Sophus the Cat

My first wife had a cat named Cassandra, and she had a litter of three kittens. One was grey, black and white, and we called him Batman. Two were ginger, and I don’t remember what we called them, but the neighbour who took one of them in called him Sophus. He grew up to become a fine tomcat and a great hunter.

Sophus and his owner lived on the ground floor with a little garden on the edge of a park. So the cat would come home with prey and lay it at his owner’s feet. There were birds, including the fast ones, and small rodents. Sophus was good. But hunting wasn’t always good. After his second-worst day in that park, Sophus came home with an earthworm.

On his blackest day ever, Sophus the cat came home with a potato.

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  1. #1 Charles Butcher
    February 2, 2009

    Classic! My cat was frightened (like me) of spiders.

    But Martin, since I’m a professional writer and especially because your English is better than mine, I feel duty bound to point out that in your first sentence “she” refers to “my first wife”.

  2. #2 George
    February 2, 2009

    Maybe our expectations of cats are higher than they should be.

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  3. #3 catgirl
    February 2, 2009

    Growing up, I had twin cats who would go to the field behind our house to hunt. One of them often brought home mice, but the other one brought home leaves, and he would be so proud because he thought he had actually caught something. His proudest moment was when he brought home a small branch with 5 or 6 leaves on it.

  4. #4 Lassi Hippeläinen
    February 2, 2009

    Hunting? Modern kittens are too lazy to even walk…

  5. #5 Martin R
    February 2, 2009

    Charles, in this case “she” by grammatical necessity refers to Britney Spears.

  6. #6 Pär
    February 2, 2009

    My cat Konjak – elder statesman, destroyer of worlds – once caught a viper (the reptile, not the car, though I wouldn’t put it past him).

  7. #7 chezjake
    February 2, 2009

    I once had a 7.5 lb (3.4 kg) Siamese cat who brought home an 8 lb (3.63 kg) rabbit.

  8. #8 Felicia Gilljam
    February 2, 2009

    I think catgirls cat was secretly vegan and just pretending to be mentally retarded so the other cats wouldn’t tease him. Yeah, I think cats would be more tolerant of retardation than veganism.

  9. #9 llewelly
    February 3, 2009

    … I feel duty bound to point out that in your first sentence “she” refers to “my first wife”.

    Only an english teacher, an editor, or dedicated pedant would understand it that way.

  10. #10 kai
    February 3, 2009

    My girlfriends’ big cat only hunts aphids, possibly because he doesn’t have to run after them, but now he has revealed an appetite for canned vegetable soup. I also suspect he’s really vegan, and feels misunderstood.

    Martin: first Bajs-Arne, and now Sop-hus, what’s with the denigrating cat names?

  11. #11 Martin R
    February 3, 2009

    House of Waste has a certain pharaonic ring to it IMHO.

  12. #12 DianaGainer
    February 3, 2009

    This English teacher totally missed the reference to the wife having kittens, assuming it was the cat doing that. Maybe my mind was elswhere, grieving over the untimely demise of yet another demented computer yesterday afternoon. I have no cats but my little terrier caught a baby rabbit once. I popped him on the rear to make him let it go. He did and it scurried away under the fence. He sulked about it for two hours. Would a cat sulk if you made it let go of its prize mouse/leaf/rabbit/viper?

  13. #13 Amber
    February 5, 2009

    One of the ginger kittens was called Gollum. It was the first one that was born – it was so ugly…

  14. #14 Eduardo Bessa
    February 7, 2009

    The other day my cat brought home a Holly Ghost dove which was hanging from a neighbour’s door. He was so desapointed the stuffed bird wasn’t fighting back.

    Your soon-to-be science blogger friend


  15. #15 blf
    February 8, 2009

    Have you ever seen a potato fight? They’re vicious little buggers! Or so I’m told… I only ever see them after in the bins at the local organics shop, after they’ve been subdued and killed.

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