By Kyle Scott Clauss, Editor-in-Chief
Impeachment hearings have begun, and Richard Nixon is the name on everyone’s lips. Is this the summer of 1974? Hardly—it’s 2019, and Tricky Dick is the most popular cat in town.
Since owner Andrew Callahan moved to South Royalton two years ago to pursue his Master’s degree, Richard Nixon has captured the hearts of many on campus with his creamsicle coat and devil-may-care strut.
“I mean, he’s more popular than I am,” Callahan, now a second-year J.D., told The Forum.
Unlike his namesake, who hailed from the sunny climes of Yorba Linda, Calif., Richard Nixon grew up wandering the mean streets of Barre, Vt.
When Callahan adopted Richard Nixon from the Central Vermont Humane Society in East Montpelier, a staff member brought him into a room with five cats and explained that Richard Nixon—then called “Mandarin”—was “basically the king of the room.”
“He was over sitting in a hammock by the window just staring outside,” said Callahan, a Brooklyn native. “He has this presence about him.”
So why name a cat after the disgraced former president, whom Hunter S. Thompson once memorably described as “so crooked that he needed servants to help him screw his pants on every morning”?
“I’ve always been a big admirer of Richard Nixon,” Callahan said, noting that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was established under his administration.
Upon arriving in South Royalton, Richard Nixon wasted no time endearing himself to the VLS community, even making campaign stops at the local watering hole.
“I was having lunch, and Richard jumped up in the window and everybody in Five Olde said, ‘Oh my God, it’s Richard Nixon!’” Callahan laughed.
Although he has no enemies list, Richard Nixon does have a love-hate, “Kissinger sort of relationship” with a gray, long-haired cat seen around town, Callahan said. His China policy, meanwhile, remains unclear.