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UCLA librarian adopts Powell ‘Library Cat’


A UCLA librarian adopted a stray cat that would hang around Powell Library.

A UCLA librarian adopted a stray cat that would hang around Powell Library. Courtesy of Vicki Steiner


A feral tuxedo cat who spent her time watching music performances in the Powell Library rotunda has found a permanent home with a UCLA librarian.

Vicki Steiner, a reference librarian at the UCLA School of Law’s Hugh & Hazel Darling Law Library, remembers how difficult it was to catch Midgley, a feral cat she adopted after it kept sneaking into Powell Library.

Midgley, who was named after English philosopher Mary Midgley, would sit atop the book stacks in Powell Library’s main reading room.

For this, she became known to library staff and students as Library Cat, or L.C. for short.

It took a six-week nightly stakeout and fiber-optic cameras to catch the savvy cat, Steiner said.

“She was very elusive,” she added. “She didn’t want to leave her library.”

Steiner is an animal lover and lawyer who represents nonprofit animal shelters for free. Growing up, Steiner said she was taught to help animals in need.

“I try to make a difference for animals who don’t have a voice and can’t speak for themselves on issues that are adverse for their well-being,” she said.

Midgley is not the first cat found at UCLA that Steiner has adopted. She said she has also adopted a kitten that was found near the dorms in 2007.

Numerous feral cats used to live at UCLA, but fewer cats are on campus now because of the efforts of UCLA staff. Taimie Bryant, an animal law professor who helped catch Midgley and bring her to Steiner, said about 300 cats used to be on campus in the 1980s and it was normal to see a cat when walking on campus at night.

“There really is a wonderful kind of teamwork on campus of animal lovers who want to make a difference in (animals’) lives,” Steiner said.

Steiner said Midgley has become more playful since she started living with her, and she loves it when Midgley walks around the house and headbutts her and the other cats to show affection.

Compiled by Amanda Schallert, Bruin senior staff.

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  • http://www.felkerlaw-italia.com/ nowindow

    Put the videos + metadata on the Digital Library of America – that community appreciates cat stories!

  • rescue – don’t go to breeders

    yay for vicki steiner! so nice!!

  • Vicki Steiner

    Midgley says, thank you! She especially would like to thank Taimie Bryant and Dennis Lyday for their extensive efforts to secure her safety, the librarians at Powell who loved her, and Gayle and Richard who helped care for her until she was adopted.

  • glen broemer

    If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth, right? the Democrats’ great accomplishment is producing the political equivalent of a Rodney King video, clearly demonstrating the lies of the right, the right Hilary Clinton correctly identified as a vast conspiracy. See Central District of California Cases, 01-4340, 03-9097, 08-5515, , 10-5193, US Tax Court 12000-07L –though I think you want to view my US Tax Court Appeal to the 9th Circuit for a good account of their day to day assaults, a few month time slice indicative of a decade of assault, and, when it’s completed, 9th Circuit 11-56043.

    Typically operating through puppets–including puppets in the judiciary–the right wing has for decades been committing crimes and trying to classify them to cover them up, a move explicitly forbidden by the Code of Federal Regulations. They’ve killed several of my pets and routinely shoot energy weaponry at me and my pets, despite my calls to the police, the FBI, Congress, and despite my petitions in court.

    • zoophiliac

      you’re weird dawg