May 6, 1964
Jocie Brooke here reporting from Hollyhill, Kentucky. Things have been really hopping around here since Cat showed up. I’m beginning to believe he is from Jupiter the way Wes says. Zella says she doesn’t care where he’s from as long as he stays away from her and for heaven’s sake, we’re a newspaper. We deal in words so surely we can come up with a better name than Cat for the cat.
I don’t agree with Zella about much, but I have to agree about that. Cat does need a name. So I took a poll of names at the newspaper. Wes says he thinks Cat is a boy cat, but he could be wrong. Not so easy to tell with cats. Zella heard him saying that and said of course the cat was a boy. Anything that irritating definitely had to be male. Cat likes to sleep in her chair, leaving his hair behind to get all over Zella’s clothes. And at least once every day, he pounces at her toes under the desk when she’s typing. I don’t know if you can train a cat, but if you can, Wes has been busy with Cat.
We got some great name suggestions from our readers. Here’s the names suggested. Gabby Hart, Holly, Asterisk (Aster for short), Smudge, Paige, Letters, Deadline, Inky, Typo, Byline, and Redspot. Wes says Holly and Paige are too nice names for Cat. I say Deadline and Byline are too hard to say. Here, Deadline, kitty. You have to try names out, you know.
Wes likes Redspot. That’s not so easy to say when we’re calling Cat, but you’ve got to remember Wes thinks Cat has Jupiter roots. It seems this giant storm has been raging up on Jupiter for hundreds of years and astronomers here see it as a great red spot they also call “The Eye of Jupiter” because of its shape. Wes says it’s more than a spot to Jupiterians and that old Mr. Jupiter has been trying to figure out what to do about it forever. It’s like a enormous hurricane covering a space as big as earth. Wow!
So while I really like Smudge and Typo and all the others, Redspot it is. Wes is the one who invited Cat inside, and he wanted a Jupiter name. Turns out we named him well. You have probably been wondering about that snake picture. Spring has come to Hollyhill and with the warm sunshine, certain slithery creatures start waking up. I don’t much like snakes, but compared to how Zella feels about them, they could be my pets. Zella is terrified of snakes. Terrified.
She went out the back door last week. Who knows why? But when she looked up at the bushes running along the fence there, she was nose to nose with this fine snake. She started screaming and just stood there like she couldn’t move. I don’t know why she didn’t run away. It was like she was afraid the snake was going to jump on her. Snakes don’t jump, do they? But I guess it could have fallen on her. It definitely was hissing at her with its tongue out. Then Cat, I mean Redspot, stormed out of the press room door, and leaped up on the fence to snarl at the snake. That plus Zella’s screeching convinced the poor snake he wasn’t in friendly territory. He beat a hasty retreat.
The next day, Redspot was playing with a catnip toy in the press room. Zella wouldn’t admit buying it, but who else? I