Wednesday, October 31, 2012

They're heeeeeeere ....

Best costumes so far?  Thing 1 and Thing 2.  Followed closely by a really well-done mummy.

Almost all of the costumes so far have been homemade, which is awesome. 

And of all the different kinds of candy I've been passing out (I bought several "variety" bags), the Whoppers get an almost visceral reaction.  As in, "Ewwwww!  Can I have something else?"  Ha. Props for honesty, kiddos.

I finally picked them all out of the bowl.  Evidently Whoppers are a Halloween candy faux pas.

Happy Halloween!

Waiting for the trick-or-treaters:

Happy Halloween!

The Haunting

In honor of Halloween, here is my true haunted house story:

I grew up in a haunted house in upstate New York. My family moved into the house in 1963 when I was 10 months old. They bought the house from the original owners, who had built the house a few years before, so the house wasn’t very old. It was a two story house built on a sloping lot, so the finished basement was partially below ground. There was a storage room in the basement that was maybe 10’ x 15’; there was something very, very wrong about that room. When you walked in there, the hair would stand up on the back of your neck. None of us ever actually saw a “ghost”, and frankly I don't really believe in ghosts,  but there was a bad, bad vibe in that basement.  Something was there.

There was a bedroom next to the storage room that was traditionally the bedroom of the oldest sibling in the house at the time. (In a family of six kids, having your own room was a huge privilege!) Staying in that bedroom could be a scary experience. Sometimes I would be in that bedroom and just have the strongest feeling that I had to get out right that second; the worst part was, you had to pass the door of the storage room to get from the bedroom into the main part of the basement and up the stairs to the main living area. We always kept the door to the storage room closed, but it would often be open when someone would walk by.

Lots of times I would leave my stereo on a particular radio station before I went to bed; when I got up in the morning, the radio would be on a totally different station at the other end of the dial. The living room was upstairs and there was a "rec room" in the basement, and many, many nights we would be sitting in the living room watching TV while we listened to the furniture re-arranging itself downstairs. The floor downstairs was linoleum and the furniture was wooden “camp-style”, so it would make a very distinctive sound scraping across that floor. But when we would go down to check, the furniture would always be where it was supposed to be. Other times the downstairs stereo would come blasting on in the middle of the night; as soon as you got to the top of the basement stairs, it would stop. If we were in the basement, we could hear people walking around upstairs, even when no one was up there.

After I grew up and moved out, I would house-sit for my parents when they went out of town; I always stayed upstairs and made sure the door to the basement was shut and locked; when I would get up in the morning, that door would be standing wide open. That happened a lot and almost gave me a heart attack every time.

It wasn’t just our family who experienced this; in-laws and friends were privy to these experiences as well.

It has been over twenty years since I lived there, and I still have nightmares about it. Especially the door to the storage room.

Happy Halloween!  Got any good scary stories?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It was a big nuthin'

So!  We got some rain, and some wind, but no major damage here.  Thankfully.

And the cats were very, very glad to be let outside this morning.  Although they were a little leery of the six-point buck grazing in the backyard.

Things look pretty bad down in Jersey this morning - Becs, ~~Silk, and everybody else, I hope you're okay.

Monday, October 29, 2012

How's everybody doing?

So far, so good, here.  It's started raining, just a little bit, and the wind has picked up, just a little bit.  Evidently the worst of it is going to be tonight (WHY DO THESE THINGS ALWAYS COME AT NIGHT?), but as long as things stay as currently predicted, the cats and I will be okay.

and all day long, "Sandy" from Grease has been running through my head.  Except, I can only remember one line of it, so

"Oh Sandy BAY-AY-BEEEEEE, SO-UM-DAY, when HI-EYE-SCHOOL is through ..."

is on repeat.  Charming.

And I CANNOT decide whether to pull the car into the garage tonight or not.  For some reason, I keep having this vision of pulling the car in, and then, like, a tree limb comes down across the garage door, and then I need to leave but I can't get the garage door open to get the car out ... Gah. 

They (yes, "they". the infamous "they") are closing the roads at four, so hopefully I'll be able to skeet out of work early in order to go home, flip on the TV,  and compulsively watch the local weather forecast, over and over and over.  Fun!

Good luck, everybody.  See you tomorrow.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Work sucked, and so I bought a horse on my lunch break

Thursday night, I stopped by the thrift store after work.  There was a child's ride-on horse there, one of those big plastic ones on metal springs.  The kind they don't make any more because kids either fall off and give themselves concussions (raises hand), or get their fingers caught in the springs.

