gwyn: (stitch)
Today/last night is the worst day.

A year ago, I lost my beloved kitty Olive, and I know she was just a cat, but not a day goes by still that I don't think of her and miss her and hurt over how she died. When I started pulling out my summer stuff to wear there was still her fur on a lot of things, and I occasionally find the little toys she buried in odd places around the house.

And it's five years ago that we lost Sandy, and I still miss her so much it aches and her laugh and her sense of humor. I was vidding a lot the last few months, and I kept trying to hear the Snady voice in my head reminding me of things, and just wishing I could hear the real voice.

I know I never seem to post much here these days except sadness and fic announcements. I guess that's a fairly good summary of my life lately. There doesn't seem to be a lot in between, but I keep hoping to do better, and be more active.
gwyn: (skinny steve)
I miss Miss Kitty so much. I can't stop thinking about how terribly she died, and Blues is still so...I don't know. Different. Last night he was sleeping and made this howling noise in his sleep, which he's never done before. He got pretty sick a few weeks ago, though, so I suppose he's just different in a lot of ways. I had to take him to the vet urgently, which meant lots of $$, and his lungs were not looking good. They were concerned he has kitty asthma or heart problems, but the steroid and antibiotic shots they gave him seemed to help a lot. But he's not the same. I know how crazy that sounds, but he's not. I know some of it is health, some of it is missing Olive, some of it is that he's the solo kitty here and he doesn't have competition.

Even though I can't really afford it (I am right now having contractors in to rebuild the south wall of my house, because the siding was peeling away and the underlayer was disintegrating, and wow, talk about beaucoup bucks), I'm making my plans to go to DC again in October. It's probably the last time my friend will be there when I can visit, and then we'll head up to NYC either for one or two nights. Pretty much same thing I did last year. I had so much fun location scouting for Cap2; I won't have quite the same level of fun this time in that respect, but I've made some new acquaintances since then that I can meet up with, so that would be good. Just trying to hold on to one or two things that make me feel like I can keep going.

I'm writing, but it's hard. I just feel like it's pointless, a waste of time.

These are some pictures that black_bird_777 took of Olive a few years ago in the backyard. She was such an amazing kitty. It's hard to sleep without her purring by my head and her little head resting on my hand. Plus she had the daintiest little feet, and I miss feeling them on my back when she'd walk across me.

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gwyn: (skinny steve)
I miss Miss Kitty so much. I can't stop thinking about how terribly she died, and Blues is still so...I don't know. Different. Last night he was sleeping and made this howling noise in his sleep, which he's never done before. He got pretty sick a few weeks ago, though, so I suppose he's just different in a lot of ways. I had to take him to the vet urgently, which meant lots of $$, and his lungs were not looking good. They were concerned he has kitty asthma or heart problems, but the steroid and antibiotic shots they gave him seemed to help a lot. But he's not the same. I know how crazy that sounds, but he's not. I know some of it is health, some of it is missing Olive, some of it is that he's the solo kitty here and he doesn't have competition.

Even though I can't really afford it (I am right now having contractors in to rebuild the south wall of my house, because the siding was peeling away and the underlayer was disintegrating, and wow, talk about beaucoup bucks), I'm making my plans to go to DC again in October. It's probably the last time my friend will be there when I can visit, and then we'll head up to NYC either for one or two nights. Pretty much same thing I did last year. I had so much fun location scouting for Cap2; I won't have quite the same level of fun this time in that respect, but I've made some new acquaintances since then that I can meet up with, so that would be good. Just trying to hold on to one or two things that make me feel like I can keep going.

I'm writing, but it's hard. I just feel like it's pointless, a waste of time.

These are some pictures that black_bird_777 took of Olive a few years ago in the backyard. She was such an amazing kitty. It's hard to sleep without her purring by my head and her little head resting on my hand. Plus she had the daintiest little feet, and I miss feeling them on my back when she'd walk across me.

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gwyn: (bucky confusedface)
I know I owe a lot of people responses or comments, about my previous posts and the recent fic, and I'm sorry I haven't done that. I'm just having a really hard time right now. I keep seeing Ollie's broken little body, how mangled she was and how brutally and terribly she died, and nothing really means anything right now. I found a little sleeping kitty statue to put over her grave, and some plants to plant around it, but Blues keeps going over to the spot where I put her body when I was trying to find something to wrap her in, and lying down there. And he wouldn't sit in the perch all week, maybe because she wasn't around for him to chase out of it, and he doesn't seem to really know what to do with himself. We're a pair, because I don't either.

And of course now the horrible heat wave has broken but it's too late, she's gone, but hey, don't have to open the doors to get some air in the house anymore, whatever. I'm slated to leave for Vividcon on the 4th, but I wish I wasn't going. Even though I'm traveling with my beloved killabeez, and we're going in early to Chicago and staying at a posh hotel and sightseeing, I just don't care about much of anything right now and the idea of socializing fills me with dread, plus no one's going to want to socialize with me because I'm not exactly good company right now. I couldn't ask for a better person to travel with though, and I'm sure we'll find fun things to do (plus I get to meet up with my dear devilpiglet, as well).

I'm even going to be cosplaying Rachel Duncan from Orphan Black for the dance party, along with other clone sestras, but I just…all I feel is massive depression. I have gauze and a pencil, am waiting for pajamas to arrive that I pray are going to fit, but all I could find was short-sleeve, plus I wish my hair was still blond, I'm not really going to look anything like Rachel. Still, wearing pajamas for Club Vivid will be easy.

I just miss my girl so much. I don't want to wash my sheets because all the fur where she slept will be gone. I don't want to put her little confiscated dog bed away (every foster dog that tried to reclaim the dog bed for the canine set was met with a swift paw to the snout). Putting away her food dish and her milk dish was the hardest thing I've done in a long time. And I can't explain to Blues what's wrong, and he's really upset most of the time.
gwyn: (emma crime)
My baby girl, Olive, died last night. It's all my fault, I was closing up the house because I'd had the doors open since the house was 97 degrees inside when I got home. She decided that if I was closing up, it was time to go walkabout, I guess, and something attacked her. I tried to get her back in all night, but when it's hot out, she would often stay out all night and show up like, what? in the morning after I'd spent a sleepless night worrying about her.

No need to lecture me about outdoor kitties. I lost the war with her a long time ago, and I've lived in fear of this day. She'd gotten so much better in her old age, content to lie under the grill in the shade on the back deck, or hang out in the window perch next to me while I worked.

She slept on my bed next to my head, and hated Blues kitty so much she tried to move in with a neighbor once. Every morning they slap-fought while I got their food ready. She loved milk more than anything in the world. She loved to play, even at her age, and chase fuzzy wooly balls around, and she talked to me all the time and loved to lick me, especially after I'd put lotion on.

She was my best bud, and I hate myself now for letting her go. I love her so much.

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gwyn: (emma crime)
My baby girl, Olive, died last night. It's all my fault, I was closing up the house because I'd had the doors open since the house was 97 degrees inside when I got home. She decided that if I was closing up, it was time to go walkabout, I guess, and something attacked her. I tried to get her back in all night, but when it's hot out, she would often stay out all night and show up like, what? in the morning after I'd spent a sleepless night worrying about her.

No need to lecture me about outdoor kitties. I lost the war with her a long time ago, and I've lived in fear of this day. She'd gotten so much better in her old age, content to lie under the grill in the shade on the back deck, or hang out in the window perch next to me while I worked.

She slept on my bed next to my head, and hated Blues kitty so much she tried to move in with a neighbor once. Every morning they slap-fought while I got their food ready. She loved milk more than anything in the world. She loved to play, even at her age, and chase fuzzy wooly balls around, and she talked to me all the time and loved to lick me, especially after I'd put lotion on.

She was my best bud, and I hate myself now for letting her go. I love her so much.

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gwyn: (emma crime)
My kitty Blues (the same one who caused me such much suffering last summer with the bite) sliced my cheek open last night. I guess now I'll finally have that Heidelberg Fencing School dueling scar I always wanted.
gwyn: (pussypad kerry beary)
Just wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone for the kind comments and support about the cat bite and the allergic reaction. The past week has been...really weird, but having you guys for support made it a lot easier. I completed the IV antibiotics on Friday, and the cellulitis (the infected tissue in my arm from the cat bite) was reduced quite a bit. In the pic below, you can see some pen marks on my arm; they usually draw the boundary of the infection to keep track of where it starts off, and they don't want it to spread past that when you start treatment, mine spread a little farther but not too much, and it definitely had scaled back a lot by Friday. The two right hand puncture wounds were the worst, but the left top one was really gross so I left the Band-Aid on. ;-)

arm bite

I will continue to take antibiotics for the next week, and most of the redness is gone by now. I wish the pain was gone too -- that part is definitely harder. Anything touching the arm, especially pressure on the puncture wounds, is still just really effing painful, and it's hard to sleep since I'm a stomach sleeper and my arm rests at my side. I'm still taking pain meds and Benadryl to get rid of the allergic reaction, but my joints are a lot less swollen now and the aching and feverish feelings is mostly gone.

The hardest part is that I'm kind of afraid of Blues now. I just don't feel like I can trust him at all, and it's hard coming to terms with the fact that he's no longer my sweet little boy. He was always such a sweet, tender, loving little guy until he hit about three, and then he put on a growth spurt, gaining about four pounds and three inches in length. He also became a bully to Olive, and basically acted like a...frat boy. He was about 80 percent of the time a sweet, fun guy, and then 20 percent of the time an entitled, mean, bullying little shit monster who seems to think Olive and I are here to serve him. He is relentless in his pestering of her, and went from a guy who was always trying to get her attention in a "HEY LADY! LADY, HEY!" kind of way to pouncing on her and biting her neck. She could totally kick his ass, too, but she never does, and I feel so bad for her.

