How To Stimulate The Economy

December 10, 2008 at 4:19 pm 4 comments

I recently spent time trying to figure out a way  I could  help stimulate the economy.  All the experts say that the best thing for me to do is  spend lots of money buying things I don’t need.   We need to keep the wheels of the economy greased.  Or is that greasy?

I spent the weekend looking around my place  figuring out what old, useless items I could replace.  One thing kept coming to my attention: the cats.

My cats are older models and, quite frankly, aren’t running with the pep that they used to have. I know cats sleep a lot, but twenty-three and a half hours per day?  That seems a little excessive even by cat standards.  It was obviously time for some new, younger, more modern cats in this household.

“Out with the old and in with the new,” is our civilizations battle cry, after all.

catbelly(Many people ask me what it means when cats expose their bellies.  They seem to think that it means that the cats are comfortable with their environment.  Actually, it means that your cats are mentally handicapped and have forgotten which way is up.  It is time for a new cat.)

As anyone who has  delved into cat acquirement knows, the first step is to decide on the model of cat you wish to purchase.  Personally, I have a soft spot for the Asian models – such as a Balinese, Japanese bobtail or something from the Hello Kitty line – as they tend to run longer on less food than North American cats.  Check out this video that  shows the ease of maintenance that is required of Japanese cats:

I began by checking the classified section of my local newspaper.  What a disappointment.  Most of the ads were for free cats, which defeated the purpose of obtaining new cats in order to stimulate the economy.  I noticed, though, that there were several ads for exotic models, such as Main Coons selling for $500.  Main Coons are a little more cat that I’m used to, but they have a solid body and are able to take a lot of wear and tear.  I called the number and inquired how much they would give me for trade-in.  They laughed.

Apparently cat breeders don’t take trades.  They informed me that there is no money in the second-hand cat market.

I was shocked.

This threw a monkey-wrench into my plans.  Five-hundred dollars was more than I  planned on spending for my new cats.

Next, I went to the animal shelter and asked the man at the front desk to see his newest models.  After giving me a questioning look he took me to a large room of shelves filled with cats.

There were a lot of second-hand cats available, and although I was not as interested in that market, I have to admit that some of the used cats were in good shape!  Plenty of the used cats had been previously owned for less than a year – I assumed that meant that the original owners could no longer afford payments and the cats had been repossessed.

fuzzycat(When your cat starts to become unfocused, it might be time to consider a new model.)

I noticed a couple of kittens in one of the display cases and immediately fell in love.  One was a long-haired black kitty with big, green eyes, while the second one was a short-haired orange, sporty looking model.

It was time to negotiate.  I feigned disinterest so that my opponent wouldn’t suspect my true desire.

“They are a little small,” I said.  “How fast do they run?”

“Oh, you know, they’re quick little buggers,” he responded.  “You’ve gotta keep an eye on them.”

“Hmm.  I don’t know.  Are they good to take off-road?”

“What?  What do you mean, off-road?”

“You know, like on road trips.  Do they travel well?”

“Uh.  I don’t know.  How would I know that?”

“I just assumed you would know your stock.”  I gave a sigh, and let my eyes wander over some other cats hoping that the attendant would think I was losing interest.  He was good at his job, unfortunately, and stood his ground.

“We prefer to find a home that will take both of these guys.  They are so attached to each other that it would be a shame to separate them.  Would that work for you?”

I shrugged.  “I suppose that would work.”  I yawned.  It was time to get to the nitty-gritty of the negotiations.  “I already have two cats that I’m looking to trade-in.  How much do you think I could get for them?  I’d have to get enough to make the price of these two reasonable in order to make a deal here today.  I’ve got my eye on a hot tabby at one of your competitors and they are willing to knock 50% off the price if I trade them my old cats.  Can you match that?”

The attendant stared at me for several moments – I assumed he was contemplating my offer – before responding.  “Uh, let me get this straight.  You’re trying to replace your old cats with a couple of kittens?  That’s just not right!”

I grinned.  “Ahh, you got me. What I’m really trying to do is stimulate the economy by spending money on some new cats, but I can’t afford the prices.  I was hoping to get a discount by trading in my old cats.  Think you can help me out here?  I’d really like to take these two off your hands.”

The attendant cleared his throat.  “Well…uh…that’s a…uh…great idea, but we don’t take trade ins.  When people get cats it should be for life.  Some people are irresponsible and leave their cats behind when they move and force their former pets to become strays, or they abandon them at shelters for both good and not-so-good reasons.  That’s where most of these cats come from.  Sometimes people don’t realize the commitment it takes to care for animals, and they lose interest.  Some of these cats were Christmas presents for young children, and the parents have no clue as to what it takes to be a responsible pet owner.  They figure it’s a cat and cats don’t require much care, so it will be easy.  They soon realize that cats do require care, and it takes money, time and commitment to give the cats a good life.  You should never get someone a cat as a present, especially kids, unless you are sure that they want to have a cat live with them, and they are able to care for the cat properly.

basketofkittens(New cats may look like they are easy to maintain, but actually take a lot of work.  Kitten-evil is a much more intense type of evil than regular evil.  Adult cats usually have a little less evil motivating their behaviour, but take just as much attention.)

“Sounds good,” I said, having blanked-out half way through this fella’s speech.  “So you won’t give me anything for my cat’s then?”

“No, no trade-ins”

I nodded.  This changed things, but  I was still determined to stimulate the economy.  “Well, how much do these new cats cost?”

“It’s all by donation.  You decide how much you want to pay.  We mostly just want to find these guys a good home.  They are expensive to upkeep, though, so as much as you can give would be great.”

I decided that it was my duty to spend some money.  Since I really didn’t need four cats I made a donation to the cat shelter instead, and left the kittens where they were.  The attendant said that this was probably a good idea.  I wrote a check and headed back home.

I walked in my door and noticed that the old, useless cats were asleep on the couch.  I put a handful of treats between them, figuring that they would notice when they woke up and  might wonder if Santa had visited and left them presents.  Unfortunately the fat one woke up first and ate all the treats before the skinny one could get any.   I guess that’s why he’s the skinny one.

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Entry filed under: Cats, humour, opinion, personal. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Why Can’t I Be You Redux: An Apple A Day…

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Alex L.  |  December 13, 2008 at 3:44 am

    You are an economic hero. A good way to find cats though is to wait until one shows up at your house, then just keep it. Thats what we’ve done with all ours. You can just throw away the collars and name tags if they have them.

    Reply
  • 2. C. Fraser  |  December 13, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    In these trying economic times it is important to think outside of the litter box.

    I like your suggestion on cat acquirement. It can only be described as brilliant. I’m going to put a few bowls of food by my front door now to see what happens.

    Reply
  • 3. H. Robert S. J. Savarie  |  December 14, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Great post! My cats say “Why don’t you humans just relax. Print and Give each person in Canada a million dollars and shut up already!”

    Reply
  • 4. C. Fraser  |  December 14, 2008 at 11:19 pm

    H. Robert: Your cats have a great idea! They should be Prime Minister!!

    Reply

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