I’ve always wanted a cat of my own. I grew up with a profusion of cats — cats on the sofa, cats in the windows, cats in the shower. But I haven’t had a cat since moving out. To have a cat is a great responsibility, and my brittle spine would surely buckle under the pressure. So I sit here by my window, gazing at the neighbor’s yard, watching him play with his little calico kitten. A vicarious cat is better than none.