Boo the Cat gets called anything but her name. After we adopted her from the pet rescue center on Misawa Air Base, we named her Chessie and called her that for, oh, maybe a couple of weeks. Seemed like a good name at the time. But as she became more comfortable with us, she started playing games, and her favorite for a while was hide-and-seek. Poking her head out from around a corner or behind a door, she would make the strangled, gurgling sound she makes instead of meowing, and we would answer, “Boo!” because what else are you going to say when someone does that? And gradually, or not really so gradually I suppose, everyone came to call her Boo. It became so solidly established as her real name that, years ago, we stopped telling people her name is Chessie; now we just say she’s Boo.

But that’s not her only name. Depending on the situation, she’s also called: Boo-ness, because she’s kind of a princess; Boo-pants, because I have no freaking idea; and peanut-peanut, because My Darling B likes the sound of it, I guess. And those are just the ones I can think of right off the top of my head. Boo is apparently the cat of a thousand names.

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