When I was a graduate student at UC Irvine, I performed part time with a contemporary dance company. We had an inside joke that the only dancers who “fit in” with the culture were the ones who were cat people.
This wasn’t exactly a litmus test. Clearly being a strong dancer was the most important ingredient in fitting into the dance company. At least from a performance perspective. But I think the core of that inside joke had more to do with our inability to conceive of how a fellow dancer could not be a cat person. From their graceful movements to their often dramatic personalities, cats are breathing manifestations of theater.
At Club Cat, a genuine passion for cats is one of the most essential character traits that a Concierge must possess. Our cat-focused culture is what sets apart from the rest.
Theater brings two cat lovers together
When I first met Tami a few years ago, we were watching our kids perform at the Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA). I was giddy with excitement to be watching my oldest daughter perform with so many talented kids at her new school.
Tami was the exact opposite. When the show started, I noticed right away that she was calm and collected, as if she’d been to a gazillion of these student performances over the years. (I would later find out that she has.) And yet, she seemed to watch the show with a rapt attention that betrayed her years of experience directing youth theater. I admired that she was fully immersed in the moment, drinking in whatever transpired before her on the stage.
With our busy lives, Tami and I only ran into each other at a school meeting here and there. But when we did, I always enjoyed our conversations about everything ranging from our kids to local theater productions to cats.
A creative cat lover joins the team
Shortly before Covid hit, Tami climbed on board as a Concierge at Club Cat. Her strong interpersonal skills and genuine adoration for cats instantly made her a perfect fit for the team. But her appreciation for the uniqueness of cats and her creative touch lends a refreshing dimension to our team of cat aficionados.
Club Cat recently went “behind the scenes” with Tami, Club Cat Concierge, cat lover and parent, and theater connoisseur.
CC: You have a very diverse professional background ranging from running preschools to directing shows including children’s theater. In fact, you’re currently working at Arts & Learning Conservatory full time. Tell us a bit about what makes you tick professionally.
TM: I had an inspiring college professor who had also been a truck driver, a retail store owner, and a fashion buyer. She unlocked the magical possibility for me that I could follow multiple passions and not have to be just one thing my whole life. I have a strong need to be creatively fulfilled, and I also like to feel my work makes a difference. Those are the threads that tie my variety pack of a resume together. Aside from that, I just love theatre, kids, and cats.
CC: Are there any similarities between working with cats and working with kids?
TM: For sure! Kids and cats alike need trust-building, nurturing, and consistency. And if you want them to respond positively,
you have to genuinely enjoy working with them. The cats are decidedly less amenable to staging a theatrical production, though. So far. 😉
CC: What do you enjoy the most about working at Club Cat?
TM: I love getting to know all the different cats. They each have their own quirks and personality traits, just like people. My favorite part of the day at Club Cat is when I go from suite to suite visiting, petting, and talking to the kitties. It’s a therapeutic antidote to whatever is stressful in my day.
CC: Rumour has it you are a human mama and also a cat mama. Is that true?
TM: Yes, I’m a mom of three grown kids, one teenager, and Hobie Cat, the stray kitten I took in “for the weekend” 13 years ago.
Fortunately, Tami is a cat person. Which means she passes the Club Cat Concierge litmus test with flying colors!