Tuesday, 30 May 2006

Language without Mind

I wasn't really joking about turning this place over to the dancing kitties and so forth. It's lucky we got that extremely fast internet connection, because I already watched this video of a completely random cat squeaking out the window seven or eight times today. It's helping me write a conference paper.




Does your cat squeak at birds and bugs and things it sees out the window? And what is the squeaking's purpose? When Basil does it I get a sudden glimpse of how alien his mind actually is.

If you've been reading this blog for a while you might possibly remember in my 100 things list I mentioned a childrens picture book I had once about a rabbit who liked the taste of meat. There's a post of mine up at Sarsaparilla today about the actual book, which I've recently acquired a copy of. I was almost surprised to find out it actually existed.

12 comments:

Ben.H said...

Well, at least it makes a change from Ceiling Cat.

Zoe said...

You would like our Mischa, Miss Laura. She inhabits a whole different crazy world of mad catness.

Ampersand Duck said...

Oh, that video brings back such memories of my last cat, Karma! (I got the name from Patrick Cook's cartoon of a hippy chick with a bicycle admonishing a small ashamed-looking dog: 'Bad Karma! Bad Karma!')

She would squeak at birds through windows, out in the garden, sitting behind the screen-door; anywhere she spotted a bird. I think it's the cat trying to talk to the bird, to convince it that they're a nice cat, a gentle cat, not meaning any harm... CHOMP!

The boys do it a little bit, but with nowhere near the desperate enthusiasm of poor Karma.

Lucy Tartan said...

I only have to look at Mischa's eyes to see how things are with her. Love a good mad cat.

My hypothesis about the squeaking is also that it's meant to be some kind of communication with the birds. Gawd.

Val said...

Our two cats squeak at us. Should we be alert and alarmed??

Kate said...

Well, when I played that video my dog ran up and cocked her head at me, with her ears in the 'what what what'? position. Then I started meowing at her and she started darting around looking for the cat. Ah the joys of being unemployed!

elsewhere said...

there is cruel and evil laughter in the background!

Tim said...

My cat does that too, although strangely none of the other cats I've owned/known have done it. I'm relieved to discover that he's not a freak, or that if he is a freak at least he has company. I like to think that to the cat's ears his pathetic yodelling sounds like a full-blooded roar. The birds remain unconvinced.

Lucy Tartan said...

Be afraid, Val....very afraid.

Mindy said...

Only one of our cats does it. Interestingly (or not) she also spent the first two years of her life squeaking exclusively, she didn't meow at all. She does now, but squeaking is still very popular. I also love the automatic jaw crunching thing they do when they see a bird and get excited.

Anonymous said...

My cat, LMD (Little Miss Destructo), does it, too. My interpretation is not her communicating with the prey but with me. I think it's the small-cat version of letting her hunting buddies know there's dinner in the offing but, strangely, it's only bugs that make her react like this.

Mel said...

My favourite part is the laughter! I laughed when the squeaking breaks out in a pitiful miaow and the videoer can't help laughing. I also like it when someone in the background asks "Still going?"