What’s cute and tiny and shimmies all over?
I’ll give you one more clue: she has more spots than a pimply teenager and all 101 dalmatians combined.
Stumped? It’s the newest lobby cat, and she was born to dance. Behold the wonder of Molly.
As tiny as she looks in these pictures, she’s tinier. As pink as her nose appears, it’s pinker. (Like, Energizer-Bunny-plus-frosted-Valentine’s-donut pink.) She’s covered in speckles that shimmer with an oce-lotta beauty. (If my moral compass were a little looser, I might even say she’s a Bengal or an Ocicat or something else fancy-pants. People are always mad about fancy-pants cats. But Molly needs no creative exaggeration or poetic license to be special. As for fancy-pants, well, this is how we feel about trousers at Tabby’s Place. But I digress.)
Even if she weren’t beautiful (she is) and she didn’t have the personality of 100,000,000 marshmallow-covered angels (she does), Molly would be special. Because Molly…dances.
A vet might have a different term for what Molly does. A vet, bearing years of hard-won education and knowledge and wisdom and a far less-dotty brain than I, would say that Molly has cerebellar hypoplasia. I say she’s got the soul of a ballerina. The truth is, she’s got both.
Like Edward, Bronx and Tumbles before her, Molly is a “CH baby.” This likely means her mama had distemper while mini-Molly was growing in her womb, which glopped up the normal processes of brain-growing. Molly, therefore, never grew a proper cerebellum. In addition to looking like a miniature cauliflower and sounding cool (cerebellum, cerebellum, can ya smell ’em…), the cerebellum is responsible for a little thing called balance. But, as far as Molly’s concerned, the fancy-pants cats can keep their balance. All she wants to do is dance.
Her photos don’t do her justice, but, truly, when Molly moves – in her own wacky, wobbly, un-cerebellummy way – she looks like she is dancing. I have never seen such a thing, in all the CH cats we’ve adored at Tabby’s Place. They each have a movement and a step all their own, but none before Molly has been so…magical. Inspired. Lyrical, even.
That’s all very nice, but Molly’s dance takes on a different sparkle when you hear what her pre-Tabby’s Place life looked like. For most of her 3-ish years, Molly lived in a cage, in a hoarding situation. In a way, that’s a cage inside a cage, with no windows onto hope. She’s only been on this side of happiness for a month or so now, but she’s wasted no time in getting on with the business of living and dancing.
And happy? Oh, heaven, is Molly happy. She could do without the encroachments of Gingko (who is still learning that looking like a lion does not entitle one to the undisputed role of King of the Lobby). But, 99.9% of the time, our little oci-not is as happy as…well, as happy as a little girl in a tutu whose parents love her twirls, however awkward and “freestyle.”
A confession is necessary at this point. I still watch Saved by the Bell. No, no, not that confession. I am a failed ballerina myself. Twice, as a mini-Angela, I tried with all my might to do the ballet-lessons thing. Twice, I was so spastic and uncoordinated and clodhoppery that it…just didn’t happen. I didn’t stop wanting it. I’ll probably never stop wanting it. I’ll definitely never stop wearing bubble-gum pink and ballet flats and dancing (badly) in my kitchen every chance I get. But the ballerina in me exults to see Molly dance. There’s no standard or judgment or strictness to Molly’s loping step, and we see her exclusively through the eyes of love.
Turns out, we human beans aren’t the only ones with the looooove bug for Molly. When Molly first cleared Quarantine, her smitten admirer Danielle whisked her into the Community Room for some extra love and snuggles. With all the doting of the Mother of the Year, Danielle tenderly put together a “crib” of sorts, lining a laundry basket with fluffy blankets. It was so inviting, it was pretty hard not to crawl on in myself. But Molly didn’t want to sleep.
All she wants to do is dance.
As she did, a magnificent thing happened. First Tashi, then Bialy followed her, keeping at a respectful distance as she dance-explored her surroundings. But, even as they gave Moll a caring berth, there was no mistaking it: these boys were in lurrrrve. I hear Tashi is going to use his very best glitter-glue to make her a Valentine. If he plays his cards right, maybe she’ll choose him as her lord of the dance.
Valentine’s Day happy-dance party, anyone?