For those of you who haven’t heard the sad news, the Clinton’s cat, Socks, died the other day. I would have mentioned it sooner, but I was in the middle of my own drama—finishing a novel.
Socks lived in the White House for eight years of his life. He was a very important feline for that reason and that reason only. What other reason would the media have of actually mentioning it? It’s a cat, for heaven sake! A creature that slinks around and ignores you when you call, eats rodents or Fancy Feast if someone will serve it in a crystal bowl, and coughs up hairballs. Not attractive traits.
Cats do not wag their tails, jump up and down when you get home, or even look cute. They just stare at you like they’re waiting for you to die so they can eat your face. I believe each of them has a little tiger inside screaming to get out—and it isn’t Tony.
But if cats could talk…Socks would certainly have had stories to tell. If only someone had thought to ghost write a memoir for him before his demise. He had firsthand knowledge of Bill’s escapades. Slinking through the Lincoln bedroom or hiding behind a couch in the Oval office, he heard and saw things no one should have to be privy to. If Kenneth Starr had gotten him on the witness stand that trial would have been over in an hour.
But although he never wrote a memoir, Socks did have a fan club. Hillary also cashed in on his celebrity by having a book published that was supposed to be made up of letters children wrote to him during his eight years in the White House. I’m not so sure I believe there were that many children in America who thought a cat could read, but perhaps they were all children of Democrats.
The cat hasn’t actually lived with the Clintons since they left office though. Apparently, Socks—like Chelsea, or old Mrs. Clinton, was only around for photo ops. As soon as they were out the front door they tossed Socks to Bill’s secretary, Betty Currie, and said, “Hey, we’ll pay you to take this thing!” Without the White House staff to feed it and clean the litter box, the poor thing would have ended up in a homeless shelter—which is where they picked it up in the first place for the Governor of Arkansas photo op.
I’m not saying the cat didn’t have it good living with Betty. In fact, he lived pretty high on the hog. He went to social events to raise money, traveled the country, and was treated like royalty, rather than the Arkansas Tomcat he really was. Just like Bill, he never really left his roots behind.
So long, Socks. You lived nineteen years on this planet, which would be one hundred thirty-three in dog years. Good thing you weren’t a dog.