There Is No Cat

As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly

Tuesday, June 4, 2002

Help! Help! I'm being repressed!

People who try to justify the existence of the monarchy in the modern era inevitably resort to "tradition". Don Murray of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation notes that much of the pomp and circumstance surrounding the Queen's Jubilee is "tradition" made up on the spot. And sometimes traditions that are invented get uninvented, as with the street parties that sprang up 25 years ago. According to Murray, Buckingham Palace would have liked to see the same thing happen this time, but Her Majesty's Subjects seem to be less enthusiastic. So the Palace diverted the nation's attention by throwing a couple of concerts so nobody would notice that there were a lot fewer parties than last time.

The whole idea of monarchy in the modern era seems farcical. So it only seems appropriate to point to the bit of Monty Python and the Holy Grail that makes this point better than I ever could:

DENNIS Look, strange women lying on their backs in ponds handing out swords ... that's no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.

ARTHUR Be quiet!

DENNIS You can't expect to wield supreme executive power just 'cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!

(Thanks Dan Say for pointing out the CBC article.)

Posted at 8:21 PM

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This site is copyright © 2002-2017, Ralph Brandi.

What do you mean there is no cat?

"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."

- Albert Einstein, explaining radio


There used to be a cat

[ photo of Mischief, a black and white cat ]

Mischief, 1988 - December 20, 2003

[ photo of Sylvester, a black and white cat ]

Sylvester (the Dorito Fiend), who died at Thanksgiving, 2000.


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