About two and a half years ago, I had a skinny, scrawny, beat up flea-ridden kitty show up on my front porch. OSU had just acquired the neighborhoods just south of my street and had begun the process of tearing down those houses, and with that, came a bunch of stray cats. One in particular chose my house.
I already had a cat, Allie, and so I consulted with her first about sharing her food with a needy kitty. She rolled her eyes and ignored me, so I took that as a "yes, Mom, that's what you need to do." I started putting a small bowl of food out on the porch, close to the window.
Each night, I would sit on the porch and here he would come. Running up the steep hill of the lawn just to come and visit with me a bit before he would head out for the night. He constantly thanked me for putting food out for him. I was often brought cricket legs or bird feathers.
It was at this time, I named him Tatum Bell. No reason for that really, just cause.
He slept in the crawlspace beneath the house, and after a couple of months, I decided it was time to see if he could come inside. He showed me he did know how to use the litter box, and Allie continued to ignore him, so I figured he could start sleeping inside at night.
Somewhere in this time frame, I took him to the vet, and we discovered that he has a BB in his chest (who in the HELL would shoot this guy...??) and that he tested positive for feline leukemia. He also weighed in at 8 pounds then.
Well, Tatum Bell is now 14 pounds and has been an indoor cat since I bought my house two years ago. He still tries to get out the front door every now and then, but he for the most part is okay with being spoiled inside.
I knew David, the dog guy, was a keeper when he let his arm go to sleep because he didn't want to disturb Tatum Bell while he took a nap on it. He won't move him if he's still asleep in the bed when he makes it in the morning, so I often come home to find a half made bed with a circle of fur near the pillows. If one of us needs to get up, but have him in our lap, the other one has to go and shake the bag of cat food or open the turkey lunch meat container to get him to bolt up and go in the kitchen. We apparently never want to disturb this cat...
I wanted to take the time to thank this guy for choosing us. He has been an absolute treasure, despite his clawing up my couch and his peeing on the carpet in the den...