The littlest Rugby

Two years ago, I rescued Rugby. He was a teensy, tiny kitten wandering around on the side of a bridge looking like he might either wander into traffic or fall off a very tall bridge into the New River. His dead mother (I presume she was his mother although I have not seen any paperwork to prove this) was lying nearby. I turned the car around and walked halfway across the bridge to rescue this tiny baby. He was an orange tabby and he was weak, sick and his eyes were messed way up. I took him home, obviously. I felt terrible for him. That was all before I knew him.

We named him Rugby. I don’t remember why. I wanted to name him something classic like Frank but the husband was set on Rugby. It was a good choice. His whole self is like the game of Rugby, rough and tumble. We took him to the vet about ten times; bottle fed him, lovingly wiped his eyes and put drops in them about four times a day. He sat on David’s shoulder. It was very sweet. His recovery went on for two months. His eyes still look crazy. He reminds me of the old man from “The Tell-Tale Heart.”

As soon as Rugby could move, he was the meanest cat ever. It would seem that he is not being intentionally mean but that is only because his eyes are cloudy and you can’t see the evil in them. If you want to know what life with Rugby is like, imagine that you are living with a one hundred pound puppy with no scruples. He knocks over everything. What he doesn’t destroy, he plays with. The more inappropriate the toy, the better and the happier he is. The other cats hate him because he is also an attack cat. He attacks whatever walks by him. He spends 25% of his day clawing up furniture, 25% eating people food from the counter or right off your plate when you aren’t looking, 25% breaking priceless heirlooms, 20% scratching people’s eyes out and 5% sleeping.

I am trying very hard to live a peaceful life. I am trying not to get super angry about everything ever. I manage ok when I’m fighting hoards of holiday shoppers at Wal-Mart and I need diapers. I’m ok when people cut me off in traffic (well not ok but I don’t rear end them usually). Little Rugby and his evil, little self is my kryptonite. He makes me want to scream and cry every time he does his little evil thing. He tortures the other cats and they are very sweet and don’t deserve the hell that they are living.

Rugby is now a year and a half old. Occasionally, we will think we have seen an improvement in his behavior but as soon as we say it, we catch him doing something utterly terrible. If Rugby were a person, he would be a cold-hearted sociopath. Ricki Lake would do specials on him and warn people everywhere to stay away.

You might be sitting around, drinking some delicious $5 cabernet and thinking about how nice the Christmas tree looks when BAM the Christmas tree has been knocked asunder and you have been attacked in the face. Most recently, Rugby attacked his own grandmother in the face. In the face! She was very gracious about it. Sigh.

Now that I know Rugby, I have a terrible suspicion that his mother was not only dead but that he was the one that killed her.

I’m warning you about Rugby as a public service announcement. If you come visit me, wear long sleeves and long pants, don’t wear shiny earrings and pray. We have a fully stocked first aid cabinet but you may need a nerve pill. Consider yourself warned.


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