Archive for the ‘cats’ Tag

Coincidences No.s 349-355

No. 349 Rome

villa wolkonsky British Ambassador's residence rome

The Villa Wolkonsky, British Ambassador’s residence in Rome

I am on a train to Exeter to be on the panel of a documentary pitching session at Two Short Nights film festival. I am with my colleague Harold who is telling me about his choir and a recent performance at the British Ambassador’s residence in Rome.

As he mentions the residence an email notification appears on my phone, right that second. It is from a woman at the British School at Rome (interdisciplinary research centre) who I met at a cocktail party at the British Ambassador’s residence in Rome, Villa Wolkonsky, when I was in the city in October to speak at the MIA Film Festival.

No. 350 A Man of Parts

things to come hg wells on set

HG Wells on the set of ‘Things to Come’

I am finishing a novel, A Man of Parts by David Lodge, about HG Wells, which I started ages ago but never got round to completing. The date is 28th October 2018.

I notice that I started reading it on 29th October 2015.

No. 351 Rishikesh

beatles white album portraits

A see an old Channel 4 colleague of mine at the annual Christmas drinks of Sheffield-based indie, Joi Polloi – an event now known as The Circle. He wants to train in transcendental meditation and one of the places he is considering is Rishikesh in Northern India.

I have just finished a book called Revolution: The Making of the Beatles’ White Album by David Quantick. It centres on Rishikesh where much of the album was composed. It’s the only context in which I’ve ever come across the city.

No. 352 Dimmer Switches

Heavyweight podcast by Jonathan Goldstein

I am listening to an episode of the Heavyweight podcast by Jonathan Goldstein, one of my very favourite podcasts. It is one about the making of the ‘one-take’ film Russian Ark by ¬†Alexander Sokurov. In it there is discussion of changing a dimmer switch/rheostat to a regular on-off switch.

Just before leaving the house for the jog on which I was listening to Heavyweight I had had a domestic discussion about changing a dimmer switch/rheostat to a regular on-off switch – not a regular topic of conversation in our household.

No. 353 Meeting Your Heroes

Pete Shelley, Tony Wilson, Howard Devoto - Buzzcocks

Pete Shelley, Tony Wilson, Howard Devoto (L to R)

The news of the death of Pete Shelley of the Buzzcocks is on the radio news. I met him once (as well as seeing him perform, supported by Joy Division at the Lyceum, London) on the studio set of a TV comedy entertainment show called In Bed With Medinner, execed by Jeff Pope [Philomena]. He turned out to be a bit of a cock, pissed on champagne, and made me think of that old adage about not meeting your heroes. Steve Diggle, the guitarist in the band, thankfully was a much more pleasant individual and asked for his wasted mate to be excused.

The next morning on the same radio station I am listening to novelist David Mitchell talk about his collaboration with singer Kate Bush on the Before The Dawn concerts in 2014. He evokes that old adage about not meeting your heroes and explains that in his instance with Kate Bush it did not apply, she lived up to his image of her.

No. 354 Catwatching

catwatching by desmond morris book

Ziggy look-a-like

I order the book Catwatching by Desmond Morris for my cat-loving older son for Christmas.

The book arrives today – I peel off the plastic cover and the cat on the front cover is our cat Ziggy – or a clone of her.

No. 355 Benny Goodman

Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa

Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa

I am talking to Enfant Terrible No. 1 about racism in football. It brings us on to a discussion of the movie Green Book and he says he is glad the pianist Don Shirley did not play in a restaurant in the Deep South in which he was not permitted to eat alongside his white band members by dint of the colour of his skin. I mention that it was jazz clarinetist and band leader Benny Goodman who made a stand on this issue, refusing to have his band divided on the basis of skin colour.

The same day I am reading a crappy-but-enjoyable adventure novel (based on the Richard Hannay books), The Thirty-One Kings by Robert J. Harris. It mentions Benny Goodman.

Benny Goodman is who introduced me to jazz via a record I bought on my first trip to LA as a teenager, his greatest hits including Sing Sing Sing, featuring the proto-Keith Moon which was Gene Krupa on drums. Goodman is closely related to my best man’s Argentinian wife.





Pet names in pairs

As well as setting great store by titles, I love names. On Saturday afternoon we went out to the wonderful Scratching Post (cat rescue charity) in Waltham Abbey and found these two beauties…

two young catsWe were only looking for one to succeed the late Tommy Boy Murphy (named after a record label) but as soon as the orange one came into sight he was destined for our house and then the tabby appeared in the background and it turned out they came as a sibling pair.  So it seemed right to seek out a pair of names fitting a boy & girl pair and I put out the call in social media. Names flowed in from all quarters. Even since the names have been decided, the Facebook thread has continued to flow, so it feels like the right thing to do to make all the great suggestions people have kindly offered available to future searchers of paired animal names.

In the end we went for two halves of two pairs, Tango (from Tango & Cash) and Ziggy (from Ziggy & Stardust), the former the orange boy and the latter the grey girl. Tango & Ziggy.

Along the way to those chosen names, here are the suggestions people proposed – thanks to all the friends and family who offered names and I hope this list helps other new parents down the line…

Ziggy & Stardust
Ziggy & Dusty
Zig & Zag
Yin & Yang
Ping & Pong
Shelley & Cooper (after Sheldon Cooper)
Marvin & Tammy
Frida & Diego
Ike & Tina
Harold & Maude
Bogey & Bacall
Scott & Zelda
Maria & Tony
Smokey & Bandit
Pearl & Dean
James & Carole (after Taylor / King)
Crosby & Hope – Bing & Bob
Lois & Clark
Nick & Nora (Dashiell Hammett)
Kit & Kaboodle
Fish & Chips
Posh & Becks
Ronald & Nancy
Artemis & Apollo
Starbuck and Apollo
Smith & Wesson
Armstrong & Miller
Butch & Sundance
Cheech & Chong
Hoddle & Waddle (Spurs)
Darby & Joan
Ginger & Fred
Thing One & Thing Two
Fortnum & Mason
Sooty & Sue
Rhubarb & Custard
Gin & Tonic
Tweedledum & Tweedledee
Tom & Jerry/Geri
Crazy Horse & Custer
Sonny & Cher
Boris & Ken
Whiskey & Ginger
Orson & Rita
Tristan & Isolde
Ron & Hermione
Sapphire & Steel
Steed & Purdey – Steed & Mrs Peel
Richard & Judy
Thisone & Thatone
Bangers & Mash
Toast & Marmalade
Bubble & Squeak
Samson & Delilah
Lucille & Desi
Hall & Oats
Dennis & Maggie
George and Mildred
Oberon and Titania
Troilus and Cressida
Micky and Mallory
Bang & Olufsen
S & M
M & S
Gamble and Huff
Frost & Nixon
Jack & Jill
Joseph & Mary
Dido & Aeneas
Thelma & Louise
Pye & Wacket
Lepsy and Tonic (short for Catalepsy and Catatonic)
Black & Decker
Roy & Haylee
Miles & Davis
Miles & Coltrane/Trane
Lambert and Butler
Benson & Hedges
Betsy and Bunty
Heffalump and Woozle
Blackberry and Apple
Gilbert and George
Sponge Bob and Square Pants
Mork & Mindy
Penn & Teller
Sodom and Gomorrah
Vic & Bob
Tango & Cash
Leopold and Bloom
Boswell and Johnson
Gilbert & Sullivan
Turner & Hooch
Terry & June
Dempsey & Makepeace
Rogoff and Reinhart
Eric & Ernie
1 & 0
Sturm & Drang
Mulder & Scully
Sid & Nancy

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