When you’re a man such as Cat Dandy, every cocktail presents a paradox. I’ve spent years procuring glassware and barware I love, then perfecting the types and blends of alcohol and mixer to create a small collection of drinks that are things of beauty. Before I was even of legal drinking age, people complimented me on my martinis (which I learned to make by watching my dad, a career Navy man, and later perfected with the help of my lovely and talented fianc├®e, Daphne). People have since sung praises for the flavor and presentation of my cosmopolitan, lemon drop, rusty nail, and even simple concoctions such as the gin and tonic. (My secret for the G-and-T? Lots of fresh lemon juice rather than the sweetened stuff, and diet tonic. It makes a world of difference.) Earlier this year, I conspired with Liz Acosta, our social media guru, to make a cat-themed cocktail called Lil BUB’s Lil Glub for an at-work competition. It looked like this:
Cocktails can be lovely things. So, where’s the paradox? First, it’s about presentation. A drink’s level of beauty and deliciousness can’t conceal the hard fact that every cocktail contributes to its human’s slurred speech, loss of equilibrium, and potential spillage. The hazard increases if you’re dressed in fabulous clothes, as I usually am when tending bar for guests at home or receiving cocktails at the hand of another host elsewhere.
A second paradox is about composure, yet it’s not always bad: Every cocktail, no matter how tasty or fancy, contributes to a different kind of spillage — emotional information that sober selves would have probably held in check. In this state of mind, I’ve solidified friendships, expressed romantic interests, erased grudges, and found communal catharsis.
[Disclaimer: Drinking and drunkennes aren’t always fun or funny, and problem drinking is a big problem for a lot more people than the drinkers. I do take this seriously. But today I’m having fun with the concept. So please bear with me.]
Regardless of the cocktail or occasion, I’ve never gushed forth on my love for cats while intoxicated. Some guys have, however — enough in fact for BuzzFeed to make the video I’ll show you below. In it, we bypass pretensions on presentation and get right to the juice. The title even seems inebriated in its simplicity: “Drunk Dudes Talk About Their Cats.”
That’s Henry in the title photo. He’s accompanied by Danny, Dale, Ryan, and Zach in the video. I have a feeling these are college students, because there’s repeated reference to having cats “back home.” Nonetheless, this video is funny, but it’s not a joke — namely, it’s not a group of drunkards making fun of the idea of having cats and the guys who have them. Rather, an unseen interviewer poses simple, open-ended questions about cats and catches these otherwise average guys in unguarded moments. It’s by turns comical, touching, and revealing in ways its subjects probably didn’t intend.
Here’s my second disclaimer: The video is also profoundly profane. I’ve worked as a writer and editor for nearly 25 years, and I believe there’s room (and need) in language for foulspeak. If you disagree, then avoid the video below because you’ll get an earful, believe me. If you appreciate (or can tolerate) foul language, though, the video has its redeeming qualities.
Here are some highlights:
The first question put to the Panel of Inebriates is, “Are you a cat person?”
Danny, owner of three cats, says, “I am half a cat away … from being a crazy cat lady.”
Adds Zach, who (like Cat Dandy) presents slightly femmy, “I’m drunk and I love cats. What more do you need to know?”
With a half-comical air, he continues, “It pisses me off when people say that cats are sh***y. No. If you have a sh***y cat, it’s because you’re a sh***y person — that’s just science!”
Says cover-boy Henry, “Cats get a bad rap.”
The Tipsy Cat Men are asked next, “What’s special about your cat?”
Henry describes his cat, Simon, as cross-eyed and dumb.
“But he has a quiet, dumb dignity,” Henry says. “He’s like the Forrest Gump of cats.”
There’s not a hint of disdain or dismissal in Henry’s words. It’s clear he loves Simon for just who and what he is.
Dale, who speculates that his first word as a child was “kitty,” speaks next.
“I’ll have the thought that I miss Ellie, and then I’ll have the thought that I should text her,” he says, “and then immediately I have the thought that, like, cats can’t text.”
Some of the Fabulous Feline Five have cats with them, whereas some have only photos.
Zach shows a photo of his cat on his smartphone and says, “He lives in New York, I live in California, I love my cat so much, and I miss him so much. He’s terrifying to most people, but he’s adorable to me, he’s a f***ing warrior.”
The Brew Boys are asked, “If your cats could magically talk, what would you say to them?”
Henry is first, and his answer is spoken quickly and comically, yet it’s revealing nonetheless.
“I’d be, like, ‘Simon, I was a really awkward teenager,’ right?” says Henry. “And he’d be like, ‘I’m a dummy, I don’t know what’s happening anywhere.'”
Again Henry is stark and serious (if not sober). He knows we can’t expect a cat to understand complex human social situations, but it seems he loves Simon almost because of this, rather than in spite of it.
More laughs ensue.
“Why do you watch me on the toilet? It’s really embarrassing,” says Danny.
Zach adds his final thoughts: “I’ve said I love you to my cat more than I have to any person. I kiss my cat a lot. I don’t know if that shows a deficiency in my life.”
Not in my world — nor in the world of many other men who enjoy cocktails and the love of a good cat.
Here’s the video itself (again, watch only if you can endure severe profanity):
Do you know a man who loves cats? Have you ever gone drinking with that man? Did he express his love for cats? Or maybe you were that man. Have you ever revealed your love of cats, while drinking or otherwise? Tell me in the comments.
It doesn’t take a fancy cocktail for Cat Dandy to say “I love you” to Thomas:
About Keith Bowers: This broad-shouldered, bald-headed, leather-clad motorcyclist also has passions for sharp clothing, silver accessories, great writing, the arts, and cats. This career journalist loves painting, sculpting, photographing, and getting on stage. He once was called “a high-powered mutant,” which also describes his cat, Thomas. He is senior editor at Catster.