Q: Are the characters in your blog real?
A: Yes, all of them. However, I have gone to some lengths to keep their true identities private. Whilst it would be jolly good fun to reveal their true names and statuses (relative to me) there would, I am quite sure, be some legal ramifications in dropping them in the soup. I choose to bide my time on that one. There have also been some questions regarding the meanings of some of the epithets used; again I am wary of giving too much away, however I see some scope for more expansive description here. Some are of course self-explanatory in nature: ‘Sorebones’, ‘Fecklessa’ and ‘The Fat Academic’ for example are, I hope, pretty obvious. ‘Sister Dunlop’s’ cognomen is perhaps a little more obscure; here I tried to convey a little of her easy latitudes toward coition and her general degree of amorality – ‘Dunlop’ being synonymous (at least in the UK) with bicycle. To go further and include divisiveness and xenophobia would only lead to an ungainly, though more accurate, description. When all is said and done, as long as ‘they’ know to whom I am referring, my job is done.
Q. Are the characters members of your family?
A. Some are some aren’t, those that aren’t used to be. All are immediately antecedent, sibling or ‘ex’ in nature. All I will say at this point is that I am a great admirer of Roth’s ‘I married a Communist’ – and in particular Linda Grant’s thesis of the novel (“an angry, bitter, resentful mess by a man who might have taken another course.”)
Q. Why do you persist in denigrating the characters in your posts?
A. I don’t see it as denigration. It’s my therapy. I have tried to portray a group of people [characters] who have effectively cut me and others that are close to me from their lives. I am in exile. I write for my sanity and as a lone voice against those who act in collusion against me. I’ve recently started using Pynchon’s muted trumpet as a symbol for some of my posts. It’s not really an homage to 49 at all but I find the emblem a rather poignant metaphor in symbolising my own chosen method of communicating my feelings.
Q. What is the significance of SitOnTheCat?
A. None worthy of reporting. I was simply looking for an abstract and yet interesting sounding name. I’ve had only positive feedback so far; people have been pretty complimentary in this respect.
Q. Are there hidden messages in your posts?
A. There are and there are not. By that I mean there are some posts like ‘Russian Doll Story’ in which I make use of very specific and clearly described encryption but in other places I employ less obvious cryptic form. I also make extensive use of anagrams (not in character names) to impart some important statements.
Q. What is the W.A.S.T.E acronym and why is it relevant?
A. I refer you to my third answer – it’s that Pynchon thing again. That said, “Long live the Trystero.”
Q. It is quite easy to establish who you are. Why then do you use ‘SitOnTheCat’ as a pseudonym?
A. I don’t really care about shielding my identity. I have two audiences, one very small and specific and the other to whom I now type these answers. The former already know who I am, the latter probably don’t care. Anyhow – it’s nice to sit in the shadow of my cat.