CMXtraneous: Music

Right on the edge of useful

Our New Cat: A Royal Bengal Tiger

Posted Thursday, April 14, 2005 7:19:30 AM by Sheri German

Sheri German

After years of playing the violin, our daughter decided she wanted to learn the cello. Adventure-bound, we loaded up the car one day with my husband, son (who needed a new viola chin rest), daughter, and two of her fellow string player friends.

Ray Hardy is our Strings guy. I've known him for years, and we have spent many hours together working on his Mac (many musicians love the Mac.) On this particular day, however, we were there for "business." Ray was ready with several cellos in our price range. With our large audience gathered around, Ray took out the first cello and played a scale. No Bach Cello Suite played by Yo-Yo Ma was every more attentively listened to.

And so it went, as Ray demoed cellos with his beautiful, Peabody-graduate vibrato. Finally he went in the back room and pulled out a last cello. All ears leaned towards the "C" string as its low growl began a two-octave scale. Such primal beauty! No mating call was ever more seductive.

This was the one. It was a little more expensive, but what is money for anyway?

And so it came to be that another cat came into our house that already holds a population of Birman, Siamese, and Ragdoll. This, a Royal Bengal Tiger of cats, low "C" growling and announcing its supremacy over the others, had to have a name too. We dubbed him "Richard Parker" after the tiger in Yann Martel's book "Life of Pi."

And just as a character in the book claimed of its story, "it might make you believe in God," so too does this cello invite the wonder of the universe through sound.

Category tags: Music