ISSUE 39

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 For the first time in evolutionary history, cats have signed a non-proliferation weapons agreement with mice. It struck most by surprise, as the near-constant battle between the creatures was believed to be innate, the mere sight of a mouse causing cats to go into what biologists have deemed HOLY-MAMMA-I-GOTTA-GET-DAT-MOUSE syndrome.  
  Among the most famous signatories of the treaty are Tom and Jerry, the celebrated duo known for domestic violence, murder, and humor. How they are still living is a matter of great debate among scientists, some believing they have stronger exoskeletons or evolved a sort of “airbag complex.” Others testify Tom and Jerry are, in fact, minor deities. But those people are idiots.
  After announcing the treaty at the White House and the local Chuck E. Cheese’s, Tom and Jerry shook hands, signed the document, and smashed Senator Connelly with a frying pan as a joke. Senator Connelly spent two weeks in the hospital and still believes he is a werewolf. This has yet to be confirmed.
  Commenting on the treaty, Tom viewed it as one more step towards peace with all animals, whom he hoped would leave their carnivore ways for a life based around organic vegetables, pea protein, and blocks of wobbly white… stuff.
  “We’re reconsidering what our evolutionary instinct looks like in a post-industrial economy,” Tom said. “Do I want to eat meat when, as a society, we can’t really afford it? What are the psychological roots to my problems? Why do I—as a grey feline—feel a murder instinct?”  
  Most were shocked at how articulate and emotionally aware Tom was, nearly ninety percent of people believing he was mute or, you know, just a cat. After his statement, Tom began a forty-five-minute cleaning ritual and slept for the rest of the day.
  Jerry, on the other hand, held forth on the relative difficulties of low-income mice households and discrimination against rodents as a whole. Fifteen minutes later, he was caught by the pest control department and deported to Mexico before the department could be convinced of both his citizenship and non-pest status. He was last reported living in an attic in northern Wyoming. 
​ Other signatories of the treaty include Wiley Coyote, the Roadrunner, Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, and—for some inexplicable reason—Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. According to Bugs Bunny, Johnson thought he was auditioning for another terrible movie.
 What does all of this mean for the average American? It means you can’t trust your cat anymore—or your mouse, if that’s the sort of company you keep. When cats and mice have treaties, what’s to stop Russia from allying with bears and hacking into your cell phone/garbage/man cave? Why can’t China unite with pandas and slowly give up on procreation?
  It means crisis for the Americans for whom that word still has any meaning. But when the planet is turning brown like a marshmallow over a fire, when politicians are running naked in the field, when Godzilla is destroying the Golden Gate Bridge again, and the peanut butter is out, many Americans have taken to hiding in their basement or moved to places like America but don’t have the same name.
  Many of these Americans have accidentally moved to Hawaii in a confusion regarding the islands’ statehood. Researchers have found it now has 120 percent more people who sniffed Sharpies during geography class. It’s a rough road ahead for those people, especially as understanding time relative to distance is near impossible, and large stretches of water suddenly appear wherever they want to go.
 Besides continued American migration, however, there’s no way to predict the future. It might involve more cats in leadership positions and either an explosion of mouse-related pantry vandalism, increased purchases of mouse traps, or the general integration of mice into the human community.
  As usual with these things, the weapons treaty could devolve into nothing but another failed political experiment. One day a cat will decide to hell with veganism, sneak over to the hole in the wall, and then get blown up with five pounds of TNT. If there’s any really solid lesson here, it’s that mice always have heavy explosives lying around, and they are more than willing to use them despite whatever peace treaty is in effect.

             
Gorillas are immigrating to Colorado.
Find out what not to do here.
   
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