It’s another first world stress relief innovation. Ireland’s first cat café is due to open in Dublin this month. Cat will not be on the menu; nor will said cats, notwithstanding their clevericity, be the customers. The cat café is for people who don’t have room at home for a pet cat but would like some coffee cat time. It will have its own community of cats wandering around waiting to be observed and played with by cat-loving customers.
But why stop at cats? Why not have a TD café? Most people I know would not have room in their house for a TD. They would like to get their hands on them though, and in what better place than a dedicated TD café? Think of all the cronies, sycophants and acolytes who could sit a TD on their lap and tickle it under the chin. Imagine the purrs of approval emanating from feral and thoroughbred TDs. It would be a great hangout for party activists clawing their way up the scratching post of local politics. Sales figures for mechanical mice would soar.
Or better still, why not open the Dáil bar one night a week for members of the public to come in and observe TDs in their natural habitat just like in a nocturnal zoo? If you are very lucky you might get to see the rare breeds that only operate in the shadows and are prized for their natural facilities of furtiveness and stealth.
It’s true, cats and TDs possess many similar traits. Cats are shifty and sly. They lurk around neighbourhoods looking for undeserved treats. They dump in other people’s back yard and bury it, hoping it will go away – then you decide to dig the veggie patch and the dirty deed comes to the surface. Both cats and TDs have a natural urge to scratch the surface, but that’s as far as it goes before they slink off arched and ready to pounce on the next gullible citizen or popular cause.
Yes, cats and TDs have so much in common. They will take your unconditional love as their ordained right and then strut away when it suits them, conveniently forgetting that you ever existed now they have your vote. They have nine lives, always bouncing back from disaster to carry on brazen faced like nothing ever happened. Both species are adept at persecuting the little creatures – dangling their fragile hopes on the end of a ball of wool.
TDs and cats are always elbowing their way into prime positions –whether it’s curling up in front of a blazing fire, commandeering the comfy corner of the sofa or sunning themselves on the south facing window sill. Remember when Charlie Haughey turned up in Paris to greet Stephen Roche at the winning line of the Tour de France in 1987. He even joined Roche on the podium on the Champs-Élysées. You see, fat cats will always find a place in the sun, even when they haven’t earned it, and if they get stuck up a tree they are rescued by the fire brigade at the tax payer’s expense.
You might remember the Power to the People episode of the BBC’sYes, Prime Minister where two senior civil servants concocted the following piece of fallacious logic to deal with a political impasse:
All cats have four legs
My dog has four legs
Therefore, my dog is a cat.
Even the poor old dog loses its identity and ends up becoming a cat. Cats always get the cream.