Diddy the Fat Black Kitty

My buddy

Almost 13 years ago, an eight weeks old black kitten came into my life. He didn’t have a name for several weeks and then my eldest daughter named him Diddy. Because he loves the spotlight and women.

Diddy is a naughty critter. Fuck it, he’s bad as hell and although he is considered a senior cat, he still be running around starting shit. Yowling like a damn fool, doing the crab walk although he’s 17 pounds, and taking off running like the hounds of hell are chasing his bad ass. But I wouldn’t have him any other way.

During the almost 13 years he’s been a part of my life, we have had many adventures. When I moved to Minneapolis eight years ago, he rode in a carrier on my lap. We have lived like Gypsies over the years and not one time have I thought about leaving him behind. Well except one. I was going to be living with my sister friend Trena when I moved to Minneapolis and I didn’t know if she was going to welcome Diddy so I started looking for a no kill shelter but when I talked to her, she told me that he was welcomed too. My boo is an ancestor now and I wish she was here so I could tell her how wonderful she was for allowing me to bring my critter with me.

I got Diddy from my girl Angela. Her cat Silver had a set of kittens who were born May 17, 2009 and when they got old enough, they would be given to loving homes. And I put my bid in because at the time, I was living in an apartment complex with a mice problem. Those mice were some bold fuckers too. Straight squeaking and partying when the lights were turned off at night.

He became a part of my family officially on August 1, 2009. I went to her home to pick him up and he was laying in a box with his sisters. His mama was laying on Angie’s bed looking at me anxiously because she knew I was coming for one of her babies. I rubbed and comforted her, telling her that he would be loved and would always have a home. For almost 13 years, I’ve kept my promise to Silver because as long as I have a home, Diddy will always be there.

We have gotten old together, Diddy and I. I’m 51 and he’s 64 in human years and sometimes, we be fussing and fighting with each other. And then we be chilling out on the bed. He’s my booga cat, my fleabag. I know that cats don’t live as long as humans but the little girl that is in me wants him to be the world’s oldest living cat because I’m not ready to let him go. But as long as he’s here, he’s going to be loved and cherished.

Me and my fleabag

In Honor of Boogie Woogie – My First Cat

A black cat

The first man who broke my heart was a black cat named Boogie Woogie. He became my cat in February of 1980 and he was my first pet.

Back in the 70s and 80s, the schools in Chicago stayed on strike and it was during one of these strikes that Boogie came into my life. It was a snowy day and I was outside playing in the snow with my friends Rosalyn and Derrick when we saw a man walking down the block.

He was a tall, dark skinned Black man wearing a black wool trench coat, a black fedora hat on his head, and a black cat wrapped around his neck (I swear I’m not lying). Derrick asked the gentleman,”Can this little girl have that cat? She loves cats and need one because her house has a mouse.” And we did. The fucker had chewed up one of my dolls.

The gentleman took the cat off his neck and gave him to me and strode off down the street, never to be seen again. I took my new cat into the house and fed him some lunch meat and when my mother came home from work, she was greeted by the sight of me laying down on the couch with my new pet that I christened Boogie Woogie. Can’t remember why I gave him that name but he was Boogie Woogie for then on.

Boogie was in my life for just two short years but during those two years, he became my little buddy. He would walk me to school and would be waiting on the porch when I got home. He slept with me nightly under the covers and would sit next to me when I read to him.

My mama wasn’t a cat person but she tolerated him and would toss him the innards of the whole chicken she cooked every Sunday. I can see them right now with him waiting patiently to get his weekly treat and her rolling her eyes but still feeding him.

He was an outdoor male cat who wasn’t neutered so sometimes he wandered off for weeks but he always came back to me. But one day he didn’t and I never saw Boogie again. For years, I dreamed about him and in those dreams, he came home and jumped into my bed purring like crazy because he missed me too.

During the years since Boogie left, I’ve had many cats and currently have one, a bad ass cat named Diddy but Boogie will always have a special corner in my heart. My first pet. My buddy. And if there’s a place where souls go after they cross over, I’ll see my Boogie Woogie again when it’s my time.

Those two years he was in my life were very special and he made a little Black girl happy although his absence brought pain. I will cherish those two years forever and will always remember a black cat named Boogie Woogie.