Likelihoods and Logics
DOI link for Likelihoods and Logics
Likelihoods and Logics book
In hot pursuit of the canary, this cat, this villainous film-cartoon cat, running two-footed and two-fisted, treads on the upturned fangs of garden rakes, flattens his features on flapping fence-boards, rolls up like a blind on sudden laundry-lines, is piledriven chin-deep by a toppling telegraph pole, fragmented by falling masonry, paunched by a flying anvil, and still, still pursues, unrelenting and undeterred. How will he catch his quarry? His catty gift of climbing is useless. The canary has grease, to pour down the pole; has a cross-cut saw, for lopping off branches; can whisk out from some recess of its tiny plumage a large black object, bearing the legend 1 cwt, which it will deposit in the obligingly upturned paws of the horrified feline, just as he is about to complete his ascent of the bird table. Well, then - the rocket deftly strapped to the spine with four expert hitches and a dainty reef-knot on the midriff? Disastrous; the telephone wires deflect its course, and poor pussy explodes starrily, nosedown in the rose bed. So what about that length of rope that should swing us neatly through the window of the bedroom where the wretched bird is preening itself? Good, if only our calculations are right; if wrong, we make a raw, spreadeagled hole in the clapboard side of the neat white North American house. Yet here's a notion - a smart technological trick with the lady's stays, providentially found in the ancient steamer trunk in the loft. A pair of wings are manufactured in a trice; soon the cat is airborne and confidently aerobatic; but ah! - presently the laces break, the wings droop, and our hooligan hero plummets heavily onto the prone form of the snoozing bulldog. All expedients are exhausted, it seems; yet wait one moment; still something remains. Grinning apologetically (one might almost say sheepishly), the cat produces from his fur a crayon, and spirits up a large sheet of card, on which he writes, and exhibits to us, the following
message: ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN IN A CARTOON. He then uses the same crayon to draw on the air a flight of steps, up which he nimbly skips to reach the branch where the astonished canary is waiting, for once not wholly prepared.