Timothy and Babies

[Scene: Bortsworth High Street near the still derelict Woolworths. It is summer in England and the inhabitants of Bortsworth are still giddy from the brief vitamin D boost they got from a sunny day in May.]

Dramatic Personae:

  • Camestros Felapton – raconteur and bon-vivant
  • Timothy the Talking Cat – a rat-auteur and bomb-savant
  • Mrs Brigsly – an inhabitant of Bortsworth and carekeeper of a baby
  • A baby – a baby of unknown provenance in the care of Mr Brisgly

[Timothy] I had to look up ‘bon-vivant’ and the dictionary did not say ‘binges on Netflix and chocolate hob-nobs’
[Camestros] It is more of an attitude than a strictly prescribed lifestyle.
[Timothy] and I’m the one who tells anecdotes in a ‘skilful or amusing way’
[Camestros]…well…
[Timothy] It cleary says “OR”!
[Camestros] Let’s change the subject shall we? I’m already on the sixth line of dialogue, I’m not going back and changing the list of characters now.
[Timothy] Ohhh…is that what that means. I assumed you couldn’t spell “dramatic persons”.
[Camestros] Aha! A timely interruption! There is Mrs Brigsly pushing a pram with a baby in it. Good morning Mrs Brigsly.
[Mrs Brigsly] Fuck off you weirdo and keep that fucking fire hazard away from the baby.
[Timothy] Oh, I don’t think the town has forgiven you for that giant “foam incident” yet Camerashop Fissilechunk.
[Camestros] You mean the ‘incident’ where you doused the town in petrol to scare away the squirrels and I had to drop fire retardant foam on the whole town just to stop the place exploding?
[Timothy] We remember it differently.
[Camestros] Well Mrs Brigsly has angrily walked away so you missed your chance to say hello to the baby.
[Timothy] What kind of baby was it?
[Camestros] Just a regular baby I guess. They all sort of look the same.
[Timothy] I wonder if it was a baby dragon?
[Camestros] No, it was a human baby.
[Timothy] I don’t see how you could know that when it hasn’t had a chance to grow up yet.
[Camestros] Aside from the issue of why Mrs Brigsly would have a baby dragon in a pram or the issue that dragons don’t exist, it was clearly a human baby that looked exactly like a human baby!
[Timothy] But you said all babies look the same!
[Camestros] In context I clearly meant all human babies. Look, cat babies don’t look like tiny humans do they?
[Timothy] Cats don’t have babies.
[Camestros -insistently] Cats have babies.
[Timothy] I’ve never had babies.
[Camestros] Cats in general, as a species, have babies.
[Timothy] Ah, no, that’s where you are wrong. Cats have kittens. Kittens look nothing like babies.
[Camestros] Kittens are cat babies.
[Timothy] That’s ridiculous. A cat baby would be a baby that grows up to be a cat. I’m not ruling out that possibility as a rare occurrence (we live in a strange world after all) but biology, science and common sense says that infant cats are kittens and kitten are not babies. Babies go “wah wah wah” and kittens go “mew mew” to cite just one attested biological facts about babies and kittens.
[Camestros] When I say “cat babies” I’m using the term analogously to mean infant cats i.e. kittens.
[Timothy] Well now you are just shifting the goal posts – which, I might add, is how to use an analogy correctly in a discussion and not in some weird ass way where you suddenly say “babies” when you mean “kittens”.
[Camestros]So let me get this right – you think babies all look the same and that they grow up to be different things and once grown up we know what kind of baby they were?
[Timothy] Oh don’t think I didn’t notice you shifting the argument! Yes, babies are a excitable bundles of potential. One might grow up to be stock broker, another a butterfly, yet another a mighty dragon but at the start they are just babies.
[Camestros] What can I say? You are not just wrong, you are absurdly wrong.
[Timothy] And yet you can’t win this argument.
[Camestros] Indeed not. Also, I think Mrs Brigsly may have organised a mob of angry townsfolk to chase us out of town…
[Timothy] eep!

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20 comments

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    • lenorarose

      Mine haven’t become teenagers yet. One does admittedly occasionally assert he is now a cat, complete with meowing, but he has also asserted he is a dinosaur and a lion and a tiger (And the older brother occasionally asserts his little brother is an astronaut), so I don’t think he has quite proven Timothy’s point about babies growing up into *anything* including cats, quite yet.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Johan P

      As I say to friends and colleagues who have babies keeping them up at night: Don’t worry, in just a few years they’ll be teenagers and they’ll make you sleepless for different reasons.

      Liked by 2 people