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Humor Medicine Skepticism/critical thinking

Oscar the Death Kitty is no more?

Blog friend Abel over at Terra Sigillata pointed me to a story claiming that Oscar the Death Kitty, who became famous (or notorious) for his alleged ability to detect the impending death of residents of the nursing home at which he lives, so much so that some of the staff had even started calling family to tell them that time was short whenever the Grim Reaping Kitty curled up with their loved one, is no more:

PROVIDENCE, RI – Oscar, the nursing home cat who could seemingly sense the impending death of patients, was found dead early yesterday. The cat gained recent notoriety when reports of his ability to detect the impending death of the terminally ill became public. Seemingly aware that death was at hand, Oscar would reportedly climb into the bed of patients during their final hours.

Officials at the facility would not reveal the cause of death, but did acknowledge rumors that the cat was becoming increasingly unpopular among the patients. One knowledgeable source – who agreed to speak with us on the condition of anonymity – confirmed increasing animosity toward the animal, and that a dented bedpan was found near the body.

According to our source, the recent publicity of Oscar’s unique insight spread quickly throughout the facility. Patients in the terminal ward became increasingly upset at the sight of the cat, prompting administrators to move Oscar to another floor. After an unexpected death on that floor, Oscar quickly became quite unwelcome there too.

I was afraid this was going to happen. Maybe that was confirmation bias too. Whatever the case, Scamp had better watch his back.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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