Sunday, October 30, 2011


When I picked up the phone on Halloween some years ago, a man asked “Are you the one who’s lost a cat?”

Well, I had an orange cat, and he liked to wander the neighborhood, so I was a little surprised at the question. Sonny had a tag on his collar with my phone number, so I knew the call was on the level.

“Um, yes, I suppose I am”, I answered.

“Well, you need to come down here and pick him up right now. This is the manager of the Del Mar Theater on Pacific Avenue”, the man said.

I lived about four blocks from the theater in downtown Santa Cruz, so I said I’d be there in a few minutes

“Okay”, he said, “where do you live?”

When I told him I lived on Elm Street, there was an odd pause before he said “just hurry”.

As it turns out, the Del Mar, which was an old fashioned theater with a free-standing ticket booth in front, was just admitting customers to the next show, so I understood why the manager wanted to be rid of the distraction, which was my cat. So I went right up to the ticket taker at the door, and asked where I could find Sonny. He pointed to the ticket booth, and sure enough there he was inside having a good time with all the activity. The ticket taker and the movie goers all got a kick out of what was going on.

As I was leaving, I looked at the marquee, and I understood the awkward pause after I told the manager where I lived. The movie that was playing was “Nightmare on Elm Street” !