Sunday, September 2, 2007

The Biggest Challenge

When I found the kitten, I thought the trickiest part would be integrating him into my already cozy household of 3 cats and a dog. Of course, there was also the potential that my husband would snap and murder me in a fit of cat overkill. I had no idea that simply naming him would be so difficult. What's so hard about picking out a name anyway? It turns out a lot!

Initially, I called him Smidgen. He was so little, tiny that he needed a cutsie name. Anything else would have seemed to big for him. After some nutritious food and a safe environment he grew like a weed and Smidgen suddenly seemed like it wasn't going to fit much longer. A quest for a real name began.

Friday's full name is Friday the 13th because he's a solid black cat. Since the kitten is also solid black I thought it might be fun to name him something similar, sort of a cat name theme. I racked my brain and the Internet. I looked up web sites devoted to topics on Halloween and superstitions. Nothing seemed to match his personality. It was all so sinister and he's actually quite a lover. I gave up on the theme.

The kitten is a real lover but he's fiercely brave too. I decided to explore this avenue for a while. I wondered about famous people known for similar traits. The only one I could come up with was Don Juan and I didn't like that name. Ok, fine. I turned my attention to characters known for being brave lovers. Swashbucklers! Swashbucklers are notorious for romancing women and fighting daring battles. I could see the kitten with a little bandanna on his head and patch over one eye swinging from a rope on a ship, sword in paw. That reminded me of one of my favorite movies, The Princess Bride. Giddy, I decided The Dread Pirate Roberts was the perfect name for my kitten and stubbornly insisted on calling him by his full name.

I soon got tired of trying to force six syllables out of my mouth every time I wanted to play with the kitten or stop him from climbing the side of the sofa. I'm a good talker but all those words were starting to stress me out and I couldn't think of a decent nickname so I scuttled The Dread Pirate Roberts and went back to work.

My husband and I toyed with all sorts of ideas: Bacardi, Rasputin, Burt, Barney – hey, we were getting desperate. The last straw for my husband was when I wanted to name the kitten Stevie Nicks because he makes a sound like a goat. I really wanted to call him Stevie Nicks but Brian reasoned that his meow might change as he gets older and ruin my joke. Sometimes life just isn't fair.

There was one name I kept coming back to throughout them all. Seti, like the Egyptian pharaoh. Apart from a somewhat goofy looking face the kitten is extremely sleek and long. His frame reminds me of tomb paintings of Egyptian hunting cats. The pharaoh Seti was the son of Ramses the first and the father of Ramses the Great. Under his leadership, Egypt kicked the butts of its enemies and built some really cool, big buildings. That seems like my kitten. Brave and artsy all rolled into one fur covered, black speck besides the name Seti has the added benefit of only two syllables.

So, Seti is the kitten's newest, and final, name. He doesn't answer to it yet but since it's approximately the sixth name I've given him it might take a while to catch on. Since he's only a couple of months old we've got all the time in the world.


Victor Tabbycat said...

Seti seems like a purrfect name! A friend called her now-departed cat Braveheart, but I like Seti. It's subtle and mysterious, like a cat. Ok, kittens aren't very subtle.

Kit sounds a lot like Bonnie - territorial an pissed off at intruders. We haf our tiffs wif lots of Bonnie growlin an hissin, but no one efur gets hurted.

Jennifer said...

I'm glad no one got hurt! Kit really does know how to defend her territory. Sometimes I feel bad for her. She's a relatively normal cat surrounded by abject insanity.

miss T said...

Hey Jennifer,

I love the whole naming adventure thang and felt bitterly disappointed that your husband wouldn't go along "Stevie Nicks" because what a damn cool name that is!! However, Seti is also cool and definately seems to suit your delicious looking new puss. Lucky you! 4 cats and a dog! You are an inspiration. I shall call upon your website when next hammering Dave for the next new puddy in our line-up. Looking forward to reading more of the family antics. :)

Jennifer said...

Perhaps I should write a post on how to sneak additional pets past husbands? Stevie Nicks is a totally cool name.

jamina1 said...

Seti looks like my newest cat!
I figured she was pretty young when I got her (about 8-11 months old) and I couldn't figure out a good name for her.

I ended up naming her Pagan. She likes it.. though she's got a love-hate relationship going on with my other kitty, Sylvanas.

Anonymous said...