Tuesday, March 19, 2013

When PIGS fly . . . no, seriously

15 July 2012

I absolutely MUST find something better than Craig's list to entertain my hubby when I shop.  We spent a day in Houston back in March, and I did some much needed clothes shopping, since I now have to actually appear PRESENTABLE a couple of days a week when I go into the office.   Now, Steve would rather take a beating than hang out in a fat lady clothing store while I shop, so he stayed in the car, and entertained himself by trolling though Craig's list.  I came out a little while later to find him with a whole new enthusiasm . . . for micro pigs of all things.  (Really?  Pigs???)

Now, we have discussed several times lately about whether we'll be getting another dog when Molly and/or Brodie go to doggie heaven.  We love them, but they are both elderly dogs (Molly is 15, and Brodie 10), and each has some health problems (their monthly meds are more than Steve's and mine COMBINED - and I'm counting OTC Aleve and Tyelenol into that total, lol).  Somehow, though, I never thought PIGS were on the agenda . . . though I had to admit, they looked pretty cute.  And supposedly didn't get to be more than 30 pounds.   Really, though, I had something more like an English Bulldog in mind!

Now, this is the man who not only allows, but supports my fixation with breeding Birmans, so I have a hard time telling him 'no' when he wants a pet of his own.  So he called the breeder, and we discussed obtaining a 'micro piggie' of our very own.  Somehow, cooler heads prevailed, and we managed to get home without one . . . a minor miracle!

So, like a woman forgetting the pain of childbirth, and having another baby, we went to San Antonio a few weeks ago, and I again left Steve in the car, while I shopped around Hobby Lobby, trying to match some fabric for a quilt I was making.  I came back out to the car to find him all excited.  "Babe, you'll never guess who called me!!  Thank micro pig breeder from Houston!  She's got a piggie in Victoria that needs to be rescued!!!"  " I told her we'd go look at him!!!"

GULP . . . "you did, huh?"

So, there we were, 2.5 hours later, at 10pm on a Friday night, in this decaying trailer on the 'poor side' of town, looking at this little pig in a rusty old dog crate.  He was crammed in there with his litter box, food, and an old towel to sleep on.  They woke him up for us to look at . . . and let's just say he seemed somewhat less than trilled to meet us.

The owner let him out to see us.  'Dexter' wasn't what I'd call overjoyed.  

Me, trying to gently discourage this:  "He doesn't seem very friendly.  You don't want him, right, honey"?

"Oh, no, we HAVE to take him."  What the hell, I don't have good sense, either.  And Steve was right, after seeing how he lived (and I don't think he hardly ever got out of the crate) it would have been hard to live with ourselves if we just left him there.  I love my hubby for lots of reasons, but the fact that he's kind to animals is one of the biggest. 

Oh, my.  Looks like we've got ourselves a pig.

TO BE CONTINUED . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Monday, March 18, 2013

My Goat Has Been Gotten . . . Reflections on what I think of our current political farce, and other topics

I 'shared' the above photo on FaceBook today, and promptly got a response of "We could go a bit further and say give it back to the Native Americans. It was their country to begin with, not ours."

I'm calling Bullshit here.  This country belongs to those who built it, and to those who continue to build, support, love, RESPECT and fight for and bleed for it.   I have no problem with supporting the education of LEGAL aliens and immigrants. I do have issues with any smart ass who thinks that those who are in this country illegally, living off the honest sweat, tears and BLOOD of others, are more deserving than the folks who are willing to lay down their lives to protect America and her people.

We have turned into a country of people who cannot see the forrest for the trees, espousing this cause or that, simply to hear ourselves rant.  It's more about what's 'cool' to say or stand for, than it is the reality of our situation.  And, I'm pretty sure that if you're the guy standing on metal sticks, you have a pretty good grasp of today's realities.  

If you're willing to put your money where your mouth is, get your ass to that recruiting station and be willing to stand up for it with more than your poison pen and words.  That guy you're dissing with your comments was willing to put his money (and his LIFE) where his mouth was . . .  and your simplistic naivete' is insulting to him and everyone man and woman defending our country today, and their families!!!  That guy literally shed his blood so you have the right to your views.  How about you man up a little, huh?

It's no secret, I am not a supporter of our current administration.  Nor am I in favor of our current society's apparent need to race willy-nilly toward total chaos and calamity.   Why is the guy who's not working (although he is capable of doing so) more exempt from drug testing, than the one who's breaking his back daily for a minimum wage job?  Why is it OK to insult the military, and not a 'liberal'?  Why if I don't agree with our Idiot-In-Chief, am I automatically a 'racist'?  I don't care if you're black, white, brown, yellow, or pink with purple polka-dots.  I don't care if you're Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindi, Buddhist, Wiccan, or some other religion I don't know anything about. I don't care if you're straight, gay, lesbian, transsexual, transgender, or reproduce via a test tube.  I don't care what political party you belong to (both the major ones are full of idiots in my opinion) or if you'll be an independent to your dying day.  I don't care if you've got a 3rd grade education (although, I think that's a shame and a waste of a lot of potential), or are stacking doctorates on your wall.   I do care if your politics and policies are about to drive our country into the ground, or if you think you particular religion or political leanings make you think it's OK to hurt or murder people who differ from you.

It's time to wake the hell up and stand up and be counted!  I don't care for political labels, and God knows I don't want to affiliate myself with the idiots who are claiming the rape is OK, or who deny good people basic rights like marriage because of their sexual orientation.  But, really, can't we just agree that common sense should rule the day at this point?

And by common sense, I mean:

Stop sending money OUT of our country, until we're paying our own bills, and feeding our own hungry.

Don't support any country and/or regime that has no respect for America.

