They tell me I’ll need a week of recuperation, i.e. no going in to work, but that’s simply not on. Ideally I’d walk straight from the recovery room to my office (it’s only a five-minute walk). However, I will try to stay home for a day. In the meantime, this seems like a good time to start the cat contest.
The rules are simple. Send in one photo of your cat (or cats, if you’ve more than one), along with a paragraph of no more than 250 words giving a backstory. This could be either a description of how you acquired the beast, some of his winsome habits, or anything else to show the awesomeness of your kitteh. There will be three prizes. “Win” gets an autographed hardback edition of WEIT, while “place” and “show” get autographed paperbacks. And of course the winners (and probably others) will be featured here as well.
Even if you don’t think your cat will win, send it anyway. They will be great material for future posts on readers’ cats. (Be aware that submission entails my right to post your photo/entry).
Judging: There will be three celebrity judges (chosen for their atheism and love of cats): Ophelia Benson, Russell Blackford, and Miranda Hale. They will rank the entries, and the winner will be the cat with the highest overall ranking. The decision of the judges is final.
Deadline: Because it may take time to photograph your beast and write a paragraph, I’m closing the contest in one week: 5 p.m., December 1.
Where to send your entries: if you google “Jerry Coyne University of Chicago,” it will take you to my University web page with my email address. Send stuff there.
To show what you’re up against, I present a formidable contender. Kink—named for his malformed tail—is the beloved cat of “Doc Bill,” who posts here frequently. Doc Bill sent me this message and photo some time ago:
Just send me the prize and retire it. Kink’s a winner in all respects. Social, vocal, smart (vocab of 12+ words) and laid back. Srsly, is anybody going to beat this?
Fig. 1. The haughty Kink