How the Cookie Crumbles

An irreverant view of life after SIXTY-FIVE

I Was Born This Way


I’ll tell you how it happened. My daughter’s at fault for the second time.(a.k.a. Mrs. G., identity protected).

After a year or more, my daughter had a free Saturday and  time to check out garage sales. We packed up the kiddies early and off we drove. Not much was in the newspaper, but we hoped to find unadvertised sales along the way. The pickings were slim and I was the lone spender. I found two great books: Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons and The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch for fifty cents each.

Mrs. G. turned an unexpected corner and I asked where she was taking us. She smiled with a wicked grin on her face. We were in SPCA territory.

“It’s something new for the kids to do and  maybe we can check out current pricing,” she said. My grandkids were excited. (I mentioned a while back I might consider getting a kitten later—in the fall—maybe. Or, maybe not. My mistake.)

We watched a three-month-old kitten because the fuzz ball was entertaining. I liked its fur: various shades of pale grey like smoke and fog. The one and two-year-old cats had the forlorn look you see on television commercials advertising abused animals. I wanted to leave but my granddaughters weren’t ready yet.

I came across a handsome two-year-old grey cat, similar to the kitten but it slept on even when I knocked on the window. I didn’t want a cat that old anyway, already set in its habits. What? Hush up brain.

Another cat was sleeping faced away from the window. I saw a long, sausage squashed between the wall and the kitty litter box. Ug-ly, I thought, and joined the grandkids for a while, but wandered back again. The brindled (sausage) cat was awake. She came up to the window when I tapped it, giving the glass a welcoming body rub, looking up at me. In an instant, I fell in love. Something irritated my eyes. My daughter’s face showed surprise and the grandchildren looked worried.

No-one was more taken aback than me.  One-year-old Didi was mine. On the way home, we renamed her to Lady Gaga (my daughter’s suggestion). I was gaga over her. Look at her; she’s one of a kind!

Day three:  I feel we’re old friends already and I think Lady Gaga likes me. She plays well but misses me and jump onto my lap crying for attention. She initiates cuddling, cheek to cheek. I’ve accomplished next to nothing since Saturday. Last night I was trying to type while she slept, curled on my lap. Heaven.

~ * ~


The last time my daughter drove me to the SPCA was after she’d left home at seventeen. She worried I was lonely living by myself—I wasn’t. I didn’t want a cat; I missed her.

“Let’s just look,” she said. “Nothing wrong with looking, is there?”

I looked and was smitten seventeen years ago too. His name was changed to Crawford.

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Author: Let's CUT the Crap!

I'm getting a little LONG in the tooth and have things to say about---ouch---AGEing. I believe it's certainly a state of mind but sometimes it's nice to hear that you're NORMAL. I enjoy reading by the truckload. I'm a grandma but I don't feel OLD although I'm not so young anymore. My plan is to stick it out as long as I can on this lovely planet and only will leave it kicking and screaming!

75 thoughts on “I Was Born This Way

  1. Happy to hear of the new addition. Love the name, too. Happy snuggling.

  2. I brought I fish when I first moved to university and I must say it wasn’t great company, but my reasons were clear I needed something living and breathing (even underwater) in the presence of my house. To be honest it was one of the best things I did. Now I’ve got my eye set on a parrot, we’ll see what the future holds. Enjoy your new company!!

    • You are correct, company is company. Something to love and nurture. I’d love to hear about your parrot friend when you make that move. Lady Gaga is sleeping on my lap as I try to type this. Her head is on my right arm, making my progress on the keyboard rather s.l.o.w. Thank you for your story.

  3. Oh, Tess…if I could tell you the number of times one of us has said,”We’re just going to look” and returned with a new furry or feathered bundle…enjoy your new friend!

  4. Congratulations on your new family member!

    30 years ago, I drove my mom to the SPCA because she was (is) dog crazy but couldn’t bring herself to adopt one. She found “Heidi,” fell in love, and thanks me for taking her every time I see her.

  5. Furry friends are soooo special. Enjoy the new addition!

  6. Congrats on the new addition to your family. I’m sure she will bring you years of joy. My kids are after me to adopt a dog, but I’m not ready (yet). Maybe one day. Great post.

    • Thank you, Sylvia. When I come ‘downstairs’ from babysitting (upstairs), I no longer get that where-do-I-belong-feeling. Lady Gaga is on my lap again as I try to type this. You say you’re not ready (YET). I suppose this means the time WILL come when you will be—do share when it happens.

  7. Oh she is lovely, I love her fur. Brindle is beautiful! Fully understand your being smitten.

  8. Somehow kitties know who is meant to be their people mom. Lady Gaga found you. She is so cute. Such long whiskers. Happy days…

  9. Two years ago, a stranger (friend of a friend) sent me a photo of a kitten. I get these emails all the time because we already have a bunch of previously homeless cats. I am good at saying no now, because four is enough. But that kitten… I couldn’t get her out of my mind. So we ended up with five cats. And that kitten – Lillian – turned out to have a lot of horse in her!

  10. He’s a cutie. I’m in the thinking stage since our cat died. Don’t know if I want to add more headache to the house right now though. Enjoy!

    • I’ve been in the thinking stage too; maybe that’s why I was able to make a quick decision this past Saturday. Thanks for coming by, Angie. I waited too long to get another kitty and love having Lady Gaga to keep me company. When you’re ready… Nice to see you here. Thanks for dropping by.