Educate, and support education for all American citizens, BEFORE extending this benefit to others. 

Support equal rights for all, including marriage benefits for same-sex couples.

Respect all religions, but not at the expense of the (Christian) values this county was founded on.

Support and respect our Military and their families, including paying them a living wage, and maintaining their health and education benefits. 

Respect our constitutional right to own and bear arms . . . or be willing to feel the boot of tyranny on your neck.

Now, at 50+ years old, I could give a rat's hairy ass what anyone thinks of me or my opinions, but I sure do give a damn about how people respect America. 

Stand up and be counted, or knuckle under to the erosion of your country . . . the choice is yours, America!  I know where I stand.

Friday, February 15, 2013

The Adventures of Justin

15 February 2013

I received one of the best 'kitten emails' I've ever gotten a few days ago, and just want to share it with everyone, as it perfectly describes a Birman.  Beth has been generous enough to allow me to share her email and pictures of Justin (BumbleBe Just In Time).  Justin lives with Beth and Keagan in the Denver, Colorado area.  Thanks to Beth for allowing me to share Justin's antics, and especially for giving him a great home!

"Hi Leslie,

Just thought I'd give you some Justin news and pictures - feel free to share them around if you'd like.

Justin is growing like a weed (8.25 lbs now) and is really starting to develop his own unique and funny personality.  He is probably the smartest cat I've ever had.  He took to walking on the harness in less than 2 tries, and apart from wriggling a bit when we first put it on, he now goes instantly to the door for a walk as soon as we show him the harness.  He walks just like a well-trained puppy, and learned within a week what our various command words were: come, wait, leave it, etc. (I use a big goose feather as a target when clicker training them; they zero in on it like nothing else).  He's made instant friends with our neighbors, the Sawyers- they have a 5 year old little boy Sawyer who is especially fond of kitties (they also have a big friendly orange tabby cat).  Justin is especially fascinated with Sawyer, and if he sees him outside in the yard, he will "mrrowl" loudly to announce to us that he'd like to go say hi.  We only ever let him outside of our cat-fenced enclosure when he's in the harness, and he's very good about being picked up / carried and not panicking if we see a dog or something.  He is becoming a pretty good shoulder rider, but his favorite way to be carried is upside-down cradled like a baby (no, really, he is super crazy about it and will purr and go limp and beg for a belly rub as soon as you flip him over).

He's also quite the entertainer.  He loves to play with mylar crinkle balls, feather teasers or sparkle teasers, and those little cheap fuzzy mice with the feather tails (he likes any toy that sparkles and/or rattles, basically) but his special favorite toy is a champagne cork cage that he "won" from a guest at a party (by basically being super cute and vocal, and reaching for it with a paw until we figured out what he was "asking" for).  We made sure it doesn't have any ends sticking out, but otherwise he'll chase and bat and carry it all over the place.  We have a "toy box" for both of the boys where we pitch all the dozens of not-in-service toy mice and soforth, and Justin is a pro at climbing up into the toy box, and selecting a toy (usually his champagne cage) to carry around and play with.  Keagan taught him to play "fetch" with a feather mousie within 3 or 4 sessions, although being a typical cat, he will only play "fetch" when the mood strikes him.

Oh and talking.  Justin is a champion talker.  He definitely has a large vocabulary of his own unique and endless repertoire of different "words" and noises.  One of his signature tricks is to "ask" for something (food, a toy, something interesting on the TV, whatever.)  He will point a paw and trill / mrowl at whatever he wants until we either give it to him, or say "no, Justin, not for kitty!".  The TV is an endless source of fascination for him, with his 2 favorite subjects being football and Top Gear (UK car show), which just goes to show, you can take the cat out of Texas, but not the Texas out of the cat.  Something about the noise and motion really gets him worked up, and he will stand on the media stack batting at the players / cars or "talking" to them for as long as the show is on.

He and Marlowe are fast friends and love to chase, play-wrestle and play soccer / stalk with toys together.  As you can see by the photos they also sleep curled up together in/on whatever bed, box, perch or surface they can stuff or otherwise contort themselves into together.  The intro has been especially good for Marlowe, who has definitely become more active and engaged in play and less shy around guests owing to Justin's gregarious personality.

Justin and Marlowe snuggled up.

Justin had his follow up booster at the vet awhile back, and was a super good patient.  He goes right in the carrier with no fuss, doesn't say a word in the car, and even though he's been to 2 checkups at the vet now (one for initial exam, one for booster) he has no fear of the vet, and even gives her the "happy cat" greeting of the quivering upright tail and cheek rub- something I have never seen any cat tell a vet until now!  Of course we still have to get him chipped and neutered, so he might change his mind, but I'm waiting for him to get a little more mature first.

They both sleep together curled up on our feet every night (although occasionally Justin decides he'd rather sleep curled up in my armpit or something).  I want you to know that Justin is really a wonderful cat and a real credit to the breed and to the time and work you put into raising your kittens.

I'm including an extra picture I took yesterday of Justin "begging" for me to take him for a walk, the little comedian.  He does this (as you can see) by jumping up onto the shoe rack next to the door (we keep all our spare keys/gloves/hats/shoes and the cats' walking harnesses on it), "mrrowling" and playing with the harness.  I half expect that he'll start retrieving the harness to us soon; he has already started bringing us toys he wants us to throw for him.

Justin waiting by the door for his walk.

I'll keep you updated on Facebook as well (Keagan posts a LOT of snapshots of the boys on his timeline) but for now, best of luck with the kitty clan, and enjoy the photos!

Beth & Keagan  "

I was just blown away - what a perfect little guy Justin is, and how well Beth captured his antics.
Thanks again Beth and Keagan!