Saturday, March 08, 2008

Creature of the mist?

Walhydra is continuously amused by the phenomenon of cat names.

After decades of cat-personhood, she has come to suspect that one can no more speak the true name of any cat than one can say YHWH out loud. It just isn't done.

Walhydra generally thinks that Gary Larson had it right with his take on dogs versus cats:

Gary Larsen, What we say to dogs...Gary Larsen, What we say to cats...

However, back in the early 1990s, a marvelous gray tabby adopted Walhydra and hubby Jim. Because he reminded them so much of a famous B. Kliban cartoon, they named him Meatloaf.

B. Kliban, How to tell a cat from a meatloafMeatloaf moved in with them (minus certain reproductive bits which wouldn't go well with being a second-storey apartment cat).
Soon afterwards, he said, "Hey! I can't be Meatloaf. You guys are vegetarians."

Hence, the Wise One became Miso the Cat.

Over the nearly seventeen years that they knew Miso, Walhydra found the name permutating as both she and Jim played teasingly with it: Meesy, Misopoulus, Mushroom, Mustafa, Catmobile, Little Guy, Skinny Butt, Hassenpfeffer....

It obviously didn't matter much to him. He was a beneficent sweety who forgave all and still came to their voice...or to the sound of the Tupperware cheddar cheese box from the refrigerator being opened.

But now it's a different family, with two gray brothers who will have their first birthday the day after Saint Padrick's Day.

The elder (and smaller) of the two is a comical shorthair who looks very much the Russian Blue. Sonic was the fastest kitten, and he continues to be the light-hearted, curious one, who likes racing and rough-housing... and whose favorite game seems to be hiding under anything at all.


Toss your shirt on him, and he stays there. Give him a chance, and he crawls under the covers and burrows to the foot of the bed.


Shadow is a much larger, longhaired gray. He affects the reserved, sensitive stance of a mystic. He will play hard-to-get when Walhydra tries to pet him—and then suddenly plop onto his back for a belly rub.

Walhydra had heard from someone that there were longhaired Russian Blues, so she Googled it. She was intrigued to find sites about the Nebelung cat.

She showed Jim the picture and said, "Nebelung is German for 'Creature of the mist'."

"Yep," said Jim. "That's Shadow alright."


To finish off this gallery entry, here are a few rounds of the Wide World of Cat Wrestling.

Brothers 1

Brothers 2Brothers 3

Bless├Ęd Be.


Patricia said...

My neice once had a cat that looked like the Nebelung cats, although she wasn't. Fluff's mama was a short-haired tortie, although there must have been either a Russian Blue or a Nebelung somewhere in the neighborhood where she was born. She was the only kitten I'd ever seen that looked like that until I saw your photo of Shadow. How cool!

Grumpy Granny said...

Hey, Michael, how are you? Hope over to Grumpy Granny sometime and leave a note!

Take care,
GG (aka Igraine)