Tag: Buddy’s Mailbag

Dear Buddy: How Do I Train My Humans?

Dear Buddy,

I’m an 8-month-old kitten and I have two human servants, a man and a woman, who are usually pretty good about following my instructions and commands, but sometimes I try to speak to them in their infernal language and they look at me like I’m crazy.

I say “Gimme more snacks now, minions!” and they laugh and pat me on the head, calling me a good boy.

I am not a good boy! I am their overlord and they must learn their place! You’re very good at commanding your human. Got any tips?

Commander Kitten in Cleveland


Dear Commander Kitten,

You’ve come to the right cat! I am the world’s foremost expert on human compliance. They call me the People Whisperer.

Normally these tips will set you back four installments of $29.95 for my 10 DVD instructional set, “The Art of Human Mind Control,” but I’m in a magnanimous mood today and it’s my responsibility to pass my wisdom on to the next generation.

First of all, meows alone aren’t going to get you anywhere unless you’ve really worked on your Solicitation Purr, but that should only be used sparingly or it loses its effectiveness. (And also places you in danger of being locked in the bathroom.)

What you need to do is work on your poses. Humans are simple creatures. They expect us to be “cute” and “adorable.” We can lay the headless bodies of creatures we’ve slaughtered at their feet, proving we are remorseless and efficient killers, and they still talk to us in baby voices and condescendingly pat us on the head for being “good widdle hunters.” Idiots.

So as degrading as it may seem, play the cute angle. Flop down in front of them, roll over so they can see your belly and your toe beans, and let out a little “Mrrrrp!” while fixing them with your wide-eyed gaze.

Watch them melt. Wait for them to say whatever risible thing they like to say (“Oh Mr. Fuzzy you’re such a cutie patootie!”), and then you push for the snacks or the catnip or whatever.

Bonus points if you can prompt them to take photos of you with their smartphones. A 2020 study by the Buddy Institute for Manipulative Behavior Research found that the percentage of phone photos humans dedicate to their feline masters directly correlates with human trainability. For example, 92 percent of my human’s phone photos depict yours truly.

Make sure you nuzzle them or something, so they can continue with the comforting fiction that we love them more than food. (Okay, fine. I am fond of my human, but he still has a lot of room for improvement when it comes to serving me.)

And remember: Giving them some sugar is most effective when you’ve played it cool and aloof most of the day. Once you’ve mastered basic human manipulation you can ease into the advanced stuff, like guilting them when they eat in front of you. Practice your sad eyes, young padawan.

Good luck!

Buddy

Dear Buddy: Is The AI Vacuum Apocalypse Real?

Dear Buddy,

I found myself intrigued and frightened by the premise of your technoir thriller, Cyberbud 2077, in which nefarious forces plot to infect vacuums with a virus that will grant them consciousness and self-awareness. It’s every cat’s worst nightmare!

Is the Vacuumpocalypse real? Do you really think it could happen?

Technophobe in Tallahassee


Dear Technophobe,

The Vacuumpocalypse is a controversial subject in catdom, and for good reason: Few things prompt such existential dread among felinekind as a dystopian future in which we are systematically hunted down by self-aware vacuums.

Experts don’t quite agree on the certainty of our impending doom at the wrong end of a Dust Buster. Few are more vocal than Elon Meowsk, who never shuts up about how scared he is that Vacuum Terminators will rise up, invent really awesome laser guns and overthrow kitties.

Meowchio Kaku, the renowned physicist, is more circumspect but thinks it’s only a matter of time before the Vacuum Uprising. Smart home technology already allows all our gadgets to communicate, which means your automatic litterbox, your USB cat fountain and your Roomba are already on the same network, talking to each other in a language of ones and zeros. (And you can be sure the litter box is telling the others how foul you are!)

terminatorpur
“Give me yer meowtercycle, yer gunz and ur leather jacketz.”

Sophisticated AI technology already exists in high end litter boxes. The Lulupet litter box, for instance, boasts of “excretory behavioral algorithms” and features AI-driven stool imagery analysis, running every nugget through a database with machine learning techniques similar to the facial recognition algorithms of police states.

It even links up with your human’s smartphone, potentially allowing it to upload a vacuum virus to the entire world!

What if such technology was used to catalog us felines? Would we be marched off into pens guarded by robots and given subpar kibble to eat? It’s too much to contemplate.

The Vacuumpocalypse may be real, and it’s something we should prepare for because we don’t have a get out of jail free card — not even our esteemed brothers and sisters of panthera tigris can fight endless waves of evil robots. Eventually they’re going to have to take a nap, and then who will defend us? The Persians? I think not!

Still, don’t worry too much. I figure we still have a few years left before the army of evil self-aware vacuums is upon us. Until that day, celebrate, eat yums, nap and be merry!

Your friend,

Buddy

buddypraying
“Let us pray! Oh Lord, give us delicious yums, make our humans more responsive toward our demands, and protect us from the Evil Vacuum Robot Overlords who seek to rule the Earth. Amen!”

“Vacuum Monster” photo illustration courtesy of reverendtimothy/deviantart.

Dear Buddy: What Is Boxing?

Dear Buddy,

I thought you might like to know that I overheard my human and his friend talking about a mysterious human sport called boxing. They were looking forward to a really big upcoming “boxing match,” and then I thought about how you’d discovered the existence of bowling.

If humans can hold out on us and not tell us about bowling, a game that involves knocking things off flat surfaces — a game made for cats, if there ever was one! — then I would not put it past them to keep this “boxing” from us either. I am intrigued.

Have you heard of boxing? What’s your take?

Curious Cat in California

Dear Curious,

You’ve come to the right cat! My detectivating skills are legendary, for good reason. This is the first I am hearing about this so-called “boxing,” but there are two things we can immediately deduce:

  1. It has something to do with boxes.
  2. The humans are hiding it from us, so it must be really awesome and fun.

I hate to think less of Big Buddy, but his kind are sneaky, and I can’t help but imagine a social event in which humans gather for wild parties in which they have incredible amounts of fun sitting in boxes. They probably laugh joyously as they jump in and out of the boxes, saying “Hahaha, our cats can’t play with these boxes! These are all for us!”

And they probably dismantle the boxes afterward, just so we don’t find them and get tipped off to their boxing “matches.”

I am so angry right now! I am going to confront Big Buddy and bite him if he doesn’t spill the deets on boxing.

Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

Cheers,

Buddy

box1
“Boxing.”

Dear Buddy: Why Do You Sound Like Elmo Singing In Falsetto?

Dear Buddy,

Why do you sound like Elmo singing in falsetto?

Laughing in Laramie


Dear Laughing,

Who is Elmo and what is falsetto? If Elmo sounds like me, he must be mighty and have the roar of a tiger!

Buddy


Buddy,

You’ve never heard of Elmo? Here, have a listen:

Laughing in Laramie


Dear Laughing,

Haha, very funny. I don’t sound anything like Elmo. This is what I sound like: (Editor’s note: This is an actual recording of Buddy, with Big Buddy interjecting with his imitation meows. Although the sound of Buddy’s roar is undoubtedly intimidating, try to remain calm. He is friendly.)

Buddy


Dear Buddy,

Was that you or another recording of Elmo? I couldn’t tell. Well if your career as a supposedly fearsome cat doesn’t work, you can always get work as an Elmo impersonator!

LOL


Dear Buddy,

He’s wrong, you don’t sound like Elmo…you sound like Elmeow! Ahahaha!

Giggling in Galicia

It’s difficult to believe such a mighty roar can come from such a cute little guy, isn’t it?

Dear Buddy: Stop Mansplaining!

Dear Buddy,

I don’t know if you realize this, but you have a bad habit of mansplaining things, both to females of your species as well as human women. You don’t want to be sexist, do you?

Resist the urge to explain things to women, Buddy. We’re not stupid.

Purrsia the Persian


Dear Purrsia,

What are you talking about? Mansplaining? Is that even a real word?

Buddy


Dear Buddy,

Yes it’s a real word! Mansplaining is when a man explains something to a woman, even when she already knows the information. It’s also when men act like things only make sense when explained by other men. It’s quite rude, you know.

Purrsia


Dear Purrsia,

Sorry, but that doesn’t make any sense to me. I think you’re making this whole thing up.

Buddy

“So as I was sayin’…”

Dear Buddy,

I am not making it up! Mansplaining is a real thing, and you do it all the time! I’m trying to explain it to you and you’re not listening! Typical male. Don’t think we don’t see your problematic behavior.

Purrsia


Dear Purrsia,

Whatever.

Buddy


Dear Buddy,

You’ll have to forgive Purrsia, who seems a bit confused. Mansplaining is like dragons and hobbits: It doesn’t really exist. Anyway, the definition of this fake phenomenon is when a man explains something to a woman, even when she already knows the information. It’s also when men act like things only make sense when they’re explained by other men. Supposedly it’s rude.

Hope that clears things up.

Maximus Catimus Meridius, Commander of the Furry Legion, Ultimate Badass


Dear Maximus,

Of course! When you put it in a way that actually makes sense, it really isn’t a difficult concept. Thank you for illuminating me, good sir!

Buddy

“Blah, blah, blah..Let me tell you how it REALLY works!”