A discussion on Eschaton about being owed a party to celebrate the formal awarding of the Ph.D. diploma--arguably the zenith of 'studentry' as a profession--prompted this reflection:
Re: PhD party (phoneticaly equivalent: pity party?)
A young cat followed me home from a walk around the neighborhood, when I went out to smoke a joint and get away from the nattering family, which was the extent of my PhD degree party: Mother and Daddy sparring as they did for--finally--57 years.
We named the cat Annie (coincident with my phd party was the anniversary of the wedding of the last ex-mrs/dr/prof* wgg and your obed' srv't; hence "Annie"--it seemed to fit better than 'Doc' or something). She was black, luxuriantly long-haired. We were soulmates. She followed me around the house like a puppy, though she was easily a year old when we met.
She'd wait for me on the countertop while i was in the shower; when I'd open the door, she'd wait til I wrapped a towel around my shoulders, then she'd climb carefully to my shoulder and begin (patiently, it seeme to me) to lick the water from my beard. Every morning, we enacted this ritual.
I always suspected we had known one another in previous lives, somewhere, neither as human nor cat...
She died (this time) in the fall of 2005.
The last time I saw her was the year before that, in California. The lemdp*-wgg moved there in 2001, with three or four (still) of our Baton Rouge cats. One, named 'miggle', still survives, and quite well, than you. The lemdp*-wgg will inform me directly upon Miggle's inevitable passing. She's 17, too.