The New Cathouse / El Nuevo Burdel

La versión español está después de la versión inglés.

IN 1982, SAN Geraldo and I drove with our friend Susan from Boston to New York for the weekend. On the way back, we stopped at a McDonald’s on the Connecticut Turnpike. While in the parking lot sipping our chocolate shakes, I noticed a veterinary clinic on the other side of the fence. There were two entrances. One read “DOGS” and the other, “CATS.”

I facetiously said, “Ha. They don’t fool me. That’s just a cover for a cathouse.”

San Geraldo, the young and innocent (he was 33!), said, “Huh? Is that like a kennel, only for cats?”

Susan and I looked at him incredulously. As you have probably learned, San Geraldo often gets incredulous looks.

“You really don’t know what a cathouse is?” I asked.

“Yeah, like a kennel, right?” he replied.

I explained, “Jerry, a cathouse is a whorehouse.”

“No it’s not. You’re making that up.”

“I am not. It’s where you would go to… well, not you… uh… It’s where you go for pussy!

“Oh, stop it. It is not.“

Susan reached her hand to his cheek, nodded, and said, “It is.”


In unison, “Really.”

“Well, that’s just here. My mother won’t know what it is!”

“Trust me,” I assured him, “your mother will know.”

When we got home, San Geraldo immediately phoned his mother in Minnesota. I stood close so I could hear her response. “Mom, what’s a cathouse?”

She laughed and then, when he didn’t respond, asked, “Is this a joke?”

“No,” he muttered. “Do you know what a cathouse is?”

“Well, of course. Don’t you remember Lulu’s when we lived in Huron [South Dakota]?”

Stunned silence.

The next night, the phone was ringing when we got home from dinner. San Geraldo grabbed it. It was his Aunt Mildred (his mother’s oldest sister). I could hear her cackle all the way from Oregon, “Say, Jerry, what’s a cathouse?”

OH, SPEAKING OF WHICH, our cats have a new house.

Moose is above in his new favorite spot and Dudo slept in one of the soft ring baskets last night. There’s some more rearranging to be done, but the cats are happy.


EN 1982, SAN Geraldo y yo conducimos con nuestra amiga Susan de Boston a Nueva York durante el fin de semana. En el camino de regreso, nos detuvimos en un McDonald’s. Mientras estaba en el estacionamiento bebiendo nuestros batidos de chocolate, noté una clínica veterinaria al otro lado de la cerca. Había dos entradas. Uno leía “PERROS” y el otro, “GATOS”.

Fascinamente dije: “¡Ja! No me engañan. Eso es sólo una cubierta para un “cathouse” [“casa de gatos” que en inglés es un burdel or prostíbulo].

San Geraldo, el joven e inocente (¡él tenía 33 años!), dijo: “¿Eh? ¿Es como una perrera, solo para gatos?”

Susan y yo lo miramos con incredulidad. Como probablemente hayas aprendido, San Geraldo a menudo se ve incrédulo.

“¿Realmente no sabes lo que es un cathouse?”, pregunté.

“Sí, como una perrera, ¿verdad?”, respondió.

Le expliqué: “Jerry, un “cathouse” es un burdel”.

“No, no es. Lo estás inventando”.

“Yo no soy. Es a donde irías a … bueno, no a ti … uh … ¡Es a donde vas para el coño!

“Oh, basta. No lo es.”

Susan se llevó la mano a la mejilla, asintió y dijo: “Es”.

“¿¡¿De Verdad?!?”

Al unísono, “De verdad”.

“Bueno, eso es sólo aquí. ¡Mi madre no sabrá lo que es!”

“Confía en mí”, le aseguré, “tu madre lo sabrá”.

Cuando llegamos a casa, San Geraldo llamó inmediatamente a su madre en Minnesota. Me quedé cerca para escuchar su respuesta. “Mamá, ¿qué es un ‘cathouse’?”

Ella se rió y luego, cuando él no respondió, preguntó: “¿Es esto una broma?”

