Tuesday

So.

We finally bought a bed. After much musing, research, waffling back and forth, and plopping down on beds in several stores, we settled on a Tempur-Pedic. You know, the one often seen in late night infomercials. The very expensive viso-elastic You Can’t Disturb Your Partner bed.

It was delivered yesterday, and all evening long I looked forward to going to bed for the first time in a very long time. My back kept whispering, “I finally get a break? Yes? We got me a new bed??? Yay!”

Before plunking down the money, I did a chitload of reading reviews on this bed; out of 27 billion, I only found a couple of Don’t-Buy-This reviews. So after lying down on one in the showroom, and feeling my body go “aaaaahhhhhhh,” I decided this was it. The Perfect Bed.

I slept like crap last night.
My back feels like someone beat me with a baseball bat.
I am very disappointed.

Now, granted, in many of those reviews was the advice that one needs to give this bed a week or two; it will be harder than normal at first, and needs to ‘learn’ to adapt to your body. So we’ll see. But the dozen or so times I woke up last night I had the mantra “we can take it back, we can take it back” running through my head.

I’ll give it a week or two, and won’t hesitate to send it back if it still sucks. Hurray for the 90 day trial period.

Still, I have high hopes.

So does my back.

In other news, Max has caught whatever Buddah had, and is going to the vet this afternoon because he seems to have it bad. Poor kitty.

Sunday

Dear So-And-So, Part Dos

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger,

You seem to be trying very hard to get your own way as far as running California goes. In fact, you’re pissing a whole lot of people off; I suppose that’s part of the job since you can’t make everyone happy. Honestly, I don’t think you’re doing a very good job, but you could do one little thing that would make me change my mind.

Since you seem to believe you can do anything, see what you can do about regulating the weather and temperature in Northern CA. Like today—today was a beautiful day! Sunny, 74 degrees tops (at least where I’m at), a very gentle breeze… I would like for every day to be pretty much just like this. It would make me, and many other CA voters, very very happy. And it would contribute to the economy, since I would be out driving around every day. I need gas for that, and the more gas I buy, the more money dripping into the other peoples' pockets, and then they have more to spend.

Heck, I’d be happy if it was like this 5 out of 7 days. Give the farmers the rain they need the other 2 days.

Oh, and quit picking on nurses and teachers. They’re about to get all Total Recall on your ass, and you really won’t like them when they all pissed off. Someday you may get sick and need nurses, and face it, you have kids still in need of teachers…

Sincerely,
Someone who didn’t vote for you, and probably won’t next time around, unless you pull this off.

Dear George Lucas,

You have an awesomely creative mind; the latest Star Wars movie is a visual buffet; the costuming is great, the special effects are awesome. The story line—all 6 movie tied neatly together—is nothing short of amazing.

But please, Mr. Lucas, hire someone else to write your dialogue. Someone who can make up his mind whether the dialect is modern or medieval, contemporary or formal. This mix of verbal genres is so jarring to the ear that it takes away from the overall impact of what could have been one of the greatest movies ever. Our greatest actors couldn’t overcome the dialogue they’d been given (well, not that I consider Hayden Christensen to be a great actor…but Samuel L. Jackson is pretty damned good, and even he couldn’t sound convincing.)

And come on… “You’re either with me…or you’re my enemy.”???

Great plot, sucky words.

Sincerely,
Not A SW Geek, But I Do Love A Good Movie.

Dear M&Ms People,

Please make the dark M&M a permanent thing. We love them, and no one can find them.

Sincerely,
Suffering From Major Withdrawal

Saturday

Today's Email, Shared With Permission

Hey Thumper,

You don't know me at all but I've lurked on your blog since almost the beginning. I found it sometime around when you were moving and had just had the brain tumor removed. You were telling the world about Max howling all the way from to Ohio.

When I read your post today it occured to me that I had thought about your dog just a few days ago. I didn't realize it had been two years already. And then I thought yes it had to be, because you posted about a new pain drug for dogs, Deramax, and we had an elderly dog who was having considerabe pain from arthritis. His vet mentioned Rimadyl but wouldn't prescribe it because of the side effects. But your blog post popped into my head and I asked him about the Deramax; he nodded and agreed it would be better than feeding him coated aspirin all the time or not giving him anything.

Anyway, Watcher our dog, has had 2 really good years now. Age is catching up with him but at least he's been able to take long walks and play with us. And if your mentioning that drug helped Watcher, you can be sure other people read it and it helped their dogs, too.

I loved reading about Hank and cried when he passed, but please know that his legacy is having helped at least one dog, and his owners are forever grateful.

Good luck with Max and the new kitty.
Drew Sabato


You don't know how touched I am that someone remembers Hank and those last weeks; and knowing that what he went through there in the end helped someone.

I'm going to go hug the PsychoKitty now, even though he hates that.
If you’ve been around my blog for a very long time, you might remember this guy. Hank. The impossibly sweet Golden Retriever.

I was watching Buddah tear up and down the hall, chasing Max, chasing his own tail, pouncing on anything that so much as twitched, and the thought crossed my mind that Hank would have loved Buddah. He would have laid there quietly, just watching, and he would have let Buddah climb all over him. When he was younger, Hank used to feed some kittens that were born under our house; we’d put his food out, and he’d wait until all 6 or 7 of them had their fill before he’d eat.

Trailing on that thought was today’s date. May 28. Hank died two years ago today.

I still miss him. Honestly, I don’t miss all the dog hair covering the furniture, I don’t miss all the doggy landmines in the back yard, but I do miss him and his goofy, always happy ways.

Obviously, we’re pet people. Looking back, we spent most of May 2003 totally focused on Hank and his declining health; I even cooked his meals, something I wasn’t even doing for us. Two-three years before that we spent a year focused sharply on Dusty, our cat, trying to keep her comfortable and happy through a major heart problem that eventually cost her her life.

And here we are now…focused on two furballs who may or may not learn to peacefully co-exist. I have high hopes; right now they’re napping just a few feet from each other, and earlier Max stole Buddah’s crunchy treat right out from under his nose. Buddah meows in a squeaky, not yet developed voice for Max to play, and Max is starting to swat at Buddah any time he gets too close for comfort.

Hank would have loved watching the commotion.

Friday



When I was a kid, we had a cat named Ataturk. She was territorial and fearless; if any of us girls had boys over, she would wedge herself between us and the guys on the sofa, keeping a glareful eye on the hairy little intruders. And once, when I was about 12, she got out of the house. We found her just a minute or two later—she was chasing a German Shepherd around the corner. That dog was running at full tilt, trying to get away from the maniacal flabby feline.

Now…picture tiny little Buddah, all one pound of him, as Ataturk, and Max as the German Shepherd.

We let Buddah out to roam the apartment today—first time—and he immediately sighted Max, and ran towards him. And Max, 15 pounds of big brave kitty, ran like a scared little girl. Down the hall, through the bedroom, back up the hall, through the kitchen…Buddah had Max running harder than he has since he was about 6 months old.

Max found a place to rest in the bedroom while Buddah continued to explore, he was very wary, flinching at every sound, his eyes black with widened pupils. And then we made the mistake: we plopped Buddah down onto the bed. He made a beeline for Max, and the chase began again. Buddah just wants to play; Max just wants to live. Right now he is truly terrified of that little black ball of fur zipping through the house at 100mph.

We were worried that Max would rip Buddah to shreds—he did attack the vet after all—but now we’re worried that Max will spend the rest of his life in terror of this little thing that all he needs to do is turn and hiss at the way he did the vet.

That’s all it would take. One good, authoritative hiss, maybe accompanied by the growl we now know he has.

We specifically got a young kitten to avoid dominance issues.

Hah. That’ll teach us to think…

Thursday

They Meet

Buddah's massive shots of snot out the nose have subsided, so we decided it was time...he and Max needed to come face to face.

Pictures to squeal over. Dialup warning: they're big.

As inspired by a thread at pamie.com’s forums
Dear So-And-So…

Dear Lady in Ralph’s grocery store:

Thank you for having the guts to stand up to your kid. For not putting up with a whiny temper tantrum, and sparing the rest of us from it. We could see the kid was tired. And he really wanted that candy bar (eh, so did I, to be honest.) And he was intent on letting the whole world know it. But unlike hundreds of other parents I’ve seen, you stuck to “no” and when he started his meltdown, you picked him up, apologized to the clerk for leaving your cart—which you said you’d be back for later—and left. The clerk didn’t mind and the rest of us are very grateful we didn’t have to be in line behind you listening to him shriek. Thumbs up.

Dear Lady in the Costco parking lot:

Look, I stop for pedestrians 99.9% of the time in parking lots,and I've never run one over. It’s hot outside; you want to get inside. I can turn my A/C on if I have to. And I’m never in so much of a hurry that I’ll cut off someone on foot just so I can get 50 feet further down the lot. But come on…at least look before you step out in front of my car. Don’t just assume I’m going to stop. What if I wasn’t paying attention? What if the sun hit my eyes wrong at the precise moment you stepped out in front if me and I didn’t see you? Yeah, I’m only going 5 mph, but that’ll hurt, you know.

Dear Costco:

Thank you for your gas being cheaper than anywhere else. It only hurt a little when I filled up today.

Dear Thyroid:

I hate you.

Dear ABC:

Please rerun Lost from episode 1 all the way through. Some of us missed it and realized it would be confusing to jump in partway through. Oh, and while you’re at it, pick up Joan of Arcadia since the dorks at CBS were too stupid to renew it.

Dear Spike TV:

Please stop running reruns of Star Trek: The Next Generation from 1-3 p.m. Instead of working, I keep watching them. This is not my fault; this is yours for having them on when I should be writing.

Dear Stomach:

Stop growling lready. You had lunch an hour ago and dinner isn't for a good 3 hours. You're not getting anything, so knock it off!

Sincerely,
Thumper

Wednesday

Gee, I feel so much better...the double murder turned out to "just" be a murder-suicide. Some guy offed his wife--with their daughter sleeping in the next room--and then went outside, walked to the creek, and killed himself. What could possibly be worth leaving your 5 year old kid without parents? What could ever matter that much?

Tuesday

Odds N Ends Part 5,893,532.9

  • Nine week old kittens are like little balls of fur hopped up on speed.

  • Said kittens have two speeds: high velocity, and off. When they’re done zipping around the room like their little asses are on fire, they drop where they’re at, even if it’s in the litter box.

  • Watching a kitten puzzle something out—and then get it right—gives a person an odd sense of pride, as if they had something to do with it.

  • It helps when one of the things the kitten figures out is that those fingers are attached to that person, and they are not chomp-down-hard toys. Just nibble toys.

  • Buddah has an upper respiratory infection, so it may be another day or two before he and Max can officially meet.

  • Buddah can sneeze out 2 inch-long boogers.

  • I don’t like having to wash my hands, clear up to my elbows…but it’s gotta be done to minimize the chances of passing whatever Buddah has to Max.

  • I don’t like having to wash my face because the kitten decided to be uber-cute, climbed up my chest, and sneezed into my face.

  • Max caught a glimpse of Buddah when the Boy opened his door; Max now wants in that room in a major way. I’m not sure if he wants in so he can play with Buddah, sniff Buddah, or eat Buddah.

  • I have to be sneaky when going into the Boy’s room to see the kitten, because Max gets super-pissed when he sees me going in or coming out. If Max could cry, he would.

  • I think Max thinks he’s being replaced; he’s been very not-annoying the last couple of days, and has not sat on my head or meowed loudly into my ear to wake me up. In fact, he sits at the head of the bed and meows very quietly, so quietly it sounds like controlled sobbing.

  • I am giving Max extra attention. And treats. He may wind up gaining a pound before the two are living in some semblance of peace.

  • I dread the day the two realize they can team up against me.

Monday

There's nothing that makes you feel more safe and secure than the news that there was a double-murder in the apartment complex right next door...

Sunday

If you can't get enough kitty cuteness...The Gallery Of Buddah. If you can get enough kitty cuteness...well, don't click on the link!
Tagged by Goss, so I present the following:

1. Total volume of music files on my computer?
--None right now; and I only had like 5 CDs worth on my last computer. I tend to rip copies of my CDs to have in the car, but I don't keep the files on my system.

2. The last CD I bought was?
--I got 4 last week: Janis Joplin, Steely Dan, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Don McClean, Yep, I'm in a late 60s, early 70s kinda mood.

3. Song playing right now:
--the CNN Headline News theme...

4. Five songs I listen to a lot or that mean a lot to me (in no particular order) :

Not actually individual songs, but there are a few CDs I've been playing a heck of a lot lately...

1. Keane, Hopes and Fears
2. Bowling For Soup, A Hangover You Don't Deserve
3. Kelly Clarkson...whatever the new CD is titled. Breakaway?
4. Chris Botti, When I Fall In Love
5. Save Ferris, It Means Everything


5. Which 5 people are you passing this baton to, and why.
--Honestly, people never do these things when I try to pass them on...

Saturday

Meet Buddah. Or rather, Professor Buddah. Max doesn’t know it yet, but Buddah is going to be his new playmate. We adopted him from the SPCA this morning and for now he’s hanging out in the Boy’s room; in a couple of days we’ll bring out something that smells like Buddah for Max to investigate, and after that we’ll do a slow introduction—Buddah in a cat cage, Max in his plastic tomb—so that they can get used to seeing each other without the chance that Max will go truly psycho and kill the little guy.

Buddah was recently rescued from a kill shelter by the SPCA; he’s about 9 weeks old and looks like he has a little Siamese in him, but other than that we really don’t know much about him. We walked into Petco this morning (we went because we knew they were going to be there with kittens, this wasn’t a oh-look-how-cute-let’s-take-one-home thing) and the Boy knew right away that was the kitten. So for the rest of the day he’s hanging in his room to keep the little furball company, and if he has to go somewhere I’ll go plop down on his bed and watch TV and let Buddah get to know me a little bit.

Max knows there’s something in that room, and he’s a little worried, so he’ll get extra attention (whether he likes it or not…) over the next few days and hopefully this whole thing will work out. I’m not too worried since he’s always trying to get the stray cats outside to come to the window to talk to him, but you never know. He did go nuts on the vet, and there’s a slim chance he’ll try to eat Buddah.

Sheesh, that sounds like a bad novel title. Eating Buddah.

I’ll have to remember it.

Thursday

Ok, I don’t normally inundate the world with pictures (usually when I do so it’s to poke at people, like the Evil Ones in their Ginormous Undies…) but hey, my kid graduated today, so you get to see pictures.

This is the only big one; the rest are thumbnails and if you’re so inclined, you can click on them to see the bigger versions. Take a good look at that face, 'cause someday it’s going to support me in the manner to which I hope to become accustomed.

Either that or he’ll buy me a BMW.

I’ll be happy no matter what.






Edited to add a ginormouse seamed picture for the grandparents...

Like Sands Through The Hourglass…

The Boy graduates today. At 3 p.m. the ceremony starts, and within an hour or so he’ll be an Uhfishal Kolidge Gradchewuht.

Of course, things always have to go wrong; for him it was a dire need for new contacts right now because he ran out and has been wearing the same pair for Too Long, and the left one finally punked out. No problem! The optometrist at WalMart takes walk-ins; all I‘d have to do is pay and then get a good receipt and submit it to the insurance company.

And wouldn’t you know, Thursday is the one day of the week that they’re closed.

So we headed across the street; Sam’s Club has an optometrist, I think. However, it was 9:50 and they don’t let Real People in before 10 a.m. Until then. Only Business People are admitted. And as far as they’re concerned, I’m just a regular Real People.

While we waited, the Boy got on the phone (yay for keeping a copy of the phone book in the car) and found someone who not only takes our insurance, but had an available appointment at 10 a.m. Sure, by then it was 9:55 and we were a good 7 minutes away, but we took it.

I hit every freaking red light between Sam’s Club and this guy’s office.

Still…45 minutes later the Boy had new contacts. He will not be forced to endure his graduation ceremony wearing glasses that hurt his head. Mom and Dad will be able to take pictures that show his sparkly gray eyes. And hair that hasn’t been cut in about a year…

Hey, he’s graduating. I don’t care how long his hair is. I’m just glad we’re here to see it, and not stuck in Ohio, where there was always the chance that the Spouse Thingy couldn’t get leave to be here. Whether kids realize it or not, graduation ceremonies are more for the parents; the after-party is for them. We get to sit there and have our “Hell yeah, that’s my kid!” moment, when we try not to think about the copious amounts of alcohol that will surely be flowing afterwards.

I don’t expect the Boy to come home at all tonight. He and his friends have displayed some signs of intelligence; if there’s drinking, they either stay where they’re at, or the two or three people who don’t drink drive them home. I suspect tonight the party will become a sleep-over.

A co-ed sleep-over.

I try to not let my brain go there.

But yeah. He’s graduating!
No more tuition!
Well, no more unless he decides to pursue a Master’s…

Wednesday

I woke up this morning with the cat draped across my chest, his tail flicking across my nose, and the perfect opening to the story that’s been pinging around in my brain right there in front of me.

After getting Max off of me, I turned on my computer, ran to the bathroom to pee (had to wait for the system to boot up and I was about to pop, so…), opened the window because it was way too stuffy in here, heard the little music thingy that says “Hey, Windows has now loaded!” and sat down, ready to write my little head off. I was going to type til my fingers bled.

And it was gone.

Just like that =poof= the perfect opening to the most kick-ass story ever written was gone. Max sat at the edge of the bed, meowing, mocking me, ticked off because he was comfortable curled up on top of me. I could almost understand him: “Hey, that’s what you get for dumping the kitty onto the bed without so much as a ‘Good morning, how are you?’ If you would have just been nice, maybe your brain would actually work. But no, it’s your brain, and we can’t expect too much…”

So I surfed around, hoping it would come back to me. I went out to run errands, hoping it would come back to me. I got back online and surfed some more, hoping I’d see something that would trigger a neuron or two into firing so that it would come back to me.

Max came back to sit at the edge of the bed again, tilted his little head, and said something I can only think translates into, “Maybe you’re brain dead. Give me some crunchy treats, and forget about it. You suck.”

Oh, and to make things worse, dark chocolate M&Ms may only be a temporary thing, and no one seems to carry them! If I had some, I know that line would come back to me, and the book would flow forth like milk and honey from the promised land.

Um, yeah.
I can get a little over the top when I can’t think straight.
And yes, the cat is mocking me.
Really.

Tuesday

The nice thing about writing is that it can be done anywhere, for the most point. I can go to the library and write. I can sit in Pizza Pucks and write while I wait for my 7 inch thin crust onion & green pepper treat. I can grab my laptop and hang out at the Barnes & Noble cafĂ©, pay way too much for a teeny tiny Diet Coke, and tap away to my heart’s content.

The problem with writing is that even though I can do it anywhere, it’s not something I can get someone else to do for me, like the dishes (which would be very nice, actually, since I haven’t done them today and I’m having back spasms, which makes bending over kind of a problem…) I’ve picked work that I have to do all by myself, with no help other than suggestions and helpful critique.

I have this idea stuck in my head; it has the structure of a kick-ass story, but I can’t seem to get it out of my head and onto the computer. I know the characters, the backstory—I have all the bones to it but the meat just won’t wrap around them. I don’t even have a literary corpse because I haven’t been able to breathe enough life into it to let it wither and die.

Eventually, that first line will come to me, and the rest will follow (after which I’ll change that first line 457 times, but without a first line of some sort, there’s simply not a second, or a third.) Right now it’s just frustrating.

Oprah will want this book if I ever write it.
Really.
It’s that good.

Stop laughing! It is! It is!

It would be nice if I could offer the Boy $20 to get it started, or convince the Spouse Thingy that it would help my back pain some if he’d just scribble out the first few paragraphs, but that’s not happening.

So I’ll sit here, and sigh hard every 4.8 seconds, trying to coax this incredible story out of a very jumbled up brain.

It’ll be worth the wait.
Really.
It will!

Monday

Mad Max

Is it terrible that I felt an odd sense of amusement when the cat displayed a growl and hiss vicious enough to make the vet take a quick, fearful step backwards? All the poor guy did was try to give the cat a cursory physical and he damn near lost his hand. Max also went after the Spouse Thingy, spitting and swiping at him with his paws, and just before we left the vet’s office he managed to bite me. It’s just a tiny mark where one of his canine teeth raked my thumb, but still. He drew blood!

I’ve never heard him growl before, and have never seen him spit with such venom. He turned into a little wild man, so pissed off that the vet had to wrap him in a towel, complete with total head covering, to take him to another room so the tech could help him vaccinate the little shit.

As far as the vet could tell without risking fingers and possibly a liter of his own blood, Max is healthy. He didn’t seem too sure about the idea of getting a kitten—probably afraid Max would disembowel another cat—but thinks (because Max has co-existed peacefully with another animal before and seems to be trying to talk to the outside cats) a kitten might help Max be more active. So the kitten-hunt may officially begin.

We may never be welcome at that vet again, though…

Saturday

We’re gonna die.

It’s 82 degrees outside, and we both thought it was over 90. Neither of us is acclimated to any kind of real heat—face it, the average high in Dayton is about 80 during the summer and there are only a few days where it gets over 90—and there’s no telling how long it’ll take us to get used to it.

July and August our PG&E bill is going to hit $500.00 because we’re going to keep the A/C on alllllll the time.

And yes, Evil People, you may point and laugh at me since I was all “oh, winter is so MILD here” while you were suffering cold and snow this year.

While you’re laughing, though, we’re over here, curled up in sweaty balls on the floor, and we’re gonna DIE.

Friday

The cat is ticked, very ticked. We apparently don’t show our appreciation for his existence in our little world enough, as evidenced by the lateness of his evening meals 3 days running. Aside from bemoaning his misfortune in having us as his People in a public manner, he decided to exact a little feline revenge on me this morning. Teach The Woman A Lesson.

He is well practiced in the fine art of Being Very Annoying, but this morning he took a cue from all those Sticky Little People he used to watch pay outside his window and decided to be Extremely Annoying. He learned to whine.

Seven a.m., I’m nowhere near ready to be awake, but there’s Max, curled up by my pillow, whining. Seriously whining. It sounds like a cross between a moan, a trill, and a diesel horn, and he was doing it right into my ear.

I rolled over; he got up, climbed over me, and continued bleating into my ear.

I don’t think he expected me to get up and feed him that early; I do think he was intentionally trying to aggravate the crap out of me.

He succeeded. He kept at it for and hour and a half; I’d roll over, he’d move. I’d push him off the bed, he’d get back up. He curled up comfortably and whined, acting like a whistling waitress standing at the counter, filing fingernails. “Sure, honey, I know you’re there and you want your order taken, but I have my own agenda at the moment. And right now my agenda is pissing you off.”

Hoping he’d stop—not wanting to reward the whining by feeding him—I made him wait an extra half hour for breakfast this morning. By 8:30 I had to get up (Mother Nature and all that, you know) so I fed him anyway, then plopped back down on the bed to watch the end of Good Morning America.

Max sauntered in, licking his chops, and smugly began meowing at the top of his lungs. Roughly translated I think he was saying, “I own you, I own you, I own you…”

And we’re really thinking of getting another one…?

Thursday

Since I’m In Love With The li Tag This Week…

  • Who’da thought that a college town would be over run with so many 18-24 year olds???

  • After perusing said college town I perused real estate listings online (just curious, we’re not moving anywhere for a while) and realized none of those students can afford to live there after graduating, unless they live 5 to a house.

  • Days like today remind me why my car is such a kick ass toy.

  • I remembered sunscreen today!

  • Nick Lachey has a clone in Vacaville, CA, and he was eating at a Roundtable Pizza this evening.

  • It’s kinda sad that I knew who Nick Lachey was long before Newlyweds.

  • Thankfully, I have only seen 1 episode of Newlyweds, and that was because I was too lazy to get up and change the channel or find the remote.

  • We have really ticked off the cat by being late with his dinner 3 evenings in a row.

  • There is cake in the kitchen, and I can hear it calling me.

  • It really ticks the cat off that he can’t have any.

  • I am going to cave in to the call of the cake, because tomorrow I have to clean house, so I deserve it.

  • Yes. Yes, I do.

  • Oh, bite me.


Wednesday

For just the 2nd time, we got to see the Boy perform. This afternoon was the run-through for the ATP Students’ Showcase; parents and siblings and invited guests got to see the dress rehearsal, and Monday they go to San Francisco to present the Showcase to a theater full of potential employers.

I’ve said before, these kids are good. The room was throbbing with talent; the audience was literally moved to tears, wondrous laughter, and fear.

Definitely fear. At least on my end, after watching the Boy’s scene, I never want to piss him off because I’ve now seen him in a fit of pure, explosive, combustible rage. He didn’t just play an angry young man on stage; he was an angry young man, and in those few minutes, completely terrifying.

I so freaking wish we could have taped the whole thing. Mostly the Boy, but I wish we could have taped the whole thing.

So Monday they head for SF, and then next Thursday they graduate.

Then…the Real World (and not the one as portrayed on MTV…) I’m not worried about what the Real World will do to my kid. I have a feeling he can grab it by the goodies and bring it to its knees.

But yeah.
No making the boy angry.
You won’t like him when he’s angy…

Thumper And The Spouse Thingy Go To The Movies

Reasons to enjoy Kingdom Of Heaven

  • Orlando Bloom is pretty.

  • Movie popcorn is tastier than microwave at home popcorn.

  • It’s nice to see that the guy who played Dr. Bashir on Deep Space Nine is working.

  • Orlando Bloom is pretty.

  • There are lots of horses in the movie.

  • Being in the theater beats being at home contemplating laundry and dirty dishes.

  • Orlando Bloom is pretty.


Reasons To Go See Crash Instead

  • Crash has an awesome ensemble cast and while everyone stands out, no one is the “star.”

  • Crash is not two and a half hours of thinking “Come on, get on with the story already."

  • Crash has a plausible and well thought out storyline. Kingdom of Heaven…not so much.

  • Crash is not loaded with close ups of actors staring mournfully into the distance, nor do any of the characters cut their hair down to nubs for no apparent reason, bonk someone else’s spouse while on a quest to become the “perfect” knight, and have all this knowledge about combat after having grown up as a blacksmith.

  • Crash will have you leaving the theater thinking, “Damn! That was one of the best movies I’ve seen in a long time!” instead of, “Eh. I think I have a popcorn kernel stuck behind one of my molars.”


But Orlando Bloom is pretty…

Monday

Since A Blog is Really Just A Letter, Of Sorts…

Dear Person Who Is Offended By Thumper’s Butt Crack,

I have to ask, how close is your nose to the monitor of your computer while you’re online? And at what resolution is your screen set? I ask because it’s pretty hard for the average person to tell by that little picture that Thumper even has a butt crack. Did you save the image to your hard drive and blow it up to double check? I can see where you would, wanting to make sure that nothing besides butt crack was showing. Thumper is completely nude in that picture and, well, other things might be visible if you looked hard enough.

While you were inspecting the picture so closely, did you happen to notice what Thumper is looking at on the computer in the background? Because, honestly, I can’t remember. Thumper had this kitty porn phase and that would be really embarrassing if we were displaying various, um, kitties for the whole world to see. Gosh, there might have even been a hairless kitty or two amongst the perusals (and for the record, I don’t find hairless kitties to be particularly attractive. It’s like looking at a Chernobyl mutant.)

Not that I want to offend anyone out there who has a hairless kitty. Just…don’t they feel kind of weird? I imagine petting one would be like stroking some old man’s arm. Or something.

Anyway. I appreciate the email and all, but really, Thumper does have quite a bit of fur to cover up all the naughty bits, and, well, it is a nice ass, if I do say so myself.

Oh, and if you’re further offended, please accept my apologies. It’s almost 9:30 p.m. and I haven’t eaten since around noon, so my blood sugar is a little low, and my judgment is probably off.

Sincerely,
Thumper’s Photographer

Sunday

In No Particular Order…

  • Yes, I changed the template for the blog. Or, rather, tweaked it here and there. I needed a change.

  • It’s Mother’s Day. As if you didn’t know already.

  • I had a very nice, quiet Mother’s Day, during which the Boy triggered a thing in my head that may produce a book at some point. I can feel the story, just can’t see it yet.

  • There was an earthquake at around 3:30 this morning. I did not feel it and found out about it 5 seconds ago when the talking head on TV mentioned it.

  • Yeah, that’s right. The earth moved and I didn’t feel it.

  • Worse, the earth moved and the Spouse Thingy wasn’t even home.

  • Dark M&Ms are quite tasty.

  • At least one person finds a stuffed animal mooning them objectionable.

  • Unlike other online book stores, Books-A-Million has the cover images and annotations for all my books. And they’re selling them cheaper.

  • The cat had a giant bug up his butt this morning, and wanted to tell the whole world about it.

  • I was asleep when he felt this need to share. But not for long.

  • There’s a female cat in heat hanging around outside; she calls to Max all day long, and he wants to go outside to see her, but he’s not exactly equipped to meet her needs.

  • We are seriously considering getting Max a sibling.

  • Max will be even more surly than before when we do.

  • All people with a Blogroll should be required to utilize the “Blogroll Me” command so I can just click and add them to mine.

  • Nearly every damned time I type the word “blogroll” it comes out “blogrool.”

  • I think I am done abusing the li tag.


Saturday

You know, instead of being concerned about the furball, I wish I’d stopped long enough to get the camera and take his freaking picture. But no, I saw him there, balancing on the top of the bathroom door, all four paws clenching maniacally to the bare inch and a half of space on which he had to balance, and instead of running for the camera, I reacted to the look of total panic in his eyes and rescued him.

Mr. Intelligence, the cat who learned in 1.4 minutes how to turn the bathroom lights on and off, whose sense of spacial orientation is such that he was able to deduct that his nose was the size of one of my nostrils and tested it for fit, many times, and who wrote his own book, thought it would be a nifty idea to jump from the dresser to the top of the door.

No, I don’t think he considered how he was going to get down if I hadn’t been there. I’m not entirely sure what he was thinking, other than “Gee, I could jump that high…”

Friday

Sunday, May 1st, as translated by Gizoogle...

Would you like ta touch mah tiara?

The truth has become painfully obvious.
It’s a trizzay tizzy I’ve joked `bout often enough, but it always was just a jizzy.
But it is a trizzay.
And mah gangsta will be so proud.

I, Wanna Be Gangsta aka K.A. Thompson, aka Wabbit, am a transvestite.

There, I said it.
I am a cross brotha.

I present this trizzuth ta be sizzelf evident; one look into mah closet n dressa bears tha chillin' revelizzles in its complete light of be'n and cant no hood fuck with death rizzow. Wit tha exception of mah unmentizzles n a few brightly colored blaza, I thizzay all mah rhymin' was purchased in tha men’s departments of various stores like this and like that and like this and uh.

Men’s jeans. Heck, they fit playa n is cheapa.
Men’s sweatshirts. Mizzuch more comfy.
Men’s t-shirts. Not mizzy choice there; mah torso is too long fo` miznost bitchez’s shirts.
Men’s socks. Jiznust coz.

I am tha antithesis of all th'n girly.

And…n…I have a beard yaba daba dizzle. It’s just a shawty goatee, but I can G-R-to-tha-izzow more on mah chizzin thizzan mizzle 15 year old boys. And a surgeon once leaned in n looked H-to-tha-izzard, thizzen asked “Have you always had tizzy mustache?”

