The Hollywood Cats

we're cool!

I already posted about the crazy dogs we had when we were living in the funeral home, and we never had a cat growing up. In fact, I was never a big fan of cats because they always seemed unpredictable and skittish. So it makes no sense that within a week of moving to LA, we decided to get two cats.

We decided to eat lunch one day at a place on Sunset Boulevard named “The Source” (now it’s the Cabo Cantina.) It was a vegetarian restaurant and we had never been in one before. Let me tell you that vegetarian food is mostly shitty tasting. There was a sign up that said “Free Kittens out back.” My sister, brother, friend and I decided we should go look at the kittens after we ate.  Apparently, the mother of the kittens was someone’s pet that hung out at the restaurant and got impregnated by a wild hill cat. The result was six kittens, including one Tabby, and the runt of the litter that was all black. I immediately wanted the Tabby cat because he was different from the rest of them and then the little black runt came out from under a box, put his paws on my shoe and meowed at me. What could I do? We had to have both. The problem was that the Tabby cat was promised to someone who was supposed to come back and get him. Okay, I’ll fess up, we stole him.

worth the steal

We told them we were taking the black one and right as we were walking out the back, we scooped up the Tabby and took both of them home. We had no idea what we were doing with cats, but they were so cute and we figured it out; feed them cat food and have a cat box, that’s about it. Once again, we were really original with naming our pets. The Tabby, as we kept referring to as “the tiger kitty” eventually became “Tiger,” and the little black runt who we referred to as “the black kitty” ended up being named “Black Kitty.” I know, we were clever and creative and really took the time to name them something unique.

Hi! I'm the runt of the litter

They were really friendly cats and weren’t afraid of people. Most people that met them liked them, so much so that some weird guy who used to lived in my neighborhood in Hollywood would tell them so when he walked by my window. My first studio apartment was on the first floor and you could look right in my windows if you were above 5 feet tall. He had a really long grey pony tail and beard and must have seen me before because when the cats would sit in the window he would stop and touch the screen and say things like “Hi guys, where’s your mama?” Meanwhile, I’d be sitting on my couch watching him. Then he would tell the cats how cute they were and before walking away would say “I love you guys.” Okay, is that not weird?? He loves my cats? Don’t tell my cats you love them, you don’t even know them. You can’t just love cats because they are sitting in the window. What a creep!

we're cute, right?

After John moved back to LA, the cats were still with me so they came along to the new one bedroom apartment that we shared for 8 years. Those cats knew how to terrorize us with their incessant behavior. Anyone who doesn’t think cats are smart is dumb. They know exactly what they’re doing and they’re watching you all the time. Cats are also highly entertaining; but you know that by the number of popular cat videos on YouTube. They used to fight with each other sometimes and I wanted to break it up because the sound of cats fighting is weird. John would say, “Let them fight, it will be funny.” They would chase each other around the apartment and once they got a hold of each other they would bite and claw at each other, and the next thing we knew there were clumps of cat hair all over the apartment. Then they would just stop. They never really hurt each other, so after awhile, I found it funny and would let them do it. Is that wrong?

You know what wasn’t funny? When Black Kitty fell out of the third floor window. I don’t know if Tiger pushed him or what, but usually they would both greet me at the door like two little dogs. Other times, they would hide just to freak me out. Tiger was at the door when I came in but Black Kitty was nowhere to be found. I looked in the closets and in all their hiding places. I started to get nervous because sometimes they would dart out into the hallway when we opened the door. I thought maybe he ran out. I called John and asked him if they were both there when he left. He said yes and just as he told me I saw the screen was missing out of the window.  I hung up and felt a sense of panic wash over me. I ran to the window thinking I was going to see my cat splattered below my window on the ground. But nothing was there. I figured if he fell out the window, maybe he’s down in the parking lot which was below our window. I ran  outside and started calling for him. I didn’t hear or see him anywhere and started to cry a little bit.

I kept calling and all of the sudden, I heard a thumping sound underneath the hood of a car. I kept calling and got closer to the sound. I got down on the ground and looked underneath one of the cars and Black Kitty came crawling out from the engine of the car! I picked him up and he was covered in grease, but he seemed fine. I brought him back to the apartment and put him down and it was like nothing ever happened. He was acting completely normal. Can you imagine falling three stories and just getting up and walking away? That’s one reason cats are cool. I figured I would take him to the vet the next day and have all the grease washed off of him. I didn’t want to do it then because I figured he was already traumatized enough for the day. Later that night, he and Tiger got busy licking the grease off of him. By the next day, the grease was completely gone from the work of their sharp little tongues.

some weirdo just told us he loved us

Did I bother to take him to the vet anyway? No, because I wasn’t a very good cat mother. After we had their little balls snipped off, they rarely saw a vet. They never seemed to have a problem. I had Black Kitty until he was 14 and Tiger until he was 16. They were my two favorite pets to date. I loved those cats like they were my children no matter how many hair balls they puked up. I had them cremated and kept their ashes (at least I think it’s their ashes). That’s what I like about cremation. When you have the ashes, you feel like they’re still there a little bit. Sometimes, I just put the cans of ash on my lap while I watch TV just like when they were alive. Just kidding, I’m not that weird.

I could go on and on about my cats but that might be a little strange wouldn’t it? But I had to tell you about them because they were a big part of my LA life.  And I’m not gonna lie, I’m like a cat whisperer; they dig me and I dig them.

I hope you got through this whole post without thinking, “Why the hell is she telling us about her dead cats? Nobody gives a shit about her cats.”  Just be grateful that I didn’t write five pages about them, because I could you know. But I won’t because I’m already afraid I’ve driven you away with my crazy cat lady potential. So I’ll go now…

But today is hump day, so go hump something!

About Death To Hollywood

My name is Celeste Donohue and I am a writer/comedian who started this blog to tell stories about my life growing up in a funeral home and my adult life which I have spent in Hollywood, California – hence the name, “Death To Hollywood”. Hopefully, you like to read those kinds of stories. If not, go read something serious and boring.....
This entry was posted in family, Hollywood, weird and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to The Hollywood Cats

  1. The elder sister says:

    Oh Cee, they were such cute little kittens! They had a lot of adventures, remember when they flew to Philadelphia for Christmas? Tiger climbed the tree that year too and freaked mom out! Nothing like a purring kitty in your lap, sweet and cozy!

  2. Kris says:

    Oh cee…. They were the best! Remember when black kitty would nibble on your arm if you scratched his back? John would scratch his back and make him bite my arm:)

  3. mdonohue says:

    Celeste,I think that was a really sweet story,and the pictures were adorable.Oh! how we love our pets.They really are wonderful friends, Loyal and true to you.Love,Mom

  4. Josephine says:

    After reading this post I really don’t understand how people can live without any animals ever. I don’t care if you have a fish or just put out bird seed and bird watch (or talk to other people’s cats in the window!) there is something so compelling about animals.

    P.S. I am glad I am not the only one with cremains sitting around the house!

  5. Julie H. says:

    Loved your cat story. I adore cats and up till now have always had one. My last kitty, Yin, a beautful tuxedo cat, which way my son Rob’s but naturally ended up my cat, I loved dearly. She was 15 when she died in my arms and because I loved her soooo much I was depressed for months. I couldn’t go thru that again so we are catless

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