He cuddles up to me in my sleep in the mornings, but there have been times where, since he's a ginormous cat now and a bed hog, I try to move him over a bit and he'll start kicking furiously with his hind claws at my hand, and nipping me. He's never bitten through skin, though, and I think that it's probably likely that he'll do this again, despite the horrible reaction I had and that he was probably hurt by how hard I slammed him off of me. I just...I don't know how to get him to behave; Olive learned really fast that biting at hoomin was not a good idea, but Blues is just apparently incapable of learning lessons. I've picked him up a few times and tried to cuddle him but I just feel really wary of him now. I hate that. Those kitties are the only thing keeping me going and it's terrible to fear one of them.

He also never used to talk, now he sits in the kitchen and endlessly wails to be let out, which I won't do, and that seems to piss him off as well. Arg.

I had been making progress on my Idyll Challenge story. This set me so far back on my book that I haven't been able to work on it (and honestly, it hurt to type, so there was that). I doubt I can make the 22nd deadline.
gwyn: (pussypad kerry beary)
Just wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone for the kind comments and support about the cat bite and the allergic reaction. The past week has been...really weird, but having you guys for support made it a lot easier. I completed the IV antibiotics on Friday, and the cellulitis (the infected tissue in my arm from the cat bite) was reduced quite a bit. In the pic below, you can see some pen marks on my arm; they usually draw the boundary of the infection to keep track of where it starts off, and they don't want it to spread past that when you start treatment, mine spread a little farther but not too much, and it definitely had scaled back a lot by Friday. The two right hand puncture wounds were the worst, but the left top one was really gross so I left the Band-Aid on. ;-)

arm bite

I will continue to take antibiotics for the next week, and most of the redness is gone by now. I wish the pain was gone too -- that part is definitely harder. Anything touching the arm, especially pressure on the puncture wounds, is still just really effing painful, and it's hard to sleep since I'm a stomach sleeper and my arm rests at my side. I'm still taking pain meds and Benadryl to get rid of the allergic reaction, but my joints are a lot less swollen now and the aching and feverish feelings is mostly gone.

The hardest part is that I'm kind of afraid of Blues now. I just don't feel like I can trust him at all, and it's hard coming to terms with the fact that he's no longer my sweet little boy. He was always such a sweet, tender, loving little guy until he hit about three, and then he put on a growth spurt, gaining about four pounds and three inches in length. He also became a bully to Olive, and basically acted like a...frat boy. He was about 80 percent of the time a sweet, fun guy, and then 20 percent of the time an entitled, mean, bullying little shit monster who seems to think Olive and I are here to serve him. He is relentless in his pestering of her, and went from a guy who was always trying to get her attention in a "HEY LADY! LADY, HEY!" kind of way to pouncing on her and biting her neck. She could totally kick his ass, too, but she never does, and I feel so bad for her.

He cuddles up to me in my sleep in the mornings, but there have been times where, since he's a ginormous cat now and a bed hog, I try to move him over a bit and he'll start kicking furiously with his hind claws at my hand, and nipping me. He's never bitten through skin, though, and I think that it's probably likely that he'll do this again, despite the horrible reaction I had and that he was probably hurt by how hard I slammed him off of me. I just...I don't know how to get him to behave; Olive learned really fast that biting at hoomin was not a good idea, but Blues is just apparently incapable of learning lessons. I've picked him up a few times and tried to cuddle him but I just feel really wary of him now. I hate that. Those kitties are the only thing keeping me going and it's terrible to fear one of them.

He also never used to talk, now he sits in the kitchen and endlessly wails to be let out, which I won't do, and that seems to piss him off as well. Arg.

I had been making progress on my Idyll Challenge story. This set me so far back on my book that I haven't been able to work on it (and honestly, it hurt to type, so there was that). I doubt I can make the 22nd deadline.
gwyn: (painscary  impetus_icons)
The past 24 hours have been kind of surreal. Last night I was trying to get my girl kitty, Olive, in the house because she was kind of mad at me for giving her a flea treatment earlier. But I didn't want Blues to get out because it was late at night, and there are coyotes, and ever since Ginny came to live here he's been on a constant freaked out state of alert and it's hard to keep him inside. He had been attacking the door for a long time, meowing and just generally being a pain, so I picked him up and took him to the bedroom. I knew he wouldn't likely come out because of Ginny.

When I was getting ready for bed, he attacked my ankle from under the bed -- I think it's possible I stepped a tiny bit on his tail, but it was just my toes, and not much, neverthless, he really went after me and hissed and snarled. A few minutes later he was at the back door, and so I picked him up to hold on to him while I tried to get Ollie inside. He was just being hysterical, so I scruffed him, which never really works with him (it does on Olive) for some reason, but I hoped it might calm him down. He stopped, but then I switched arms, and was going to hoist him over my shoulder, the surefire way to get him to relax and calm down. Instead, he bit my left forearm.

Not a nip or a quick in and out bite, but he sank his fangs into my arm and then kept increasing the bite. It's amazing how much pounds per square inch those little jaws can create, and when I screamed he started whipping his head sideways, like he was trying to kill my arm. In my blind rage and pain, I couldn't get him off so I only remember kind of holding him up and throwing him across the kitchen and him landing on the floor and sliding across it a couple feet. Kind of like a Jaeger picking up a kaiju and hurling it down. He ran into the bedroom and I went to attempt to disinfect it.