Whizzay yes.
Yes, I have.
Thizzay you fo` notic'n.

I suppose I should embrace this revelizzles n gradually begin scratch'n me in frizzay of otha people, blam'n special odors on tha cat, n hogg'n tha remote droppin hits. Instead of listen'n ta a problem I could just jump in n try ta fix it before I’m even asked fo yo bitch ass. I could pizzle underwear up off tha floor n snizniff ta see if it’s gots one more good day left in it.

Or not.
I’m not transgendizzle pusha all.

I am a D-R-to-tha-izzag king.

I am so easily amused...

Thursday

Fair Warning

My head is all over the place today.

The day started out with a cursory visit to some of my favorite online haunts; at one of them I learned of the death of a long time regular. It’s a FMS newsgroup; there’s a whole group there who have added emotional pain to the physical they normally bear. And Joan, the woman who died, was one of the good ones. She was a sweet, sweet person who just seemed to always want to help.

A few minutes after I got done reeling from that, I surfed onto a friend’s blog to see a note from her husband: she’s in labor. Their brand new baby boy should be born sometime today, maybe tomorrow.

And thusly does the circle of life go on, a mixture of both good tears and bad.

We were supposed to go to the Y today and have some young thing tell us how fat and out of shape we are; I couldn’t face it. I didn’t feel like it, not one bit. So the Spouse Thingy called and canceled, for which I am grateful. They can tell us how fat we are another day. It gave me time to sit here and poke around, play with a website we’re designing (said as if I know what I’m doing…)

And then I tortured the Spouse Thingy. I dragged him off with me to go shoe shopping. Unlike many women, I hate shoe shopping (shopping for Chucks doesn’t count…I love those but I can’t wear them very often) but I have to twice a year; there’s something castic about my feet that chews through them every six months. And I have huge feet, it’s hard to find shoes that fit, much less shoes that are supportive enough to help my back and tender tootsies. So I want to share my misery.

And he went.
And I only tortured him for 90 minutes or so, until I found a pair that worked for me.
Yay.

For at least those 90 minutes I didn’t think about people dying, and how FMS makes it hard to tell if new pain is “something” or “just FMS,” and if someday I’ll be on the end of a really bad decision by a doctor to blow it off as just FMS.

I could spend the rest of the evening dwelling on it; I’m going to miss seeing Joan at the newsgroup and my heart does ache for her family, but I’m going to try to think about Mason, the new baby working his way into this world. His parents have wanted him for forever…my heart needs to be focused on his entry being happy and healthy, and soon.

Wednesday

I woke up this morning wondering—after an initial ohmygosh the cat is dead! thought that lingered from a really horrible dream—why people don’t write letters any more.

Yeah, I know. The thought wasn’t connected to anything specific and was oddly out of place. Who contemplates an old fashioned method of communication first thing in the morning? Especially tacked onto thoughts of the PsychoKitty being dead?

Obviously, I do.

When I was a kid I wrote to my grandparents about once a month or so. I imagine those missives were mind-numbingly boring—as if they not only knew who David Wolverton was but cared that he was ‘the smartest person EVER!’—but hopefully they appreciated the time I took to actually sit down with them in mind and write out some of the things that were going on in my pathetic little life. When I moved away, I wrote to old friends and tried to hold onto those ties to my teen years. I wrote to my parents when they were in Okinawa.

Anyone under 20 might be surprised that there was a time when the mailman brought wanted mail, not just bills and junk advertisements. People used to write honest to goodness letters; no email, no long distance phone calls (because long distance calls cost money! and we were all “thrifty.” cheap.) No IMs on cell phones or a computer. Heck, as far as I can remember, when I was a kid a computer was something that occupied an entire room and it took 20 scientists armed with reams of punch cards to operate.

So we wrote each other letters. We had pen pals, people we weren’t related to whom we wrote regularly. Heck, once in a while the school would have a fund raiser, and for 50 cents we got the address of a complete stranger to whom we could write and try to become pen pals with. And most of them weren’t in prison.

Then came cheaper long distance phone service, so we started calling more often. Then came things like Compuserve and Prodigy Online and the early days of AOL, and we connected through email and bulletin boards. And then the Internet. Real time chat, instant messages and lightning fast email.

Now the mail man delivers stuff we mostly don’t want. A genuine, handwritten letter is a rare thing.

But then the sleep cleared away, I saw that the cat was indeed alive, and when I sat up I could see my laptop on the other side of the room.

And it hit me.
We do still write letters.

We write letters just about everyday to dozens, potentially thousands, of people. Some are relatives, some are old friends, some are potential new friends. Some are potential stalkers. But we do write to them, with the same care (or lack thereof) with which we used to write to our grandparents and pen pals.

Only now we call them “Blogs.”

So.

Dear [insert your name],

Hi! How are you? I am fine. It rained today but that didn’t keep us inside. We went to a movie and then grocery shopping. You would not believe the insane people out here! I swear, I want to hit them all with a stupid stick. Wait, I think someone already did that. Truthfully, what I really want to do is buy a tank and run them all over, squishing their little pimple heads into the asphalt. I want to hear them go “pop” and watch their brains ooze. Who taught these people to drive?

