Tag: Cats of University Heights

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The Cats of University Heights: Cat

On March 10, 2019, as I shot a fresh portrait of tiger-tabby Alley, someone walking by stopped and told me that there is a dude who takes pictures of the neighborhood kitties. I smiled: “Oh, that’s me”. The answer precipitated a delightful 20-minute conversation between two transplants—he and his family being in San Diego for about 18 months, because of a work transfer, but with tentative plans to return to Texas (employed by the same company) in perhaps a half year hence.

He also told me about his Tuxedo: Cat—and, yes, that’s a real name. So I made extra trips down Mississippi, between Meade and Monroe, looking for the beastie. Not until May Day did we finally meet. Cat started to approach me several times, as I called his name. But the camera continually scared the handsome animal away. That’s context for the Featured Image, captured using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture and shutter speed manually set: f/3.6, ISO 1000, 1/125 sec, 63mm; 7:15 p.m. PDT.

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Ninja

Our sixth feline found outside the neighborhood’s designated borders could easily have been the seventh. Darth Mew originally was an “honorary” member, spotted on the other side of Texas Street going East up Meade towards Arizona. But I later learned that he, like Princess Leia, lives on Louisiana, which is one block back Westways from Texas and so within the boundary. Frightening: Thinking of Darth Mew crossing the bustling street, without getting killed in traffic. How could he?

Ninja (his real name) provided an unexpected explanation, during the first sighting in late September 2018—day before seeing a Bird scooter in a tree. As I approached the Texas crosswalk, the blackie walked down the Meade sidewalk towards me. But before I reached the opposite corner, the cat stepped into the street and slunk down the storm/rain gutter. I stopped, and looking back saw another behind me. Darth Mew could have crossed under the road, using the drainage pipe! Not over it. Clever cat(s)!

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The Cats of University Heights: Patches

We follow Pinky, with another Texas Street kitty, whom I nickname Patches. I spotted the Calico in a yard between Meade and Monroe, barely grabbing a shot before she disappeared behind a hedge. I have walked by the property many times since—March 16, 2019—hoping to snag a better portrait. After weeks passed, and no new sightings, it’s the one or none; so here is the moment.

I used Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens to capture the Featured Image. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/100 sec, 63mm; 1:43 p.m. PDT.

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The Cats of University Heights: Pinky

Texas Street sightings are rare; with a little fanfare, we present the first of two consecutively. Meet the forty-third kitty to appear behind window or door, and she (or he) earns nickname Pinky. What a lovely nose! I spotted this lovely on April 4, 2019,  between Meade and Monroe, while walking with my wife.

I captured the Featured Image using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/80 sec, 63mm; 5:45 p.m. PDT.

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The Cats of University Heights: Risky

Frisky is a common-enough kitty name, but we remove the “F” in nicknaming this disturbing shorthair—not for her behavior but location seen: Georgia and Howard, which is a dangerous intersection for traffic—whether foot or vehicular. My wife and I first met her on April 10, 2019, as we walked home from the Sprouts market. She approached us from Georgia. Next day, as I strode to the grocery, Risky greeted me along Howard.

The Featured Image, captured using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens, and companion (from Google Pixel 3XL) are both from the 11th. Vitals for the first, aperture manually set: f/4, ISO 100, 1/200 sec, 63mm; 6:45 p.m. PDT. For the second: f/1.8, ISO 57, 1/1805 sec, 4.44mm; 6:42 p.m.

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The Cats of University Heights: Charlie IV

Who would have guessed that there are (at least) four felines named Charlie in the neighborhood? The others (known and) profiled in this series: first, second, and third. He also is the forty-second kitty to appear behind window or door—and in this instance in residence with a known companion: Shadow, who was featured in late January 2019.

I captured the Featured image on April 2, using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/2.8, ISO 100, 1/640 sec, 63mm. 5 p.m. PDT. The companion portrait is the same image cropped differently. Which do you prefer?

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The Cats of University Heights: Bliss

We celebrate Caturday with the forty-first feline seen behind either window or door—and in the most unusual, but cutest, pose yet. How could I nickname this sleepy anything else but Bliss? Sssh, don’t wake this darling, whom I encountered along Meade near Park Blvd.

Two portraits. Two different cropped compositions. I captured the Featured Image and companion using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens, on March 10, 2019. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/480 sec, 63mm; 1:18 p.m. PDT. The other is the same, but 1/500 sec.

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The Cats of University Heights: Smudge

The eleventh Alabama Street cat, Cal, has a friend, whom I nickname Smudge. Hey, the window is a bit grimy, as are most others around about the neighborhood. The unusually wet Winter brought lush greenery and lovely flowers but left behind crud on most everyone’s glass (ours, too). Smudge is the fortieth behind window (or door) watcher featured in the series and thirty-seventh seen on Alabama between boundaries Adams and Lincoln.

Cal, who was profiled in February 2018, and his black buddy live in the same apartment. I have seen the Tuxedo often, in the same window—and after first observing Smudge, on March 2, 2019. I captured the Featured Image using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/8, ISO 100, 1/250 sec, 63mm; 2:53 p.m. PST.

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The Cats of University Heights: Rosie

When walking down Monroe from Maryland towards Arch, on Feb. 26, 2019, I spotted a pretty kitty close to where the Siamese Twins presented 11 days earlier. The owner carried in groceries, while her sister and I chatted. There’s a sad story to tell about one of the ladies, sometime later after I ask and if permission is granted.

I used Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens to capture the Featured Image and first companion. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/600 sec, 63mm; 1:25 p.m. PST. Other is the same except 1/450 sec.

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The Cats of University Heights: Swirl

While I walked along Madison between Delaware and Maryland, on March 7, 2019, a silky-fur feline mosied around a driveway, going back and forth to porch stairs meowing to be let in. A woman eventually obliged the kitty, but she didn’t know what he is called. For now, nickname Swirl will do. Hey, I got to choose something.

I captured the Featured Image and its companion using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/640 sec, 63mm; 10:47 a.m. PST. The other is same, but one minute later and 1/600 sec.

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The Cats of University Heights: Giotto

The Alabama parade continues with the third kitty presented consecutively—following Peanut and Rocky—and the thirty-sixth sighted on the street between boundaries Adams and Lincoln since the series started in October 2016. That works out to a stunning 14 percent of profiled felines.

Meet nine-month-old Giotto, whose owners moved into the neighborhood about a quarter-of-a-year ago. I spotted the striking Savannah on March 1, 2019, looking out a bay-style window—making him thirty-ninth captured behind glass or screen. I returned the next day and was lucky enough to greet his caretakers as they left for a Caturday afternoon walk. The couple gladly gave permission to take photos of the magnificent beast, which I did using Fujifilm GFX 50R and Fujinon GF63mmF2.8 R WR lens.

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The Cats of University Heights: Peanut

The thirty-fifth feline from Alabama Street—between neighborhood boundaries Adams and Lincoln—is also the third in an impromptu series of harnessed beasties (Jake and Rocky are the others). Peanut is house companion to Rocky, and both shared owner with Monkey, who passed away about 12 months ago. Next door lived Smokey, who disappeared weeks later. In another house down resides Precious. Also on the same block: Alley, Harley, Holiday, Mitsie, and Sly.

Drama of the day was Laramie and Lupe, who lived across the road from Peanut and Rocky and were removed in the late afternoon. Three weeks ago, L&L were abandoned by their owner. This evening, they are being fostered in a Pacific Beach residence by a kind woman whose beloved pet recently died. The rescue group assures me that wherever Laramie and Lupe are adopted, the bonded pair will stay together.