"vivos larga gatos negros" – chat guevara

I’ve been thinking about what I would name publishing company if I had one. “Black Cat Books” has always stuck in my mind. (I know that there is, or was, a Black Cat Distro that sold zines and such, so that might be out.) I’ve had this name in my head ever since the last time I was by the SPCA. There I saw a flyer that said black cats make up something like 60 or 70% of the cats in the shelter because hardly anyone wants to adopt a black cat. This struck me as particularly cruel and unusual (but sadly not necessarily surprising), and as I looked through the tiny cages with all these poor forgotton black cats, I thought they are the feline equivalent of any indie (or really just any) subculture. Misunderstood by the rest, castaway in ignorance, yet tinging with mystique and rebellion… and ultimately loveable. Black cats are the perfect symbol for the outsider.

My fluffy black cat, Arthur, is perfectly misunderstood. Well, I don’t know how misunderstood he really is, as he actually is an asshole. He does still frighten the neighbourhood children though, especially at Halloween, when they run away thinking him some witch’s demon familiar. Evil aside, I fully believe that if he had opposable thumbs, he would lead the revolution.

Long live black cats.
Vive les chats noirs!

Author: Ashleigh Rajala

Ashleigh Rajala is an award-winning writer whose work has been published in numerous journals, both online and in print. Past incarnations of hers include filmmaker, zinester, bookseller, wayward traveller and commune-dweller, while currently she works in social planning and lives with her husband and an extraordinarily fluffy cat in Surrey BC.

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