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Lately this is what I see when I look out my window: Drama Queen, perched precariously on the sill, cackling at the birds singing from the telephone wires hanging outside. Her golden splotches shimmer in the sunlight while she makes a face at the sparrow laughing at her from the porch roof. The birds dance away when she presses her nose to the screen, eyes aglow with something she will never do: catching them.

DQ is a good cat, and a perfect photography model. Apparently not all cats think this way, but for the few blessed frames that turn out, it makes the patience worth it.