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EXCELSIOR, YOU FATHEAD! - heave down the catfood an' heave-to yer dinghy

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July 13th, 2014


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03:19 am - heave down the catfood an' heave-to yer dinghy
Every now and then we find bits of random detritus on the ol' hard drive and while I am not trying to imply there'll be any kind of lost blog entries from Abbie any time soon, I did want to bring to your attention a fine sea chantey that was written aboard Martha the Cat's own ship, the Flying Kitten. The appearance of the ink on the pages implies that the verses were added over time, and if the page numbering is anything to be believed (the song ends on a posthumous verse), there might be quite a few more verses out there. At any rate, here is what we currently have of the chantey about Martha the Cat, which was named by a crew member who apparently wasn't very imaginative.

THE CHANTEY ABOUT MARTHA THE CAT

Oh, Martha the Cat was a mighty fine pirate
The cleverest pirate 'pon these Seven Sinks,
When asked how she did it, she said "It's no secret:
A captain is only as good as she thinks."
Yes, boys,[1] yes
That is what Martha would do.
Martha the Cat helmed a mighty fast vessel
A frigate she was, Flying Kitten her name
Her figurehead was of a panther a-leaping
The colors she flew high resembled the same.
Yes, boys, yes
That is what Martha would do.
Now, Martha the Cat had a brother named Abbie
This brother, his appetite grew as he grew
For breakfast he'd start with a brunch and three lunches
And then finish off with a dinner or two.
Yes, boys, yes
That is what Abbie would do.
Well, Martha the Cat went out sailing one morning
The morning was fair and the water was nice
She sailed far away and came back in a fortnight
With her tail held up high and a holdful of mice.
Yes, boys, yes
That is what Martha would do.
Once Martha the Cat was brought up 'fore His Honor
His Honor, he said "We found you with the loot!
I've only one question to ask: did you nick it?"
And Martha replied, "I don't know... but I'm cute!"
Yes, boys, yes
That is what Martha would do.
Old Martha the Cat, she's now sailing far elsewhere
That elsewhere, it's somewhere you'll go and then stay
But a message I found in a bottle said "I'm good!
There's fine prizes here 'pon the old Milky Way."
Yes, boys, yes
That's where the good Kitten flew!

1. An annotation scribbled in the margin of the first page, written by Martha herself, explains that aboard The Flying Kitten, every crew member may be referred to as 'boy' because it is, in her particular cat dialect, the word for sailor. This has yet to be verified but we have top linguists working it right now. Top. Linguists.

(8 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:fanghopper
Date:July 13th, 2014 11:33 am (UTC)
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*applause*
[User Picture]
From:sovay
Date:July 13th, 2014 02:11 pm (UTC)
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And Martha replied, "I don't know... but I'm cute!"

Prrrrt.
[User Picture]
From:muffyjo
Date:July 13th, 2014 03:13 pm (UTC)
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Ay!
[User Picture]
From:schreibergasse
Date:July 13th, 2014 04:53 pm (UTC)
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I now want someone to come up with a good tune for this. And maybe perform it at Readercon.
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From:eustaciavye
Date:July 13th, 2014 09:42 pm (UTC)
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I heard a tune in my head as I read it. I guess all that time singing Sea Chanty's at cons has paid off.
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From:derspatchel
Date:July 13th, 2014 10:02 pm (UTC)
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I do have a tune in my head for it as well; the verse has the same cadence as some of Spanish Ladies so it lilts a bit like it. The refrain has a nice declamatory tune.

I'll see if that old song transcription site is still up (songsmith or something, I think?) and bang out something; the rhythm will be a little less bouncy than it should be but it's adaptable as all good folk music should be.
[User Picture]
From:ketzie
Date:July 13th, 2014 10:30 pm (UTC)
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In my house, we still, sometimes, sing the praises of Martha and Abbie.
[User Picture]
From:bex77
Date:July 13th, 2014 11:33 pm (UTC)
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Yo ho ho and a sock full of catnip!

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