How Some of the Internet’s Favorite Cats Celebrated the New Year


Hi, all ÔÇö we’ve got some exciting news. Stephanie Harwin, who writes one of our favorite cat blogs, Catsparella, will be covering kitty style and cats in pop culture for us a few times a week here on Catster. For her first column, she fills us in on how cats around the world rang in the new year. Please give her a warm welcome! ÔÇö Your Friendly Neighborhood Catster Editors

Just like their human counterparts, kitties around the world were busy saying sayonara to 2011 with New Year’s Eve celebrations of their own. Maru, Nyan Cat, and Shironeko partied hard, while comedian Ricky Gervais sent out well wishes for 2012 to his followers, with the help of a feline friend. Elsewhere, Larry the Downing Street Cat found himself back in the British tabloids, while cats playing videogames were having the best week ever. Like most of us, this week’s cats in pop culture news are still recovering from their post-holiday catnip hangovers.

Maru, the Internet’s most beloved Scottish Fold, has been busy celebrating Oshogatsu, otherwise known as Japanese New Year.

He wasted no time getting cozy in his fancy new cat dome, surrounded by traditional new year’s decorations like the kadomatsu (gate pine) and kagami mochi (rice cakes). Over on Catsparella, I put together a collection of the best Maru moments of 2011, highlighting his most memorable photos and videos.

The relaxed cats of the Shironeko blog, another Japanese export, celebrated the holidays in their typical laid-back style.

Adding a touch of sparkle to the sleepy festivities were some shiny party hats they kept in place for all of 10 seconds (a new world record, by my count).

My favorite is the kitty in the green hat, who can only halfheartedly muster the will to remove it, even as it comically falls in front of his face. This is a bit like what New Year’s Eve looked like at my house, when we all ate and drank too much, and were ready to pass out by 11 p.m.

Last year was the year that PRGuitarman brought Nyan Cat to life, so it was only fitting that the popular meme, inspired by a real-life Russian Blue named Marty, ushered in 2012 by ditching his strawberry Pop-Tart in favor of some glitzier NYE apparel.

Lady Gaga may have tried to steal the show in her giant crystal ball mask when she helped New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg drop the ball in Times Square on Saturday night, but she’s still got nothing on this rosy-faced kitty, soaring through the sky with a rainbow gloriously trailing out of its rear.

Turning an eye to the world of celebrity cat news, did you know that comedian Ricky Gervais is a passionate animal rights supporter and cat lover?

Over the holidays, he took to his Twitter account to share several pictures of his gorgeous blue-eyed cat, Ollie. On Saturday, Gervais tweeted this beautiful close-up of the Siamese, along with the message, “Believe in yourself. Be kind. Have fun. Do your best. And respect the unconditional beauty of nature. Happy new year.”

Left out in the cold? Controversy erupted in Britain last week over reports that Larry, resident cat of 10 Downing Street and the “Chief Mouser to the Cabinet Office,” had been banned from setting paw inside Prime Minister David Cameron’s newly renovated residence.

Photo via: the Prime Minister’s Office

While supporters claim that the move downgrades the cat to second-class kitizen status, a spokesperson insists that the ban was more of a practical one than a personal affront, saying, “David and his children are very keen on Larry. But it is a flat within an office, so it is difficult. If he was in it, he wouldn’t be able to get into the rest of the building, where he has the run of the place. He wouldn’t be able to access the rats.”

Fruit Ninja, the popular videogame where players rack up points by slicing up fruit with a swipe of their fingers, has just received another glowing endorsement, this time of the feline variety.

Proving once again the iPad’s true marketing potential as the world’s most expensive cat toy, watch as this little orange kitty goes bananas using its paws to frantically chop through the flying fruit, ultimately achieving a berry high score of 128.

Cats are natural Tetris players, always trying to find the best place to land and make themselves comfortable, whether they fit in or not.

This adorable illustration from the TEGAKI Blog was hot on Tumblr this week, thanks to the ingenious idea of replacing classic Tetriminos with multicolored kitties who happily cling together as they purrfectly fall into place.

About the Author: Stephanie Harwin is the founder of, an award-winning cat culture blog dedicated to her passion for finding and sharing all of the coolest cat-related content online. Read more about her over here.

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