Thursday, May 07, 2009


There has been a lot of attention paid to swine flu lately... some might even say excessive attention. I certainly might say that, and will tell you so if you give me half an opening. It's excessive in general, but especially in light of the fact that this whole media deluge only serves to deflect attention from other serious problems, issues that the public should be equally aware of.

Case in point: the Van Cortlandt Cat Cluster Phenomenon. Similar to the flu virus, it infects northwestern Bronx households that are predisposed to cat accumulation. It can take several forms as it progresses, but at maturation the affected household will find itself in possession of one orange cat, one black cat, and one tabby cat at minimum. Surrounding households will then tend toward infection as well. Noted VCCCP epidemiologist and neighbor Margarita also notes: "The Cat Cluster Phenomenon does not result in immunity to further outbreaks by collecting a complete set. The virus mutates quickly and renders the host susceptible to adding black-and-white, calico, tortoiseshell, or other felines to the cluster."

Exhibit A: Our cats.
Exhibit B: John's and Margarita's cats (around the corner from our house).
Note that both households were infected independently, without prior knowledge of each other or their cats. Also note the advanced state of John and Margarita's infestation, with the addition of a grey cat.

At present there is no known cure for VCCCP. Any donations readers may want to make will go toward catfood, kitty litter, and little felt catnip mice, and can be forwarded to the VCCCP Foundation through this blog. Paypal is fine, although cash works too.

This has been a public service announcement. Thank you for your time.

(And thank you Margarita for pretty much writing this whole post for me. Is it really only Day 7?)



Blogger Debi said...

That's funny. And a lot of cuteness.

So. Have you spotted YOUR grey cat yet?

7:05 AM  
Blogger Kaethe said...

Ha! I think the virus mutated: we have two gray cats and one jellicle in our household. My in-laws have a variant that requires them to maintain a minimum of six cats and one dog at all times (actual colors and patterns vary).

9:16 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Debi, there are two brand-new black-and-white kittens out on the stairs, and if you kind of squint when you look at them they're almost grey... oh good lord, NO!

Kaethe, don't even get me started on the dog variant strain.

9:48 AM  
Blogger Cara deBeer said...

another variant of the strain has made its way to Somerville, MA area. Diagnostic criteria are as follows: at least one Maine Coon (color unimportant but must shed copiously), one black cat, one reverse tabby in grey and one tortie.

9:57 AM  
Blogger Debi said...

I wish that virus would mutate its way down here. I think I need at least one more dog and a garden cat. Truly.

7:39 PM  
Blogger Sue Dickman said...

I laughed at this and am slightly (but only slightly) sad that the virus hasn't hit Western Mass, at least not my neck of the woods. Though I was awfully tempted a few years ago when the handsome gray cat strolled out from beneath the deck when I was out in the garden one day . . .

He was the closest thing I had to a garden cat. My boys just watch from the windows, alas.

9:45 PM  

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