Wednesday, July 30, 2014


People who share my birthday:

Arnold Schwarzenegger
Paul Anka
Peter Bogdanovich
William Gass
Henry Ford
Emily Bronte
Casey Stengel
Mary Shelley

I wish there were more writers and artists who shared my birthday. I tried to find lists online of less famous or "popular" people, but I guess people are only interested in media celebrities these days. 

Actually, birthdays don't signify much for me. After about age 12, I think I lost interest in birthdays. And by age 18 or so, I lost interest in holidays too. The first day of the fishing season is about the only day of the year that I pay any attention to. I'm not much for gifts either. 

Below is a photo of my real birthday present this year. This is Sabine (or Sabina). She's a light grey Siamese kitten, about 10 weeks old. She's already captured my heart. We got her (and her sister, named Capuccine) over the weekend. She's tiny, with beautiful light grey eyes, and an intent, quiet manner.  

Sabine in the alcove above the icebox

Sabine, it may be recalled, was the name of the child in the great film Jules et Jim [1962, directed by Francois Truffaut, which starred Jeanne Moreau and Oskar Werner]. 

Jeanne Moreau, Sabine, Oskar Werner and Henri Serre in Jules et Jim

It turns out that the part of Sabine in the movie was played by one Sabine Haudepin, who grew up to become a full-fledged French cinema actress, appearing in some 80 movies. 

Sabine Haudepin

Little Sabine doesn't really remind me of the movie, or of the character Sabine in the movie, or of the actress who played her in the film grew up to become. But the name will always echo in my memory the spirit of the movie--one of my all-time favorite flicks. 

By the time Sabine becomes an old cat, I shall be very old myself. One way of dividing up the segments of one's life is through the duration(s) of the lives of pets whom one keeps. Vanilla, the first Siamese we ever owned, lived to be 19. We were a young family when 'Nilla came into our lives, and by the time he'd died, we were middle-aged. Now, Su-Mee and Sabine and Capuccine will be the cats of our later, older age. Four cat generations to one human. When I was a boy, I had one boy cat, Tom, who was the issue of the first cat I owned, Snowfoot. When Tom had grown up, we gave Snowfoot away, and I always regretted that. Later when Tom was a young male, he was run over in the street, and I never got another one. When I started my own family, I resisted having a pet, but eventually capitulated, and so began our feline saga.  


Conrad DiDiodato said...

Happy Birthday, good sir!

Ed Baker said...

there's a lesson in your nice story....

am now thinking of ALL of my now dead cats

the two-legged ones..... and the four

and me? still here..... re:calling

I got some "cat" drawings/ poems around here somewhere ... not as old as you.... but young&cute like Sabine

Sunny West said...

Happy Birthday, Curtis! A time to celebrate! I imagine you have a favorite cocktail for birthdays. Sabine is a great present...