Knowing these things and looking into the face of that little orange fluff ball made me decide to bring him home to live with me. His eyes were still blue and he was still nursing a bit but we had become quite proficient with bottle feeding baby kittens having taken in both Thelma and Louise the year before and needing to bottle feed them both.
Ralphie quickly established himself as a character and quite opinionated too. Never one to shy away from making himself heard when the food bowl ran low he would race ahead to trip you so you were sure to know what he wanted.
Later in life he developed that strange snaggle tooth that I found sooo incredibly endearing.
He always knew when you were having a bowl of cereal and insisted on finishing what was left of the milk in the bottom of the bowl...always.
The dogs feared Ralphie and he knew it. He liked to stand in the path that he knew they wanted to go in because he knew they wouldn't dare go if he would just sit there...calmly, whistling while they danced from paw to paw in anticipation.
My grumpy boy.
Forever in my heart.