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Kittens of the Sea
October 22, 2008 9:23 AM   Subscribe

Fish. They're ugly and they smell. You can't find many calendars with them on, and they lose out to pandas when it comes to zoo adoption. But wait! PETA are going to save fish through canny PR. Say hello to Sea Kittens.
posted by mippy (82 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Fish. Canny. I get it.
posted by Plutor at 9:26 AM on October 22, 2008


Does "sea kittens" get us closer to LOLPETA?
posted by mandal at 9:28 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


No one would hurt a sea kitten!
posted by owtytrof at 9:31 AM on October 22, 2008


uh oh, There's this great Moroccan dish called puss puss, or is it cous cous?

Does Sea Kittens mean when I look at a can of tuna fish it's now cat food, not for the cat but made of cats?
posted by nickyskye at 9:31 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Well, there's always the characters from "Finding Nemo". But "sea kittens" seems like a bit over the top even for PETA.
posted by Harald74 at 9:32 AM on October 22, 2008


There's more than one way to skin a sea kitten.
posted by scarello at 9:32 AM on October 22, 2008


I don't understand the point of this FPP but more importantly I don't understand the point of your PR link. Searching for PETA on the page gets zero results as does searching for sea kittens. I hate PeTA with the heat of a thousand suns but this is a perfect example of GYOB.
posted by Manhasset at 9:34 AM on October 22, 2008


You can learn a lot about a culture from its bedtime stories. Find out what keeps the sea kittens up at night.

What's going to keep me up at night is worrying about the poor kids who may be disappointed that an aquarium actually contains fish, and that you can't hug them like kittens.
posted by Planet F at 9:35 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


"You did not kill the sea kitten only to keep alive and to sell for food, he thought. You killed him for pride and because you are a sea kitten hunter. You loved him when he was alive and you loved him after. If you love him, it is not a sin to kill him. Or is it more?"

- Excerpt from The Old Man and the Sea Kitten
posted by burnmp3s at 9:38 AM on October 22, 2008 [20 favorites]


Wait -- PETA doesn't like the idea of pets. But they want to make fish seem more like pets so that people will stop eating them. But you shouldn't own pets. The logic, she is not there!

WTF, PETA?
posted by grubi at 9:38 AM on October 22, 2008 [6 favorites]


Um, the PR link was a link to a blog slagging off PR. A bonus link, if you will. If you want to analyse it, knock yerself out :)

It was pretty staggering to me that someone thought fish needed rebranding. Little Chef, Fray Bentos pies, yes. Fish? No.
posted by mippy at 9:38 AM on October 22, 2008


What the hell? There's practically NO meat on a kitten and you shouldn't eat carnivores, they're loaded with heavy metals and all other kinds of food-chain pollutants.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 9:38 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Is this kitten what I have, or is it fish? I know it’s tuna, but it says kitten. By the sea. Is that stupid?

*nom nom nom*
posted by Metroid Baby at 9:39 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


This is just going to result in guppy mills
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:39 AM on October 22, 2008 [18 favorites]


I wonder when we can expect the Sea Kittens to launch their attack on land kittens. (chapter 3)

Perhaps we should invest in camouflage for our land kittens.
posted by fontophilic at 9:40 AM on October 22, 2008


burnmp3s loves that passage sooo much.
posted by grubi at 9:41 AM on October 22, 2008


Sea kittens are just as intelligent (not to mention adorable) as dogs and cats

This claim will probably work on children of fish-level gullibility
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:42 AM on October 22, 2008


One of the pics in the 'Sea Kittens' link shows a fish reading to some smaller fish from Mao's Little Red Book, so, take that for what you will.
posted by rocket88 at 9:45 AM on October 22, 2008


Mmmm. Sea kittens.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 9:46 AM on October 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


Well, there's always the characters from "Finding Nemo". But "sea kittens" seems like a bit over the top even for PETA.

You're not familiar with PETA, are you?
posted by carfullofpandas at 9:46 AM on October 22, 2008


Sea kitten tastes great grilled with butter, lemon and capers.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:47 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


When the FPP said "they smell", I thought of the illness where a person smells like rotten fish, Trimethylaminuria. The Model Who Smells Like Dead Fish.
posted by nickyskye at 9:47 AM on October 22, 2008


If these start showing up as LOLcats, I'm going to be very angry.

