The Cat

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Announcement about the cat

I haven’t yet decided quite what to do about this page following the loss of Neo.

It may be a cat

I seem to have acquired a cat. At least there’s something black, furry, with four legs, which miaows and wanders around the flat. I’m pretty certain it’s a cat.

I had thought of writing an ongoing Adventures of an Urban Pussy Cat but since the said cat lives indoors all the time he doesn’t really have adventures1. So, I think I’ll just write some observations instead. Even better would be to have him write this stuff himself but unfortunately his speeling is paw and he has problems uploading pages to the site2.

Lack of understanding

Me and the cat
Me and the cat

I don’t really understand him at all. Does anyone understand cats? He spends most of his time eating, sleeping, running around cackling and generally causing mayhem. He seems to have a sense of humour but other people with cats say they don’t have one. So maybe he doesn’t. Whatever it is causes him to sneak up on me, bite my foot and run off giggling. Well, it sounds like giggling to me.

For his part, I don’t think he can work out what I am either so I guess there’s a sort of mutual misunderstanding. He does seem to understand a few words, notably breakfast, dinner and supper. He also understands a phrase or two: sod off I’m busy/asleep (which he chooses to ignore) and would you like some ham? (which he never chooses to ignore). Strange beast altogether.

Musical taste

I have discovered that the cat does have some musical taste. At the moment he seems particularly fond of ‘Ant Man Bee’ from Captain Beefheart’s ‘Trout Mask Replica’ LP. At least I think he’s fond of it. When I play it he dashes back and forth between the speakers. Perhaps he hates it. I can’t really work it out.

World view

The cat’s two balconys
Picture to illustrate the cat\'s two balconys

I’m beginning to suspect the cat has a somewhat strange view of the world.

My flat has a balcony and in the warmer months of the year I leave a small window open onto it so that the cat can get in and out. There’s also a door to the balcony which is there so that I can get out without having to climb through the window like the cat.

I’ve noticed that if the cat is outside and I open the balcony door he will often come back in through the window so that he can then go back out through the door. It may be that the cat thinks I have two balconys and he prefers the one he can get to through the door3.

I’ve tried explaining to him that there’s really only one balcony but all he does is give me a puzzled look and ask for more food.

The Thing on the ceiling

The cat seems to have become convinced that there’s a Thing on the ceiling. He makes a strange hrrruuhhh noise, dashes across the room to where the Thing is and then sits there and stares at it.

Sometimes the Thing on the ceiling moves and the cat follows it. He’s almost got me seeing it now.

This has had me baffled for a while but I now think I’ve worked it out. The Thing really is there. At least in a manner of speaking. The cat gets particularly agitated about the Thing if I do something like open a CD case or handle anything slightly shiny like a plate with a glaze. What he can see is light reflected onto the ceiling from one of the room lights. This, of course, moves and it drives him mental.

Now the question is how do I stop this as the behaviour is driving me mental. Aside from painting all my CDs and plates a dull colour I can’t think of anything. I’ll just have to hope he gets used to it and finds something else to keep himself busy.


1 Except when he was very young and he gnawed through the phone’s 12 volt power cable, let out a agonised yelp and decided on the spot never to have adventures again.

2 The cat’s inability to upload pages to the site seems, to me, to be largely due to his lack of opposable thumbs making it difficult for him to grasp the mouse.

3 It seems that other cats have similar behaviours. A friend has a cat who always leaves the house through the back door. However, when he wants to come back in he goes to the front door and knocks. My friend then has to open the front door to him, whereupon the cat heads round to the back door where my friend lets him in.

Last changed: 20 November 2005

Text  © Peter Gaunt, 2001–2005
Cat photo  © Peter Gaunt & Sok, 2001
Balcony photo  © Peter Gaunt, 2003
Cat graphic from www.cats-and-kittens.com

Some notes

Cat thoughts on what I am

If a TV programme I saw recently can be believed the cat actually thinks I’m a cat. Bizarre!

Oops! She’s a He

When I took the cat to the vet I thought he was a she only he turned out to be a he. Oh dear.

This has led to people suggesting I have a transvestite cat. That’s not true. It’s me who had the problem. He always knew what he was (I think). It’s not as if I’d been dressing him in little pink puffy sleeved dresses and putting ribbons in his hair.

It has occurred to me that I am making assumptions about the cat’s sexuality here. He may be gay for all I know or he may be a cross-dresser who likes little pink dresses and ribbons. He may even be gay and a cross-dresser.

Life is confusing both for the cat and for me.

The Name of the Cat

For most of his life the cat has been known sort of officially as Neo. Not that he recognises it though and I do call him other things too sometimes usually Puss or Bastard (in a nice tone of voice) but quite frequently I call him Chucklebunny (don’t ask, it just seemed right at the time).

My friend Sok, with who he lived for a few weeks after he left his mother, has suggested we call him Abdul Rasheed after one of her grandfathers. As a compromise he’s now sort of officially known as Neo Abdul Rasheed Chucklebunny Bastard. Some name but since he still doesn’t recognise it it doesn’t really matter two hoots.

Email the cat

You can send the cat an email if you like. I do try to get him to read them. Sometimes he even replies to them though it depends on how he’s feeling.