Blood was just pouring out of the two right hand puncture wounds, and dribbling out of the lesser ones on the left. I washed it a good long time and doused it in alcohol and peroxide, but I've had cat bites before and I know about the Pasteurella bacteria in their mouths that lead to infection. Mostly it was just really, really painful. I had a lot of trouble sleeping because everything touching it hurt. Today I had to go return something at Nordstrom and when I was wandering around the store, I noticed that it had gone increasingly red under the Band-Aids, and I wasn't sure if that was because of the mildly allergic reaction I have to adhesives on bandages, or the bruising from his nasty little jaws clamping and clamping and sawing, or if it meant infection.

As I was driving across the lake, I figured by the time I got home and called the doc it would be too late to get in to see her, so I went to the awful urgent care place that's the only medical treatment facility in my area. I had to go there in June for a tetanus shot because I gashed my leg and I couldn't get in to the doctor quickly enough, and they were short staffed and incompetent and I was there for three freaking hours, but today they were a little better and the PA who saw me said "yeah, this is going to require the big guns." The swelling had increased dramatically and the stiffness in my hand was growing, which bothers me since the wound is in the middle of my forearm and not near my hand. The bacteria can destroy tendon tissue in a matter of days -- if you don't believe me, go find the article about a cat bite on Gizmodo.

They want me to keep it elevated as much as possible but that's really hard to do (especially since my workout on Monday was really, really intense on my arms, pecs, and shoulders, and then I had a really intense deep tissue massage in the evening!). I'm trying but, of course, I just got a huge book to proof and it's due in a really short time frame. I have a bad headache, but I'm really hoping it's just stress and not a fever from the bite. Ibuprofen just is not doing it for pain relief. I'm not sure what would, though, right now. And I have to get some acidophilous to combat the intestinal distress I'm gonna get from these super antibiotics the pills are the size of my freakin' thumb).

I'm so angry at Mr. Baby but I'm trying really hard to not let him see that. He used to be my sweet tender little boy until he was about three, and then he turned into this bullying little shit who is often incredibly sweet and loving and then just a complete monster. When I finally stanched the bleeding enough, I tried to get Ollie in again, and he came up to me on the dining table like he wanted me to pet him or something, and I just shoved him away with my hand, which unfortunately made him panic and he fell off the table, so that was awful and I felt horrible but I also just really hated him at that moment.

Then this morning the two of them were on either side of me in bed when I awoke, like most mornings, as if nothing had happened. Ollie will hiss and snarl and go after you a little if she's really pissed, like when I clip her claws, but she has never bitten me the way Blues has. I don't think I'd be alive today if it wasn't for my kitties, but sometimes I just...arg. Animals. Crazy foster dogs, violent cats...who knows what would happen if I ever fostered one of the rabbits we have in our care. I'd have to call Tim the Enchanter.
gwyn: (jayne hat sdwolfpup)
I'm kind of dreading tonight's Southland. After Ann Biderman left the series, it seems to have veered off into something I don't quite like as much, a "we're tough guys making a tough series for tough men to watch" or something. They've really kind of destroyed the audience-eye character, Ben Sherman, and have turned him into a complete and utter douchebag. And I admit, I'm biased, but I wanted Ben and Cooper to be together all the time, and I thought some kind of rapprochement with Cooper after the addiction storyline would have made for some really excellent drama, but no, now they seem to pretty much be done with each other for all eternity, and Ben's all judgey and shit.

But wow, Michael Cudlitz has been KNOCKING IT OUT OF THE PARK every fucking week these past few weeks. Every episode, he just leaves me with my jaw hanging open. Cut for discussion of episode specifics )
So my baby Blues has been a very expensive kitty lately. In his checkup last week, they found a cavity, which in kitties I guess is more of a bleeding hole in the tooth. Turned out there were two, both of the molars behind his bottom fangs, and they had to extract them in his dental cleaning -- and the plaque on his teeth was so bad it was like having a whole other tooth on top of them. He has always had bad teeth and gums, but it's getting ridiculous. And ridiculously expensive; it couldn't have come at a worse time as my credit card was really feeling the pinch with all the plans and deposits and such for my trip next month.

They gave him another one of those pain shots that last for three or four days like he got when his paw was infected; it's hysterical watching him roll around, completely stoned out of his mind, his pupils totally blown out, purring like a motorboat. I just hope he's not in much pain when it wears off.

Myself, I had the second round of dental work done yesterday, and aside from the bloody pulp in my mouth later, my jaw just mostly aches from trying to keep it open that long. I'm really tired of this. Especially coming at a time when I'm planning an expensive holiday.

