Fluid Cats.

Idle musings on the fluidity of the names given to pet cats. That and gratuitous pussy pics.

Once upon a time; there lived three cats and their names were…

Well, that’s where things get a bit treacle-ish unfortunately. There are three. We own three. Though as any cat owner will tell you, you never own a cat. The cat chooses you as its drone, you then are granted the honour of emptying tins of foul smelling food into a bowl, before subsequently emptying trays of foul smelling crap into a bag. So we, on reflection, are owned by three cats. Douglas Adams was right. Only this is with cats, not mice.

There may be other duties; one of ours likes to be cuddled in the morning. Generally around 3.30 each morning. And let’s us know it’s cuddle time by poking us in the face with a paw. With the claws out. Every fucking night! Yes, yes, I know! But he can open doors. Ok? And gets awfully vocal if we shut him in somewhere else.

Besides. We love him.

There he is, look. In full that’s Oscar Klutzclaws of Kinkavel. Or a bit of him anyway. Arguably the least useful bit.

He has a brother. Frederick. He of the permanently startled expression. I’ll track him down at some point. Finally, there’s Effie. She’s s rescue cat from our days as RSPCA fosterers. Fostering is all well and good, providing the animals move on. She didn’t — black cats are notoriously difficult to rehome you see, so she stayed. Her idea I think. I don’t recall her asking me — or my partner, Kitty. (even here, we seem to have continued the theme of discarding a real name in favour of something else. Her given name is actually Claire).

The thing with all three is that they each have a veritable lexicon of names. I don’t know whether this particular practice is exclusive to our household — I suspect not; but they have these, well, pet names.

They’re pets.

Oscar, he of the Klutzclaws, was originally named in honour of Ozzie Osbourne. This morphed into Oscar, but Oz for short. He is also known as That Fuckwit Cat; more as an explanation or apology than appellation. Subsequently; Osboz, Boz, Bizbert, Bozbert. Bert. Bertram, Bosley, Boston, Boozebert. Boslington, Burlington, Bumface. Bertie McBert-Bert. Oh yes! And he responds with all due reverence and dignity to none of them.

Which is very frustrating, but not really that surprising.

He is, fundamentally, a trial. I can’t decide whether he really is village idiot material, or the feline version of Perry the Platypus. Deep down I suspect the latter, because the village idiot disguise really is just too convincing. I mean. Cats generally hate water. Bosley sits in the bath when he is thirsty. Well?

Fred. Frederick, Fredness, Freddie Fredson… after Freddie Mercury. Not so much you can do on the name front there, really. Besides, he isn’t generally one for conversation, so we have no need to label him at all, much of the time. Fred majors in despair. That and non-verbal communication. Wide eyed, constantly perplexed; he is the largest of the three, yet eats last. Freddie is our silent, inscrutable, ninja cat. Bozbert’s smarter brother. Probably. We suspect that their cognitive functions are shared, with Boz getting access on demand; possibly every third Thursday between breakfast and ten past.

Fred is the one who doesn’t attack your feet at stupid O clock in the morning. His expression is generally akin to Really? Oh my! Lord Frederick.


Like a jackinthebox, but far less predictable. Boxes are his thang. Got to be in one — any box, any size. With Fred, it’s carrier bags. He doesn’t get in them, oh no. He licks them. Loudly. Just one other thing we have to tolerate in the wee, small hours. There’s generally something in or near our bedroom for him to slurp at. Bleurgh!

That pic was a study in opportunism. It has to be with these feline ninjas!

As already mentioned, number three is Effie. Effles, Effleina, Effort. Effing Cat, Effoff, Effington Snotbeast. Then we get a little more lateral. Off-compass you might say. Loo Laa. Effie Loo. And of course, Effie Loo Laa or Effington Loo Laa for short. That wasn’t my doing you know.

She is nurse, head of communications and weekday alarm clock. She is also shiny, like Whitby Jet; sleek and incredibly affectionate. The nursing skills relate to her spending hours — literally — with Kitty when she was having chemo last year. Curled up around the area being bombarded with pills and potions; nursing and chatting away. She is Kitty’s Familiar. (Yes; Kitty is a witch).

Don’t be fooled by the laid back appearance. This is a very intense, orgsnised and on point to a fault feline. She knows precisely when it’s breakfast time. And will tell you so.

She offers a variety of services to assist with your morning chores. Including, but not restricted to; washing and grooming. Us and her. Well, her first then Kitty. I’m an afterthought, which pleases me. Eyeballs, nose, cheeks. All licked clean so that breakfast isn’t delayed.

It’s the job of junior teen to sort the furries breakfast. He never does, of course. Ternagers are a whole new essay! Probably at least two. So Effie Effort pops back upstairs to tell us that she’s still hungry, once the grunts have gone to school. And on the rare occasions when junior does remember to open a tin, or sprinkle crunchies; she pops back upstairs to tell us that she’s still hungry, once the grunts have gone to school.

Very serious face. Sir Frederick. Captured while taking a well earned breather from his hectic schedule.

So that’s it really. We are many in number, some with fur and some not. It’s fair to say that, as with Claire; all the humanoids have spare names too. It’s just that the cats are in charge. They seem to need many labels.

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