Monday, March 31, 2008

In like a lion...

I spent last weekend at the beach.. I spent this weekend wrapped in a comforter huddled around the DVD player with Dogger and The Kitty. March comes in like a lion and out like a cold, wet, sad baby lamb.

They invented DVD players for this kind of weekend. Saturday I half-heartedly did some laundry and watched three hours worth of a not-very-good BBC lawyer drama. Think bad The Practice crossed with say, anything on Lifetime. Not to say “really, really bad” but also not to say “quality” or “worthwhile” or “good”. But it was a cold, rainy and cold and rainy Saturday and my options were limited.

I still did get things done though. I got the laundry done, I heated up some soup, I finished up some left over breakfast Danish and figured out a way to keep the ottoman from slip, sliding away from the chair. And then, I went to Broskey and Alphagals where Alphagal gave me a very yummy still-warm-from-the-oven loaflette of bread. After that, Dogger, The Kitty and I watched The Lake House, a not at all bad for a cold, wet, rainy Saturday night Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock movie all in all, a very productive day.

And then it was Sunday. I went to Church and filled up the car. It was still cold and rainy and now I didn’t have any laundry to do and I had run out of DVDs! Anthony Bourdain beckoned. He was in Ghana, where he very much enjoyed the food, the country, the people and their Kente cloth, and then he was on to Namibia where he did not enjoy the food, (think dirt, no pots and pans or plates or sanitation), the country, the people or anything else. I dozed while he did a yeoman's job of not barfing his way across the Kalahari . No matter what desert Bourdain was trekking through, I had to make hot chocolate. Had to it was that cold and nasty. Sitting inside, under a blanket with Dogger and The Kitty dancing attendance, I had to make hot chocolate. Brr. Last week I was sitting on the beach.

And then it was time to do something, anything. I decided to take Dogger for a walk. Dogger thought I was joking and suggested that staying inside was a better idea. She also suggested that perhaps we should see what was airing on Animal Planet. I suggested that she needed to go out because they do not make a litter box that large.. She said that she possesses the largest bladder in the animal kingdom and she had been out just been outside yesterday. In my defense, when we set out it was only drizzling. By the time we came home, soaked to the bone and cold.

I decided it would be a good time to give Dogger a nice warm shower after the nasty, cold shower I had just treated her to. I am glad to say instead of the scent of wet dog wafting through the house, now my house carries the scent of Pantene with just a wiff of anti-flea. Dogger is barking at me, she wants me to go back to the TV and watch Mythbusters with her.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


Saturday, March 29, 2008

Picture this: Not in the Raleigh paper

Not pictured, the weekly gaggle of aging anti-war activisits , also not pictured, every cop in Southeast Raleigh!


Friday, March 28, 2008

Friday Cat Blogging

World Peace Bunny

Train of Thought

Dogger and I took our walk around Dix yesterday. There is a tree in the parking lot of my building that I decided was just about to hit peak pretty and if I wanted a picture of it I would need to do it nower than later-er. As it turned out, "now" worked for my schedule. I left work, went home, changed clothes, grabbed the dog and went back to work. My sop to my off duty-ness was to park my car as far from my building as I could. I wish the grounds were a little more colorful but whomever designed them must have decided that white was the most calming color, but I kind of doubt that back in the day they really thought all that much about what colors would be the most aesthetically pleasing to their patients Spring at Dix Hill.

And then we came home. I fed Dogger then made my dinner (I know wrong order, the person should eat first. Blah.) and after dinner I was in my chair watching TV and Dogger was on the floor chewing on her bone and I started to feel really guilty - I don't think I pet Dogger enough. How do you quantify that? Should I wait for her to initiate petting? I never thought about this before. I was sitting there watching people talk about digging cool stuff out of their yards and finding priceless art in their crawl spaces and I started to wonder if I pet Dogger enough. I quickly got off my chair and stroked her fur, and she enjoyed it, but she had also seemed to enjoy chewing her bone. How much should I pet her? Right now if I went to pet on her, it would wake her up. I don't think she wants to be woken up right now. She wants to lay there and fart in her sleep. She seems very content.


Speaking of happiness. I watched Enchanted this weekend. It's a very sweet movie. I even liked the songs, which I did not like at all when they were played at the Oscars(tm)- Awards these songs so did not deserve, they were sweet songs, bouncy tunes you can hum but they don't work well outside the context of the movie, they just seem like what they are: A substitute for fifteen pagers of dialogue. I liked one of the songs so much after seeing it in the move that I went to Itunes and bought it. I found didn't like it as much. I miss the pageantry of the big production number it came with. It really needs a cast of thousands to do it justice. Amy Adams seems like a really sweet girl and she has a good voice but she isn't a cast of thousands. Hence, why none of those songs from Enchanted won Oscars(tm). Alen Menken is a talented guy but his songs don't do well out of context and frankly? Music isn't really a visual medium, songs shouldn't need a cast of thousands to be properly enjoyed.

Yesterday at work I do check for a couple of things on every-ones computers to make sure they will be ready for the new payroll launch next week. How sad is it that I am my groups technical person? Anyway, one of the keyboards was so filthy that I am pretty sure I contracted cholera from it. Really.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The times they have a-changed

It was a perfect dog park day. Not too cool, not too warm, breezy but not windy and a good mix of dogs. Sigh. A year ago Dogger woudl have run and played with her friends while I talked with mine. This year Dogger was leashed and we skulked around the perimeter waiting for the small dogs to get out of the small dog park. While we were skulking we ran into a few dogs... A year ago I would have pet the other dog and encouraged Dogger to go play, it was like a mantra go play, go play, go play! This year I held my breath and encouraged the other dog to go away, go away, go away! . I wish along with Doggers life saving pill there was a social life saving pill I could give her too so we could go to the park and go play! go play! go play! I don't know what happened to her over the past year but now I'm afraid to let her off leash at the off leash dog park.

