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March 8, 2014 8:04 PM   Subscribe

You may be familiar with the 'business cat' memes I Should Buy A Boat Cat (aka Sophisticated Cat) and Business Cat (see also). And perhaps you followed Matthew Inman's workplace adventures of the Bobcats at The Oatmeal. More recently, Tom Fonder at Happy Jar has been developing a subset of comics centered on his own version of a cat who also happens to be a CEO. So far: Coffee; Briefcase; Pay Rise; Poster; and Fight and Flight.
posted by paleyellowwithorange (36 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite

 
*is dead*
posted by Twain Device at 8:08 PM on March 8


The logical opposite of Party Cat.
posted by maryr at 8:14 PM on March 8 [9 favorites]


CEO cat is just pitch perfect. I love the pay rise one.
posted by arcticseal at 8:20 PM on March 8 [2 favorites]


That was the one that sold me. Even better: at the time, I was part of a workplace committee to revamp the employee 'reward and recognition' program, because there had been feedback that the rewards given weren't really valued by employees. You know I forwarded that one to the group.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 8:26 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


I would love the pay raise one... if Business Cat hadn't done it first. But I think the Fight or Flight one is perfect.

Note: I was Business Cat for Halloween a couple years ago. I may be slightly obsessed with Business Cat.
posted by maryr at 8:29 PM on March 8 [6 favorites]


Finally figured it out--Memes are like Webcomics, but funnier.

Anyway, I have no idea what I'm doing.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:34 PM on March 8 [3 favorites]


Tom Fonder at Happy Jar has been developing a subset of comics centered on his own version of a cat who also happens to be a CEO

This is a surreal sequence of words
posted by clockzero at 8:37 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


See my profile pic for an explanation.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 8:39 PM on March 8


I should buy a boat.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:59 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


I was supposed to pick up Carl.
posted by HeroZero at 9:10 PM on March 8 [13 favorites]


These are great, but the human hands bother me.
posted by jferg at 9:37 PM on March 8 [13 favorites]


"Copyright 1968." Hmm, determined or not, that cat must be long dead. That's kind of a downer.

Brought to you by the Brotherhood of The Simpsons Reference Attribution Overseers
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 9:38 PM on March 8 [10 favorites]


I don't like the creepy human hands. It makes me feel like the cat has decapitated a human businessman and is using his body as a kind of biological mech suit.
posted by burnmp3s at 9:38 PM on March 8 [4 favorites]


Which a cat would totally do.
posted by NoraReed at 9:40 PM on March 8 [19 favorites]


Personally, I preferred Jon "Multiverse" Rosenberg's Cornelius Snarlington, Business Deer, Part 2, Part 3, Alleged Conclusion.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:04 PM on March 8 [7 favorites]


I guess I should find it strange that the timeline of memes such as these are way better curated than my own family's genealogy, but the reality is my family is mostly made up of a bunch of boring jerks..
posted by item at 11:11 PM on March 8 [4 favorites]


...oh yeah but we have had some great cats.
posted by item at 11:12 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


I loved CEO cat, especially Coffee. I was trying to give myself a manicure but my cat decided to take a very important meeting with my tools.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:20 AM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Corporation Cat
posted by oceanjesse at 1:10 AM on March 9


I adore Business Cat and Boat Cat.

One of the funniest misfires of Business Cat came from a poster on Reddit who introduced it to their friend - who loved it as well and wanted to make their own. They didn't quite understand it.
posted by sektah at 5:42 AM on March 9 [4 favorites]


Coffee was the best! The long "pause" of multiple panels sold it for me. Why do cats just arbitrarily decide to knock things off of things, after looking at them for a while?
posted by chainsofreedom at 5:51 AM on March 9 [1 favorite]


People disturbed by the person hands should never google Human Dog.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:00 AM on March 9


Boat Cat made his debut in a Bjork video -- who knew? Not me! But it makes for a great early-Sunday-morning "WTF Moment."
posted by Fuzzypumper at 6:46 AM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Personally, I preferred Jon "Multiverse" Rosenberg's Cornelius Snarlington, Business Deer

Awesome! The last two frames in the first strip are the best thing I've seen this week. Looks like you missed parts 4 and 5, though, and he also appears in a few more episodes after the conclusion.
posted by effbot at 6:49 AM on March 9


Boat Cat made his debut in a Bjork video -- who knew? Not me!

Nor me. I discovered this fact while researching this post. All this time I figured it was a quickie photoshop of a cat's head on a human body.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 7:11 AM on March 9


doctor cat also fairly d'awww
posted by LogicalDash at 7:59 AM on March 9 [1 favorite]


I will never, ever get enough of cat memes. When I'm in the old folks' home, and we're all doing the 2054 equivalent of sitting 'round the television watching America's Funniest Home Videos, I will be looking at LOLCat pictures on The Internet Archive (because the rest of the world will have long since moved on) and cackling.
posted by Scientist at 7:59 AM on March 9 [2 favorites]


oneswellfoop: MeFi's own Jon Rosenberg.
posted by jferg at 8:09 AM on March 9


These are all great, but Jeffrey Rowland's webcomic Overcompensating was there first with Catbank.

Meanwhile, at the Business Loan Department at Catbank...
Meanwhile, at Catbank...
Meanwhile, at the Catbank Board of Directors meeting...
Meanwhile outside the boarded-up office complex formerly known as Catbank...
posted by daisyk at 10:07 AM on March 9 [4 favorites]


I think commodities trader cat predates most of these.
posted by effbot at 10:52 AM on March 9 [2 favorites]


Tom Fonder at Happy Jar has been developing a subset of comics centered on his own version of a cat who also happens to be a CEO

This is a surreal sequence of words

See my profile pic for an explanation.


No, I understand what's going on here; I didn't mean to indicate that I don't know what that sentence refers to. I think it's surreal because I understand what it is. Here's what I mean.

Taking an existing story and making your own telling of it has been done since people began telling stories, of course. Many of Shakespeare's plays were retellings or one or more tales that others also told, to use one big trite example. And one might be inclined to think that this is what's happening here.

But this is something different, I think: there's no story that's being retold or differently told, and there isn't even a character who is being used to tell new stories, exactly, because the strips are all just jokes told in several panels. To some extent, this sort of reproduction without innovation is true for all memes. So there's something especially odd, and distinct from other meme creation, about the idea of "developing a subset of comics". That formal/technical characterization (which I think is accurate) sort of gives away how weirdly creatively vacant it is. The only thing that is his about this, that is new, is that the cat has a human body, which comes across as really visually creepy to me. The cat's expression never changes and it's impossible to shake the impression that it's a cat head grafted onto a human body, so it's sort of unsettling rather than cute.

Which isn't to say that it can't elicit a chuckle, or that it's inherently bad, or that people who like it have bad taste or anything. To me, the strip's aesthetic is just deeply odd and vacuous, in an unintentional and subtle way. If I were feeling especially cynical, I would say these strips are a thin veneer of content sitting on the actual product of merchandise.
posted by clockzero at 12:08 PM on March 9


lol ok. I was just saying I thought my sentence was a bit unwieldy and I should shut the fuck up more often.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 3:45 PM on March 9


But to properly respond, I'll let Samuel Butler do the talking:

"Ideas, no less than the living beings in whose minds they arise, must be begotten by parents not very unlike themselves, the most original still differing but slightly from the parents that have given rise to them. Life is like a fugue, everything must grow out of the subject and there must be nothing new."
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 3:50 PM on March 9


doctor cat also fairly d'awww

Dr Tinycat
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 3:58 PM on March 9


"Ideas, no less than the living beings in whose minds they arise, must be begotten by parents not very unlike themselves, the most original still differing but slightly from the parents that have given rise to them. Life is like a fugue, everything must grow out of the subject and there must be nothing new."

This is sometimes true, and sometimes not. Sometimes a child is radically distinct from the parent, as Samuel Butler himself was from his parents.

In any case, of course new forms and works grow from what exists already, as I myself mentioned before by talking about new tellings of old stories. I was talking explicitly about how this thing fits into the existing traditions. That was really my point, in fact.
posted by clockzero at 4:38 PM on March 9


Tempted to get this for my cube...
posted by maryr at 2:26 PM on March 10 [1 favorite]


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