The story of this cat is a bit odd and worth telling.
My mom had a cat for several years who was her best companion. My mom owned one cat but only fell just short of being a crazy cat lady. She was crazy for THIS cat. His name was Mr. Cat. In 2004 my mom was so disgusted with the lack of choices in the presidential race that she began a campaign for people to write in her cat. Buttons and bumper stickers followed and before long several people in her neck of the woods were throwing their votes away on a large orange tabby cat. I remember the conversation I had while joking with my mom:
Me: I suppose he wouldn't do that well in the debates.
Mom: What makes you say that?
Me: He'd be asked about the war in Iraq and he'd just lick his butt.
Mom: How is that any different than watching Kerry or Bush?
|Bumper sticker from failed 2004 Mr. Cat for President campaign|
My brother was so concerned and rushed my mom to consider getting a new cat. She didn't want one but my brother insisted. I thought it was too soon but my mom went along with it and the next weekend they went together to a cat adoption place and my mom couldn't believe her eyes. She saw Mr. Cat. She took him home.
She called me that night and told me that she brought a cat home. I thought my brother may have over-encouraged her to get one but she went on and on about how I would not believe that this new cat was exactly like the cat she loved so much. I was skeptical and a bit worried that she was grieving so much that she was actually delusional.
|A happy and healthy Cat Too taken last Fall|
I went over to her house to mow the lawn and do other various household chores and of course to see this cat. See was right; I was stunned. He was the same size, body type and weight of her other cat. He was large and had a big nose like her old cat.
"What are you going to name him?" I asked.
"Mr. Cat 2" was her response.
"Oh that's original, just put a number two after him. That's a lot to live up to" I responded.
"No, Cat Too" she said as if I was stupid.
My mom always knew that the two cats were not the same cat but sometimes the reality of it blurred. It wasn't long before she just called him "Mr. Cat" and the sadness of losing her first cat disappeared. In other words my brother's dumb plan worked.
|Cat Too with Skull and Cross Bone name tag. Chairman Meow in the background.|
I've been criticized before in these situations. My older son was only 3 when our first cat, Chesty died and he wanted to help me bury him. "How could you?" and "I can't believe you did that" was a common response to how it was handled. My son still remembers that day and cherishes it as a dutiful and loving gesture to a pet. History will judge me for how I handled it...but if things turn out well I'm going to shove it back in history's face.
|My two sons placed a wreath on Cat Too's grave|