A Bay Area cat that goes by the less-than-confidence-inspiring name of Mr. Nuts has some disappointing news for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney -- he's going to lose the election.
Mr. Nuts, a tuxedo cat who shares a home in Fremont with Michael Ostrofsky and his family, is known for his ability to predict outcomes in perhaps the most ignoblest of methods.
Forget scientific polls and margins of errors, Mr. Nuts makes his predictions in the litter box. If he picks yours, your fate is sealed, and not in a good way.
"Normally," Ostrofsky says, "you'd think he'd be picking the winner. But when it comes to Mr. Nuts, any time you're dealing with him and his litter box, you lose."
Ostrofsky, founder of Five Pet Place -- a luxury cat furniture store in the Mission San Jose area -- set up two litter boxes. Romney's was placed on the right, keeping with his political leanings. President Barack Obama's was on the left.
"The right-left thing was as scientific as we got," Ostrofsky says.
Then, he waited. Eventually, nature called and Romney paid the ultimate price.
Mr. Nuts, whose age is estimated as 10 year old, has a short but impressive history of picking losers. Ostrofsky says the cat foresaw the defeat of the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XIV and the loss of the New England Patriots the following year in Super Bowl XLVI.
Although some have accused Mr. Nuts of having a litter box bias -- one of Ostrofsky's relatives thought the test might be rigged against Obama while another questioned Mr. Nuts' liberal California pedigree -- Ostrofsky says Mr. Nuts will not be persuaded to favor either. He calls them as he sees them.
Despite living in a house full of Steelers fans, Ostrofsky says, he put the litter box stamp of disapproval on Pittsburgh.
"He doesn't care what we want. He doesn't care what the polls say. He doesn't care what the odds makers think," Ostrofsky says. "He just does his thing and is right,"
In the short term, Mr. Nuts may suffer for his convictions. Ostrofsky says his parents are ticked at Mr. Nuts because they are Romney supporters.
But a cat has to say what he thinks, so to speak, and let the litter fall where it may, usually in the floor right outside the box.