Years ago, I bought one and turned it into Mr. Z.  And then I bought a smaller one, Mini-Z, who has remained a horse.  And when I saw that one at the thrift store Thursday night, a pinto no less, I almost bought it.  But it was twenty bucks, and I wasn't sure, and

and then I got to work yesterday and work sucked.  Extremely busy, which is not terrible in and of itself, but my boss and one of my co-workers were screaming at each other, and I was tired because Tinks had been out all night the night before, and I was worrying about the FRANKENBURGERMEISTER STORM that is going to KILL US ALL, and I kept thinking of that horse in the thrift store, and how awesome he would look all cleaned up, and

I bought the horse on my lunch break.  Meet Blaze.

(No, I did not name him.  I NEVER GET TO NAME ANYTHING.) (His name  is printed on his saddle.)

This afternoon I washed him up and put a coat of varnish on him and I'm pretty sure he's going in my side garden.  COME ON OVER TO MY PLACE, GUYS.  IT'S AWESOME.

Other things I did today:

Painted some faded pink flamingos blue.  Because obviously.

Raked some leaves.

Can you spot the cat in that pic?  Hint:  Look for the ringtail.

Duct-taped back together the seat belt latch I had managed to hulk-smash the night before.  Sadly, the duct tape did not magically fix the smashed-beyond-repair latch, so add that to the list of things-I-will-spend-money-on-never.  Hey, it's in the back seat.  Nobody sits back there anyway.

Went for a nice long walk.  I was doing one of the tougher trails, and was pretty impressed with myself, until I saw a woman doing the exact same trail while walking a spastic pug and drinking a cup of coffee.  Now THAT's  impressive.

Ran into my ex-husband's sister.  Seeing as how I haven't seen any of his family since I left him, over twenty years ago, THAT was awkward.  And I'd just done a four-mile walk, so I wasn't exactly looking glamtastic, but then again, I'm pretty sure I STILL looked better than I did by the time  I walked out of that marriage, so there's that.

Started some laundry.

And  now it's time for a beer.  Join me,  would ya?

Friday, October 26, 2012

Oh, screw you, Sandy.

So there's this hurricane down in the Caribbean right now, Sandy (YOU MIGHT HAVE HEARD OF IT), which is supposed to head up the East Coast and become a FRANKENSTORM and a STORM OF THE CENTURY and THE PERFECT STORM and WE'RE ALL DOING TO DIE and

holy sh*t bugger off.

I am SO TIRED of getting all worked up thanks to blanket media coverage of "weather events" that, half the time, turn out to be nothing at all.

But, I mean, it's impossible for me to be totally nonchalant when terms like "blizzardcane" (hahaha I AM NOT EVEN KIDDING YOU) start getting tossed around, because (a) I'm only human, and (b) I live in a flood zone.

yes, yes, I knew the damn house was in a flood zone when I bought it.  But because of various and tawdry reasons, I needed a place to live RIGHT AWAY, and so I bit the bullet, bought the flood insurance, and purchased the house.

And I love my house.  I do.  And it has never ever flooded, not even in 2006, when historic flooding hit this area, and not last year, when we got over ten inches of rain in two days.

My house has always stayed dry.  But you can understand why a little frisson of fear goes up my back when I start hearing meteorologists LOSE THEIR EVER-LOVING SH*T over a storm that is probably not even going to happen. And then I have to KEEP hearing about it for DAYS AND DAYS AND DAYS, until the damn thing finally sputters out to sea and I can breathe again.

Hit the road, Sandy.  And don't let the door hit you in the butt on the way out.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

They'd cut a girl for a piece of chicken

Last night, I brought home a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store for dinner. 

As soon as I got in the door and the smell from that chicken started wafting through the house, the cats were on me like flies on sh*t.

My cats looooooooove chicken.

I actually hesitated to even buy the damn chicken, because I knew what was going to happen.  Buy chicken, bring it home, have cats lose their ever-lovin' minds.

But *I* like chicken, too, and I was damned if I was going to deny myself over a little cat fuss.  Because the LAST thing I want to do is end up like some of those people from My Cat From Hell, who have to, like, barricade themselves in their bedrooms if they want to sleep at night because they're afraid of what their cat might do to them.  (Have you SEEN that episode where the couple had to take running leaps into their bed at night to keep little Fluffy from eviscerating them?  I would PUNT that cat, is all I'm saying.)

So!  Bring home chicken, cats lose their minds, time to cut up the chicken.  With three cats variously climbing onto the kitchen counters ("HEY!  GET DOWN FROM THERE!"), climbing up the cabinets ("DAMMIT!  I SAID GET DOWN!" *swat*) and ululating like tribesmen ("Meeooooooooowww Yeeeowwwwwww Wowowowowwowwwwwwwww").