They are cats in nom only.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:47 AM on October 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


Wow, if Sea Kittens taste that good, maybe I should fry me up some Land Kittens. Mmmm.
posted by Malor at 9:48 AM on October 22, 2008


What amazes me about PETA is how their PR stunts seem to fluctuate unpredictably between the poles of "clever and effective," and "totally loathsome."
posted by bicyclefish at 9:50 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


They're getting quite a run for their money from PEEA -- People for the Ethical Eatment of Animals.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:52 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


THat PR link is suck. How much shit do you have to wade through to get to the part that has something to do with this awful post?
posted by Mister_A at 9:53 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


I strongly disagree with the sentiment that fish are ugly. Get a snorkel and go to the Cayman's for fuck's sake. Unbelievable.
posted by spicynuts at 9:54 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


This post has subjected me to the worst google ad ever, which leads here (music).
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:55 AM on October 22, 2008


Ugly fish, tasty dish:

Hopefully not a "substitute fish" like the Orange Roughy, known as a Slimehead before the menu-writers got to work on it. Having over-fished with the usual methods, people started scraping the deep bottom, creating terrible disruption of the ecosystem. Next time you eat one, consider it might be 150 years old.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:55 AM on October 22, 2008 [3 favorites]


KILLING KITENS I AM ME-OWTRAGED
posted by resurrexit at 9:56 AM on October 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


Is this what happened to all those kittens I've tossed in the river?
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 9:56 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Mmm, walleye.
posted by sciurus at 9:56 AM on October 22, 2008


It's always sad when your goldseakitten dies, but that's life for you. Just flush it down the toilet and get another one. And then enjoy a tasty tuna sea kitten sandwich for lunch.

Don't think I'm sea kittening for favorites here.
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:57 AM on October 22, 2008


Wow, according to the game, you can put lipstick on a sea kitten. Which I guess makes it a better pet than a pig.
posted by uncleozzy at 9:58 AM on October 22, 2008 [3 favorites]


So would baby lionfish be sea-kittens or sea-cubs?

Either way, don't pet them. It makes them angry and they get stingy when they are angry.
posted by quin at 10:03 AM on October 22, 2008


PETA : Metafilter ::

A. liberal : Bill O'Reilly

B. exhausted : redundant

C. predictable : banal

D. button : reactionary
posted by xod at 10:03 AM on October 22, 2008


Hmm.
When Tony is caught and
fed to a precocious young
child who, having eaten
one mercury-filled sea
kitten too many, falls to
the bottom of his class, the
irony is not lost on him.
This is the text opposite a picture of a sad-looking mercury-poisoned boy looking at the skeleton of a fish called Tony. But Tony's head is still intact and Tony is looking back at the boy. And the irony of the precocious boy's brain damage is not lost on Tony the dead fish.

I like those folk at PETA. It's like David Lynch for kids.
posted by pracowity at 10:07 AM on October 22, 2008 [10 favorites]


So does Sea Kitten cover the territory missed by Ceiling Cat? A friend of mine wants to know.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 10:09 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


'Every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten'

This reminds me of a playground saying - 'Have you ever killed a fish?' If you say yes, you're cruel. If you say no, there comes a reply alluding to the somewhat scampi-scented qualities of the vagina.

We didn't have much to do in the North-West.
posted by mippy at 10:24 AM on October 22, 2008


I don't understand it and I don't like it.
posted by Lizc at 10:24 AM on October 22, 2008


I strongly disagree with the sentiment that fish are ugly.

"They're slithery and slimy, and they have eyes on either side of their pointy little heads—which is weird, to say the least."

Yes. WEIRDO.
posted by mippy at 10:25 AM on October 22, 2008


Me: seems like a bit over the top even for PETA
carfullofpandas: You're not familiar with PETA, are you?

Going by your user name, you might be.

I figured this was a bit too much like tilting at windmills; rebranding a whole order of animals.
posted by Harald74 at 10:28 AM on October 22, 2008


You know who else was slithery and slimy?


YO MOMMA!
posted by spicynuts at 10:28 AM on October 22, 2008


what keeps the sea kittens up at night?

Dynamite fishing.
posted by rhymer at 10:28 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


So does Sea Kitten cover the territory missed by Ceiling Cat? A friend of mine wants to know.

Nope, that would be basement cat.

what keeps the sea kittens up at night?

Dynamite fishing.


No, that keeps them upside-down.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:31 AM on October 22, 2008


Fuck's sake, yesterday it was with the egregious redundant atheist posting and now you decided there wasn't enough fucking PETA floating around here? You know, after your third deletion they make you take a special remedial posting class with Cortex.
posted by nanojath at 10:33 AM on October 22, 2008


You know, there is something a little too 'Silence of the Lambs'-ey about sticking the head of a cat or the trunk of an elephant on the body of a fish. I have to look away now.
posted by rokabiri at 10:41 AM on October 22, 2008


"The problem with a sea kitten is that/eventually it becomes a sea cat."
posted by boo_radley at 10:45 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Paul Anka:
To stop those monsters 1-2-3,
Here's a fresh new way that's trouble-free,
It's got Paul Anka's guarantee...

Lisa:
Guarantee void in Tennessee.

Both:
Just don't look! Just don't look!
Just don't look! Just don't look!
Just don't look! Just don't look!

I'm not a big fan of commenting just to say a post is pointless, but it's clear you don't like PETA, and this campaign is pretty boring by their standards. Why bother calling attention to it?
posted by SpiffyRob at 10:57 AM on October 22, 2008


Fair enough though, commercial fishing is fucking the oceans. Perhaps kids could get back into tickling for trout. Sounds cute enough and gets you out in the woods.
posted by Abiezer at 10:59 AM on October 22, 2008


Is this what happened to all those kittens I've tossed in the river?

I was picturing a rural merman shoving a bunch of unwanted Sea Kittens into a sack and throwing that sack *out* of the river.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:02 AM on October 22, 2008 [7 favorites]


They're ugly and they smell. You can't find many calendars with them on, and they lose out to pandas

I also have it on good authority that they neither wear sweaters nor play drums.
posted by Herodios at 11:10 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Thanks for the post. Today, I put a tiara and a dress and lipstick on a fish. On a PETA website. Today, I am complete.
posted by not_on_display at 11:13 AM on October 22, 2008


Cool Papa Bell: "Sea kitten tastes great grilled with butter, lemon and capers."

In German there's the term "Dachhase" ("roof-rabbit") as a way of referring to a cat; wikipedia claims it derives from the siege of Vienna in 1683, but I've heard (unverified) stories from WWII also mentioning the eating of cats. I don't have any actual recipes, though...
posted by PontifexPrimus at 11:13 AM on October 22, 2008


[eat them up, yum.]
posted by not_on_display at 11:15 AM on October 22, 2008


The very last page of the "sea kittens stories" book which pacowity linked to up there (it's set up like a children's book with pages that turn) reads, of course, "fin".

I bet someone at PETA wanted to include the story book part just so they could make that joke.
posted by yhbc at 11:20 AM on October 22, 2008


Can you order see kittens from the back of comic books? If not, I'm sticking with my sea monkeys.

nanojath: "Fuck's sake, yesterday it was with the egregious redundant atheist posting and now you decided there wasn't enough fucking PETA floating around here? You know, after your third deletion they make you take a special remedial posting class with Cortex."

Don't know why this thread would get deleted. Other than the crappy "PR" link. That guy will wonder at the spike in his traffic. That site's yack.

Oh, and you missed linking to my undeleted PETA thread.
posted by cjorgensen at 11:20 AM on October 22, 2008


PETA has totally jumped the sea tiger.
posted by sfenders at 11:26 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


after your third deletion they make you take a special remedial posting class with Cortex.
So... who teaches that?

posted by Wolfdog at 11:27 AM on October 22, 2008


i love sea kittens but i can't eat a whole one.
posted by C17H19NO3 at 11:29 AM on October 22, 2008


Purrrrfectly delicious. Brought to you by People Eating Tasty Animals!
posted by blue_beetle at 11:30 AM on October 22, 2008


Huh. So this post is about how fish are ugly, and also a link to a blog that doesn't seem to have anything to do with fish or PETA? Oh there's the PETA link. Well.

Can we talk about god now? Or palin?
posted by Salvor Hardin at 11:34 AM on October 22, 2008


I think that, to a large extent, PETA exists purely so that people can be outraged at its latest antics. I do wonder about their funding, I mean you wouldn't think that there are that many people who are that nutty that direction. I know vegans who don't like PETA (admittedly, because they think PETA is harming the cause, but still).
posted by sotonohito at 11:36 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Don't know why this thread would get deleted.

Wishful thinking has always been a vice of mine

Oh, and you missed linking to my undeleted PETA thread.

It's the first of my three recent PETA link examples (click on the word "enough").
posted by nanojath at 11:40 AM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


In other news,* PETA is still [infatuated with cutesy public campaigns|bugfuck crazy]. Film at 11.

*If I used a tired old trope, but cross it out, it doesn't count, amirite?
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:53 AM on October 22, 2008


Sea kittens? C'mon, people club baby seals. Compared to them, "sea kittens" are noxious fungus.

"Wow, according to the game, you can put lipstick on a sea kitten. Which I guess makes it a better pet than a pig."

WHATS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A HOCKEY MOM AND A SEA KITTEN IT ISN'T LIPSTICK
posted by klangklangston at 11:56 AM on October 22, 2008


What would happen if a reasonable person took over PeTA? Oh, wait. I'm just being silly now.
posted by chuckdarwin at 11:58 AM on October 22, 2008


It's the first of my three recent PETA link examples (click on the word "enough").

