This (the one on the right) is Mr Purple Pants. No purple, no pants. It took us a while to winkle out the foundations of this name. It turns out that new-cavy-owner Xan (5.5yob) is a big fan of John English’s character the Pirate King from the musical The Pirates of Penzance, but doesn’t remember either John’s name or the character’s – but does remember the scene from HMS Pinafore in which John as the Pirate King whips out Rafe Rackstraw’s contract and starts reading it aloud only to discover that it’s a love-letter from Buttercup, starting “I love your purple pants...”
So there you go. There was a reason for it after all.
Chasing down juvenile chains of logic has been an extremely entertaining education for me, something I can recommend to any geek. There is a price to pay in sleepless nights etc, and someone has to stagger around like a cow for 40 weeks beforehand, but it most certainly has its lighter moments.
The guinea pig in question is an ordinary boring agouti about 10cm long, and providentially happens to be a male (that’s one less thing to explain).