LOOK.  I GAVE THEM SOME OF THE CHICKEN, OKAY?  It's like a finely timed dance, with me parceling out little bits of chicken to the cats in order to buy myself enough time to get the damn thing cut up, wrapped up, and in the fridge.  While saving aside some pieces for Wanders the foster, of course, who is currently residing in the spare bedroom so that she can't beat my three boys up, which is a whole nother story right there.  Turns out, "She was being bullied in her other foster home", which is what I was TOLD, was ACTUALLY, "She tries to beat the sh*t out of any cat who comes anywhere near her", which, ha, live and learn.

And then there's that last mad dash at the end, where I have to buy off the cats with some last chicken pieces so I can get the chicken bones out back to the trash without the three yowling, chicken-crazed banshees following me out to the garbage can, where they would surely gladly shiv me to get to the last bits of meat.

Chicken.  It's what's for dinner!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Illegals

My boss and I are on different ends of the political spectrum.  I try to stay away from political discussions with him; we're never going to agree.

But when he started going off on "the illegals" the other day, I had to speak up.

"The goddam illegals are the problem!," he said.  "They're sucking us dry!  Did you know that illegals can collect social security?"

"Um, no, actually, they can't," I said.

"Oh yes they can!  They can collect social security, and they can get driver's licenses, and they can vote! And you know damn well they're all gonna vote for Obama!," he said.

Okay, time to start googling.  Because I don't claim to know it all.  And unlike my boss, who believes everything his Tea Party nutjob friends tell him, I prefer to get the facts before I start talking.

Web searches done, I handed him a sheaf of papers.  "Here you go," I said.  "They can't collect social security, they can't get driver's licenses, at least in most states, and they can't vote."

"Well, they just do it ILLEGALLY," he said.

I was prepared for that.  One of the sites I visited had mentioned it.  "There were fourteen cases of  undocumented persons voting, in the past several years.  FOURTEEN.  Out of how many millions of votes cast?  And you're worried about fourteen cases?"

Well, no,  of course he's not worried about fourteen cases.  He's worried because Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh keep telling him that "the illegals" are the one of the reasons his entire rich-white-man entitlement is swirling around on its way down the drain, and he's frightened.

But you know what?  From now on, every time he starts spouting this ridiculous bullshit that Fox News feeds him,  I'm going to fight back with facts.

And you know why?  Because that privileged white man made more than five times what I did last year.  Which is fine.  He worked for it.  But you know what's not fine?  I  paid more in taxes than he did. 

And that's not right.  And to hear him bitching about the f*cking  "illegals" being the source of the country's woes?  Makes  me sick.  Because HE'S the problem.  Him and his tax cuts and his screw-the-poor attitude and his absolute willingness to fund unnecessary wars to prop up the military-industrial machine, because his rich buddies all run factories that supply the armed forces.  HE's the problem.

And I'm going to learn some things in the process.  When the boss spouted off about illegals collecting social security, well, I was pretty sure that they couldn't, but I wasn't 100% sure.  So I did a little research, and five minutes later, I knew.  For sure.

Ain't facts glorious things?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Whaddaya do when the meds run out?

Ponyboy, my orange cat, is on eyedrops.  Special eyedrops.  Eyedrops that cost sixty bucks for a teeny-tiny bottle.

I know that I've gone on about the eyedrops before,  and on and ON.  I just can't get past the fantastic COST of the eyedrops.  Although I try not to b*tch too much, because while the drops don't cure his runny eye, they are the only thing that seems to help at all, even if it is only marginally.

But it looks like I'm not gonna have to worry about spending that money anymore.

The compounding pharmacy that makes Pony's extra-special, super-duper eyedrops has informed me that there is a shortage.  A shortage of the ingredients to make the extra-special eyedrops.

No eyedrops for you!

Oh sh*t.

You see, Pony contracted feline herpes as a kitten. Herpes that he would not have gotten if he had been vaccinated.  But because he grew up in a crazy-trailer-hoarder-lady's home, he did not get vaccinated.  And his herpes infection received no treatment at all until he came into rescue care, at a year old.

And the result is a chronically runny eye.  We have tried medication after medication, for months.  And the only thing that helps, at all, is the super-duper eyedrops.  Which are no longer available. When I called the vet and told her, she was, like, "Oh, CRAP!  There's nothing else out there.   There's nothing else."

Anybody got a line on some black-market Cidofovir?  We could use some, over here.

Monday, October 22, 2012


If I was ever to get a tattoo, other than the teeny heart I already have on my shoulder, I'd want one like the woman who runs the shop on American Pickers has. It's like an elaborate, intricate bib necklace. Very cool.

But unless and until they develop a better way of removing old tattoos, I will not be getting any new ones.  I'd erase that teeny heart if I could.  So I guess I should probably stay away from the bib necklace thing.

The only time I listen to much commercial radio is when NPR is having a pledge drive.  I'm not proud of that.

