Thursday, 31 January 2013

The centesimal cat

Perhaps there's some overkill with these century-related words, and I'm aware that a centurion was a Roman commander of 100 soldiers. I've also learned that centesimate means to select one out of every one hundred persons for punishment, or execution. A bit off-topic but it's good lexical stuff, and it's not every day you meet your 100th streetmog.

Streetmog number: 100
Streetmog name: Centurion
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Porch
Preferred stroke: Upper body rub
Character: Haughty
Other: Centurion was not in fact a Roman commander of 100 soldiers, but he certainly commands attention with his wonderful mane and handsome visage. I was delighted to run into him on one of the most reliable mog-hunting streets in Wimbledon as I knew that he'd be a fitting hundredth addition to the streetmog hall of fame. He was friendly, despite having an air of superiority, and allowed me to fuss over him for a bit, but we both knew that what he really wanted was to be let inside. When he realised that this wasn't on the cards, he became more stand-offish, to the point of looking pretty pissed-off. I think he's a smart kitty. And he's probably a she. Centurion, we salute you.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013


Three more mogs for the blog, which puts the Streetmog tally on the cusp of the big one hundred. Ninety nine mogs, and each one a delight. That number could easily have been surpassed today, as I spotted another three but they all appeared at once and were way too quick. So, a veritable plethora of felines which can only be put down to the rise in temperature, and with that my optimism for discovering new mogs for many months to come remains high. Creativity is lacking right now, so accept my apologies for the tacky use of Les Miserables names. At least they're of the moment.

Streetmog number: 97
Streetmog name: Cosette
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Window sill sanctuary
Preferred stroke: n/a
Character: Sceptic
Other: Cosette was the first of five cats spotted within a manic few minutes, all in one block of flats. She was the only one safely inside; two were having a stand off and then raced off, one vanished as soon as it had appeared, and the other one is featured below. Yes, I was a little bit excited to see so many mogs, but I was weighed down with mail and working in a pair so I couldn't drag my feet. Anyway, Cosette just sat and stared, unimpressed and perhaps a little bit puzzled by my appearance.

Streetmog number: 98
Streetmog name: Javert
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Wall
Preferred stroke: Full spine scratch
Character: Inquisitive
Other: Javert appeared all of a sudden, jumping up onto the wall, just as I'd said farewell to Cosette. He seemed very assured and proud, and was keen to know my business. He was also a most affectionate ginger who loved to be fussed over.

Streetmog number: 99
Streetmog name: Jean Valjean
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Window ledge & rosemary bush (although he clearly wanted in)
Preferred stroke: Head & chin rub
Character: Sop-bag
Other: Jean Valjean was spotted a while after the other mogs, on a nice quiet street near Wimbledon Park. He was one of the most vocal mogs I've met, miaowing like a good 'un as I approached his front door. He wasn't sure at first, but with some encouragement he jumped down from his window ledge and came over to say hello. He was an affectionate, soppy and very handsome mog and it was lovely to make his acquaintance at the end of a long day. And no, he wasn't being pursued by Javert.

Monday, 28 January 2013

Your Cat My Cat Whose Cat

A day with a difference today, as I had a journalist from Your Cat magazine in tow, complete with freelance photographer, in search for some live, as-it-happens Streetmog action. The idea was to accompany me on my round in the hope of capturing some postie-mog interaction for an article in April's issue of the magazine. After some patience and perseverance, we were lucky enough to run into a few cats who were happy to fulfill our goal. One wonderful mog, Mouse (formerly known as Grinch) came out to pose and play for us (with permission from her owners) but she won't be featured here as I'd already met her and thus knew where to find her ;) Another cat, a beautiful Siamese named Saki, escaped the attention of my camera as I was too busy holding her for the photographer; hopefully she'll also feature in the article. More on that when I have the details. Many thanks to the owners of Mouse and Saki for allowing us access to their fabulous felines. Both households had two more cats so I shall be on the look-out for their furry faces in the future...

