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...have been, and always will be...

We have sad news.  Mr. Pickles - our occasional editor, regular contributor, and eternally grumpy friend -  passed away yesterday morning.  He had been living with a chronic illness, and although we'd managed to control it with medication for it for many years, it finally caught up with him.  The end came quickly, and we were with him as he slipped away.  He was eighteen.

Regular readers will know that Pickles achieved the late-career coup of appearing in Solaris' horror anthology End of the Line and its accompanying press release.  But this was merely the pièce de résistance of nearly two decades spent, admittedly somewhat unwillingly, in the public eye.  Pickles, a cat of unusual size and timidity, had a personality entirely out of proportion with his fears of strangers, loud noises, bright colors, unexpected shapes, vets and my boyfriends.  He was enormous, grumpy, lazy, cowardly and beloved by people across two continents.  I can't count the number of times I've been introduced to strangers as "Pickles' owner."  "Ah," they'll respond, with mingled comprehension and pity, "I've heard all about Pickles." Pick was, of course, the best cat ever in the entire history of the universe, and Pornokitsch Towers will forever be too quiet without him.

Please join us in dropping a very heavy book onto the floor in the middle of the night, to startle a loved one awake, in his memory tonight.  Pickles preferred The Sagas of the Icelanders, but any appropriately tome-like volume will do.

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