Tag: animals

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The Cats of University Heights: Cupcake

Feline sightings along Mission Cliffs Drive are fairly rare. Since the series started in October 2016, only two have been profiled: Aylin and Fraidy. Meet a third! So there’s no misunderstanding: This Tuxedo-like furball is grey not the traditional black—and, as you can see, quite handsome.

I shot the Featured Image and its companion on July 13, 2018 using Leica M10 and Summarit-M 1:2.4/50 lens. Vitals: f/4, ISO 200, 1/250 sec, 50mm; 6:25 p.m. PDT. The other, taken one-minute later and after he stretched out, is same except for 1/180 sec shutter speed. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Friends

We follow up Georgia Twain with another pair. But the two are one less than they should be. I typically see three cats in the same apartment courtyard, on Florida between Meade and Monroe, but typically too far back for meaningful portrait. I stalked the trio for six months before capturing a shot of these, ah, Friends on July 14, 2018. They sat relatively close to the sidewalk.

The three live a few houses down from Lucy and diagonally across the way from Mew and Wonder. I will be lucky to ever get a usable portrait of the third or distinguish it from the other black. But I will try and update appropriately. 

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Luci Lost and Found

Some stories can’t be left behind, even if their telling is delayed. That is the case with Luci, who was featured in my “Cats of University Heights” series about three months ago. She disappeared on June 1, 2018. The following afternoon I saw on the NextDoor social network posting “Did anyone lose an elderly Tortise Shell cat?”, from about three hours earlier.

Verbatim: “I saw her Friday morning, June 1, (yesterday) walking very slowly on Florida street between Meade and Mission. She was heading north and looked disoriented and lost. Definitely an elderly kitty, based on how slowly she was moving. I was in the car and late to work, so could not stop to help her. Please is she someone’s lost kitty?” I immediately thought of Luci, with some frustration. Had the women posted 24 hours earlier, I could have searched for cat. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Gazers

Yesterday, while walking along Mississippi Street between Meade and Monroe, I spotted a pair of kitties looking at birds. They are the twenty-seventh and twenty-eighth window watchers featured in the series so far. They presented poses that were irresistibly poignant.

I assume these are indoor beasties, but they do wear collars with tags, indicating perhaps some outdoor excursions. The Featured Image, which is modestly cropped, sets the scene. The two companions close in on the putty-tats. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Fluff

Oh my, this is the 200th profile since the series started in October 2016. I expected a month time-frame, never imagining that in a dog neighborhood there would be so many cats. Our friendly feline also is third in a row from Alabama and twenty-fourth featured from that street. The two recent others: Maxie and Striker.

Yesterday, while walking with my wife, I spotted the presumed Maine Coon between Howard and Polk. Fluff is appropriate nickname, don’t you think? The kitty stayed put long enough for me to get the farther Featured Image and to move in closer for the companion. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Maxie

Call me flabbergasted. Four days after seeing Striker, along Alabama between Mission and Madison, my wife and I encountered Maxie and his owner on the same block. The tabby is the twenty-third profiled from the street, and—gasp—another, spotted earlier today, will be next up.

Maxie came to his 71-ish caretaker about 24 months ago. The feline started hanging around, even though he technically belong to neighbors. They left about a year later, and the kitty stayed behind. Maxie rooms with another cat, whose story we may share sometime soon. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Striker

Yesterday, my wife and I walked along Alabama between Mission and Madison, beyond which we could make out silhouetted Itchy Valentino shading on the next block. I stopped, seeing orange fur against foliage along a driveway. A cat! She spotted his prey—an overly large lizard—that (sorry) was no longer visible when I shot the Featured Image using Leica M10 and Summarit-M 1:2.4/50 lens. By posture, you can see stalking still.

Photo vitals: f/5.6, ISO 200, 1/250 sec, 50mm; 4:13 p.m. PDT. The EXIF shows f/4.8, which the camera estimates based on other settings. I am sure about the aperture. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Dutch

We close out the month and first half of the year—on a Caturday! In celebration, please meet the husky shorthair nicknamed Dutch. I couldn’t approach close enough to read the tag attached to his collar. Thus, he earns the moniker for distinctive sighting: First feline on New York Street, which dead-ends into a canyon on one side and Madison on the other. In the 1620s, Dutch settlers claimed the area around and on Manhattan Island that the English would later rename New York. Does that make any sense of my choice?

I used Leica M10 and Summarit-M 1:2.4/50 lens to capture the Featured Image, yesterday at 3:24 p.m. PDT. Same day, the camera manufacturer released new firmware, which I updated. Dutch has the honor of being first cat captured with v2.4.5.0, which changes default auto-ISO to 200—supposedly to improve dynamic range. The camera now also includes (guessed) aperture in the EXIF (e.g. metadata). Vitals: f/2.5, ISO 200, 1/750 sec, 50mm. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Spice

For some reason, June 7, 2018 was a busy day for feline finds. The tortoiseshell that I nickname Spice is third in succession, following Royal and Sleepy. We met along Florida between Madison and Monroe. I have seen the tortie twice since, in the same apartment parking lot.

I pulled out iPhone X to capture the Featured Image and companion at 6:08 p.m. PDT. Vitals: f/2.4, ISO 32, 1/60 sec, .97 ev, 6mm. The other: f/1.8, ISO 50, 1/120 sec, 4mm.

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The Cats of University Heights: Sleepy

Cleveland cat sightings are surprisingly few, despite the expansive street’s neighborhood prominence. Among them: BellBlack, Black and WhiteFess (who disappeared), Fresh, Hunter, LeviLiloMellow, Mika (who moved away), MiniPepe (who was rehomed), Roly Poly, and Tortie. That’s fourteen out of the 195 profiles posted since the series started in October 2016 (hopefully I missed none in the counting).

The fifteenth feline—and the first new seen in six months along Cleveland—rested (hence the nickname) in a yard on the stretch between Tyler and Van Buren. I shot the Featured Image on June 7, 2018 using iPhone X. Vitals: f/2.4, ISO 16, 1/345 sec, 6mm; 3:29 p.m. PDT. 

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The Cats of University Heights: Royal

I read about this beautiful Bengal for about a month in various posts on the NextDoor social network before finally making contact, June 7, 2018. Residents wanted to know who this animal belonged to, if anyone, with some confusing the regal feline for Abby, who lives about four blocks away.

Earning nickname Royal, the cat commanded great presence. During our early evening walk, the shorthair approached my wife and I, coming up Monroe Ave. Interestingly, a ginger followed about a half-block behind, eventually seeking refuge either in the alley or some yard between Louisiana and Texas streets.