There seems to be a niche in the blogosphere:  Upper-class white women garnering massive amounts of sympathy (and fame) (and money) for less-than-fatal problems. You would think that having a severe anxiety disorder and going out on a book tour would be mutually exclusive, but evidently not.

Truck nuts are not funny.  And I get the feeling that the people who think truck nuts are funny are the same people who would be disgusted by a woman who put a fake vagina on her trailer hitch.

Every October, the thrift stores fill up with people looking for Halloween costumes.  Folks, contrary to popular belief, thrift stores are NOT full of zoot suits and flapper dresses.  They ARE, however, full of bad fashion circa 1990, so if you want to dress up as your aunt for Halloween, you're probably all set.

I am rapidly approaching my fiftieth birthday. Other people have said that as they near this milestone, they are inundated by enrollment mailings from the AARP. Me? Nada. Maybe the AARP doesn't want me. FINE! I wasn't gonna sign up anyway. I'm only fifty, not ninety, for Pete's sake.

How long is too long to wait for food in a diner?  Twenty minutes? Thirty?  I'm just curious ...

Friday, October 19, 2012

Freaky Friday!

This sign is out in my backyard, at the edge of the brush line.  Just, you know, so the deer know to yield to the cats.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Hmmm ... seems familiar ...

So, I got a bunch of magazines out of the library the other day, including the August issue of Esquire, because according to the cover, it had a story by Stephen King in it.

Well, okay, a story by Stephen King *and* Joe Hill, his son, but still.

And it turned out to be Part 2 of a short story, but whatever, and I started reading, and it's this story about people lost in a cornfield.  And they can't get out.  And there are other people in there who are threatening them ...

... wait a minute!  Where have I read this before?  A story about a cornfield, and scary people, and oh yeah, they made a movie out of it ... Children of the Corn!  That's it!  This story is, like, a total plagiarization of Children of the Corn!  I wonder if the person who wrote Children of the Corn knows about this!  Let's see ... let's google "who wrote Children of the Corn" ...

... Stephen King.  Stephen King is now plagiarizing himself.

I wonder why.  Is this going to be a new thing, now?  Instead of remaking movies, they're going to start remaking books?  Like, "Hell, that was a great story, thirty years ago!  Let's slap a new coat of paint on her and trot 'er out again!"  Or ... Well, I can't imagine that ol' Stephen did this for the money - I'm sure he has plenty - did he do it for his son, who is also an author? "Here, son, your writing career's been in a slump lately - take this old cornfield story of mine and rework it and hell, slap my name on it, too.  Nobody'll notice."

And let me just say right now, if you have a famous parent?  DO NOT GO INTO THE SAME CAREER FIELD.  Do you really want to spend your entire life being compared to your DAD?  No?  I didn't think so.

But back to the cornfield story, I just can't figure out why they did it.   Any ideas?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Best book review I've read in a while

Okay, so, I was flipping through a magazine this morning, and there was a full-page ad for James Patterson's "Zoo".  I've never read any Patterson, as I am not a fan of the detective/murder mystery genre, but "Zoo" looked kind of interesting.

I headed for Amazon to find out more about it, figuring I'd just avoid the reader reviews, as Amazon's readers would give the damn PHONE BOOK reviews like, "Riveting!" "Amazing!" and "I stayed up all night to finish it!"

So imagine my surprise when I did scroll down to the reader reviews, and this one was the first one up:

"318 of 334 people found the following review helpful

1.0 out of 5 stars Worst book I've read in years September 6, 2012

By Howard V. Tayler

Format:  Hardcover  "Zoo" is full of point-of-view errors, sloppy dialog, one-dimensional main characters, tell-don't-show, and artificially-induced pacing. There are a few neat action sequences, and the premise is fascinating, but the science is horrible, and the moral posturing is infuriating. Ecologists and "green" folks everywhere should bury all the remaindered copies of this book, because the best use it can serve for our ecology is as a carbon sink.

SPOILER ALERT: human-induced ecological collapse is a neat premise. The accidental generation of a pheromone that makes animals hate people is a bit of a stretch. The way in which these premises and plot-whoppers are worked into the story, however, is stupefyingly clumsy to the point of being insulting.

The publisher says "Zoo is the thriller he was born to write." That's a little bit like saying "this cardboard box is the mansion he was born to build," or "this steaming pile of excrement is the meal he was born to eat." My only consolation for having my intelligence insulted by Patterson is that Patterson's publisher has inadvertently insulted him with the glowing praise.


hahahahahahaha THANK YOU MR. TAYLER.  You've made my morning.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Charity president unhappy about Paul Ryan soup kitchen ‘photo op’

From The Washington Post:

The head of a northeast Ohio charity says that the Romney campaign last week “ramrodded their way” into the group’s Youngstown soup kitchen so that GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan could get his picture taken washing dishes in the dining hall.

Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vincent De Paul Society, said that he was not contacted by the Romney campaign ahead of the Saturday morning visit by Ryan, who stopped by the soup kitchen after a town hall at Youngstown State University.

“We’re a faith-based organization; we are apolitical because the majority of our funding is from private donations,” Antal said in a phone interview Monday afternoon. “It’s strictly in our bylaws not to do it. They showed up there, and they did not have permission. They got one of the volunteers to open up the doors.”

He added: “The photo-op they did wasn’t even accurate. He did nothing. He just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining hall.”

Ryan had stopped by the soup kitchen for about 15 minutes on his way to the airport after his Saturday morning town hall in Youngstown. By the time he arrived, the food had already been served, the patrons had left, and the hall had been cleaned.

Upon entering the soup kitchen, Ryan, his wife and three young children greeted and thanked several volunteers, then donned white aprons and offered to clean some dishes. Photographers snapped photos and TV cameras shot footage of Ryan and his family washing pots and pans that did not appear to be dirty.

- Courtesy: The Washington Post.

Just thought I'd put this out there.  Just in case anybody was still wondering if Romney/Ryan were complete douche canoes.  (Answer:  Yes.  Yes they are.)  F*cking rich a**hole Paul Ryan made soup kitchen volunteers stay late so he could get a photo op.  Jeezus Christ.

And here's how you tell if you're a Republican or a Democrat:

If you're a Republican, you hold on to what you've got and fight like hell to keep anybody else from getting any of it.  Your attitude:  Screw those lazy bastards.  F*ck 'em.  And the only thing soup kitchen volunteers are good for are photo ops.

If you're a Democrat, you hold on to what you've got, but you also believe that sometimes people need a hand up, and you don't mind spending some of what you've got to help them.  And you volunteer at the soup kitchen.

And there ya go.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Doggin' It

Yeah, I'm a little bit tired today.  Tinks decided to stay out until five o'clock this morning.  GAH.  Ever since the raccoon came in, I've been closing the pet door at night and keeping the cats inside.  Tinks has decided that he doesn't LIKE being inside all night, thankyouverymuch, and so while the other cats are inside by eight-thirty or so, Tinks has started staying out.  And out.  And OUT. 

And the LAST time he stayed out that late, he tangled with the neighborhood tom and came home the worse for wear, so when I woke up at quarter after four this morning and discovered that he was still out ... well, that was the end of the sleep for me.  And of COURSE, Tinks meandered back in at five, all, "What?  I was just out ... doing stuff!  Why were you worried?"

What the hell do cats DO outside at night, anyway?  I mean, other than hunt mice and yowl at each other.  Card games?  Pizza parties? 

Oh!  And in other cat news, Wanders the foster has decided that any cat coming anywhere near her at any time is cause for hissing and spitting and caterwauling.  I'd like to integrate her more into the household, but she's gotta learn that another cat LOOKING AT HER is not grounds for throwing a fit.  And it's so funny - My guys are all, like, "What's HER problem?  Jeeeez." 

My arms hurt today.  It was a shopping-induced injury.  I knew it was gonna happen.  I had to stand in line for forty-five minutes at the Thrifty Shopper on Saturday, with my arms full of clothes, and even though I kept trying to shift the weight from arm to arm ... yeah.  What's that?  Use a shopping cart, you say?  HA.  Shopping carts are rarer than hen's teeth at the Thrifty Shopper half-off sales.  I woulda had to beat up a gramma for one, and NO fantastic shopping deal is worth going to jail for.

and at this point you're all, like, TLDR TLDR TLDR! and guess what?  I'm gonna keep talking.

I did a shift at the adoption center Sunday.  It was almost my last one.

The gal who "runs" the adoption center is becoming increasingly disorganized.  There's all this drama going on over there, where supposedly that gal is going to break off from the main group and start her OWN rescue group and blahblahblah cat people drama I don't care, but things are all haphazard at the center.  (Note:  The rescue group that runs this center is NOT the one that I volunteer and foster for.  NOT the one I was pimping on the radio. All I do for this group is the occasional adoption-center stint.)  On Sunday, there was one cage with three young kittens in it.  Except their cage card (that identifies the animals, gives their names and adoption fees, etc.) only listed two cats.  Hmmm.  And had no identifying info.  And listed that one of the cats had been adopted, but did not say which one.  Wheeeee!  I get to guess!  Jeezus Christ.  I was able to determine that one of the kittens was a boy, by looking, but the other two were indeterminate, and oh!  Those two were identical.  Identical black kittens.

