Feral Cat Fridays: Meet Mr. Wally – You’ll Be Glad You Did
I’m sure we’ve all known someone we would describe as a “real nice guy” (or gal) but when pressed for details we’d have trouble saying much more. They were always pleasant to be around and you could count on them to be a cooperative and helpful part of whatever was going on. You never expected them to step into the limelight, but underneath that mild demeanor you always felt you could count on them. If a feral cat can be like that, Wally was.
Wally was one of Lanny’s children and got his name in a circuitous play on words involving the resemblance of his brother Stoney to Jackson, who was named for his coat’s resemblance to the rocks in a stone wall. If Stoney got the stones, it left the wall for Wally. But Wally’s personality always reminded me of the persona Wally Cox presented in the old show Mr. Peepers. Pleasant, friendly, but a problem solver underneath. (And I’m not quite that old–I saw that show in reruns as a child.)
This final photo captures Wally’s personality perfectly. It’s late afternoon on the deck and a pile of good friends are napping the day away. On top is MiniMo, who is still napping her afternoons away in a sunny window in my office as I write this. The shiny black cat underneath MiniMo is Comet, my former supervisor and helper. To the left is Silver Streak, lover of morning snacks and medicine doses. To the right is Stoney, on his way to becoming the chief greeter and comforter of the colony. And holding up the pile with only his head and rear-end showing is our hero, Wally. He’s doing his job quietly and everyone appreciates his help.
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Every time I think I’ve seen the cutest among your cats, you come up with another one. Wally as a kitten is darling, and Wally as cat-pile-foundation’s not so bad, either. Of course, I tend to prefer the quiet ones, so I suspect Wally and I would have gotten along just fine.
I was a fan of Mr. Peepers, whose show came along just after Queen Elizabeth’s coronation: maybe the next year. We got our first tv in time to watch the coronation, so I would have gotten in at the beginning of Mr. Peepers. I certainly haven’t thought of him in a while.
When we were living with all those cats every day the cute quotient in the yard could be overwhelming. It’s easy for me to forget how many beautiful cats were out there, but a review of the photos always reminds me. Wally was one of the cutest and his appearance was somehow enhanced by his shy demeanor.
I was familiar with Wally Cox through Mr. Peepers reruns but saw him most often in his many guest roles and his position on the Hollywood Squares game show. I always enjoyed his appearances and never would have guessed that he and Marlon Brando were great friends. That just goes to show that stage presentations and real life personalities are often worlds apart, I suppose.