Explaining my Avatar

Hodge The Cat

The above avatar is a cartoon drawn by the famous crikey.com.au’s Firstdogonthemoon. (twitter: @firstdogonmoon)

My request was “a black cat with glasses”. Firstdog stated that a black cat with glasses was a tough ask, but we can see the excellent result.

The black cat, Hodge the Cat, was one of Samuel Johnson‘s cat. Samuel was a mercurial man of letters from the 18th Century, having created A Dictionary of the English Language. Hodge the Cat immortalized in a characteristically whimsical passage in James Boswell‘s Life of Johnson:

Nor would it be just, under this head, to omit the fondness which he shewed for animals which he had taken under his protection. I never shall forget the indulgence with which he treated Hodge, his cat: for whom he himself used to go out and buy oysters, lest the servants having that trouble should take a dislike to the poor creature. I am, unluckily, one of those who have an antipathy to a cat, so that I am uneasy when in the room with one; and I own, I frequently suffered a good deal from the presence of this same Hodge. I recollect him one day scrambling up Dr. Johnson’s breast, apparently with much satisfaction, while my friend smiling and half-whistling, rubbed down his back, and pulled him by the tail; and when I observed he was a fine cat, saying, ‘Why yes, Sir, but I have had cats whom I liked better than this;’ and then as if perceiving Hodge to be out of countenance, adding, ‘but he is a very fine cat, a very fine cat indeed.’

Glasses, for studiousness and learnedness; both to which I aspire. Black cat to describe my moods, and against a grey background to symbolise the shades of greyness in the world. A cat as obviously, I am a cat person.

Hodge the Cat symbolises me. Thanks First Dog!

My second favourite albeit random avatar is Mr Alien Puritan as taken by Delic8genius. There is a story here, but that is for another day.

crazy hat guy