Back in the day (which means back when I made my first website in the late 1990s), my friends who had already created websites populated them with cat pictures. Cat memes are still all over the internet, and while the cast of “Avenue Q” proudly sing that “the internet is for porn” for the rest of us, the internet is for cats. Here are a few, and I’ll add the originals at the end just for the entertainment of it.

Simon takes over SimonStrong 


These first three are Simon Strong, named by the eldest child of the family who adopted him, and then returned him after he started getting out of their house and attacking neighborhood dogs–big dogs–and sending them to the vet for stitches. Our optimistic hope is that his siblings might be able to discipline him and it might be working. He hasn’t bitten me in a few months . . . but he does like to colonize my workspace and chew computer cables and shoe laces, and his teeth are very sharp.

Simon-sleeping Fosbury-sleeping

The cat that looks ready to pounce even when sleeping is also Simon, and the demure curled up sleeper is his half brother Fosbury (who used to do a perfect Fosbury Flop when jumping for cat toys—look it up if you don’t know what the Fosbury Flop is!). Fosbury is about four months older than Simon. All of the cats currently living with us are semi-feral, from two litters the same mother (Mama Cat) kindly left in the wood pile and on the porch.


Same mother, but a different father and man if you ever needed to know about genes it would be those cats. Fosbury and his three siblings are gentle, kind, and loving. Here is Fosbury with his sister, the beautiful Quii. Fosbury just awoke for a little yawn and then went back to sleep with his paw protectively draped over her shoulder. My neighbors have the identical copies of these two cats, all from Mama Cat’s first litter (that we know of). After the second litter, which included Simon, we were able to get her fixed.


And this is the second litter just after we retrieved them. We kept Mia (who Simon’s people still call “boots”) and I named her Mia Hamm because she dribbles cat balls up and down the hall with both paws and then shoots them under whatever furniture or door she comes across (look up Mia Hamm if you don’t know who she is!). Mia is pretty ferocious as well, but smaller than Simon and she has never bitten us although as a kitten she snarled very ferociously. Fosbury tamed her and they now play fight in a very charming way. There are clearly rules and every now and then Fosbury stops the proceedings and they take a little time out.  Que+Mia

This is Quii and Mia all grown up. I really like the fact that Quii, Mia, and Fosbury all curl up and sleep next to whomever is nearby. They also come out to play as soon as Simon falls asleep. Below is Simon as a kitten trying to get out of the crate we kept them in at night to keep them safe. And next to him is Smooth (formerly Nala) exploring my computer. She now lives with my former colleague Erin who describes her as “naughty — but not in an unpleasant way.” As you can see, three of the four cats from this last litter are totally black like their mama, as were two from the first litter. Their paws have black pads, they have black claws, black whiskers, black noses.  Mia got all that white from her father.

simon? Nala-kitten2

Finally, below is Smooth/Nala all grown up and next to her is the final cat of the second litter, Zelda Rose, who lives with my dear friends Becky and Tom in upstate New York.  Becky describes her as the “naughtiest cat I have ever met.” See the theme here? And the resemblance?

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And here is what I had on that first website: Tessa & Frida are relatives of the current batch, all descending from Chivers (that’s where the stripes come from). I miss them all, but they had the best lives we could give them!

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