Over the past maybe couple months, I have been increasingly a fan of an internet phenomenon called Pusheen the Cat. I discovered Pusheen through Facebook chat and it was so incredibly cute that I surrendered a sense of seriousness about things to adore a fat kitty doing various things like riding a bike or reaching for a cupcake. I then discovered that Pusheen is a wider phenomenon than emojis, Pusheen has her own Tumblr, which is described in the metadata: ‘Miow! I am Pusheen the Cat. This is my blog’.
It is so incredibly adorable that I can only express its cuteness in Pusheen pictures.
Why am I writing a post about Pusheen? I suppose the reactions from it kind of had certain morals for me.
The surprise of its cuteness
A well known adege says: the internet is for cats. There is something directly appealing about the frivolous and the cute. I use Feedly to aggregate all of my news feeds and I use categories (schema) to sort through them. I have various ones to distinguish between philosophy feeds (such as philosophy/culture, philosophy/journals, philosophy/academic or philosophy/feminism) and I like to read on an extreme variety of feeds. Anything from Depressive black metal bands to secularism in the UK, and in between that very heavy sandwich I put a little bit of comedy into feedly. I love the website ‘pictureisunrelated’ for the ‘wtf’-reaction that I get from the pictures, and I quite enjoy sharing them with other people.
I love looking at Pusheen because it is something cute that I can communicate about and share with others. There are lots of things that I accept that not everyone (and in many cases, probably no-one) shares an interest with me regarding. I’ve shared Pusheen and Pusheen accessories with various friends. One new friend of mine I have a particularly strong bond with about Pusheen, we communicate our feelings through Facebook stickers of Pusheen.
Cuteness and gender lines
It’s not very male to talk about cuteness. I have a friend who is so proud that he won’t accept that he likes Pusheen, and so when I send him Pusheen images he says how ridiculous they are and then says: have you got any more? Reflecting on Pusheen shows me how differently gendered views of certain objects are, such as Pusheen sleeping on a bear. I wonder to myself if this male recitence about cuteness is a different way of seeing the world, or a barrier of appreciation. I share my appreciation with Pusheen with friends of various genders, and I must admit I notice a marked differential response along gendered lines.
‘because, internet’ : Teaching me about comedy
I love things that are funny, I like to see why things are funny. Non-sequiturs such as in the ‘pictureisunrelated’ bamboozle people who have no preconception of what to expect, perhaps in the parlance of this age, we have a reaction of surprise to absurdity which encapsulates Kant’s view of, although in more contemporary terms, it can be summed up by the term: lolwat.
I like the way that Pusheen portrays an antrhopomorphic persona while also being obviously a cat. Pusheen portrays a child like mentality and one focussed on base needs like the desire to sleep and eat, so much so that it is to a fault. Perhaps it is that character flaw of Pusheen that we see in ourselves, or that we find amusing about human nature. Pusheen displays akrasia on a regular basis, in her most recent post, “Santa Claws”, Pusheen parodies the Christmas cultural figure but reverses our expectations by using the big sack to steal cookies instead of deliver gifts to (presumably) children. At this story we laugh, because of the supplanted expectation we have of Santa.
Perhaps there is no justification or reason to the things that appeal to us, perhaps I simply like Pusheen, because Pusheen.