Ode to a Black Cat

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“The smallest feline is a masterpiece.”
—Leonardo da Vinci

“What greater gift than the love of a cat.”
—Charles Dickens

I’m pausing Monster Paradise today to pay tribute to my 18 year old cat, Kitty-Girl, who passed away last week. This week’s comic is a recreation of a strip I drew of Kitty-Girl sometime in 1997.

Kitty-Girl was born in my Grandmom’s barn, the runt and only black kitten in a litter of tabbies. She was foisted upon me and I lived with her near-feral behavior for a year or two, before she adapted to the pampered life of a house cat. Or, as my grandmom groused, “You took a perfectly fine cat and turned it into a PET.”

Kitty-Girl never completely abandoned her barnyard ways and was an excellent mouser. She took her job seriously and kept our house and yard critter-free. Once she brought me a snake that somehow found its way INSIDE the house. She got tuna for dinner that night.

Kitty-Girl was also the purringest cat I’ve ever known. She’d purr at any silly old thing. She purred when she was contented, scared, sick, concerned, hungry, amused, angry, disinterested, or philosophical. You could just look at her and she’d purr.

I miss Kitty-Girl with all my heart, but I’m grateful for the time we had together. During her last years, Kitty became very frail, her body racked with arthritis. Her decline was heart-breaking to witness. I prefer to remember her as the impish, loving kitten, ready to make anything her toy.

RIP, little black cat.

Take care,
Steph