Thursday, November 28, 2013

Have a happy, happy Thanksgiving.

I was gonna do a post all about the things I am thankful for, but meh.  Everybody's doing that.  So here.  Have some adorable kittens:

These are all former fosters of mine.  All of these guys were at one time homeless, looking for a place to call their own.

If you ever take a look around and think maybe your life is kind of blah, maybe a little ... empty ...

Or if you feel really blessed, and think maybe it's time you gave a little back ...Become a foster parent.

Your life will be fuller than you can even believe.

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


So, I was at the dentist the other day for my six-month cleaning and some x-rays, and Look Ma!  No cavities!

While I was there I asked her to write me another prescription for Flexeril for my jaw pain.  I have TMJD, and while it is much, much better than it was ten years ago, it still flares up occasionally, and I've found that if I take a Flexeril before bed when my jaw first starts to act up, I can usually nip the episode in the bud.

What is Flexeril?  It's a muscle relaxer, often used by sufferers of back pain.  It helps my jaw unclench before things get all wound up and I'm in awful pain.  So every six months, my dentist writes me a prescription for a whopping ten Flexeril pills, which get me through to the next appointment, usually with a couple of pills to spare.

And as I found out the other day at the dentist's, Flexeril is now on the list of prescribed medications that get very careful scrutiny from the Feds.  My dentist now has to fill out extra paperwork and send it along to the pharmacy with my prescription, evidently so that my medical records can be flagged in case I ever decide to GO WILD with the Flexeril or doctor-shop or whatever else it is that addicts do.

And you know what?  I don't like being made to feel like an addict or a criminal just because I'm in pain and am seeking relief.  I'm not doing anything wrong, or anything illegal, and yet my records are getting flagged because I'm taking a ... muscle relaxer.

I dunno.  It just doesn't seem right, somehow. 

If I'm gonna get flagged on a watch list, it should at least be for some GOOD drugs, dammit.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Most ridiculous use of flannel

I was at Jo-Ann Fabrics the other night, picking up materials for the catnip toys I make for the rescue.  And as usual, when I got to the cutting table to have the fabric measured, the nice lady with the scissors asked me, "So!  What are you making?"

And I gave my standard answer of, "Well, I volunteer for an animal rescue, and I make catnip toys to sell at adoption events ... " and as usual, I started to redden up and kind of rub at my face as I realized how lame I sounded, like, this is what my life has become, an old lady making freaking catnip toys, and I vowed then and there that the next time I go to the fabric store and the nice lady chirps, "So!  What are you making?", I'll have a more ... interesting answer.

Something along the lines of, "bondage blindfolds".  Or, "a blanket for my time-travel machine.  It gets cold at night."

Whaddaya think, guys?  Let's toss some ideas around.

Friday, November 22, 2013

I'm not sure, but I think Fall may be their favorite time of year

How many cats in this picture?:

How about this one?:

They do love the leaves.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

"Pretend like you're swimmin'! Stroke, stroke, breathe, stroke, stroke, breathe ..."

Okay, I just accidentally stumbled on a show called Key & Peele,  on Comedy Central, and all I can say is, watch it.

You WILL laugh until you cry.  And/or scare the cats.

Thoughts on Doctor Sleep

First off, okay, I'm gonna talk about Doctor Sleep, and that INCLUDES the ending, so if you haven't read the book and plan on doing so, stop reading this RIGHT NOW.

Okay.  Doctor Sleep by Stephen King.  First thought, reading Stephen King books is kind of like listening to ZZ Top songs - they're all pretty much the same.  Some are more epic than others, some run to a thousand pages instead of five or six hundred, but still, pretty much the same.

That said, I enjoy his books at lot.  He really is a good writer, and unlike with a lot of books I read, I don't think I've ever winced over an awkward turn of phrase while reading one of his.  He makes it look effortless, which I am sure it is not, even for him. 

What I enjoy most about King is the plot setup and the character development.  Once the story gets to the last few chapters, where it's good vs. evil and good wins and at least a few of the bad guys meet horrible, grisly, graphic deaths (King is very fond of splattered brains, and intestines are always good, as well), I kind of lose interest.  Because you know the good guys are gonna win (with maybe a minor good character or two killed off just to keep it real), the bad guys are gonna lose, and Amen.

And there is ALWAYS a big showdown. The shootout at the O.K. Corral, so to speak.  Even in a book like Doctor Sleep, where everybody's psychic and technically they could have just phoned the whole thing in, the good guys have to do a road trip halfway across the damn country just so everybody can meet-and-greet in person.

