Words for Baxter


A while ago I wrote a little something for Sylvie. I told Baxter it wasn’t a case of favouritism, but I still felt a bit bad. It’s just that he’s a much tougher subject to master. More nuanced. More shades of grey, both inside and out. Less fluffy and flirtatious and all-out-in-the-open.

Even in photos he worms away so all I’m left with is a faceless blur of tabby. And meanwhile I have veritable reels of cutesy Sylvie photos, posed just so, like a teddy bear in cat form. Ach, but that’s enough about Sylvie. There she goes again, taking over.

I said last night (out of Baxter’s earshot – I’m not that unkind) that you’d need to raise Samuel Beckett  or Albert Camus from their graves to get a decent account of the intricate inner workings of our half aloof, half desperately needy only boy cat.

Some days he is one way, other days another. He is a sort of feline chameleon. I couldn’t possibly capture the essence of him.

[And speaking of essence, that reminds me of my unsuccessful and short-lived foray into philosophy in my first year of university. I can’t remember exactly how it came to pass, but basically I dropped out in anger, having been told that my dog didn’t have a soul. But Pavlova was one of the most soulful people I knew!]

So anyway. In an attempt at in some way conveying the enigma that is Baxter Robinson Sweetman, I’ve come up with some words for Baxter, which go a little bit like this. (And even these don’t do it.)

smooch addicted, rain catcher, pensive, bunny pawed, possum pelted, moochy existentialist, expectant, particular, outsized-limbed gangler, pensive, demanding, spongy contortionist, diesel engine hearted, stripy-browed loner, proud but nervous, fence-sitting, attenuated, love-hungry, lean & dense, intense, white-socked, insistent, sleep-twitchy, intermittently hygienic, pale-bellied, wary, faux Burberry-collared, food bowl patrolling, arrogantly skittish

And there we have him (or don’t).


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