Tip of the Tail of James's Mom's Cat "Tweak"
Tip of the Tail of James’s Mom’s Cat “Tweak” Tail. Bone, skin and fur of domestic cat (American, mixed breed). Fur black in color. Dehydrated. 2008, May, c.e.
This item is a souvenir of an encounter with the mudroom door at the McHugh household in Pomfret, Vermont. Mrs. McHugh reports that it was all over in an instant. The result was a horrified, indignant feline, a worried owner, and a lovely addition to the collections at the Main Street Museum.
It is worth remarking that cats use their tails for many purposes: to communicate with other members of the hunting pack; to signal annoyance or excitement; to balance while leaping; and for comfort. Cats of all ages will on occasion use their own tails as playthings.
Brought to the Museum in Tupperware on May 31, 2008 at approximately 9:45 pm EDT. James had "showed off" this artifact and all the members of the band Pariah Beat were pretty elated about uniting the artifact with such an appropriate, permanent, home. After all, what other museum even wants a cat tail accessioned into its collections? And yet, for us, this "tale" (sorry) speaks to us; about human and animal relationships, about domestic life in America, about memorials and memory.
Plus, this item falls into to so many of our categories: Fauna (animals and parts of animals); Cute, Furry, Pet Related Things; Things that Shed and Molt; Stuff that Musicians leave Behind After their Concerts; the list goes on and on.
Tweak spent a day at the vet and is doing fine. When he sits in a spot of sunlight on the floor, or in the very center of that piece of newspaper, and wraps his tail around himself, he probably doesn’t even know the tip is gone.
This item is currently (2008) shedding. The fur is collected in a mylar bag; see: Shedding Fur from Tweak's Tail.