the cat rescued from Afghanistan embassy
by Josh Shaffer
From his days as a kitten, Hooch jaunted through the Afghan war zone
with whiskered poise – a streetwise feline born at the U.S. Embassy,
a patriot cat who scared off rats and scorpions, enjoying head-scratches
from the occasional diplomat.
Then one day in 2011, Hooch let pride lead him into danger. In the middle
of an ambassador’s speech, he strutted across the podium in Kabul,
tail held high. The order came down one day later: Kill all embassy cats.
The kerfuffle that followed made international headlines as the community
of embassy cats – Gordo, Ferdinand, Mother Teresa – found
aid from a pro-cat committee that sought to spare them the ax, arguing
that they provided a boost to both public health and morale.
And in the middle of that fracas stood Kathleen Lavin of Pinehurst, a
government contractor and IT specialist who often slipped Hooch a can
of tuna. Soon after the death order came down, embassy workers started
sneaking cats into their living quarters. As this was happening, Lavin’s
plans took root. The story of her daring rescue, declassified at last,
can now be told.
“I decided it was time for Freckles to leave his Afghanistan name behind,” said
Lavin, 63, revealing her cat’s overseas identity. “He would be forever
known as Hooch. ... He was going to North Carolina.”
Three of Lavin’s friends paid $1,000 for Lavin to stow her refugee
cat on board a Turkish airline, which involved a frenzy of shots and
paperwork. Further complicating their movement was Hooch’s hygiene,
having lived his life not only outdoors but in a third-world country
where war had raged for a decade. Lavin gave Hooch a bath.
Then came the problem of Kabul airport security, which Hooch experienced
as a first-time crate animal.
“Did you know that kitty litter looks an awful lot like explosives in the
X-ray machine?” Lavin asked.
Hooch flew to Istanbul in the cabin, his plane lacking a pressurized
hold. He managed stress by howling. Once he arrived stateside, United
Airlines immediately routed him to a line with 300 people and submit
to a crate inspection. Lavin and Hooch nearly got separated on the flight
to Raleigh thanks to delays and nearly missed connections, but they eventually
arrived in Pinehurst, where Hooch met his friend Tater Tot the rescue
“Life is good for them,” Lavin said.
Six years later, Hooch has grown into a domesticated, 17-pound beast.
The sound of golf clubs has replaced the noise of explosions in the distance.
But Hooch still carries himself with the same worldly aplomb – a
fur-covered survivor, a voyager in spots.
25, 2017 - "I have studied many philosophers and many
cats. The wisdom of cats is infinitely superior." -
Gratuitous Kittiness: "Yeah, looks like it's your wheel cylinder."
Mewvie: A little cat music.
Feline Art: "Folk
Art Cat" by
26, 2017 - "My husband said it was him or the cat...I
miss him sometimes." - Unknown
Gratuitous Kittiness: "Your move, Schrodinger."
Mewvie: Cats in slo-mo.
Art: "Cat concept art" by Juan Caruso.
27, 2017 - "I wish I could write as mysterious as
- Edgar Allan Poe
Gratuitous Kittiness: "Pssst. Are we there yet?"
Mewvie: Bengal snuggles.
Feline Art: "Subway
Waldemar van Kozak.
28, 2017 - "The cat does not negotiate with the mouse." -
Robert K. Massie
Gratuitous Kute Kittiness: "Actually, I was looking for something
in a pump."
Mewvie: Damn dog.
Feline Art: "iPad Cat"
by Waldemar van Kozak
has cat marking on face.
by Sara Barnes
Cats have all sorts of unusual markings on their fur, from “two
faces” to mind-bending optical illusions. One of the latest felines
to mesmerize us with their striking looks was recently spotted by Japanese
Twitter user @TOKAITRICK_bot, who noticed an adorably weird cat face
while out and about. The sweet creature is like two felines in one; it
has a marking on its face that looks just like another cat!
The motif is front and center on the feline’s face. It runs right
across the nose, and the marking bears an uncanny resemblance to a cat
that’s crouched on top of its legs. To make the silhouette even
more convincing, the shape includes pointed ears and a rounded hump.
The undeniable cat-on-cat spot is not only unique, but very meta, too.