Every so often I would see that there had been a cat fashion show in New York where cats were in costumes and looked peeved. Despite my love of kitties I had little or no interest in seeing felines dressed in festive ensembles traipsing down a runway. However, recently I “liked” the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals Facebook feed and therefore I see their posts. One of their posts was this:
Now this is different. My entry fee goes to support beasties in need, I get to go inside the Algonquin Hotel, a national treasure of a building, AND I get to see haute couture kittehs? Well, now I’m totally in. I bought myself a ticket and when I told The Moomins I was going she said, “You got me a ticket too, right?” I was like, “No, do you want to go?” and she was all, “HELL YES I want to go” so off we went. Shortly after we got to the hotel we were greeted by Matilda, the house cat of the Algonquin.
People went CRAZY. They all ran up to her, begging her to face this way, banging the concierge phone on the counter to get her attention. Here’s a shocker: she would have none of it.
I love how in this picture where The Moomins is talking to her, Matilda looks all, “Do I know you?”
There were a ton of professional photographers there. I just brought my cellphone so all my pictures look like they were taken with a potato. If any of the pictures I show here look good it’s because they were taken by someone with a real camera and I wrote their names in the corners so they would get credit.
The cat show was upstairs and didn’t start for another fifteen or twenty minutes so in the meantime The Moomins and I wandered around the ground floor. Set up were gift bags for the raffle, various foodstuffs like crudites and fancy cheeses and an enormous cake with (I’m sad to say, extremely poor) renditions of Matilda and Tara, the cat that rescued that little boy a few months ago. The LEDs in the base were a nice touch, though.
We eventually worked our way upstairs to the actual fashion show. I don’t know what I expected. Maybe a runway or something. It turned out to be various cats perched on pillows wearing costumes inspired by Broadway shows. Their emotions ranged from, “Eh, it could be worse” to “This is WAAAAAAY too many people” to “Please, if you have any compassion in your heart kill me now and end this living nightmare.” First you encountered Vito who was sleeping for most of the time he was on display. He was the chillest cat ever.
Behind him was a cat dressed as the lead from Legally Blonde. The owner informed me that this was totally appropriate because this cat was raised by a chihuahua who adopted him as a kitten when she lost all her pups (Elle, the main character of Legally Blonde has her chihuahua with her all the time). He was also calm, but I think he would have preferred to have slightly less people flashing lightbulbs in his face.
There was the Persian representing Wicked.
There was a black cat who was Roxy Hart from Chicago and he wanted to leave so badly his owner had to keep her hand under the skirt area to keep the little guy from fleeing.
Off to the side was the Rock of Ages cats, Tigger and Cody:
And off in the far corner was two cats representing… something with turquoise and argyle. One was a Savannah and he was sleeping and the other was a wee kitten with yellow eyes and he was full of the frisky.
In the library was Tara, the cat that rescued the little boy from the attacking dog. This cat. As I entered the room Tara stalked across the carpet and hid under the tablecloth.
But he best part for me, without a doubt, was when a woman showed up late all flustered and I realized she was wearing two cats, one on her shoulder and one in a baby sling.
I have a weak spot for gray cats so I immediately fell in love with sling-cat whose name, I found out later, is R2D2 because of the wee beeping noises he makes. In addition both these cats are ancient and really shouldn’t have to go through this stupid and humiliating endeavor. Wearing costumes is a young kitty’s game. These elderly fellas should be playing shuffleboard in Florida. But here they were and it was about to get real rough for them.
R2D2 was then dressed as The Phantom of the Opera and Orange Cat Who’s Name I Never Caught was the Phantom’s Angel of Music. Orange Cat seemed moderately tolerant of this but R2D2 immediately went into some kind of sadness trance and stared at, nay, through, the carpet for the next hour. I think he was willing himself to die. People petted him, cameras went off in his face, he didn’t care. He was convincing the Grim Reaper to drop on by and help him shuffle off this mortal coil. I’m a bad person because I may or may not have laughed until tears rolled down my face at the utter pitifulness of R2D2. I’m not proud of that, but it’s the truth.
OH GOD NOT THE MASK HASN’T HE SUFFERED ENOUGH
I didn’t purchase any raffle tickets so The Moomins and I split after we petted all the cats that would let us and munched some cheese. It was a nice experience and I would go again to give funds to a worthy cause but once you’ve seen a bunch of cats in costumes you’re kind of good with that for a long time.