Saturday, December 6, 2014

Innocent mistake almost kills doggy: News at eleven

You read that right. I’m an ass hat. A chump, an idiot, a bad daddy to his pets. I made an error that could have been fatal to our adorable little Affenpinscher puppy who wears sweaters and coats and loves us a whooooole bunch. What was this grave misstep?

I fed the little guy grapes. Don’t do that.

So I was sitting at the PC one night, playing chess and eating grapes. The doggy jumped in my lap, curious about my odd snack. I let him have one, figuring he’d reject it and that’d be the end. But nooooo, he loved 'em! I thought to myself Ohhhh, how cool is this? My puppy loves healthy snacks.

So I gave him a few more.

All in all, it was only five, six tops, but apparently, that’s enough to kill him. For reasons science does not yet know, grapes and raisins have the ability to almost immediately shut down a dog’s kidneys, leading to suffering and death. Of course, had I known that, I’d have given him proper doggy bones. Being as I didn’t know they were deadly, I shared my snack without much thought.

The next day, I’m at work, on lunch, and I sent a text to the sweetie. Give that doggy grapes. You won't believe how much he likes 'em!

She writes back something to the effect of OMG YOU GAVE HIM GRAPES WHEN HOW WHY OH GOD WHAT IS HAPPENING.

I say yeah, last night he had a few. She informs me they kill dogs and immediately takes him to the emergency vet. So now I’m at work, in a customer service position, with over two hours to go, trying real hard to smile knowing I possibly ended the life of the best dog either of us has ever owned.

I was a wreck. All I could think about were his stupid little under bite and how he loves to play with me, eating my face, arms, and hands whilst uttering the occasional playful growl. Oh, Lawzy, I’ve literally killed our puppy. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I now know what that means.

Well, the doc gave him a good bill of health, and said either I hadn’t given him enough grapes (but they said that a single raisin once killed a poodle), or he’s one of the rarities not bothered by them. Either way, they suggested no more grapes. As if.

That was last week and he’s still doing fine, good and well, as if nothing ever happened. Every time I see him in his little sweater, I think how awful it could have been to end his life and have something like that on my shoulders. Not fun.

Moral of the story: Animals are affected by some weird shit. Research before giving them any snacks not specifically meant for them because Google knows what will kill them and what is safe for them.

And for Heaven’s sake, don’t give 'em grapes or raisins. Also on this list are pickles, onions, and chocolate. Don’t take the risk.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Male dominated societies are weird

I got to thinking yesterday at lunch about this subject, as I often have berfore, and it really does disgust me in a way. If you ask me, we need to just completely do away with most the weird crap that goes on when it comes to this subject. Ah, yes, marriage, for instance.

Take this scenario: An adopted boy marries a gal who is an only child and last of a bloodline. Well, as per our silly rules, his last name becomes hers. The result of this is that her last name is obliterated completely in favor of a last name that isn’t even the dude’s real last name! This is boggling to me.

I understand that you can opt out and go by whatever names you like and all that, but traditionally, a woman’s last name becomes her ‘maiden’ name——does that tell you how old this rule is? Maiden? Truly? When is the last time you called an unmarried woman a maiden? C'mon, now. 

I guess I’m one of very few that thinks this is preposterous, because I don’t ever hear anyone else complaining about the subject. I, for one, would hate to lose my last name randomly because I decided to be with a girl forever. I mean, not that I’m particularly mad about my last name, which isn’t even *my* real last name, but it’s the principle. If one of us has to lose it, it’s the female, because that’s the way it is. Man strong. Roar.


Is nobody else saddened a little by the fact that zillions of perfectly good and strong last names have just hit the dirt over this dumb ass system? How is it almost the year 2015 and we are still okay with just changing our names over a marriage that statistically won’t last, anyhow? It’s such a male thing to claim ownership of someone like that. You mine now, last name same. Ooga booga.

We don’t fashion tools out of stone anymore, we don’t hunt and gather in preparation for a long winter (because there are stores), and we don’t knock a gal on the head with a club and take her to our cave when we want to get a little action. Well, most of us don’t.

So why do we still go through the barbaric practice of making women take a man’s last name when they marry? Easier on the tax stuff? It’s ‘just what we do’? I can’t believe women haven’t made more of a stink about this particular rule.

Carry on.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Gobble gobble, Go to work

Yep, I worked Thanksgiving. I don’t care, truly. I don’t have kids, I don’t know how to cook and besides, Eliza worked yesterday, too, so I spent the afternoon fumbling through YouTube keyboard lessons and playing chess. Alone. I’m good with it. I’m one of the rarities who doesn’t mind spending time with nobody. I’m odd like that.

But really, holidays, most of 'em, are for families and children. None of my family was celebrating yesterday, either, because they were also working, and we have no kids, so the day was just another Thursday for this hack. Oh, sure, I would rather have had the whole day off but then again, that’s any Thursday, so there’s nothing special.

I know, I know, you are wondering what I did for Thanksgiving dinner. My holiday feast consisted of four slices of reheated pizza, a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos, an orange soda, and an obscene amount of big-ass marshmallows. The way I see it, I simply avoided the Tryptophan coma, which is probably a myth, anyhow. I’m a natural skeptic.

So yes, I tested batteries and sold brake pads and stocked shelves and gave passwords this Thanksgiving. Things could have been worse. I could have dug ditches or been homeless or choked on my Jack in the Box lunch. There’s always a silver lining. Besides, I made a little jingle, and jingle always helps out.

I watched Janis Joplin interviews after work, I played some bullet chess, I listened to piano stuff on YouTube, and then I wrapped the night up watching full stand-up comedy acts and laughing to the pets. Oh god I’m lonely. I kid, I kid. Save me.

Anyhow, I hope y'all had a great Thanksgiving and Black Friday isn’t gonna pound your ass into the ground like it will mine. Actually, I’m not sure it’ll be so bad at the auto store. It’ll be better than what the poor saps at Wal-Mart will have to deal with. Lawzy, I can’t even imagine that.


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

You are alive and okay: Remember that

Last night E and I were sitting lazily after dinner, trying to figure out what shows to watch on a brisk Fall evening when a facebook group we’re in notified us a dog had been hit on our block and someone was staying with it while rescue came.

Being lovers of small, furry four-leggers, we bundled up, grabbed flashlights and headed down the street. We were met with a grizzly and heartbreaking sight. There was indeed a man tending to a super cute and terribly injured dog. It was white with curly hair and looked like a Poodle or a Maltese——and it was running around in circles due to a brain injury. The person who hit the poor thing never even slowed down, a neighbor reported.

I ran home to grab blankets while E stayed with the injured dog. When I returned with fresh, clean warmies, I found she had relieved said man of watchdog duty, pardon the pun, and was sitting alone with a shivering but no longer spinning cutie. She’d covered it up and it was lying by a fence, obviously aware but very damaged.

Long story short, we waited with it until the guy came to take it away, and that’s when we found out it was a girl. I lifted her up and into the truck and she had no objections whatsoever, thankfully. When we set her down she began to spin again, back arched unnaturally. The driver said that he was going to put it to sleep sooner rather than later, that it wouldn’t recover from its injuries.

We walked home with heavy hearts, but also with a sort of good feeling, a sense that we’d done the right thing. The man who was watching her first had left us his business card so we could update him afterward. We called and told him the outcome and then gave our own little doggy lots of loves.

Remember, folks, no matter how bad your day/week/month/year/life is going, you aren’t spinning around in circles because of awful and irreversible brain damage. Get out there and make someone smile, give your pets a hug, hop on facebook and let someone know that you think about 'em.

Because we never know when or why.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

It's right out front if you...

I hear this quite a bit at work. The phrase causes my blood pressure to rise a little, I can’t lie.  The sheer selfishness of people never ceases to get me going. Of course, I realize that not everyone who says that to a parts counter guy is selfish, but then they are likely very lazy and/or think they are owed something from life. No matter the mindset, the phrase itself is what bothers me, not the fact that a customer wants me to go out front and look at their car.

“It’s out front...” they say, finger toward the parking lot, leading expression on their face. I just have to wonder what gives people the impression that a parts counter guy has any business out in the parking lot looking at some issue their car is having. Now, testing batteries and alternators, which we offer as a free service, is one thing, but how do I change my headlight? Truly, learn to use your computer’s search engine. That’s just pure laziness.

Here’s a typical conversation:

Customer: What headlights do I need for a [insert car here].

Me: Is yours an EX or an LX, sir?

Customer: It’s out front if you wanna check.

This phrase inevitably pops up when I have a ten-person line in front of me, and never when we are slow. No, sir, I really don’t want to go out to your Japanese car and figure out what you drive for you. I can understand not knowing a lot about cars, and that isn’t the issue. But not knowing what you drive? That is just amazing to me. And then not knowing what you drive and expecting a parts guy to hone in on the correct item for you.


All day long, folks get the years wrong, the engines wrong, the drive train wrong, the model wrong, etcetera. I don’t expect everyone to be a car guru, but I also don’t expect so many people to simply know nothing about their cars other than they go and stop. A few, yes, but not the massive amount that seem to wander into the store with dazed looks on their faces.

Stay tuned for: Folks who drive luxury cars and get pissed about prices.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Something in the Stars

So, for the past few nights, I’ve been having dreams involving A-List celebrities. While I’m sure we’ve all had them in some form or other, several nights in a row? All different stars from totally different genres?

It’s a bit wacky.

A couple nights ago, Anthony Hopkins was hunting me with the intent to kill. He almost achieved his goal. I ran from him for days (in the dream) but he finally caught up with me as I was trying to shake him under a freeway overpass. He lunged at me with a machete type blade and cut my arm up good.

Okay, I told myself, this dude is really going to take my life. I ran home, Anthony hot on my heels. I got upstairs, grabbed my Kimber .45, and the slide was broken——I couldn’t rack it to chamber a round. So I grabbed my 9mm and headed outside. 

“Be careful brandishing a weapon out there,” my father says.

“I’m not going to brandish it, I’m going to put a bullet in this fucker’s head,” I replied, and headed down the stairs.

He’d fallen asleep on a bench adjacent a sidewalk. Even in the dream, it occurred to me that shooting him like that was not only a pussy move but probably illegal and I’d fry for it since I wasn’t currently in imminent danger. I didn’t care. I put the muzzle an inch from his head and pulled.


When I looked down, the freaking barrel was actually bent to the left. Of course, he’d woken up and looked back at me, a devious grimace on his face. So I pistol whipped him, hard, and ran back inside the house. It was then that I woke in real life, heart racing and legs thrashing. Not a fun dream.

Then, just last night, I went on a sexy date with Drew Barrymore that ended...extremely well, and I spent the morning hours with none other than M.C. Hammer. I don’t remember what we were doing now, but it wasn’t anything to do with music. He was just a regular blow, only famous as all get out. 

Mmm, yes.


Now, I have been watching Stephen King bits at night before bed: Interviews, question-and-answer sessions at colleges, and etcetera. I wonder if this has anything to do with it? I also wonder why I haven’t dreamed specifically of King.

Weird stuff.

Anyhow, I realize that dreams are about as interesting as listening to the clock tick for the non-dream-haver, so I’ll stop here. I will close by saying that I’m not new to busting up dreams. I spent a good solid year reading dream key type books and learning how to decode the suckers.

But famous folks every night?  A bit odd. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The moment I knew I wasn't satisfied...

The moment I knew I wasn’t satisfied with my stupid job, I looked into freelance writing. A few short months later, in October of 2008, I had quit the job and freelanced full-time. To say it was grand would be a gross understatement. It was the bomb.

I did that for five years and, with the bottom dropping out of most the markets, I found myself doing more free than paid work. Companies began to go under and/or let most of their writers go, ESL articles were beating out well-written stuff by good writers, bots were taking over. In short, though I did have some real neat jobs during those five years, I didn’t find one (or a few) to actually support myself for the long haul.

So, then, the moment I knew I wasn’t satisfied with my article writing career, I began looking for local part-time employ. I finally found a decent job just a couple blocks from my home, and am still there today. Of course, many times I look back on when I was making good money from home and wonder what the hell happened. It’s just the way of things. I still get the occasional gig, but nothing like it was when I really beat the streets, so to speak.

And so, here I am, in exactly the same position I ended off in 2008, only making less money, if you can believe that. Do I think my foray into writing was a mistake? Most assuredly not. I gained some real life, valuable experience doing what I did, and besides, I get to tell people I was a professional freelance writer for five years. That’s kinda cool.

In a nutshell, life continues to throw its spices at me with fervor. It continues to surprise me, beat me down, and let me get back up, most of the time higher than I was before the initial beat down. One can literally only guess at the next twist and turn I’ll encounter. The only thing for sure is that I’m ready for it.

I’m always ready. 

Actively Inactive

I hardly blog at all anymore. I don’t hit many forums, I have almost zero online presence other than some shares on facebook because I finally got a camera phone that will connect. I’m still active in real life, just not online at all.


Well, I have a JAY OH BEE, for one, that has me caught in a crazy, unpredictable schedule. I no longer freelance regularly, and make no money online, so I’m a cash cow at this point. It’s neither here nor there, but it’s a different lifestyle than I’ve lived for the past five years, I can tell you that.

I’m still writing. I write a lot. Hell, probably more than I did when I had all day every day to write, and that’s the way it goes, sometimes. We all cry that we don’t have opportunities for this or for that but then we don’t do anything with them when they arrive. Welcome to human nature.

I actually scored a day off here and got to sleep in and even snuck in some extra coffee, so I’ve the energy/time to share a quickie with y'all, just letting everyone know I’m alive and okay. This entry is thanks to a blog post challenge type thing Michelle Devon made up. Thanks for that! 

With extremely limited time, my priorities shifted in a hurry. Now, my main concerns in life are work, my Ramcharger, my writing craft, reading stories, and getting as much ME time in as I possibly can. I just realized I sound like a single mother. Good grief.

It’s not that I don’t care or that I’ve disappeared, but I just simply can’t be the person I used to be at this time in life. I even let my author site lapse, mostly because I have no Paypal cash but also because I just don’t have the time to do anything with it these days.

I wish I could tell you that all my efforts were getting me rich, but truth is I’m making crap pay in an entry level position I just happen to enjoy and be good at.  I’ll never give up on my writing dream and I’ll never stop writing. And I’ve said this a thousand times, but I’ll say it once more: YES, I write because I love it and enjoy escaping into my own head, but I’d also like to make a little jingle selling stories. Any author who says they don’t is probably lying or a little crazy.  :P

Peace out for now.  I hope this all pays off somewhere down the line.