GLOUCESTERSHIRE, United Kingdom — The alleged phenomena of big cats stalking the forests and outskirts of villages in the UK turned out to be a hoax this week after authorities caught an American feline planting “evidence” near the A40.
The perpetrator, who goes by the names Buddy the Cat, Kinich Bajo, The Buddinese Tiger and several other monikers, was spotted at the edge of the Forest of Dean using a ladder to create claw marks at roughly tiger height, Detective Inspector Alistair Clarke said.
When he realized he’d been made, the gray tabby cat yelled “Oh shit!” then bolted down the ladder and into the forest, Clarke told reporters.
Police called in a K9 unit, which was able to track a trail of crumbs and discarded turkey bones to a clearing where authorities discovered non-toxic black paint, a fog machine and a copy of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 1977 docudrama Pumping Iron.
“It’s our belief that the suspect painted himself black, played prerecorded clips of various big cat roars, then posed menacingly amid the fog for the benefit of locals, mostly drunks stumbling out of local pubs,” Clarke said. “Choosing inveterate drunks as his primary witnesses ensured the resulting smartphone camera footage would be grainy, shaky and inconclusive, adding to the legend and mystique of phantom big cats in the countryside.”
Asked by a reporter whether Buddy’s dedication to weightlifting contributed to locals misidentifying him as a big cat, Clarke shook his head.
“We don’t think so, no,” he said. “Despite his apparent obsession with bulking up and the 63 bottles of protein powder we recovered, the suspect remains a tiny little stinker, which is why he carefully revealed himself only to the thoroughly inebriated.”
Buddy the Cat remained in a local lock-up awaiting extradition back to the US. His human told reporters the feline hadn’t said much about his predicament.
“He’s complained loudly about the food and said the British should be thanking him for increasing tourism to southern England, but other than that he’s kept a lid on his thoughts,” Big Buddy said.
In the meantime, the South Carolina state police forensics division and detectives from several US police departments have been in contact with UK authorities after similarities emerged between the fake big cat sightings and a series of bizarre crop circles in the US.
“We also found turkey bones and crumbs scattered around the crop circles, but at the time our working theory was that we were dealing with aliens who had a taste for turkey,” said one law enforcement official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. “Now we believe our cases may be connected to the UK hoax.”
When I adopted Buddy I never thought I’d have such a talkative and friendly cat. Or one who seems to be an expert on human psychology, for that matter.
The little guy has made a habit of following me to the kitchen, even rousing himself from naps the instant he hears the fridge door opening, the rustling of a bag or the clunk of a closing cabinet.
Employing a different strategy than the meow-heavy, “FEED ME NOW!” style he uses at meal time, he sits in the doorway of the kitchen and watches me silently. If I fail to retrieve a snack for him, he doesn’t move.
Last night I’d forgotten to get him something and when I set my cereal bowl down on the coffee table and sank back into the couch, I looked over and saw Bud still sitting in the kitchen doorway, managing to simultaneously look sad and silently incriminating with his big green eyes.
“Where’s mine, dude? Dude, where’s mine?” he seems to say, pouring it on thick. “I thought we did everything together, yet here you are enjoying a snack while your best little Buddy is standing just a few feet away, feeling betrayed as you eat your Frosted Flakes. I guess we weren’t best buddies after all.”
Because I can’t stand that incriminating look and I know the situation will escalate if I don’t act, I dutifully rise from the couch and assume my responsibility as Bud’s faithful human servant, fetching some of his favorite dental treats.
His tail curls into a happy question mark and he trills his happiness.
“Guilty? Betrayed? Ah, all forgotten! Difficulties are dissolved into mere misunderstandings where snacks are concerned, my human friend!”
Maybe I’m overthinking it. Maybe I’m anthropomorphizing the little guy. Or maybe he really is a master of human psychology who can manipulate human emotions with the twist of his paw.