Streetmog name: Don Crema de Albaricoque
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Window ledge (probably would prefer to be on inside window sill)
Preferred stroke: Under ear tickle
Character: Chillaxed
Other: Don Crema de Albaricoque was spotted by the photographer which was a boon, as we'd found our third cat of the day and the article would be a success. I was also delighted to capture a new one for the blog (and despite similarities to a couple of previous streetmogs, he's most certainly not a repeat). Don Crema de Albaricoque was a little nervy at first, but I won him over with a softly-softly mog-whispering approach and he proved to be a sweet, gentle and calm fellow. He was quite content to be sat on his ledge watching the world go by, although as the weather closed in I'm sure he'd have chosen to head indoors. 

Streetmog name: Mrs Norris
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Warm window sill
Preferred stroke: I wish I knew
Character: Nervy
Other: It's about time I named a cat after one of the Potter felines, and this one does bear a resemblance to Mrs Norris. She was sat, quite still, looking out of the side window and I couldn't resist sneaking this shot, although I always feel slightly uncomfortable when pointing my camera at someone's window. No matter, Mrs Norris was a gorgeous kitty and brings the streetmog tally to ninety six...four more and we will have a century of cats.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Lone ranger

The streetmog sightings have been on the sporadic side recently, which can only be put down to the frigid weather; the sun's made just one solitary appearance over the last couple of weeks, and the ground has remained icy-cold, which is not nice for pussy paws.

Streetmog name: Shere Khan
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Industrial estate (see below)
Preferred stroke: Head rub
Character: Perturbed
Other: It was a real surprise to come across this handsome fellow, as I was driving through the pretty unattractive and mog-unfriendly Merton industrial estate. As I'd not discovered a new cat in a while, I had to pull over and check him out. When I got close, I sensed that he wasn't a happy chappy. He seemed a bit confused and was acting very skittish, although he did come up to me for a brief hello and stroke before he moved on. I didn't have time to consider it then, but looking back I wonder if the poor moggle was lost, even hurt. There was plentiful miaowing and his tail was muddied and scruffy, signs perhaps of a run-in with a four wheeled beastie. I hope he's okay, and that he found his way home - he didn't look like a stray, so fingers crossed for this chap.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Pre-snow pussy parade

I thought I might be writing a sorrowful post this evening, lamenting the lack of streetmogs. However, they were out in full feline force today. It was a clear and sunny one, (freezing yes, but lovely) and I'm convinced the mogs had a sixth sense about the impending snow and were seizing the opportunity to get out for some fresh air before the radiator-hogging begins once more. A lucky seven cats were actually spotted today, but four of them (including a massive tabby and a gorgeous tortoise-shell) were moving too fast (keeping warm) for me to have any chance of capturing them. It's okay though, there'll always be one more dawn, one more day, one day more, and many more mogs!

Streetmog name: Sirius
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Wall & Wandle Meadow undergrowth
Preferred stroke:
Character: Wily wiry
Other: Sirius crossed our path twice. The first time, he fled under a car and then into undergrowth when I tried to get closer for a shot. A while later he appeared again and I was delighted to get my first Streetmog in eight days.

Streetmog name: Caramel
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Fence top/path
Preferred stroke:
Character: Nervy
Other: Caramel was initially sitting atop a wooden fence in the sun, which presented the most perfect streetmog photo opportunity. Desgraciadamente, when I edged closer he jumped down from said fence to the safety of his home's garden path. I managed to grab this rubbish shot by leaning over the side gate. It's a shame that the bright sunlight has washed his ginger features out, as he was a beautiful creature.

Streetmog name: Oreo
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Recycle bins
Preferred stroke: Head stroke
Character: Fun loving explorer
Other: Oreo was the only brave and friendly mog of the day. He trotted over in my direction and, having led me on a merry dance to the recycle bins and back, allowed me to fuss over him for a bit. This actually made my day. Oreo, you made my day, bless you.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Fence off

Three more mogs for our enjoyment. Today was a beautiful, sunny day and I was expecting to see a proliferation of pussies keen to take advantage of the clement conditions, and was surprised that there weren't more about. I'll not sniff at three more new faces though, each one bringing a smile to my tired one. Also, and this is a Streetmogs first (but won't be a common occurrence), the inclusion of a mutt. He's most definitely not a Streetdog, but with a face like that he's certainly worth sharing.