How unobservant of me. Was showing as a followed link, as was "fucking," so I thought they were the same link. Dumb.

So totally stealing your "Wishful thinking has always been a vice of mine" line.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:19 PM on October 22, 2008


but it's clear you don't like PETA

No, I just thought 'Kittens of the Sea' is bloody ridiculous. Fish are great, kittens are great, but like houmous and chocolate, they don't need to be mixed.

Lost in The Showbiz is ace, but helps if you have to deal with shitty press releases.
posted by mippy at 12:33 PM on October 22, 2008


Spiders are now octo-kittens - do not squish!
posted by Artw at 12:54 PM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Other that getting turned on to the awesomeness of that macabre sea kitten book, my favorite part about this post are the people who showed up to bitch about PETA being nuts cause they made a nice little website directed mostly, I think, at pescaterians who eat fish cause they aren't cute. OMG, those assholes!

(Yes, there are reasons to dislike PETA but few of them seem to be on display in the sea kitten site.)
posted by dame at 1:14 PM on October 22, 2008


Man. Tony the Tuna is better educated than I am. Fish are such elitists.
posted by giraffe at 1:26 PM on October 22, 2008


I have a Sea Kitten ... in my pants.
posted by banshee at 1:33 PM on October 22, 2008


.

(sanity)
posted by JimmyJames at 2:33 PM on October 22, 2008


Ha! That's pretty clever. In a really cynical way.
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:04 PM on October 22, 2008


Did they have Edward Gorey's ghost collaborating on that book?

The Gashlysea Kittens

A is for Albacore, served on a plate
B is for Bass, hooked in the lake
C is for Catfish, battered and fried
D is for Dory, gutted and dried
[...]
posted by fleetmouse at 7:58 PM on October 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Am I too late to invoke Maddox in this thread?
posted by MikeMc at 9:11 PM on October 22, 2008


Speaking of ugly fishes suddenly becoming all popular, do you know what the name was for Chilean Sea Bass a few years ago? Patagonian toothfish. Not so appetizing now, huh?

Look, people started eating more fish because a) it's "healthier" and b) they're less like us and cute furry creatures, so c) we feel more comfortable eating them.

I think fish is delicious; I don't know what kittens taste like but I do know that it's against the custom of most Westerners to eat them. This is not necessarily the case elsewhere; cats are a delicacy, I guess, in China, as is dog meat. In fact, we in the West are pretty lousy at eating furry animals (the possible exceptions being rabbit, which is far more commonly eaten in Europe and maybe the Middle East, and squirrel [apparently only really suitable to make gravy]).

Changing the name of something goes a small way to changing your attitude towards it, but only if the change makes sense. And people seem perfectly comfortable eating something called catfish -- in fact it's one of the more popular fish to eat (and a good environmental choice if you can eat it, as well; it's an incredibly efficient source of animal protein). The fact that it's either served up as fillets (in which case it's hard to see it as a living animal) or presents itself whole as a pretty horrific and monstrous creature makes it hard to identify it as cute or adorable.

Also, and this is the major argument against any kind of "you shouldn't eat xyz": fish happens to be incredibly tasty.

I'm all for reducing the amount of meat and fish you eat. On average I probably eat fish 2-3 times per week and meat maybe 1-2 times a week. This is a personal choice I made to reduce the total amount of resources being used towards meat and fish production (and the ever dwindling fish supply). I think it's probably good for most people to eat less, both for their health and the health of the planet. But I think it's kind of wrong to judge other people's eating habits.

Peta will never win by trying to convince people that eating animals is wrong. But, Peta is basically the animal rights equivalent of the abortion pro-life movement. They (or at least, their core membership) believe animal products consumption is morally/ethically wrong. So in exactly the same way that the pro-life movement opposes all abortions rather than trying to come up with situations that reduce the rate overall, Peta moves for a complete cessation of animal consumption even though a more pragmatic solution long term might be to simply encourage people to eat meat only once or twice a week instead of on a daily basis.

It's probably more effective in the long run to support organizations working to reduce factory farming and improve environmental standards. Don't forget that for a long time, the main source of revenue for wetlands preservation came from duck hunters [omg self-link].
posted by Deathalicious at 11:22 PM on October 22, 2008


When your name can also be used as a verb that means driving a hook through your head, it's time for a serious image makeover.
Perhaps one day kitten will become a synonym for slaughter, and PETA will have to rebrand again.
posted by finite at 1:04 AM on October 23, 2008


(Knowing how delicious sea kittens are, who can help but wonder about the land kittens?)
posted by finite at 1:05 AM on October 23, 2008


PETA Kooks blog.
posted by eccnineten at 6:57 AM on October 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


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