Do your friends ever send you a photo that only depicts people and not cats, not a single solitary cat? When your friends e-mail Christmas, new baby, or engagement photos, do they write “PHOTOS OF CATS” in the subject line to fool you into viewing non-cat related images? Can you not stop crying every time your secret underlying depravity drives you to view pornography due to the consistent lack of cats contained therein?
Well, you can stop shrieking endlessly at the basement wall because there’s an iPad/iPhone app called Cat Effects that allows you to add cats to any photo. A photo of your college roommate with his new fiancé? Insert a cat tilting its head sideways in that quizzical way they do when they’re hungry. A photo of the niece you haven’t seen for five years due to The Endless Sadness that overtakes you every time you set foot outdoors? Insert a jumping cat, mouth opened wide in a meow you can almost hear (in your mind). A photo of some acquaintance’s irrelevant child on Santa’s lap? Insert two kittens swatting each other with their tiny paws. In fact, paste them directly over the little boy’s dumb face. Enlarge them to cover Santa’s face too, to cover the sister standing nearby, to consume the entire photo — yessssss. Replace the child with kittens, replace all the children with kittens, every talking smiling laughing child replaced with an adorable kitten, yes, oh God yes, MY EYES ARE VIBRATING IN MY SKULL.
Here’s an iPad game where you play as an overweight cat born without arms or legs, transported to a godless universe of pure insanity. Floating high in the stratosphere, you roll around a gigantic deformed dog head puking rainbows while you devour socks scattered through the disconnected head chunks. As you devour more and more socks, you get larger and larger until you can devour bits of the dog’s head. Once you devour the entire head, then you are the only thing left in the world; in fact, you are the world, and that is true victory.
Other levels include a duck head floating on multicolored clouds in a universe made of blue carpet and some sort of glove thing with eyeballs. In the duck level you collect teddy bears, while in the glove one you collect crowns. Based on this imagery, it’s clear: the message the creators are asserting is that we inhabit a mad chaotic reality, and the only source of solace, the only way to cope is by replacing all of it with cats. Also eating. The only way to cope is by constantly petting your cats and eating.
Nyan Cat: Lost in Space
In Nyan Cat, you can play as a half cat/ half pop tart creature who runs through outer space streaming rainbows, or you can play as a half demon cat/ half waffle creature with huge fangs, red eyes, and a trail of gray sadness. Your goal is to collect as much ice cream, donuts, milk, candy canes, and cake as possible before you inevitably tumble to your doom. Along the way, Nyan Cat can take ecstasy, smoke pot, and fly like a rocket. He can also put on a cape and fly around like Superman. Sometimes he floats around in a bubble, going bwop bwop bwop. This, might I add, is a real game, and not, as I thought at first, a vivid hallucination of a broken mind.
Where is Nyan Cat running, and why can’t he slow down? Doesn’t he know it’d be easier to avoid vicious dogs, waffle cats, aliens, or falling to his death if he simply slowed down a little? Doesn’t he care? No, his life is about gorging on sweets and dairy products, and he will not compromise his forward momentum with caution or restraint. Like Bam Margera or one of those extremely friendly homeless drug addicts who sings old blues songs and gives high-fives, Nyan Cat lives his life full throttle, without regard to his own safety.
The world is filled with other creatures, running back and forth, leading pointless empty lives — all of them existing only to harm you. It’s a world where Nyan Cat, after collecting the heart power-up, can send love to other creatures, but will receive none in return. Ever. It’s a world where the only form of love is unrequited, and yet Nyan Cat continues to scamper along platforms, drowning his secret sadness in ice cream and cake, smiling all the while, always smiling — perhaps because he knows death is only a few minutes away at the most. One missed jump, a brief fall, and then the sweet embrace of nothingness, wrapped in the infinite black blanket of no-thoughts, free at last from his pain. So yeah, it’s a pretty fun game.
Touch Pets Cats
Read this sentence and try to wrap your mind around it: you use your finger to pet a virtual cat all day. All day. Pet the cat all day and watch hearts erupt from its head while it purrs. Take a brush out of the box at the top of the screen and brush your cat’s fur until your heart swells so large it bursts. What’s that warm aching sensation in your chest? That’s the darkness leaving your filthy black soul, you animal.
First, you pick a cat from the wide assortment available at the adoption center. I picked an orange cat and named him Steve Buscemi. Steve Buscemi is almost as adorable as the real Steve Buscemi. I fed Steve Buscemi, gave him water, and then put down a litter box. Next, this “game” required me to, no joke, click a little scooper, bring it down to the litter box, scoop the lumps of cat piss, and then dispose of the mess. I was flabbergasted to watch my finger drag across the screen to scoop cat piss. I thought: is this happening right now? Am I actually performing this action? “What am I doing with my life?” I said to the iPad. Oh God, this is what going crazy feels like. The creeping madness. Tickling my mind with its long bony fingers.