(As part of an ongoing “Cat Guy” theme, I’m publishing user-submitted stories about their “Cat Guys.” This is one in the series. Click here for past “Cat Guy” posts. Are you a Cat Guy, or have a Cat Guy you’d like to tell the world about? Send me your story!)
A couple of years ago, I sponsored a contest for the “Food Lady/Food Dude of the Year” Award, as nominated by their cats. One of the top nominees was Bitey, Stevie and Lucy’s Dad — Paul — who epitomizes Cat Guy-ness. And I know whereof I speak: last January, when my Siamese, Mao, went on walkabout for a week, Paul’s wife told me he would come downstairs every morning and ask, “Any news about Mao?” (Keep in mind, I’ve never actually met Paul, and they live 2500 miles away.) That Sunday, in church, Paul teared up thinking about Mao and what our family was going through. So when I initially wrote about Cat Guys, Paul was top-of-mind.
The following are excerpts from One-Eyed Stevie’s nomination of Paul for “Food Dude of the Year,” so you can hear it straight from the cat’s mouth:
“My name is Stevie and I am a one-eyed kitty who really loves his daddy. My brother and sister, Bitey and Lucy, have helped me write this because I’m a big baby and I don’t know how to type. But the words are mine and Bitey and Lucy agree that our daddy is the bestest daddy EVER!
“My daddy was never really a “cat” guy. He likes all animals, but Mommy really wanted to get two kitties after they got married. So when a lady at Daddy’s work found a bunch of 3-week old kittens starving in an alley behind their office, he called Mommy and they picked Bitey and Lucy to come home with them. They helped Bitey and Lucy grow big and strong, by bottle feeding them and burping them and everything. So when Daddy heard about a little kitty who was blind in one eye who needed a home, he convinced Mommy that three kitties would be no different than two kiddies. She bought his lie and I was added to the family. So without Daddy, I might not be here today.
“Daddy goes with Mommy and us to every one of our vet’s appointments. How many daddies do that? Everyone knows that daddies aren’t as tough as mommies when it comes to medical stuff, but Daddy goes along ’cause he wants to help keep us calm.
“Daddy shares all of the kitty chores, including giving us yummy treats, food and cleaning out our litterbox. He has the morning shift and does it every single day. (UPDATE from Stevie’s Mom: Paul took over ALL of the kitty chores when I got pregnant and couldn’t do cat litter anymore. Adam is 8 months old and I have not cleaned a litter box since I found out I was pregnant! And he doesn’t complain.)
“Daddy gives up his spot on the bed for us. I sleep at the foot of the bed and keep my parents’ toes in line. If the toes move, I bite them. It’s an important job. But Lucy sleeps between Mommy and Daddy and kneads Mommy all night. While she does this, she pushes against Daddy and makes him move over so she has enough room to knead. So daddy ends up sleeping like an S on a small part of the bed so that Lucy and I have as much room as we need. Mommy would roll on us if she could, ’cause she doesn’t pay attention to where we are when she’s sleeping, but Daddy would never roll on us.
“He gives Bitey RuffPetz (patent pending). What are RuffPetz? Every time Daddy is near a bed, chair, couch, etc., Bitey jumps up for some special petting techniques perfected by Daddy – RuffPetz – where Daddy pets Bitey really hard. Mommy can’t do it – she tried and Bitey just walked away. [Bitey inserts here – yeah, they’re awesome and Daddy is the only one who can do it – Mommy sucks at it.]
“I hope this all explains why my daddy is the bestest daddy in the world. He saved my siblings, he saved me and he would save all of the other animals and people in the world if he could. If he has a flaw, it’s that he has friends who come to our house and scare me. But it’s not his fault that he has friends, I guess.”
All cats should be so lucky as to have a Cat Guy like Paul looking after them!