Et l’Oscar va à …

What movies or TV series have you watched more than 5 times?

I can think of one show in particular that I have seen countless times, although I still haven’t figured out whether it’s a film on repeat, a horror-themed Groundhog Day-style soap opera, or something Trumanesque whose participants don’t know that they’re part of a reality show and you’re torn between laughing at them and feeling really sorry for them.

I think its name is “Qu’est-ce qui se passe?” and it stars Louis Catorze, playing the part of a cat who is outraged or alarmed about something. His skills at portraying this, when in actual fact there is nothing whatsoever the matter, are quite extraordinary.

The pilot series aired in 2014 and, nine years on, it is still running. The content is very much the same as it was at the beginning, but it is clear to see that the leading actor has evolved; whereas, originally, there was just screaming – well, I say “just” screaming as if that were unworthy of note, but we all know that his voice is enough to make us tear at our own ears with our fingernails – but further dramatic techniques that he has developed over the years include, although are not limited to, creepy staring, whining and 3am parkour.

“Qu’est-ce qui se passe?” is aired multiple times each day and night, whether or not we want to see/hear it. And Catorze gives us the full Day-Lewis every time, repeatedly convincing us pathetic humans that something really is amiss, irrespective of how many times we have been duped in the past. Sometimes this has led to vet visits, only to find out that there’s absolutely jacques merde wrong with him.

This show is worthy of many Academy Awards, aside from Best Actor in a Leading Role: it deserves Best Director, Best Foreign Language Film (subtitles not available) and Best Sound Mixing, to name but a few. If you haven’t seen it, hopefully Catorze’s misadventures in Le Blog will bring the experience alive and help you to feel as if you have. You’re welcome.

Method acting.

Faire flotter le drapeau bleu

Where would you go on a shopping spree?

Does it count if the spree wasn’t supposed to be a spree? If so, Louis Catorze would – and did – go to, erm, Kitbag, the sports equipment supplier.

We had a Code Bleu situation recently, when Boots – usurper stepbrother of Louis Catorze’s frère-from-another-mère, Antoine – lost his collar again. Catorze visited the Kitbag site and bought three new collars which bore the name of Boots’ favourite football team. However, the delivery didn’t arrive.

Catorze is usually very firmly Team Antoine, since Antoine is a fellow Chat Noir. However, Boots has a shady past and his collar performs the function of an electronic tag, with the bell informing his household of his whereabouts. So, whilst Catorze might appear to be betraying the cause, in actual fact he is doing his frérot a service. And the fact that Boots supports Chelsea gives a clear indication of the kind of cat he is and why he needs a tag.

Très chic.

Because Boots has previous when it comes to losing collars, his mamma has a stash of them in various snazzy styles. However, when she picked one from her supply and tried to put it on Boots, it wouldn’t fully open. Now, ALL collars open … don’t they? Anyone designing a cat collar that requires pulling down over the head, surely can’t ever have seen a cat before?

Poor Cat Mamma tried it anyway, but the spanner in the works was Boots’ fat head (see below). And, since Catorze’s gift had gone missing, this meant that miscreant Boots was collarless and on the rampage. This simply would not do.

Nope – not gonna happen.

I contacted Kitbag to explain the situation and received a lovely reply from Bailey, who said, “I can certainly understand.”

Excusez-moi? So … Kitbag are FAMILIAR with queries regarding fat-headed, Chelsea-supporting cats and their missing collars?

Further investigation revealed that the failed delivery was due to, erm, user error. The collars had been sent to entirely the wrong post code, and I don’t just mean a couple of letters/numbers off; I mean that, of the six characters required, four were wrong. I shamefacedly confessed this to Bailey, who informed me that it would not be possible to redirect or cancel the order.

Catorze then placed a second order and, happily, Boots now has his Chelsea collars, so all is well in his world. The original order, I imagine, will keep going to the made-up post code (which is actually a real post code, just not the one where Boots lives) until someone accepts it.

If you live in the CR0 area, look out for random cats wearing Chelsea collars. None of them will be Boots, since he doesn’t live there, but tant pis.

EDIT: By some miracle, the lost delivery somehow made it to Boots despite the wrong post code, so he now has SIX Chelsea collars. Photographing him in one is something of a challenge as his fluff splays out and covers it, so his mamma needs two hands to separate the fluff, and a third to take the picture:

There really is a collar under there somewhere.
Snoozing happily whilst his mamma manhandles him.
Smart boy.

Dis mon nom

What is your middle name? Does it carry any special meaning/significance?

Louis Catorze doesn’t have a middle name. To be honest, his full title – Sa Majesté Louis Catorze, Le Roi Soleil – is already long enough. If we were to do as our parents did and call our kid by his full name to tell him off, by the time we got to the end, we would have forgotten why he was in trouble (and given him enough time to make a swift getaway).

Outwardly, Catorze is more Prince of Darkness than Sun King. However, the human Sun King’s middle name was Dieudonné, meaning “gift of God”, which is very appropriate as that’s exactly what Catorze thinks he is. If he were to choose his own middle name, I’m pretty sure he would choose that.

Most people assume that we named him Louis, but he was already called that when he came to us. The lady who found him had thought he was a girl and named him Louise (her own middle name), and the rescue subsequently changed it to Louis. We added the “Catorze” just to be funny, and this has since led to a number of derivatives such as Le Roi, Seigneur (technically a demotion from a royal title but he doesn’t appear to have noticed) and Sa Maj. For a while I even referred to him as LXIV when writing about him online, just because it was short. However, I am not good with numbers, and discovering that LXIV was Roman for sixty-four just made things confusing.

Cat Daddy also has multiple different names for Catorze. None of them are repeatable here (nor anywhere, come to think of it), but here is a hint of the very worst one (yes, THAT one).

He hears us. He’ll come when he’s good and ready.

Croyez-vous au destin?

The new WordPress Jetpack app gives a new prompt every day, to inspire anyone who might be in the midst of a creative dearth. Obviously I don’t need it because Louis Catorze’s misadventures always give me plenty of content, but the prompts are, nevertheless, food for thought; not only do I think about how I would respond, but I also consider how I might give each one a Catorzian feel.

Occasionally I even wonder how the little sod would answer them, although they would largely involve merde and the non-giving of it.

Last week, one of the prompts was as follows:

Do you believe in fate/destiny?

In general, maybe. But, when it comes to cats and how they come to be in our lives, most likely.

Obviously timing plays its part regarding which ones come our way, because much depends upon when the last cat leaves us, when we feel ready to start looking for the next, and which ones happen to be available when we do look. But, when the new one starts doing things that the previous one did, you start to wonder whether each might somehow be responsible for sending us the next.

I like to think that Luther enjoyed his time with us so much that he saw this sickly fellow Chat Noir and decided, “This cat deserves some good people”. However, it’s far more likely that he knew what a shite Catorze was, and thought, “Right … this will be funny!”

Here they are, pictured several months apart, sitting in our old house on the same step, in the same pose:

Luther: “Just hold still and let them take a photo. That’s it. Now watch their faces!”