Speaking of which, anyone on my flist in London? Want to meet up? I'll be there from the 14th to the 17th, then off to Cardiff for a few days, then back in London till the 22. I'd love to meet someone for drinks or lunch or something.
gwyn: (emma crime)
Hey you guys, the rescue group I volunteer with is up for voting on the 12th for a car in the Toyota 100 Cars for Good program. Motley Zoo, our group, is in desperate need of a dedicated vehicle for bringing animals to adoption events, ferrying them to vets and new families, not to mention to fosters like me. This is kind of a make or break event for them -- they may not be able to continue without another car, and no donations have been forthcoming for them (I'm going to see how it pans out, and if it doesn't work, see if there's something we can do to fund raise in a different way, but the person who runs it is feeling overwhelmed, I think).

Unfortunately, we are pitted against three other animal organizations -- the luck of the draw. There are five groups per day in need of a vehicle up for voting on the site, and while it's really hard to choose, you can vote in the Toyota program every single day if you want, to make sure many different groups get a car. I've been voting for a lot of groups, myself.

To vote for Motley Zoo,

- Go to www.100carsforgood.com (it is run through Facebook, sadly, so you'll need a FB account, but it's for a good cause!! really!!)

-Click the dog icon next to “Motley Zoo Animal Rescue” to expand our profile
-Click “VOTE” which pops up underneath the dog icon
-Click “CONFIRM” to make sure your vote counts!!

There's even a li'l video there, and some of my past foster dogs are in it! Winnie is the little black dog getting her paw prints on the banner (and, um, I'm in it, too but I'm not going to tell where). And if you can pass this along to other people, on LJ or Facebook or Tumblr or wherever, we will be eternally grateful.
gwyn: (pussypad kerry beary)
OMG, this video just made me cry and cry. I know it's because I have rescue dogs a lot, but I think I would cry regardless -- happy endings for suffering animals always makes me cry. Make sure you have Kleenex at hand.



Now I'm off to the vet with Mr. Blues -- he has a lump on his chin and I am very worried. He seems fine, but... lump. I don't know.
gwyn: (yuletide lights)
I had the worst night last night. There's a lot of activity in my neighborhood around Independence Day and New Year's Eve, lots of fireworks and people running around screaming and partying. I don't let the cats out much, although with Olive that's a tough one, because she won't go potty indoors. And it was subfreezing last night, down to around 24 in my 'hood. When I was working in the yard yesterday, Ollie kept me company, but Blues wasn't having any of it because it was too cold, even though they both usually love to "help" me garden by climbing trees and shrubs, chasing each other around, and pulling apart my piles.

But at some point late last night, I think when I took some garbage out, Blues slipped out behind me and I didn't even know he was gone until a couple hours later. The fireworks were going like crazy, it was insanely loud and obnoxious at midnight, and I searched everywhere for him to no avail. I finally had to give up around 3:00 because I was so cold I couldn't warm my hands up no matter what. (I had early stages of frostbite in some fingers and toes once back in my mountaineering days, and I've never really been the same since.) I went to bed in my clothes so I could keep getting up and calling for him. I was so afraid, it being so cold and so noisy and just dangerous.

By dawn, I had gotten to the point where I figured he was probably dead; he never stays out since the big runaway adventure. It didn't seem likely that he was trapped in someone's garage since it was so late at night. I figured he might have gotten spooked by fireworks, run in front of a car or something, and gotten hurt and crawled off somewhere. I must have fallen asleep finally around dawn because it was getting light, but I was awakened by my cell phone beeping low battery noises, so I went to charge it, and saw a blur by the door. I'm totally blind without my glasses, but I caught the movement, and sure enough there the little shit was, apparently none the worse for 24-degree wear. I have got to start paying more attention to my feet when I go out -- he frequently follows me out to the garage and then gets trapped in there and I don't find him for hours. He's peed and pooped on everything in there because he gets stuck for so long.

He seems to love to do this -- when he disappeared for four days two years ago, he'd snuck out behind me then, too. I never seem to have trouble when I willingly let him out. He trips me all the time too, winding around my feet when I don't see him coming. And that's not counting him nearly dying two days after I brought him home. He is totally gonna put me in an early grave. I kept thinking all night, my dad's on the slow road out and my cat's probably dead -- happy fuckin' new year. So of course as angry as I am, I'm still kissing and hugging him like whoa today.

Anyway, so story reveals went up today on Yuletide. I was bummed no one else wanted to play on the guess my story game, because it would have been fun to write another story for someone.

I wrote a Justified story called Lesser Angels, for [personal profile] shetiger. It's a view of Raylan from Tim Gutterson's point of view. I was really impressed by some of the Justified stories this year and sorry that the fandom hasn't gotten more love in all the recs. I was also interested to see that there were other stories from Tim's POV, and at least one other one that posits Tim as gay/bisexual, as mine did. I wonder if we're all going to get Jossed next season. I really enjoyed writing it, thinking about Raylan, and shetiger's request was really cool because it mirrored my own Justified request in so many ways it was bizarre. (And thanks so much to [personal profile] crickwooder for the great comments on beta.)
gwyn: (spock iconziconz)
A few weeks ago, I read this horrible, painful story about a woman who had watched her dog being electrocuted from stray voltage that leaked from a nearby power pole as they were walking. As upset as this story has made me, I feel compelled to pass it along to everyone I know -- I had never heard of this problem, and it horrifies me to find out that it has happened in many cities, and killed pets, kids, and adults alike. And that our utility companies have in many cases let this happen by hiring crappy subcontractors or not properly inspecting work.

