My cat was two the day I got my pussy. She had beaten to me it—bottom surgery, I mean—by some twenty-one months, which is a hundred forty-seven months in her time. By the time I found her, in a small shelter near the United Nations building in Manhattan, I had nearly thrown in the towel. Three days of leaving the house in the freezing January rain, holding the cat carrier I’d purchased on Amazon Prime; three days of returning, after dark, soggy and empty-handed. It was terribly tragic. Getting a pussy is harder than you’d think. Cats rut in spring and summer, so adopting a kitten in the winter can be tricky. But on the fourth day, at the fifth shelter, I met a tiny creature, silver and marbled, three months old, freshly fixed by the vet upstairs. She clung to me like a tree, or a hope. They told me she was a boy, but I’d heard that one before. She trembled all the way home.