A cat walks into a bar … and becomes an internet sensation

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — It’s an old story: first they start sneaking out, then wandering the neighborhood and staying out all night, until one day, a cat walks in to a bar.

Before you know it, his new friends are lining up to buy him drinks. That’s just a typical Monday night for Cairo, the bar-hopping cat known as the Mayor of Kenwick.

“The world’s most interesting cat,” said Theo Scripps, Cairo’s ostensible owner. “It’s kind of embarrassing, my cat’s a lot more popular than I am.”

Cairo, who is about 7, has his own Facebook page, Cairo the Magnificent, and neighbors in Kenwick regularly post their encounters with the friendly ginger cat.

There’s Cairo making himself at home on a stranger’s porch or couch or even a bed (he’s been known to spend the night) or wandering into an office or swinging by the Ashland Elementary playground. He’s been sighted at least as far away as Woodland Park to the south and the JIF plant across Winchester Road to the north.

But things hit a new high when Cairo discovered a new kind of nightlife.

Scripps, who lives on Aurora with his wife, Dawna, his 15-year-old daughter, and Cairo and their two dogs, said that on Sept. 25 he was walking the dogs on his usual route. He likes to swing by Mirror Twin on National Avenue and get a beer then continue around the neighborhood.

“I usually check to see if Cairo is following us, but I didn’t notice him until we got to the brewery,” Scripps said. When Scripps came out, Cairo was gone, so he thought the cat headed home.

Instead, Cairo went next door to Cosmic Charlie’s and climbed up on a barstool.

People in the bar recognized him: “Have a friendly cat that strolled into Cosmic Charlie’s,” posted Michael Easter on the Kenwick Neighborhood Association Facebook page. “Think it’s Cairo. He’s found a stool and content.”

He also posted a photo of Cairo giving himself a bath.

The night of Sept. 26, Cairo was back at the bar, on his stool, after a stop by Mirror Twin to say hello to the brewers.

“We had this cat come into the brewery and he/she is super friendly,” Mirror Twin’s Derek De Franco posted with a photo of assistant brewer Doug Price holding Cairo.

“I think you have Cairo, the Mayor of Kenwick,” someone replied.

Scripps knew something was up: He suddenly had loads of new followers on Cairo’s page. Then he saw the pictures.

“Every time I see that one of him at the bar, I can’t stop laughing,” he said.

Scripps offered to settle up Cairo’s tab at Cosmic Charlie’s, if necessary. That seems unlikely, given all the people on Facebook offering to buy him drinks.

Now that Cairo’s had a taste of pub-crawling, apparently he likes it.

Dawna Scripps posted an “APB” for Cairo on Facebook the night of Sept. 27:

“Anyone know where he is now? It’s bedtime .”

A neighbor responded: “Check the bars.”

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