Saturday, December 01, 2007

What's in a name?

I was thinking about my animal friends, and how I usually try to give them middle names as well as first names. Also, I am happy to say, I've never named a pet something like Blackie or Spots, the closest to that being a gray striped cat I named Tiger, but I was in third grade at the time, so I can excuse myself on that one. Anyway, I like to give animals real names since they're going to be part of the family. That's my reasoning. So this morning I thought about giving Phoebe a middle name, which is now Sophia. I think Phoebe Sophia has a nice ring to it. (And can I just say I love the name my friend L.'s kids gave to their new kitten Harriet Monkey!? Is that too cute?)

My oldest cat is named Sebastian Armand, though we call him Boo-Boo Man or just Boo. His brother (from the same litter) was Morrissey James, and we called him Bug. Boo and Bug, my two guys for many, many years before esposo and son came along. At 19 years old, Boo is still with us, though his brother crossed over the rainbow bridge a few years ago.

Sebastian Armand, aka Boo

The next-oldest is Bookie (that's a long o as in Boo-kie, not Book-y). His real name is Boris Orangello, and he checks in at 7 years old and 22 pounds. Most people who see him are amazed by his girth. Most people have never seen a cat as large as Bookie. Bookie is the kind of cat you really don't want jumping on you from the top of the closet in the middle of the night. Bookie gets his name from a Cat Chow commercial that played on t.v. here years ago (about 7 years ago, I guess!), where the guy always sounded like he was saying Boris instead of Morris to the big orange cat (Portate bien, Boris!). Orangello comes from that urban legend about the woman who named her kids after the jello on the hostpital menu. His nickname, Bookie, comes from the new version of Star Wars where Jabba is in the Moss Isley hangar talking to Han, and says, "Han, ma bookie..." Since Boris was about the size of Jabba, we thought that was the perfect nickname for him.

Boris Orangello, aka Bookie

After Bookie, we didn't get any more cats for a while, because Bug and Venus (esposo's much-loved Maine coon named after the great tennis player Venus Williams who happened to be winning Wimbledon at the time the cat showed up) were living, and four cats was really enough. Then we had a little cafe in Ciudad Colon, and our first cafe cat got stolen, so the guys decided to get another cat. I saw the cutest little baby tortie at the agro next door, and they give cats away for free, so I picked her out. Then I fell in love with her and refused to take her back to the cafe, so she stayed. Her name is Katrina (after the hurricane that hit that year), and while I think she does have a middle name, I can't remember what it is. Maybe we'll have to rename her. We call her Kiki.

Hurricane Katrina, aka Kiki

As we were moving out of that house, a little white kitten showed up and didn't want to leave. After a while, we realized she was completely deaf and was not going to make it running the streets as she was. So we took her to the new house with us. Venus and Bug had both crossed over the rainbow bridge by that time, so white kitten made four cats total. I decided to name her every girl name that I really loved but were shot down by esposo when I was pregnant and we were thinking of names for the baby (lucky for esposo, we had a boy). So white kitten became Olivia Finnoula Siobahn, though my son called her Kitters and that sort of stuck. Sometimes he calls her Livvers.

Olivia Finnoula Siobahn, aka Kitters

Lastly, of course, was the kitten we didn't intend to keep, Phoebe Sophia. She hasn't been here long enough to acquire a real nickname, though we call her Phoeebs or or Phoebe Kitten. Son was calling her New Kitters for a while.

Phoebe Sophia

Some other day, I'll write about the dogs. There are nine of them, so it will take me a little longer.

P.S. I remembered Kiki's middle name. It's Anya.
P.P.S. Be sure to click on that link to the Orangello urban legend and read the comments. Some of the names were so funny that I laughed until my eyes were watering! (The racist crap on there is totally uncalled for, however.) Reminded me about a guy I went to high school with named Sterling Silver. He was so cute...


  1. Boo looks good for his age :)
    Kiki DOES look almost like a carbon copy of Amelie (who's nickname this week and for the past couple of weeks has become BatShite because that's how crazy she is, loosing the milk-teeth and getting the grownup ones in)...

    Still can't get over how CUTE Phoebe is :) and I have this need to just belly rub Boris all day!

  2. Thanks! Phoebe is adorable. I realized, after taking her picture, that she has one green eye and one orange eye. She lets me pick her up now, and she's a super love of a kitty.

    Boo is not doing well these days; I came home last night and he could barely walk. He's mostly given up food and water, and I think this is probably the home stretch for him. Think good thoughts that he will go peacefully and without pain.

  3. Of course I will send soothing healing thoughts and energy his way..