Jul 19, 2016

On adopting babies and such...

If you have been following this blog for a while, you may wonder why there was a huge long pause and then suddenly I came back and there was a toddler in my stories.  As most of you know, I was, in my other life, previously a single dog lady with a side-helping of cats.

All of a sudden, fate threw me a curveball and life changed in every way.

Now, I am also (I still have aforementioned dog and cats) a single adoptive mother of a splendid baby boy, who is actually now a toddler.  It was a private adoption and I will spare the lad's privacy by not telling you the circumstances surrounding it, but suffice it to say it was a huge life change.  The lad, whom, for the time being, I referred to as "Meatloaf" due to his gargantuan size (he was 22 lbs. at less than 6 months), was born in December 2013 and came home from the hospital with me.

People's reactions varied to the news, but mostly, everyone sweetly said things like, "Holy f***, M!  You f***ing adopted a child!" and other endearing nothings of that nature.

The most common reaction, though, happened something like this:

Person: Hey, M, what's new?
Me: Well, I adopted a baby.
Person:  A baby?  Like...umm... a baby dog? Like a puppy?
Me: No, like a little boy baby.
Person:  A boy puppy?  What did you name him?  Is he neutered yet?
Me: Like a human boy baby.  He's not neutered.
Person:  Holy f***, M!  You adopted a f***ing child!"

This happened far more often than one would imagine.  And even though I have been known to cuss like a sailor, my eardrums were pretty much seared from all the F-bombs I heard in those early weeks during which I suddenly announced to the world that actually, I'd had a baby living with me for a few weeks already.

Because it was the middle of winter in the midwest (the worst winter since 1979, so they say) and because I have a dog, I would put my darling Meatloaf (who was actually a mere Porkchop at the time) inside a sling inside a special "babywearing coat" which cost somewhere between 175 and eleventy billion dollars, zip him under there good, and go cross the tundra to let the dog tinkle.

One of my neighbors spotted me and my bulging (is it just me, or does that word always sound naughty??) coat, and the conversation started anew.  Except this time, when I mentioned I had a baby in my coat, my neighbor expressed her doubts.  She actually asked me to open my coat and show her the baby, which I did, mostly because I was kinda stunned.

At this point, she peers into my coat, spots DSS's baldish head and says, "No f-ing way! Are you kidding me!?  You totally stuck a doll in there!  Right?!"

Let me tell you something... I am quite confused as to how it is believable that I am crazy enough to walk around with a doll in a 179 thousand dollar, gold-lined baby-wearing coat trying to trick hapless neighbors into thinking I adopted a baby, faking my glassy-eyed "I-haven't-slept-in-4-weeks" look," but apparently it would not be believable that I had actually adopted a baby (the kind that you don't have to neuter).

My most favoritest SMH adoption story happened when a lady from the bank came to refinance my condo.  As she worked, she asked questions about Dear Sweet Son and about his adoption. Now, at this point, I had already told her that he was currently eight months old and that he had been with me since he was born. 

As he sat on my lap, cooing, laughing, and drinking his bottle, she looked at me, perplexed, and queried helpfully, "Wow!  He really seems to like you!  Do you think he knows who you are?"

Cricket... cricket...

Umm, well, sheesh... I sure hope so... I have changed almost every diaper and filled every bottle since the day he was born. It would be shockingly bizarre if he woke up every morning and thought, "Well, who the flippin'-flop is this lady?!"

A few minutes later, she asked me if his adoption was the kind where "you don't have to return him, or the kind where he has to go back."  I'm really not certain where she got her adoption information, but the textbook she used clearly leaves a lot to be desired....

I think at one point, every adoptive parent has heard something similarly odd(or they have very nice, tactful, well-informed friends), but sheesh, you can't make this stuff up!

A delayed welcome to my Fries with Mayo World, little (aherm...) Meatloaf!

Jul 17, 2016

Do Pets Prepare You for Children? Yes. Yes, they do.

One of the good things about being a pet owner before being a parent is that you get the opportunity to sometimes practice with parenting tools, such a cabinet locks, ahead of time. Now, you might make a guess that the dog would get into the trash or something, or maybe into the pantry cupboard, and this is why I would need the cabinet locks, but you would be wrong.

Luckily for me, Bad Cat is about as bright as a sack of rocks... or maybe a sack of broken light bulbs, because we know how bright those are.

Unfortunately, Good Cat is blessed with above average cat intelligence and can open all cabinet doors using strange combinations of head banging and paw flipping.  This in itself would not be a problem if a) he didn't open the linen closet and b) Bad Cat didn't love to pee on linens.

So anyway, cabinet locks.  Yay.

