I will be impressed if anyone can top the amount of fur monsters under the care of this week’s Featured User. Wally01 happily cares for seven dogs and twelve cats! I can hardly handle my two little dudes. Wally01 is also a retired teacher with a career and education spent in a single school.
We’d love to hear the story behind your username!
My user name comes from a furkid who graced me with his presence for ten years. One of my former students found him as a stray but couldn’t keep him. She called and asked if I could take him and find him a home. He found one, of course, with me. His name was Wallace Wylie, Wally for short. He developed diabetes at age six. Twice a day he got his insulin injections. If I was at school, I had permission to go home to give his meds. He was the perfect patient and never had a problem with his condition. However, at age ten he developed cancer. Before I had to make that dreaded final decision, he made it for me and passed away in his sleep. I will always miss that sweet guy.
How long have you been a member of the Cheezburger community and what made you want to join?
I’ve been a member since 2010. My brother passed away in January of that year and I was grieving and depressed. He was the last immediate family member that I had left. I saw a LOL that made me smile when I had thought that I’d never smile or laugh again. I lurked for a while, and then I decided to make a profile. It’s been fun ever since. ICHC was a lifesaver for me.
What do you look for in a Cheez friend, and what’s the best way to make a new friend?
I like friends who have the same love for animals that I have whether they currently have furkids or not. I look at their LOLs, pictures, and friends list. If we seem compatible, I accept their friend request or send them a friend request.
What is your favorite site on Cheezburger and why?
I started out with I Can Has Cheezburger, and it is still my favorite. It is “home base” for me. I think the creativity of the contributors there is fantastic. I can always get a laugh or a smile.
What is it about Cheezburger that makes you happy?
I love the LOLs and the friends that I’ve made. The best and most kind-hearted people are found on Cheezburger. I didn’t think at my age I’d make so many new and interesting friends. I was wrong!
Tell us something super interesting about yourself—an embarrassing story, a quirky habit, something that will make us laugh!
So many stories, so little time! I don’t know where to start. There is the time We lost my grandmother’s teeth, her lower plate and found it about a week later under a steamer trunk in our hallway. It had shot right under there like a hockey puck!
If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? Cheezburgers?
One meal, hmmm! I would probably choose hamburgers. They can be accessorized in so many ways.
If you could create a new feature for Cheezburger members to use on our sites what would it be, and why do we need it?
I would love to see the collectibles revived. I loved those silly little things. It was so much fun to get a new one or trade for one that was needed. We shared, swapped, and bartered. It was a wonderful time.
What else do you like to do when you’re not on the Internet?
I am co-director of our local library, and I work two afternoons a week. I also have some older friends who don’t drive outside our county limits. I do the “driving Miss Daisy” thing several times a month for their doctor’s or other appointments. Most of my time I take care of “The Herd”, my rescue dogs. Our county is very small and poor. We don’t have an animal shelter or rescue. Well, I guess, we do, and I seem to be “it”.
Where do you often find inspiration for your LOLs?
Sometimes just a word or a phrase will send me looking for the appropriate picture to make a LOL. I don’t make as many LOLs as some do. I do pretty well with a theme to guide me. My muse likes to nap a lot.
Do you have any favorite vacation spots? Is there somewhere you’ve never been that you’d like to go?
I love the mountains and the desert. I hiked the Grand Canyon from rim to rim many years ago. It was a fabulous adventure. I climbed Mt. Elbert in Colorado, the highest peak in the Rocky Mountains. I didn’t make it all the way to the top. At one point the climb became too steep for me to go farther. My knees kept hitting me in the chin. Have I mentioned that I’m very short, or as I like to put it-vertically challenged? Anyway, the view was spectacular.
If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it?
That’s the easy one. I would give it all away. Animal rescue groups, my friends, and cheezfriends would be recipients. I would love to see their faces when their bank balances showed up.
Do you have any animal companions, or have you had any in the past? What is special about them?
I have seven dogs and twelve cats. I also feed feral cats every day. I consider them my family now. I was raised on a family farm. We’ve always had animals, all kinds of animals and birds. My grandmother loved every animal she ever met. I guess I got that gene from her. Thank you, Gran!
You were a teacher for 33 years! That is quite an achievement. What did you teach? Any good (or harrowing) teaching stories you’d like to share with us?
I taught in elementary school, grades five and six for many years and then remedial reading and math just before I retired. I have taught every subject except science. Keeping me away from science equipment was a wise move on someone’s part. When you live in a very small town, you get to see the students grow up. I retired when I started seeing the grandchildren of my first students enrolling. I entered my school in 1953 as a first grade student. I taught there for thirty-three years and retired in 2002. Our county sheriff is a former student and so is the General Manager for the New York Giants, Jerry Reese.
I believe I’ve heard through the grapevine that you’re an avid reader. Favorite genre, author or book? What are you reading right now?
I don’t really have a favorite genre or author. I read everything, including the back of cereal boxes. I do have a fondness for authors Greg Iles and Nevada Barr. My favorite book is To Kill a Mockingbird. Right now I’m reading Jenny Kalahar’s latest, The Find of a Lifetime.
Thanks for all the good you do in the world Wally01, and for the great interview.
Have a great weekend everyone!