Friday, April 30, 2010

Dogs and Cats

I've sent my dog Tula for a weekend getaway with her grandmother at the family cottage.  She will be delighted to play in the woods, run along the rocky shore, and certainly to take in the spoiling that will happen thanks to good ol' Grammy.  Grandmothers are like that.  I miss mine, but not because of the spoiling....honest.

This turn of events which didn't come into being until this morning is a welcome opportunity for me to spend time "home alone" with my princess cat.  Lovingly referred to as "Princess P" with a drawn out emphasis on the "P" initial accompanied by a high to low sliding of it.  She knows one is talking about her when she hears this siren like sound.

I've always, always been a dog person.  I even have a favored breed; Labrador Retriever-especially the black ones.  But after my dear black lab passed last spring leaving me with the above pictured yellow mix, I decided to add a cat to my family.  My family doesn't "do" cats so they're still a smidge shocked.  "What do you want a cat for?" were my father's exact words.

"You!? You have a cat?!!" my friend exclaimed and laughed.  Why is this such a surprise?  Why am I considered a "dog person", not a "cat person" based on my looks and habits? I never said anything nasty about cats.  How come I don't fit the cat person profile?

Here's what I knew about cats when I arrived at the local animal shelter in January.  Nothing, nada, zilch.  Breed, eyes, habits, litter boxes, clues.  I finally sat in one of the "cat rooms" with a dozen or more cats roaming 'round and thought let a cat choose me.  I wanted a cat who would sit with me while I watched TV.  Huge request needs.  I figured if a cat came and sat on my lap, they'd pass the test. Princess P did just that.  Stretching out of her basket she strolled over and lept into my lap and started purring.  I waited 15 minutes and knew this is the cat for me.

Princess P has become such a great companion.  Best $59 I've spent in a long time. After hibernating for the first 4 or 5 days under the couch, she emerged, told off the dog with a hiss, and joined the family.  I have become a cat person.  Princess P is an affectionate companion who does watch TV with me.  She is eager for lap sitting most anytime.  If I ask her questions, she vocalizes as if answering, though I've found it best to stick to "yes" or "no" questions.  She wishes to sleep on my bed at night and follows me from room to room, unless she's sleeping in the sun.

I still have some things to learn though. What is it about closets and cupboards that is so interesting?  Clothes closets, broom closets, linen closets, and any of the kitchen cabinets.....any door that opens attracts her feline attention.  She has spent several hours alone in closets when I didn't know she'd wandered inside.  She has taught herself to open the lower cabinets, and then gets trapped inside amongst the stack of sauce and saute pans.  What is this about?

Food:  She eats a little here, a little there.  Sometimes the whole dish, sometimes very little; this is not dog "wolf it down in less than 1 minute" behavior.  And whiskers....they are incredibly ticklish along one's cheek at 2:45 a.m.  Sandpaper tongue bonus with that too.

Overall I'm looking forward to spoiling my little girl for a couple days without the hound around.  Plenty of attention for her royalness without having to leave her while the dog and I take our walks.  Planning to make my lap available as much as possible and be rewarded with the delicate rumble of her purr.  Should be great....though it's hard to post with 5 1/2 pounds of fur and purr on your lap. 

On Sneezing

"I would never want to live with or marry someone who didn't say "bless you" after I sneezed." 
I read that once in a magazine story, probably one of my grandmother's Good Housekeeping that she subscribed to for years....despite the dust and clutter around her house.  This comment has stayed with me for years and years.  I think of it sometimes when someone sneezes and I say "bless you" to them.  Do they think it polite?  Unnecessary?  Good upbringing?  Pleasing? Silly?

Gott segne dich is the German version of God bless you; it sounds harsh and impersonal so I don't say that.  I rarely say "God bless you", as I'm not much of a church go-er, it might seem, insincere or misplaced in my vocabulary norm.  But this woman's comment about being ignored when you sneeze and no one blessing if a person nearby that failed to strike common courtesy must not truly care for her well-being or be worthy of loving.  I wonder.   Wondering is a bad habit of mine.

I have at times felt guilty about not blessing someones sneeze, based solely on this magazine story.  As a child  my father did not bless upon my sneeze, but instead went with the "get any on ya?" phrase, which perhaps was funny once, or maybe even twice, but in no way felt as if blessings had been bestowed.  Does this speak to his love or his upbringing or his sense of humor or something else?

My brother suffered from allergies and would sneeze numerous times when waking in the morning.  At times I would count them, out loud, but was reprimanded by his ungrateful stare.  I understood and realized his agony.  How many times are you obligated to bless someone when they are a multiple sneezer?  Do you bless the first and let the others go?  Do you bless the first and then the last in the long string?  Do you impart a new phrase such as "many blessings to you" when they finish?  It's touch and go...a case by case basis I suppose.

Maybe my blessing is I'm not much of a sneezer.  The occasional cold will bring the beasts on, or a tickle of allergies in spring or fall, but it is not normally part of my day.  This may mean I don't need to be blessed.  I must say though I think of this phrase when in close proximity to a friend and they don't bless my sneeze.  It may be best to evaluate the friendship then and there.  But I don't......

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Wednesday is Prince spaghetti day.  At least that's what the ad said when I was a kid.  I wonder why that phrase stuck....good marketing, I guess.  That and that obnoxious ad for "more pork sausages Mom, please?"  I would have liked to smack that whiney kid.

Wednesday is hump day.....unless you're a camel.  Then everyday is hump day.

Wednesday's child is full of woe.  Bummer.  Glad I was born on Monday-I'm fair of face which is way better than being full of woe.  Though at times this fair face is full of woe.

