Wordless Wednesday: Empty

The empty beanbag chair, underneath the Moog Synthesizers

Dollar Days, Blackstar, and Luna

David Bowie, Blackstar

A lot has already been written about David Bowie’s final album Blackstar. But it seems particularly poignant in a personal way at this moment in my life.

I should start by saying it’s a great album. I would even assert that it was his best since the classic albums of the 1970s. it mixes complex and dark elements with some catchy hooks like on Low. The jazz and fusion elements on Blackstar, which features a band led by saxophonist Donny McCaslin, also take me back to another of my favorites, Station to Station, with its funky vibe. Indeed, some of the initial responses to the album that focused on his use of a jazz band seemed to leave out the connection to his funky bands of the mid 1970s. But coming back to the present moment, it’s the song “Dollar Days” on Blackstar that seems to stand out the moment. It is melancholy and its verses feature ballad-like chord structure, descending root notes resolving back on itself. The chorus has a simultaneously anxious and soaring quality. And the lyrics seem to be self-reflective and prescient of his coming death just two days after the album’s release, especially when coupled with the next track “I Can’t Give Everything Away.”

Cash girls suffer me, I’ve got no enemies
I’m walking down
It’s nothing to meet
It’s nothing to see
If I’ll never see the English evergreens I’m running to
It’s nothing to meet
It’s nothing to see

I’m dying too
Push their backs against the grain
And fool them all again and again
I’m trying to
We bitches tear our magazines
Those oligarchs with foaming mouths come now and then
Can’t believe I just run second, now I’m forgetting you
I’m trying to
I’m dying too

Dollar days ’til final checks, honest scratching tails, the necks, I’m falling down
It’s nothing to meet
It’s nothing to see
If I’ll never see the English evergreens I’m running to
It’s nothing to meet
It’s nothing to see

I’m dying too
Push their backs against the grain
And fool them all again and again
I’m trying to
It’s all gone wrong for on and on
The bitter nerve is never enough, I’m falling down
Don’t believe in just one second round for getting you
I’m trying to
I’m dying too

Specifically, that line “If I’ll never see the English evergreens I’m running to” hits home. Bowie died in New York and had probably not seen the English evergreens in a while, and was aware that he likely wouldn’t. One part of Luna’s decline that has affected me greatly is the realization that we won’t experience some of our favorite things together anymore. Some have already gone, such as playing with toys, clamoring for favorite treats, and running up and down the stairs at night. I have no way of imagining what this feels like to her, but it can’t be good. And that, too, is a painful realization. Sadly, cats don’t have the ability to express their feelings in words, let alone with the lyricism and eloquence of David Bowie. The sharing of his thoughts about his mortality is one of the gifts in Blackstar, along with the music itself.

Luna’s continued decline has good days and bad, and we are spending as much time together as we can, including sitting on the floor and listening to music, cuddling and purring.

Weekend Cat Blogging 301: A Sad Day

March 11 was a sad day.

It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our friend Mickey.

As mentioned earlier this week, he fell very ill and passed away on Friday. He (through his mom) first visited us in late 2007, and they have been regulars on our site ever since, as likely to comment on experimental music shows and photography as Luna’s feline antics. And in turn, we enjoyed getting to know them better through their site. Our thoughts go out to Mom Nancy and the rest of the family today.


We have been closely following the tragic events in Japan after the earthquake and tsunami. Images such as these are heartbreaking, and our thoughts are with the people of Japan right now. While every year brings multiple huge disasters, when it happens somewhere you have visited or affects people you know, it hits harder.

Our friends at Cats of Wildcat Woods have compiled a list of relief organizations. The Red Cross is always a good place to start, and now you can donate via text messages.

There is no information currently on Tashirojima, or “Cat Island”, which is off the eastern coast of Japan in Miyagi Prefecture, near epicenter of the earthquake and tsunami, but the fear is that the island was lost.


Weekend Cat Blogging #301 is hosted by Pam at Sidewalk Shoes.

The Carnival of the Cats will be up this Sunday at Two Little Cavaliers.

And the Friday Ark is at the modulator.

Weekend Cat Blogging #272: Sadness

It was a sad week for many of our cat friends and their families. This past Wednesday saw no fewer that four announcements on the Cat Blogosphere of regular contributors who had passed away. Anyone who has studied probability and statistics knows that such clustering is normal behavior for random events, but one still notices it and can be affected by it.

And then late in the day we received some sad news from our friend Vivi Pedgraglio that DJ Kikovas had passed away.

This was very sad news, and our thoughts are with Vivi this weekend. We often featured DJ Kikovas on CatSynth. And the symmetry of our exchanges was fun, the white boy cat playing electronic music in the studio in Argentina and the black girl cat in the U.S. who is surrounded by electronic music. He will be missed.

Among the cats whose passing was announced on Wednesday was Luxor, an elegant white cat whose site we followed. Our thoughts are with his family as well.


It is a dreary overcast morning, after a week that in addition to the sad news has been quite tiring. So we rest.

[click to enlarge image]

I looked at those photo of Luna resting on the bed linens – this has been her favored resting place again over the last few weeks – and thought about how often I have seen her curled up there over the years. Here is a photo of her in the same position in 2007, at our former home in Santa Cruz.

So many things stay the same, but the same time life is always moving forward. That is both a happy and sad thing.


Weekend Cat Blogging #272 is hosted by Samantha and Clementine at Life from a Cat’s Perspective.

The Carnival of the Cats will be hosted by Nikita and Elvira (who is hosting for the first time this week) at Meowsings of an Opinionated Pussycat.  They also have a tribute to the cats who past away this week.

And the Friday Ark is at the modulator.

Weekend Cat Blogging and more: A beautiful and sad weekend

It's been a weekend of contradictions, of warmth and fun and rest and work and excitement and fear and sadness.

We lost a friend and former colleague this past week. But we also got to see friends we haven't seen in quite a while. We are still saddened and worried at frightened for our feline friends caught in a terrible fire (UPDATE: we just heard that they are alive!). But we continue to settle into our own home, and things are taking shape.

And it's been warm and sunny hear at CatSynth HQ, perhaps the best weekend since we moved to the city. And there is so much to do, both fun and work, but at the same time we just want to lie around, and enjoy a little of what's important.

We have watched our friends, locally and online, deal with much sadness and tragedy over the past few months. For us, there is an exciting but anxious new life beginning.

Sometimes it's hard to write. But here we are.


A special edition of Weekend Cat Blogging will be jointly hosted by A Byootaful Life, HotMBC and Kashim and Othello at the Cat Blogopshere.

Kashim and Othello are pulling double-duty, actually, as they are also hosting Bad Kitty Cats Festival of Chaos.

The Carnival of the Cats will be hosted today by Mr. Tigger at M-Cats Club.

And of course the Friday Ark is at modulator.