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Origin of the “yes” cat

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One of our favorite designs is the “yes” cat.  The cat, so far, appears on two shirts; the “YES” shirt and the “FOOD” shirt.  We have a "chocolate" shirt in the makings.

Yes Cat Illustration

The story behind that cute cat is a particular pose of my cat, Wilson Bones Mallette, on the sofa.  He looks calm in this photo, but all I need to do is rattle a bag of treats, and his face instantly resembles our yes cat illustration.

 

The Wilson “Willy” story

How Wilson got his name:


My husband and I are owned by just one kitty – Wilson Bones Mallette.  He is a fat yellow boy tabby.

Wilson’s name was chosen long before he was even born!  The name was inspired while watching the movie “Castaways” with Tom Hanks.  If not familiar with the movie, it is about a FedEx employee (played by Tom hanks) stranded on an uninhabited island after his plane crashes in the South Pacific. The film depicts his attempts to survive on the island. He keeps himself company by painting a face on a Wilson Volleyball and making it his trusty friend and companion.

In one scene during the movie, Chuck (the stranded Fedex employee) has a moment of clarity and realizes how ludicrous it is to be having a conversation with a Volleyball.  He heaves the ball out of his cave, only to retrieve it a short time later, freshen up the face, and while lovingly looking into the painted face of “Wilson” wags his finger and says, “I know you! I know you!”.  It is said with such love and affection, I turned to my husband and said “Honey, when BaBa is gone, and we get a new kitty, I’d like to name him Wilson.”  To which my husband added, “Ok. Wilson Bones Mallette.”

Finding Wilson


 
When BaBa, my 16-year-old beautiful gray and white two-colored eyed kitty died in May 2002, my husband made me wait a month “out of respect for BaBa’s death” before searching for a new kitty. 

 


I had my heart set on a yellow tabby, but none could be found.  Eager to have a frisky little kitten romping the house to keep the remaining kitty, Moses, company, and to help distract me from grieving the loss of BaBa, we had chosen a lovely little Asian-looking kitten from a local shelter. While in the room where a microchip was being inserted into the kitten, Bruce noticed a little yellow tabby, about six months old, in a cage in the room with a sign on it that said, “now available.”

We inquired.  “Wilson almost died” the attending veterinarian explained. “It seems he was poisoned by neighbors, and the owners didn’t want him anymore – so he was transferred here from the vet’s office.”
 
Bruce and I deliberated for about 40 minutes on which cat to take home.  We were concerned that Wilson may have been damaged by the poisoning, and that the damage could show up later in life. We were assured that was pretty unlikely…well, obviously….we chose the yellow tabby. And with no regrets.

Here is Willy before he got fat. LOL.

Wilson as a Kitten

Wilson is the mascot of the site that creates "TGIF" and "I Hate Monday" cat posts - Catwows.com


Here is a cute video of Wilson enjoying something he always says “yes” to – paper!

 



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