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Joanna Lundeen

designer + type nerd

24

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Fist Bump Kitty

This cat has been on my desk for almost a year. Smirking and pumping his fist at me all day, everyday. I find it soothing to watch his fist go back and forth. There is something about that smooth repetitive motion. When I’m at a loss for words or ideas, my eyes often wander over to him instead of staring out the window. He reminds me of my cat our family had when I was in high school. That cat did not fear anything. He was declawed before we got him but that didn’t stop him from being the toughest cat in the neighborhood. I watched him climb trees and win fights with other cats despite his lack of claws. He was a good cat.

My coworkers have grown to love this little cat. There have been portraits drawn of him and one hangings in a tiny frame at my desk. We’ve discussed giving him a name other than “Fist Bump Kitty” but nothing seems to fit.

Fist Bump Kitty is solar powered. I can relate with that. Most of the time I feel solar powered. Like the cat, I keep smiling when the sun is gone but I don’t feel like exerting any extra energy. The only reason he can be powered while in my cubicle is because I have a few lights to keep me going on those dreary days.

When my coworker gave it to me as a gift he said this cat was a symbol of luck. I had seen this type of figurine at businesses before but never known what it meant. I found out that it is called a maneki-neko which means “beckoning cat.”  When the right paw is raised it is a symbol of good fortune and money. The white cat represents purity and happiness. Everything from the colors to the position of his paws and the collar around his neck mean something. The origins of this symbolic cat go back to sometime in the 1800’s in Japan and now it sits on my desk in the Midwest in 2015. Funny how once meaningful objects can turn into cute $5 gifts you get around the holidays.

I love cats so much. Some people might think it’s a problem. I’ve been told on multiple occasions that if I’m not careful I will turn into a crazy cat lady and I think they’re right because it doesn’t sound like the worst thing that could happen. I’d much rather be known for my love for cats than for my anger or crankiness. I think my dear husband will keep the number of cats we have in the house at bay. It does concern me that many “Hoarders” episodes start with the person introducing their cats and telling the viewing audience that they are an “artist.”

I don’t believe in luck or chance. I don’t believe this cat’s presence on my desk is adding anything but some adorable fist bumping, but that is just fine with me.

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