I has a sad

Streetmog name: Charles
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Garden path/doorstep (with intention to be indoors)
Preferred stroke: Under chin tickle
Character: Slightly supercilious but ever so affectionate
Other: Charles was a delightful cat, striking and original in appearance and with a strong character to compliment his fine looks. I first spotted him sitting patiently on his doorstep but he was soon keen to make my acquaintance, trotting down to meet me for some good old fashioned feline fussing. His coat was SO smooth and he felt SO solid; simply an A-grade, top quality mog.

Streetmog names: Laurel & Hardy
Actual name:
Favourite Location: High fence tops
Preferred stroke: 
Character: Wary sceptics
Other: These two were a hoot. The photos tell the story: as I approached, they became less settled and more antsy. Once I got within a few feet, scaredy-cat Laurel was off, whilst the more hardy Hardy held his ground (fence) and continued to stare down at me with those wonderful yellow eyes.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Platypuss platypuss platypuss

Three more streetmogs for the cat-a-log which, after a recent barren spell, pleases. The following three felines were spotted in a lovely, leafy area of Wimbledon, a stone's throw from the famous All England Lawn Tennis Club. It was a dull, grey day but it was so peaceful, with an aromatic wintry air to rouse the senses, and I felt grateful to be out and about in this wonderful part of south west London. Okay, back to the mogs:

Streetmog name: ABC
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Driveway/postman's bag
Preferred stroke: Shoulder scratch
Character: Cuddly best friend
Other: ABC (another black cat) appeared from underneath his owners' smart automobile and approached me with little trepidation, in search of some serious attention. He was a lovely old chap, keen to nuzzle and head-butt, and he showed great interest in the mail bag.


Streetmog name: Dodge 
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Escape from gated compound
Preferred stroke: n/a
Character: Evasive
Other: Dodge was in no mood for being approached, let alone mollycoddled. She was a very beautiful Siamese but, as can be seen by this pathetic excuse for a photograph, was not going to hold still for a shot - once the gate opened, she made a beeline for the road. It was then that I spotted her docked tail; not sure if it's a common thing for this breed, or if I like it. I deliberated over including this one, due to the rubbish photo, but decided that the cat's originality and mystery merited it.

Streetmog name: Amelia Platypuss of Wimbledore
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Bush
Preferred stroke: n/a
Character: Coy
Other: What can be written here to do this surprise meeting and wonderful mog justice? What a gorgeous bundle of tatty mog. Her squiffy eyes, overgrown claw and unkempt mane just made her more adorable. It mattered not that she was a shy old thing who wouldn't let me get too close. Oh, and I think she really does resemble a platypus.

Friday, 4 January 2013

New Year's Dearth

It's not that I haven't been out and about on the streets, and it's not as if the mogs have vanished. Oh they're there alright, but they're being skittish and/or too quick, and generally avoiding the camera. Over the last three days I must have spotted five brand new cats (I've been working in some different areas) but alas, only one made it onto the SD card and subsequently into the blog. Not a great photo, not a great post, but who's to say the mog isn't great? Anyway, they will come, the cats will come...

Streetmog name: Dementor
Actual name:
Favourite Location: Away from postie (safety of fenced back garden)
Preferred stroke: No chance
Character: Ghostly
Other: Naming this chap Dementor is a bit harsh, as I'm sure he's very friendly and loveable, but I wasn't feeling it. Perhaps it was the weight of work on my shoulder, perhaps it was the grey sky...but mostly it was because he took one look at me and fled through a sneaky fence-cat-flap. There are also too many black cats around, so I'm having to get inventive.