Back when we started going, two years ago now, there were six, eight dogs at the park every day at most. I knew all the people and their dogs. I knew the dogs better then the dog people because I knew all the dogs names. It was calm and nice and we all had a good time. We didn't know each others names, but we saw each other every day and talked for hours. The dogs didn't really know what they were supposed to do, but they liked the attention from the people even if they didn't know what to make of the other dogs. But we all learned about dominance and the role of humping. Sometimes you are the humper sometimes you are the humpee. Boy dogs hump other boy dogs, girl dogs hump other girl dogs, girl dogs hump boy dogs. It's a dog thing.

Times changed. More people started to come with more dogs. Instead of six or eight dogs there were sixteen or eighteen dogs. This leads to nervousness. There also started to be intermittent dog fights. Intermittently, with Dogger as a participant.

These scare the shit out of me whether Dogger was participating or not and they totally kill a good dog park buzz. Everything is nice, it's pretty the dogs are happy, the people are happy and then all of a sudden - Dogagedden breaks out. Once there has been a fight, there is a better than average chance there will be another. It's like an actor "going up" on stage, all it takes is one of them to lose it and all the others start to think about it and hoping it doesn't happen to them and pretty soon it's all they can think about and pretty soon they can't remember their lines either. Fights make everyone tense and pretty soon it spreads to the dogs and all it takes is one new dog to walk in and it can get ugly.

Now, I am phobic. I have developed a phobia about Dogger getting into it with another dog. I take Dogger to the park because she loves it so much and I have such happy memories there and then I wait for her to tear a dogs throat out. I make her stay in the small dog park or failing that option (damn small dogs! Don't they know they are supposed to "think they are large dogs" and "hate" the small dog park? Cut a big dog some slack! and go play in the big dog park with the other little dogs), I make her stay on the leash, in the off leash dog park! Because what if? phobic, phobic, phobic.

Today the small dogs wouldn't leave the small dog park so Dogger and I left early and toured the historic district. We had a nice walk, we went home, I fed her, we both watched some TV and then around seven I took her out again , she was totally perplexed by this change in routine. I told her we were going for another walk for her own good. She wasn't sure about this. She is the only dog in the world that would question getting two walks in an evening.

We walked to the baseball field and I debated the karma of using a new tennis ball I found outside the baseball field on the other side of the tennis court fence. I did use the ball, Dogger thought it was much better than her own old, nasty tennis ball, but, I did leave it at the park when we left, outside the fence where I found it. A little scuffed up but still there should its owner come looking for it.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Places to Go, People to See

I was filling out my calendar at work and I noticed that the month of April it may actually appear that I have a life! True, it is a life measured in visits to health care professionals, but I have plans for April that don’t actually impinge on my work schedule as well. I was shocked too. I have one weekend with my parents and another, all be it just a Saturday, attending my District convention, This is a lot more advanced planning than I am used to.

I need to embrace my sad and pathetic no life while I still can. I need to make it a point to really appreciate and embrace my sitting around doing nothing time while I still have the time. I’m going to make it a point to sleep really late too, while I have no life and no plans and nowhere to go. Having stuff to do really cuts into my busy slothing schedule.

Hopefully, Doggers April vet visit will be the end of her every-three-weeks electrolyte testing. She’s had two good tests in a row and both the vet and I are hoping that this last round will be her last frequent testing. If this round turns out well, we are going to move on to deciding how little pred she needs to stay alert and keep her lethargy down. If she isn’t on any pred she just lays there like a bump, if she’s on too much, she’s a hyper-kinetic, peeing, pain in the ass. Currently, in response to my complaints about her lethargy, the vet has her on 2.5 mg every three days for a total of 5 mg a week. I don’t want her bouncing off the ceiling, I’m just interested in her being a little more lively. The weeks she was on no pred at all, The Kitty who is a competitive sleeper and who’s hobby is power napping, whose waking “hours” are counted in minutes, was more alert more often.

All that laying around had an adverse affect on her. Dogger is fat. Noticeably so. In hopes of combating this, I started her on a diet dog food. I’m not so sure about her new food because nowhere on the bag does it stipulate as a side effect increased flatulence, it would have been nice to be warned. She literally leaves a cloud where ever she goes. She spent most of her weekend in my parents’ basement and now they are going to have to repaint and possibly call in an exorcist to fully rid the space of the evil spirits her behind left behind – And then there are no promises that it won’t just come back! One day I had put Dogger outside and she had been out there for a while. I thought getting her out of the environment would solve the problem? But no! I walked into the hallway and got slapped in the face with a transient odor. It was awful; she can be like a walking cat box.

It was getting so bad for a while I had started to sing Smelly Cat under my breath all day. Sadly for me though, I know exactly I am feeding her.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

A stranger among us

And how was your weekend?Did you have to work on Friday? Godless sodomites! Why do you hate America? Actually, the reason NC state employees get Good Friday off is that once upon a time they got Easter Monday off - And not because the State Legislature was full of Pius Catholics, but so that they and the rest of the State Employees could take off work and watch a basketball game . I kid you not. In years past, for decades, they shut down state government so everyone could watch a basketball game.

If these people could learn to take football that seriously, it would almost make it worth living here.

I just got back from the store because a couple of hours ago I got back from the dentist again, I haven’t been to the dentist in five years and now I’ve gone twice in a week and will go back two more times in the next month. I think they are in cahoots with the chiropractors - Another group that gets its jolly’s locking you into weekly appointments for the rest of your life.. I would almost rather be seeing a chiropractor, those appointments would be covered by my insurance.

