I’d like to introduce our new cat.

Everyone, meet Special Agent Jack Bauer. He’s a ten-week-old rescue with one heck of a story.Jack

But first, here’s the story behind the name. While I did enjoy the first season of 24, I’m a bigger fan of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and that’s where the name really comes from. The gang decides to get themselves a junkyard dog to help police their neighborhood, which has been overrun with crime.

ASP_1The junkyard owner, however, doesn’t have a dog. He has a cat. “That’s a tough cat,” he tells the gang. “He was born in a pool of gasoline on a piece of rusty scrap metal. I’ve seen that cat jump through barbed wire into a vat of hot tar. That cat is indestructible.” As it happens, Dennis takes a shining to the cat, and he names him Special Agent Jack Bauer. By the end of the episode, Agent Bauer does indeed prove himself to be indestructible. Needless to say, my wife and I knew we’d have to name our next cat after him.

So here’s our Jack’s story. We adopted him from Catsnap, a local organization that does a lot of great work with cats. Jack first came to be under their care earlier this summer. A man was driving through Champaign-Urbana and stopped for gas and to check his oil. When he opened the hood, a kitten jumped out. The man’s last stop had been a hundred miles before that.

burnieWhen he got to Catsnap, Jack was not happy. He had a burn on top of his head and was undernourished. They took care of his health needs and placed him in foster care. They’d named him “Burnie,” which may seem kind of cruel, but it was meant as a sort of badge of honor. Thing is, if you didn’t already know he’d been through that traumatizing ordeal, you’d never know it judging by his demeanor. He’s friendly, playful, and darn sweet. Nothing to tell you about his voyage except a small scar on his head. (Photo by Catsnap.)

jack2So far, he’s doing great in our house. Our older cat, Gabrielle, has accepted Jack as part of the household. Or she just doesn’t care. She’s a pretty laid-back cat, and she’s seen it all in her near-18 years. Our other cat, Zoë, isn’t taking it so well. Lots of hissing and growling at the beginning. All Jack wants to do is play with her. Zoë is warming up to him, though.

So welcome to our home, Agent Bauer. It’s your new CTU.

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