Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Happy Meeting--Discussion Thread

They decided to call the dog Caesar...supposedly a common name in both countries. I'm sure all us Bettys have pet ownership experience. So, 1) What have the pet names been? and 2) How did you go about finding the right one?

Aldrik allows his grandmother to win at cribbage which is a sure sign that he has his priorities in the right place. Ten years of motherhood have taught me to be an indifferent Scrabble player and positively careless at chess. Don't get me started on Old Maid and Memory...They practically hand out leaflets at the hospital titled 'How to Take a Dive for Your New Baby'
On her way to Holland, Cressida shares a cabin with three strange women. Oh I can do you one better. On a night train out of Venice (heading to Rome) I shared a train sleeping compartment with my husband and two strange men. I'm sure it would have bothered me a little had I not been completely knackered but as it was I popped off my shoes, closed my eyes, ignored the pleading of my bladder and fell to...
Speaking of knackered...Aldrik has a couple of percherons purchased from the knackers. I wonder how you go about doing that. I mean, they're there to be...oh dear, this is such an expressively clinical word...rendered (not fed and held in a pasture for more than a day or so) and I wouldn't imagine that Aldrik would be one to stroll past a knackery (yes) on his days off.

Nicola is the name of the villainess and Betty Debbie comes from just a geeky enough family to be forcibly reminded of brilliant electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. Though not blonde, he is flat-chested (as presumably Nicola was) and a bit of a cold fish (which you just know she is). Tesla never married. He was celibate and claimed that his chastity was very helpful to his scientific abilities. Nonetheless there have been numerous accounts of women vying for Tesla's affection, even some madly in love with him. Tesla, though polite, behaved rather ambivalently to these women in the romantic sense.
I don't know if I buy that. He's got a look, that one.

How YOU doin,?

Cressida gets stuck polishing the family epergne. Yeah. I had to look that one up. There's an interesting article on the history of epergnes here. Wikipedia has a less detailed article:

An epergne generally has a large central "bowl" or basket sitting on three to five feet. From this center "bowl" radiate branches supporting small baskets, dishes, or candle holders. There may be between two and seven branches. Epergnes were traditionally made from silver, however from around the turn of the century glass was also employed.

The epergne is a large table centerpiece which may hold any type of food or dessert. It may also be used as a designer object to hold candles, flowers or ornaments for a holiday etc.

In traditional use, the epergne was a fancy way to display side dishes, fruit, or sweetmeats, or can be used for chips, dips, or other finger foods etc.

Chips and dips? An epergne would come in very useful at World Cup or Super Bowl parties.


  1. Betty Barbara here--
    My father never did master the trick of letting the children win--too competitive! So family fun night as a small child was never quite fun enough. Now Mom, she could 'throw a game' with the best of them! (And wasn't strange--but as we got older and better at the games, so did she!)

    Now about that original cover--I just love the shoulder pads in her blouse, and the mini-skirt effect(neither of which a Neels heroine would be caught wearing!), coupled with the reddish hair (don't think our Cressy had reddish hair)pulled back in a severe French twist with the pompadour front effect. This has to rank up there in the bad cover art poll.

  2. That hair is awful. It looks like a small furry animal crawled up on her head to take a nap.

  3. Pet names: Thirty years ago, I coaxed a young, feral cat to become a domestic pet. He was very timid at first, and his coloring (black & white tuxedo) was like a famous fruit crate label for Tom Cat oranges, so my mother suggest we call the feral cat Tim Cat, which quickly became Timmo. (Wonderful cat who died tragically young of feline leukemia, aka "kitty AIDS.")

    Our current cats were named during my marriage to Betty Henry. His last name is Blanco White (no hyphen) which is, yes, White White. So he and I had a list of funny kids' names (we were 42 when we married, so no kids): Albion, Bianca, Blanche, Crystal, Diamond, and Snowe. When we decided to adopt these 5-month-old kittens, I said to Betty Henry we could use one of those names.

    Only the female was a tri-color (white, orange marmalade, and gray tabby) so Betty Henry said, "We can't call her White White - she's polychromatic." She became Polly, and Linus (her brother) simply because Linus Pauling suggested those two names went together.

    Last story (sorry you asked?) -- Betty Ross and I love the show "How I Met Your Mother" and one episode explained the rules of "Zitch Dog," a car game in which the first person to spot a dog yells, "Zitch Dog!" before the other passengers. So we figured we'd name a boy dog "Zitch." And if it was a girl, we'd name it Mia, because a British dog show, "It's Me Or The Dog," came on, but when I told Betty Ross the name, what he heard was, "It's Mia The Dog."

    Only when we got our dog (a Rhodesian Ridgeback mix previously named Goldie), for some reason Mia didn't fit. So we called her Mimi, which suits her just fine.

    I like the explanation in An Old-Fashioned Girl of how Wisp the cat was so named because when he (she?) was rescued, it was just a wisp of a thing.

  4. Our first two pets were named when we got them, and the names fit, Lady for the Sheltie and Tiger for the cat. When we got our throw-away kitten (someone threw her from a car) we struggled for a few days. She is soft and grey, disappears and reappears at will, and loves to chase the cursor across the computer screen, hence the name "Mouse." Also very ironic given my renewed love for LaNeels!

  5. We have an imaginary Scotty named Christopher Marlowe. He never has to be taken out, fed or groomed and he is always ready to play with the kinder.

  6. We're a cat house (ok, don't go there! :)) Since my husband and I married almost 20 years ago, we had Macavity, Doodlebug, Shadow, Lynx and now Moose. I hadn't seen Cats or knew much about it when Cav came to the house. I'd read the poems years before and the poor baby (a Burmese) crept around the house (out of fear; he was a rescue). I named him for the image I remembered out of the school reader, a cat in a trench coat.

    Lynx and Shadow were named for what they looked like.

    Doodlebug was a marmalade tabby and it took FOREVER to find him a name. He was my computer cat/printing supervisor and I miss him terribly still.

    Moose came to us already named that and haughtily refused renaming.

  7. Where on earth do you find these pictures? My girls would be very upset over the MLP Glue factory. ;)

    1. I was very upset when I first saw it.

    2. I almost bust a gut over the My Little Pony Glue Factory picture, I was laughing so hard... Still chuckling now.