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Kittens in Bowls!
April 19, 2011 10:54 AM   Subscribe

Here's a bunch of kittens in bowls. Love, Japan
posted by XQUZYPHYR (63 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite

 
Does what is says on the bowl.
posted by dazed_one at 10:56 AM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


It's like if there were a bunch of humans standing around in a park and you suddenly put benches everywhere.
posted by jardinier at 10:57 AM on April 19, 2011 [11 favorites]


I need train my bowls to capture kittens like this.
posted by DU at 10:58 AM on April 19, 2011 [12 favorites]


OMG you guys are conspiring to make me have a gleeful day. CUTENESS!!!

Watashi ga dai suki desu neee!!!!!!!!!
posted by xarnop at 11:03 AM on April 19, 2011


Brilliant:)
posted by wackyvorlon at 11:06 AM on April 19, 2011


I was prepared to respond with a simple "Why?" but then the Youtube comments made me listen to the audio to hear the weird Beatles cover in the background. I'm still wondering "Why?", but now I am also wondering how my life got to the point where I do something based off of a Youtube comment.
posted by mysterpigg at 11:10 AM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


THOSE KITTENS WENT INTO THE BOWLS!
posted by everichon at 11:11 AM on April 19, 2011 [6 favorites]


DU: I need train my bowls to capture kittens like this.

Sometimes I don't know how cats have survived in their domesticated form. There is no need to train bowls, boxes, or even bags how to catch kittens (and full-grown cats, too!) - cats and kittens have some instinctive desire to find out what's inside an unknown space with their whole body, instead of cautiously approaching the unknown. The same can be said for tall ledges!

Set a large box in a room, and make sure that the cat cannot peer inside. What do they do? Leap in! Leave a bag slightly open, the cat will dash inside! What can be in there? Deadly snakes? Poisonous scorpions? Broken glass and rusty barbed wire? Let's find out! See that precarious pile of books? The cat can (and will) leap to the top! Danger be damned!

Cats are either woefully optimistic, or naive like no other mammal. Sure, you're a predator, but that doesn't mean that there aren't hidden traps everywhere!

I think it's only the foolish infatuation of people that has lead to this current mentality of the housecat. If they weren't so adorable, we wouldn't save them from too tall trees or bins full of caustic substances. Kitties: like fuzzy babies, we can't help but coddle them.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:15 AM on April 19, 2011 [34 favorites]


D'awwwww.

But I've been wondering for a while - does Japan just have a thing for scottish folds, or is there an interesting history there?
posted by you're a kitty! at 11:16 AM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


Kittens in bowls, people in holes, is there a trend developing. I guess I like things in things too.
posted by BrotherCaine at 11:16 AM on April 19, 2011


If "Obladee obladaa life goes on" is supposed to reassure me that the kittens were not baked into casseroles, it's not working.
posted by cmoj at 11:16 AM on April 19, 2011 [4 favorites]


but...did those kittens get IN the bowls, or were they in the bowls to begin with and this is being played backwards... OR were the bowls sliding under the kittens... you people take too much of this at face value... you need to learn to question reality....
posted by tomswift at 11:18 AM on April 19, 2011


Cats are either woefully optimistic, or naive like no other mammal. Sure, you're a predator, but that doesn't mean that there aren't hidden traps everywhere!


I don't know. Takes my cat about 10 minutes to decide if she wants to exit via the clear sliding glass door or just merely sit there enjoying the breeze and letting the heat escape.
posted by longdaysjourney at 11:23 AM on April 19, 2011 [5 favorites]


Kittens in Bowlers! Kittens in Bowlers!

Ok, technically not a bowler.


Kitten in a tiny hat!
posted by sutt at 11:23 AM on April 19, 2011


Maybe I've watched too many Japanese game shows / manga, but my first reaction to the clip was OH NO KITTIES DON'T GO IN THOSE BOWLS!!! But, when I saw that nobody was putting on 3-inch stilettoes, I relaxed a bit.

a bit.
posted by LMGM at 11:26 AM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


I would just like to record that I am deliberately choosing to watch this video of kittens. If this makes me a stereotype, so be it.
posted by marginaliana at 11:26 AM on April 19, 2011


GOOGLE NEKO NABE, SHEEPLES it will melt your brain... with cuteness.
posted by ardgedee at 11:29 AM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


This is a significant advancement in the field of kittenology.
posted by Dodecadermaldenticles at 11:29 AM on April 19, 2011 [7 favorites]


Am I the only one who's really hungry right now?
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:39 AM on April 19, 2011


Obladi Oblada Cats in Bowls, yeah!
La la la la cats in bowls!
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:46 AM on April 19, 2011 [9 favorites]


They're like hermit crabs.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:47 AM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


Dear Japan:

Thank you, it was appreciated very much. But don't you have more important things to be paying attention to?

