Following the results of yesterday’s general election, many in the United Kingdom—and across the world—are in deep need of something to help cheer them up. While nothing short of widespread, meaningful changes to the worldviews and political systems that have brought us all to this moment are likely to really turn those frowns upside down, the BBC (perhaps in penance for the role it played in the Conservative victory) is doing its level best with an ongoing “livestream” of an adorable cat sitting on a roomba.
Entitled “Christmas cat hoovering,” the video being streamed is actually just an endless loop of a long-haired kitty sitting on a vacuum as it cleans the space in front of a tree and a bunch of presents. On one sweep, the cat’s back is turned to the camera. On the next, it’s facing the front. Occasionally, it gives out a little meow but still continues its ride. There is nothing else to it, and it’s been played on repeat for a little over 12 hours now.
There’s a meditative quality to the “livestream,” which contains no background music or any other form of distraction that would take away from the simple pleasure of watching a quiet, well-lit room being cleaned for the holidays by a contented cat on its Roomba. Watch it for long enough and it’s almost possible to imagine that all is right with the world—that our species’ ability to both create robot vacuums and live in harmony with wonderful furry animals means we’re doing okay in spite of everything else.
Perhaps this is the best we can expect of the world’s foremost news outlets going forward. Unable to reliably engage audiences with regular, thorough reporting on the hypocrisies, excesses, and short-sighted policy-making of those who somehow continue to control the world, they can at least offer us days-long streams of Christmas cats.
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