On Friday, September 27, The Atlantic published an article called “The Cat With a Campus Wrapped Around Its Paw.” Amazingly, it was an eight hundred word piece in a national newspaper that someone got paid to write…about Moxie, the cat. I would like to take a moment on this blog, just slightly less disseminated than The Atlantic, to provide an alternative perspective: it’s a fucking cat.
The Atlantic article was written by a journalist named Alia Wong. So far as I can tell, Wong has no real connection to Kenyon: she seems to just, like, write about higher education. She describes how she first heard of Moxie when she “mentioned her fascination with animals on campus” at a dinner “with higher-education leaders” that President Sean Decatur was attending. “[H]is face lit up immediately. The cat, he suggested, is the perfect complement to Kenyon’s ESA program.”
First off, it’s deeply dystopian that the president of a college can literally admit that a campus former-stray is doing the heavy lifting on our ESA program, one of the only actual mental health programs at Kenyon, and have that be framed as a feel-good cute cat story. And second: what makes Moxie special? The article even takes the time to mention how we have multiple campus cats. I’ll admit that I never understood the Moxie hype, but I refuse to “let people enjoy things” or whatever because Moxie and Moxie Culture is deeply, deeply annoying.
“Moxie regularly jumps up onto the backpacks of passing humans, traversing campus on his two-legged chariors,” Wong writes. Moxie has never jumped up onto my back, to which I can say: thank fucking christ. But still, it sounds to me that Moxie sounds like he needs to potentially mind his own business and maybe quit expecting to be catered to? You know, pull himself up by the bootstraps and do something for himself for a change?
Moxie is also a killer. Moxie has killed squirrels and who knows what else? Humans? The Thrill can neither confirm nor deny these rumors. Absolutely disgusting.
The next time you want to carry a cat on your back, or buy Moxie merch, or get paid some sum of money to write about Moxie for a national publication instead of the real news, take a second and think about the kind of creature you’re supporting, and realize that Moxie is annoying and it’s time for us to get obsessed about something different. And no, it can’t be “cranes” again.