Monday, April 4, 2016

The food here is terrible!
And such small servings!

Nevertheless, Mrs Spat and Doodleston Strawberry Fairypoo deign to accept the house-apes' offerings of sweetcorn.

In contrast to emetic impairment among rodents, vomiting is not so much an ability for cats as a social obligation, if not an artform. We were reminded of this when Mrs Spat took to excavating the de-kernelled post-dinner corncobs from the compost heap, and swallowing great chunks sheared off with her razor carnassials, that's how much she likes sweetcorn. Chunks which did not digest, and were too large to pass through her valves in a southward direction (Mrs Spat is unclear on the concept of chewing), so they eventually came back up as parts of a furball the size of a kitten. To our relief... for she had lost appetite and we were anticipating another vet-enriching intestinal-blockage emergency.

Which brings up one of the great vexed question of Cuisine for Cats: precisely how much do Jagulars* like Avocados? In Barlow's account, jugulars are sufficiently frugivorous as to have become the primary seed dispersers for the wild avocado, during the time between humans arriving in the Americas and the rapid extinction of previously seed-dispersing megafauna, and the later selection and cultivation of avocados.

Now I am the first to admit that I am no expert on avocado ecology, with much of my knowledge coming from a 1989 documentary (arguably the highpoint of Bill Maher's career). However, Barlow demonstrably wrote many foolish things, and her methods are unsound. When one checks the primary sources like Cook (1982) and van der Pijl (1972), they reveal a dearth of observations and are all "everyone knows that jaguars eat avocados". Borchert et al. (2008) report that avocados were popular with skunks, black bears and canids whereas bobcats ignored them [Borchert speculates that "van der Pijl said jagulars", so mountain lions must surely eat them].

None of this has deterred Creationists from coming up with an entire genre of argumentation citing the dietary proclivities of jagulars to prove that carnivores, even obligate ones, could have survived on a vegetarian diet in the prelapsarian Garden of Eden. And it is pleasant to think of jagulars projective-vomiting avocado pits at one another (because they certainly aren't pooping them out). One more reason to lament the cancellation of Mythbusters.

And are any journals brave enough to publish my paper proving that Zea mays saccharata was dispersed by felids, and probably co-evolved with them? ARE THEY BOG-ROLL. Because censorship. Come and see the censorship inherent in the system!

* Bonus jagulars:
That's what Jagulars always do," said Pooh, much interested. "They call 'Help! Help!' and then when you look up, they drop on you."
In other Cat News:


Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

The very idea of a jaguar passing an avocado pit through its "Eye of Sauron" is terrifying.

H. Rumbold, Master Barber said...

But consider the potential profit in weaponisation!

Smut Clyde said...

Just think of the possible flag designs for my Central American libertarian utopian state!

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

There are a number of Avocado Republic of Jagular flags that one might imagine.

Avocado's number, probably.

rhwombat said...

"6.022140857(74)×10^23 green Jagulars, up on the pole,
6.022140857(74)×10^23 green Jagulars, up on the pole,
but, if one green Jagular should accidentally fall,
There'd be (6.022140857(74)×10^23)-1 green Jagulars up on the pole...."

Also - another potential future Un ZudUtopian Central American Republic of Smut flag:

Smut Clyde said...

Rhwombat is unclear on the recipe for a guaca mole.

rhwombat said...

^ "First, catch your guaca."

...also, I believe it is spelt "huaca" - as in huaca mole

Anonymous said...

I had always thought that 'Halima Hidalgo' had the whiff of the sock puppet about her social network/marketing existence.