Friday, May 20, 2005


When Brenda and I got married in 1990, among the things she brought to the marriage were two cats (her daughter Heather's cats, actually). Joey was three at the time and Macks was six-months younger. Both were stray kittens and came as gifts from the same "friend" of hers. We always presumed they were brothers. When Heather finished college and moved to Winston-Salem, Joey joined her and he and Macks were separated, but when she moved to NYC, back came Joey. When Heather acquired her city-cat, Joey and Macks became permanently ours.

Macks was a friendly, gregarious cat, more dog-like than cat, but Joey always upheld the feline tradition of being cool, aloof, distant, . . . well, cat-like.

Both cats were declawed, so we were careful to keep them inside--away from the dangers of the outside world to a clawless cat. Joey was always the adventurous one. Macks was happy inside, but Joey longed for the outdoors. We had to duck-tape-closed all screens on any open window else Joey pushed his way through to "freedom", as he did on several occasions. Joey also liked little cat-like hiding places: bookshelves, the washing machine

even a day closed in a dresser after Brenda didn't see him and closed the drawer. When lying together, they looked like a two-headed cat.

Macks had to be sent to kitty-heaven in 2003 when he developed a large tumor in his side. That was a sad day. Joey, however, has continued to prosper. He has become much more affectionate, and has even developed into a good bed-cat.

I've also decided that 18 years is a long-enough sentence inside for an old cat, so he gets to go outside whenever he wants. He spends a lot of time on the back deck watching the world go by, occasionally foraying into the yard for a "business trip". If you see a fluffy orange cat sunning himself on my back deck, give him a wave.

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