Donald Trump Vs. Smudge the Cat.

The end of “Salad Days” and “Vaginas for Trump” panties.

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Courtesy of YouTube

Cats are like having children, only there’s no tuition involved.” Ronald Reagan

There’s a popular cat meme that’s been around for a while now. The cat’s name is Smudge and, like our president, he hates salad. Trump hates anything green, and apparently Smudge does, too.

A photo of him making a sour face over a salad currently has over a million viewers. I’m sure most of these viewers — being American — hate salads. As my brother-in-law in Lincoln, Nebraska once told me, “The only salad we eat is encased in green Jello.”

I wouldn’t normally give this much thought, but the similarities between Smudge and Trump are adding up. From the start, Smudge was an unlikely internet star, an orphan cat, adopted by the Stillabower family from Kanata, near Ottawa.

If cats could vote, they’d be all over Trump. He’s their kind of politician.

Trump was adopted by the Republican far right, a party devoted to selfish, feline behaviour. If cats could vote, they’d be all over Trump. He’s their kind of politician.

In Smudge’s case, his sneering face has been turned into t-shirts and other memorabilia, no doubt similar to Trump’s sneering face which adorns memorabilia, too, including women’s panties saying, “Vaginas for Trump.”

There are no panties featuring “Vaginas for Smudge.”

So how did this whole thing start with Smudge? It seems, like most cats, Smudge made himself at home in the Stillabower household, even taking what he considered his rightful place at the dinner table.

“He gets really upset if he doesn’t have a chair,” owner, Miranda Stillabower explained.

Smudge is quite a learned character in the art of territorial prerogative (as is Trump when it comes to walls).

That’s a cat for you. As Charles Bukowski would say, “You can learn a lot from cats.” Smudge is quite a learned character in the art of territorial prerogative (as is Trump when it comes to walls). They both like usurping, in other words, only Smudge has one advantage over Trump: He usurps without saying a word (Trump, on the other hand, never shuts up).

So how did Smudge arrive on the internet with only cuteness and a bad attitude towards salads? It seems the Stillabowers had guests over for dinner one night, forgetting to give Smudge a chair. Rather than get his little cat shirt in a knot, he simply waited until a guest got up and then took their place.

Trump is known to do same at the United Nations. Foreign leaders swear at him at him all the time—in every language imaginable.

Trump doesn’t speak every language imaginable — including English — so it’s no surprise he doesn’t move or acknowledge the speaker. Same goes for Smudge. Even after gentle coaxing, he refuses to give up his seat at the dinner table.

Cats are known to be rude, something Smudge capitalized on by making a face at the salad. “I don’t know why he was making that face,” Miranda said, “but it’s the best thing he’s ever done.”

A family member took a picture of Smudge’s expression, which went on Tumblr, and the next thing you know, Smudge had thousands of viewers.

“I think the original photo is popular because he looks so dissatisfied with the plate of salad,” Miranda said, “then the pairing looks like an argument.”

Then someone, for reasons no one could quite fathom, paired it with a screen grab of an angry woman from the Real Housewives reality TV series. Thousands turned into millions.

“I think the original photo is popular because he looks so dissatisfied with the plate of salad,” Miranda said, “then the pairing looks like an argument.”

One close inspection, the photo bears a striking resemblance to Trump’s meeting with Angela Merkel. His expression is, let’s say, miffed.

In Smudge’s case, it’s to be expected. He’s a cat. Unless he’s having his belly rubbed, he usually looks miffed. So does Trump. They’re both famous for their miffiness and bellies.

Now, Smudge isn’t crazy about being looked at, or having his picture taken. When people laugh, he gets even more miffed. Cats, in general, hate being the butt of jokes. They’re known to show displeasure in ways unbecoming a household pet. Smudge, for instance, will simply walk out of the room, something Trump has been known to do on numerous occasions, like the last meeting of the United Nations.

After Trump saw camera footage of Prime Minster Justin Trudeau making fun of him, he called Trudeau “two-faced” and left the U.N. conference early.

“I actually like Justin, you know,” Trump said. “I think he’s good, but he shouldn’t have done that. That’s going to cost him a lot of money.”

Trump, as you know, cares a lot about security (again, walls). Not that Americans are worried about Canadians crossing the border and attacking them with aluminium posts.

While not being specific, the threat is, no doubt, related to the yet to be ratified North American Free Trade Agreement. One sticking point involves tariffs on aluminium and steel, which Trump introduced last year on the grounds of “national security” (Canadians got really miffed).

Trump, as you know, cares a lot about security (again, walls). Not that Americans are worried about Canadians crossing the border and attacking them with aluminium posts. It’s a diplomatic “fiddle.”

As Trump admitted, “Tariffs are easy,” meaning he can spell tariffs. In a pinch, so can Smudge.

What draws Trump and Smudge together is a similar playbook. Showing their displeasure reflects the mood of the people. Smudge’s sour expression is a popular motif, drawing in millions with a similar distaste for salads. Trump has extended this to include immigrants, taxes and climate crisis poofters.

Cats, like Smudge, don’t have any opinions on the climate crisis until they find vegetables in their bowls instead of meat. On that day, cats will rise up, killing every coal miner in Pennsylvania.

Self preservation is a big part of the feline mission in life, and Smudge is no exception. He’s already given salads the “thumbs down.” If he has to show similar displeasure for other garden varieties, he’ll do it. Like Trump, he doesn’t mind a dust up in the name of good old American values—even if they’re disappearing by the minute.

Viewership might not be as good as him sneering at salad, but eventually, when most of the eastern seaboard is underwater, Smudge might be a guiding light, a foreseer of catastrophes. The t-shirts could even say, “This is a cat-tastrophy.”

Trump’s been barnstorming across the midwest, telling everybody the economy is great. “We’ve never had it so good,” he said, something farmers take with a grain of salt, since bankruptcies are happening every day.

Smudge’s owners should get smart and lend Smudge’s face to social causes. Viewership might not be as good as him sneering at salad, but eventually, when most of the eastern seaboard is underwater, Smudge might be a guiding light, a foreseer of catastrophes. The t-shirts could even say, “This is a cat-tastrophy.”

Trump won’t like that one bit. He’ll be out there saying, “I like Smudge, I think he’s good. But him calling my administration a ‘cat-tastrophy’ will cost him.”

As I mentioned off the top, Smudge is technically Canadian. I say “technically” because he isn’t the slightest bit interested in political boundaries— or human boundaries, for that matter.

Sitting at the dining room table isn’t cute to him. It’s the respect he feels he deserves. To be honest, his only reason for sneering at the salad was disappointment. He was expecting steak or fish or a Cornish hen. Staring at something that grows from the ground is mystifying. Don’t you people know how to kill? I can have four sparrows on this plate in fifteen minutes.

The point is, both Smudge and Trump know it’s not the salad — it’s the miffiness. People like miffiness. The more miffed we are, the more Republicans like us.

But, like I say, it’s neither here nor there. The point is, both Smudge and Trump know it’s not the salad people are interested in — it’s the miffiness.

People like miffiness. The more miffed we are, the more Republicans like us. Especially senators like Mitch McConnell, who says Trump “will never be impeached.” He likes to do that with a Cheshire grin (Smudge would tell him to knock it off. It’s only for cats).

Republicans are acting very cat-like these days. Their control of the senate pretty much assures Trump won’t be impeached. He won’t win another election, either. Like Smudge, you can only pull off miffiness for so long.

Unfortunately for Trump — and Smudge — the “Salad Days” will soon be over, miffiness replaced by morality. Smudge won’t like that. He’d rather eat salad than be moral. Same with Trump. Eventually, they’ll retire to their respective litter boxes and try to lick themselves clean. But it’ll be over.

If I were Smudge’s owners, I’d start working on “Cat-tastrophy.” There’ll be plenty before Trump leaves office.

We’ll have a lot of “Vaginas for Trump” panties left over, which will either have to be burned or shot out of bazookas at tractor pulls. If I were Smudge’s owners, I’d start working on “Cat-tastrophy.” There’ll be plenty before Trump leaves office. A t-shirt honouring the mass of Republicans running for the Babylonian hills makes sense.

Smudge needs to double down, anyway. For now, he’s an internet star. But like all things internet, one day you’re a star, the next you’re a house pet.

Trump will know that, too.

Robert Cormack is a satirist, novelist and blogger. His first novel “You Can Lead a Horse to Water (But You Can’t Make It Scuba Dive)” is available online and at most major bookstores. Check out Skyhorse Press or Simon and Schuster for more details.

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I did a poor imitation of Don Draper for 40 years before writing my first novel. I'm currently in the final stages of a children's book. Lucky me.

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