Monday 29 July 2013

Guest Reader's Cat Of The Week: Captain Wednesday Mitchell

Cpt. Wednesday Mitchell (Ret.)

The Captain, Weds, Jingle Bells, Oldcat, Please Stop Yowling At The Wall, No, You’ve Already Been Fed, Please Don’t Be Sick On That Rug. 

Theme Tune?
A Well Respected Man by The Kinks


Hilary  and Mads.

Brief biography?
I was born in the village of Sturton le Steeple, Nottinghamshire in May 1995 and attended Sturton le Steeple C of E Primary School on several occasions, most notably through a large, open window in the middle of a rehearsal for the annual Senior Citizens’ Show. I was also an enthusiastic member of the school football team, though for some reason my teammates used to swear and shout at me when I joined them on pitch. I then signed up to the Cat Army and was posted to Lancaster, where I achieved the rank of Captain and was awarded the Slightly Chewed Small Purple Heart for my squirrel-murdering skills. Army work kept me very busy so I had to give up my other hobbies- except blood sports – until being adopted by Mads and Hilary in Scotland at the ripe old age of 16. I currently run a small garage in Penicuik on a semi-retired basis.  

Favourite Habits?
As I’m not as young as I was, my hobbies are largely confined to yowling as loudly as felinely possible at 3am every night while staring blankly at a wall. I also very much enjoy sitting calmly outside the house and gazing into the garden while making a sound like an extremely distressed haunted baby, which has led to several complaints from neighbours. As you can see from the photo above, I also very much enjoy lying in a tiny triangle of sunshine while staring accusingly at passers-by.  

What constitutes a perfect evening for you?
After a crazy, back-twitching half hour of skittering insanity where I charge wildly around the house to build up an appetite, I’ll have a delicious meal of expensive kidney and thyroid medication mixed with some equally expensive renal food from the vet. I’ll then instantly forget that I’ve already been fed and repeatedly and loudly demand more food, then overeat and do a big sick on a rug (avoiding easy to clean surfaces like wood, tile or lino flooring- where’s the fun in that?). 

Favourite food?
Though I do enjoy a nice pouch of Whiskas Senior or twelve, I have to say I’m a sucker for those ‘Dreamies’ things, though it’s not really the right name for a bite sized chunk of Bovril flavoured cereal. I think ‘Meaty Grit Lumps’ is far more appealing, but for some reason they didn’t reply to my letter suggesting that they change it.  

Defining moment of your life?
It was quite hurtful, really. My family were holding a very pleasant barbeque in the garden. As I’m a well-bred and distinguished gent, I knew that it was my responsibility as a guest to bring a gift for my hosts, but for some reason they rejected the dead squirrel I deposited on the grill. Not only that, it became the source of barbed jokes about my sense of etiquette for years to come. They call it ‘Nutty The Party Squirrel’ and tease me about it constantly. They really have no class at all.  

Any enemies?
Every single other cat who ever lived. Particularly the big, fat, gormless one I was forced to live with for a while in Lancaster called Rajah. The fact that I outlived him is a constant source of joy. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to write an irate letter to the Daily Mail about immigrants. 

If you could do one thing to make the world a better place for felines what would it be?
Give cats the vote! I think it's disgraceful that cats are excluded from political debate in this country. I recently ran for local office (I was the UKIP candidate) but lost by a small margin as my supporters weren't legally allowed to vote for me. What's worse: I was disqualified from future elections due to being too easily distracted. This kind of open prejudice shouldn't be toler....hang on, is that a vole?  

If you could meet a celebrity who would it be and why?
Probably that saucy Mila Kunis woman. She looks like the type of lady who'd be interested in a handsome silver fox with solid right-wing views. I could wake her up for early morning location shoots by making my patented 'confused dolphin gargling with marbles'  noise.

Which one of the cats in Under The Paw and Talk To The Tail  would you like to be stuck in a lift with?
It has to be my peer and lookalike  The BearAs we're both the same age, we could while away the time reminiscing about our 1990s childhood: specifically the ultra-satisfying feeling of urinating on discarded Global Hypercolor T-shirts then watching them slowly change from pink to green.  

Friday 5 July 2013

Guest Writer's Cat Of The Week: Ronnie

Officially Chamtippy Athena because I am a well-posh blue Burmese but She decided I was Veronica.  Well miffed, I can tell you.

I mostly get called Ronnie but also Stop-It-You-Little-Sod.

Theme Tune
Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb, because most of the day that’s what I am.  Plus I do like a good guitar solo.

Six.  A bit insulted that the vet recently said I was getting ‘elderly’.  We Burmese can get into our late twenties which makes me a mere kitten.

Judy Astley who writes  fun contemporary novels when she’s not playing Facebook Scrabble.  She likes me sleeping on her while she works because I keep her warm.  

Brief Biography
I’m from a litter of six kittens, from Bournemouth. I live in SW London near the Thames but also travel to Their house in Cornwall quite a lot. It’s good there – plenty of wild life and mice and stuff.  It’s 300 miles but I’m a top traveller and I never poo in my basket. (OK, just that once. We never mention it)

If it moves, chase it. And then eat it. Though not shrews.

Favourite habits
Drinking water from the loo. Licking Her face to wake her up & feed me. Getting into cars. Visiting all the neighbours, the shops, pub, church and playgroup. I like to check out my manor.

Perfect evening  
In London, any nature programme on TV (except ones with lions.  Big things, lions) especially with birds in. Though it’s slightly embarrassing when you do that thing of leaping at the screen.  In Cornwall, a perfect evening is catching something edible plus a spare that I can leave hidden under a cupboard till She realises there’s a smell. Tee hee.

Favourite food
I’m small but I can do a whole squirrel apart from the tail (fun to leave those on the stairs, along with some sicked-up innards). But She gives me dry stuff the vet says is good for my teeth. Bor-ing.

Defining moment of my life
Jumping into a car (I LOVE doing that) and being taken away by a stranger. I ended up lost. Six whole WEEKS I had to live on the mean streets of Hounslow (shudder) without so much as a bed of my own. Eventually someone took me to a vet who found my microchip and She came and collected me.  I was so happy to be home I didn’t scratch the sofa for a whole day.

Any enemies?
The Nasty Brown Cat up the road. He bit me and gave me an abscess, the bastard.  But She’s bought a big Supa-soaker so he doesn’t come round much now.

If you could make the world a better place for felines, what would you do?   
I’d have a law that all gardens should be dug over every week.  We do favour a bit of soft earth when we’re out there digging holes.

If you could meet a celebrity who would it be and why?  
She tells me I’ve to say Keith Richards because She lurves him but I’m going for Top Cat and his crew: they’re well ‘ard.

Which one of the cats in Under The Paw and Talk To The Tail  would you like to meet?
Hmm.. other cats.. I don’t really ‘do’ other cats but I could give The Bear’s ears a reasonably friendly paw-flick, so long as he didn’t tell anyone.  

Judy Astley's new book, In The Summertime, is out this week, via Bantam Press.