Critter Profile: Coffeepot
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Critter Profile: Coffeepot

Overview!

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Name: Coffeepot

Species: Cafetiere

Primary Caretaker: Martin Anchorage

Diet: Coffee, obviously!

Housed: Wilson's Wildlife Center, Main building, Kitchen

Creature Features!

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As you might've guessed, Coffeepot isn't actually an animal! The whole "critter" thing is honestly a bit misleading, but we keep it for thematic reasons — his whole deal is that, whenever someone interacts with him, they'll think they're interacting with a dog. The type of dog varies from person to person, but it's always the same dog for the same person; he's like your own personal imaginary pet!

Regarding the effect, we're… not really sure how it works. The folks at the Foundation told us it might be 'memetic', which means it affects the information your brain gets from looking at it, and they've got it officially classified as a 'cognitohazard'. It's a terrifying way to refer to anything with effects that happen when you sense it, but Tim's asked that we use their terminology with stuff like this. I prefer "cognitotrigger" myself, but I've gotta assume that they know what they're doing1.

Nothing Coffeepot does affects anything real in any way, so whatever the effect is seems to be entirely localised to the brain of the person looking at them. It doesn't carry through photographs, video, or anything other than direct, face-to-face confrontation with this lovable not-dog. And he is lovable: even people who don't really like dogs say that he's really friendly and generally respectful of boundaries and stuff. "Perfect dog" might be an overstatement — I have my own pets who I love dearly! — but it seems like Coffeepot is something in that vague area.

History!

Not much history here! We picked him up on the street, and fairly quickly noticed there was something odd going on. I (Martin) took some photos and deduced the effect, and we contacted the Foundation pretty damn sharpish. It's all unknown territory for us, really!

They did some tests, logged the effect, and said we could keep him if we wanted. It's uncharacteristically nice of them, but you didn't hear that from me. He keeps up morale and there's a $30 saving on kitchenware, so it's really a net gain for all involved.

Special Needs and Accommodations!

Again: none, really! Coffeepot seems to perk up when he's actually used to make coffee, so one of us usually tries to do that about once a day2, but he doesn't need any food or anything. He doesn't even seem to be aware of the periods of time where nobody's perceiving him, so we could happily put him in a crate somewhere and it'd be absolutely fine from a welfare standpoint; the only reason we don't is that he's a lot of fun to have around!

Oh, and he's dishwasher safe, but please treat him with care. Someone chipped him a few weeks after we got him, and it was a disaster — one of our vets had to use epoxy to fix the damage while only looking at him through her phone. Everyone else saw her gluing a broken leg back together! He's good as new now, and just as friendly and sprightly as ever, but do be careful handling him. Needless to say, hand-washing is preferred.

Notes about Coffeepot!

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