Cauli Le Chat

Cauli Le Chat
Cauli Le Chat, MPL Roving Reporter

Thursday, March 3, 2011

(Opposable) Thumbs Up!

Thanks again to CircMaster's holiday alertness, we have been advised that today (March 3) is "What if cats and dogs had opposable thumbs" day.  (Truly.  You can look it up here and here.)  You had better believe that the world would be a different place, and it would be run more sensibly, rest assured.  Here is my laundry list answering the holiday's question:

  • Doorknob Principle:  Generations of felines and slobberdogs have been stymied by closed doors because of an inability to learn the doorknob principle.  Fans of Gary Larson's The Far Side® will remember this classic cartoon, which you may click to enlarge (it might work--try it).

The legendary Punkin was one kitty who mastered the doorknob principle--he could open any door, as long as the doorknob had a handle, like so:

Loose screws--Did Scowl-Face install this?

I recognize that a doorknob, by definition, is round and smooth, like this:

. . . which, admittedly, even the great Punkin could not negotiate, but, still, it was a pretty amazing feat for a feline.  With opposable thumbs, however, the doorknob poses no problems whatsoever.  Slobberdogs and cats could open doors as freely as humans, so we could go out, come back in, and go back out, repeatedly, as often as we liked.  That degree of independence is worth a fortune in canned tuna in oil.

  • Can Opener Conundrum:  This has been a thorn in the paws of slobberdogs and felines since time immemorial.  Humans serve many valuable functions, primarily as servants, but this has been a truly vital utility for people to perform for us so-called "household pets."  If we (kitties and slobberdogs) had opposable thumbs, then we could open our own cans of tuna-in-oil, ordinary cat or slobberdog food (for the pedestrian palate), or other tinned treats.  Whether traditionally sealed (see below) or featuring pull-tab technology (see further below), the ol' opposable thumbs could tackle these opening tasks easily.
Why not open something useful, like brand-name cat food?

Better.  But this one's empty!  Is this some kind of cruel joke?

 Yes, it's a pull-tab dress.  (Eye-roll) 
This is why kitties and slobberdogs go au naturel

  • Drinking Bottled Water:  Let me ask you frankly:  Would you enjoy drinking water from a bowl or dish?  Remember, the water has been sitting there since who knows when, and it's stale and tastes, shall we politely say, like cheval poo.  Once again, the opposable thumb would enable cats and slobberdogs to whip-off those twist caps and drink our water from bottles--just like those high-class humans who sit around posh establishments and try to act sophisticated.  The best part would be no backwash!  Think about that next time you drink from a shared water dish.
If only (sigh) ...

  • Turning book pages:  Presently, when a feline tries to read a book, s/he must turn the pages by extending his/her foreclaws, inserting same through the paper, and pulling toward oneself.  This depreciates the book's value and understandably angers librarians, who, after all, are providing access to print materials.  That opposable thumb would sure make page-turning a proverbial snap (or page-flip).
 There it is!  Opposable thumb at work

 Give that slobberdog a board book--something s/he can handle

Hard work without opposable thumbs

Wears me out just thinking about it
  • Driving Motor Vehicles:  Currently, cats and slobberdogs must be chauffeured, because, once again, humans are blessed with the opposable thumb to grip the steering wheel.  If we had those dexterous digits, we could drive ourselves.  Of course, being chauffeured is more befitting a feline's social station; slobberdogs just hang their heads out the windows.
 You think she'll ever get the smell out of that car?

Pick a lane, already!  Geez!

 Great, if somebody's operating the pedals

 We thought of some other uses for opposable thumbs, like reshelving library books, working at circulation check-out (or check-in, for that matter), and using computers, but kitties and slobberdogs would not want to eliminate all people jobs.  We're compassionate that way, and good servants are hard to find.

Giving the Opposable "Thumbs Up" Signal, If I Had Any, That Is,

Cauli Le Chat
MPL Roving Reporter
Digital News Bureau

(Get It?  Fingers?  Digits?  Digital?  Come on--that's an underhanded pitch, there, right over the plate.)

You can see the legendary Punkin in our book trailer below.  Watch for him between the 1:03 to 1:12 time marks.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Cauli and friends, Yes those primates take their opposable thumb for granted! love the French for cats video!


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