Wednesday morning at 5 o'clock as the day begins...such a mournful song.  The melody itself is sad matched by the lyrics of longing.

Wednesday is the best day of the week to buy a car.  Hmmmm.  My driver's ed teacher told my class that.  I'm likely the only one who remembers this insignificant detail.  He said on Thursday or Friday the sales person might leave early for the weekend.  On Monday and Tuesday they may be extending their weekend.  And apparently the "weekend" sales force is desperate.  Who the hell cares what day of the week you buy a car?  I'm thinking if you have enough money to buy a car, everyday must be pretty good.  I need a new car, but alas no dinero.

Wednesday.  There it is.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Drab and Dreary

Dang it's drab and dreary today.  Dark circles drawn 'round my eyes detail a night of dreams; demented, dreadful dreams of danger and remorse. The dreariness drains my energy, creating a  day of daze;  one where I am scarcely dignified for discussing anything of depth or dimension with anyone.  I am definitely not a diva.  I am the anti-diva, dad-gum-it.  Does this description draw a design of my daily destiny?  Damn.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Boat

It's nearly time for boating again.  There's no place finer to be on a hot sunny day than bouncing along in the bow, wind in your face and hair, seeing the Maine coast from the other side.

Ice cream taste better in a boat.  Troubles lessen in a boat.  Time stretches in a boat.  The ocean's many colors seem richer in a boat.
You can see your childhood in a boat.

I grew up around boats, on the water, as a 2nd mate in the family tier.  It is natural to find forgotten memories when you again are cruising the day away.

It's nearly time for boating again.  Bring it on.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Velvet Shoes

In velvet shoes just before dawn
My love comes to my downy rest.
Stealingly; a silent silhouette
Nestles in the bare corners of my left.

Gently wrapping delicate arms,
As ribbon ‘round my neck.
Her mouth finds salt from my sleep.
My fingers she tastes, craving my caress.

In satisfaction
I feel her back arch and rise.
Her many wondrous curves,
Silky to my touch.

As first light eases
I see her eyes, dreamy with adoration.
I hear her rhythmic sighs
And sense the morning bliss.

I shift; she lies upon me.
The rumble of her wee voice
Vibrates in my heart.
Two cadences one.

Her warmth and tenderness, my waking gift.
My love asks little yet answers large.
She teases me with whiskers white.
Five pounds of sweet in dappled fur.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Birthday Blessings

Happy Birthday Brother

45 years ago my life took a sharp turn with the arrival of one screaming baby boy.  The story goes that after 2 1/2 weeks I inquired of my parents "How long is he going to stay here anyway?"  I didn't get it.

Brothers are funny things.  At once dear and aggravating, thoughtful and thoughtless, best friend and foe du jour, greatest asset and greatest thorn in one's side....but always loved.

I suppose there's no one I could turn to who I could count upon more, that is as long as he's not busy chasing his kids, planting a garden, replacing a door, or taking stuff to the recycle station.

Love you lots my dear brother.....happiest of birthdays and many, many more.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Half hour before Survivor. Haven't watched for several seasons, but have again been sucked in by Heros vs. Villians. I miss Boston Rob.

Wonder if life is rather like Survivor. We all get spoken to by the tribe from time to time and booted off. Too bad it isn't to Ponderosa....but rather to shameland to figure out how not to screw it up so badly next time.
I think too, sometimes we purposely fail, hold back, don't put our best foot forward and vote ourselves out of situations when we need a fresh start. That makes sense.

Looking forward to seeing who goes home tonight and am expecting the inevitable merge.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


What is a deaf musician? Tortured. I suppose I'm somewhat lucky. I can hear some things. Sometimes I can even hear a beautiful melody if it's played on a solo instrument, like an oboe or flute. Does that still allow me the right to bitch and complain? I think so.
Often music is all distorted, a collage of sounds that makes no logical sense. I remember learning that Mozart's music was theoretically and mathematically perfect...and yet it invokes such emotion. What I hear is the opposite. Shifting keys, numerous unrelated pitches, something familiar that then goes awry. My music is now in black and white rather than vivid color and it strikes no emotion. Blah, no mood enhancement, no sadness, no feeling....just blah.
Why would God want a musician to live with this? I keep thinking it's just a test. "This is only a test....for the next 60 seconds...." but the test has gone on 10 years now and still has not come to completion. What does one do to move the process along?
The painting the scream is the best visual representation of how I feel. Edvard Munch. With a name like that, no wonder he thought of the scream.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Playin' Hooky

Wouldn't it be so sweet to not work for a day? The phone wouldn't ring, the demands wouldn't come, you could just be. It sounds marvelous.
I remember the last day of school when I was finishing 3rd grade. It was only a 1/2 day. When I got home I sat on the grassy hill in the front yard in shorts and barefeet under a blue sky. I don't think I've ever felt so free and carefree again in my whole life.
Being carefree is a difficult state to be in. Consumed by responsibilities and the never ending list of "shoulds" finding a moment to appreciate a light breeze, a blue sky, the feel of grass between your toes, and a sense of stillness....this rarely happens. I should like it, if I could make it happen now and then.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Checkin' my Pooh

Many happy returns of the day, so says Pooh. How the hell did Pooh get so smart? A genius in yellow fur and red shirt.

I frankly have seen myself as Tigger for years and years, bouncing around clueless, but lately my moods are frequenting Eeyore. Mopey, droopy, sad old Eeyore.

Writing is more fun than doing what I'm supposed to be doing so we'll post and see.