"Best Easter Dinner ever, says Goomp, and Baby doesn't disagree, but could I have some more shrimp, please?" we captioned this image of the late, great Cakes, featured in our Easter 2008 post "He is risen."
And so they did give us lifetimes of pleasure with their breathtaking physical beauty, their personal integrity and earnestness, their embodiment of our favorite words of Henry David Thoreau:
Tiny thinks about things we don't as she soaks up the sun's early rays.
A vivid dream about the Babe last night. He was in our loving arms prancing and petting and purring. Tuck was there, too, and we spoke to him, saying we knew it couldn't
be, but even so we gave ourselves in to the flood of happiness.
What a photo of Tiny. Words escape me, but you are right, it is a shade of Rembrandt. I love the photos on this blog. They remind me of my dear departed cats, and the ones yet to come.
When our sis asked this afternoon whether we were feeling nostalgic about undecorating the tree or glad to get it all over with, we were able to say without a second thought that the loss of our precious boy kitty had put it all into perspective. No regrets.
Talking up the need for bigger apartments at the introduction of his new housing strategy, he says Londoners have grown too fat to live like Hobbits. He indulges his passion for cycling by seeking to make London friendlier to bikes — for aesthetic green reasons, he says, to get people out of cars and fat burned off their bodies. Recently, he infuriated earnest greens by describing climate change as "a religion" in his weekly column. "Not all religions are bad!" he says. "Climate change might be the faith that supervenes and brings the human race together. Fear of the Sun God …" he adds, before trailing off in a chuckle.
The Tory mayor, famed for scorning the global warming agenda in the past, sought to throw off his image as the man who used to write caustic articles about "the religion of climate change" by saying that his mind had been changed by the incontrovertible science. "If the climate can change, I don't see why my mind can't," he said.
"Incontrovertible science"? We took a few deep breaths and then reminded ourselves of Spectator columnist Rod Liddle's words:
We reserve judgment until we can see a video of his presentation. We're hoping his face will reveal a man lying to a cat. Meanwhile, we totally agree with Mayor Johnson's specific "green" prescriptions:
And even if the entire scientific establishment [Huh? You haven't been keeping up, sir] is wrong about anthropogenic climate change — and I don't think [Yes. You don't think!] they are — then I believe to reduce pollution also makes aesthetic and economic sense as well [Now you're thinking]. And I want today to show what we all know to be true — that in an economic downturn there are in fact huge opportunities for us to go green and stay cheap and indeed to be greener and cleaner and cheaper at the same time.
It is our job in City Hall not just to help Londoners to beautify and improve the city, so making it an ever more attractive place to come to live and invest. It is our job to help Londoners save money. Every week I authorise new combined heat and power plants in developments across the city, intended to deliver energy and hot water locally. And this CHP means that our houses no longer have to emit those shaming plumes of gas from our own individual boilers.
"Like Barbara Boxer within her Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on climate change this afternoon, Baby makes the rules," we captioned this image of the Babe last March, citing the latest derring do of two of our heroes fighting the good fight, Senator James Inhofe and Czech Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus.
"Mews and whispers," January 2004: "Ominous use of dark and light and lengthy sequences without dialogue characterize both Tiny and Baby's and Ingmar Bergman's films."
"Is it time yet?" October 2007: "Tiny, above, using the Think System to evoke the magic words — Want your suppers? — that will conjure up the bowls of Friskies 'Special Diet.'"
"The sounds of silence," October 2007: "As the mystical moment of incantation — Want your suppers? — drew near, the brooding Bergmanesque mask of 'Meows and whispurrs' slipped a little, Tiny's eyes glazing over and Baby's restive gaze and tilt of the head seeming to say 'Come on, Grandma. Let's eat!'"
Now here's our repost of "Lengthy sequences without dialogue" from August 2007 in full:
"Ominous use of dark and light and lengthy sequences without dialogue characterize both Tiny and Baby's and Ingmar Bergman's films," we wrote a couple of years back, comparing the cinematographic style of the Chelsea Grays' "Want your supper?" with that of the great Swedish director's "The Virgin Spring." Now, this very afternoon, in the magic light of a setting sun, Baby (left) and Tiny are at it again, inviting our camera's eye to explore the sounds of silence.
