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The posts are in reverse chronological order, and are pegged by topic on the links to the left. For more of an introduction, please see the About this site page listed above.

Monday, 30 September 2019

That Time We Got to Meet Lil Bub!

Hello and welcome! Today's post continues recounting my latest adventure in Canada and the US, this time focusing on a very special cat!

**Special note**
This blog post is about...oh...5 months late. No serious reason why, just the usual, life, work, etc. I'm working on trying to catch up, and I want to thank you for sticking around, but don't worry, all is well. With that, let's get back to our irregularly scheduled program :)

A few years ago, Juliette shared an image with me. That image was of Lil Bub, a famous Internet cat, in the same vein as Grumpy Cat (hope you're resting well among the clouds).

At the time, I didn't think much of it. The cat was cute, it made my fiancée happy, win-win. However, as Juliette shared more images with me, I began to learn more about this one-of-a-kind kitty.

Lil Bub has a number of medical issues which, besides being difficult to deal with, have the side effect of making her very cute. Dwarfism, osteopetrosis (too much calcium), a short lower jaw, toothlessness, extra digits on her paws, all add up to a cute cat with extra large eyes, and a tongue that is always out. Her owner, Mike, not only takes very good care of her, but he has worked with Lil Bub to raise a lot of money for the care and protection of animals. 

Lil Bub has a ton of merchandise, including books, shirts, even a few award-winning short films and documentaries. She makes appearances at conventions, and she even has her own band and TV show! Proceeds from all of this go toward the ASPCA and other charities. 

Over the past few years, I have come to learn more and more about this cat. Juliette follows her Facebook page, and besides having a regular refreshment of cuteness, we have watched as the cat appeared on Good Morning America, even Japanese TV!

Bub has even become part of our home. Juliette is allergic to most cats, so a few years ago, I bought her a Bub plushie and stickers and things, and we delight in moving the cat around, imagining her enjoying life with us.

So, when we were planning our trip to the US to visit a friend in Indiana, Juliette gently reminded me that Lil Bub wasn't too far away...

I emailed Bub's owner. That was one heck of an email, I must say. I spend a lot of time and energy here, at work, on Twitch, practicing the art of composure, of framing myself well, and this was yet another opportunity. I mean, how do you email a complete stranger and basically say, "Hello, we like you and your cat, we'll be in the state next month, can we come visit? Also, we're not crazy."

For a while, I heard nothing. I thought, well, I tried, it's fair. But then, he answered! We worked out the details and it was all set! We were going to meet Lil Bub!

As I said, I have grown to love Lil Bub over the years because of the work her owner has done. Here is a cat who has several medical issues, and an owner who takes really good care of her. Has he profited from his cat? Well, not sure if profit really is the right word, as I'm sure the time and effort and medical expenses even things out, but yes, he has made money with her, and donated at least a majority of that money to charity. As I told him in my email, I am just happy to see someone doing something so productive, so positive, in this world we live in. Plus, Juliette's birthday was coming up, and this was the perfect gift!

Getting there was a bit of an issue. Lil Bub lives an hour's drive away from Indianapolis and, because it's America, the only way to get there was by renting a car. That last statement is fueled by my earlier experience in Houston a few years ago, where there was no available public transit outside of the city, and taxis would literally NOT show up, even if you called ahead.

Anyway, so we had to rent a car, and that process almost made me go crazy, which you can read about here. In the end, it worked out, and we traveled down to meet Lil Bub and her owner.

It was a nice visit. Juliette got to meet and hold Lil Bub, and Bub was nice and friendly and curious about us. Mike was a nice guy, and we traded stories about pets, and about living in France. In the end, Juliette gifted him a painting she had done, which is still one of my favourite pieces.

I probably say that about most of her work, but I am always impressed by my fiancée's ability to capture the essence of something, and represent it exactly how she wants. It was a lovely painting, and Mike seemed happy about it.

So, there you have it! Now you know a little more about Lil Bub! I hope this post has been a nice breath of fresh, positive air! On a side note, Juliette and I finally found a cat she is not allergic to, and he has lived with us for just over two months!

His name is Lazarus, and you can find more photos and videos here. It's a grey Sphinx, very cute, very loving, and we're excited to add to our family here! I grew up around cats and dogs, but this will be the first pet I have owned, not just a family pet.

Thank you very much for stopping by! Next time, we'll talk about a bunch of animals, as we take a tour of the Indianapolis zoo!

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