Our World Cup contest winner (and boot lagniappe)

Reader Jack Dostal won our World Cup contest even though he didn’t get the winner (he got the closest, though). Jack dropped by the lab today on his way from North Carolina to Iowa, and I gave him his prize, an autographed copy of WEIT with a soccer-playing cat drawn in it, wearing Belgium’s team colors. (Jack guessed Belgium beating Croatia in the final, which was the closest anyone got). Here’s Jack and the cat I drew (note that he’s wearing cowboy boots).

I never claimed to be an artist! (The team colors, red with yellow diamonds and a Belgian shield in the middle, are accurate.)

Fortuitously, Jack also collects cowboy boots, and his collection is much larger than mine (I have about 125 pairs). He brought some by to show me, and this custom pair, by the famous bootmaker Dave Little in San Antonio, caught my eye, for it was in my size. Jack sold it to me for a song, and now I have a pair of Dave Little navy blue ostrich boots. Many thanks to him.


  1. Blue
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    Om’gaaaawdess: THOSE are freakin’ g o r g e o u s !

    I want ! I want !


  2. Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    Why is the cat kicking the soccer ball with its claws out? No cat would do that.

  3. Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    Cool boots.

  4. Merilee
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    Maybe you could bid on Paul Manafort’s $15,000(?) ostrich-skin jacket to match. I think that Paul could use the cash😬

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

      I can’t imagine Manafort looking cool in a leather jacket – he has the short hair with left** side-parting beloved of male suit wearing types, [who usually have a gut to hide in tailoring] & those who have kept the same hairstyle as their mums imposed in toddler-hood.

      Over here there was a trend for mousey office guys to wear bush hats & full length duster coats as if an Aussie horseback herdsman. Very amusing while shopping at M&S or having a pint at the local – excellent way to be challenged & beaten up.

      Manafort & that type – no inner reflection & no ability to see their absurd selves as others see them.

      ** I noticed on court drawings & photos taken near court that his parting has moved to the right now he has no personal barber – there’s a story there somewhere! Or possibly some images I’ve seen are reversed. Could be a false lead.

      • Merilee
        Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

        Funny how you blokes across the Pond call them “partings” whereas we on ‘tother side call them “parts”. Vive la différence! Same with turns and turnings…

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

          I quick check suggests we share the same words – THE BEST WORDS compared to Trumpistan!

          A few differences:
          stagette party vs hen party/hen do
          runners vs trainers [or plimsolls if over 70 years old]
          Eh vs we have nothing – we should adopt

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

          Also we should adopt “homo milk” – hilarious

      • Merilee
        Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

        Trevor Noah did a funny shtick of himself wearing an ostrich jacket with the feathers still on.

      • Jenny Haniver
        Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

        I think the last word (dernier cri in more ways than one) on Paul Manifort’s sartorial and tonsorial choices goes to the monumental André Leon Talley, former editor-at-large at Vogue (and he was an “editor-at-large” in more ways than one)

        • Jenny Haniver
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

          Sorry, did not think it would embed.

        • Merilee
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

          Wonderful, Jenny!

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

          Great clip – thanks. André Leon Talley’s disdain just bubbles out with every syllable. Manafort’s choices of fabrics & fabric combo’s are laughably poor “clown plaid” lol

          P.S I looked up Talley on google images – never heard of him – & he’s somehow able to peacock without looking ridiculous.

          • Merilee
            Posted August 13, 2018 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

            Kinda like those black doo-wop bands in the 70s who could carry off the outrageous outfits much better than the white Bee Gees et al. Mick Jagger might be an exception.

            • Michael Fisher
              Posted August 13, 2018 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

              Good point – and Robert Plant. Lots of failures though such as all of the males in glam rock barring Bowie, Bolan, Idol & Elton. Must be something to do with the water here or pervy schooling?

          • Jenny Haniver
            Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

            Though I’d heard of him for years, I didn’t know much about him until recently. A documentary about Talley was recently released https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/23/movies/the-gospel-according-to-andre-review-documentary.html. After watching him so gleefully destroy Manafort, it’s a must-see for me. One thing I liked about his commentary was that he was able to, shall I say, really rag on his high fashion crimes and misdemeanors, he effortlessly used that to comment on the corruption and sleaze that Manafort has been involved in and the broader political corruption and sleaze of the moment.

            And now we have Amorosa! Lordy, Lord.

        • Posted August 13, 2018 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

          His last comment kills!: “This IS the Bonfire of the Vanities”.

          • Jenny Haniver
            Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:21 pm | Permalink


    • Blue
      Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

      Oooo, you are hot, Ms Merilee: GOOD ‘ne !
      … … in re your P’l M’rt – snark !

      I ‘ld be a – duckin’, too !


  5. Merilee
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:07 pm | Permalink


  6. dabertini
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    I am sooooo jealous!

  7. BJ
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations, Jack! I’m very jealous.

    Jerry, could you do a tournament for the US Open (tennis)? Plleeeeeaaase? I really want a drawing of Roger Federer as a cat in a signed copy of your book.

  8. Jenny Haniver
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    You two guys will soon put Imelda Marcos’s shoe collection to shame.

    • Barbara Radcliff
      Posted August 13, 2018 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

      Where do you store your 126 (!) pairs of boots? I’d love to have a pair of such boots but the shape of my feet and the shape of the boot are definitely not congruent! My feet are so wide they are almost square..

      • Jenny Haniver
        Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

        How about horse shoes? Mea culpa. I shouldn’t have written that, no offense to you or your feet, but I just couldn’t resist.

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

          It behoves thee to not foot shame 🙂

  9. Posted August 13, 2018 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Love the soccer cat, Jerry! Congrats, Jack!

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted August 13, 2018 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

      Well said. It is a lovely, colourful kitty.

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

      I had no idea until now that Professor Ceiling Cat was an artist as well as a scientist.

  10. Mark R.
    Posted August 13, 2018 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    How many cat drawings do you have out there by now Jerry? It would be cool to see a compilation. I have a kitteh drinking coffee sketch…like Theo. All of us lucky enough to have one of your sketches should scan and submit…a JAC Reader’s Felid Sketch Compilation. Just a thought. 😉 You’re probably too self-conscious for such an endeavor. It would be fun though!

  11. Posted August 13, 2018 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    Belgian was a surprise, they were up for it, but so was France, played well the whole tournament and good on Croatia. Big, but disappointing finish for them.
    Hadn’t keep up with the form teams pre cup so it made good viewing.
    Pretty close calling Jack.. winner! boots and all!

  12. Posted August 14, 2018 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Thanks all for your comments! On the soccer side, I was one of the late submissions to the contest and followed the “must not pick these 5 favorites” rule someone had posted. That worked out pretty well as I filled out a bracket, and I had the fortune of getting to see Croatia’s first group stage game before picking them. France was a semifinal pick of mine (!) – but so was Mexico (oops). Thanks to Jerry for being a gracious host and drawing the soccer cat! It’s much better than my typical drawings. As a physics teacher, my artistic drawings of animals don’t go much beyond stick figures and spherical cows. (Hence my avatar…)

    On the boot side of things, ostrich is reputed to be the most durable soft leather that there is. When conditioned, it will last years/decades without cracking. Resists scuffs, tends to fit lIke a glove. It’s one of my favorites. Well chosen Jerry – I’m glad these Dave Little boots will be able to get some use!

    Support your local bootmaker. If you don’t have one, find one! 😉

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