Good Cat, as I've previously mentioned, has a splendid and hearty appetite, especially after he has indulged in a good hit of catnip.

One day, I came home from work to find Good Cat missing and Bad Cat looking decidedly put out.  After much searching of rooms, I decided perhaps I should check all the cabinets and closets, and I started with the kitchen since it seemed like as good a place as any.

Upon opening the trash can cabinet, I found a rather repugnant sight.  There was "Good" Cat, lying belly up inside the trash can, a chicken bone underneath his crossed paws, and a few pieces of chicken skin strewn across his shiny coat.  And no, I am not saying "shiny" in a complimentary way because he was shiny in the same way that Fat Bastard was in the eyeball-searing scene in one of the Austin Powers movie, the one where he (Fat Bastard) is lying in bed wearing not much except turkey grease and snaggle-toothed smile.

Now before you panic about sweet, soft kitties and the fact that Good Cat might actually be dead in this story, I want to remind you that he was still mentioned as being alive in my other post, so you should stop fretting.  Good Cat was just seriously bloated, pancreas probably just on the verge of exploding like a water balloon filled with tomato sauce (tomato balloon?), satisfied as all get out, covered in chicken grease-slime, and apparently quite proud of himself.

He didn't even try to fight back as I removed him from the trash can; he was like a 15 lb. sack of nasty, grease-covered, hairy whale blubber.

I had one of my friends come help me set up those little flippy cabinet locks the next day.  For the next week, Good Cat would sidle up to the trash can cabinet hopefully, a lusty gleam in his cat eye, and attempt the paw-flip/head-bang the cabinet open.

It never worked again.

Jul 14, 2016

The Truth Comes From the Mouth of Babes, Except When It Doesn't

They say the truth comes from the mouth of babes.  This may be true, except that sometimes, lies also come out of the mouths of babes, and then everyone's so busy believing trite platitudes about the truth that they assume the lies are truths and awkward awkwardness ensues.

This came to play the other day (and several times since) when I went to the wonderful world that is Walmart.  Dear Sweet Son was in the cart, charming people with his winning smile as usual, trying to grab energy shots (which we know toddlers need quite much) off the shelves of the checkout line.

As we got the the cashier, DSS decided to woo two middle-aged female employees with his great charms.  They succumbed instantly and began cooing over him in broken English (and I say this with love, as someone who spoke broken English for quite some time), patting his bare feet (bare due to the bizarre toddler need to instantly remove all footwear), and patting his adorable buzzcut.  He smiled his smile, turned around and directed their attention to the entrance of the bathroom (conveniently located near the register).

He then proceeded to whisper in a shouting sort of tone, a highly important piece of information:

This was a blatant lie.  I do not, in fact, poop in the Walmart bathroom.  In fact, I cannot think of the last time I pooped in a Walmart bathroom ever, even before he was born.

The two lovely ladies, however, appeared to believe his every word.  They looked at me, concerned, as if trying to figure out if they had correctly understood his Frenchly-accented English, looked at me as though to say, "So YOU'RE the one who poops in our bathrooms!?!"

No.  No I am not.

I laughed a hearty, devil-may-care laugh, as if to say, "Silly kids!  Full of completely nonsensical untrue untruth!  Har-dee-har."

In reality, which is what happened outside of my head, I turned a crimson color and stammered, "No!  No, I don't go poop there!  I've never gone poop in there and I have no idea where he got that idea!"

Meanwhile, my traitorous child repeated this piece of information with an innocent, persuasive look upon his traitorous face.  Pointed innocently to the bathroom, eyes wide open.  Looked at the two ladies with doe eyes meant to convey he was a pawn, dragged into a public bathroom for my pooping pleasure.

The ladies' bathroom sign taunted me (ok, I realize that in the picture, it slightly resembles an ad for a naughty nightclub of sorts, but it was supposed to convey taunting-ness) as I hustled my little Benedict Arnold out of the Walmart, the two little ladies still staring at us wide-eyed with shock and disbelief.

Lest you think this story stops here, it doesn't.  Let me tell you something about Targets and Walmarts and such: their bathrooms are all right by the cash register.  Every time we leave the store, my DSS will shout, "Mommy poops here!"

And I still don't.

Not even at Target, which has nicer bathrooms with far less toilet paper on the floor.

Nov 1, 2015

Conversations with my toddler

Conversations with my toddler (B's side approximated by translation)...

B: I would like some tea, Mummy dearest.

M: No you don't. You don't like tea.

B: I want tea.

M: Are you sure?

B: I'm sure. Brew me some, please.

M (brews some tea, adds honey, turns it into a cooler temp, puts in sippy cup, presents to B)

B (with a dismissive wave): No, no. I don't like tea.

...............(elapsed time)..............

B: Banana, please, darling mother.

M: You'd like a banana! Let me get you one! Would you like it peeled or to eat it like a monkey?

B: Monkey-style, dearest mum. That sounds like the most fun!

M: Here you go!

B (takse one bite): Here, Mummy. Here's a banana I got for you!

M: I don't want a banana right now. That one's yours.

B (peels down the banana till the top of it flops over and lands in a pile of cat hair): Oopsies. Your banana fell, Mumsy.

M (picking up the hairy banana chunk): OK. We're just going to put this banana in the compost because *I* don't feel like eating a hairy banana. I'll just eat the small piece that's left there.

B (breaking into sobs): No! No! I WANT that hairy banana! Please, don't throw its battered body away to the compost! Why would you perform such a heinous act!? GIVE ME THE HAIRY BANANA!!!!


I hate daylight savings time changes.... time changes matched almost perfectly with a full moon and Halloween.

Aug 6, 2013

When cries from within the litterbox call

In case you don't remember because I hardly ever write here, I have one Good Cat and one Bad Cat.  You may remember Bad Cat from this episode.  You can rest easy knowing that I accidentally switched back to the brand of deodorant he prefers, and I am once again peeling him daily from his attachment to my armpits.

I digress.

This is actually a very short post.

I have learned over time to psychically predict when Bad Cat is about to pee because he starts to yowl several minutes ahead of time.  Lest you decide my cat has a urinary tract infection and start getting all judgy, I will preemptively tell you that you are wrong so that you don't embarrass yourself later.  He's fine.  My hordes of friends all know about my cat's weird habits.  In fact, when we're in the restaurant and one of my friends has to pee, she will meow loudly in my ear so I exit the booth and let her pass.  Or, alternatively, she will meyowl softly in my ear, which is almost not disturbing at all.

Anyway, Bad Cat had just spent a good half hour working up bladder pressure by antagonizing and violating Good Cat after an unfortunate exposure to catnip.  When Good Cat smells catnip, he's mellow and craves White Castle. When Bad Cat smells catnip, he gets violent, angry, and amorously lascivious, all at once.

He disappeared to the litter box, and within seconds, I heard the screeching meows beginning.  However, unlike in his normal potty excursions, the meowing did not soon stop.  Oh no... it increased in both volume and duration.  It was soon followed by loud thumping sounds, and then... the meowing became muffled.

Concerned, I decided to go take a look.  I came face to face with this disturbing spectacle.

Round and round Bad Cat spun, face buried deeply in his soiled, disintegrated Feline Pine litter pellets.  Like a little kitty cat-litter-face-plow, he plunged his head, eyes open, into the piles, the meows a screeching crescendo from the top of his lungs.

There is no deep ending or moral to this story.  In fact, I have no flipping clue what he was doing or why he thought it was a good idea.  In fact, I may actually have said, "What the...?" and then dropped the F-bomb. In other fact, his eyes may not even have been bloodshot, for all I know, but I think they were.

Because of the catnip.

Feb 5, 2013

Dances With Coyotes: A Public Service Announcement

I won't waste your time telling you why I haven't written in a million years.  No one really cares.  So, moving on...

HyperHund and I spend our evening walks in the hunting training grounds located nearby.  This is basically a tundra with no windbreaks but plenty of coyotes.  This is really fun for us, especially when the sun starts to set and it gets dark and the ice on the lake is cracking and the coyotes are howling from around us in a circular yet invisible formation, and it's all very reminiscent of Simba wandering into the elephant graveyard, except with more coyotes, fewer hyenas, and remarkably few dead elephants.

Our area has been having a minor "coyote problem," with "minor" meaning unprovoked attacks on humans, random eatings of common household creatures, and coyotes trying to break through glass patio doors to reach the aforementioned household creatures.

And yet, tonight, at the hunting training grounds, I saw several cars lined up on the street side, coyotes circling around them, while some random ding-dongs attempted to whistle the coyotes over close to try to lure them to eat delicious snacks from their hands.

I am not sure why they thought this was a good idea.  Coyote need to stay afraid of humans.  No good can come of luring them over with hot dogs.  This reminds me of a story my dad told me in which he saw a family attempting to lure alligators out of the Florida Everglades with pieces of hot dogs held by children.  Also not a good idea, if I ever heard one.

Nevertheless.... not a good plan. I imagine one of several things was going on in these people's heads.

a) They fancied themselves in a Disney movie of sorts, perhaps where all the animals were dancing together in harmony, ribbons inexplicably flying through the air, and everyone singing.  In this fanciful moment, the coyotes would be prancing along in unbridled glee.