Love, MetaFilter
posted by Plutor at 11:50 AM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you ever wonder if cats think we're strange for putting food in their sleeping pods?
posted by TooFewShoes at 11:51 AM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


IHNIHTPGTKWITBOW.
posted by Wolfdog at 11:57 AM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Cats in sinks.

Especially this one.
posted by jamjam at 11:59 AM on April 19, 2011


Is there some sort of betting involved here?

All our cats have been strays or rescues, and I'd never go to a breeder or anything...but I just love the look of Japanese cats. They just have a different sort of face or something.
posted by JoanArkham at 11:59 AM on April 19, 2011


A kitten smorgasbord! Kawaiiiiiiiii!
posted by likeso at 12:01 PM on April 19, 2011


Huh. One of my cats appears to have dedicated her life to a refutation of Schrodinger. Put a box on the floor, and 100% of the time there will be a live cat in it. I'll have to see how it works with bowls.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:04 PM on April 19, 2011 [10 favorites]


My kitty spends half her life in bags, boxes, and her scratch lounge/bowling alley/luge.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:06 PM on April 19, 2011


You're supposed to at least remove their fur before you cook them.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:16 PM on April 19, 2011


Oh Japan, Japan
So mad, yet you love kittens
Oh Japan. Mad love
posted by Decani at 12:18 PM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Cancel your cable, because this is your new form of entertainment:

1. Buy a bottle of wine. Actually, you just need the bag.
2. Put catnip in bag.
3. Set on floor.
4. Drink wine and laugh hilariously as your cat runs around with the bag on his head.
posted by desjardins at 12:28 PM on April 19, 2011 [7 favorites]


This why the internet was invented.
posted by Gilbert at 12:31 PM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Parry Gripp! Paging Parry Gripp to aisle 7!
posted by katillathehun at 12:49 PM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh god, thank you. I was so cranky today but the cuteness of this just fixed that right up.
posted by 8dot3 at 12:51 PM on April 19, 2011


Set a large box in a room, and make sure that the cat cannot peer inside. What do they do? Leap in! Leave a bag slightly open, the cat will dash inside! What can be in there? Deadly snakes? Poisonous scorpions? Broken glass and rusty barbed wire?

Well, in my house, once a box has been set and a cat has leaped into it, the dangerous thing that box contains is a cat.

Which will wait. For any one of the other cats. Or the dogs. Or a human leg... you know, pretty much whatever, and then there will be a scramble of feet, a viscous unseen swatting and a gently rocking box as the hunter retreats back into its battle fort. Victorious.

We leave boxes all over the house, just so the cats have castles to war from.
posted by quin at 12:56 PM on April 19, 2011 [6 favorites]


Cats are either woefully optimistic, or naive like no other mammal. Sure, you're a predator, but that doesn't mean that there aren't hidden traps everywhere!

As witness the old saw curiosity killed the cat.

I was surprised to find out that a variation with a very different--almost an opposite-- sense was current for at least 400 years:

The earliest printed reference to the origin of this proverb is attributed to the British playwright Ben Jonson in his 1598 play, Every Man in His Humour, which was performed first by William Shakespeare.

...Helter skelter, hang sorrow, care will kill a cat, up-tails all, and a pox on the hangman.


"Curiosity killed the cat" apparently showed up in print only in 1902.

I think the "woefully optimistic" personalities of our cats can be laid at the feet (alright, pseudopods) of their symbiont, Toxoplasma Gondii. Toxo destroys rats' fear of the odor of cats, and very likely other fears as well, in my opinion, and not just in rodents.

The reversal of the proverb around the beginning of the 20th century raises in my mind the possibility of a change in the effect of toxoplasmosis from making cats more fearful to making them less fearful.

