Mr. Bigglesworth

Just after I bought my rundown 1888 Victorian-style house in 2002, I hired a couple of guys to mow the overgrown lawn. They found a tiny kitten, more the size of a large caterpillar than a kitten you’d expect to find on its own. My kids and I literally got an eyedropper with which to feed him (we also found that dipping the corner of a washcloth in the formula worked, too). We doubted he’d make it, but he did. It wasn’t long before he was out getting into fights and we had him neutered.

I was stumped on what to name him. My son was in a Monty Python phase at the time, and chose “Knigget.” I went along with it, since I couldn’t decide on anything else. The kids called him Knigget for a while, but it wore off, and we took to addressing him as “kitty” and referring to him as “the cat.” We tried various names on and off, but nothing stuck.

I developed a serious relationship, and my partner started calling him “Mr. Cat.” That was perfect, we all agreed. It worked well until my partner moved out without notice, leaving me dazed, confused, angry and relieved all at once. The words “Mr. Cat” would triggering all sorts of post getting-dumped feelings. So the poor thing (actually oblivious and indifferent to all this) was back to “kitty” and “the cat” and, on formal occasions such as trips to the vet, “Knigget.”

But now tonight, a private student just left. During her lesson, the cat was weaving in and out of us, rubbing against me. I picked him up and spontaneously said, “come here, Mr. Bigglesworth.”

Now that feels right. I don’t have that much of a Dr. Evil air about me (or so I think), but like many arts types I live in my own egocentric universe. For tonight, anyway, Mr. Bigglesworth he is.

(If you don’t get the “Mr. Bigglesworth” reference, well, you are even more out of touch and uncool than am I!)

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