There’s a culture war going on out there, and it’s not the so-called War on Christmas that paranoid, gun-carrying, truck-driving Fox Newsers fabricate every December when they hear a non-white person say “Happy Holidays.” Nor is it the war waged by latte-sipping, Prius-driving, pedantic, coastal-dwelling college professors trying to outlaw bacon and push solar-powered toothbrushes on innocent school children.
No, this culture war is about cats — and more specifically, cat people. It’s about commodities. Housewares. Clothing. Artwork. And yes, cats. You’ve heard me mention this cultural war before, like when I interviewed Susan Michals about her Cat Art Show 2 in Los Angeles earlier this year. To borrow (and bend, and italicize) a phrase from me:
This is about providing ammunition (not the kind that explodes, mind you) for cat people to transcend the flashy gaudy discount shopping-mall annex of ridicule and occupy a classy storefront of style, confidence, and respect.
One step on that journey involves dishes. Yes, dishes. And, okay, a candle too. But mostly dishes.
See, an English person or company calling her(or it)self Charlotte Clark Designer Maker has some feline cultural ammunition that would make the most withdrawn Goth kid in the back of the classroom take off his headphones and … well … not smile exactly, but at least say, “Hey, whatcha got there?” (Do Goth kids talk like that? I have no idea.) It also would make grownups (like me) look up the dollars-to-pounds exchange rate to see how many of these items we can afford until our next paycheck.
Charlotte Clark offers several cat items as well as equally macabre, skeletal, smart-alecky items depicting dinosaurs, bunnies, birds, bats, humans, and anatomically correct hearts. Here are some of the cat items. (Some prices vary depending on the type of ceramic.)
The cat represented here seems to be named Trick or Treat. The mirrored cat’s poses suggest he’s guarding the teapot against mediocrity and people wearing beige.
£35 to £45 ($51 to $66)
Here’s Trick or Treat again posing, this time on a jug. Here he shows off his full range of bones, gears, flowers, and tapestries.
Judging by the aspect ratio, this appears to be Trick or Treat’s kitten or chubby sibling. The mug reminds me of the (alleged) Turkish proverb: Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.
£12.50 to £14.50 ($18 to $21)
Here’s a good post-breakup mug if you’ve just ended a relationship with a man. The cat seems to reject the gent’s greeting — whatEVER! You could look at this and say to your ex, after a good cry, “I’m glad you’re gone! My cat never liked you anyway!” Once you get over Mr. Wrong, though, keep this mug. It would make a good present for a newly divorced friend or — this just occurred to me — a parting gift for your next breakup-ee. (Holy Toledo.)
Crazy cat lady? Ha! Try crazy cat man! Any cultural warrior will tell you that gender equity is very cool in the cat world (or any world).
Look closely at the inside of the mug. Just below “I love you,” you’ll see “I peed on your bed.” You can choose from among several cat portraits and crimes (others include “Here’s a dead bird” and “I sicked on the carpet”). You can also get your cat’s name on the handle (or, for that matter, you own name — maybe it was you who brought in that dead bird).
We’ve told you about PyroPets Candles before. To borrow a British phrase, these candles are f’ing brilliant. When they burn down, they reveal something truly creepy.
Not only a cat skull …
… but a whole cat skeleton.
So there you have it, cultural warriors. Now you know that confidence and respect can take the form of burning metal cat skeletons and ceramics. Get some of these for the Halloween dinner party you’re about to start planning and give all us cat people a good name.
Also: My birthday is May 24. I’m just sayin’.