Some people think felines are incapable of telling time. Cats disagree. And as anyone who has ever had the honor of serving a furry friend knows, cats are exceptional time keepers who like to adhere to strict schedules and like their meals delivered with the precision of the finest Swiss timepieces. To prove it, we asked six random cats if they know what time it is.
“It’s been 4 hours, 13 minutes and 22 seconds since my last meal, which was an unsatisfying salmon pâté . Do better, human.” – Parmesan, 8
“It’s yums o’clock!” – Pepper, 4 1/2 months
“It’s nap time. Again.” – BA Baracus, 4
“It is time for you to get off your lazy behind and fetch me something tasty.” – Shadow, 5
“In exactly 12 minutes it will be time for me to visit the neighbor for third breakfast! Then in another hour, first lunch at the nice lady’s house down the street!” – Clover, 7
“What is time, if not a way to mark the wonderful meals enjoyed, the scrumptilicious snacks devoured, the moments of opportunity when a human plate goes unattended? Wait. Did I say the last part out loud?” – Remontoire, 2
Happy birthday to us, happy birthday to us! Happy birthday dear Buddies, happy birthday to us!
We received a notification from WordPress congratulating us on four years with WordPress, although this blog isn’t technically four years old. It started as a place for my random scribbles about Buddy and as a sort of travelogue for my trip to Japan, and it wasn’t until September of 2019 that I registered the domain and started blogging in earnest, transforming the site into the Pain In The Bud we all know and love today.
Over the last few years we’ve been fortunate enough to merit the attention of critics, who have lavished praise on us:
“There’s a reason young kittens the world over have posters of Buddy on their walls. He’s effortlessly charming, possessed of inimitable wit and he’s got one hell of a singing voice.” – Fat Cats magazine
“An indictment of the American education system. I feel dumber for having read it.” – Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine’s guide to the Worst Blogs On The Internet
“An extraordinary blog focused on an exceptional cat whose wit is sharper than Valyrian steel. Endlessly entertaining.” – The Buddesian Times
“A catnip junkie and the human who enables him. Gives all cats a bad rep.” – Veterinary Association of America
“Has there ever been a cat more handsome and interesting than Buddy? That’s a rhetorical question, by the way.” – The Chronicle of Higher Buddy
“It’s difficult to tell who’s the bigger moron, the human or the cat. They enable each other, launching their idiotic schemes to take over the world and horde its turkey. Thankfully they’re as incompetent as they are clueless.” – Jefferson Nebula, host of My Cat From Hades
Of course we would not be here if not for our readers. Thanks for finding us, sending us your ideas and most of all, feeding Buddy’s ego by telling him what a charming, interesting and ferocious tiger he is.
On a related note, since I’m not sure of Buddy’s exact birth date, we celebrate his birthday and adoptiversary around the third weekend of April.
Happy birthday, Bud!
How the heck is the little guy nine years old? That doesn’t seem possible. The age equivalency chart says that’s the equivalent of 52 human years, but Bud still has a spring in his stride, meows like a little baby and likes playing with his toys, especially the game called “Mighty Hunter” in which I manipulate wand toys like prey and he ambushes them. Since he doesn’t know he’s supposed to deliver a “kill bite” and hasn’t made the connection that hunting = food, he happily bobbles the toy with his front paws while bouncing around on his feet, then rushes to cover to reset the game.
I will not dwell on or speculate about how long he’ll be with us because I turn into a blubbering mess despite being a grown ass man, so I’ll just say I’m extremely grateful that he’s healthy and happy, and I’ll continue to enjoy every minute with him.
Except when he meows really annoyingly when his food is late. And when he wakes me up by grooming my face. Oh, and his insistence on walking 1/10th of a stride in front of me so I’m always in danger of tripping on him. Also, when he goes into super annoying determined mode and tries to wake me by punching the door flap on his litter box, knowing the squeak of the hinges drives me crazy.
He is very accomplished at annoying me, but that’s okay. He’s my little Buddy.
Plagiarized, you say?
