Book Signing in Santa Monica

Looking for something fun and bookish to do on Saturday 10/29? Drop by my book signing in Santa Monica, CA! It's all part of National Cat Day, which is appropriate since my book is about my cat.

Stay for 5 minutes, 25 minutes, 105 minutes, or however long you like. And pick up a signed copy of How My Cat Made Me a Better Man while you're at it. Hope to see you there!

  • Saturday, October 29, 2016
  • 12:00 to 4:00 pm (PT)
  • Barnes & Noble - 1201 3rd Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401
  • Get details and attend!

Cat Box Office Mojo

photo credit:   ScypaxPictures   (unmodified)

photo credit: ScypaxPictures (unmodified)

Cats purchased 45% more movie tickets in 2016 compared to all of 2015. Some analysts attribute this to increasingly plush, scratchable theatre seats. Others say it's because of the rise in theatre rodent population. The truth though, is that cats enjoy seeing themselves represented on the big screen.

In the past three months alone, we've seen a cat cop in Zootopia, Shere Khan the tiger in The Jungle Book, and Keanu in Keanu. Feline audiences flocked to all three films. Coincidence? Hollywood studio heads don't think so, as they rush to give cats roles that would too often go to humans. Plotlines are even being rewritten to accurately portray the cultural experiences of cats. Just look at these upcoming films:

The Purge: Catmageddon: One night each year, all dog-on-cat crime becomes legal and vet services go dark. So when impetuous teenage cats Smokey and Whiskers get stranded on the rottweiler side of town, they're forced to do whatever it takes to make it till morning.

Cat-fe Society: Woody Allen's latest film is a comic exploration of Boots, a neurotic young cat with a penchant for 1930's jazz music. When he's not sharing his litter box anxiety with his psychiatrist, he's dwelling on his fear of losing all nine lives.

Finding Dory's Cat: This Finding Nemo spinoff raises many questions. Where is Dory the fish? Where is her cat? Why does a fish have a cat?

Cat Bourne: Mr. Mittens barely remembers his past, when he was raised in a shoebox and trained to be the ultimate feline assassin. Now on the run, he's taking out all the humans who wronged him, wielding his nails like his life depended on it. Watch out, bad guys. This kitten's got claws.

The Legend of Pit Cat

A few years ago, a construction crew knocked down the apartment building directly behind mine. The land was cleared of debris. Massive whirring machines came in and dug a large pit where the building used to stand. I anticipated that soon, the pit would be swarming with construction people in yellow hats, laying the foundation for a new building. But the construction people never came. Instead, I was left with a lovely balcony view of a large, empty dirt pit.

The pit.

The pit.

One day, just above the far end of the pit, I saw something gray move through the overgrown grass. It was a cat. For the next few weeks, I'd see him lounging in the sun, batting leaves around, and crawling under the one piece of the torn-down building that was left behind. This was Pit Cat.

Pit Cat found his place -- his home -- in the rubble of another home that was demolished. And he was happy. He didn't need much. It's Southern California, so he didn't have to worry about bad weather. He must have had access to food too, since he seemed pretty healthy. At least as far as I could tell from the distance of my apartment.

I got in the habit of looking out the window for Pit Cat as I'd pour my morning coffee. Occasionally I'd spot him playing in the pit, then be amazed as he somehow managed to bounce his way back out. After all, the pit was pretty deep.

After a rainstorm, I didn't see Pit Cat for a few days. So I decided to check on him to make sure he was okay. I hopped the fence to the empty lot, then traversed the edge above the pit. There was Pit Cat, tucked behind a piece of wood. As soon as he saw me, he freaked out and dove under some bushes. He was terrified, but at least I knew he was okay.

I never returned to the pit, fearful of spoiling Pit Cat's tranquility. But I can still watch him from a distance. I'm sure one day, they'll construct a new building over that empty dirt pit. Until then, that's Pit Cat territory.