So ... you can guess what happened.  Everybody wanted to visit with the kittens.  Everybody wanted to know if they were boys or girls.  Everybody wanted to know which one had already been adopted and which ones were still adoptable.  And I ... had nothin'.  Good times!

And I was in a sh*t mood when I got there anyway, because the vacuum cleaner went kerflooey that morning, and instead of taking it outside to take it apart, I did it right there on the living floor, thinking to myself, "You know this is gonna make a mess.  You really SHOULD take it outside ..."  but of course I didn't, and of course I ended up with a giant vacuum cleaner mess all over the floor, and I NEVER LISTEN.  To myself.

But!  In brighter news, I put up some halloween decorations, including the giant rats, and Soda ... Soda thought they were REAL.  I put them in the yard, and he came trotting across the grass, saw the rats, and STOPPED DEAD.  He was all, like, "WTF?  WTF IS THAT?"  And he kind of sidled across the yard, getting a little closer and then jumping back, until he was close enough to determine that our neighborhood had not, in fact, been taken over by giant mutant rats.  And then he gave me look that was all, "Ha ha, you almost got me, human lady.  I think there's something WRONG with you."

Hey, *I* thought it was funny.

Yes, I am aware that I sound like I'm on the third day of a really bad headcold

Here it is!  The moment no one has been waiting for!

Click here !

People, I cannot help the voice.  The only way to make it any better is through surgery, which, NO.  So go ahead and laugh at Ms. Minnie Mouse, there.

The things I do for homeless cats!  Sheesh.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

'cuz they said it really loud, they said it really loud ...


Did I listen to myself on the radio this afternoon?  YOU BET YOUR A** I DID.

And supposedly the radio station is going to post it on their website, and if so, I'll link to it here.  Just so you can laugh at my nasally voice.  Hey,  I'm a giver like that.

Bottom line?  I hope our rescue group gets some much-needed help from this.  That's what matters.

So!  While I was waiting to BE FAMOUS, I went to the fifty-percent-off sale at the Thrify Shopper.

And after the Thrifty Shopper, I figured I was on a roll, so I hit up the Label Shopper and picked up this little retro denim number, NEW WITH TAGS, for ... drumroll please ... $4.99.  Ha!

Grand total?  For BOTH STORES?  $28.17.

Damn,  I'm good.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Freaky Friday - Our Lady of the Really Big Dress

A while back, I picked up this Madonna in a thrift store.  She's made of metal, and she's a votive holder - you're supposed to put a candle behind her and let the light shine through her dress, which, personally, seemed kind of risque for a Madonna, so I don't light any candles up in her dress.

I like how the baby looks like a little larva:

They both seem pretty content, don't they?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Soda and the deer

Okay, first off, I used my new phone app to take these pics.  It's call "Blurrogram".

Seriously?  It was just barely dawn, and I didn't dare use a flash, and I was taking these pics through the screened kitchen window.  So sue me.

I had a whole HERD of deer in my backyard first thing the other morning.  Usually the cats and the deer just ignore each other, but on that particular morning?  Sodapop decided he was going to get him some venison.

Sodapop is to the left of the tree, at the base of the neighbor's shrub, and the deer is just to the right of the tree.  They've both got their ears pricked up and are investigating each other:

Sodapop moves in closer, looking behind him for brotherly reinforcements ("Dudes?  DUDES!  Get over here!"), as the deer ALSO moves in closer, hoping to get a sniff of this strange creature:

Right after this pic was snapped, both deer and cat decided that discretion was the better part of valor, and they headed off in different directions.  Whew!  It's bad enough when Soda brings MICE in the house ...

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

I'm gonna be a BIG STAR

So!  This morning was the interview at the radio station for the rescue group.  And it was ...

FUN.  It was FUN.

Being interviewed is MUCH EASIER than the nursing home talk that I did, where I basically had to go stand up in front of a bunch of strangers and talk.  It is a LOT easier to just sit in front of a mike and answer questions.  I wanna go do it agaaaaaaain ...

The show will be airing this Saturday.  I hope I remember to listen ...

Oh!  And in other news, I managed to bake a batch of cookies that actually tasted good.


My complete and utter lack of any basic baking skills is kind of legendary.  Now, COOKING, I can do.  I make a mean lasagna, and a good seafood newburg, and I can even do a decent steak, but BAKING?  As in ... dessert-type things?  Not so much.

Which is kind of tragic, considering my love of all things sugar-filled.

I discovered my lack of the cookie-baking gene when the rescue group started having bake sales.  Time after time I would volunteer to bake cookies or cupcakes, and time after time something would go sadly wrong in the kitchen, resulting in an inedible mess. 

For a while, I supported the bake sales by BUYING stuff.  But after biting into one too many cupcakes and finding a hair (human, cat, does it really MATTER?), I stopped doing that, too.  Now I just donate money.