I was at the store because the dentist installed an Anne Boleyn, i.e a temporary crown, in three weeks I get Elizabeth II, but in the mean time, I have to be very kind to my mouth, or really, I need to be very kind to my left uppers, nothing crunchy or that requires chewing is to pass my lips. If it requires dentition to eat, I am required to pass it up.

I’ve been doing this all ready, for weeks, I had just hoped that it wouldn’t turn into a thing. I like chewing, I like solid food. I went to the store so that I could broaden my diet beyond tuna and baked potatoes and ramon. I’ve also become a regular at Subway, I am the person who orders their soup. I am hoping that in my time away from McDonald's that they will have mercifully moved on to another Happy Meal toy. I don’t even know what movie the most recent toys came from but every single one of the was ugly. I would open my Happy Meal box and be greeted by one of a series of increasingly unappetizing ogres. Yummy. I threw them away everyday ! I have never thrown away a toy!, even toys I didn’t like, even the stupid cartoon action figures. I felt kind of bad about it but at the same time, if I thought the ogre toys were grisly, I didn’t feel right about passing them on to a kid. I say this as someone who has watched and enjoyed The Dark Crystal many times, on purpose. Sober.

So, food was shopped for. I now have a selection of hearty creamed soups, some very nice, soft, crab cakes, a six pack of fat free, sugar free pudding and a couple of bags of frozen raspberries - I have had the worst kind of raspberry jones! Have you noticed how expensive fresh raspberries are right now? I don’t know if you were smart enough to get into the raspberry futures market, but Wow! Somebody somewhere is making a freaking fortune. Those little buggers are like gold. But what can I say? The heart wants what it wants. Fortunately, my heart can also get pretty excited about frozen bags o’ raspberries too. Good thing to, because otherwise? Total heart break

Monday, March 24, 2008

Monday Photo Blogging

It's the Easter Doggy!

more Easter 2008

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Saturday, March 22, 2008


Friday, March 21, 2008


Thursday, March 20, 2008

And the ratio is...

Dogger had her second electrolyte check yesterday and her ratio is very, very good! 31! The vet said her heart sounded great, her blood pressure is better than it has been in a while and it was very easy to get blood from her this time. It hadn’t been mentioned to me before that her blood pressure had room to get better or that it was difficult to draw blood from her. I’ve known it was difficult to get Dogger back to where they do the blood draws, but no one had ever said anything about difficulty getting the blood out once she was back there. Dogger does not want to go back there and does not co-operate, and now I know why. I was counting down to the first lines of We Shall Overcome this time when Dogger finally decided that she would, after all, allow them to try to take her blood. I think it was the promise of many cookies and three lab techs cooing over her. Dogger can’t resist a good group coo.

Speaking of “many”. Dogger has gained two pounds in three weeks! I had noticed she has been lethargic lately and mentioned to the vet, I had chalked it up to not being on pred anymore. I didn’t even notice that the junk in her trunk was causing her back tires to go flat until the vet pointed it out. She’s not lethargic because she’s ill, she’s lethargic because hauling around all that extra flab is exhausting. When she got sick she was down to eighty-seven pounds, yesterday at her appointment she was ninety-six point five! She has no waist! Her girlish figure has gone to pot. I remember right after she was diagnosed I had her at the park and one of the other dog people came in and took a look at the very wane Dogger and exclaimed “Wow! Did she drop a ton of weight? She looks terrific!” I was like, Well, she is dying, so yeah, I guess she has dropped some weight.. Well, she’s not dying anymore and any weight she’s come in contact with, she’s picked up and taken with her.

And I have been exercising her, above her usual visit to the park. I have also been adding a short walk after we get home. I added the walk component because we’ve been using the small dog park so Dogger hasn’t been getting as much strolling space as she was used to. But, obviously, more exercise is needed. But just in case her lethargy isn’t entirely weight based, the vet put her on back on her low dose pred twice a week until her next check up in three weeks. The good news is that if her ratio is good at that check that we can stop these every-three-week trips to the vet and stretch out the checks to every month and then every three months. Yay!

Dogger is going to back on her old 5mg a day pred regime this weekend because we’re traveling, but maybe if it perks her up a little we can get in some nice long walks to start getting some of that junk out of her trunk, but of course, only if she wants to, do you have any idea how hard it is to ask ninety-six pounds of uncooperative muscle to do something it doesn't want to do?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Designers Guild, things so lovely, so tasteful, so expensive there isn't a price tag to be found.

Five years on, Bush says no regrets on Iraq war
+ "The successes we are seeing in Iraq are undeniable." = 3990 dead US soldiers

As much as you might personally like John McCain or the idea of Hillary Clinton, a vote for either of them is a vote for more war. Think of those candidates and think of five more years of thousands of hidden, flag draped coffins.

If you watched 30 Rock you would know what that means. At present, for our uses, it means I Went To The Dentist And It Cost A Lot Of Money And It Is Going To Cost A Lot More.

And I don't have dental insurance. Double Blergh.

So I went online and looked. I would have been smarter to first have found dental insurance and then found a dentist, because many of the plans list participating doctors and my doctor is not listed on any of them. Not one. And the dentists' office didn't have any hand pamphlets around advertising the dental plans they particularly enjoy accepting. And yes as a state employee I can get dental insurance through my plan - the problem being that the dental insurance is expensive, doesn't fully kick in for three years and from what I have heard, sucks.

The dental insurance offer that fell out of the sky and through my mail slot? Not a good idea, You can bet I called them the minute I walked in my door post-appointment. Sadly for the insurance provider, the girl who answered the phone was in the wrong line of work, she was honest about the plan and told me it was a bad deal. I looked at the fine print and it would only pay for about 20% of a given procedure anyway. So tomorrow, I'm going to call the dentist office and talk to them about what plans they accept and then figure out which of those plans I can afford.

