Copyright 2002 by Jon Bondy, All Rights Reserved.

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Jon Bondy,


My friend, Al, had a yellow cat a while back.  At the time that I met the cat, he was known as “The GCR”, short for The Great Cat Ronald. Ronald was not a bad cat, but his history was more exciting than he could ever have been. When he was not out in the fields, engaged in “S&P work” (stalking and pouncing), he was sleeping or waiting patiently by his food dish.

The GCR started out life as a pet for Al’s children, and one of his daughters named him Rainbow out of some romantic feeling.  As Rainbow grew up,  Al’s knowledge of German caused Rainbow’s name to mutate in a strange way. “Rainbow” in German is “Regenbogen”, and, so, Rainbow’s name became “Regenbogen” around the house.  As Ronald Reagan became more famous, politically, in California, the cat became known as Ronald Ray Gun Bogen.  Eventually this was shorted to Ronald.  Such was life with Al: life was fun, words were fun, and cat names were to be played with, honored in ways that often only made sense to Al.

Al had great aspirations for The GCR, and Ronald was re-named The Great Cat Ronald in honor of these aspirations.  IT was Al’s plan that, were he able to teach The GCR how to speak German, that feat would catapult (sorry) the two of them into the limelight and change their lives. Al had visions of The GCR addressing the Nobel Committee as he (The GCR) accepted the Nobel Prize for this achievement.

Accordingly, Al set out to teach The GCR German.  Each time The GCR received its food, Al would lecture The GCR about the benefits of learning German.  Among these benefits was the fact that the Nobel Prize was awarded in Sweden, and there were lots of fish in Sweden.  Al would solemnly intone “Guten Abend, meine Damen und Herren” to The GCR, who stared blankly up at Al and the dish of cat food.  The food would then be duly placed on the floor, right in front of the picture of the Nobel Prize that Al had located and taped to the wall in front of the cat food bowl.  Al figured that this would help The GCR focus on his intended destiny, perhaps muttering in German as he ate his cat food.

Al was a man who lived his life with whimsy as a companion, a trait which endeared him to all who know him, The GCR included.