The history of the cat on skates

A place for the Cat on Skates Gang to Reminisce

Moderators: theelanman, dapinky, GeoffSmith, Dave Eds, DaveT, Elanlover, muley, Nige, Enright, nitroman, algirdas, Sy V, Specky, clemo

The history of the cat on skates

Postby GeoffSmith » Tue 28.05.2019, 19:35

Just in:
Clive Roberts wrote:
We'd been set up as a distinct team in a separate building, with security locks on the doors. That caused a "them and us" reaction in some areas so I suggested a project logo as a way to promote internal spirit.

Ian was all for it so I went over to the Technical Illustration section. This was in the pre-CAD days when all illustrations for assembly, service etc were done by some very skilled people reporting to Gerry Doe. I had a chat with the section leader, a very helpful chap called Ron (surname maybe Robinson?). I explained I was looking for something to convey the qualities we wanted in the car - speed, agility, not aggressive or intimidating. In other words not the stereotypical muscular lion, tiger etc. The cat was an obvious counterpoint but I couldn't see we could make something credible from a household mouser . As we were talking he sketched up a cat with the perfect stance, conveying exactly what I was looking for. The roller skates were the master stroke, of course, I'm pretty sure they were Ron's idea, or maybe one of his colleagues he called over to join us. I think his name was Mark (maybe another Roberts?).

We had a pretty good direction in under an hour, I left them to do the details. I was stunned when he produced the finished version the next morning, coloured and ready to go. Comical too compare with the time and money Google is reputed to have spent making a minute revision to their font. I got Ian's agreement and ordered the badges, I think from the company who made Caterham bonnet badges.

We had to use some creative description on the PO and invoice, I think Chris Garratt must have been in on that because she was one of the first outside the project to receive one for services rendered. They turned out to be excellent currency, we could get stuff made, repaired or painted in exchange for a cat badge. I controlled the supply as closely as possible, with the box locked in my top desk drawer.

One day I was working on something when a large hand appeared in my field of vision, palm up. At the other end of a very long arm was MJK. No words were exchanged, I opened the box and handed over a badge.

We also had stickers, and Mark Berry's wife got very enthusiastic and knitted sweaters to order. My kids, then about 5 and 7, had one each. I have a picture of them proudly wearing them on the Lotus stand at the Motor Show. They (the sweaters, not the kids) are in a storage box somewhere, could be Norfolk or Detroit.

The Corvette team made a great cartoon of a Corvette with huge teeth looming over a terrified cat, I think Ian probably had a copy.

I didn't know about the Castle Combe event. I would have loved to be there but sadly not possible.

I would have enjoyed your presentation, would still be interested to hear the "J*** K****" piece. It reminded me of a time Ian Doble gave a talk shortly after the M100 launch - I think to the I MechE somewhere in Essex. Around twenty of us went down to give him moral support. At one point he was answering a question about company rules for driving on public roads, and he said "I don't pay speeding fines". All round the room was a chorus of "Oh yes you do"!
Calypso Red S2 #417

USB ElanScan interfaces - £55 incl. P&P.
User avatar
GeoffSmith
Kitty Fiddler
 
Posts: 14804
Joined: Fri 03.02.2006, 21:57
Location: S2#417 in Tytherington, Gloucestershire

Re: The history of the cat on skates

Postby Rambo » Tue 28.05.2019, 20:32

Very interesting.

I bet Clive has lots of other interesting stories

VIP 2020 ?
Rambo
Don't push me
 
Posts: 7382
Joined: Wed 24.12.2003, 00:37
Location: Jedburgh

Re: The history of the cat on skates

Postby GeoffSmith » Tue 28.05.2019, 20:45

Only if we pay his airfare from Thailand - get buying some tat… NOW!
Calypso Red S2 #417

USB ElanScan interfaces - £55 incl. P&P.
User avatar
GeoffSmith
Kitty Fiddler
 
Posts: 14804
Joined: Fri 03.02.2006, 21:57
Location: S2#417 in Tytherington, Gloucestershire

Re: The history of the cat on skates

Postby Rambo » Tue 28.05.2019, 20:52

I'll take some of that "tat" of your hands in lieu of your son's bar bill at The Spice Merchant :drunk:

See you and Peter at Beadnell ?
Rambo
Don't push me
 
Posts: 7382
Joined: Wed 24.12.2003, 00:37
Location: Jedburgh

Re: The history of the cat on skates

Postby tigerdog » Tue 28.05.2019, 20:55

I absolutely LOVE the history this board has managed to assemble over the years. You might find another classic car to own, but you'll not find such a great community elsewhere. Thanks for sharing this, sir!
"Refitting is the reverse sequence to removal, but you swear in different places."
User avatar
tigerdog
God
 
Posts: 2609
Joined: Tue 20.03.2007, 09:07
Location: San Diego, CA, USA

Re: The history of the cat on skates

Postby steve matthews » Tue 28.05.2019, 21:13

:agree:
User avatar
steve matthews
God
 
Posts: 999
Joined: Mon 06.11.2006, 22:16
Location: VIRGINIA


Return to Former Lotus Employees (Ex-M100 Team)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests