Relax with cats?

Relax with Cats
Recently I was in the sort of shop you might go to if you're a woman who has a remarkable number of cats in your house. 

I love New Age shops, they're mental but great at the same time. I try not to spend money in them too much and strangely managed to stop short of a purchase when I encountered "Relax With Cats". 

From the sounds of things they should pipe this in on the hospital radio stations of the UK because it fixes BROKEN BONES and is recommended by SCIENTISTS amongst other things. 

Yes, that's right, it fixes broken bones, unbelievable eh?

My cats loved it
Various incredible quotes on the back made me want to buy it: "Most amazing relaxation CD I have ever heard", "Zonked me out completely", "My cats loved it" and "Calmed the kids down".

Furthermore, check out the academic qualifications on Jeff Moron and Jack Stewart[1]: an MA and an MSc between them! They must really know their stuff if they've got a qualification or two.

Look as well, it says "scientifically proven". Scientists know everything, they're ace. This is a done deal...

It's ten quid?
Then the cynicism set in a bit. One of those quotes stuck out as a slight contradiction to the relaxation vibe: "It's as if a cat was sat on my lap". That's not relaxing to me at all, if interpreted literally and on a "scientific level" that's stressful for a number of reasons.

Firstly, cats scratch you and stick their claws in for no reason. I can never relax with one on my lap.

Secondly, I think it'd freak me out to imagine one was actually scientifically there, only to discover I'd been conned by a CD into thinking that. In other words, to take these claims seriously we're describing borderline mental illness here. 

Remember, this stuff is "scientifically proven".

Scientifically proven magickal qualities
Then there's the price as well: ten quid. I'm a jobbing commercial radio cover presenter and part time writer these days. I don't have ten quid to buy things like this, even if it is pink.

Still, "This Amazing CD will enable you to: 

#Fully Relax 
#Boost your immune system
#Improve your health"

That's some pretty incredible claims there. They are backed by people with qualifications and it is "scientifically proven". Furthermore the research "confirms that cats purring: #Lowers stress levels & blood pressure #Creates frequencies that help muscle tissue and bones repair". 

I really honestly wanted this CD.

What put me off was the matter of fact tone implied by the use of words which appeal to scientific authority. This makes it harder to purchase. In that sense I can't make the purchase, the advertising put me off: I just don't buy it.

Nick Margerrison

[1] Both very easy to find online. Almost posted their pictures but I'm starting to get a strange sense of responsibility as this blog begins to get readers and didn't want them unnecessarily hassled. They're scientists after all, they don't know any better.


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