Caturday felid trifecta: Soothing purr generator, how to say “cat” in Europe, pussy cat parade

August 29, 2015 • 8:20 am

Having trouble sleeping? This purr generator can help! Click on the screenshot below, and be sure to adjust all the buttons to MAXIMUM for the most vibration. You can also adjust different components, including bass, mids, and treble, and time it so it goes off when you’re asleep.

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You might try testing it on your own cat, and note that there are many other noises you can use for sleeping or what they now call “self care.”

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This map, showing of how Europeans say “cat” (from Maps on the Web), also teaches you some etymology. My theory, which is mine, is that the word “kitty” comes from the Turkish “kedi”.

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Finally, reader Lauren sent me a cat song with a nice note:

Last night I found this video on YouTube. I would say that this was a record I had as a child, except that I still have it. It was one of my favorite songs back then, and one I used to sing to my back-then cat Smaug as I drove him to and from vet appointments.

I have to say that it’s very catchy. It also reminds me of one of my own childhood favorites, “Teddy Bears’ Picnic“—but with felids. (I can still sing the entire song—the Rosemary Clooney version—from memory.) I’ll add the 1932 version of the teddy bear song by Henry Hall and His Orchestra, which, according to Wikipedia, played a big role for the BBC.

The 1932 Henry Hall recording was of especially good quality with a large tonal range. It was used for more than 30 years by BBC audio engineers (up until the early 1960s) to test and calibrate the frequency response of audio equipment.

h/t: Ant, Tom

24 thoughts on “Caturday felid trifecta: Soothing purr generator, how to say “cat” in Europe, pussy cat parade

  1. Noting the Finnish word, interesting – kissa is the infinitive of to piss in Swedish. And I can see somewhat of a relationship between the Finnish & Hungarian. I’d always heard that the relationship between the two wasn’t so much in the words as in the grammatic structure, or something like that.

    1. The word for cat is not really a good comparison base between Finnish and Hungarian, since it has a later foreign origin in both languages and not an ancient Uralic word from the time of the common roots of the two languages.
      A connection between Finnish and Hungarian is not something that obvious as for example the connection between German and English, because the time since the last common ancestor is much longer and the linguistic environment of the two groups was very different for quite a long time. It is more like English vs. Pashtun (both Indo-European languages.
      That said there are a lot of relationship on the level of words, it just usually not very obvious without having knowledge about the histories (various sound shifts)of these languages.

  2. Those are cool sound generators. I especially like the Jungle Sounds, and now have it playing, with the insects, frogs, and mystery birds cranked up.

    1. and mystery birds cranked up.

      I have a mantal image of you being carried away to feed the chicks of some cryptozoological overgrown cassowary which has been taking a little too much methamphetamine (i.e. is “cranked-up,” if I have my drug slang up to date).

  3. Regarding the map, the mutated form of the Welsh word for cat is, indeed, “gath” but the actual Welsh word for cat is “cath” (hard c, long a, “k-AA-th”). It would, like many nouns, undergo a mutation when spoken or written as part of a sentence e.g. “Clywsom y gath yn canu crwndi.” (We heard the cat purring.)

    The cat song reminded me of the nursery rhyme my father would often declaim to our cat:

    Pwsi Meri Mew
    Lle collaist di dy flew?
    “Wrth gario tan
    I Modryb Sian
    Trwy’r eira mawr a rhew.”

    Mary Meeow Puss
    Where did you lose your fur?
    “When I carried fire
    To Aunty Sian
    Through the deep snow and ice.”

  4. I’m not into moggies myself but good to hear Henry Hall’s Teddy Bears Picnic again. It used to be our standard BBC test record for the 78 rpm grams. Esoteric…

  5. And now I have the teddy bears’ picnic stuck in my head….

    If Romanian is a Romance language, how come their word for cat is so different than the others, and so different even from its non-Romance neighbors?

  6. Love the BBC version. I’ve probably posted before (last time we discussed Teddy Bears’ Picnic) that my kids wondered why it was “watch them, catch them underwears…”, “unawares” not being a much-used word these days;-)

  7. Funny that the Finnish word for cat is “kissa,” as “kiss” is the Swedish word for “to piss,” which is what one of my cats loves to do in the most inconvenient places.

    1. You should bring the inconvenient incontinence to the immediate attention of your veterinarian, as it’s not normal and most commonly a sign of some sort of illness or other discomfort — with a number of the possibilities being quite dire.

      And even when there aren’t any health or psychological concerns — such as if it’s the cat marking territory — it’s still something that can be curtailed and in a way that will make life for everybody, especially the cat but also you, much more pleasant.

      b&

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