Urban Fur: The Iron Lady Is NOT—REPEAT NOT— In Hell…

thatcher2thumbnailshe’s alive and well (somewhere in Sunset Park)!

Unless you have been living under a rock, several very notable folks passed away last week: Jonathan Winters, Annette Funicello and of course Margaret “The Iron Lady” Thatcher.

It is not my purpose to embark upon the subject of politics. Methinks I have made my opinion of Ms. Thatcher quite clear in the title of the post. Rather, I endeavor to cover a much more important shit: bodega cats. More specifically the glowering one mug see at left.

You see, gentle readers, today I was on a mission of the utmost importance. I am pleased to announce it was successful too. But I am getting one ahead of myself.

A couple of days ago I arranged to go on a walk with a very nice fellow named Rob. He resides in Bay Ridge, I reside in Greenpoint. We agreed to meet somewhere in the middle. Given that this pretty much all of Brooklyn, there were many nifty neighborhood from which to choose. I picked Sunset Park. And at Sunset Park we met.

In the elapsing days before our meet-up I recalled something. There was a rather fetching, if dour, feline who presided over a bodega in this community. Her name was Margaret Thatcher. Yes, as in THAT/THE Margaret Thatcher. Thus I felt, in light of recent events, it was imperative to inquire as to her welfare. Once I arrived in Sunset Park I made Rob aware of our mission. What I recalled as to her place of enjoyment was as follows:

  • It is a Mexican grocery store located on 5th Avenue.
  • It is probably located across the street from Sunset Park.
  • It is presided over by a very affable Arabic gentleman.

On the surface this would seem to limit the pool considerably. Then again, this is New York City we’re talking about. Anything and everything can happen here— usually more than once.


After a few “misses” we encountered this establishment. I told Rob:

I think this is it.

We went in.

After grabbing some oregano to purchase (I didn’t want to “blow my cover”) I cased the place. There was nary a set whisker to be found. I finally turned to Rob and said:

Let’s see how crazy this guy will think I am.*

I approached the counter.

Excuse me, but don’t you have a cat?

Sam: Yes! She’s in the back!

Me: Would her name happen to be Margaret Thatcher?

No, no she’s gone. Someone took her. I have another cat now!

Someone kidcatnapped the Iron Lady?

I inquired.

After some discussion it was ascertained that this pussy was not purloined. Rather, she has retired. The Iron Lady presently calls a “very nice lady’s” home her own. As you can imagine this came as a tremendous relief to yours truly. It was then that Sam encouraged me to go in the back and met his new furry friend: Engine.

Yes, this is a rather odd name. However, we are talking about a fellow who named a cat Margaret Thatcher and when asked made it quite clear he hated her namesake. “Sam” operates on a level of logic not readily understandable to the average person. This (and the fact he let me poke around his store in search of pussy) is why he is awesome.


Without further ado, meet Engine.


She’s a rather, um, substantial lass.

She is much friendlier than her predecessor.


And she loves her some head rubbins’!

Yes folks: some people may be carrying around the cure for cancer or the means effecting world peace in their noggins. Given I still on occasion think it is 2012 I am probably not one of them. But I know my hardworking furry friends— and I am pleased to announce that (at least in Sam’s Grocery in Sunset Park) the cats are alright!

*I am crazy. The difference is I know it and have reached a level of acceptance with it. Hence why I have no trepidation going to Sunset Park, entering a bodega and asking the proprietor if he has a cat named Margaret Thatcher. So there!

And oh yeah: if anyone knows of a cat named Jonathan Winters hereabouts do speak up. I would very much like to make his acquaintance.

Urban Fur: Meet The Iron Lady

August 18, 2010 ·
Filed under: 11232, Sunset Park, Sunset Park Brooklyn 

This afternoon/evening yours truly went on a photo walk with a frequent contributor of my photo pool: Carnade. Knowing my affection for Mexican culinary items we decided to check out Sunset Park. He played tour guide. Where he went, I followed. One of the stops we made was at the above bodega: Sam’s Grocery. It is, as I learned, a very curious place. For starters I met Sam: he is Lebanese. For those of you playing along at home (and to make it perfectly clear) we are in a bodega which sells Mexican groceries whose (very nice) proprietor hails from the Middle East. Stuff such as this is why I love New York City. But it gets much more interesting, as you will see.

Meet Sam’s bodega cat in residence. Carnade inquired as to what this fetching feline’s name was.


Sam replied. Carnade and I couldn’t believe what we just heard so we asked again.

Thatcher, you know after the British Prime Minister. It’s a nice name, yes?

Sam said.

Me (once I absorbed what I have just heard):

I guess it depends on one’s politics.

Then Carnade asked the $64,000 question:

Do you like Margaret Thatcher?

To wit Sam gave the coup de grace:

No, I hate her.

And then he proceeded to explain why. Inasmuch I could ascertain Sam’s dislike of Ms. Thatcher had something to do with Cyprus. Exactly why Sam elected to name this (very friendly) cat after the Iron Lady remains a mystery. Methinks it is probably better that way.

Miss Heather

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