This video is a lot funnier than it should be, given what they're doing to the cat. But consider that it wasn't a spiky wall or anything, and even the most loving cat owners torment their cats at least a little bit. It's petty revenge for the fact that they own you.

I'm currently listening to Guster's fine album Lost and Gone Forever, which I recommend, and reading The Story of English, except I'm reading the 1952 original, by Mario Pei--I see there's 3rd edition, possibly an entirely different book, by Robert Macneil, who wrote the horrifyingly dull Wordstruck that none of us could force our way through as summer reading before senior year. This, along with similar problems with Giants In the Earth--a stilted, uninspired epic of Scandinavians farming the frontier and acting alternately stupid, psychotic, and depressed--kept me from getting an A in the class from Mr. Scanlon, despite getting As on all of his papers, itself a nigh-unheard-of feat.

Pei's book is fascinating, though, not only for its central subject matter--I find narratives of language almost endlessly interesting and took about 4 similar books out of the library at the same time--but how it's placed in time. It's aged well because our views of Anglo-Saxon haven't changed much in the past 50 years, but his mentions of all issues Communist and racial bear the marks of even the open-minded speakers of the era, mentioning "Senator McCarthy" rather casually and respectfully (even those of us who weren't yet born now feel free to scorn his memory), and speaking of "Reds" and "Pinkos" as though there's a defined difference (it sounds like there was). I appreciate Pei's appreciation of cultural differences, and his willingness to actually have a non-relativist opinion and declare that, for example, English is literarily more expressive than, say, Zulu. Most books from 1952 are no longer worth reading, so it's fun to find one that is.

I sort of feel like I'm still crabby about not having somebody to be stupid for each other with. But that doesn't entirely fit either. Enh. Life goes on. I got shit to do.