Sunday, November 25, 2018

Just Breathe

We had a fire up north a bit that made the air quality go from "Good" to "Moderate" to "Unhealthy for sensitive people" to "Unhealthy" to "Hazardous" over the space of about two days and then it sat there for a couple of weeks. Obviously it could be worse -- I didn't die and my house didn't burn down, so I figure I got off easy. But it does mean that the dogs didn't get walked or go to agility for a couple of weeks.

So this morning I took them for a nice long walk at a local park, and as I usually do when I remember, I took some pictures.

I'll spare you the one of my finger completely blocking the lens. (Besides I already posted it on Twitter and then deleted the original.) It looked like every other picture I've taken of my finger blocking the lens.

This one made me laugh:
Let's break it down a bit.

Ginger is looking happy (or maybe like she's staring straight into the sun, but at least she doesn't look like I'm about to beat her like she normally does when I start snapping pictures):
Then there's Georgie. He's staring at Ginger:
Same thing in the next picture:

Then he stared at me:

In any case, he's a handsome boy.

He's also still moping at home because I have denied him access to the kitchen. The two times when I've gone out briefly without leaving him a Kong stuffed with treats, I've come back home to find one of my new running shoes out in the hallway. Look at that last picture. Yes. I see the shoe thing as a threat too. Silly dog.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Full Janky

I know people, lots of people really, who live in houses that look like they are inhabited by adults. You know what I mean. There are matching, correctly-sized curtains on all the windows, the furniture looks like it was all purchased at the same time, professionally framed non-ugly things are hanging on the walls, all that stuff.

Somehow I missed the gene that controls that.

I have two large dog crates in the living room (one of which is there just to keep the extra paper towel rolls from the cats). The sliding glass door in the living room still doesn't have curtains. I finally bought a sofa recently, but every piece of furniture in the room is a different style, color, and state of decrepitude. I'd like to refer to my decorating style as "family cast-off modern", except it's not quite that good.

When I had my bathrooms redone, the designer was pretty much just constantly horrified by me.

The plus side of missing that gene is that I honestly don't notice that there's a problem. I lived without a couch for something like eight years because it was too much trouble to get a new one. Sure, the kitchen looks like it hasn't been upgraded since 1958 (because it hasn't), but the faucet is no longer shedding chunks of metal and threatening to come off in my hand. And it's just more efficient to store all your clean clothes on top of the drier.

Anyhow, some people would be bothered by not being able to find a baby gate that fit the second kitchen opening, but clearly I'm not that person. I mailed the company and asked what part I should order to get a 12" extension and they sent back info on the 4" and 6" extensions. Handy people would probably build something that fits in with the housing style. In brainstorming with a friend she asked if I wanted something nice, or just something kinda janky.

I went full janky.

Yes, that's a bookshelf turned sideways in the opening with a board pressed against it. It seems pretty sturdy and the big dog hasn't pushed it all over yet, so I'm calling it a success. I could lie and claim this is just temporary, but we all know this is going to stay like that until either the house burns down or I die here.

It doesn't even really look out of place.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

My Dog Only Eats Meat (Unless It's On the Counter. Or In the Trash)

So I recently switched to a different wet cat food because the cans were smaller and Crow was dying and not eating as much, and then she finished dying and wasn't eating anything, and now Guido is taking his own turn on the lymphoma merry-go-round and -- wait, the point of that sentence was to say that I switched brands and suddenly the cats were finishing everything on the plate. Sometimes I would open a second can and it would be gone, too.

Except... Yeah, it wasn't the cats. The big dog has discovered that he can get to everything on the counter. Also, if I'm not paying attention and forget to put up the barrier, everything in the trash. Somehow this took him two years. He's not really a sneaky dog in general, so I think he honestly doesn't get that he's not supposed to do these things even when I'm not in the house. I mean, it's not like he tries to hide it because he either takes things to his bed or onto the couch.

Anyhow, I think fully half of his calories in the last week have come from his scavenging. The list includes:
  • about two cups of safflower seeds (?)
  • (different day) a cup of small bird pellets (and he also broke the scoop, which is sort of irritating)
  • (different day) a tub of sour cream so old I couldn't remember what I bought it for
  • (multiple days) cat food
  • a bottle of dog skin supplements that came with him two years ago that I finally remembered to start giving again just to get rid of, so maybe 30 tablets? Luckily, there's nothing in there that would cause a problem.
I swear I haven't been starving him. Also, I don't understand how a dog that can't be bothered to lick all the Velveeta from the inside of a Kong has the patience to break open a thick plastic pill bottle. Luckily he has not gotten into Guido's steroids (and yes, I have moved them to a safer place).

So I could try to rig up something to keep him off the counter, but really the smart thing to do is just keep him out of the kitchen altogether.  The baby gates shipped two days ago.

Silly big dog.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

"How to Write Sex"

(This post started as a Slack conversation I was having with some friends and it made me laugh so much that I had to save it for posterity. My friend Hilary came up with the title, and she was completely making fun of me at the time, but after I wrote out the rules she changed her tune. Anyhow, now it's here for everyone to laugh at.)

"How to Write Sex" by Theresa Baumgartner

Step one: Uh, make them want to have sexy times. Somehow.

Step two: Have the sexy times. Or maybe not.

Step three: How can the sexy times have caused problems? Let me count the ways!

Step four: That wasn't good enough? Wait another quarter of the book and we'll revisit this idea.

If I can't sell my fiction I think I should totally sell a book on how to write a novel...

And because I have a feeling this title is going to generate some traffic from people who don't know me... Here, oh great Internet, have a picture of my cat Guido who is not long for this world (lymphoma) but is living his best life by napping and picking fights with everyone in the household in the meantime: