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The Cats in My Life

I can type about 70 words a minute. However, I write a lot of my posts with one hand while the other pets Earl Grey, my cat. I’ve cleared off a large section of my desk. That’s where Earl likes to spread out.

Earl Grey is named after the tea. I'm a tea drinker, and he has a pink nose. Isn't he cute?

Earl is such a great cat. We found him 13 years ago after coming home from a wedding. It was 1 a.m. on a Saturday, and he was sitting on our front porch. He smelled bad and his left front leg was broken–no blood, just an internal break.

When Steven, my husband, and I opened the door. Earl walked in like he owned the place. He actually limped.

A week prior to that, we had lost our cat, Belle. She was 20 years old. She was my cat–meaning that while she was kind to everyone, when I was around she was my shadow. I found her and her brother, Gigs, at a newspaper office that I worked in.

Belle and Gigs
A female cat came in and had her litter of 4 kittens under a desk that had streams and streams of newspaper. It seemed soft. If you lifted up several sheets of paper, there were more underneath. The first cat that crawled out was Gigs, an all black kitty. Everyone loved him. He even helped me break into my apartment.

I lived in a house in southern Louisiana that was converted into 4 apartments. The landlord had locks on the front door knobs. If I forgot to turn the knob, which I almost always did, I got locked out. One day, after getting locked out again, I decided to see if I could break into my apartment. I just didn’t want to call the police again. They couldn’t believe that I would do this at least once a week.

In my defense, 2 of my other neighbors, Mary, a librarian and Darby, a teacher, also would occasionally forget to turn that damn knob in their front door handle. The police came one time when we all got locked out. I remember he said, “Uh, you’re a journalist, a librarian, and a teacher? Huh?”

Breaking and Entering
So, when I locked myself out after that, I tried to open the bedroom window. There was a table in front of the window, and Gigs slept there. I went to borrow a wire hanger from Mary. I straightened it out and added a loop at one end. I put it between the windows near the lock. I couldn’t get the loop on the window. I thought if Gigs could just place it on top of the lock, I could pull it to turn and open the window. It seemed logical to me.

So, when I got the wire with the loop in between the top and bottom windows, Gigs started batting at it. After 3 tries he got it right on the lock. I pulled and opened the window.

Gigs was with us for 15 years. Everyone loved him.

So back to Earl: After he hobbled into our house, we waited a few hours for our veterinarian’s office to open. He said he only sees breaks this bad once in a blue moon. So, he sent us to a vet about 45 minutes away. The vet was great. He put a cast on Earl’s leg that made it longer than the other 3. Steven placed a 5-foot barrier up so Earl couldn’t go up the stairs. We have 3 floors in our house and didn’t want Earl to tumble down. With the cast on, he would clear the barrier and sit perched on the top of the stairs with a smug look on his face.

Well, it is 13 years later. Earl is 16–we estimate. When we found him, the vet said he was 3 or 4 years old.

I’ve found other cats over the years. Some have lived with us, and others have been placed in good homes.

Please Share
How do you go out of your way to accommodate your fur friend? Please share your story with us.

10 comments to The Cats in My Life

  • I have adopted numerous ferrals, strays and drop offs. My current baby, Juno was given to me by a neighbor who did not have the time nor patience to work with this little black and white fur ball. He was on the fresh side when he was a baby. He used to do his bite and runs. He would run up to you nd bite yor ankle and run off. He has since grown out of that and has turned into a beautiful, spoiled boy. He is strictly indoor and he has his own chair in my bedroom that he can nap on when he feels the need. He is a joy and I love him. I have had 2 heart attacks and a TIA (mini stroke) due to Hypertension and when I am not feeling well, he is right there purring in my ears or grooming my hair. He then settles down and we take a nice peaceful nap together. This unwanted ball of fur has become my constant companion.

  • Loved the story about Earl.


  • Hi Jean, So glad you have Juno, and I’m sure he’s glad he has you.

  • Great stories Michele. Maybe Earl was Belle’s replacement? Not that any of our pets can be replaced, but his arrival seemed like great timing, for him and you.

    My dogs always come first, they have to. I’m single now and if I’m ever going to be un-single LOL, whoever that person is will have to understand the pets are like children that never grow up, and so they need constant care and therefore must always come first.

    Thanks for sharing your stories about the cats in your life Michele. =)

  • Thanks so much Jim,
    My husband always says, that Earl comes first. When I was dating, the men in my life always knew that my cats were my family. I just could not be with someone who isn’t pet friendly.
    I know your dogs are lucky.

  • In our household, Ty comes first. Then Buster. I hate being third!

  • Thanks for sharing Earl Grey’s story! He picked your house because he was in trouble and just *knew* that you would help 🙂

    When Jersey broke her leg we faithfully carried her up and down the stairs every morning and night so that she could sleep with us. Picked her up and placed her on the sofa so that she wouldn’t have to sleep on the floor AND for the first week I hand fed her everyday so that she didn’t have to place weight on the leg.

    My dog is my babes and I love her.

  • Earl is a lucky guy to have found you and your husband. It’s nice to read an uplifting story.

  • Thanks Sharon, We are lucky to have him. Michele

  • Hi Karen, Jersey is lucky. I know how much you love her.