Pet Profile: Locke Cole
Not long after adopting Rydia, John wanted to add a second bird to his flock who could keep his little girl company during the day, and late that summer he brought home a tiny little baby boy he would name "Locke."
Locke's Story: Rocking with Big Hair & Tight Pants
Always a favorite of the ladies, Locke is a sassy pretty boy who plays his role to the hilt, at times bordering upon becoming a prima donna. Then again, Locke feels he's a reborn 80's glam-rock star--perhaps Billy Idol, or so he earnestly hopes; more appropriate might be Boy George--and thus everyone female (and metrosexual) should faun and swoon at his every beck and call. Still, rumors abound as to Locke's true orientation despite the swarms of adoring, bra-waving teenagers... could it all be some sort of publicity stunt on his part, or might Locke actually walk the other side of the tracks?
Locke's raison d'etre in John's household originally was to keep Rydia company while John was gone to work (he having begun working full time in 1997), but soon Locke would eclipse the role of companion to John's doting little girl. His interest in 80's music quickly grew until Locke spent all his afternoons emulating his newfound heroes, from the moon-walking moves of Michael Jackson to the bubbly pop tunes of Tiffany and Debbie Gibson. Locke came to see himself reflected in the big hair, tight pants, and extreme antics of the glam rock scene, feeling the greatest kinship with Def Leppard, Poison, and, of course, Billy Idol.
Locke's descent into the seedy and steamy world of glam rock almost took a terrible price, for over Thanksgiving of 2002, Locke developed zinc poisoning and nearly died (the full story of which is at SaveLocke.com). Happily, Locke successfully completed an intensive detox session and is quite healthy today.
Currently, he shares a bit of a "Felix and Oscar" relationship with his cagemate Kain, who as too much the Cassanova had to move to the boys-only dorm--a move which has done nothing to silence the speculation about Locke's sexuality, rumors that Beth vehemently denies.
John raised Locke from such a tender young age that he'd had to hand-feed Locke with a syringe four or five times a day, but he soon grew up to be a sassy (and loud) little boy--and one not to often heed the oft-repeated admonition about not biting the hand that feeds.
Like Rydia, Locke is named for a character from the Final Fantasy series, this time from the sixth installment. Even before John had brought Locke home that early September, he'd speculated prophetically about his name on an old version of his "pets" Web page:
You can put money on me giving him a name from Final Fantasy. Perhaps Shadow, Golbez, or Kain... we'll see. Even Locke. I dunno yet. I'm not even sure he's male, though based on behavior that's the vet's best bet.
The Japanese developers of Final Fantasy VI likely chose the name "Locke Cole" both for the philosopher John Locke and the homonymous "lock" (and thus surname "Cole" after the lock manufacturer). As the character is a treasure hunter and thief by nature, the name is doubly ironic.
Locke has grown much happier in recent years, particularly sinc ehis recovery from zinc poisoning (which was likely caused by his cage and items in it, not by his antics as a glam rock star, of course). He knows a handful of tunes, from the opening bars of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony to portions of the Olympic anthem and various school fight songs, although he more often composes his own tunes. He also can say his name and that of his long time cage-mate, Rydia.
Although not devoted exclusively to Locke, you can visit his site to learn more about Locke at: