News you need: kitty thief!

If you haven’t seen this yet, watch the amazingness! A cat in San Mateo is a total klepto! Are the children not having nightmares yet? I don’t care, I want a cute klepto cat!


This cat lives in a tree! Holy cannoli, I’m in love with a tree cat. The cat was actually born in the tree and then the mother brought all the kittens down EXCEPT little Almond here. Why? So sad. Luckily, Ron Venden, who lives by the tree, started taking care of the little kitty. He brings it meatloaf and built it a cute little shelter—a tree fort! Jealous. He even put a dry-food feeder up there! I know, you are like, “Um, it was a kitten, why didn’t he just pick it up and take it out of the dang tree?” But he says he’s tried a few times and Almond gets scratchy. Oh, that’s just like Almond! Silly tree kitty.


Farm Sanctuary’s Walk for Farm Animals NEEDS YOU!  »

The Berkeley chapter of Farm Sanctuary’s Walk for Farm Animals needs walkers to raise money and awareness by busting out their walking/running/dancing (hey! why not!) shoes! It’s a great way to meet other (crazy? non-crazy? it’s a crap shoot!) vegans, get some exercise (WHAT’S THAT! WHO’S HE!?), and raise money for an awesome cause.

I know, you wish it was a bakesale/walk to a/nother/bakesale but we can only fatten you so much. Wait, hold the phone, how amazing would that be? One Faturday we need bakesales stationed along the city, and you run between then, replenishing with cupcakes instead of water. OMG GENIUS. First person to not die, wins! Kinda like the vegan Hunger Games.* Kinda. Until then, make it happen at the Walk for Farm Animals. C’mon, do it for Kim Gordon (CLICK THAT FOR A SURPRISE!).

*I wanted to link to Meave’s review of The Hunger Games on goodreads here because it’s so delightful but I couldn’t figure it out. STUPID INTERNET! STUPIDER LAURA! However, if you know what’s good for you (or just want to find your next favorite book, or learn about Agatha Christie’s entire [Ed.: mystery] canon—from fully sane racist to fully demented racist, or just read the best book reviews ever), check her out


What’s the difference between a pigeon and an art critic?  »

Answer: not much! According to Keio University psychologist Shigeru Watanabe, pigeons can differentiate between “good” and “bad” art after having been taught to recognize the “concept of a stimulus class that humans name ‘good’ pictures.” What?

At this university in Tokyo, Watanabe showed the pigeons a set of children’s paintings, which had been judged “good” or “bad” by a group of adults. Through positive reinforcement, the pigeons learned how to recognize “good” and “bad” art—he gave them seeds when they chose (whatever that means in this case, “chose”) the “good” art. He then repeated the experiment with 10 new paintings by adults, and had the pigeons choose which were “good” and which were “bad.” The pigeons picked out the “good” art “twice as often” as the “bad.” Amazing!

The article doesn’t say whether the number of pigeons who deemed a painting “good” or “bad” corresponded with the work’s critical reception or popularity, which is too bad because that would be interesting; nor does it say what kind of pigeons they were. Regardless, if a pigeon can have the same opinion as an expert art critic, maybe we should all be going to more museums and galleries. It’s a lot more rewarding to see art than read about what someone else thinks about it.

If a pigeon wrote a column, though, I would definitely read it.


Capybaras and wtf people EAT THEM!?  »

Okay so look at that photo. If that family of fucking perfectly beautiful capybaras doesn’t make you want to find/lose religion, there is no fucking hope for your whatsoever. Capybaras are the world’s largest rodent (the average weight is 100 pounds) and while that might freak you out, being hella large furry rats is actually AWESOME and you are just a close-minded anti-rodentia bigot god you probably hate little people too or some other bigoted bullshit. Capybaras are highly social and can hold their breath underwater for up to 5 minutes which basically makes them superheroes who walk amongst (those of) us (who are lucky enough to live in Argentina or Brazil). UGH, I wish there were wild capybaras in California…I would never leave the woods looking for them. It’s bad enough with my thing for Sasquatch, if I threw capybaras into the mix, I’d become a straight up woods-living witch, luring kids into my witch-shack with delicious candy only to eat them (and the candy). FUN FACT: In the wild, Capybaras eat grasses and aquatic plants, melons and squashes. UGH THE THOUGHT OF A CAPYBARA EATING A HONEYDEW PLEASE STOP I CAN’T.

Anyway, after learning recently that people eat these magical, adorable, perfectly perfect creatures, I nearly wanted to set the world on fire. WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK PEOPLE?? How can you look at that cutest ever cute face and want to chow down. But again, how can you look at this cutest ever cute face and want to chow down? I don’t know. Man, fuck it. This is a rant to nowhere. But somewhere in the world (most likely Venezuela. Fuckers.) there are ranches (read: factory farm lite) with capybaras living shitty lives and then being killed to be eaten. One of the most fucked up things I learned recently (from awesome cartoonist Minty Lewis who will be featured on these very pages maybe even later today) is that the Catholic Church allowed people to eat capybaras during Lent (when only fish is usually permitted) but should we really be surprised?

On the bright side, you can buy this really cute capybara magnet on Etsy so there’s that.

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