But!  Back to the point! 

I volunteered to bring donuts this morning for the radio interview.  As a thank-you to the host.  But the more I thought about it, the more I thought it would look kind of ... bad ... to BUY donuts to bring to an interview where I am going to beg for help for my rescue group.  What if the interviewer was all, like, "If you need help so badly, how come you can afford to buy donuts?  WHY ISN'T THE DONUT MONEY GOING TO THE HOMELESS CATS?!!!"

yeah, I overthink this sh*t.

So, buying something was out of the question.  So last night I gritted my teeth and made a batch of chocolate chip cookies to take to the interview.  "I'll follow the recipe on the chocolate-chip bag!," I thought.  "How hard can it be?"

Answer:  Hard.

Oh, I mean, not hard, intellectually, just hard as in pain-in-the-ass.  You had to measure some things into ONE bowl, and some things into ANOTHER bowl, and beat in the eggs ONE AT A TIME, and


this is why I don't like to bake.

But!  Finally, the cookies were done, and I ate a bite of one, tentatively, and it was GOOD.  It was a GOOD COOKIE.

whew.  At least now I know that if I am ever forced at gunpoint, I can produce an edible cookie.  Or at least I did it ONCE.

And supposedly this radio interview is also going to be a podcast on the radio station's website, so if I ever figure out what a podcast is and how to link to it, I'll put it up here so you guys can laugh at my Minnie Mouse voice.  Promise.

And! Scroll down.  I'm still looking for new blogs to read ...

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

What Blogland has taught me

1. People will sell out for an amazingly small amount of money and/or fame.

2. There are a lot of drama queens out there. A LOT.

3. See also: Hypochondriacs.  Holy macaroni.

4. People are often not what they seem.

5. There are an awful lot of bloggers who think they can write a book. Well, sure, they can write it, but will it be any good? Results vary, here.

6.  There are entire sites dedicated to ripping apart other sites.  (Yes, I KNOW I did a post about Dooce's divorce.  It was ONE POST, people, not an entire website.)  So be aware that whatever you put out there, someone may mock it or laugh at it or tear into it.  Publicly.  It's all fair game in blogland.  (See:  My Dooce post, which is STILL getting vicious comments. *sigh*)

7.  There are some amazingly talented bloggers out there.  People whose blogs put my little blog to shame.  Does that mean I'm gonna stop writing?  HELL NO.

How about you?  Anything you've learned in the mighty Land of Blog?  Oh!  And I could use a little help, here.  I'm always looking for new stuff to read, so if you know of a really great blog, including your own, feel free to pimp it in the comments.  A favorite recent find of mine is Simian Idiot.  How about you - Are you reading (or writing) any good stuff?  Enquiring minds want to know.

Monday, October 08, 2012

The Mighty Hunter

Wha ... what's that in his MOUTH, you ask?

It's a mole.

Evidently my backyard is chock-full of easy-to-catch prey.  Last week it was bird-on-bird action.  Today let's talk about Soda and the moles.

Sodapop LOVES to hunt. He does it all the time. And brings me the spoils.

Um ... thanks?

My neighbors love Soda, because he is methodically eradicating the moles that inhabit our adjoining backyards.

Soda hunts mice, too. Lots of mice. Although lately the take has been slowing; evidently, natural selection is at play and he's caught all the dipshits. Now he's gotta move up in the ranks, where the game gets tougher.

And even though he hunts, he doesn't eat anything he catches.

That's what Tinks is there for.

It's like a tag team. A while back, Soda had brought a mouse into the kitchen and was playing with it. Tinks waited until he was distracted, then grabbed the mouse and headed for the living room, where he started to chow down.

Not on the rug, Tinks!

I grabbed the mouse and put it out in the garage, figuring I'd take care of the remains in the morning. Hey, it was late and I was tired, and out of sight, out of mind, right?

The next morning, I got up, fed the cats, took a shower, blahblahblah and headed for the garage, figuring I'd take care of the mouse. Except Tinks was already out there, finishing what he started. I guess he thought I saved it as a snack for him or something.

Leftovers are always better the second day.


Oh!  And in further Tinks news, I made an ill-advised attempt to pick him up on Sunday morning.  "Hey, Tinks!  Come'ere, sweetie!"  HA.  Sweetie my a**.  He swatted at me and knocked my glasses clean off my face, breaking them in the process.

I call him Wrecking Ball.

How about you?  Have your pets broken anything expensive?

Friday, October 05, 2012

Freaky Friday - Avian Edition

So!  Last night, I got home from work, and I was just kind of puttering around, when all of a sudden there was an uproar in backyard, which was kind of odd because the cats (the usual backyard troublemakers) were inside.  I looked out, and a bunch of crows were pitching a fit., cawing and swooping and circling around.  Usually that means there's an owl or a hawk in the vicinity, but this time I noticed a bird on the ground.  It wasn't an owl.  It was smaller than a hawk, smaller than the crows, even, and it had something in its talons.