One other thing that stuck with me is how Dan pulled the dude out of his mental lockbox so he could kill the gal in the shed.  It was a deus ex machina, like Indiana Jones pulling the gun out of his belt and shooting the saber-wielding bad guy dead.  I mean, it was cute, but I was kinda like, "Whoa ... THAT'S convenient".

But then again, if you can keep people locked in boxes in your mind ... the whole premise is just fantasy, of course.  The True Knot doesn't really exist, although it WOULD explain some of those spooky old f*cks I see in Walmart.

Final thoughts?  I liked it.  I like most King books.  It only took me a week or so to tear through Doctor Sleep, even thought it's right around five hundred pages, because he really does know how to write a page-turner.  It's just, I never seem to get a chance to go revisit his older stuff that I REALLY liked, like The Stand and Carrie and The Long Walk, because he churns out the new stuff so fast.  Which isn't a bad thing, really.

I tell you what, Mr. King.  You keep writin' em and I'll keep readin' em.  How's that?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Meet the neighbor

Yeah, that's B., the crazy f*ck who lives next door.  On Sunday, he was out wandering the neighborhood in the rain.  (I don't know what he's got in his hand; his diary, maybe.  Before the sh*t hit the fan last week,  his wife told me that he's now writing down every. single. thing. that he does, every day.)  I kind of half-hoped he'd wander over to the creek and drown, which just goes to show how upset this whole fiasco has made me.   I'm seriously considering a fence at this point.  I have had it with ol' crazy-a**.

Isn't it terrible that instead of feeling sorry for this obviously disturbed man, instead I feel anger?   I just ... I have no compassion for him.  None.  I just want him to stay the f*ck away from me.  That's awful, I know it.  It's just ... he refuses to take his meds, he refuses to stop drinking, he kept drinking and DRIVING until a judge finally pulled his license, then he barged into MY house last week to spew his crazy all over MY place, and it's just ...gah.  Just ... go get help, dude.  YOU NEED IT.

And in proof that crazy does not, in fact, skip generations, his son was over at B.'s house last night, mowing the lawn.  On the riding mower, with no headlight, in the dark.  Mowing.  For over an hour.

Did I mention it was dark out?  And that it's November, meaning that no mowing needs to be done?  AND IT WAS DARK OUT?

I want my old, quiet neighborhood back.  That's all.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Back in the saddle again

Wanna be irresistible?

Provide kittens and stand back.

We had a bunch of teenager cats on Saturday, and also three, nine-week-old kittens.  People lose their SH*T when they see teeny-tiny kittens.   One weeny went home with his new parents on Saturday, and the rescue leader is trying to decide between several good applications for the other two. 

The response was really incredible - we had people waiting for us when we got to the store, and we were busy all day long.  We'll be going back for two dates next month. 

Man, I have missed this.  It felt good to be back at it again.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Let's change the subject, shall we?

The other morning, I woke up to a herd of deer grazing in my front yard, about ten feet away from the house.  When I rapped on a window, they just looked up quizzically, like, "derrrrrrr?", and went back to grazing.  This morning, there were deer SLEEPING in my backyard.  What does my place look like, some kind of damn hobo camp for deer? 

On the other hand, hunting (gun) season starts tomorrow.  I predict less deer grazing in my yard very shortly.

Hunting season also means I need to stay out of the woods for a few weeks.  Oh, sure. blaze orange is fine, but those dipsh*ts who come up from Jersey will shoot anything that moves, no matter what color it is.  Cows, look out.

Last night I made cookies for an adoption event coming up tomorrow.  I'm really not a baker, but I remember making snickerdoodles as a teen (and I remember my mom being furious because I was making them for the high school band director, whom she was convinced I had an inappropriate crush on, which I totally did, only going to prove that teenage girls are the stupidest creatures on the planet), so I pulled up a recipe on line, dusted off the decade-old containers of flour and cream of tartar and shortening, which, what is that stuff even MADE of, (and I had to go buy more because while the flour and cream of tartar seemed to be just fine, the ten-year-old shortening was decidedly less so) and baked some cookies.

And I pulled them out of the oven, and let them cool a little, and then took a bite, said "meh", and proceeded to eat a HALF-FREAKING-DOZEN, what the hell?

But yeah, adoption event this Saturday!  This will be the first one I've done since I got sick back in May.  Dammit, intestines, you can't hold me down!  Okay, that sounded kind of gross.

Anybody got any big weekend plans?


Last night, I pulled in the driveway, got the car in the garage, went in the house, and started closing all of the curtains.  If they ring the doorbell, I thought, I'm just gonna ignore it.

Yeah.  Good times.

And I got to thinking, you know, I like to think that if a neighbor was truly in need, if a neighbor was frightened, or hungry, or needed a ride to a doctor's appointment and came to me for help, I would help them and be glad to do it.

But these two?  One of these guys could come over to my house ON FIRE at this point and I'd turn away.

And that, I guess, is the problem when you constantly stir up drama in your life.  When you constantly manufacture crises just to get the old adrenaline pumping, at some point, the crisis is going to be real.  And everybody you run to for help is going to shrug and keep walking.

Then again, these two have made it into their SEVENTIES without learning that particular lesson, so who knows?  All I know is that if they knock, I'm not answering.

Let's hope for a peaceful weekend, shall we?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

How to break up with the neighbors

Okay, so, yeah, B. comes barging over last night, and at first he just wanted to plop himself on my couch and b*tch about L., but then he started not making any sense, and he started ORDERING me to look up phone numbers for him so he could dial his buddies, and I'm all, like, "Dude, you do NOT order me around.  I WILL tell you to leave," and so then he took my landline phone and threw it on the FLOOR when he couldn't dial a number right

and it was then that I told him I had to go check on my laundry and I grabbed my cell and ducked into the garage and called 911, which, holy sh*t, is there anything worse than having to call 911?

and yeah, you guys can probably tell that I'm still a little worked up over this whole clustermess.

So the cops come, and by this time B. had gone outside so he could have a smoke (thank GOD), and they talked to B. and L., and L. left to go stay at her son's house, and B. agreed to stay home and not cause any more trouble (HA), and I DID find out that they yanked B.'s driver's license on Monday, which is a good, good thing because driving drunk is NOT FUNNY and

and now I have to figure out how to break up with my neighbors.

"It's not you, it's me"?

Okay, no, no, that's complete bullsh*t.

"It's not me, it's you"?

Much closer.

How about, "I have had it with your crazy*ss antics, and I am TIRED of listening to the two of you b*tch about each other, and obviously you've had this kind of dynamic going for the last, oh, FIFTY F*CKING YEARS or so, but LEAVE ME OUT OF IT!"

Yeah, I think that might do it.

Christ on a cracker, why did I have to end up living next to these people?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Holy Mary Mother of F*CK

Dudes.  Duuuuuudes.  I just had to call the COPS on my neighbor B.

I am TOO OLD for this crap.

Why not just shoot 'em up with crank and be done with it?

I was watching The Biggest Loser last night in the foster room, as I often do, at least until they get to the weigh-in part, because that part is ridiculously drawn out and boring.

So I was reading my book while they were doing the weigh-in, and then I heard something about a disqualification and I looked up to see Jillian Michaels with that smirky, constipated look on her face.  Turns out she's been feeding her team caffeine pills, i.e., legal speed.

From an article on Huffpost about the episode:

"When Jillian was asked if she had anything to say, she defended her decision. "I stand by my opinion. A caffeine supplement is significantly healthier than unlimited amounts of coffee. My only regret is that my team, they are the ones suffering the consequences of my professional opinion.""

 Oh, man, I KNEW those trainers had to be juicing the contestants.  There is NO WAY you can lose the amount of weight in the amount of time portrayed on that show unless you are doping.  The only surprise is that it was just caffeine pills; I'm surprised those guys aren't  handed bottles of Benzedrine and cartons of meth-laced smokes when they show up at the "ranch".

And this is what's wrong with The Biggest Loser:  It is giving millions of overweight people the false hope that they can lose a sh*t-ton of weight in a very short amount of time, if they just work out enough and stop overeating.  IT'S NOT POSSIBLE.

I actually kind of liked that "Extreme Makeover:  Fatass Edition" show, or whatever it was called, because it did show a more realistic portrayal of weight loss:  It takes TIME.  Weeks, months, years.  TIME.

And I'll bet you that all the MLMers who are pushing Xying and all those other crackpot drugs were standing up and CHEERING in their living rooms last night, in anticipation of all the sales they'll have to desperate overweight people who just heard Jillian Michaels say, on national TV, that it's okay to take potentially dangerous supplements to help you lose weight.

Jillian, Jillian, Jillian.  What were you THINKING?

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

It was like "Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle", except without the weed

So I'm at  work yesterday afternoon,  cleaning up my desk because it's almost quitting time,  when the phone rings,  and the Caller ID says it's my neighbor,  L.

Please forgive me,  but my first thought was, "What NOW?"

But!  L. just wanted to take me out to dinner, because I'd done her and her husband B. some favors lately.

Awwww.  How nice.

