New York-based photographer Brooke Goldman was dead on her feet when she saw one of the funniest sights of her life. She had just dragged herself out of bed to walk her travel-bound boyfriend to the train station, and was wandering through the city in a sleepy haze. While walking past one building in her neighborhood of Astoria, Queens, she noticed something off about the small nativity scene set up in front of it, specifically that the manger’s usual occupant had been replaced. Sitting in the red basket instead was a very round and very grumpy cat.

“I was laughing pretty hard, especially at the fact that the cat looked pretty angry as well. I was invading his space, but I couldn’t pass up the moment,” Goldman told Bored Panda. Judging by the feline’s expression, he was going for more of a ‘Grinch’ vibe than a ‘joy to the world’ one, but whether he liked it or not, he definitely inspired at least a little bit of holiday cheer. “I frankly can’t get over the whole thing because it truly is one of the funniest things that has ever happened to me,” Goldman said.

Since she didn’t feel like keeping all of that positivity to herself, Goldman snapped a pic of the scowling Scrooge and shared it on the Catspotting Facebook group. From there, it took off like a rocket. “It started off as a silly image in my neighborhood that is now being posted and shared all over the internet, I’m being interviewed, and it’s becoming a meme. This is a dream come true in the goofiest of ways,” Goldman said of the experience.

Brooke Goldman is a Rochester Institute of Technology graduate from Florida who now calls NYC home. Though she currently works for a still life and beauty photo agency, she did admit that animal photos will always hold a special place in her heart. “I only use Facebook for looking at animal photos; I’ve turned a possibly toxic social environment into something incredibly humorous and positive for myself in using it in this way… Definitely expect more animal photography from me!” she told us. She’s also working on a project that will juxtapose scenes of mundane office life against a fantastical ladies’ convertible racing club that lives on the open road, so be sure to check out her website to see its development in real-time.

More info: Brooke Goldman

When you think of a nativity scene, this is usually what you picture in your head, right?

Image credits: tommyvercetti

Well, one cat in New York decided to switch up the story a bit, and was spotted by photographer Brooke Goldman

Image credits: Brooke Goldman

Image credits: Brooke Goldman

“I really do believe that a good animal pic can cure anything”

Image credits: Brooke Goldman

Though we’re sure he didn’t mean to, he inspired some major holiday cheer on the Internet

Is this cat-tivity better than the original nativity? Tell us below!