Certain pairings work if you don’t overthink them.
Target and Missoni. Pickles and peanut butter. Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett. Gatsby and Artex.
Actually, those last two couplings have more in common than you might think. (Sorry, pickles and peanut butter; nothing compares to you.)
One is timeless and classy in an old-Hollywood, easy-listening, so-talented-you-could-swoon kinda way. He loves the way you look tonight. Tuxedos aren’t made to fit him; he was born to fit a tuxedo. He’s equally at home on MTV and at the Knights of Columbus.
The other is bold, blonde, and more than a little bananas. You’re aware of his presence as soon as you’re within 15 miles (unless you have a telescope, in which case you’re aware of his presence as soon as you’re within 15 galaxies). He makes his living off of making a scene. It’s not at all clear that he’s from our planet.
Gatsby. Artex. It’s a very quirky sort of combination…but it works.
Coming to us with buddies Brooklyn, Campana and Conga, Gatsby’s been the classy kind from day one. After a brief bout of shyness and an unfortunate stint in the pit of stench for ringworm, Gatsby settled in as the Tony Bennett of Suite C. Tuxed up and ready to croon at all times, our smooth soul won the hearts of more than a few ladies.
But his heart rang as true as middle C: he only has eyes for his best girl, Brooklyn. Often, cats who love cats will love any cats at all, rolling with the changes and making new friends as their old buddies are adopted or relocated. Not so our crooner. After three weeks in ringworm isolation, Gatsby only had Brooklyn on his mind, and made a beeline for the skittish grey girl. When Brooklyn had her own extended exile due to emergency eye surgery, Gatsby waited patiently. Upon her return, it was as though they’d never parted. Gatsby never forgot the art of romance. This lady was no tramp. I promise I’ll stop now.
So where does a big, blonde space oddity fit into Gatsby’s love-song-y good life?
We were all in for a surprise when Artex lumbered into Suite C. It would be enough if he was simply the brightest-orange cat we’ve ever seen. It would be enough if he merely weighed 870 pounds. It would be enough if he loved with all the gusto of 55 kindergarteners amped up on espresso. Artex was all of this things plus a silly sort of self-confidence that just made everyone giggle. You can’t be in the big guy’s presence and not feel the laugh of happiness overtaking your heart.
Many large cats are simply large; Artex is weirdly and wonderfully large, bulging out in the middle like he’s wearing a giant internal doughnut around his waist (assuming there is a waist in there somewhere). He’s shaped like one of those bumpy, no-two-are-alike gourds on sale at farmers’ markets this time of year. While others are busy occupying Wall Street, Artex occupies every space he inhabits by the sheer force of his hugeness.
Many cats love to rub up against your legs; Artex loves to engage in a personal demolition derby, heaving his mighty self into you until you either (a) surrender to his awesomeness and moosh him for the rest of your day, or (b) fall over, at which time he will have to consume you. (No, no, I’m making that up. Mostly.)
So what in the world would this goofball have to do with the classy character that was Gatsby? As it turns out…a lot.
In the company of Artex, Gatsby’s gaga side comes out to play. The tuxie who is normally content dreamily grooming Brooklyn and singing about love gets all wild-eyed with Artex, rolling and wrestling and risking his mortal life (would you wrestle someone 87 times your size and crazy?). Around Gatsby, Artex shows remarkable restraint. He doesn’t wear his meat suit or arrive in a spaceship on days he plays with Gatsby. He also doesn’t crush Gatsby to powder with his incredible heft – and that, in itself, calls for enormous restraint. Classy guy, that Artex.
Classy, kooky pair, those boys. Some matches are just ordained to be…odd.