“No”, murmuró. “¿Sabes lo que es un burdel?”

“Bueno, por supuesto. ¿No te acuerdas La Casa de Lulu cuando vivíamos en Huron [Dakota del Sur]? ”

Silencio aturdido.

La noche siguiente, el teléfono estaba sonando cuando llegamos a casa después de la cena. San Geraldo lo agarró. Era su tía Mildred (la hermana mayor de su madre). Podía escuchar su risa desde Oregón: “Dime, Jerry, ¿qué es un cathouse?”

OH, HABLANDO DE QUE, nuestros gatos tienen una nueva casa.

Moose está arriba en su nuevo lugar favorito y Dudo durmió en una de las canastas de anillos suaves anoche. Hay un poco más de reorganización por hacer, pero los gatos están felices.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

31 thoughts on “The New Cathouse / El Nuevo Burdel”

  1. First of all, congrats to Dudo and Moose! What a fab new cat tree — you are being spoiled rotten! HRH had a big cat tree too but she would not use it unless it was right in the centre of the living room’s picture window so she could look outside. If we put it in the corner, she would turn her nose up at it.

    Secondly, was San Geraldo raised in cotton wool? How could he have been so sheltered? Adorable, but perplexing.

    1. Debra:
      I have asked Jerry at times if he lived under a rock. He blames it on his South Dakota upbringing. But, although he DID remain innocent about SOME things, that wasn’t the case with everything. He was a busy little boy (25–32) before we met. Making up for lost time, I suppose.

    1. anne marie:
      Thanks. The cats are very happy, as are we. And, as for the home, thanks… it’s always a work in progress.

    1. Kathleen:
      I thought of that, but was too lazy. So simply brought it downstairs and it was grabbed up very quickly.

  2. And I thought I used to be naive!! Ron taught me a lot!
    The kitties are going to LOVE their new digs.

    1. Jim:
      I didn’t DO much but I knew much… Jerry? He was just the opposite. The cats are loving this new tree house.

  3. Can you hear me laughing across the ocean ~ too funny!
    (laughing with Gerry not AT him ~~ LOL)
    One never lives down that kind of nativity, eh!?
    opps naivety
    almost left that spelling error

    1. Bob:
      I haven’t seen Moose on the top level yet. I don’t know if he’s been there. Dudo sleeps in the ring sacks. The toys all over the floor had been on every level of the new tree, so I know SOMEONE made the rounds.

    1. Urspo:
      My initial thought when I saw these cats was, man they’re cute but do we really want “ordinary” tuxedo cats (aka, Common Europeans). Nothing ordinary about them!

      1. Urspo:
        Oh, if those were the real M&D and not their avatars, you’d be getting an earful about the crappy weather.

  4. I love the innocence that is SG. It makes him even more adorable and cuddly. Now, while looking at the before and after pix of the cats’ lairs, the theme from The Jeffersons came into my head. Movin’ on up! I wish it would leave now 🙂

  5. There is, or was, a restaurant in Sebring Florida named the Cat House, the old codgers enjoyed saying they were going down to the cat house this afternoon.

    1. Mistress Borghese:
      There were even bigger ones, especially intended for Maine Coon cats. We’d have to give up a room for one of those! This is bad enough!

  6. The old tree looked so good so I expect they needed a new special one because they needed it !
    What we do for our sweet peas !

    cheers, parsnip

    1. Parsnip:
      Several of the rope-wrapped pillars on the old one had finally come apart. We considered ordering just those parts, but it would have cost as much as buying a new one. We did like that one, but can’t believe how much more solid and elegant this one is…. with removable and machine-washable cushions top and bottom!

    1. Urspo:
      Well then I don’t know who just demanded more treats and a visit to the front hall.

  7. Ah the innocence of youth!!!! So what sort of kennel was Lulu”s??????

    And that isn’t a cathouse that is a cat condo! Dudo and Moose don’t deserve less!

    1. Willym:
      Well, if you asked Jerry, he might tell you that Lulu’s was a kennel for cats.

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