This could be accomplished by the simple expedient of increasing the virulence of the toxo. Instead of merely increasing the activity of the part of the brain which gave rise to fear, a more virulent strain might partially destroy that part of the brain altogether, either by direct infection or by stimulating an autoimmune attack.

And an increase in virulence is precisely what is expected from a pathogen (or even a symbiont) when the population density of the host increases past a critical threshold, because opportunities to be passed on from host to host become more frequent, and it's no longer necessary to avoid compromising the health of the host as assiduously as before, and that means the pathogen can get away with taking more out of the host.
posted by jamjam at 1:00 PM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


But I've been wondering for a while - does Japan just have a thing for scottish folds, or is there an interesting history there?

I was wondering the same thing. I won't lie — I think because of Maru if I were looking to buy a kitten I think I'd get a Scottish Fold and put boxes in front of it. All the cats I had growing up were really boring and just laid around and never played with crap or did anything for attention.
posted by floam at 1:30 PM on April 19, 2011


Yes, I'm wondering about the Scottish fold thing as well— any Japanese or Japan expert Mefites know why they are so popular there? Is it a result of Maru's popularity or did it pre-exist? Should they really be called Japanese folds?
posted by Maias at 1:36 PM on April 19, 2011


I do not know the rationale behind this mysterious Japanese TV show where dozens of kittens are set loose in a room full of casserole dishes ...
posted by iustinu10 at 1:46 PM on April 19, 2011


Cats are either woefully optimistic, or naive like no other mammal.

My pulled-from-the-air hypothesis is that cats are compelled to explore all hidey-holes because they know they're pretty much the smallest predator around and always want to know all the places they could bolt to. (Everything after the "because" should actually be read more like "because there was a survival advantage to compulsively checking all hidey-holes, it was selected for".)
posted by Zed at 1:53 PM on April 19, 2011


I do not know the rationale behind this mysterious Japanese TV show where dozens of kittens are set loose in a room full of casserole dishes ...

With all these casserole dishes, at least one of them is bound to contain a casserole! Keep looking, dammit! Mittens, don't fall asleep, it's a trap! Lieutenant, we've lost Private Mittens!
posted by sebastienbailard at 2:15 PM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


My cat likes the ceramic containers as well, but seeing as I don't leave clean bowls around the apartment (dirty ones are another story...) she's relegated to the sink and the tub. Which you can see at the beginning of this NSFW video. She does that same thing these kittens do though, flopping down and rolling over and generally seeming to enjoy the cool smoothness of the ceramic.
posted by carsonb at 2:20 PM on April 19, 2011


The Japanese seem to have found the solution to the problem of "herding cats".
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:31 PM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Meh.
Bowls are easy.
When you need a real challenge...
posted by Poet_Lariat at 2:35 PM on April 19, 2011


45 comments and no bonsai kittens reference? Disappointing.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 2:42 PM on April 19, 2011


Ahem
posted by Poet_Lariat at 2:58 PM on April 19, 2011 [4 favorites]


This is why the Japanese are the greatest people on the planet. I mean, where else do you have a television program about cats and bowls? And that's not spur-of-the-moment, like, "Oh, I wonder what would happen if we put kittens and bowls together?" No! Just look how many bowls they've got there. That's planning. This was a carefully thought-out, pre-budgeted scene. There were probably several meetings just to decide between boxes or bowls… I mean, people really worked on this (as their jobs!) That's spectacular.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:43 PM on April 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


The reversal of the proverb around the beginning of the 20th century raises in my mind the possibility of a change in the effect of toxoplasmosis from making cats more fearful to making them less fearful.

It also helps when you stop killing them in mass quantities.

Damn, that depressed me. I'm totally that person who can't read about the middle ages because the cat-killing just destroys me. Time for a pick-me-up.

KITTENS! KITTENS IN BOWLS!
posted by you're a kitty! at 3:43 PM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


God damn it. God damn it. I was happy before this video. Now I know that somewhere there is a job that involves watching kittens lie down in bowls and IT IS NOT MY JOB.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 4:30 PM on April 19, 2011 [5 favorites]


There has got to be like a billion dollars to be made redubbing these Japanese TV shows and rebroadcasting them here in English. Why has this niche not been filled? People are sure to be weirded out by that box that's often in the corner with nothing but a continuous reaction shot from one person, but you can just black that out and put a big network logo there, or ads.
posted by floam at 4:48 PM on April 19, 2011


floam, see MXC. It was, indeed, genius.
posted by carsonb at 5:28 PM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


But I've been wondering for a while - does Japan just have a thing for scottish folds, or is there an interesting history there?

Japan has a disturbing tendency to popularize certain breeds of cats and dogs from year to year, and apparently according to this pet insurance company website, Scottish Folds have been the most popular breed for two years in a row ('09 and '10). Before that, it was the American Shorthair. Translation of list at the bottom of that page:

1 (1) Scottish Fold 1,134 20.7%
2 (2) American Shorthair 918 16.7%
3 (5) Mixed 527 9.6%
4 (3) Russian Blue 517 9.4%
5 (6) Maine Coon 265 4.8%
6 (10) Norwegian Forest Cat 255 4.6%
7 (4) Persian (Chinchilla) 254 4.6%
8 (7) Abyssinian 244 4.4%
9 (9) Somali 206 3.8%
9 (-) Japanese Cat

The twisted side of this phenomenon is that in animal shelters, you can often tell how old certain breeds are because they probably were the popular breeds around the time they were born and sold.

It's unfortunately still very common for people here to buy animals from pet stores, the kind where they display the kittens and puppies in glass cases. And most people want kittens and puppies ("kawaii!"); they don't want to adopt grown-up animals, so they don't even consider going to a shelter to adopt. Although there are various organizations working to rectify this situation, we've still got a long way to go before the pet situation changes here. I could go on about this but the reality's pretty abhorrent and depressing... over 300,000 animals are killed in shelters here per year and one of the reasons for this is that there are trends in breeds. Yes, there are lots of responsible pet-owners, too (Me!) but that's the reality.

Sorry to sort of rain on people's parades here, but a few of you asked, so there you go. I personally have a problem with shows like the linked one because I think they encourage people to go out and buy kawaii kittens to stuff in pots, without giving much thought to the fact that these animals will live long past their kitten cuteness. But that's just me.
posted by misozaki at 6:43 PM on April 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


over 300,000 animals are killed in shelters here per year

Adjusted for human population, that figure pales before the US numbers, just as a point of comparison. That supports my anecdatal evidence regarding my Japanese friends and pet ownership. They treat their animals so well and with so much love that they make the American "cat woman" trope seem abusive and neglectful in comparison.

Also, I really dislike your idea of restricting cute animal pictures, especially cats. I've been a cat owner all my adult life; they were all shelter kitties, all spayed, all indoor-living except when they would go over the wall. I'm still mourning my last cat's passing over a year ago and have ongoing mental anguish about adopting a new cat. Cute cat pictures cheer me up and bring me closer every day to being able take home another kitty.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 11:42 PM on April 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


KAWAII!!!!
posted by nikoniko at 12:44 AM on April 20, 2011


I think the "woefully optimistic" personalities of our cats can be laid at the feet (alright, pseudopods) of their symbiont, Toxoplasma Gondii. Toxo destroys rats' fear of the odor of cats, and very likely other fears as well, in my opinion, and not just in rodents.
. . .
This could be accomplished by the simple expedient of increasing the virulence of the toxo....


Clever, but completely wrong.

Toxo wants to parasitize a cat because it is only in a cat, its primary host, that Toxo can sexually reproduce.

To get there, it reduces fear in its intermediate hosts -- often rats, sometimes people. To reduce the fear, it has to alter the host's brain, which requires a Toxo to die in a kamikaze maneuver. This is OK, because the intermediate host gets infected by a group of clones, genetically identical, so the sacrifice actually enables the self-sacrificer to pass on his genes -- albeit via his clone brothers. It's a "fit" sacrifice, in evolutionary terms.

But reducing the cat's fear would be unfit -- Toxo wants the cat to live a long safe life, during which the Toxos infecting it can have lots of Toxo babies the cat can shit out .
posted by orthogonality at 1:39 AM on April 20, 2011


All the cats I had growing up were really boring and just laid around and never played with crap or did anything for attention.

