Minnie the Cat Gets a Bum Rap

By Adele

McSorley’s Old Ale House in New York City’s East Village has a resident feline, Minnie the Second. A female patron, Cheryl Sibley, 53, of New Jersey, claims Minnie attacked her so viciously back in October 2009 that she had to be hospitalized. She has filed a lawsuit.

The 156-year-old pub has always had cats. After the Health Department fined the place for a cat on the bar, they aren’t allowed to roam freely during drinking hours, so how Minnie crossed paths with Sibley remains a mystery. Nor does McSorley’s owner, Matthew Maher, recall the incident. You’d think someone would have yelled if a blood-thirsty feline was mauling a customer.

Here’s some video of Minnie, the deadly predator:

I managed to reach Minnie by phone. It’s unlikely they’ll allow her to testify in her own defense at the trial, so she wants to set the record straight here.

Adele: Do you remember the night Cheryl Sibley was in McSorley’s?

Minnie: No. I was out back. I play by the rules.

A: So I guess you can’t shed any more light on what she’s saying you did to her?

M: As a matter of fact, I can, if you wanna hear the truth. But the Health Department ain’t gonna like it. When this doll claims I “attacked her,” I was out back playing bouncer to the rats.

A: Rats!

M: Yeah, Adele. It’s New York. If Sibley felt something warm and fuzzy gnawing on her, it was vermin — although I’d even doubt that. Not to toot my own horn, but I’m a almost a legend as a ratter.

A: So you’re saying if anything did bite or scratch Ms. Sibley, it was a rat?

M: I’d stake my ninth life on it. And I wish her rotsa ruck getting one of those guys to show up — let alone pay up — in court. They’d just as soon give her the plague, if you know what I mean.

So there you have it. To further prove her lovability, Minnie told me that she’s known among her many admirers as “Minnie the Moocher.”

(Thank you to Cats Working reader, and my namesake, Adele, for sending the lead for this story from Eater.)


10 Responses to Minnie the Cat Gets a Bum Rap

  1. mauigirl says:

    I am sure of Minnie’s innocence! Sounds like trumped-up charges to me! Look at that purrcat, she wouldn’t harm a flea!

  2. zappa says:

    My mom has been to McSorley’s and she agrees that if a furry ANYTHING brushed up against the complainant it was probably a NYC gangsta rat or a furry fratboy.From the looks of Minnie in her video,she’s had a few herself and she ain’t fighting nobody.That Human needs to stop drinking or start ordering doubles


  3. catsworking says:

    Hi, mauigirl! Besides the fact that Minnie wasn’t allowed in the bar when customers were there, you have to ask yourself, why would any cat just pounce on one stranger in a (presumably) crowded room unless the woman was doing something to taunt the cat, and why wouldn’t the woman have confronted the owner about her injuries on the spot?

    The whole thing lawsuit like a dead rat to me.

  4. Marina says:

    Ohhhhhhh, that’s one vicious looking putty-tat!!! Run, everyone, run!!!

    I hate people who lie…

  5. adele says:

    Adele, you make me proud that I gave you that lead. I truly feel that thanks to you, Minnie was able to tell her side of the story. An excellent piece of feline investigative journalism.

  6. catsworking says:

    Adele, what’s even better is that Minnie gave me an open invitation any time I’m in the Big Apple to hang out with her at the back of McSorley’s and bounce rats!

  7. catsworking says:

    Marina, what I find fishy about the whole situation is that this lawsuit is only coming to light a good year after the incident itself. Why did the woman wait so long? If she had medical bills, it seems she would have approached the owner of McSorley’s immediately upon receiving them to see if he would pay up without going to court, yet it doesn’t seem he knew anything about her alleged injuries until he was slapped with a suit.

    Her behavior would seem to indicate a shameless grab for money she doesn’t deserve at the expense of a good cat’s reputation. On the other hand, newspapers never report all the facts, so maybe we’re only seeing a fraction of what’s really going on.

  8. adele says:

    Somehow, Adele, I don’t see you as a rat bouncer, but I’m sure you and Minnie would enjoy a little girl talk. Maybe she could sneak in and make you a Cosmo; I’ll bet she has mad bartending skills.

  9. Tuxi says:

    Methinks this broad had too many drinks and has a history of it, and now is broke and sober, so she finally wants to recoup her losses. What a turdhead! If she doesn’t like cats, I hope a junkyard dog takes a sample of her!

  10. catsworking says:

    Tuxi, you’re back!!

    The belated timing of the suit is definitely suspicious, but maybe the press just got around to reporting it. Either way, we think the suit is totally without merit. No way a cat’s going to inflict hospital-worthy damage on a human without anybody hearing it — either from the cat or the human.

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