Pet Spotlight: Terrill Lee Lankford

TL3Name – Maddie, aka Tuna Breath, aka The Faker

breed – Hollywood Street Cat

Age – Kitten. Specific age undetermined.

How did she come to be a part of your life?

Two weeks ago I was going to work at Red Studios where we are filming the BOSCH TV show. It was boiling hot that day and the first time I passed her laying in the grass I didn’t even see her. Ten minutes after I was in my office I realized I had left my computer charger in the car. I went back to get it, passed her again and still didn’t see her. But on my way back to the office I noticed something laying very still in the grass right next to the wall of the studio. She was flat and motionless. I thought for sure I was looking at a dead cat, probably hit by a car on Cahuenga and tossed there to get her out of the road. I went over to her and picked her up. She was limp, her eyes rolled back in her head, but breathing shallowly. I took her into my office, put water in my hand and put her head next to it but she didn’t move at first. I thought she had cooked in the heat. But then she stuck her tongue out and started licking the water. I gave her more and she started to come around. She was covered in soot so I took her into the bathroom and gave her a lukewarm bath to clean her up and try to get her core temperature down as quickly as was safely possible. After a few hours of hydration therapy she was up and about. At first she wasn’t friendly, but that changed very quickly. Once she was fed and rested she became a typical kitten. Less than 24 hours after I found her she was playing and full of mischief. She’s got tons of energy and is very affectionate, which leads me to believe that we may have fallen victim to a long con. She could have been acting just so she could quit walking the streets of Hollywood.

TL2I don’t know if she got separated from her family and is feral or if she was dumped by some idiot, but I feel very lucky to have found her when I did. And I’m amazed no one else on that street had seen her sooner. Just goes to show that it pays to not be staring at your phone all the time. How many dying cats have people walked right past because they were texting? Get your heads back into the world, people!

Likes: Tuna, biting, playing, typing, running, jumping, drinking, eating, sleeping in hair.

Dislikes: Extreme heat, noise of any kind not made by her and some noises that ARE made by her.

How has she changed your life?

I have lots of new scratches and bites on my arms and ears. She’s a nibbler and cannot stop playing! She also walks on my keyboard whenever possible, rewriting my material. It has not improved the work.

TL1Any bad habits or odd quirks or foods?

She’s a kitten. Everything about her is odd – but lovable. She does like to sleep in my hair, which I find odd. I assume that’s because she is missing her mother and siblings. She is also able to type in Esperanto. Very strange.



Terrill Lee Lankford is a novelist and filmmaker. He’s the author of Earthquake Weather, Blonde Lightning, Shooters, and the recently published short story collection, North of Sunset. He is currently working as a writer and co-producer on the series, BOSCH, based on Michael Connelly’s novels.