Sebaztian, the orange cat of my past life

Grant McGee

Tomaz, my friend Lizzie’s tuxedo cat, was taken for a neutering recently.

“Won’t you take him to the vet?” Lizzie asked. “Male cats never forgive you for taking them to (be neutered).” That’s not an exact quote but it will do for a family newspaper.

Lizzie might be right. I remembered my orange cat from years ago, Sebaztian (orange cats are my favorite cats).
This was during the time I was married to “Dancing Wife,” whom I’ll refer to as “DW.” She took Sebaztian to the vet for his neutering.

When she picked him up from the vet he did some fragrant things in her car (I’ll not go into detail here). DW was not amused.

Over time it became apparent Sebaztian would never forgive DW. Whenever she would pick Sebaztian up to pet him he would micturate. It happened enough that she stopped picking him up. She’d pet him while he was on the floor. I could pick him up and he’d purr.

Sebaztian was a pretty good old cat. When we lived in Amarillo he had the best time hunting in the field near the airport. He would come running in from the field to meet me when he heard my scooter approaching after work.

When we moved from Amarillo he was put in a cat carrier.
We became concerned that he had not relieved himself during the whole trip. We were moving all our things in an old school bus (I’ll tell you about that sometime). We let Sebaztian out to roam the bus. DW had dozed off in a passenger seat. Sebaztian climbed up in her lap and … well … he took care of his business.

Two days worth.

“This cat hates me,” DW yelled while holding him by the scruff of his neck.

“Maybe he’s marking you so other cats stay away,” I replied.
DW was not amused.

We moved to a condo in a Phoenix suburb.

It became apparent Sebaztian missed hunting in his open fields. He took to prowling the neighborhood and picking on other cats. One morning he came running on the condo patio, a woman with a broom in hot pursuit.

“Is that your cat?”

I admitted he was.

“You need to keep him in. He’s the meanest cat in the neighborhood.”

After some other incidents we decided to find a new home for my orange cat.

We found a woman who lived in the country in the mountains northeast of Phoenix who said she’d take him.
We headed up the highway. I was driving, Sebaztian sat in the middle and DW was on the passenger side.

As we approached the mountain town, DW picked up Sebaztian.

“I’m actually going to miss this old cat,” she said.
Sebaztian, apparently feeling a parting shot was necessary, responded wetly.

Somebody once asked me why his name was Sebaztian instead of Sebastian.

“All cats like to have the letter ‘z’ in their names,” I replied.
“How do you know?”

“A cat told me,” I said. Then I switched to my imitation cat voice. “We all like to have the letter z in our name. If you can’t work it in the pronunciation it can be a silent z.”

“Was this conversation in your ‘adult beverage years’?”
I changed the subject.

As for Tomaz, he came home pleasantly and doesn’t seem to miss what he lost.

Grant McGee hosts the weekday morning show on KTQM-FM in Clovis. Contact him at: