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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Cultural Curiosities of the Singaporean Fat Cats


Cats never ceased to amaze me! It's not because they look cute and all but cats have always shown the fun side of pets (my apologies to all dog lovers out there!). Back home where I came from, I have a colony of cats. Actually, they are stray cats that settled in our feline-friendly abode. Although we never took care of each and everyone of them, they are free to chow down on leftover food we have. Not gourmet meals for them but it is one good free lunch.


Fast forward to Singapore, my encounter with fat cats in this concrete jungle of tall apartment blocks and monolithic street systems was just like seeing Puss in Boots with that innocent stare. How touching. I'm just curious how these cats became so sumo wrestler big. Too much food or unhealthy lifestyle? They are not forced feed like would-be foie gras ducks?

My fascination for these cats now turn to their differences. Cats back home form gangs in the hunt for food and scavenge leftovers. They attack helpless and weak ones. Singaporean cats lie on the pavement all day and get lucky with food that fattens them even more. Good thing, I'm not the only one who noticed them. In fact, an Internet phenomena or meme was born for these lovable creatures with a standing ovation applause on 4chan posters who gave us LOLCAT.

Although, the credit should definitely go to the 1870's when Britsh photographer Harry Pointer introduced us to the art of taking lovely photos of these cats. In 1905, his namesake Harry Whittier Frees took it to the next level by putting cats in postcards with matching dress to boot. What can you do when you see a fat cat along the way? Take a picture and post it here!
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