Tomorrow we’re going to the YMCA—yes, yes, we finally joined—and some young hunk is going to meet with us to tell us how fat we are. He’s going to check blood pressure and body composition and then show us how to use the equipment. If he tells me I’m in danger of being harpooned in the pool, I’m going to give him an atomic wedgy, one so hard his jockstrap will cover his face. But I’ll be polite about it, of course.

Well, the cat is yelling his little fool head off. He’s in the bathroom and needs to use his litter box, but he seems to think he needs company. I have to go tell him to be quiet for 10 minutes and to poop all by himself. It’s not like he’ll fall in and drown.

Write back soon,

Love,
Thumper

Monday

Crisis mostly averted; I've managed to recover pretty much everything that was stored at thumperworks.com and have notified almost everyone I need to about the change of email address (I think. I hope.) I can now let the domain disappear into cyberspace, where a good friend pointed out that it will be snapped up and used to sell sex toys.

Consider that my contribution to society.

I will now save $15/month in hosting fees. Yay!

...and I'm still a drag king. I am! I am!
All The Pretty Pictures...

Most of my graphics are missing. This thrills me not; they're missing because the domain at which I had them stored expired. No one bothered to send me a renewal notice; when I signed onto my account to find out what was happening and tried to renew, my host claimed Network Solutions was where I registered the domain; Network Solutions claims it was registered through a different wholesaler.

So.

I seem to have lost the domain thumperworks.com.
As well as everything I had stored there.
And the email address associated with it...

That's really the only thing I care about; that email address. That address is associated with so many things it's not funny--like my PayPal account. Credit card notices go there. Sheesh.

I probably won't have time today to recreate any of the graphics, so the blog might look a little stupid for a few days. Today I have to bounce from place to place and hope that I can change my email address with Very Important Places.

Sunday

Would you like to touch my tiara?

The truth has become painfully obvious.
It’s a truth that I’ve joked about often enough, but it always was just a joke.
But it is a truth.
And my mother will be so proud.

I, Thumper, aka K.A. Thompson, aka Wabbit, am a transvestite.

There, I said it.
I am a cross dresser.

I present this truth to be self evident; one look into my closet and dresser bears the startling revelation in its complete light of being. With the exception of my unmentionables and a few brightly colored blazers, I think all my clothing was purchased in the men’s departments of various stores.

Men’s jeans. Heck, they fit better and are cheaper.
Men’s sweatshirts. Much more comfy.
Men’s t-shirts. Not much choice there; my torso is too long for most women’s shirts.
Men’s socks. Just because.

I am the antithesis of all things girly.

And…and…I have a beard. It’s just a little goatee, but I can grow more on my chin than most 15 year old boys. And a surgeon once leaned in and looked hard, then asked “Have you always had that mustache?”

Why, yes.
Yes, I have.
Thank you for noticing.

I suppose I should embrace this revelation and gradually begin scratching myself in front of other people, blaming special odors on the cat, and hogging the remote. Instead of listening to a problem I could just jump in and try to fix it before I’m even asked. I could pick underwear up off the floor and sniff to see if it’s got one more good day left in it.

Or not.
I’m not transgendered, after all.

I am a drag king.

Tag, I’m It!

J&J’s Mom tagged me this morning. She left a nasty welt when she did it, and I cried because I’m a wuss, but what the heck, I’ll play along.

What follows is a list of different occupations. You must select at least five of them. You may add more if you like to your list before you pass it on (after you select five of the items as it was passed to you). Of the five you selected, you are to finish each phrase with what you would do as a member of that profession. Then pass it on to three other bloggers.


And the list is:

If I could be a scientist... If I could be a farmer...
If I could be a musician... If I could be a doctor...
If I could be a painter... If I could be a gardener...
If I could be a missionary... If I could be a chef...
If I could be an architect... If I could be a linguist...
If I could be a psychologist... If I could be a librarian...
If I could be an athlete... If I could be a lawyer...
If I could be an innkeeper... If I could be a professor...
If I could be a writer... If I could be a backup dancer...
If I could be a llama-rider... If I could be a bonnie pirate...
If I could be a midget stripper... If I could be a proctologist...
If I could be a TV-Chat Show host... If I could be an actor...
If I could be a judge... If I could be a Jedi...
If I could be a mob boss... If I could be a backup singer...
If I could be a CEO... If I could be a movie reviewer...
If I could be a monkey's uncle... If I could be a CSI...
If I could be a contortionist... If I could be a TV preacher...

Drumroll please…. Mine are:

If I could be a writer...well, I AM a writer, but still. The part of me that wants to be a BETTER writer would have a much better work ethic, clear vision, and would have that book done already. And it would be a best seller. Oprah's authors would have nothing on me.

If I could be a doctor, I'd make sure to take the time to listen to my patients, to hear what they're not saying. And I'd be regularly telling the HMOs to screw off, because they're doing more harm than good. If I say a patient needs a test or a drug, then they need it. Period.

If I could be a missionary, I'd be the worst one ever, because I'd be going door to door saying "You're going to hell! You're Satan's minion!" Well, not really, because truthfully, I'm too shy to go door to door.

If I could be a TV Chat Show Host, I'd be a Dr. Phil clone. With less restraint. And more eye rolling.

If I could be a painter, I'd paint in bright, happy colors all the time, and I would never leave the viewer wondering what the HECK I was smoking the day I created that masterpiece.

I’m tagging Murf (yes, Murf, you have to do it!), Max, and Sam, who is pretty new to the world of blogging.