Aby-a-Day – 18 April: Eulogy for Jacoby (Thursday Things)

Jacoby was such a great poser. He just seemed to understand what I wanted, and I could set him some place and he would sit there perfectly. I never trained him to do that, he just knew that the camera meant that he should hold still.

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When I saw the cat on the carousel in Boston Common, I knew I had to get a shot of Jake riding it. In between rides, they let me put him on the cat and were quite impressed with how cooperative he was.

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He struck this pose when he was only six months old.

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I used it to make this.

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He posed wonderfully without even trying.

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This photo became the iconic #strollercat T-shirt.

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He could be very dramatic at times…

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very dramatic!

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He was so wonderfully patient when I asked him to pose in his clothing.

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Jake loved riding the T.

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When it came to agility…Jake was a little too good at posing!

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Some of the best photos of him were in snow. The first one, with the hat, was published in Boston magazine.

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The current lot are photogenic, and Alfred in particular can throw some awesome poses… but they don’t have that understanding that Jake had. What were a team. We did so much together. I wonder if I’ll ever have that again with another cat.

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It’s not impossible…I said the same thing after Harri died, the last cat I had that kind of bond with. I just don’t know what the magic formula is for finding a cat like that.

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Jake was just so…bulletproof. I could set him anywhere and back away to take a photo, and I knew he wouldn’t jump down. We trusted each other implicitly.

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I love our current LunaTicks dearly, of course. Angel is not really bonded to anyone (she cuddles on her own terms) and Freddy is bonded to everyone. The kittens are also bonded to everyone, Izaak slightly more to me and Lorelai slightly more to Björn. But as much as we love them and they us…none of them have that connection, that spark, that undefinable something that elevates them to another level of human-cat interaction.

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On the simplest level, no other of our cats head bonk me. With Jake, I would put my head down and we would bonk our skulls together like a cranial fist bump. We did it fairly hard, too. When I try to do that with the others, they either back up, or sniff me, or rub their sides against my head…well, Freddy will sometimes pat me on the head. But no bonks.

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I hope I can find another Aby to bonk heads with some day.

Aby-a-Day – 1 Mars: So alike…yet so very different (Friday Flashback)

Izaak is so very different from Logan in so many ways. But they look so similar. Logan’s eyes were a bit more green, and Zak has a stockier build, but it’s hard to tell them apart in photos. In some pictures, I can only tell them apart by looking at their collars, and, of course, the date the photo was taken.

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But their personalities and mannerisms are so different.

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One major difference between Logan and Zak is Logan was a climber. He loved to go up on top of things: the cat tree, the hallway coat rack, the top of the bookshelf in the kitten room. And the tiny ledge on top of the refrigerator.

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That’s a hard ledge to get up onto, let alone stay on!

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Much harder than just sitting on top of the fridge door!

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Another difference between Zak and Logan is that Logan was extremely fastidious. He hated to be “dirty” and would stop to groom anywhere, anytime. You may remember what happened when Logan got his Suprelorin implant as opposed to when Zak got his.

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Even on the ledge of the fridge.

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Logan was such a climber. He was so athletic.

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He loved to be as high as he could.

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Meanwhile…Zak “The Sausage” Hellqvist can barely jump up onto the counter.

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And he is incredibly food-oriented, which Logan was not…but he’s also an extremely picky eater. I have never seen a cat who didn’t like dry food (it’s considered a special treat in our house), but Zak won’t touch it. He doesn’t even seem to recognise it as food. It makes cat shows challenging, to say the least.

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I wish they could have known each other. It would have been interesting to see them interact. But of course, if Logan hadn’t gotten FIP we wouldn’t have Izaak. But it would have been interesting to see them together.

Aby-a-Day – 25 Februari: In memory of Walter Hutzler (Hipstamatic Monday)

Sad news…CFA judge Walter Hutzler has passed away. He was a great cat judge and person. I didn’t know him well, but he lived in Region 1 and I was lucky to have seen him judge and have Jacoby judged by him a few times.

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The thing I remember about Walter is his flamboyant style of dressing. He also often wore scarves, which I thought was cool, and a nice change from the usual ties CFA judges wear.

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He was even featured in the 2006 PBS documentary Standard of Perfection: Show Cats. It’s always fun to see judges you know on TV shows.

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Walter was a really fun judge to watch.

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He really interacted with the cats as he judged them.

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Since it was Monday, I remembered I had taken some Hipstamatic photos of Walter judging Jake at a show in Groton, CT in October 2011 (the same weekend I met Molly and Mosey and Jake Gbecame a Grand).

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My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friend has stopped running today. Sleep well in Tuonela, Walter.

Aby-a-Day – 8 Februari: When Emma first met Angel and Jacoby (Friday Flashback)

Emma first met Jacoby and Angel when she came here to celebrate her sixth birthday in 2016, a month after I moved here.

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Emma, of course, fell in love with Jake.

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I mean, why wouldn’t she? He is such a charmer.

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She was mesmerised by him.

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Angel is always a tougher nut to crack…but Emma loved her, too.

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She went to pet Angel, and Angel didn’t run away, which is something for Angel.

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Angel was so sweet with Emma. It’s like she knew how much Emma loves cats and let her love on her.

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Björn loves it when she comes to visit, even if she says she’s going to see “cats…and Pappa and Kalle.”

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What does Jake think about Emma coming to visit us?

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He’s definitely a fan!

Aby-a-Day – 11 Januari: 12 years ago this week…(Friday Flashback)

12 years ago this week, on 7 January 2007, I posted about Gun-Hee’s first visit to Petco.

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He was quite impressed with the mice.

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The birds…not so much.

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Those were always more Tessie’s thing.

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And Jacoby’s, too.

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I’m just glad that nobody tried to buy him for $3.99, though!

Aby-a-Day – 28 December: Remembering my Christmas kitten (Friday Flashback)

Every year about this time, I have to remember my Christmas kitten, Gun-Hee.

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We collected him on 15 December 2006, only 10 days before Christmas.

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I’ll never forget the way he discovered climbing the Christmas tree.

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He was so proud of himself!

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And now, 12 years later, Gun-Hee is still in my Christmas tree every year…thanks to this Fancy Feast frame ornament.

Aby-a-Day – 23 November: “Who’s a pretty bird? WHO’S a pretty bird?” (Friday Fashion Flashback)

Facebook, in its infinite algorithmic wisdom, reminded me this morning of Jacoby’s invitation to be Cat of the Year at the famed Westchester Cat Show and the fashion show where Jake first wore his fabulous Turkey costume.

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Hard to believe that it’s been FIVE YEARS since then! So much has happened since then!

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Jake clearly thought he looked amazing in his festive outfit.

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The beautiful cat costume, made by Golden CouturePet, was only meant to be a loaner for the fashion show…

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…But it seemed to be custom-made for Jake. The minute he put it on, it was his. The creator agreed and gave it to Jake as a gift because it suited him so very well.

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Jake being named Cat of the Year was such an incredible honour.

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We will never forget it.

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And we have this sparkly confection of a costume to remember it by. Thank you, Westchester Feline Club!