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April 16, 2020


I am glad that someone is finding joy and contentment in this moment!

Amusingly, my ten year old just finished drawing a comic book in which our cat is the main character. He envisions our cat thinking, "Why aren't they ever leaving the house anymore?" and going slowly bananas because he's accustomed to some solitude and now we just. won't. leave. :)

This post made me glad

I love this post and this cat...petite Manon!

Ah, Manon builds her fan club! We have a family saying, "Why is my tail wet?" Our cat would leap to the kitchen counter, lap some water from her bowl, then turn and often dip her tail in. Then. she'd look at her wet tail, completely baffled.

J'aime beaucoup la chute de ton texte! :)

They will take over the world, no doubt about it. And Manon might even be their President.

Given that Manon the cat is part of a well-read household, it seems inevitable that she will become aware - if this has not already happened - of the novel whence her name was derived. I held off reading Manon Lescaut for years mainly because I didn't think an author who was also a Benedictine priest would have much to say to me. Of course I was hopelessly wrong. The novel was scandalous enough to be converted into not one but two operas (by Massenet and Puccini) and it was short enough to be gobbled up over a weekend. A good read in fact.

But how might a cat respond to a fictional character? Well fictional Manon is described as "all charm and sensuality" and those two qualities are evident in most of the cats I've known. Especially "charm", which cats turn off and on as if it came through a spigot. ML also treats her lover badly and most cats secretly disdain their owners. But the novel, somewhat elliptically, takes in redemption and here we have a problem. I risk the anger of felinophiles the world over, but I believe cats to be irredeemable. From birth to death their characters never change from that initial mix of selfishness and mental vacuity. When they're not practising either they're asleep.

We've owned cats but always due to the impulse of my wife. The most recent, and easily the most long-lived, was called George. There's either an enormous potential in that name or none at all. I was invited to christen an earlier kitten on the basis of its smallness; I offered Pico (math., denoting a factor 10 to the minus 12) and this was accepted. Another cat, this one owned by my mother, was called Victor because he arrived out of nowhere (this is often the case with cats) during the celebrations for VE-Day (that's Victory in Europe, WW2).

One cat had an knightly name (it began with Sir, I've forgotten the rest) which had to be written into the lease of the house we were renting in Philadelphia.

Hi Beth, I highly recommend putting up some kind of barrier to your deck that you can step over but Manon will not leap over since she can't see a landing spot.

You don't want Manon leaping off your terrace. Happened to a friend of ours in Portland and she found her cat three stories down.

Or put up a barrier around the terrace so she can be out with you but be careful. It is heartbreaking to lose one on the road which is why I have a fence!

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.