The multi-billionaire

The multi-billionaire

He would drive a hatchback, not a Lamborghini.

He would eat boxed mac n’ cheese, not truffled oysters.

But Gomez‘s billionaire mustache will always give him away.

So it’s a very good thing that our eccentric genius is tucked away in rural New Jersey, far from those who would only love him for his riches.

You can’t blame Gomez for being a bit overwhelmed. He’s a “gee-shucks” kinda guy whose pride would fit in a pocket. He looks in the water bowl and sees an ordinary cat.

He finds the sight reassuring. His one request is to be “just one of the folks.”

Gomez loves the folks. The folks are all creatures of goodwill. Some folks are feline, and some folks wear pants. Gomez does not understand pants. But when your ego is small, you know how little you understand. You can stand before comets or khakis and be humbled by mystery. You are a child of the universe, just one of the folks.

But sooner or later, you have nowhere to hide your riches. You may burrow under blankets or purse your lips when people pet you, but the world will know. Behind your twirly mustache are a million million muches.

That is “much,” plural. Gomez is made entirely of muches. We don’t know how he does it.

His affections must be acrobatic to fit inside a medium-sized cat. Gomez ripples with romance. He is a barometer for human patience. Give him time to trust you, and he will give himself to you entire.

If you wait for him to meet your gaze, he will never look away. If you extend the meaty side of your hand to smell, holding it steady while he marinates in the offer, he will give you the filet mignon of his tenderness.

He may even tell you that he wants Tom Selleck to play him in the movie, although he promises not to try to sell you a reverse mortgage.

His compassions are platinum, studded with sapphire sympathies. Gomez cringes only because he knows what feelings weigh. You cannot hide behind a half-smile with this cat. He will not huddle behind his facial hair when he sees sadness sprint behind your laugh. Empathy has made him too elegant to be ordinary.

His courage is the coin of the realm, though he may hide under the throne.

There is a wealth only granted on the far side of loss. There are riches only given to those who grieve.

Gomez is a billionaire because he was loved without reservation.

Gomez is a ragamuffin because death stole his reservation.

Before Tabby’s Place, Gomez had a standing date with a person of his own. Their mutual devotion was like a corner booth at a diner. They were two straws in one milkshake. They were Roy Orbison on the jukebox. They were tycoons in the currency of “each other,” which is finally the only currency that matters.

Gomez was robbed by the only bandit who can take almost everything.

But Gomez is still rich, because Gomez was once loved.

If you have been loved, even once, you will never be empty again. You may hide behind your own face. You may mourn every chin-skritch as a prelude to grief’s sequel. But sooner or later, love will place you back atop the throne. You will rise up to a new standing reservation.

You will breathe the pure oxygen of “again.” Love is capable of everything except only coming around once.

So we shall keep Gomez’s secret.

We will ride down the streets of his story in a hatchback with a duct-taped bumper, and leave the oysters for kittens who pretend they are kings. But at night, we will smile in the shy eyes of the bashful billionaire. We understand so little, but love is paying our way.

Oh yes, one last thing about Gomez…

…he went to his forever home today.

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