Regrettably, none of us will get to be cats. Most of us will never write a published physics paper either, let alone a highly respected one. But somehow, in the 1970s, a phenomenal feline named Chester managed to do all of this under the tutelage of his human, physicist Jack H. Hetherington. He even had a pawesome pen name -- F.D.C. Willard. Yes, really.
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On 18 October 1963, the Centre national d'études in France was set to send a small cat named Félix into space. After lagging behind its Soviet and American competitors, France was eager to stake its claim in the space race -- with cats, for some reason. But on launch day, the mischievous little beast went missing -- and an accidental heroine stepped in to take his place. Her name was Félicette.