The good news is that my mouth hurts less today then it has. Most likely because I have taken up eating liquids or other soft, warm, low impact foods and I have mastered eating on only one side of my mouth! Also, I think the naughty teeth knew their days were numbered so they went on their best behavior. When they xrayed my mouth and looked around, they didn't find any really harsh surprises. I mean other than the one really broken tooth and the almost broken tooth and one kind of sprained tooth (all in line for crowns!) and a couple of very small cavities and the plaque build up - Plaque can cause pain? Who knew. Did you know that as we age our lower canine teeth start to move closer together? So the pain that I have been feeling and attributing to "my teeth moving", because it reminded me so strongly of the pain of braces? You remember that feeling? the just-tightened-braces pain? It actually was my teeth moving! Who would have thought?

Anyone know of any really good, not terribly expensive, individual dental plans? I'm taking suggestions.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Best Dog Toy Evah


We Didn't Start the Fire

So, here are my choices for after work. I can:

1. Go directly home and blow errands off and decide that elves will just do the errands for me while I sleep, and while the elves are at it, they will also leave me cute shoes.
2. Run Errand, and then go home - it's called prioritizing, somethings aren't as important as others. Tomorrow is only a day away.
3. Run multiple errands, keep thinking of other errands that need to be run and wind up running errands until dawn.

Choice 1, of course would be great as Dogger and The Kitty need me and I like going home but sadly, the elves fear Dogger and The Kitty and won't come to my house. No cute shoes for me. The errands will not run themselves. I have limited time this week and this option is really not the best.

But. The Kitty is running low on both his boutique kibble and his pred. So choice 2 would be go buy the pred and then go home. Tomorrow is another day, he won't run out of pred in the next 24 hours and skipping Sam's would be a nice way to end the day... But that would mean running a separate errand to go buy the pred. I think what I might do actually and to be really efficient, I could go put in my order for the pred at Sam’s and then leave and drive down the street to pick it up the cat food from the cat food store which is coincidentally, not far from Sam’s.

What I am trying to do is spend as little time wasting gas as possible. If I go and do these tasks from work, I am closer to them than if I run home and then go out later after I have pilled and fed and walked Dogger and pilled and fed The Kitty.

I am running out of time. Tuesday Dentist, Wednesday Vet, Thursday, I'm on the road.

I would do these tasks over the rest of the week because the cat food store is conveniently located near a McDonald's and Sam’s sells pizza by the slice – But, I can’t chew right now… I can chew, my jaw works just fine, well, as far as I know… The jaw works the teeth do not, or really they do "work", they haven’t fallen out or gone soft, they just would prefer I not use them in a chewing capacity at present. They have made it clear they would like to take on more of an advisory role for the time being - That advice being to eat soft food.

I am going to the dentist Tuesday. I called the dentist Monday and they reminded me that I had not been there in, um, a while. I told them that it was true I hadn’t been to the dentist in um, quite a long time; I have been brushing most of my teeth frequently and in fact multiple times, every day. Okay, twice a day, but more than once and I have graduated to a battery operated tooth brush that promised me that it would do a much better job than my old manual tooth brush – The regular use of both of now lead me to the dentist. In pain – but with a new appreciation of Aleve, and the short term mild abuse of it that made the weekend bearable-ish. The Dentist office asked me why I needed to come to the office after all this time away and what teeth exactly needed attention, upper or lower, right or left and I said “Yes”. I am going to have a great time and the Dentist is going to buy a new boat.

While I was in and out of pain this weekend, I mowed my lawn for the first time this season. The weeds have missed the memo detailing the near historic drought conditions we are living under and are doing very well. Ignorance is bliss. They are doing very, very well. What remains of my grass is dead but my weeds are lush and green and bountiful. As are oddly, the irisi in the back yard.



See? What a difference a little height limitation makes? Now it looks like a nice, green lawn instead of an ugly patchwork of dead grass and weeds. Also? I was the first on the street to bust out my lawn mower. I did this Saturday afternoon, by Sunday evening; half the yards on the street had been taken care of. And I was sneaky too. I used my super quite manual mower instead of my noisy automatic mower! So they were all surprised, usually the whine of the mower gives it away. HA.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I went to the The 2008 Raleigh St. Patrick's Day parade and now, so can you.

Sunday, March 16, 2008


Saturday, March 15, 2008


Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Cat Blogging

It's an Ashton Kutcher movie is the making

I have no butter in the house. Correction, I have no margarine in the house. This is kind of an issue. Do you know how many things are practically inedible without butter flavored topping? Damn near everything. And pretty much anything I have had any desire to eat since I noticed there wasn't any left in the refrigerator.

But do you know the only time you actually think about butter flavored topping? Right before you eat something that is only edible with butter flavored topping! You don't think about butter flavored topping when you are eating lunch right next door to a grocery, because your butter flavored topping needs have been attended to! There is no need for butter flavored topping then. It's when you go home and survey the interior of your refrigerator that you realize that you have no butter flavored topping and remember this could have been averted - There you were right next door to the grocery! And now? Where is the grocery? Not right next door! And who has time? There are reruns to watch, sneakers to find, pets to be fed and the next thing you know - It's too late to go to the grocery.

And now of course, you can't think of a single thing to prepare that doesn't need butter flavored topping either as an ingredient or a post-preparation additive. Try it. Run out of something and then try to think of one thing that does not utilize whatever it is. It doesn't matter that you ran out of sardines, the minute you notice BANG you can't think of a single recipe that does not include sardines.

I have perfectly good potatoes I can't eat because there is not butter, some lovely broccoli that really needs to get eaten this weekend and because I still have left over from last weekend, I won't have go to the farmers market this weekend and so local produce (I am assuming, I have no idea where it comes from) will go uneaten the farmer will be left penniless and will lose his farm! I only contribute about $4 a week to his economy, but every penny counts and, now, since I have no butter, I can't eat anything, I don't need to buy additional produce from him. He's going to lose his farm and I'm going to starve to death. It's the Butter affect. A Butterfly flicks his wings and starts a hurricane off Africa, I run out of butter and cause a family farm to fail and I starve to death. It's the truth, you read it on the Internet.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Success Stories

Yesterday Vice Chair, today Successful Changer of Fax Toner! Ya’ll don’t know! Our fax toner at work is a real bitch to change. It’s powdery. Shiver. And Yesterday, I changed it correctly and all by myself and all without messing up my light colored top or leaving tale tell toner flurries.

All the harder to do because while the machine said it was empty of toner, it wasn’t and there was quite a lot left in the toner well. But you can’t tell that until after you’ve taken the whole thing apart. I would love a fax machine that required cartridges, like our ageing printer . Sigh.

We aren’t going to get a new fax or a new printer because we just got a new scanner. Did we need a scanner? No, no we didn’t. Not at all. Do we need a new printer? We needed a new printer last year and the fax machine has been on it’s last leg for years. So instead we got a scanner, that we don’t need or want. Go us.

I think it’s a status thing for my boss. Upstairs they have a scanner, and they scan their little hearts out. Scan, scan, scan. Good for them. They even have a dedicated computer for the scanner so any staff that has something to be scanned can scan it. Super. Downstairs, guess whose desk the dedicated computer sits on? Not the bosses, no, she’s busy, she doesn’t need to be interrupted. I however, am never busy and live for interruptions. And even better? The scanner is big and takes up a lot of room. Guess who has a lot of room sitting around idle? That wouldn’t be me but it’s not like I needed that room anyway. I can sort the sections mail on my floor or I could just wiggle my nose and have the mail open, stamp and sort itself in the air.

Yesterday I also thought to put gas in my car at Sam’s. I really didn’t need to but it was only $3.10 a gallon and I thought I should jump on it. I “jumped on” $3.10 a gallon gas! How perverse is that? Almost as perverse as the $3.27 the pirates are asking for the same thing.

Earlier in the week, I came home from work and was going through my mail and ran across a greeting card from AT&T. What could they possibly need to thank me for, their customer? A rate hike? An apology for being Bushco collaborators the admins ongoing war against it’s own citizens? Nah! They want to thank me for being a valued customer. Which I’m not, not really. I never signed on with them. One day I checked my voice mail and the message the usual message that greeted me had changed. I was pissed. I’m pretty sure the last guys were also mentioned pretty prominently in the list of collaborators, but at least they weren’t AT&T for Gawds sake!

It was just strange to get a thank you note from collaborationist pigs. Thank you for letting us listen in to your phone calls, Thank you for laying there like a good dog while we trampled your rights, Thank you for not showing up on a list of customers forming a class action suit against us . Yet. I haven’t sued them yet, they could have saved their postage. They can’t save their souls, they could have at least saved their postage.

To change the subject, am I the only one who didn’t care in the least that The Wire ended? To change the subject again, these two headlines were together on my ISPs home page

Spitzer Resigns in Disgrace Over Scandal
US Syphilis Up for Seventh Straight Year

I laughed.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Big Time

I would have started this earlier but I was out participating in our democracy, or as it is more commonly known: Attending my yearly precinct meeting.

The news this year, for the first time in years is that we reached quorum!! Woo! We had a total of 10 people show up! Last year we had a grand total of three and the year before we had two. You only need five and we had ten! Not counting the dead people on the rolls, we have about twelve hundred registered voters in the precinct and ten of us showed up. Y'all don’t know. It’s very exciting, and unlike last year, our precinct chair even showed up.

It’s amazing we had that many show up because we had conflicting information about where our meeting was going to be. We got a very official postcard from the county party telling us one place and time and Monday night we got a rushed call from our out-going precinct chair with a different place and time. It’s a wonder any one showed up at all. I mean, really. It doesn’t take much to give people and excuse to not show up to these things. Making them guess where they are supposed to be is a great way to make sure they go nowhere at all.

And the party doesn’t help. I got my post card because I got a postcard last year. I asked a woman at work if she got hers and she had no idea what I was talking about. We asked tonight how they go about deciding who gets a notice and who doesn't and the answer was “If you're active in the precinct, you get a notice”, which begged the question, how would I know about the meetings if I didn’t go to the meetings, which is how being "active" in the precinct is defined. The party doesn’t send them to everyone because it costs them too much. I think it costs them too much not to. The county party sends notices out to donors and others that are active in the party. But what about everyone else? Every year there are fewer and fewer, the rolls are full of dead people and everyone moans about a lack of new blood - How is the new blood supposed to find out? Lucky guess? They follow the blue star in the sky until it leads them to their meeting? They just show up at a random suburban high school one Tuesday night?

The people who know get notified, the people who don’t know will continue to not know because the party doesn’t notify them and the rolls fill up with in-the-know dead people and all the new people stay home and watch the Mississippi results come in and wonder what they can do locally and how they can get involved and the local party isn't going to tell them. Morons. The grass roots turn gray and the party tells themselves it lends gravitas.

Oh, by the way. I am my precincts brand new vice chair! Our new chair is a great guy who was the chair before our current chair got too important to be our chair. I’m very excited, I really think he’s going to do more for the precinct, and I’ll do more because I’m the vice chair of my precinct! Woo-Hoo! And I am a delegate again! Yay me! Let’s hear it for the County Convention! And the District Convention! And the State Convention! But not the big scary National Convention in Denver because that is going to be a blood bath.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

More than voting

Have you ever been watching TV and watched one of those ads for The Amazing Fill-In-The-Blank? Of course you have. You don’t just see these ads once, you see it fifteen times during the Law and Order marathon you got sucked into and then, after freeing yourself from Dick Wolfs' clutches, you see the ad four more times during House Hunters and by time number twenty rolls around during Myth Busters you start thinking You know what? I think I need that, and the only reason you haven’t all ready ordered that is because you can’t remember if the number is 800-DUMMIES or 866-CHEAT ME and by the time you do write the number down, if the madness has gotten that far, You have most likely had time to think whether anything really amazing can be had for three payments of $19.99.

Well. Be glad you are too lazy to go find your phone and credit card! That laziness has prevented you from getting involved in all make and model of deception and fraud. And to make yourself feel even better about your sloth, there is a site dedicated to the complaints of the people who did buy those things, Infomercials

Were you almost lured in by the powdery promises of Bare Minerals? Good thing it was almost, how about Hercules Hooks?, the only thing that will get “held up” is you. And it goes on and on. You want to hear the truth about those promises of instawealth? Wealth Infomercials, shockingly the guy in the money suit lies!, House Hold Goods, again with the shock, Direct Buy is a scam and on and on.

Bottom line, if it sounds too good to be true? It is! Try to stay strong and remember Billy Mays is not your real friend. Have I ever ordered any thing off the TV? Yes, yes I have, many moons ago I bought an Xfiles shirt and hat from the Home Shopping Network. I have also bought those stupid things you see offered on you credit card bill. I have lusted after Space Bags! Do I own any Space Bags? No! Will I ever order a $4.95 laser level from VISA again? No!

Live and learn.

Onto other things that annoy me. On Saturday I finally got a notice about my yearly mass precinct meeting. Fine. I wish it would have arrived say, more than three days ahead of time but it’s not like I have anything else to do and I am such a geek, even if I did have something else scheduled, I would have to reschedule it, after all what’s more important that participating in our democracy?

Tonight, I received a call from the prodigal Precinct Captain! The Invisible Man! The man I thought had made it clear he wasn’t actually interested in being our chair because he had bigger fish to fry in more important places and had in fact, had been voted out of the position. Guess again! He called to remind me about a precinct meeting and he didn’t mention the mass meeting at the high school that we got post cards about - My precinct has a really hard time getting people to any meeting not held at our rec center. We are very sad. And Lazy. “We” being defined as those who are not me. I have perfect attendance. And also, I have a selfish need for poor turn out, the more people who show up for the meetings mean less of chance of me getting to be a delegate to the various state conventions and this year the big state convention is being held in the city where my parents live and I would actually go . Last year it was too far away and I missed it. This is an election year, there are no local politics. I think that’s why the Prodigal Precinct Chair came back. Off years just aren’t sexy enough for him.

Oh! And speaking of sexy, did you see the Democratic Governor of New York is part of a prostitution ring! How shocking, A polition being caught having sex with a woman!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Mouse in the House

I’m not sure if you can tell from just looking at this but, a minute ago I wanted to move my mouse from point A to point B and my mouse moved from point A to point B! On the first try! and I didn’t have to curse at it or slam it on the desk or spin it around or take it apart or wash any part of it or change what I wanted to do because the damn mouse wouldn’t go where I wanted it to... I was enslaved by a broken piece of $6 plastic.

I had tantrums and I kept saying I need to get another one. But, to get another one, I would have to have time to go get another one and I would have to remember that I needed a new one when I wasn’t in the middle of a tantrum. It’s not easy. I alos spent a few days without a car and that put a dent into my mouse shopping but pretty much, if I wasn’t actually in the middle of a mouse induced tantrum it was easy to forget about.

I would think of it when I would go to work and my mouse there works so well and it does what I wanted it to and it would highlight text and cut and paste and I would think about my one at home and be sad. I would have gotten a new one last weekend but that was not possible, and to be honest, I didn’t think about checking airport gift shops for computer mice.

So. This weekend I did something about it. I didn’t do anything about it on Saturday because it was too windy. It was really windy. Like a wind tunnel, all day. It was awful. Dogger wouldn’t even go out to pee! She would listen at the window and hear the gusts of wind and then poke her little nose out the door and just shake her head. We took a lot of naps. Which worked out well for me as I had decided I was going to sleep as long as I could on Saturday - and then I woke up at 8am, I was not happy about that. But fortunately, I overcame that early disappointment and managed to find a lot of time to nap. The constant strong wind was really very restful - I have a new roof, I can sleep in the face of strong winds.

I did manage to wake myself up long enough to go to Poverty Barn to get a couple of baskets for the book shelves that I use as a dresser. I need a couple of more to really tidy up the look, but the one’s I liked were $12 a pop and I had been hoping to spend $8 per basket - And I could have but the $8 version just looked cheap. So I settled for lesser amount of tidy and fewer baskets but what I got does make the book shelves look less like I’m using them as a dresser and more like I’m using them as book shelves.

While I was upstairs putting my stuff into the baskets, this enormous gust of wind came and knocked over my neighbors heavy, iron porch furniture and stripped shingles off the house behind them. I don’t know what made them more upset, having to go out in the wind to reset their furniture or having to pick up all the stray shingles from their yard and driveway.

Whee! I just highlighted some text and cut and pasted it and the mouse did it on the first try!

Tangent - Dogger barks at car crashes! We were sitting here checking Email and we heard someone hit the breaks and then the impact and Dogger barked at it. Don’t drive a plastic car, it isn’t going to end well - Those fake bumpers don’t dent, they shatter.

Sunday, March 9, 2008


Saturday, March 8, 2008


Friday, March 7, 2008

Friday Cat Blogging

Child's play

Product reviews

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I bought this for Iron Traveler Alphagal because I thought it was cute...
Chicken Soup

It’s Memes Day! I don’t feel well,the mouse hates me, I don’t feel like thinking too much or spending too much time sitting upright so this was a good solution. Enjoy. Cough, ack, sniff The return of the The Friday Five

1. How often do you get sick with a cold? The flu? Something else?
I don’t get sick. I have 616 hours of accrued sick time at work.I am saving it up so I when I am hit by a truck or my the tree behind me falls on my house, I won’t have to worry about running out of sick time before I’m out traction. If I don’t get hit by a truck and the tree falls away from my house, I plan on sitting on my thousands of hours of accrued sick leave and then one day going home sick and never coming back. I have missed only one day due to illness in seven years and that wasn’t a whole day , it was a half day. I left at noon on a Friday after I called my doctors office and begged for a script for Theraflu. I went to my pharmacy picked it up and went home. Dogger was a puppy then and thought I had made this surprise trip home in the middle of the day to play with her. She decided it would be big fun to slip out of her collar and force me to chase her in and out of the neighbors yards and up and down their drive ways.. When I finally caught her I brought her inside and pretty much literally threw her into her crate and slammed the door. I took my Theraflu and by that evening I was feeling much better and I even let Dogger out of her crate. Theraflu is magic.

2. Are you the sort of person who goes to work or school no matter how sick you are or are you willing to stay at home when it gets bad?

When I was in college I had a head cold for five years.It started out as an elective and became my major. I spent my junior year in the infirmary trying to convince them that I was not just really stressed or pregnant and that non-stop non-productive coughing is not usually a symptom of either. And then my one ear stopped working and I had a new retainer so I couldn’t hear you, my speech was slurred and I coughed all the time. I was going to die from my head cold. I almost drowned in my Dramatic Theory and Analysis class one day. I was so pathetic the guy who say across from me gave me a handful of tissue. Do you have any idea how pathetic you have to be before a college boy will hand you Kleenex?

And then one day, I coughed so much I broke a rib. I went to the infirmary to tell them I was now in pain from all this coughing and the “doctor” looked at my chart and said “Yeah. You’ve been in here a lot for that. It happens”. He never even examined me. I went home for spring break and saw a real doctor and he found it right away. With a stethoscope. I never went back to the school infirmary. It turned out I had something called cedar fever and I was living in a cedar grove. I graduated and left San Marcos and haven’t been that sick since.

3. How do you like to treat a cold? What remedies do you like and why?

If I ignore it long enough it will go away. This year I went out and bought myself the nicest Kleenex I could find at the dollar store and a bottle of hand sanitizer. .Within minutes my nose stopped running and I started to cough less.

4. What do you do to keep from getting sick in the winter?

I don’t get sick. I get allergies . So much like your cold so much less contagious. I spend the winter with special winter allergies.

5. What is your favorite thing to do when you stay home from work or school?

I don’t know. Daytime television has changed a lot in the five years since I last was sick at home. When I’m sick I sleep. A lot.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

"For the ladies"

I swear to Gawd. Now, if I was going to blow your damn head off, I wouldn't use no toy-looking pink ass gun. Shit.

stolen from Jesus General
I'm going to go get some real Kleenex at lunch. This pretend stuff I stole am using now, just no-pun-intended, sucks. I'm going to get some of the fancy, padded, antibacterial tissues. My nose hurts! and I feel like a walking germ.
I got “the cold”. I feel so trendy. I feel like head is full of water and my nose has a steady leak. And sneezing? I forgot about sneezing. I must have blocked the experience because I can’t see how I would have otherwise managed to put the function out of my head - Everything is now trying to get out of my head., I know this because I stole a roll of toilet paper from the bathroom and it is almost gone.

The housekeeping ladies come to my office in little paper bunny suits – its’ not just me, my whole hall sounds like a TB ward, a ward of non-compliant TB patients. Yuck.

I got “the cold” from Tiny E. She and her cute little baby germs. Sweet, lovey, chubby little baby germs! So cute! See, a full grown person had a nasty cold there would be no way you would allow them anywhere near you. You would just politely tell them if they needed you that they know you email address and that you would prefer for any communication to be handled that way for the time being or they could call you or text! They could text you instead of infecting you.

You see the baby. You are drawn to the baby. You want to eat that baby up!. The baby's mother warns you not to eat her baby because her baby has a cold and you say to the baby Do you have a cold? Does babywaby have a cold? Cough for me, cough, cough! and the baby dutiful coughs in your face and you say That is the cutest cough ever! The baby goes cough, cough! Look at the baby go cough, cough! amd then the baby sneezes on you and you say to the baby's Mother OMG! that was so sweet! Does the baby have your sneeze or Daddys? Whose sneeze does she have? - Because you know, sneeze style is inherited like a big nose or too small ears.

And a few days later you wake up and want to die. Baby germs are the strongest germs per square inch of any germ. Look it up. If an adult blew a snot bubble in your face you would, you know, glove up and kill them. If a baby blows a snot bubble in your face, you would , you know, laugh and applaud, and then maybe , if there was some handy, maybe use some antibacterial hand wash. On your hands. Feet from the actual snot bubble.

If a grown up coughs two inches from your nose, they had better be allergic to your perfume because if they are infected with something and they cough in your airspace like that, it is permissible to throw them from the roof, it is , you can. It was passed during the SARS hysteria: If you have flu like symptoms and you cough in public without covering your mouth – You can be executed . Any anyone can do it, it’s like a citizens arrest. You have some sort of upper respiratory infection and you cough in my airspace as defined by individual municipalities, in NYC if you cough on the subway and fail to take precautions? Bernie Getz, I kid you not. If you cough on someone in Idaho? The affected individuals can plow you under. Really, in Vermont? The going rate for spreading “the cold” is being buried in a snow drift.

But a baby?, No one is going to get mad at a baby!. it doesn’t matter that they produce some of the most densely packed germs on earth, and due to the fact that most babies today are born with colds – Go to a Day Care and find one child without a cold. Try to find one. They all have colds. And it’s the same cold, they all have the same cold! They give it to each other, then their parents get it and their school age siblings get it and they pass it to their teachers who pass it to their husband who gives it to you when you press the elevator button after him.

It’s a control thing. They can’t talk, they can’t read and they don't drive but they have germs and they know how to use them.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Bloggety, blog, blog. blog

While The Kitty was “in hell”, or as the rest of us referred to it "The Vet", he had a lot of time to update his blog.

The rest of us saw his stay there as “free time” he saw as “hard time”. We saw it as “being boarded” he saw it as “being held hostage”. It’s a matter of perspective.

Anyway, while he was being well cared for in a safe and friendly environment, he had the chance to revisit his blog, mostly because he claims to have taken a vow of silence until “Something something frees the garbled or there is peace unintelligible” but the vow is only in effect between three and four in the afternoon and every other Saturday after nine in the morning if the month has an R in it. It’s very Byzantine, his vow and it runs twenty-six hand written pages.

At some point The Kitty’s blog got tagged by another Kitty blogger. The Kitty was not real impressed by this and ignored it for over a month because he hates memes, but as he didn’t have anything else to do over the weekend he accepted the challenge.

Here are the seven random/interesting facts about myself:

1. I believe that what happens between a feline and his lovey should remain in the bedroom or the living room or under the dining room table where it belongs.

2. I am not actually fat, I was born with too much skin. It causes an optical allusion that is suggestive of extra weight but really isn’t. 17.5 pounds is not fat, it is 8.5 pounds of extra skin on top of my actual weight, which is only 9 pounds. I am actually quite lithe when you know what you are looking at – which is not a fat cat, it is a cat with extra skin. I don’t need your judgment, I need a handicapped parking sticker.

3. I do not hate everyone in the world.

4. I get pleasure from both reading and writing poetry , Ode to a Dead Waterbug and My Lovey, My Light… are two that I am very proud of . I have also dabbled in composing classical music with my Symphony in Q and The Catbert Variations. I also enjoy long walks along the back of the couch.

5. I do not judge other cats by the color of their fur, rather by the length of their tails.

6. I hate Velcro.

7. I have sniffed the dog and not hated what I smelled.

Geek Attack! Today is 3/5/8 3+5=8 !!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Did you know that in Pennsylvania, March, is a winter month? I mean, it’s not as though March is a summer month here, but our daffodils are up and smiling! The daffs I saw there, were wearing tiny little hats and gloves and looking really, really annoyed - They were all on their tiny cell phones calling their little travel agents and asking for big refunds. Daffs are not snow bunnies, they’re more of a sit on the deck and work on the tans kind of flowers. The only coolness they are interested in is ice tea and the new spring styles.

And then I came home. It wasn’t actually warm but it was so much warmer than I had been experiencing it felt balmy in comparison. Yes, a balmy 52 degrees.

I got off the plane saying I can’t pick Dogger up until five. I am going to take a nap.After spending a couple of hours putting stuff away and doing laundry I said I can’t pick up Dogger until five, I am going to take a nap and then putting away the laundry and going through mail I was saying I have a bit of time left, I am going to take a nap .

The few hours I was at home prior to getting Dogger were the longest period of time I had spent petless in a long time. No dog, no cat... I have to admit, I did party a little bit. I went outside because I wanted to! and didn’t close the door behind me! And while I was inside, I moved the baby gate out of the door way and into the hallway where it wouldn’t be in the way and I left food unguarded out on the counter top! instead of quickly taking what I wanted and then putting it back out of sight and later on when I was comfortable on the chair watching TV and I didn’t want to get up, I didn’t.

But I got lonely. There was no one to steal my food or shred my utility bill. Nobody needed to be pilled or taken out again to pee. No one needed the blinds opened or their toy rescued from under the chair . My nest was empty and I wanted my baby birds back.

Doggers pick up time was supposed to be 5pm, but I made the drive over at a quarter after four just in case the traffic was bad. I wasn’t the only one, another dog person went and banged on the door at 4:30 and they let us in . The boarding place gave me report and said she was really good and did fine with the stress of boarding. They even gave me a note from the vet saying she had been examined and was just fine. She did so well being boarded! - although the precautionary pred she was taking didn’t hurt anything either. They said what a sweet girl she was and how well she had done and then they brought her out and she did her best to leap into my arms. It’s good to be loved.

And on the way home I said I am still going to take a nap. We got home and I puttered around and Dogger frolicked with her toys and then I decided that since The Kitty wasn’t home yet that I was going to reward Dogger for being so good over the weekend: I was going to let her sleep upstairs in my room on my bed, with me.

Dogger sleeps in her bed in her room by herself. We don’t bunk together. It’s a little bit because she’s very big and very Doggy and a whole lot because that’s The Kitty’s space and we don’t want The Kitty to kill us in our sleep. I am only allowed to sleep there because he knows I pay the mortgage and he would prefer to not have to work outside the home.

So, in preparation, I gave a Dogger a nice bath and I covered the bed spread with a blanket and all the while I was saying I’m going to bed early, but I still had to launder her bedding and her wet bath towels and I still hadn’t eaten dinner.

And then I finally made it to bed., at my regular time, I took Dogger upstairs and told her to get on the bed and then I turned off the light and settled back in my own bed with my own dog and twenty minutes later my own dog decided that she also wanted to be on her own bed but she would stay upstairs because she was happy to see me and she can’t operate a door knob unaided.

I woke up Monday morning and it felt a whole lot like it should have been Wednesday.