the tuxedo cat
Chuck, my first foster fail & a beautiful trick played by the universe. A beautiful trick, indeed.
Chuck is a cat with a lot of…personality! Charles is also a cat with many nick names.
Let’s start with his name: the origin of Charlee.
His official & documented name is Charles Barkley, however he’s most often called Chuck by those who know him best. He’s also known as Charlee, Chunk, Charles, Chuckles or Chunk-masta-flex on the streets…you get the point.
The reason I tell you that Chunk has a lot of personality is because I could never truly capture the essence of this quizzical and fascinating feline in such few words. Chuck & Chuck alone, sees himself as the resident security at the Carrots&Carlos Inn. He’s also a mischievous, waggish & quirky individual who marches to the beat of his own drum. Some say he is a hot mess (some=me), but he provides endless hilarious stories & happiness- along with reminders of practicing patience. Like when he wakes us up because he doesn’t like to poop alone…I’m not kidding.
Chuck was my first foster fail- what I later realized was an incredibly important moment in my life. After working a late shift during my college job, I was strolling up my front walk when I saw a small furry body sitting on a car hood a few down. I greeted him, scratched his little scabby head & checked him for injuries. He looked so pathetic. He wasn’t obviously injured or in any pain, but he was skinny, riddled with scabs & had a presence that made me believe he probably wouldn’t make it much longer in the world if he had to do it on his own.
Since it was the middle of the night I knew I wouldn’t have luck calling for help. I turned to walk home & decide what to do & without skipping a beat, Chuck followed.
This was the moment that Chuck chose to spend his life with me- regardless of how hard I fought it. Let me explain…
A short while down the road, after getting Charlee fed, healthy & neutered, I decided it was time for him to find his forever people. However, to my confusion, those people never came. On several occasions I home-tested Chuck to potential adopters who wanted to add him to their families based on his dapper looks & fascinating personality. He pretty much gave them all the middle finger.
Immediately after he was let out of his kennel during a home-visit he would try to fight any cat in the house & begin peeing on their stuff- blatantly ignoring any affection being shown by the potential adopters. I was mortified. Who was this cat? This sweet, goofy cat that I had been hanging out with for months didn’t even seem to exist during these meet & greets.
This is how I know that Chuck chose me.
I was single, going to college & working a full time job- I didn’t have a lot of time on my hands, & Charlee didn’t mind that. He napped all day while I was gone & smothered me with affection when I was home. He would wrap himself around my neck & sleep while I was doing school work. I would often find him nestled up on the kitchen counter under the window peeking at the birds between naps. He had the place basically to himself, with a box to shit in and delicious food to eat, out of the elements, with perfect napping windows. He was set for life & he knew it.
I’m happy to share that Chuck is indeed set for life. This chunky little bastard loves his digs at the Carrots&Carlos Inn- he’s not going anywhere!
Today, he spends his days napping, snacking & playing early alarm clock for his father- even after repeat requests to cease. He enjoys his people & his dogs, & basks in the simplicity of life as an indoor cat. It’s quite likely that Chuck thinks he is one of the dogs, as he even joins them in using the potty outdoors & greeting us when we arrive home.
Chunk is a mischievous, plump, special-needs kitty who loves getting all the things he desires…no matter the cost. He shows his love in unusual & unexpected ways- without him our lives would just be too simple. Chunk has been my ride or die for almost a decade & I couldn’t be happier to call him my homie.
Chuck will always remain my first foster fail & one of the best mistakes I’ve ever made!
Be nice to a cat today.
Chuck demands it.