Fans turned out by the hundreds to see burgeoning media star Grumpy Cat Tuesday evening at Kitson's Santa Monica store.
Event organizers expected at least 500 people would line up for a chance to see Ms. Cat; they estimated more than 800 showed up for a pawtograph by the sour-looking puss. The feline celebrity, who became a viral star last year, already has a movie deal in addition to "Grumpy Cat: A Grumpy Book," which arrived on shelves Tuesday.
She already looked bored by the trappings of fame at Kitson's. There were whispers in the line that "Sharknado" star Ian Ziering was in attendance; those proved to be unfounded. No matter. All eyes were on Ms. Cat.
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There was no dilly-dallying. Fans were rushed through the line; they handed their cameras off, posed next to Ms. Cat, took the photo, and were ushered out, a complimentary Grumpy Cat poster in hand. Some left gifts; one boy offered Ms. Cat an inflatable unicorn horn.
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Ms. Cat barely noticed any of it, content to nap on her lush brown suede-look throne through the scheduled hour and a half. (An extra half hour was generously tacked on to give everyone a chance to meet Ms. Cat).
Her only response to the camera flashes and the squeals of delight from fans was a few twitches of the ear. She didn't even seem to notice when a few fans broke the clearly-stated rules and tried to pet her.
"No touching! No touching Grumpy Cat!" the security staff cried. "There is no touching Grumpy Cat, please!"
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About an hour and a half in, Ms. Cat needed a break. She was brought to a small bowl of water, but did not linger. Grumpy Cat does not have a drinking problem.
Ms. Cat, who also stopped by Book Soup and the Century City Kitson on Century City on Wednesday, had no plans for a book tour, her owner's brother, Bryan Bundesen said. And as impressive as Tuesday night's power puss appearance was, it paled compared to the turnout at South by Southwest a few months ago.
"At South by Southwest we did 1500 people in two hours," Bundesen said.
Ms. Cat had no comment; she cannot speak.
At least a few people were in Kitson Tuesday night to shop. One man wondered what all the fuss was about.
"What is that?" he asked.
A store employee quickly answered: "THAT is Grumpy Cat."