Well.  The crows kept cawing and circling and swooping and pestering that bird until it launched off the ground and flew towards the woods with ... a full-grown cardinal in its talons.

"Holy sh*t!,"  I thought.  "Do birds really eat other birds?"  I mean, I knew that peregrine falcons would eat other birds, because the ones that nest downtown regularly feast on the fat city pigeons, but this bird was smaller than a peregrine falcon.

After much google searching, I think it was probably a sharp-shinned hawk.  They are in this area, and will kill and eat other birds.

I'm telling you, it's like flippin' Wild Kingdom around my place.  I'm half expecting Marlin Perkins and his sidekick Jim to show up with a camera crew.

And if that hawk comes through the pet door, I'm moving.

Thursday, October 04, 2012


Today it is gray and rainy.  It's warm out - well, in the sixties, at least - but by this weekend, temps are supposed to dip down into the thirties.   *shiver*

So I thought I'd take the opportunity, on this gray, rainy day, to (FINALLY) posts some pics I took of Ponyboy on a hot, sunny weekend afternoon this past July.  I had gotten up from the lounge chair (which was placed strategically next to the kiddie pool, of course) and gone into the house to grab something, and when I came back, Ponyboy had taken over.

Here we go:

Geez, lady, I'm trying to snooze, here!  Stop with the camera, already!

Straaaaaaaayyyyyytch (with extra polka-dot tummy cuteness):

Oh, the cute is just too much - look at his leetle tongue:

Let's think sunny thoughts today.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Did you know that you can return BATTERIES to the store?

hahahaha oh my God you guys it's true.

My wireless doorbell went kerflooie, and I assumed that the battery in the sending unit had gone bad.  And of course, of COURSE, when I opened up the unit, it wasn't, like, a double-A in there - it was one of those twee little batteries that go in, like, hearing aids and sh*t.  You know, the fantastically expensive kind.

So I sighed, and went to the drugstore, and paid SIX BUCKS for a battery the size of my THUMBNAIL, and took it home, and put it in the unit, and ...

... of course it wasn't the battery.  The doorbell still wouldn't work.

I got ready to toss the brand-new, never-used, twee little battery that will never fit in anything else I own EVER into the junk drawer, when I thought ...

... I wonder if I can take this back.  I mean, I never USED it.  It's still brand-NEW.  I wonder if I can return it.

And so I put it back in the little Duracell package, taped it up, grabbed the receipt, and put "return battery" on my to-do list.

And THEN, the next day, I'm talking to a co-worker, and somehow the whole doorbell thing came up, I don't know how, probably because I NEVER STOP TALKING, and I explained how I was gonna return the battery.

"You can't do that!" my co-worker said.

"Why not?"  I asked.

"Because!" he said.  "If you could do that, everybody would just go to the store and buy a jumbo pack of batteries, take it home, replace every battery in their house, put the used batteries in the package, and take it back to the store for a refund!"

And here is where I thought to myself, "That is the best idea EVER in the history of the WORLD.  That?  Is pure genius."  I mean, I couldn't DO it, of course, because with my luck, they'd just put my pack of used batteries back on the shelf, and some poor motherf*cker would buy the used batteries to put in, like, his HEART MONITOR or something, and then I'd rot in hell.

But I still think it's a genius idea. 

And!  I took my twee little (brandie-new) six-dollar battery back to the drugstore, all taped up in its packaging and with a receipt, and

they took it back.  They gave me my money back.

Holy sh*t you guys you can return batteries for a refund. 

You're welcome.

Just, um, think about the guy with the heart monitor, okay?  I'm just sayin'.

That's one way to weasel out of a dentist's appointment

Drumroll, please ...

I'm gonna be on the radio!


As part of my volunteer work with the rescue group, one of the things I've been trying to do is get out the word about our group.  So I've been contacting radio and TV stations, trying to get some air time.  And evidently, every other non-profit group in the area is doing the same thing, because no one's been getting back to me.

Until today.  The host of a local radio show has invited me to come and speak about the rescue group.

The show's taping will be next Wednesday, which, OF COURSE, just happened to be the day I had a dentist's appointment scheduled, so with GREAT RELUCTANCE (hahahahahahahaHA), I rescheduled the dentist's appointment.  To November.

Hey, ya gotta take your opportunities when they come along, am I right?

Oh sh*t.  Maybe I really AM a crazy cat lady.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Auuuuuuutumn in New York:


Someone planted pine trees in rows here a long, long time ago:

Beaver dam:


I love fall here.  Too bad it's followed by winter.