  11. I had a dark tortoiseshell like lady gaga when my kids were little, she was the sweetest little cat ever!

  12. I’ve got it best. The landlords cat Larry comes running down the drive soon as I get home from work. She doesn’t come for food or crave attention but likes to curl at my feet as I sit at the desk or watch the TV. About bedtime she stands by the door and with one soft meow lets me know she is ready to go home. Companionship with no requirement of responsibility. Works for me.

  13. My pets fill my empty spaces too :)

  14. Oh Tess what a fabulous share! (sniff..sniff)

    I was just getting ready to call it a night (again) when I thought to myself, “I cannot try to sleep while wondering what it is that Tess was born with.” I’m so glad I did not wait until morning.

    I’ve been talking baby talk again. Our Truman is now almost 8 yrs old and he so needs a playmate. That’s what I keep yelling Bear. We have decided on getting a baby again, Like you I want one that is not set in it’s ways. I”m too old to change mine so a litten will adapt.

    I’m so looking forward to hearing more and more about your new frind and toddler, Lady Gaga. Love her name too by the by.

    Hugs to you both~ another catwoman

    • Hi (BB) Catwoman:
      I feel I’m gushing I’m so happy and came up with an idea: a cat journal as long as the days keep being interesting. It’s called, Journal – Life With Lady Gaga. I’m so excited. It’s ANOTHER writing project to add to my list but what the heck.

      Hope you get another baby. If you’re thinking about it, it will happen. Thanks for telling your story. I love pet tales.

      • Oh That’s fabulous Tess! I think I’ll be a follower for certain. I love pet stories too, especially cats stories. As my Truman lays on his couch back watching me type. Maybe he knows something is up….

  15. Congratulations on your new addition. Having just adopted a puppy two and half weeks ago from a shelter I understand the uncertainty that exists before one actually chooses a new pet. Once that has been accomplished all doubts fade away as the new baby settles into your home and your heart.

  16. Tess, you are a great storyteller. I really enjoyed reading this, and I think I would really like your daughter. What a sweetheart. Glad you and Lady Gaga found each other!

  17. She’s totally gorgeous, and there’s nothing like kittykat cuddles. Buddy and Clancy send their best to you and your new addition. :)

  18. I saw your link on Bucket List Publications and have added a link to your site on mine, too. Hope you stop by for a visit:

  19. I’ve always had cats, I find them so entertaining! Both of our current cats came to us because friends who owned them turned out to be allergic to them (two different friends!). Hope you have lots of fun and companionship with your newest addition.

  20. Oh!!!! What a beautiful story! I am so happy for you and Lady Gaga – and you all! Lovely Tess! :)

  21. Sounds like you’re heading for anything but a Bad Romance with Lady Gaga. Pretty soon we will have to call the Paparazzi for some more photos. Congratulations on the new addition!

  22. Oh, it sounds like you’re a real softie Tess :)
    Nothing better than a pet to come home to…

  23. Tess, pleased you have a little friendly bundle of fun! Cats are gorgeous animals who definitely have their own personalities when you get to know them! :D

    • She sure is a welcome companion. I’ve had cats for over thirty years off and on. This one is all personality and like a little kid off playing, runs in for hugs and attention off and on throughout the day. Gads, I can’t get anything done as she likes to sleep in my lap, flopped over my forearm, as I try to type. Nice seeing you, Tom. Thanks for stopping by.

  24. Aww, what a precious little kitty. And very fitting to name here Lady Gaga as you are ga-ga over her! Now Crawford has a friend… :)

  25. Your brindled cat is a very unusual pattern. No wonder you fell in love!

  26. I SO know what that is like, the cat my kids talked me into going to see at the pet store was with us for 21 years! Y ou don’t want to know about our gerbil story!

    • Your house sounds like the centre of the universe. I love cats and have had them for pets for over 30 years. Hmm, I’m a sucker for a story, any story, even your gerbil story…

      • Ok, here goes..when our kids were little we didn’t get the memo about how to say no when it came to pets. They came home from the pet store one day and asked if they could breed gerbils…for the pet store! We gave them the okay along with ALL responsibilities in the care of these critters. They used their own money, bought materials to build a couple cages. Etc
        Soon we were in full baby making business..gerbils coming out of our ying yang. And of course the pet store didn’t need them anymore. We were up to SEVENTY FOUR! Sigh, how much space do I have for this? then it was time to separate the girls from the boys..this story is hysterical in person!

      • I don’t know the difference between gerbils and hampsters. My daughter had the latter and we had a population after population explosion till it’s wasn’t funny anymore. Your story sounds more hysterical. Nice talking to you Kathy. Tess

      • Gerbils are smaller…more mouse like. It was especially fun when some escaped and got into the duct work. My hubby really liked that! :)

      • Ahhh. I’m sure that was fun! Ha ha.

      • We must think a bit alike…I just realized that you cut the crap and I just blogged about bear poop.

        It’s all good. :)

      • In my book too. You’ve made my day.

      • This blogging thing is so much fun! I am learning as I go. It has only been a few weeks. I can’t get over the audience, they are popping up all over the world! What a great opportunity to express ourselves through the written word. Still figuring it out.


      • I just wrote to share this funny story with you but it might have been too long, so I am not sure that you received it. But yes, the center of the universe is a good description of our home!

      • I love to hear a home is the centre of the universe: warm, cozy, loving, full of laughter, people and pet. Heartwarming.

  27. She is beautiful. Wow. I miss Outlaw. We had 16 years together. I still do not have the heart to get another one.

  28. I never had much fondness for cats until one adopted me…. Now I adore them…. they are very affectionate creatures and opinionated too…. Yours is growing to reduce you to catloving puddles…

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