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It doesn't bark, it roars.
June 25, 2012 8:52 AM   Subscribe

Kensington Secretary Angela McWilliams takes her pet leopard, Michael, on a stroll through 1960s London. (SYTL)
posted by hot soup girl (23 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
Awww. All those poor confused puppies. I am pretty sure it wanted to eat that weiner dog.
posted by elizardbits at 8:56 AM on June 25, 2012


Welp, that narration is the most sublime thing I'm going to hear all month, so if anyone needs me, I'll be in bed with my ears stopped up.
posted by Greg Nog at 8:57 AM on June 25, 2012


Excellent! Alas that video wasn't around to catch Oscar Wilde walking his pet lobster in Oxford.
posted by IndigoJones at 8:59 AM on June 25, 2012


All through that video I was expecting Austin Powers to show up.
posted by jimmythefish at 9:02 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'd really like a followup on what happened to both the leopard and the woman.
posted by DU at 9:04 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


More weird sixties Brits from the sidebar: Dad drives daughter to work on motorised skates

"Clutch, brake, and throttle are all worked by leaning forwards or backwards." Sound familiar?
posted by Sys Rq at 9:05 AM on June 25, 2012


> I'd really like a followup on what happened to both the leopard and the woman.

Maybe they went on a ride on a water-motorbike.
posted by hot soup girl at 9:06 AM on June 25, 2012


'He's three years old, gentle as a kitten, and likes dogs.' I wonder whether Mark means that he eats dogs or is fond of them?
posted by shakespeherian at 9:08 AM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


Not to cast any aspersions on Angela McWilliams, but the fur coat and pet leopard make me wonder if "secretary" was in fact her primary occupation.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:08 AM on June 25, 2012 [13 favorites]


I love that other woman petting the leopard while wearing a coat made from one of the leopard's siblings.
posted by fatbird at 9:10 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ah, those were the days. When leopards had *proper* names.
posted by MuffinMan at 9:40 AM on June 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


I love that a woman took a wild animal that instinctively wants to roam around at least 30km2 in freedom, put him on a leash and presumably locked him up in some dingy flat in London.

Angela McWilliams was or is a horrible human being for doing that.
posted by cmonkey at 9:47 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yea. Watching the leopard "play" with those dogs (who quickly either got away or hid behind their owners after a few light swipes), "not knowing his own strength" is just heartwarming. Wait, not heartwarming: asking for a lawsuit is what I meant.
posted by smirkette at 10:05 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ah yes, the great British eccentric, long may they reign. (Of course Michael was probably set free when he got a bit too big becoming one of the many 'beasts' lurking around the country)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:17 AM on June 25, 2012


The call of the wild
posted by Isadorady at 10:18 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


And British Pathe is a great resource for all kinds of interesting videos! I waste many hours on it.
posted by Isadorady at 10:26 AM on June 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


Here they are together in a press photo. On the back it says Angela is 23, but the picture isn't dated. I would like to know what became of them as they got older.
posted by Francolin at 10:31 AM on June 25, 2012


They called you exotic. Which is just people talk for awesome. Which you are!
posted by Rock Steady at 11:01 AM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


In the 60s and 70s you could buy leopards and lions on the second floor of Harrods. Australians Anthony 'Ace' Bourke and John Rendell purchased a lion cub there and raised it in their small Chelsea flat in the late 60s.
posted by hot soup girl at 11:26 AM on June 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


Not to cast any aspersions on Angela McWilliams, but the fur coat and pet leopard make me wonder if "secretary" was in fact her primary occupation.

I'm glad someone else wondered - that was the first thing I thought when I saw the video. Having lived on a secretary's salary, "cloth coat and moggie" is more in line with the usual pay.

My great-aunt used to get all kinds of nifty mail-order catalogs (that I'd beg her to save so I could take them home). One sold all sorts of hard-to-find items - and wild animals. And I mean all kinds. Ocelots, leopards, something called a "kinkajou," baby raccoons, de-scented skunks, monkeys even. There are still plenty of places you can buy an exotic animal via the internet but I don't know anyone who would dare take their pet leopard out on a walk like that (or, where I live, wear a real fur coat - I once owned a very convincing fake and got hassled by PETA-types. Boo! An eyeroll and "it's fake!" usually shut them up).
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 11:54 AM on June 25, 2012


wonder if "secretary" was in fact her primary occupation.

I was actually assuming they meant something more like Home Secretary. But I guess not in the 60's.
posted by bitslayer at 12:24 PM on June 25, 2012


One sold all sorts of hard-to-find items - and wild animals. And I mean all kinds. Ocelots, leopards, something called a "kinkajou," baby raccoons, de-scented skunks, monkeys even.

Was it Sydney's Animal & Fowl Catalogue ?
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:43 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


wonder if "secretary" was in fact her primary occupation.

Being a secretary was a common profession until quite recently for upper middle class women who did not go to university. The idea was, I think, that you did it just about long enough for one of the dashing young men in the office to marry you.
posted by MuffinMan at 1:38 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


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