Today is the 12th anniversary of the finding of Oliver. Twelve years ago today I went to visit my folks on a noisy, warm summer afternoon. While Dad was mowing the lawn he heard the sound of a cat crying. How he did that over the sound of the mower, the neighborhood rock band practicing, and the planes flying overhead I will never understand. Investigating, he found the Ollie Beast with his head stuck in the chain link fence. His head must have been huge even as a kitten.
I was not a cat person until I found the Big Giant Heed but I knew right away that I was meant to take this cat home. He was clearly freaked out but when I called to him he came right out from under one of the cars in the driveway and came right to me. He wouldn't go to anyone else. I carried him around the neighborhood knocking on doors but no neighbors claimed him and no one ever posted a sign. There were many growing pains over the years as I learned how to be a cat owner and he learned...ummm ...well, he taught me how to be a cat owner. He is a complicated feline but he is my Beast and I am extremely fortunate to have him.
I hope everyone celebrates in proper Ollie style by demanding snuggles and rubs on the belly from loved ones; or let's be honest, really anyone who is around. He isn't a particularly discerning snuggler. Celebrations can also include napping, eating of cat grass or leafy greens, crying forlornly if you can see the bottom of your plate through piles of food, not letting anyone touch your feet and taking a thoroughly unsatisfying poop.