I met Cathy, along with Emmanuelle Richard, through Amy Alkon, about five years ago. In early 2003 they threw me a boisterous book party for “The Mailroom.” I get the feeling, though it was never said out loud, that because I took the three of them to lunch soon afterward as thanks, that my good manners was the wedge in the door that let me into Cathy’s world, where, as has been said before and better, a whirlpool of personalities and philosophies, with Cathy in the center, sucked me in. She helped get this aging stay-at-home writer out of the house, and I made some good friends because of her generosity.
Cathy and I weren’t the closest of pals, meaning that we didn’t spend hours dishing, chatting on the phone, going to the movies, having Farmers Market breakfasts. During her final days I never felt my visiting an overcrowded ICU was appropriate; honestly, I didn’t think Cathy would want me to see her in a hospital gown.
We certainly didn’t agree politically, and I think that was true of many in her circle -- a testament to her inclusivity. I'd tease her now and then by (honestly) telling her when I loved a recent piece or post she’d written – even though she was, of course, completely wrong. (Smiley face here.)
More at Native Intelligence.