If you walk anywhere, any time (even though some of these have happened in wet climates and after snow, when salt de-icing makes the current conduct more intensely), you should know about this. I can tell you that when I get a dog, I will be absolutely certain never to get near a metal plate. I don't know if there are any in my immediate area that could endanger Olive the wandering kitty, but I'm certainly going to find out.

Seattle City Light held a meeting last night about this, especially after one woman in my area told them about a light where her dog was acting weird, and it turned out to have exposed wiring. They are promising to inspect all 20,000 lights before May 1 -- but this is small comfort to someone who had to watch her beloved pet being killed. I have no idea what it will mean for places outside the city, and whether other cities will be dealing with this problem. It's more common in the east, unsurprisingly, with their worse weather and less car-reliant populations.

I think this is worth passing along, especially if you know of anyone with pets or little kids.
gwyn: (justified logo)
Been a long time since I posted. I keep thinking of things to say, and at night when I hit the pillow, I have these lengthy meta and review posts in my head, and they sound fantastic, but then the next day I have no desire to actually post anything.

In the past couple weeks I've been busy finalizing some freelance editing jobs, one of which was really difficult because the author couldn't be arsed to actually get anything done even remotely on time. I confess I just don't understand it -- getting a book published, for something you created and devoted your recent life to, is the dream come true of thousands of people. Yet he acted as though it was some kind of bee buzzing around his Pepsi can or something. But I also got to copyedit a friend's novel, which was awesome, and then I've been doing something I loathe, taking editing tests to try to get on with more publishers. I hate them so much. Thirty years in this field and I still have to take fucking tests. The two I've had this past week were heinous, too, and one I should have returned on Thursday, but I'm still not done -- I think I'm just going to finish up the editing part without a lot of work, and do a cursory whack at their two pages of notes and two pages of bibliography and send it back and tell them, essentially, that I have too much work at this time to take a 20 page editing test plus four pages of citations, so that should give them an idea of my abilities and they can take it or leave it. I'm just really tired of it all. I know I shouldn't be so cavalier about potential work, but...

I have another self-publishing author book coming up soon, anyways, and one of the tests people got back to me right away and want to add me to their freelancer pool. Hopefully something good will come of it, I don't know. They have the most convoluted system I've ever seen, but I guess if I can get consistent work, that will be good.

Because... I really do want to get a puppersons. That is my overarching desire right now. I have a feeler out about a cutie pie I saw online, but I haven't heard back... I didn't last time, either, so I worry that somehow these rescue folks aren't getting my mail. I know the kitties are going to go ballistic. But it's gotten so bad with both of them -- Olive won't even eat anywhere near him because he often bullies her away from her food -- that I don't know that adding a dog into the mix will be any worse. I don't know if cats go through terrible twos, but Blues sure has gotten worse and worse the past year. He's officially three now, but... sometimes he can be so awful I just don't know what to do with him. And I lose my temper with him really easily when he's bad, because he's just soooo bad and so recalcitrant about being good, which never helps.

Olive has been smelling like pee lately all the time, and I finally found out why yesterday -- at some point, she must have peed on her bed, which is an old egg-crate foam neck pillow I had someone make a cover for and the only thing she will deign to sleep on, and it's been sitting there moldering for I don't know how long now. When I took the fleece cover off to wash it, it was so revolting... and I threw it all out, but she's unhappy because it won't be for a few more days now till I get a replacement, and even longer before I get a new fleece cover. I discovered on Etsy that you can ask for custom things to be made! This is news to probably no one but me, but I was excited... and lots of people put bids in on the cover so I'm going to get one made for her.

Today I started working on a Justified vid. I'm so disgusted with myself -- I cannot figure out how to make the kind of effect I want to make, and I've googled and read and watched but still can't find anything like what I want to do. I know I'd have to use Motion, which is... really hard for me to understand, but if I could find anything like what I want to do, then I would at least have an idea of it. These are the times when I wish I had a pal with AfterEffects training or something. Curse my crappy personality that I have hardly any friends, let alone friends who know AfterEffects. ;-)

So it won't be quite what I want it to be, but I just want to make it anyway. I love looking at Raylan, and thinking about Raylan, and isn't that what makes the agony of vidding worth it? I'm working on an unusual POV for the vid, which I think will either be interesting or annoying to people, but I kind of like it... and it makes it a bit more of a challenge from a narrative perspective. Timothy Olyphant is so expressive, it's a joy to work with his acting. And also, he is teh sex.

And let's see, I guess that's it largely. I've just been really busy, having lots of trouble sleeping, trying to exercise more and lose some weight but not having any success, spending time with Dad, and planning some classes I'm going to teach this fall and next spring.

