Every time I feel sad and worthless, sitting in my apartment and counting all my regrets, I put this song on. To me, the Weakerthans’ “Plea From a Cat Named Virtute,” is the perfect anthem for getting back up and shaking yourself off, even if it is sung from the perspective of an animal that spends most of it’s time lying around aimlessly. Now, I don’t know if it’s especially healthy to relate your own self-worth to another being in your life, but knowing I have another creature’s life in my hands is impetus enough to temporarily shake off the cloud of depressive self-pity that pops up every once in a while.
Personification never moved me until I heard this song. “Why are these rabbits fighting? Why do these pigs and sheep care which legs they walk on?” Those books always felt like the required reading they were. But the realization that my cat could be singing these lyrics to me is enough to shake out the cobwebs of depressive introspection for just a minute. Even if I’m just picking up a piece of string and dangling it around, “Plea” has motivated me to get up more than any other clichéd “keep on livin’” anthem sung from the perspective of a basic ass human.
Virtute’s indictments, “all you ever want to do is drink and watch TV,” are like an antidote for the recently dumped. Things are never going to get better if you wallow in your own emotional filth, and doing so runs the risk of your cat biting you.
If there’s one thing I despise, it’s those whose self-pity becomes so cancerous that it envelops whatever is around them. This song prevents me from giving into that cancer. And if you don’t believe my cat is that great of a cat, just check my Instagram.