"I'm here live. I'm not a cat."
One wholesome timeline cleanse, comin' right up! On Tuesday, Texas attorney Rod Ponton was thrust into the spotlight after he accidentally joined a virtual court hearing with a Zoom cat filter applied to his face. In a video shared by presiding judge Roy Ferguson, Ponton appears as an adorable white kitten with pleading, almost tearful eyes a là Puss in Boots from the Shrek movie franchise. Another attorney on the call, Gibbs Bauer, threw on his glasses to get a better look as a flustered Ponton struggled to reverse the tech mishap, explaining, "I've got my assistant here and she's trying to remove it, but uh . . . I'm prepared to go forward with it. I'm here live. I'm not a cat." Hah, talk about a good sport!
Judge Ferguson shared the entertaining, highly relatable footage on YouTube, and in just one day, it amassed more than three million views. On Twitter, he made light of the situation, writing, "IMPORTANT ZOOM TIP: If a child used your computer, before you join a virtual hearing check the Zoom Video Options to be sure filters are off. This kitten just made a formal announcement on a case in the 394th [District Court of Texas]." He added, "These fun moments are a by-product of the legal profession's dedication to ensuring that the justice system continues to function in these tough times. Everyone involved handled it with dignity, and the filtered lawyer showed incredible grace. True professionalism all around!"
Meanwhile, Ponton echoed similar sentiments in an interview with The Washington Post, saying, "At first I was worried about it, but then I realised as it was going viral if the country could take a moment to laugh at my cat moment at my expense, I'll take it. We've had a stressful year." If you're looking to purposely pull this move in the name of pranking your coworkers, check out this helpful guide for using Snapchat lenses during Zoom calls to learn how.