Hazey asked me to tell you that she hates kittens.
Hazey asked me to tell you that she is, and I quote, “punk rock.”
Hazey asked me to tell you that she is so punk rock, the earth opens up and releases dinosaurs when she walks by.
Hazey asked me not to tell you that she weighed 14.44 pounds.
Far be it from me to betray a confidence, but I am confident I’m on the side of the angels here.
You can hear the habanero half of Hazey’s story plenty of other places.
There’s Hazey’s history: surrendered to a shelter for crimes against humanity. Hazey does not repudiate her record. Hazey stands by her hypothesis that toddlers are tasty. Hazey understands her culinary preferences may have caused some stormy weather. Hazey says sunny days and straightforward fairy tales are overrated.
There’s Hazey’s psychological profile. We attempted to entertain her with a Myers-Briggs inventory, but all the letters jumped in the alphabet soup and tried to swim away. She is an Enneagram 444. She is the arcane Jungian archetype “The Punk Rocket.” She is in the 99.9th percentile of intelligence. She is in an undisclosed percentile of emotional intelligence. And on the peer-reviewed psychiatric metrics found on Buzzfeed, she tested 0% Celine Dion, 24% olive loaf, and 170% Samuel L. Jackson.
There is Hazey’s wardrobe. She wears a safety-orange collar on your behalf. This is Tabby’s Place’s early warning system for felines who favor fingers (first choice: human, second: chicken, third: fish, unless tartar sauce is involved, in which case they will reevaluate). This is a fashionable indication that Hazey has curious teeth and a sizzly fuse. This is a necklace for a neon personality.
There is Hazey’s minimalism. While she may wear more jewelry than the average cat, she keeps a tidy house. Her closets have been swept of sentimentality. If your eyes mist over in her presence, she will turn up The Ramones until you calm down. If you gush about her beauty or glurge about her courage in the face of adversity, she will make barf faces and put her paws in her ears while going “noiny noiny noiny noin.”
There is Hazey’s signage. “Staff only.” “Caution.” “I like my space and treats.”
All the signs point to a dinosaur behind green eyes.
But I’m here to tell you that Hazey weighed in at 14.44 pounds.
This is not a throwaway detail. (If a living being is involved, there are no throwaway details.) This is a break in the fog, a break in the case, a break in the grimace that is really only a get-up.
Since the time our species realized fingers are for counting, the number four has swaggered with significance. It represents the solid and the sturdy. It can be touched and felt.
It is stubbornly associated with angels.
And whatever you may hear, we have an earthy, agitated seraph in stripes.
Don’t let the mist and mischief make you walk into walls. We see Hazey clearly.
We see a cat who chooses every color in the crayon box. We see both the bonfire and the melty marshmallow. We see those serious stripes curve into smiles. We see Hazey glance in our direction and grin.
We blink and rub our eyes. We open them and somehow love Hazey even more. We count the ways. We run out of fingers (human, chicken, and fish). She runs into the hallway and lets us catch her, this time.
We accept our sentence of smittenness.
We weigh affection and break the scale. It’s all very punk rock after all.