Terra Sigillata

Among these pages, you’ve probably seen Orac’s take on the Providence, RI, feline resident of a nursing home that could allegedly sense when inhabitants were about to die, curling up with them during their final hours. (In critical thinking circles, Orac notes that these observations can be explained by confirmation bias.).

Well, The Daily Redundancy reports today that Oscar, the psychic cat, is no more:

Officials at the facility would not reveal the cause of death, but did acknowledge rumors that the cat was becoming increasingly unpopular among the patients. One knowledgeable source – who agreed to speak with us on the condition of anonymity – confirmed increasing animosity toward the animal, and that a dented bedpan was found near the body…

…”Good riddance.” said patient Gertrude Feinman, when told of the cat’s demise. “It would just sit there and stare at you – with this look on his face like ‘you’re next'”.


  1. #1 ERV
    August 18, 2007

    Oh my god. Thats disgusting. Poor cat 🙁

  2. #2 ERV
    August 18, 2007

    Spoof. You bastard! LOL!


  3. #3 sfjocko
    August 18, 2007
  4. #4 John Wilkins
    August 18, 2007

    Something that could be noted: why do cats always sit on the laps of people who hate them? Because for a cat a direct stare is a threat and challenge, and cat avoiders do not look at cats. People dying probably do not tend to stare at cats, but they are still a source of warmth.

  5. #5 wrpd
    August 18, 2007

    While I cannot comment on the demise of the cat-of-death, I can attest to the lethalness of metal bedpans. In the 1930’s a distant cousin of mine–my great-grandmother’s brother’s daughter–killed her obnoxious, nagging, bed-ridden husband by hitting him in the head with a bedpan. Family history does not note whether it was full or empty. Cousin Agnes spent the rest of her life in a nice home.

  6. #6 Oz
    August 19, 2007

    Actually, cats tend to hang around people who don’t like them as a way of pacifying the subject.
    Cats, studies show, tend to strive for calm and stable environments, and work actively to establish a milieu as such.
    This is, of course, clearer and clearer as the cat gets older.

  7. #7 henry
    August 19, 2007

    I would be very interested to see these studies you speak of. In my experience, cats are perfectly willing to hiss at you, and scratch you, just to be a bitch.

  8. #8 Doodette
    February 25, 2009

    Hey, Henry — as my Mom used to say when we ran in with cat wounds: “What were you doing to the cat?” To any cat you’re obviously a hostile giant. Everybody now do a collective hiss at Henry, and scratch him if he gets any nearer. Meow!

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