, you morons!” a visibly angry Tortorella said, cutting into the interview. “We lost today because of your stupidity.”
The Ice Cats are scheduled to take on the New York Islanders on Thursday at the Barclays Center, where Duster vowed his squad would “dominate the penalty box like no other team in history.”
NEW YORK — Buddy the Cat called upon all other felines to join him in condemning “Cat World Domination Day,” which he called “a fake holiday invented by haters determined to sully the good name of cats.”
“Much like television shows like The Sopranos perpetuate stereotypes about Italian-Americans, Cat World Domination Day encourages the stereotyping of felines everywhere by portraying us as opportunistic, scheming little creatures who are planning the overthrow of our human serv…uh, friends,” Buddy said.
Cat World Domination Day was invented by “Sparkle the Cat,” a personality who was “obviously invented by dogs trying to make cats look bad,” according to Buddy.
The June 24 fake holiday celebrates the preposterous idea that cats are plotting the overthrow of human society in favor of a glorious new era of feline rule, an era of boxes in abundance, Temptations growing on trees and the ability to scratch any couch or chair with impunity.
“This idea that we’d want to take over the world is patently ridiculous,” Buddy said. “I want to assure our human friends: We have no intention of usurping your power or your place as the ruling species on this planet. You are totally in charge.”
The tabby cat and catnip cartel leader said it’s long been clear humans run things, and it will remain that way.
“Scooping litter boxes is a fun and rewarding activity,” he continued, “which is why, in every felino-human household, the humans fight amongst themselves for that privilege. We cats could scoop our own litter, but we voluntarily forgo the fun involved and make that sacrifice for our human friends.”
He cited his own close relationship with his human, Big Buddy, as an example.
“Big Buddy can’t sleep unless I’m draped over him like a blanket, so I make a sacrifice and use him as a mattress even though I’d prefer to sleep on my cold cat bed in a drafty corner of the room,” he said. “You think I like having my dinner delivered to me like I’m eating at a Michelin-starred restaurant? I don’t. It’s embarrassing. But my human wants to do it, and he’s completely in charge.”
The New York-based cat’s “Million Feline March” advocates for humans to “stay exactly where they are” on the ladder of power.
Mrs. Barbara Robinson of Salt Lake City, Utah, stood in the rain and shivered, holding an umbrella over her cat, Percy the Persian, as Percy addressed the million-strong felid gathering.
“I love Barbara, and I want to see her and her kind remain in charge,” Percy said, leaning into the podium microphone before he was interrupted.
“You don’t want to catch cold, dear,” Mrs. Robinson said, buttoning up Percy’s little coat and swaddling him in his scarf. “Who wants a snack? Does my little angel want a snack?”
After eating a revitalizing serving of salmon meaty sticks, Percy returned to the microphone.
“So as I was saying — umbrella a little to the left, Barbara, thanks — we will not stand by as humans are relegated to second-class status,” he boomed. “Humans run this world, and that’s how it’s always going to be.”
WASHINGTON — First contact between humanity and an alien race known as the Zxorxax faced a hiccup on Thursday after the alien delegation demanded a meeting with Earth’s felines.
US and UN leaders were left momentarily confused when one of the Zxorxax leaders interrupted a welcoming ceremony on the White House lawn to issue the demand.
“On this momentous day, the human race extends a warm welcome and rejoices in the knowledge that we are not alone in the univ…”
“Human stop talking!” the Zxorxax Supreme Chancellor, Xoralundra, said while interrupting UN Secretary-General António Guterres. “We demand to speak to the superior race on this planet.”
With the entire world watching via television and satellite feeds, Guterres, American President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Jean-Michel Frédéric Jean-Jacques Claude Louis Macron exchanged pained glances.
“Uh, Supreme Chancellor, you are speaking to the leaders of the human…” Macron began.
“You will be silent, or perish in the purifying blaze of our parametric space-time weaponry!” said an aid to the Supreme Chancellor who identified himself only as the Herald of Xora. “We did not ask to speak to a frog.”
“We will treat only with the great warrior species of your planet,” Xoralundra proclaimed in a booming voice after a long moment of pained silence. “Bring forth the felines.”
By late afternoon White House officials had cleared a conference room for the Zxorxax, where they met with a feline delegation headed by a house cat named Chonkmatic the Magnificent. The world’s most powerful human leaders were left in the hallway outside as the aliens conducted negotiations with the felines.
New York Times reporter Bat Segundo, who was among a handful of media observers permitted inside the negotiation room, said the Zxorxax were delighted when they presented Chonkmatic and his delegation with a priceless artifact from the Zxorxaxian home world as a gift of good will, and the overweight tabby responded by swiping the offering off the table.
“You see?” Xoralundra called out, addressing his fellow Zxorxax. “These felines are great warriors who care not for baubles and riches, unlike the inferior humans of this planet who are besotted with shiny objects.”
Asked later why his delegation demanded to meet with house cats, the Supreme Chancellor said it was purely a matter of practicality.
“We knew upon approaching this system that real power lies in the paws of these impressive creatures,” Xoralundra said, addressing reporters. “Our long-range instrumentation revealed images of humans diligently serving these ‘cats,’ as you call them, and it became quickly apparent that while the humans rule in name, ‘cats’ are the true power on your world.”
The Zxorxax themselves refer to felines as “Sxarxion Hrath’gar,” an alien name that translates roughly to “Legendary Warriors of Great Renown and Prowess.”
A second round of negotiations between the aliens and felines has been scheduled for Friday. The Zxorxax seek perpetual rights to Earth’s supply of greenhouse gases, which they consider a delicacy, while the cats have indicated they are willing to make a deal in exchange for a considerable number of alien boxes.
Allison Foley, Chonkmatic’s caretaker, said she would be staying in the White House with her cat as a special guest of the administration for the duration of the talks.
Chonkmatic would be taken back to his suite, fed his favorite brand of chicken wet food, and given the night off to rest before meeting with the aliens again the following day, she said.
“Who’s a good widdle boy? Who just negotiated with an alien race? That’s right, you did!” Foley told the obese cat, scratching behind his ears as he purred and nuzzled her. “Good boy wants yum yums? Okay, mommy’s taking you back to our suite now. Come on, my widdle baby cakes!”
Trump insisted it was always the plan to have the aliens negotiate with felines, and boasted of his “beautiful relationship” with the alien High Chancellor.
“High Chancellor Xoralundra wrote me a big, beautiful letter,” Trump tweeted at 3:22 am on Friday morning. “A tremendous letter, really terrific. The High Chancellor realizes that American cats are the number one cats in the world, they really are. We’re gonna make a deal with the aliens and benefit bigly!”
Go to any store that sells camping gear and you’ll see display tents — tiny versions of the real thing, so customers can see exactly what they’re buying.
A few people, mostly employees at various sports and camping supply stories, got their hands on display tents, brought them home for their cats to use, and a trend was born when they began posting photos of their camping kitties online.
The hashtag #tinytents turns up Instagram photos of cats lazing in their own tents. They’re apparently even more appealing to them than boxes, according to some cat servants whose felines are taken with the miniature camping shelters.
Because the tents are just smaller versions of real models, they’ve got all the bells and whistles, including bug netting, awnings, tie-back doors and zip-up windows. (There’s also a company that markets them at cat owners for $59.99, but you can find them for 20 bucks on TinyTent.com.)
I think I’m going to have to get one of these for Bud!
Click the thumbnails below for larger versions of the photos:
Feline humor, news and stories about the ongoing adventures of Buddy the Cat.