Category Archives: Variety Show

Last Cat On Mars Presents: Just Sayin’ – Chess is as Chess Does

As a feline with quite useful paws, its pains me to say that it is rather difficult for me to play the ancient game of chess without mauling the innocent pieces before they even launch themselves on their board-y crusades.

However, I have put my perfect little paws to good use and discovered that the set depicted in the image below was originally created by F. Lanier Graham, a former curator at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (he also curated at the National Gallery of Australia), though he has yet to visit the other MoMA, the Museum of Martian Art (one day, perhaps).

The set in the fairly able hands of Octavia and Arpeggia was created by our beloved Lorrie with her own two versatile hands. She likes to fly under the radar most of the time, and is responsible for a lot of the tuna that gets slung my way. Thank you, Lorrie, for the loan of your lovely homage to Mr Graham, minimalist extraordinaire, if you ask me, and I know you do. And also for the beautiful chess board you also made with those same hands (as opposed to any borrowed ones).

You can read more about chess sets and see Mr Graham’s set if you look at this Smithsonian magazine article, and very interesting it is, too, even for non-players. Enjoy.

Chess set by Lanier Graham with two minifigures identical twins about to play a game

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Last Cat On Mars Presents: Just How Long Is A Thin Blue Line, Anyway?

There is no need at all for law enforcement on Mars, as you might expect. All residents are law- and paw-abiding, if a little skittish. And that thin line? Not that we need one, you understand. But if we had one, it would be red, Martian red, with an orange tinge for summer days.

Police officers standing in front of a thin blue line and wondering about it.

Last Cat On Mars Presents: Homophones – Gotta Love ‘Em

The humble homophone is responsible for more wars than you might imagine. Also, funny and endearing confusion, leading to war. Then there’s misinterpretation, leading to war. Then there are moose, funny, confusing, peacenik moose.

Woman on phone to mother telling her she's about to mousse her hair while a moose looks on, wondering.

Last Cat On Mars Presents: Would You Like Your Mime With Cherry Glaze Or Without?

It wasn’t often that this disparate group of friends – no, let’s just say acquaintances – got together for an outdoor do. And on this occasion there was no-one to naysay their menu choice, especially not the nameless mime, who was so dedicated to his craft that silence was his only riposte to the terrifying prospect of himself as imminent repast.

[Note: I have been reliably informed that the scene depicted below is an example of what is known these days as Fake News. So fear not, dear friends, no mime was harmed in the construction of this doolally setup. Well, perhaps a little singed, but them’s the breaks, or the breakfasts, as it were. Mmmmm, roast, mmmmm.]

Mime tied to a spit about to be roasted while others twirl and ask about marshmallows

Last Cat On Mars Presents: Climate Change, it’s a thing. Yes, indeed.

When I was but a wee kitten, my parents and overly competitive sibling and I would travel into the hill country to visit Mama’s sister, Beck From Jupiter, and her husband, Lomas (we never worked out where he was from, lovely head of fur, though).

There I would play in the yard with my overly competitive sibling while the adults got on with their plans to rule the cosmos. He was older than me, OCS was, and could be relied upon to initiate ridiculous games and quizzes, such as, ‘How full is that water tank?’ Anxious to please, and win, I would spend most of the day tap-tap-tapping at the water tank with my tiny, ineffectual little knuckles (yes, of course, cats have knuckles, they’re just well hidden) and asking, ‘Is that it? Is that it?’ of my OCS who, of course, always replied, ‘No, it is not, young Last. Keep tapping,’ as he sashayed around the fenceline in search of, shall we say, playful lizards.

It was a source of persistent curiosity to my mother that, at the end of these idyllic sessions on the hill, I would be completely incapable of holding the tidbits of river trout Mama handed over to my OCS and me in the back seat. My bruised knuckles would refuse to co-operate, and eventually, after much meowing and consideration, she would haul me into the front seat and onto her lap where she’d paw-feed me the teeny morsels.

Needless to say, my OCS in the back seat all alone was rather livid with this outcome, but was I devoid of a master plan just because I was younger, tinier, adorable-er, bruised-er? No, gentle reader, no, I was not.

Carry on.

Climate change featuring frogs, a cow, a water tank.

Last Cat On Mars Presents: Capes Alive, Cape-a-Licious

Fun fact: Did you know that Superman’s most famous but little quoted quotation is: ‘Cape me, Robin, and be quick about it.’ It is important to note, however, that Superman uttered this gem when he was in a delusional state due to over-consumption of Superglue (he thought it was a treat made especially for him), believing himself to be that other famous capester, Batman.

Other than that, we’re with our caped friend in the comic: we just love capes. They are particularly useful here on Mars when the north-east-south-west wind blows a gale, which it does quite often, bloody thing.

Capes hanging on a clothesline and a minifigure wearing Thursday's cape.