If I Can't Pet One... / 11 Years Old / Mr. Kitty Cat... / Premise / Why? (Japanese: 「触れないなら」 「11才」 「ねこさん...」 「設定」 「何で?」) is the ninth episode of Azumanga Daioh.
At a movie theater, Sakaki watches a film about a girl who finds a stray cat, and is emotionally affected by it. At school, Kaorin shows off photos of her new kittens to Sakaki. This inspires her to attempt to photograph a cat she finds, however this one prevents her from obtaining a clear shot of it. Sakaki later spots Chiyo in a cat costume, though she helps Chiyo carry it back to her home, since Chiyo had a hard time wearing it. Back in class, Chiyo reveals that her birthday is coming up soon. Chiyo prefers to be taller in order to be cool, but Sakaki prefers to be shorter in order to be cute. Yomi concocts to organize a birthday party for Chiyo. Sakaki envisions both Chiyo and herself in ribbons, to different effects. Sakaki goes in pursuit of a gift. A cat notebook is taken by a girl when Sakaki is distracted, and a toy cat malfunctions as she reaches for it. She is then led to a crane game full of stuffed animals, picking up two plush cats after three tries. At Chiyo's house, the guests arrive and present their gifts. Tomo gives Chiyo a magic wand, but this fails to impress her. Yomi gives her a book, and Sakaki gives her one of the plush cats from the crane game. Osaka also gives her a plush cat, which Sakaki recognizes as Chiyo-Father. Chiyo and Tomo then argue whether the Yomiuri Giants or the Hanshin Tigers will win the upcoming baseball season. The group takes a stroll through a park with Mr. Tadakichi, seeing and enjoying a gorgeous sunset. It is a moment of pure bliss for everyone, but none more so than Sakaki, who for the first time in her life, is among friends who care.
Sakaki tells Chiyo that the name of the stuffed animal she gave her is "Mon Petit". In Japan, Mon Petit is a brand of cat food made by Purina, and it is pronounced "Monpuchi".
Chiyo and Tomo discuss which baseball team is better, the Yomiuri Giants or the Hanshin Tigers. In Japan, baseball teams are owned by companies. The Giants are owned by Yomiuri, a newspaper company, and they are based in Tokyo. The Tigers are owned by Hanshin, a railway company, and based in Osaka. These two teams have been rivals for a very long time. The plushie sitting on Chiyo-chan's shelf is a giabbit. It is the mascot for the Giants.
Due to similar team colors, many American fans are liable to confuse the Yomiuri Giants with the San Francisco Giants.
What exact date Chiyo-chan's birthday is.
How old Tomo thought Chiyo really did look.
If ribbons were Chiyo's only present from the year before, though it's highly unlikely, given how wealthy she was established to be several episodes ago.
Who the girl with the bunny backpack was.
What the book Yomi gave Chiyo was about.
Sakaki crying when seeing the film.
Sakaki tries to take pictures of cats, but they start jumping in all directions, making her photos useless.
Chiyo and Sakaki discuss their height preferences, and when Osaka suggests Sakaki took Chiyo's height away, Chiyo begs her to give it back.
Chiyo's birthday party. Tomo at first jokes by giving Chiyo a box with "feeling" written in it as a present.
The big girl behind us cried lots and lots too. She cried through the whole movie.
— Child moviegoer (on Sakaki)
Uh-huh! They look so fluffy and soft it's like they're just two balls of fur.
— Osaka (on Kaorin's kittens, when Chiyo said they were adorable)
Uh … If I want to order copies … Do I write it in the back?
— Sakaki (to Kaorin, on the photos)
Will these photos be alright for you, ma'am?
— Camera shop woman (to Sakaki, on her blurry photos of Kamineko)
But just looking at her, you'd swear she was a lot younger than eleven years old, huh.
— Tomo (on Chiyo)
Being cute rather than cool is … is … stronger!!
— Sakaki (to Chiyo)
Sakaki-san, have you been taking all the height away from me?
Even I'm old enough that I don't believe that stuff anymore.
— Chiyo (to Tomo, when Tomo said she could use a magic wand to grow taller)
Fine! So what if my present didn't make anyone happy or stir up any interesting conversation, it's not like I care!