INTRODUCTION

“He’s crazy!”

“He’s definitely insane!”

“How many cats did you say he has? Did you say eighteen, all living inside his house? He really should see a doctor. There’s something wrong with him.”

“Does he know all their names? Did you really say eighteen? He’s a meshugeneh!”

Hi, my name is Harvey Bevitz, the author of the book you’re about to read. The above are just some of the comments made directly or indirectly to me during the past fourteen years, the years of the cat. I think I’m sane, but most insane people probably feel the same. So, I’ll let you make the determination.

I never had the privilege of being a cat’s companion until I was forty-six. Dogs were the pets of choice in my family. As a child, my association with cats was limited to the brief meetings by chance, at a friend’s house.

“There he goes again talking about them like they’re real, like they’re people. I told you he had a screw loose.”

As you may have noticed, I always reference myself as a cat’s companion, never as their owner, and I never refer to them as pets. They would be mortified to think of themselves as pets.

“There should be an intervention. Somebody should put him away.”

The truth of the matter and all cat companions know this, a cat is never owned. A cat allows the priceless pleasure of being their life’s companion.

The next two hundred or so pages give a glimpse into my life, a life that was turned upside down and over from that which existed before the entrance of the cat. Previous to my feline association, I had been referred to as a hurricane, blowing into lives, doing damage, and then blowing away. I never saw myself as a hurricane because it’s peaceful living inside the hurricane’s eye. The damage is always done to others.

Hurricane Harvey blew into Rita’s life at age forty-four. Two divorces were in the path of the storms past devastation. Rita brought a calm of all calms. The perfect storm had departed. The seas were still. The skies were magnificent in their blues. But, this was the perspective living life inside the eye of the monster. Our marriage ended after ten years leaving me depressed and the sole caretaker of six lovely felines. Rita brought me kicking and screaming into the world of the cat. Since I was remaining in the house, I got the “kids”.

This story reveals how six cats became eighteen and how, in that process, a man found his soul. So sit back and enjoy because you’re going to meet The Mici, Micia, Pepper, Panda, Raffle, Junior, Wolfie, Mommy, Spunky, Groucho, Midnight, Mindy, Annie, Priscilla, Shadow, Emma, Gonzo, Draidle and more. SEE, I really do know all their names, and I’ve learned much more by living with my companions.

They have taught me the magic of friendship, love, being unstoppable, being courageous and much, much more. They have taught me lesson after lesson, the greatest of all being the absolute joy of living and participating in life. These gifts I now share with you.

“I don’t care if he knows all their names, I still think he’s a Looney Tune.”

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