Micah Harris and the “Furry Faces of Innocence” on his phone


Photo courtesy of Micah Harris

Harris shows off his famous cat mask, paired with another daily cat shirt.

Not everyone knows his name, but everyone knows his face—or rather, everyone knows his cat face mask.

You’ve seen him in the hallways a few times, and for some reason, he sticks out to you. You don’t have classes together, you don’t know his name, and you’ve never spoken to him—but it seems like everyone knows of him.

Cat guy.

Today, “cat guy,” formally known as sophomore Micah Harris, dons yet another vibrantly colored shirt with a cat on it.

To strangers in the hallway, Harris is “that kid with the cat mask.” To his peers and teachers, the kid with the cat mask and the kid with a plethora of cat pictures in his phone. For as long as many students at CVHS have known him, Harris has been known for his healthy obsession with cats. It’s not like he minds, anyways.

“As a person that has trouble remembering people’s names, for the people that have trouble remembering my name, ‘Cat Guy’ also works,” Harris said. “When I enter the room with a cat mask and a cat shirt, [people] generally tend to smile at least a little bit more.”

But his own cats haven’t always felt the same way about him.

“When I was younger, my cats were terrified of me—and rightfully so,” Harris said. “My friends [and I] like[d] to chase them [cats] around—as 4-year-olds like to do. [We’d] pick [the cats] up and do whatever.”

Young Micah Harris with one of his cats. (Micah Harris)

But as he got older, Harris realized that he didn’t want his cats—or any cats, for that matter—to be afraid of him.

“For the past few years, I have been working to get my cats to not hate me,” Harris said. “And we’ve been growing closer every single day.”

In middle school, Harris started showing substitute teachers his cat pictures, a practice that continues to this day with all of his teachers. He’s known not just for his plain love of his feline friends, but also for the expansive knowledge that he’s accrued about cats. Having watched his fair share of Netflix documentaries about these animals when beginning to repair his relationship with them, Harris is now a bit of a kitten expert.

“When a cat is like blinking at you, it’s like a show of trust,” Harris stated when asked to state a cat fact that might be surprising to most people.

For Harris, cats are much more than just “furry faces of complete innocence.” According to him, cats help people to deal with stress.

“Cats are an essential part of my life, and I can’t imagine my life without cats,” Harris said. 

To Harris, cats are people with their own culture—just like humans, but distinct from them. They live their own lives yet share a world with humans, creating lighthearted moments—like when Harris saw a cat while taking out the trash, making the cat into an instant meme.

“I have this picture [from] when I was taking out the trash of a cat, and it was just a perfect meme to happen. A black cat just sitting and watching. Paired with a text. ‘The heck you just said.’ That’s what I put for it,” Harris said.

“A lot of people misunderstand them,” Harris said. “But if you take the time to get to know a cat, you will have a true friend that doesn’t judge and who’s always there for you.”

Besides finding friendship in cats, Harris also says that cats help with stress and the troubles of daily life.

“I had a headache [a few weeks ago], and whenever my cat was on my lap and I was petting them, I felt better,” Harris said. “Just keep a couple cats on hand wherever you go, you’ll basically be immune to everything!”

Harris had two Oriental Shorthair cats—his favorite cat breed—of his own, Watson and Crick, who were named after the scientists that studied DNA structure.

“My cats are like the perfect cats right now,” Harris said. “Oriental Shorthairs have like this… angular face… they’re quite distinctive… [and] they’re very beautiful.”

Sometimes, Crick, who unfortunately passed several years ago, would curl up into a crescent shape with their belly facing up, trying to get Harris to pet them instead of doing work.

“‘Hey, look at this soft belly that you could be petting right?’” said Harris, describing Crick’s antics. “‘Now. Wouldn’t that be so much better than doing [a] chore like showering—cleaning yourself? Pet me, or else.’”

Harris fondly recalls memories of Crick. Even as Crick passed a while ago, Harris still stays positive with all things cat related.

“And yeah, I miss him,” said Harris. “[Crick] lived a long life. Still have one cat though, and I’ll hug [Watson] for the both of them.”

Harris’ cats, Watson and Crick, curled up in the shape of a heart. (Micah Harris)

For Harris, cats are truly like family to him. Hypothetically picking between cats and his sister was a difficult choice for him. 

Why do you do this to me?” said Harris. “They’re both family to me. Would you pick [between] your mom or your dad?”

Harris ultimately reached a decision after some deliberation.

“I’ll probably put [pick] my sister because I can talk to her, and I can’t quite talk to a cat,” Harris said. “Though there can be some kind of conversation [with cats], but it’s not really as much as a meaningful conversation with my sister.”

When asked which type of cat he’d be if he had to choose, Harris took a long, thoughtful pause. Then:

“I’d be a hairless cat in Egypt and be, like, worshiped.”