Making a New Friend

A cat stuck her head in my coffee this morning.

It was a little past ten o’clock. I fixed myself a mug of coffee, picked up my Rubik’s Cube, and went to sit outside and enjoy my coffee on a glorious Saturday morning.

As I sat outside, I scrambled my Rubik’s Cube and proceeded to solve it. (Using an “edge’s first” method, for the record.) My coffee sat beside me on the concrete, and from time to time I reached down, picked it up, and took a swallow.

One of the feral cats that lives in the complex — a tuxedo cat, not very old, and very scrawny — came out of the bushes, walked along the wall directly at me, and ducked under my chair.

The next thing I know, she has her face in my coffee mug!

“Coffee is not for kitties!” I exclaimed. I reached down, picked up my coffee mug, and the cat didn’t go anywhere.

We’re not supposed to feed the feral cats, but she clearly was in need of sustenance, so I went inside to the kitchen, got a dish and some milk… and when I turned around she was standing just inside my door (which I had left open). She ran back out as I approached, and I put the dish on the concrete, far enough away from my chair that she wouldn’t likely feel threatened by me while I drank my coffee and fiddled more with the Rubik’s Cube.

Of course, I spilled milk all over the concrete. And the spilled milk was what she went for first. Only when she’d cleaned that up did she go for the dish.

Tuxedo cat drinking milk from a bowl set outside
Who’s a good kitty?

After a few minutes, she decided she was done and she went back whence she came.

Ten minutes later, she decided she wasn’t done, because she came back for what was left.

Tuxedo cat drinking milk from a dish outside my apartment
Awww, pretty kitty.

The way she stood this time I could reach out and touch her easily, and she didn’t flinch when I did.

For a cat that lives outdoors, she was very soft.

By this point, I had finished my coffee, so after moving the dish, I went inside and made more coffee.

When I returned, she’d made herself at home in my chair.


She’s very friendly. I was able to pet her more, and she appears to have nursed a litter recently.

She moved on eventually, though she was lurking near the apartment in the evening.

In the afternoon, I went to explore a Lutheran church cemetery in Adams County, just across the border from York County in Abbottstown where family six and seven generations back are buried.

Before I left, I noticed that the odometer on my Beetle has passed 200,000 miles.

My Beetle's dashboard, showing a speed of 8 mph, an empty tank, 0 RPMs, and 200,896 miles.

It must have happened three weeks ago. I didn’t notice.

No, I did not take this photo when the car was moving. Yes, the speedometer says I was travelling eight miles an hour. But the speedometer reads that when I’m in park. It’s off by eight miles. So when I have the speedometer at 80, I’m really travelling about 72.

No one told me there would be math when I’m driving.

Published by Allyn Gibson

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

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