Dmitry (Meech) and Vivian are both rescues from the Wisconsin Humane Society. Meech’s previous family surrendered him because they were moving, but he, Vivian and I journeyed as a happy trine from Wisconsin to New York so that I could attend grad school. 15 hours in a rental car with no problem on the road. Well, almost. Free from the restraints of his carrier, Meech managed to roll down the back window and tried to make friends with the toll booth attendant. There was a moment, as I struggled to close the window, when I thought he’d jump out and I’d lose him, but I was able to get him back into his carrier and turn child lock on. As soon as I could, I pulled over for a Jesus-Take-the-Wheel breather, and then accelerated onward into the city. We made it just fine eventually.
I think everyone assumes Meech is my favorite because I take a lot of photos of him. I mean, that face. Smoosh! How can I resist? While I maintain that I don’t have favorites, I do have a very specific relationship with each cat. Vivian, resplendent with her silky gray coat, is my chic little soul sister. I got her as a kitten and we are intuitively on the same level. I don’t want to sound too Karl Lagerfeld and Choupette, but I can blink at Vivian from across the room and she’ll run to me. She’s an affectionate cat to people and other pets alike, but I’m her person. Meech, though he’s dependent on me for morning eye washes and grooming (I DO SO MUCH FOR YOU MEECH! YOUR HAIRCUT IS MORE EXPENSIVE THAN MINE!), prefers the attention of a crowd to mine. That is why his summers are spent going for walks in his stroller (to be seen!) and why he’s the one with the big themed birthday parties. The two have a yin and yang thing going on and though they’re very different they both devastate me every time I leave the apartment. I love their company and find that on a hard day, they snuggle up next to me on the couch, one on each side, and I am renewed.
Both kitties have emerging meowdeling careers. Vivian is in the Cats of Instagram book and this year’s calendar, and Meech had his first shoot with NYC photographer Bea Helman in December 2017 and he has been featured on GetLeashedMag.com (not as BDSM as it sounds). @duchessvivian
KrisAnne Madaus is a writer and holds an MFA in creative writing (fiction) from The New School. She’s currently finishing her novel, and her work has been published by the National Book Critics Circle, The Chicago Review of Book’s Arcturus, Spring Gun Press, VanityFair.com, and is forthcoming from [the Same] and No New Music.