Terror Island
"some photos of chess pieces don't want to buy groceries?"
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Strip #191 — Friday, August 31, 2007
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Notes, Thoughts, &c.

Ben's Notes

I've been kind of hesitant to mention this here, since Lewis and I haven't yet worked out what it means in terms of Terror Island.

Ray passed away last week. He was 14, which is old for a cat, and I'd known this might be coming, since he was pretty sick lately. It still managed to feel sudden, though.

When I was really young, Ray used to sleep on the foot of my bed, attacking my feet if they moved too much. He mellowed out over the years, though. By the time I was back from college, he was pretty much never violent toward humans, provided you don't count trying to trip my dad down the stairs. (Fortunately, he didn't try very hard.)

He was the sort of cat who'd pretend to be lazy just to get attention. Left on his own, he'd jump up to the counter to drink from the sink, but if anyone was around, he would stand below and stare at you pleadingly until you helped him up. He even did that for going up the stairs. He'd sit at the bottom until someone walked up, and then he'd follow alongside, as though he didn't want to travel without an escort.

He loved to be in the bathroom when people were showering. He'd wait on the rim between the two parts of the shower curtain, and as you were getting out, he'd jump down into the bathtub and lap up the water while it drained. Apparently it tasted better that way. Even at his sink, he liked it best when the faucet was running, and would often stick his head under it.

He had some territory disputes with our dog, Comet, who kept trying to get at his food. I remember walking in on them just a couple months ago, when Comet was stretching for his food bowl (which we'd tried to place out of her reach), and Ray was standing next to it, back arched, swatting his paw back and forth at her face to drive her away.

He was amazingly cooperative with his role as Omicron. After the first couple times I photographed him for it, he started to catch on to the process. Obviously he didn't have any understanding of the webcomic or plot, or even what my camera is, but he got that he'd receive attention if he sat around while I put gamepieces next to him. I could get him to look in a particular direction on cue, have him lie down in the spot where a scene needed to take place, sometimes even persuade him to do some varied facial expressions, which the strip is otherwise pretty short on. It definitely took more time than posing any of the other characters, but it was also much more fun, I think for both of us.

I realize this is a long and rambling cat post, but I really needed to get it out somewhere. Thanks for your patience.

Lewis's Notes

Stephen is going soft. I would have said any emblem with more detail than the Bangladeshi flag is "pushing it."


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