Home Celebrity Bianca, RIP, 1994-2010

If you’ve been wondering why the posts have been fewer than usual this week. I’ve been dealing with a sad situation. Today, at 3:15pm, I had to put down my beautiful Calico cat, Bianca. She was 16, and her interests were divided between walking across the very keyboard upon which I am now typing, testing various flavors of expensive, designer cat food, and sleeping in the warm sunlight that comes through my living room windows.

Bianca was a rescue cat I found at PetCo in Union Square in late September1997. The people at PetCo called her Mother Theresa, because she took care of the other cats. She came with a little report card that said she was one year old. Later, the vet said she was probably three and had had at least one litter. We never learned anything about her biological family, but she never seemed interested in finding them.

And why would she? Here Bianca had a pretty good life. She was named for beautiful Bianca Jagger because, upon joining this household, she sat and listened to the Stones‘ “Bridges to Babylon” album. She didn’t care for it, and I do recall discussing the whole kd lang business with her. She preferred the “Some Girls” era.

In her younger days she clawed her way through some of the best cashmere and nicest made suits money could buy. She often ate from the Jefferson Market and Citarella. She had her own assistants for years, Wanda, and then Jamie, who came and fed her when no one was home. In more recent months she boarded at the vet, which she treated like a spa hotel. On the bills you could see the room service charges.

Bianca had no immediate survivors, but she was preceded in death by Tina, an extraordinary gray tabby who also lived to 16 and died in January 2002. Services are private, because I don’t want to get caught spreading her ashes in our local garden.

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
17 replies to this post
  1. I’m so sorry for your loss. I lost my 12 yr old tabby two years ago and I still miss her. I hope the happy memories will be a source of comfort to you in the days going forward.

  2. Dear Roger,
    This year our Stella broke her hamstring and the operation and care costs zoomed to over 2500 dollars. So many friends said,’ I would have put her to sleep… and blah blah blah’ Stella is 11, she is not clever, she is pretty and charming and is a 100% percent housecat. She has filled our lives with so much joy and quiet companionship, during some harrowing times she was on the bed, in the washkorb, sleeping between my feet, we can learn a lot from Stella, she has a little world, she is not famous but she gives love and is satisfied, I send you my sympathies Roger, someday I will need them, too. MMH

  3. I am sorry for your loss. I lost several dear cats myself, and you mourn a cat as you do a human. They are close friends, and putting them down is the saddest thing to do.

  4. So sorry to hear of your loss. Both Carla Katz and Tyrone des Collines Boisées join me in expressing our most sincere condolences at this difficult time.

  5. Dear Mr. Friedman:

    Sorry to hear about your cat, Bianca. I’d like to think she’s running around heaven, probably meeting up with Tina and having a party. Still, your heart hurts, because animals become part of your family. They don’t judge you when you come home after a bad day. They are the model of unconditional love.

    You’re in my thoughts and prayers.

  6. I’m so sorry for your loss. Every now and then a truly remarkable pet companion joins our lives. Bianca sounds like our Abigail. She raised a litter of kittens we found, a rabbit and several dogs in the 19 years she graced us with her presence. When she passed 2 years ago our year old Shih Tsu Bob went into deep mourning for several weeks until one of the other cats adopted him.

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