Sunday, February 11, 2018

a very fine cat plate

My mother's colleagues gave her this plate some twenty three or so years ago, when she retired from the work that she did for the Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations, one of the examining boards that organized O [later GCSE] and A levels in what now seems to me, from afar, to be a strangely unregulated and uneven system.  She headed up - from an academic, rather than an administrative - point of view - English A levels for maybe 14 or 15 years, with a combination of critical fierceness and much humanity.  I'm not sure that she was wild about it when she was given it (did people think her a crazy cat lady?  was it somehow too kitsch or cutesy to be Good Taste?) but over the years I think she's mellowed to it.  I, at any rate, have loved it since I first set eyes on it, thereby probably fulfilling her fears that I (and Alice) really are crazy cat ladies ...

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