Oh, I finally bit the bullet and got a Blu-Ray player, but of course, I have no Blu-Ray discs to play. Got Avatar from Netflix though and watched it (man, that is a rant I will spare people, but boy, did I post a long diatribe about it in my head). I'm kind of pissed, though, in that both Panasonic and Netflix advertise being able to stream Netflix movies with this player, but nowhere do they tell you that if you want to use your wireless network, you have to buy a USB adaptor thingie that costs at the very minimum $70. Fuckers. I was so angry when I realized I had to buy that thing, so no Netflix streaming for a while until I either buckle to the pressure or get a different player. Guess that's why it was so much less at Costco! It's not really any skin off my nose to get the discs in the mail.

What are you up to these days?
gwyn: (bumble _hellsbelles)
I am much less woe is me today, thanks to 1) a bunch of my wonderful flist pointing out to me that when they had been on the pinch hit list, they ended up with wonderful stories and not to despair, and 2) picking up an extra for a pinch hit person and getting up with time to spare, because what better way is there to get over your own self-pity than by doing something for someone else?

I'm just letting this insane stress of trying to get so much stuff done before I head off to the east coast that I am more unstable than usual (saying a lot, as I think I'm one of the least stable people I've ever met). Stress is my natural state of being, enough so that the times I get sick most often are the times I am relaxed and stress-free. But this is far worse than normal and I need to chill, but OMG so much to do.

Today I was able to at last go pick up a present for dad, and I also found some wonderful, inexpensive pants so I can have a pair of nice pants to bring on the trip. Yay.

Also I have pics of cat torment. I borrowed the angel wings [livejournal.com profile] feochadn got for her cat on Halloween, and put them on Blues. I know better than to even try to put them on miss grumpypants Olive. OMG, he was so angry. But he looked adorable and the more he hated me, the funnier it was. Poor kitties.

Poor little angel baby Blues )

Poor pores

Oct. 28th, 2009 11:54 am
gwyn: (box o kittens rahirah)
Had to take Orive to the vet today (that's her Engrish name) because she's had these black scabs and patchy skin by her mouth the past couple days. I thought it might be feline acne or miliary dermatitis; turns out it's just the acne, which is good, but we don't know why. The only plastic dish she comes in contact with (that I know of, since she's a scam artist who has managed to get at least one person to feed her) is the water fountain, but we've had that for a couple years and no problems, so both the vet and I think it's probably flea related. After a couple of flea-free years, I found some on her the other day, but it's impossible to control them with flea combing on her because she is so disagreeable about grooming from me. I really hate being bitten and scratched, and it always comes down to a fight with her.

Sometimes it's hard for me to remember when she was such a sweet, mellow, agreeable kitty. Olive has never liked being picked up and cuddled, but she was more amenable before Blues came. I have to give her some antibiotic ointment for the chin spots, which will be... interesting. A lot of times, the only way I can clip her claws is when she's asleep. By the time she's fully awake and starting to hiss and snarl, I've gotten at least four toes done.

I feel sorry for kitties about the acne or dermatitis thing. It doesn't seem to bother them in the least, but it looks painful and they get little blood spots if you wash or pull off the black scabby things. And then they get their chins shaved so they look even sillier. It's so undignified. It gets harder and harder to trick her into letting me catch her so I can put her in the cat carrier. I don't know what I'll be able to do next time -- I know cream won't work, because I did that this morning, and so it will never work again. She's too clever by half, and far too cranky.

But here, have a kitty pic or three.
kittehs )

B-day!

Sep. 14th, 2009 11:14 am
gwyn: (wes squee jidabug)
Happy birthdays to both [livejournal.com profile] mlyn and [livejournal.com profile] bientot here in Seattle, and to [livejournal.com profile] ann1962!! Wow, kind of an auspicious day, no? I hope you have a great day, and that the coming year brings you all the things you want.

_________

Last night I watched some of the things that have sat on my tifaux for a really long time, including a one-woman monologue by Julia Sweeney (from Saturday Night Live, she created a number of memorable characters, especially Pat) called God Said, Ha! It's about her moving back to LA and then caring for her brother through his treatment for lymphoma, and her parents move in with her, and then she develops a rare kind of cervical cancer, all of this after a divorce.

I really admire people who can talk about tragic things with humor, that was always something I tried to do when both Mom and sis_r were sick. My mom wasn't exactly famous for her sense of humor, and mine is pretty black, but sis_r, I think, often appreciated my bitter sarcasm and bleak jokes because they were things she wanted to say but couldn't, because she tried so hard to keep up that positive, brave face. I think I got to be her outlet sometimes, although she used to tell me I had to be her rock, which I think both of us knew was pretty funny because I was never anybody's rock.

Anyway, at one point during this terrible ordeal, one of her cats moves in with a neighbor. I laughed and laughed. I couldn't have picked a better movie to watch. At one point she details horrible thing after horrible thing and ends up having to go to the grocery store to get cat food, and talks about how it's not a good sign when the single lady is in the checkout line with 15 cans of cat food in the middle of the night. Ah ha ha ha.