Except, as I was to learn, I'd have to drive, because, as it turned out, B. had taken their car to do a little bar hopping, so L. was all pissed off and wanted to teach him a lesson by being out when he finally wandered home and

these people are in their SEVENTIES.  What. the. f*ck.

So we started for dinner, me driving, except L., after asking me where I'd like to eat, turned down the places I suggested because they don't serve alcohol and L. wanted a drink with dinner (oh, honey, maybe learn a lesson from the hubs, here) and the first other place didn't have enough cars in the parking lot, never a good  sign, and the second other place was packed, and then L. remembered that she had to stop at an ATM, and right after THAT her phone rang and it was her son who reported that B., her husband, was at a local Legion and had lost his keys and could I give her a ride back home to pick up the spare keys and then take her to go pick up B. at the Legion, twenty miles away, and

you know what?

I used to live with an alcoholic.  I've DONE my time in enabler land.  I have PAID my flipping dues.

Yes, I took her to the Legion, because I did not want that old f*ck of a husband of hers to drive drunk and possibly kill someone on the way home.  I will tell you what,  I don't know why, but for whatever reason, drunks would rather slit their wrists then call a damn cab. It's like admitting that hello, I have a problem here, and that is ONE thing that a drunk will not admit.  So I took her to the Legion.   NO, I did not go inside.  I told her that what went on between her and B. was their business, and I was not going to get in the middle, and that she should leave with the car (she had not been drinking before I picked her up, so I knew she was good to drive) and tell B. he'd have to call a cab whether he liked it or not if he refused to come along. 

I just ... you know, I'm all for helping neighbors, you know?  And it wasn't like I had any big plans for last night, so dinner with L. sounded good to me, except for the clusterf*ck it turned into. And when I got home,  I discovered that she had tucked a twenty into the car console, evidently for gas money.  But this whole thing just makes me uncomfortable.  I am NOT going to start being drunk B.'s car service, and I am NOT gonna get swept up into alcohol drama. And I never did get any damn dinner. And why can't I have normal neighbors?!


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Remember Petey?

Petey, the cat who tried to kill me?

I have often wondered about Petey over the past six months.  Through the puncture wounds, and the nerve damage, and the c-diff, and the ensuing intestinal disasters, I kept thinking about Petey.  Wondering how he was doing and hoping that he'd come out of his shell in his new home.  Hoping that the whole ordeal wasn't some terrible, useless mistake.

Well.  I got a notification on Facebook the other day, from the woman who ran the now-defunct rescue that took in Petey:

 "this is especially for you. I saw Petey's owner today.    Petey is doing amazing. He is Heidi's best buddy and follows her everywhere. He is the most loving cat, and now has a new playmate (a retriever). They are still getting used to each other. He promises to send pictures soon. They love him dearly. He said to tell all of us THANK YOU! Rocky, they hope you have recovered from your ordeal. It took a while to break him, but he said it was worth the wait. Thank you all for your hard work and dedication."

Man oh man, I SWEAR it was all worth it.

Because  I'm crazy.

Friday, November 08, 2013

That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Entitlement, that is.  As in, "entitlement society".

Oh, the tea-partiers and the Republicans are fond of throwing it around, of reminding us just how many Americans are deadbeat losers who would rather slit their wrists than go out and work for a living.

But when *I* think of "entitlement", I think of Rich David.

Rich David, a Republican and business owner,  just won the mayoral election in the city in which I work.

Rich David was caught out several times violating campaign laws during the course of the campaign.  Each time it was pointed out to him, he shrugged, called it an "oversight", and coughed up the fines.

A couple of weeks ago, Rich David illegally parked his Caddy outside his place of business IN A HANDICAPPED SPOT (actually, in TWO handicapped spots - he straddled the line) and left it there overnight.  I don't know if anybody called him out on it or not, but if they had, I'm sure he would have shrugged, paid the fine, and gone on his merry way.

THAT, to me, is the epitome of "entitlement".  A rich white guy who decides that laws are for the little people.  A rich white guy who, when caught breaking the rules, just shrugs and pays the fines, because who cares?  Rules don't apply to people like him, after all.

Did I mention that he won the election?

Okay, one more example.  My boss, who is a fair employer and an intelligent person, is also rich and white and Republican.  I had to run some errands on my lunch break the other day, and when I pulled back into the office parking lot, I noticed my boss pulling the ashtray out of his car, walking it over to one of the recycle bins, and dumping it in.  For the record, if he had gone another fifteen feet, he could have dumped it into an office garbage can.

Oh, man, I could NOT keep quiet.  When he came back into the office, I said, "Just so you know, cigarette butts are not recyclable."

"What," he said, straight-faced.