Thanks to those of you who alerted us to a PITB story that was plagiarized by a pet-focused site recently. We’re aware of it, and unfortunately it’s not the first time.
It takes a lot of time and effort to create readable, entertaining content, and there are people who simply don’t care and help themselves to the content without scruples. Almost all of them are based in countries whose authorities don’t respect US intellectual property rights and won’t cooperate with any takedown notices or legal threats.
The Drudge Report, for example, famously links to DNUYZ, a site run by an Armenian guy who steals content from the New York Times, Washington Post, The Atlantic, The Financial Times and other news sites. Google canceled DNUYZ’s AdSense account, but the operator simply signed up with a different ad server, and he makes a tidy profit by stealing content en masse.
If major media organizations can’t stop this nonsense, I have no hope. I’ve had some luck petitioning sites that host third-party content, but many don’t respond and I don’t even get an apology from those who do acknowledge that my content was posted to their sites, earning them pageviews and ad revenue.
There is a way you can help, however. Every time someone links to a PITB article, it incrementally increases our legitimacy in the eyes of Google, and that’s important because it means PITB shows up first when people search for an article or topic on this site, rather than the plagiarized versions copied by content scrapers in countries like India and Russia.
I am not asking people to randomly link to PITB. That wouldn’t help anyway. However, if there’s a story you really like, consider sharing it on social media and help spread the word. Organic virality is the name of the game, and Buddy and I think we do offer something relatively unique in the cat-o-sphere with a blog from a dudely perspective with a focus on absurdist cat humor, big cat conservation and important news stories that impact our furry little friends.
And if that’s not reason enough, well, just look at him. He’s a sexy beast, and surely your cat-loving friends would be angry with you if you did not tell them all about Buddy and his adventures. Don’t make them upset. Do them a solid and invite them to the Wonderful World of Buddy!
BUDAPEST, Hungary — Renowned magician The Great Buddini will make a triumphant return to the city this summer with a limited run of performances at the historic Thália Színház, his publicist announced on Friday.
The Great Buddini electrified audiences in his last appearance in Budapest, when he made entire bag of Blue Buffalo Bursts vanish, then conjured up a roast turkey before making it disappear again. In all, he made 17 different types of food dematerialize into his mouth during a thrilling and varied performance.
“You are a genius, good sir!” an audience member at one of the Budapest performances proclaimed. “Tell us, how do you do it?”
The Great Buddini doffed his cap and let out an enormous belch.
“A magician never *burp* gives away his s-sec– *burp* — secrets,” he said. “Now if you’ll excuse me, we’ll have a brief intermission. Should be no longer than 10, maybe 15 minutes.”
The curtains drew tight and the pit orchestra began playing as members of the audience drifted over to the concession counter, but someone had forgotten to mute Buddini’s mic, and he could be heard muttering foul oaths, straining mightily and shoveling litter.
“I thought we’d resume with an examination of what is real and what is not,” The Great Buddini told the audience after they’d returned to their seats and the lights had dimmed once again. “Does the red dot exist, or is it merely an illusion?”
Buddini slapped a paw down onto the wooden stage floor, then drew astonished gasps as he held it up, with the elusive red dot pinned between two claws.
“They said it could not be done!” exclaimed a cat in the fifth row. “All hail The Great Buddini!’
“All hail The Great Buddini!” the audience repeated.
Buddini’s 2022 tour took him around the world before finally returning to his native New York, where audiences fainted with disbelief and a New York Times critic declared the magician was “an unrivaled master of sleight of paw.”
Despite near-universal acclaim, some took issue with The Great Buddini’s performances. A scathing review in the New York Post took aim at “imbeciles” who were “paying to watch a chubby cat pig out on snacks on a stage.”
The Great Buddini’s fans were unperturbed.
“Are they trying to say there’s no magic involved in Buddini making an entire bag of moist treats disappear into his mouth?” asked Otis, a 10-year-old orange tabby. “Because I assure you, it’s absolutely magical!”
Feline humor, news and stories about the ongoing adventures of Buddy the Cat.