Gentle moos from round the globe

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Essays  ·  Poetry  ·  Comedy  ·  Art  ·  Video summer 2021
Whither Moocat?

May 2002, 

· Sitting with Mama
· Maria
· Nine Crossings
· Mama and Her

· Fallopian Chron IV
· Why I Toast, I
· Why I Toast, II
· Why I Toast, III
· Scooter/Dot-Com
· Fallopian Chron II
· Fallopian Chron III
· Strange Bedfellow
· Almost Equal
· A Difficult Day
· Phantom Lover:
    Ode to
    Leslie Cheung

· I Am Salad
· Fallopian Chron I
· Taiwanglish
· Childhood's End
· Psychic Friends
· Life in the
    Time of SARS

· Waiting for
      the Goddess

· Roswell My Eye
· Catisfaction
· My Laramie Project
· Stopping on the
    Street for
    Coltrane: A Real
    Latter Day Saint

· Whither Moocat?
· Happy Palindrome!
· Happy Tiger
· Tourist for a Day
· Geography
    as Destiny

· "Bastards"
· Watching the
    Pentagon Burn

· Communing with

· Milk
· Infinity
· Emailing the Dead
· Broken Water
· Sand Shark
· Grandma Said
· Golden Days
· Americat
· Moe Howard on the
Death of His Brother,

· Flashpoems
· Minyan
· Inside Scoop
· Nativity
· I Ask My Mother
To Sing

· Absence of Colours
· Island Logic
· Peepshow Kleenex
· Allen Ginsberg
Forgives Ezra Pound
on Behalf of the Jews

· Lacing Your Shoes:
Haiku & the Everyday

· Four Haiku
· Smoking Haiku
· Geary & Jones,
Monday, 8:23 a.m.

· The Keeper
· december 13, 2001
· Memento Mori
· Football's Birthday
· The Edward Gorey

· Arrival
· Victim o'

· The Origin of
Teeth and Bones

· Questions for
Martins Ferry,

· This Is Just
To Tell You

· Not-Cat (& whatnot)
· To My Unmet Wife

· Englishhua
· Dave for Pope
· Papa Loves Mambo
· A Culture Report

· The Louisiana
A Special Radio X
Historical Docudrama

· Krawkawkaw Gives
a Little

· Meet Dr. Klaww
· Letters to Dr. Klaww
· Letter from the
Hall of Justice

· An Invitation
to be Keynote

· More

All Things

· Gajandra Meets
    the Scatoman

· Gajandra and
    the Curse of the
    Six Monkeys

· Gajandra and the
    Eating Lesson

· A Moment of

· Gajandra and the
    Great Rumble

· Gajandra and the
    Problem with

· Mohamed Tahdaini
· John Guillory
· Berkeley Pier
· Bruce Dene
· Death of The Bayou
· Taiwan Food Vendors
· John Freeman
· Robin Liu
· Hector
· Dave's Corner
· Zuni Kachinas

· Mainland Murmurs
· Next to Heaven
  · Episode #8

  · Episode #16
· Crosswords Brunch


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I used to happily get questioned on the street, when people saw my license plate, "What's a Moocat?" If I had time, I'd explain, "that's a cat that's not sure if he's a cat or a cow." If I didn't have time, or if I needed to be more serious, I'd say, "Oh, it's a character from a song." Now I more often am asked when people first see my email address or, of course, this website.

Well now it's time the truth be known. Some time back in 1988 or so, I was feeling especially happy for some reason in my then-home of Riverdale, Maryland, and this song sprang into my mind more or less fully-formed, and I sang it aloud:

Moocat BeetleWell, the name stuck, and its legend grew. When I bought my first-ever automobile in 1991, I got a personalized license plate and named my new 1973 VW Beetle, "MOOCAT." I was gratified to notice that in high-strung, professionally politicized, overly serious Washington, DC, where I lived for 8 years, my MOOCAT plate made people smile.

Years later, when I was traveling the world and staying in Chiang-mai, Thailand, I decided to launch a Web literary magazine. This was 1996, and it was still a not-too-common endeavour. I would call it, "Moocat Unbleached." Although it took me 5 years to finally get to it, this site is the direct descendant of that effort. I had even made some graphics for it, out in the tropical low-tech latitudes, using the most rudimentary tools (Windows 3.1 "MS Paint" applet and a DOS freeware program called, I think, "Graphics Workshop").

moocat unbleached banner

In 1998, when I first decided to go ahead and take the leap and buy a domain name for my 'moocat' idea, I consciously chose to buy "" and NOT "," since I wanted to make it clear that my site was about literature and art and ideas, not about commerce. Several years later, after I had formed a limited liability company for myself, should I ever undertake Web development work on an independent-contractor basis, I thought to go ahead and register the ".com" version, since my company name was "Moocat Internet Consulting, LLC." To my surprise, "" was now taken! And so was ""! The .org site seems to be a Web gallery for the work of photographer R. Samuel Klatchko. I have no idea how he came upon the name "moocat."

The .com site was the site of a British drinking/social group called The Moocats (which domain is no longer up)." I actually wrote to them, offering to swap the domain, "", which I had acquired and which actually seemed to suit their group's real name better than "," in exchange for "", but they never answered my repeated emails. Even though I had a legal entity with the name "moocat" prior to their purchase of the domain name "", under the rules of domain name dispute-resolution, I'd have no chance of winning.

So I've settled with

The moocat ASCII graphic goes back almost as far as the name 'moocat'. I was created by David Saia in 1993! I first discovered the Internet as a real venue in 1993, after my breakup with Michelle and after I began exploring Gay avenues to happiness. Through a local Gay paper I had heard of a Gay BBS called "GLIB," Gay and Lesbian Information Bureau (which no longer exists as far as I can tell). Since I had made the audacious purchase of a then state-of-the-art 28.8 baud modem, I was able to easily access GLIB with my then-not-too-out-of-date 386 PC, which I had bought from a friend. I discovered and was immediately consumed by the "Chat" feature, which exposed me to an entirely new form of communication. I choose the handle "moocat" of course, and came up with the moocat graphic as part of my ASCII signature.

Which, I suppose, brings us up to date. Yes, the lyrics to the song are a bit disturbingly psychological and strangely dark for a song that sounds like a child's tune. In my most candid moments I'll speculate that the "Am I a cat or a cow right now?" theme is an expression of the inherent internal conflict associated with the Western concept of 'bisexuality.' But then again, a writer who deconstructs his own work has a fool for a... deconstructor.


— David Saia

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