The Guardian reports:
When Ashleigh Hicks’s cat Moses went missing, she was concerned because it was unusual, but assumed he would soon return home.
However, it appears Moses is not the only one to have disappeared in odd circumstances. He is vanished cat No 50 this year alone in the city of Timaru, in New Zealand’s South Island.
“A common factor I have noticed in the majority of these stories is that the cats simply disappeared for no particular reason, cats that don’t tend to wander far,” Hicks said. “We all thought this is too much of a coincidence and suspected foul play.”
After Hicks set up a Facebook closed group called #freethefurbabies, she realised just how many of the animals had gone missing in similar circumstances. The group now has more than 100 members.
Members have begun pooling information; including times and dates of the disappearances, photographs of the missing pets and witness accounts.
One member said that last year all three of her cats disappeared in the space of three months
There are many missing cat posters in my neighborhood, which is near the Otari Wilton bush reserve. What if, I have recently wondered, someone working at the reserve – someone with strong environmental convictions – was trapping and killing these cats to stop them from killing native birds? It wouldn’t be difficult. A baited trap, hidden in some remote corner of the bush where no one but the killer and the cats would go. Or simple poison. A perfect crime.
This Guardian story makes me wonder if it is bigger than just one person? What if there was a covert nationwide network of cat killers? It wouldn’t be hard to organise such a thing, but the founder would need to be very well resourced, and obviously insane.
On a slightly unrelated note: I dreamed about Wham! again last night. Someone in the dream pointed out how my attitude towards Wham! had changed over the years. When Fantastic was released in July of 1983 I was nine years old, and I liked all of their songs, especially Bad Boys although they weren’t my favorite band. But by the time they broke up in mid-1986 they were regarded with contempt by everyone in my school, including me, and I genuinely hated them and felt rage when I heard their music. Years went by, and by the late 1990s it became acceptable to like Wham! but only on an ironic level, so I did this. Now I like some of their songs purely as songs, without any social influence.
Or do I? As the unknown person in my dream pointed out, I once thought that I genuinely hated, and then ironically appreciated Wham! But I was just doing what was culturally appropriate. Who knows the true factors governing my current attitude towards them? And what will I think about Wham! in twenty or even forty years time? I might have ideas about them, shaped by powerful but invisible social and historical factors that are literally incomprehensible to me now.