Nikola Tesla is a famous inventor known for discovering alternating current (AC). Yet even this brilliant man might not have discovered AC current if it wasn’t for his black cat named Macak.

Tesla wrote, “In the dusk of the evening as I stroked Macak’s back, I saw a miracle which made me speechless with amazement. Macak’s back was a sheet of light, and my hand produced a shower of crackling sparks loud enough to be heard all over the house … My mother seemed charmed — ‘Stop playing with the cat,’ she said. ‘He might start a fire.’ But I was thinking abstractly. Is Nature a gigantic cat? If so, who strokes its back?… I cannot exaggerate the effect of this marvelous night on my childish imagination. Day after day I have asked myself, what is electricity?”

So the next time you use electricity, thank Tesla and his black cat, Macak, for making your life easier. To read more about how cats have inspired people throughout history, click here.