"I SAW you dump your ashtray into the recycle bin," I said, laughing, because I would like to keep my job, and laughter is a leveler. 

"That wasn't a garbage can?," he asked, still straight-faced.

"Oh, come ON.  Bright yellow, with the recycling logo on the side?  No, boss.  That's not a garbage can."

"Hmpf," he said.  "Oh."  And he continued on his way.

No, to me, "entitlement" is not some lazyass welfare mom spitting out kids so her benefits will go up, so that maybe she'll get a princely five hundred bucks a month in food stamps instead of four.  "Entitlement" is people breaking campaign laws and parking illegally and dumping their shitty cigarette butts into a recycling bin.  Because the rules are for the downtrodden and the little people, not for the ones who rule.

And that's all I'm gonna say about that.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Do you know Joey Williams and Gwen English?

Do you?

Do you know Joey Williams and Gwen English?

Facebook has been sending me an email, almost every day, for the last few YEARS, asking me if I know Joey Williams and Gwen English.

Oh, every once in a while, they'll mix it up and throw a few other names at me, but most of the time, it's good ol' Joey and Gwen.

Do YOU know Joey Williams and Gwen English?

Because I sure don't.

And at this point, a couple of years down the damn road, I kind of wish Facebook would stop asking.



Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Nitrites and leukocytes and blood, oh my!

Yep, it's a bouncing baby bladder infection.

What  the F*CK, you guys?  I hit fifty last year, and all of a sudden my intestines went to sh*t.  Is this common?  Is this  what I have to look forward to?  A lifetime of colonoscopies (upcoming on the twentieth, thankyouverymuch), and antibiotics, and  flipping  PEEING IN CUPS?!

Old age, so far I am not a fan.

So I have to go pick up my prescription for bladder-specific antibiotics this morning, and I have to call the doctor on Wednesday to find out what exact blend of bacteria is cooking in my bladder, and oh!

on my lunch break today, I get to go try to gender-determine a litter of kittens, which ... okay, I'll give it my best shot, but man oh man nothing is guaranteed.

Is anything guaranteed right now? Sometimes I wonder.

Bah humbug.

Monday, November 04, 2013

A master of military strategy, living right next door

On Saturday morning, I was outside taking down the giant halloween bats, when I saw my neighbor B. heading out to his mailbox.

"Rocky!", he called.  "I've got a secret!  I'm comin' over."

Oh boy, I thought.  What now?

He shuffled his way over, still in his bathrobe, although without the cigar and giant glass of scotch that usually accompany him, probably because it WAS only ten-thirty.

"Guess what I did on Halloween?," he said.  "I tricked the whole neighborhood!  Oh, I got you guys GOOD!"


"You did?," I asked.  "What did you do?"

And then he went into this long story about taking dishwashing liquid and something else which I can't remember and making fake blood and getting someone to write notes and smear the blood all over the neighbor's CARS and

"Waaaaaait a minute," I said.  "That ... baggie?  In front of my garage? That was YOU?"

The day after Halloween, when I left for work,  I noticed a little zip-lock baggie with what looked like liquefied coffee grounds in it on my driveway.  I really didn't think much of it, just picked it up and put it in the trash, thinking maybe it was some weird Halloween kid thing.  Little did I know, it was my pushing-eighty NEIGHBOR.

"It was ME!," he chuckled.  "I got you, and J. next to me, and ooooooh, there was blood all OVER that Corvette across the street!  It washes right off, you know!"

And now I'm thinking that this guy is lucky he's still breathing, if he or whoever wrote the notes for him was going around marking up people's cars.  Hahahaha that's not funny.

And THEN he goes into this big long story about going to see Captain Phillips and he's telling me the whole story line, so now I guess I don't have to bother to get it on Netflix, and he's telling me about how he STOOD UP in the theater and told the people on the screen how they're doing it wrong because everybody KNOWS that when you call in a naval military strike you need air support and

I'll bet he's a real scream to go to the movies with.

He then proceeded to give me a blow-by-blow on Gravity, so now I guess I don't want to rent that one EITHER.


I think the dude needs a hobby or something.  Or something.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Because pissing blood can't possibly be a good sign

Ladies. And gents.   I have a question.

I'm pretty sure I've got a urinary tract infection (my first one ever ... yaaaaay!)

From what Dr. Google is telling me, the standard treatment is antibiotics.

But ... antibiotics give me c-diff.

Houston, we have a problem.

I've been chugging cranberry juice all day and upped the probiotics and even bought some cranberry extract capsules, which are probably snake oil but hell, any port in a storm.

Anybody got any other suggestions?  I'm at a bit of a loss, here.