The Smoking Cat of Italy

So here’s a bizarre little story on a sort of Halloween theme.

When I was visiting Italy in September, I stumbled upon the Bar Orlando. They were touting a cat there who, apparently, did something very special. He had his own statue, his own mural, and his own post cards. What did this cat do? He smoked.

The tile design on the wall of Bar Orlando.

The tile design on the wall of Bar Orlando. “To see me is to believe.”

That’s right, he smoked. Now, I don’t condone any kitties going off and smoking (or any people teaching their cats to smoke for profit), but apparently this one made quite a lot of money from it and was very beloved in his day. Here’s the story:

The Bar Orlando was founded in Sant’Agata, Italy in 1907 by a man named Cilento Orlando. From what I can glean from the postcard, his son, in 1945, adopted a cat and named him Jolly. Actually, let me just quote the postcard for you (punctuation and spelling directly from the print):

“Alfredo took the management of the bar. He was a war veteran and an animal lover. Alfredo decided to organize a show with his prodigious cat, called Jolly. This show gave a turn to the bar, in fact, myriads of local and foreign pepole, came to see the Smoking cat. Now the bar is still managed by the same family with Alfredo’s son Orlando.”

The man who now owns the bar was very pleased to see us photographing his cat wall and came running out to give us postcards. Now, momFOD, being a non-smoker and a concerned cat parent, asked the question that I’m sure all of us wanted to know: Did he inhale?

The exuberant owner assured us that, while the cat did, indeed hold the cigarette in his mouth, and while yes, the cigarette was, indeed, lit, little Jolly never, EVER inhaled.

If you’re on the Amalfi Coast, walk on down to Sant’Agata and see Jolly for yourself. I mean, he’s not there. His statue is. Jolly would be more than 60 years old by now, and we all know that smoking shortens lifespans.

Photograph of the postcard.

Photograph of the postcard.

“People are like dust that disappears at the first gust of wind. But the signs they can leave, are Eternal.” – Aflredo Cilento.

Please don’t smoke.

Love,

Creeps.

PS. Tomorrow, come back and see the AMAZING, OUTSTANDING, and PHENOMENAL photographs of John Boehm. I’ll be featuring another black cat and you won’t want to miss these portraits.

Confession Friday: I Long To Be A Fashion Designer

crepescouture1

It’s true. Ever since my trip to Italy, it’s been nagging at me. I’ve been designing secretly for two years now, but I’ve finally mustered up to the courage to say it: I want to be a fashion designer. I want to have a line of Crepes Couture. I have, many times now, improved my FODs’ clothing, and I think I have a real knack for it. Let me show you some of this season’s designs:

Thumb holes are very in right now.

Thumb holes are very in right now.

MomFOD works out a lot, so I vented her favorite jacket. Warm yet cool for autumn comfort.

MomFOD works out a lot, so I vented her favorite jacket. Warm yet cool for autumn comfort.

 

These are dadFODs favorite shorts. I improved airflow and convenience with this cleverly placed aperture. I call these "Peephole pants."

These are dadFODs favorite shorts. I improved airflow and convenience with this cleverly placed aperture. I call these “Peephole pants.”

 

I have also been dabbling in home design. Here’s part of the new table-wear line I’m working on:

Carefully placed cisterns for food to fall directly into, keeping your linens clean and fresh.

Carefully placed cisterns for food to fall directly into, keeping your linens clean and fresh.

What do you think? Do you love it? Would you wear my designs?

What’s your secret today? Confess.

Love,

Crepes.

PS Don’t forget to enter my Gatti Di Roma Calendar giveaway! It ends soon! And a special thanks to Henri, le Chat Noir, for sharing our Adoption Champion photos yesterday. We got a record number of visitors to our site and Siobhan has a great start at finding the perfect home!

 

Tuesday Haikusday: Italy Welcomes Crepes

Remember when I said Italians really love cats? Well, apparently they love me especially because I saw banners for me everywhere! Here are a few photos that I’ve decided to wax poetic about. This was a challenge since Italian words seem to be awfully long, each one was like a haiku unto itself. Eh hem…

italy

Bar Amore in Rome. They put my name in lights! I think “pub” must mean “welcome” in Italian.

Dear Bar Amore,

Thanks for welcoming me but

Neon is tacky.

__________________________________________________________________________

This place was offering me various ways of entertaining myself like with nutella, white chocolate, etc. And they were going to pay me Euros to enjoy myself!

This place had a spa menu. They wanted to cover me in Nutella, white chocolate, marmelade. And they were going to pay me Euros to enjoy the spa. Wow!

Sweet Marmellata

Or maybe some Nutella?

Ran out of sylla-

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This place in Rome really went all out with two signs! Although, apparently this pizza guy they were expecting deserved three. Maybe I'll get three next year.

This place in Rome really went all out with two signs! Although, apparently this pizza guy they were expecting deserved three. Maybe I’ll get three next year.

What’s a pizza crepes?

I think it’s food, I replied.

Don’t ask dumb questions.

Love,

Crepes.