"What the hammer? what the chain, In what furnace was thy brain? What the anvil? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp?" asked William Blake rhetorically in our all-time fave poem, "The Tyger," cited in our October 2005 post "What immortal hand or eye?" featuring the late, great Baby Cakes (above) and his sister "with fire burning bright in their eyes as they defended their turf from the intruder."
"Music to my ears," we wanted to write in the comments to Horsefeathers's latest post, cum video, "Nobody asked me but," BUT … we were unable to comment due to some inscrutable technical thing about registering that just didn't work for us, so here are excerpts of his argument, followed by our own frustrated but heartfelt comments:
We are weakened by our own therapeutic approach to the jihad. Were we to destroy the symbols of Islam, they'd be at our feet instead of at our throats.
When sharia law prevails and Bach is banned, somewhere there will remain a hidden version of the single greatest musical piece ever composed, played by the greatest pianist to ever interpret it: Here's a portion of the Goldberg Variations played by Glenn Gould. Proof, if any more were needed, of the superiority of Western culture. Let's hope 2009 is a year when the West wakes up and vows to defend itself.
Citing exerpts from an imail conversation with our sis this evening, here's what we wanted to write in the comments:
"It brings a spiritual transformation. The rebirth is real. The change is good.
"I used to avoid this truth by applauding — as you can — the practical work of mission churches in Africa. It’s a pity, I would say, that salvation is part of the package, but Christians black and white, working in Africa, do heal the sick, do teach people to read and write …
"But this doesn’t fit the facts. Faith does more than support the missionary; it is also transferred to his flock. This is the effect that matters so immensely, and which I cannot help observing."
"Parris goes on to describe the transformation he has observed, the difference between the converted and those still mired in tribal attitudes," writes neo:
He says the former are more open, relaxed, lively, curious, and engaged with the world. Parris rejects the cultural/moral relativism that denies that there is anything inherently better about these sort of attitudes as opposed to the characteristics fostered by traditional tribal beliefs. Instead, he insists on making a distinction, and a judgment.
Snowball has been going through her health issues the past three years,
I have had to think long and hard about Snowball's role in our life. I
decided I needed to invert that, and focus on our role in her life.
It is the same with Baby. You fed him, took care
of him, and showed the world what a beauty he was. You let him be
vulnerable with you and never lose his dignity. You loved him — that
was your role.
And he loved you in return. Seems like a good
trade. The pain of losing someone you love was going to be there no
matter when or how Baby died. Would you have traded the pleasure to not
have the pain?
I have enjoyed the Baby photo retrospective.
A number of them made me smile the first time around, and made me smile
again. What a lucky cat he was to live with you. What lucky people you
were to be able to take care of him. And what lucky people we readers
were to see such amazing, beautiful portraits.
For you, Carol, and all of Cakes's cherished circle of admirers, more seasonal images from the Baby photo retrospective, "The Lion King in Winter":
"Baby steps out into the Kitty Play Yard this afternoon to case the joint," we captioned this image in January of 2005 when "with 2 1/2 feet of snow in the side yard — what with drifting, not to mention steady snowfall — we started shoveling out over the bottom half of the Dutch door, moving on outside to carve a path to the little house plus a side route to the patio table, a good place for poodies to jump up and command a larger view.
Pausing during her rounds this morning, in a particular spot we'd never seen her occupy before atop the studio file cabinets and framed by Tuck's model of "America," Tiny appears lost in thought. We're thinking the fading scent of her brother in all the usual places must be a puzzlement to the feline mind.
Then, too, there's the cabin-fever aspect of her mindset in the wake of yesterday's substantial snowfall, followed by today's single-digit temperatures and sub-zero windchill factor. The usual opportunities for territorial patrol to destroy vermin (above) and run off feline intruders aren't available.
She did have her own version of New Year's Day Eggs Benedict and champagne for brunch — an extra serving of wet cat food and a shot of catnip — and is at the moment upstairs in a box in the attic sleeping it off.