Get a feral. I haven't slept in weeks. Nothing she won't kill and eat. Cardboard, toilet paper, my food, things that are toxic to her.

Constantly wants to go out. Mew! Mew! Mew! Mew! Mew! All night long. Scratches the crap out of me when I put her harness on.

Endlessly fascinated when I take a bath. Otherwise runs around attacking the air.

It's a damned good thing she's so cute. And to be fair, she does go where I point, half the time.
posted by orthogonality at 1:47 AM on April 20, 2011


Get a feral. I haven't slept in weeks. Nothing she won't kill and eat. Cardboard, toilet paper, my food, things that are toxic to her.

Even better, find a feral/shelter Abyssinian or two. I have two different friends who each own a pair of Abyssinians and I've had to pet-sit for them both several times over the years. The amount of destruction those cats can wreak surpasseth all understanding. During one of their vacations I took over my toy robotic arm which would perform random movements with a laser pointer in its grips. My cats at home had tired of it so I was curious to see what the imps of satan would do with it. The first test lasted about twenty seconds before they had attacked the arm and tipped it over while biting it hard enough to leave marks. So I put it in their wire mesh carrier cage and started it up again. Good laughs while they tore around after the light for about five minutes. Thinking they were occupied safely, I left them and went and mowed their lawn and cleaned up their yard a bit. Coming back inside about 45 minutes later, it appeared that the arm had malfunctioned and had started tracing a 6"x4" rectangle. Which the cats had attacked and tore through the plaster to the lathing strips behind. And apparently eaten the fallen plaster, because the floor was spotless. A call to the vet assured me that they were in no danger from the plaster ingestion but I was on pins and needles til their droppings returned to their normal color/shape from the pieces of chalk they resembled directly after the incident. They have no off switch, they are implacable. The idea of having to sleep with one or two of those dervishes in the same house gives me the heebiejeebies.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 2:21 AM on April 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Which makes me question the figure of how many Abyssinians exist in Tokyo from misozaki's post. 244? Really? My experience leads me to believe that 244 Abyssinians living in the same city would reduce it to a dusty pile that could be cleaned up with a standard vacuum cleaner.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 2:25 AM on April 20, 2011


Purposeful Grimace, those numbers are from an insurance company's website, and they don't really explain where they got those figures... But no, I'm pretty sure they aren't the grand total of all the Abyssinians living in Japan. But it is true that there are trends in animal breeds here, and I feel kind of strongly about the sad state of abandoned pets, esp when they're specifically tossed out because they're no longer "fashionable."

And sorry if you felt that I was somehow "restricting" cuteness, maybe I should have kept that last part of my comment to myself. I love Maru as much as everybody else on the Internet, so no hard feelings?
posted by misozaki at 2:54 AM on April 20, 2011


No hard feelings at all, just trying to express a different viewpoint buttressed by my personal feelings. Apologies if it seem like an attack on you.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 3:48 AM on April 20, 2011


But reducing the cat's fear would be unfit -- Toxo wants the cat to live a long safe life, during which the Toxos infecting it can have lots of Toxo babies the cat can shit out .

To a ten pound domestic cat, I am more than twice as massive as the largest recorded polar bear (~2000lbs.) is compared to me, and much more dangerous.

I would say a very unusually high degree of fearlessness is a precondition for life as a domestic cat, and reducing the fear levels of domestic cats relative to that of their closest wild kin, such as the Scottish wild cat (known for a fear of humans greater than that of any other wild animal in Britain) and the wild cat native to one of the Japanese islands, far from decreasing their fitness, or the fitness of their symbionts, has made them some of the most successful mammals on the planet and raised infection of humans by their symbiont to the status of a world wide pandemic.

Like you're a kitty!, accounts of the public spectacles of cat torture which were apparently widespread in the Middle Ages have hit me pretty hard, and a desire to understand how people could have done those incredibly horrible things, and how we got here from there (my short answer is that toxo infection made people fear cats in those days rather than love them as it does today-- and vice versa) got me started thinking about possible changes in toxo and looking for plausible mechanisms which could bring those changes about.
posted by jamjam at 11:59 AM on April 20, 2011


And to be fair, she does go where I point, half the time.

That's pretty impressive. Mine just stares at my finger when I point at something.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:55 PM on April 20, 2011


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