Hasty Ruminations

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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

RIP Bogey


A friend has lost his friend: Stew's and Jen's cat has died.

I searched for an appropriate tribute to their cat of three names*, and I landed on one of my favorite musical theater composers.

. *(Bogey, Ampukitty and Tripod)

Andrew Lloyd Webber will receive a Kennedy Center Honor in December, one of America's most prestigious cultural accolades. Lloyd Webber said: "I'm very flattered to have been asked to join the impressive list of people the Kennedy Center has honored over the years." Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will present the award.

Film director Steven Spielberg, musicians Dolly Parton and Smokey Robinson and conductor Zubin Mehta will also receive awards.

Kennedy Center chairman Stephen A Schwarzman said., "Andrew Lloyd Webber has led a seismic change in our musical theatre, becoming the most popular theatre composer in the world."

The day after the ceremony, President George W Bush and his wife Laura will receive the honorees at the White House before a special gala performance at the Kennedy Center.

Paul Newman, Tony Bennett, Tina Turner, Robert Redford, Jack Nicholson and Julie Andrews have all received the same recognition in the past.

The tribute is Webber's "The Naming of Cats" from Cats:

The naming of cats is a difficult matter
It isn't just one of your holiday games
You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter
When I tell you a cat must have three different names

First of all, there's the name that the family use daily
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey
All of them sensible, everyday names

There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames
Such as Plato, Admetas, Electra, Demeter
But all of them sensible everyday names

But I tell you a cat needs a name that's particular
A name that's peculiar, and more dignified
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?

Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo or Coricopat
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum
Names that never belong to more than one cat

But above and beyond there's still one name left over
And that is the name that you never will guess
The name that no human research can discover
But the at himself knows, and will never confess

When you notice a cat in profound meditation
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought
Of the thought
Of the thought
Of his name
His ineffable effable effanineffable
Deep and inscrutable singular name


  • At 7:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Greg,
    This is Jen, the REAL owner of Bogey! I guess I should include Stew since he changed her litter, once or twice! I just wanted to thank you for your tribute to Tripod, Ampukitty, Bogey. I have seen Cats several times but never got all the lyrics.

    Thanks again!

  • At 9:48 PM, Blogger Gerbera Daisy said…

    RIP Jen & Stew's Kitty :-(

  • At 10:34 AM, Blogger Greg Finnegan said…

    Thanks, Gerbera Daisy.

    Jen, I'm so sorry for your loss. I've changed the article to reflect Bogey's real lineage.

    As I told Stew before, the reason pets die young is that they don't need as much time as people do to get ready for heaven.


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