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We Talk to the Artist Behind “The Adventures of Business Cat”

Tom Fonder's web comic depicts a business-savvy feline living in the corporate world.

Phillip Mlynar  |  Dec 30th 2014


Do you ever take a look over at your cat — who, for the basis of this scenario, is happily dozing away on the sofa at 2:43 p.m. — and think, “Hmm, that feline would make one shrewd business person?” Well, that’s exactly what comic strip artist Tom Fonder did one day as he came up with The Adventures of Business Cat. You can check the comic out online — and you should, being that it offers a canny cat’s take on the corporate office world.

After rummaging through the online archives of Business Cat, I spoke to Tom about how a kitty milks the corporate cash cow, the politics of feline office attire, and Business Cat’s fabled golden yacht.

Catster: How did you come up with the idea for Business Cat?

Tom Fonder: The idea for Business Cat began as a quick throwaway gag in my other webcomic series, Happy Jar. I was struggling to come up with something to put up that day so I asked my partner, Rachael, to come up with a comic on the fly as a sort of joke. I pressed her to come up with three panels within the space of ten seconds each and the result, as so often happens when I attempt this approach with her, was a comic centered entirely around whatever our cat, Curzon, was doing at the time. In this case, he was sleeping.

“Panel one. Go.”

“There’s a cat. He’s sleeping.”

“Panel two.”

“He’s dreaming about something. He looks pleased.”

“Panel three. What is he dreaming about?”

There was a brief pause.

“He has a job.”

We instantly found this exchange to be hilarious for some reason, and I decided to go ahead and make the strip even though I was pretty sure that no one else would find this funny. The result is the following comic:

From there, I came up with a follow-up comic that would eventually become the first official Adventures of Business Cat strip. The follow up comic went sort of viral around certain parts of the Internet and the rest is history.

What are Business Cat’s best tips for most effectively milking the corporate cash cow?

Order someone else to do all the heavy milking for you and make sure they bring it back on a saucer. Your time is better spent sleeping and sitting on the spacebar key of your laptop. If something is important, a human will do it for you.

How does Business Cat feel about business buzz words?

He doesn’t particularly understand any of them, but so long as someone is giving him attention he’s happy to stare blankly at their face and listen to whatever sounds their mouth makes.

Which businessmen does Business Cat look up to?

YouTube CEO, Susan Wojcicki, for helping to bring the voice of his people to the masses and bird videos to his desktop. Also, the Monopoly Guy — there’s always great bits and pieces to scatter around in those boxes.

If Business Cat had to start his career again with only $20 to his name, how would he go about investing or using the money?

Start by investing all $20 in some premium grade cat kibble. It’s tough to do business on an empty stomach. From there, solicit others for money and shelter by rubbing against their legs and purring. Should this fail to do the trick, meow at them until they give in. Persistence is key.

It’s said that Business Cat has a 16kt gold yacht. What sort of amenities does it have?

The usual amenities, really: Milk on tap, scratching pole, litter tray filled with shredded dollar bills. You know, the general 16kt gold yacht stuff.

One of the strips seems to suggest that Business Cat is having some sort of romantic tryst with his secretary, Janet. Is there any truth in this rumor?

Let’s just say that all will soon be revealed regarding the nature of Business Cat’s relationship with his secretaries.

Finally, how does Business Cat feel about casual Fridays?

It’s his favorite day of the week; a release from the trappings of the modern day work environment. Business suits are a game you must play to get by in the human world. Birthday suits are a far more comfortable alternative.

Read more about cat cartoons:

About Phillip Mlynar: The self-appointed world’s foremost expert on rappers’ cats. When not penning posts on rap music, he can be found building DIY cat towers for his adopted domestic shorthair, Mimosa, and collecting Le Creuset cookware (in red). He has also invented cat sushi, but it’s not quite what you think it is.