Every August something special happens in New York that I look forward to the whole year long- the Algonquin Hotel Cat Fashion show.
Is it because I want to coo over adorable widdle kitties with their fancy costumes?
No. Emphatically, no.
I look forward to it because I hate cats.
They are terrible ill-tempered assholes of animals that are lying in wait to kill me at any moment and seeing them tormented in hideous outfits brings me overwhelming joy. Like, eating the best cookies ever that were baked especially for me by David Bowie while China Miéville tells me a story and Nathan Fillion strokes my hair kind of joy.
Now, the literary nerds among you are probably thinking "Algonquin Hotel? The Algonquin Hotel, home to the famous round table and haunt of great writers like Dorothy Super Bad Ass Parker? That Algonquin Hotel?" to which I sigh and nod my head and vow to read something good when I get home as should you all.
Sure, ostensibly the event is for charity or whatever and it gives rich old ladies something to do to keep them off the sauce. But really it is all about organized feline humiliation, delightful!
Allow me to share with you some of my favorite competitors from this year’s event.
The Great Purrismo
Known far and wide for his haughty demeanor and magnetic charm, the Great Purrismo (born Snowflake) is rumored to be the 12th bodily incarnation of the soul of Aleister Crowley’s magikal cat Fred.
Baron Fluffer Von Snafflepants III
(Of the Paducah Snafflepants’) Is a 3rd time returning champion this year. You can attribute his dour expression to the fact that he was told immediately before the competition began that his luggage, including his hand caught artisan Scottish Salmon jerky treats and custom crown collection, had been lost in transit.
Lady Heloise Cartington
There were whispers that this was Lady Heloise’s last year competing due to her growing addiction to prescription painkillers. A nasty habit that she picked up after a severe tail injury curtailed her ballet career. Some say that she has been appearing in lesser competitions to fund her habit. We can’t say for certain that the Lady Eloise Artington that appeared in Ames Iowa’s Cat Fancy Invitational last March was the self same cat but I think we all agree it’s quite a coincidence. Tragic, really.
Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez
Or Dirty Sanchez as he’s known in certain circles. Ramirez claims to be a Spanish aristocrat but his accent and taste for haggis make many wonder if he isn’t lying about his heritage. He is, however, a fierce competitor and is frequently heard hissing "there can be only one."
Fiendish Doctor Mew
Oh fiendish Doctor Mew, shrouded in mystery and evil. Legend has it that he was one of the 3,000 that joined Xu Fu on his mission to retrieve the elixir of life from the immortals at the behest of ruler Qin Shi Huang. When Xu Fu never returned from his mission it was said that he settled a new foreign land. In actuality, after their mission discovered the elixir of life Mew murdered the entire crew, including his master, and kept the secret of eternal life for himself. In the intervening centuries he cast a spell on an army of monkey workers to tend the poppy fields that supplied his highly profitable opium trade. Until he was captured by a vacationing elderly couple and brought to America and forced to compete in fashion shows. We are certain his revenge is planned and he’s just biding his time.
Oh Dack Rambo, the rough and tumble working class cat with the soft coat and penetrating eyes that has made every lady purr this year. No one is really sure where this swoon-worthy rogue came from. Rumor has it that he was working the street when he was discovered by star maker Henry Wilson. A good flea bath and image make over later he swept the show and was named Mr. Personality.
But, the best part of the story is what happened backstage. You see, Mr. Rambo didn’t just capture the hearts of the judges, he caught the eye of noted beauty Lady Demelza Tarkington much to the chagrin of her controlling husband Lord Beardsley Tarkington.
Much has been made of how the years have not been kind to old Beardsley. He is now, unfortunately, 3 times the cat he used to be. The less generous suggest that young Demelza is more interested in his pockets so it shouldn’t be surprising that flirtation lead to this dramatic altercation-
What is most surprising is that apparently, Lady Tarkington has left her husband and is now living in sin with Dack Rambo! Quelle scandal!
I personally can’t wait to see how next year plays out when the furry love triangle comes together again. Will Dack and Demelza last? Will this be the shock Beardsley needs to get himself back to the dashing cat he used to be?
Only time will tell.