It's quite early in the morning and I've just met, as I do every day at this hour, my cat Rose in my office. Apart from our broader, deeper relationship, we are partners at Outlier Entertainment, my small independent entertainment firm, and we work the same long shift every day sitting facing each other across the room.
The Outlier Entertainment logo shown below might also be called "Portrait of Rose" because the concepts it illustrates -- an "object situated away from other main bodies" and "a person whose residence and place of business are at a distance" -- pretty well describes Rose's status and position in space vis-a-vis the other members of our household. As the needlepoint pillow inscription clearly states, Rose prefers to be alone than in bad company.
Outlier Entertainment Group logo
Rose is a kind, serious and, obviously, beautiful creature. She is 13 now, our oldest cat. She and her sister Pansy were the first cats we adopted after finally losing our dear U and Santa. It is always difficult and confusing beginning a new family after a hard loss, but we were luckier than we ever imagined or could have hoped for, meeting and joining up with these two beautiful and spirited sisters from Nashville who were very close, but utterly different in personality.
Rose and Pansy as kittens climbing up my leg at 510 East 86th Street, New York, New York
Rose has never been wholly supportive of our large-scale cat adoption program, although she has tolerated it. She has old-fashioned good manners and a dramatic sense of decorum (the kind you only see in 1930s black & white "high society" movies or theater revivals these days) and she chooses her friends carefully. She is by no means a snob. Although she loves Claude, our family's aristocrat cream-colored Persian with the "Burke's Peerage" set of bloodlines, she has equal affection for our large tabby Eddie, who lived outside for several years in dire conditions, exposed to harsh weather, everyday danger and disease. Her feelings about the others range from (sometimes amused) indifference for the "kids" (Bunny, Junior, and Princess Daisy) and the several ferals who stay in the basement, to quiet hostility for Felix, our bruiser, mostly Maine Coon male, who I like quite a bit, but admit is deficient in the "going along to get along" department.
Spicy Detective Stories, July 1942, "Blood for the 'Bat-Girl'"
Caroline felt that my post about Rose last weekend, which I intended to be a pure portrait-plus-title moment, provided readers kind enough to visit this page insufficient detail regarding this remarkable girl and I agree. You would all definitely love mysterious Rose. Apart from her unique Bat-Girl mask, deep green eyes and even deeper purr, her speaking voice, which has a unique "tearing paper set to music" quality, both guides you around the house like a flashlight in the dark and provides constant and ample food for thought. Rose really holds up her end of the conversation.
Outside of Nashville, Tennessee (Leiper's Fork), where Rose and Pansy were born
Not only is Rose the first thing I see in the morning and the last thing I see at night, but she was also the first element of our new family life that Jane experienced when we returned from China in the fall of 1998. We were very slightly worried that our infant daughter might either be allergic to or not care for cats, but when we opened the apartment door that night on East 86th Street after weeks in Asia, and Rose and Pansy, also babies still, greeted us, the look of surprise and cry of delight from Jane and the chorus of their three voices are things we will never forget and will always be grateful for.
You are dismissed.