I would highly recommend this for just about anyone, but if you're the kind of person who can appreciate black humor in the face of overwhelming emotional problems, you should totally watch this. It's really kind of cathartic, I felt, and she does such a perfect impression of clueless parents that anyone can relate to the story, even if they've never had a family member get sick before.

So, speaking of cats who find themselves new homes, Olive has been pretty agreeable about following me home when I go up and get her from Sandy's house (the neighbor whose house she decided should be her new home). She talks to me like I just stopped by for a kaffee klatch or something. But then she runs right back out first chance she gets and legs it up to Sandy's. Yesterday, though, much to my surprise, she came in for food while my friend Keith was visiting (he was only here for a few hours, but I took him up to the cool new bar here and bought him a birthday drink). Then after he left, I brought her home for dinner, but she zipped back out before I could stop her, then came back a few hours later for a nap on her bed, then ran back out when I took out the garbage, and finally came home around 1, when I was going out to go look for her, there she was waiting to come in!

I guess that means the no extra food and water thing is working. I think she still wants to be up in Sandy's yard or porch, since there aren't any other hated kitties there, but she seems willing to at least come home once in a while for food. We have to work on a lot of other stuff, though. It's obvious she hates being here, but... for now, I just hope she stays with Sandy and doesn't try to find another person who'll take pity on her.
gwyn: (emma crime)
I guess you know you're not a very likable or desirable person to be around when your own cats don't even want to live with you anymore. I mean, I know, thanks to plenty of people telling me that, and being clear what they think my faults are, but wow, when your cats go looking for another home of their own accord, it must be bad.

I've had this sneaking suspicion Olive found another home for a few weeks now -- she has been gone for increasingly long times, to the point where she doesn't even come home at night and is gone the entire day. She doesn't come home for food or treats, and I have to lure her in if I see her and that doesn't even work much of the time. She hates Blues SO MUCH. And by extension, has started hating me, too. She growls and huffs and puffs when I touch her or pet her or try to be friendly. She'll only play with me for a short time. She often won't sleep on me anymore. She tries to knock out the window screens to get out, and hisses, snarls, and growls when Blues is in the other room, if she merely hears him walking around.

And I've been looking for her for two days and all last night, and this afternoon a woman knocked on my door and said that some of the neighbors thought I might be her owner, and she described Olive to me. I said, yeah, that's her, and told her that I'd been afraid she had found another home where someone was feeding her and offering her Blues-free affection. She said, yes, that's me! She commented on how friendly and sweet Ollie is, and I mentioned she's also very bold and fearless, and she said that Ollie had just come right into her house. But she has a skittish, very fear-aggressive cat so didn't want to just bring her in. Olive slept on her porch, and was there curled up at the door in the mornings, and there at night, so she was feeding her.

She took my card and said she'd call when she next saw Olive, and in the meantime, while she was off running errands, I went over to her house and there was Ollie, who had obviously ignored me when I'd come by about an hour earlier on my walk, calling for her. This time the brat came out and let me bring her home, although she stopped purring and started snarling and growling when we got in the yard. Now she's alternately sleeping and glaring at me with her golden eyes, hissing and puffing (I started calling her Miss Hufflepuff a while ago) and growling at Blues, just being generally disagreeable and yet still cute as the dickens.

I don't know what to do about her. She's obviously incredibly unhappy here, with Blues, with me, with the bully cats who invade her backyard sanctuary. So she's gone to find another home. And I think even if the neighbor stops feeding her, she'll just go find someone else to do it. She is very focused and bold. And grouchy.

I've become addicted to the Dog Whisperer lately, and I'm even trying to do some of Cesar's tricks -- changing my energy to calm assertive, breaking her attention when she gets into one of her growling frenzies. But Blues is still her tormenter and ignores my energy, ignores most of my attempts to get him to behave. It's impossible to modify behavior, though, when they freaking run away. Today when I went looking for Ollie, Blues bolted out of the house. He's been remarkably good about not straying since the big My Little Runaway episode of last year, but today he seemed to vanish, and didn't come back, didn't eat his breakfast, anything. I finally got him back in about an hour or so after Ollie came home, and it's been snarls and growls and running around and fighting since, when they're not glaring at me or begging to go outside.

I mean, how bad a person do you have to be that your cat, who you love with all your heart and spoil rotten and saved from death row, wants to go live on someone else's porch? Depressing, I tell you. This does not help how lowdown and unloved I feel lately.

I'm working on taking this copyediting test for a fiction publisher. I'm really stuck on it and I need to finish and get it back asap, but it's really badly written but they want mechanical stuff from CEs, not really developmental or substantive stuff. I'm spending too much time analyzing every single sentence because I don't know if it's not enough, too much, the wrong thing, what. It needs much more than a copyedit, so it's such a struggle to figure out what's right. I really would like to do work for them even though it pays next to nothing (really, it's almost like volunteering!), just because of what they publish, but the pressure of what's right on this test makes it very hard to do. I hate tests, and I really don't believe in them, but it's the nature of this crappy field. I love the work of editing, but as a business it kinda sucks.

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