(Yes, I realize the lyrics are incorrect. Focus on the prancing coyote.  Cute, huh?)

b) Perhaps they believe that, in feeding the coyotes, they are bonding with them... connecting nature to human... truly bridging the language gap and using almost mystical powers to turn these feral creatures into familiars or totem animals.

I do not want to be the bearer of bad news.  I will be, though, because the truth is that the first sentence in this paragraph is actually a lie.  I'm fine with breaking the bad news. The fact is, the coyote does not love you, care for you, or want you to domesticate it.  Ribbons will not fall from the sky, birds will not help you make your prom dress, no one will sing like Pocahontas. 

No.  The coyote sees you and your hot dog as one thing, and one thing only:

Don't fool yourself.  If the coyote could unhinge his jaw, he would eat you like an egg snake swallows that egg.  He might lure you into a sense of security by prancing with you and singing a Disney song first, but make no mistake... you are not his friend.  Or maybe you are, but in the same way that bacon is my friend.  Incidentally, this should not be reassuring.

Befriending coyotes can only lead to several ends...

The coyote is no longer afraid of people.  Then, he will either get shot, get moved, or you'll notice your furry household friends no longer showing up for din-dins...

This has been a public service announcement.  Please do not feed or befriend the coyotes.  You are not Pocahontas or Dances With Coyotes.  No good can come of this.  Leave the wildlife alone, and keep your processed meat products to yourself.  Thank you for your concern.

Aug 19, 2011

Dog peeing in mayo and frothing blood

Sometimes, for fun and enjoyment, I look in my blogger stats and find out what search keywords led people to my blog.  I have come across some interesting ones, such as "dogs that look like sheep," "funny puggle stories and nicknames," etc.  But hands down the most disturbing one so far has been... wait for it...

"dog peeing in mayo."

What? WHY?  And in case you are lulled into some sense of security thinking that maybe this was some sort of crazy typo someone made, let me inform you that this search string led not one, but two different people to my blog.

This leads me to wonder if there is some subset of people that enjoys watching dogs pee in mayonnaise.  That's actually pretty specific, and trying to watch it happen must be pretty un-fulfilling seeing as, oh, it probably hardly ever happens.  I suppose it could be carefully staged to happen, but still.  Why? (In case you were wondering, I am not going to draw a picture of this, because then whoever was searching for this would actually have found what they were looking for on this blog.  Then everyone would come here just to look at a picture of a dog peeing in a jar, or maybe a plate, of mayonnaise.)

Anyway, on a completely related note, I have been walking every morning with my dog and a group of other people, and they all have bully breeds (one also has a particularly ornery pekingese, but that dog mostly stays out of the fray).  My dog is the sole shepherd in a group of a boxer, a boxer-mastiff, and a pit bull with a head the size of one of those little school buses.  This means that while the bullies are all running around jawing each other and body-slamming, HH is running around them in a circle, helpfully keeping them close together, herding them and barking in a totally-not-annoying way.

You'd think with a group like this in the park, most people would be the least scared of the fuzzy shepherd dog and maybe the most scared of the bus-head pit bull.  And they are... at first.

Sadly, my dog does not make a very good first impression.

First of all, he has repeatedly gotten into burr bushes, which led me to shave him and hack out large chunks of tail hair, which then led him to look more like a mange-ridden coyote than an English Shepherd.

Secondly, my little HH has an almost manic obsession with a certain empty field behind the park, so much so, in fact, that my fellow dog walkers have named it his "Field of Dreams."  I have to leash him as we walk toward it so he doesn't get there 20 minutes before I do.  Then, he pulls on his leash, gagging and grunting in a pathetically valiant effort to get there as soon as possible.

Something about running through the tall grass in a specific field  causes him to go into an absolute frenzy.  He tears through this field with no apparent purpose, mouth snapping wildly as he rips out long blades of grass, with Bus-Head running behind him, not having a clue why this is fun but suspecting that if HH is doing it, maybe he should be, too.

And then, HH comes out of the field, drenched in dew, eyes bulging from his head, jaws open, tongue out, and mouth frothing with.... blood.  Yes.  Blood.  While Bus-Head, Boxer, and Mastiff Mix are being cute in a giant-cranium, thuggish sort of way, my dog is frothing blood.

You might be thinking at this point that I am a horrible dog owner, but really, the Field of Dreams is to blame. The grass is quite sharp or maybe serrated even, and when HH runs through it, tearing it out as he runs, apparently this lacerates his tongue.  Combined with the wet, wild-eyed, mangy coyote look, this really ties the look together in a combination that causes most people to back away from him and straight into a pile of rough-housing bullies.

Who can really blame them?  Those dogs just seem safer, at this point.