Recently in honor of Father’s Day, I asked I HAVE CAT reader to send in photos of the Cat Men in their lives. A young man by the name Teyu sent the loveliest photo of himself in uniform (he is a United States Marine), holding his cat Momcat. What could possibly be better than a Cat Man? A Cat Man in uniform of course! Enjoy!
“Wow, that’s some feminine picture you’ve got there Chou,” my fellow Marines called out when they discovered Facebook photos of me and my pudgy cat affectionately named Momcat. Well, in truth, my fellow Marines didn’t use those exact words – I had to civilize what they said down to an appropriate level for political correctness and public publication.
I’ve always loved cats and they’ve always shown their love to me. I realize being a cat-lover doesn’t align with the rough-and-tough image Marines typically portray, but I don’t really mind. They are the ones missing out on the emotional satisfaction and the intimate bond that Momcat and I share.
Back track about a year ago when I was a senior in college and Momcat moved into my single apartment after persistent pleas to my parents. Having lived with my parents for the past 5 years, they were at first reluctant to send Momcat away. For the next short 6 months, Momcat found herself claiming my humble single bedroom/living room dwelling with claw-able fluffy carpets and two attack-able old couches her territory.
Momcat, in her absolute adorableness, would flex her hidden muscles beneath her layers of fat and do incredibly daring jumps from one couch to another. Not only was the sight of her dangling belly swerving from side to side during her jumps absolutely hilarious, Momcat would softly grunt a quick “meow” whenever she landed, adding an auditory element to her performance. My college friends flocked to witness my new roommate. She brought so much joy to both me and my friends.
When workload was heavy and my part time job schedule was stacking up, I would sometimes not see her for many hours until bedtime. There were many dark, rainy, exhausting nights when I would emotionally limp back home after a long day only to find myself smiling upon arriving at my door. Because as soon as I start reaching for my keys, Momcat would meow loudly behind the door and her tail would tremble with excitement as I walked in.
For a single college student living alone, one cannot ask for more than a loving pet waiting at home, faithfully looking forward to your return whatever the hour.
Now that I am serving in the military, seeing Momcat is a rare and precious luxury and I often wish for her company in the barracks. But Momcat, in her long and adventurous 18 years of life deserves a break and doesn’t need the military lifestyle (though her weight might benefit!).
Contrary to what many of my coworkers might think, being a cat owner takes more of a man than the average twenty-something single Marine! I had the opportunity to really learn the meaning of being depended on when I had Momcat under my care.
Her health and well-being weighed heavily upon my shoulders as I witnessed her terrified reactions to my new apartment. The week she had diarrhea for unknown reasons, my spirit was crushed and I had such fear I was doing something wrong. And the many nights when I knew in my heart she missed me terribly but I had to be away from home for school.
Being the independent person I am, such feelings were foreign to me and the dawning realization that I was no longer the sole person bearing the results of my actions hit me the first few days of her arrival.
A sense of “this must be what it feels like to be a father,” often lingered my mind in good times, when she slept soundly in my arms, and bad times when I reluctantly cleaned up after her trailing vomit and poop.
All in all, I’m thankful for all the moments I’ve had and will have with Momcat. She not only prepared me to be a better father when my day comes, she’s also nothing short of a pure blob of joy and laughter to me, my friends, and my family.*
On another note, Kip has the opportunity to tie-the-knot (before I do) to animal advocate Wendy Diamond’s pup Hope. We’re pretty free-wheeling in NYC, but will an inter-species couple ever have a chance? We hope so! A vote for Kip is a vote for cats and dogs - and their people – to put their differences to bed (ha!) and join forces!
The competition is tough so we really need your vote to get into the final 10 (only 1 vote per person ever!). We’re close to 100 but a few dogs have 100-400!You need a Facebook account to vote. Just click on the link below and follow the directions.
1) “Like” the page
2) Scroll down
3) Select “friend” and you should see his photo.
THANKS EVERYONE! Every vote counts, we just need to get into the top 10!