Tag Archives: pets

Sharing My World 28

dryden charles street
This used to be my world. A basement apartment in the early seventies complete with wood panelling and posters. And bare feet. And long hair. And strange things dangling from the green tulip pole lamp.

 

Share Your World 2015 Weeks 17, 18 and 19

Lately, for whatever reasons, I have seriously neglected to share my world.  So today I will share the heck out of it by answering a whopping lucky thirteen questions.  I will try to be brief, but when has that ever happened.

What type of pets do you have or want? Or do you not want pets?

We always had dogs and cats when I was growing up on the farm but I preferred the company of cats. They slobbered less.  The dogs loved my sister, not me.  My husband had a black lab, and then we had two cats for close to 20 years.  After that I killed a Japanese Fighting fish.  It was no match for me.  I like other people’s dogs and cats, but I’m not a great animal care giver, so I don’t think we will have any more pets in our lives.  It’s a big enough challenge looking after each other.

What was or is your favorite cartoon?

I really kind of hate the cartoons we used to watch on tv.  Although maybe hate is too strong a word.  But they always did stress me right out.  Walking off cliffs, getting blown up, having things happen to you that should result in fatal head injuries.  People and animals being insanely rude to each other.  How is any of that funny?

When you’re alone at home, do you wear shoes, socks, slippers, or go barefoot?

Bare feet are the happiest feet.  Except when you get dry, rough, cracked heels.  Or drop heavy pieces of furniture on them.  I still think the risks are worth it.

Are you a traveler or a homebody?

I am the biggest homebody that ever lived.  And yet I have gone places.  The things we do to ourselves.

What is your most favorite smell/scent?

Coffee brewing while bacon sizzles in the pan.  Tomato plants.  Clean laundry fresh off the clothes line.  The sweet smell of new-mown grass.  Whatever that smell is after it rains.  That one is hard to beat.

Do you prefer long hair or short hair for yourself?

My mom gave me dutch boy haircuts until I begged her to let me grow my hair long enough for a pony tail.  Then I chopped it all off super short, but grew it back long and straight in time for fitting in to the long-haired hippy sixties.  W said when he met me my hair was down around the hem of my mini skirt.  That’s an exaggeration.  Although those skirts were pretty damned short.   I loved my long hair, but there comes a point in your life when all it does is drag your face down with it.  So now it’s short again, and likely to remain that way as long as there are scissors in my bathroom.

Do you plan out things usually or do you do them more spontaneous (for example if you are visiting a big city you don’t know?)

I go along with whatever someone else has planned.  That way I can blame other people when I don’t have any fun.

What is your favorite outdoor activity?

Seriously?  Sitting in a lawn chair with my sunglasses on and my eyes closed.

Would you prefer a one floor house or multiple levels?

Multiple levels are ideal when you’re young enough to run up and down all the stair cases without collapsing in a wheezing heap of broken bones.  When we moved in to this house, W took the hand railing off the basement stairs to make it easier to move furniture down there.  He never got around to putting it back, although I have nagged him about it on and off for years.  Late this fall he is going to have hip replacement surgery, and his beloved tv is down those basement stairs.  Stay tuned for further developments.

If you have a TV, would you prefer the TV in the living room or another room?

Well, speak of the devil.  I like it downstairs where I can’t see or hear it.  Especially when W has the remote control.  But I spend a ridiculous amount of time watching Netflix and other stuff on my I-Pad.  The difference is not having to wear my glasses to read the subtitles, and not having to listen to commercials.  Plus watching any stupid thing I please.

When you leave a room, do you turn the lights off behind you or keep the lights on throughout your house most of the time? Explain your answer.

This is turning into a ‘complain about W’ post and he’s not even here to defend himself.  I turn lights on and he turns them off, so I have to turn them on again.  I especially like to leave the lights on at the back door where the railing-less steps go down to the basement.  If I’m going to fall down there and kill myself I’d like someone to be able to see the results.  But he’s away now, so lights are on in all the normally low-light places.  They will remain on until he comes home.  Or the bulbs burn out, whichever comes first.

What’s your favorite room in your home?

I like all the rooms in my house, but spend most of my time in or around the part of the living/dining room that’s been morphed into a little art studio.  I used to spend a lot of time in the bedroom at my computer, but found myself struggling to do things in the living room on my I-Pad instead, even though it took twice as long.  Then I turned my computer desk away from the wall so that it faces the window.  Now I like it here again.  But not as much as where the art is.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I’m grateful that W finally got everything packed up and ready to go and should be reaching his destination in North Western Ontario sometime today.  I am grateful that I can leave all the lights on now, day and night, and cook things for myself that would cause him great anxiety if he thought I wanted him to eat them.  I’m only looking forward to doing my own shopping because I can now buy turnips without being harassed.

Well!  That’s over a thousand sharing words.  What’s new in your world?  Are you wearing shoes?  Be careful on those stairs.

share-your-world2

Just Jazzy 131

“You can say any fool thing to a dog and the dog will just give you this look that says, ‘My GOSH, you’re RIGHT! I NEVER would’ve thought of that!”  
―     Dave Barry

Of course you should accept your dogs devotion and admiration as conclusive proof that you are amazing.  Dogs are seldom wrong about such things.
Of course you should accept your dogs love and admiration as conclusive proof that you are simply amazing. Dogs are seldom wrong about such things.

The True Cost of Living While Insuring Yourself to Death

Big House
Big House (Photo credit: Stephen Downes)

Prompts for the PromptlessTrue Cost is a term for the often-overlooked, comprehensive expense of something, including the time-related and emotional costs.

(Example:  You can purchase a cat for money.  Let’s say $100.  That’s the basic cost.  The True Cost of the cat, though, is in the litter box, food bowl, cat carrier, food, vet bills, litter, the time spent on the cat, shirts that are torn by tiny kitten claws, the worry you experience when the cat is ill, and the grieving if the cat passes away before you.)

You can try to calculate the true cost of things, but I’m betting once you get started you’ll wish you hadn’t bothered.  I thought for this prompt it might be interesting to add up all the insurance premiums we’ve paid over the years.  Because, let’s face it, we like to insure ourselves and everything around us against every possible calamity imaginable.   There is home insurance, insurance for household contents, fire, theft, auto, health, illness, mortgage, accident, travel, property, professional and personal liability, LIFE….and of course alien abduction.  That last one we were never offered and so we don’t have it.  Now that I’ve admitted to being lax about purchasing that particular insurance, no doubt the aliens will be around later tonight to take us away without any fear of being sued.

Just making this list of all the types of insurance was traumatic enough, never mind calculating actual dollar amounts.  No point in making myself suicidal.

I also considered discussing the true cost of purchasing your own house.  We own a home which is mortgage free.  I always thought it would give me such a wonderful feeling of pride and contentment to be able to say that.  Now I realize the house actually owns us.  We are its caretakers.  It has NEEDS.  Once the mortgage is paid, the house feels free to start falling apart.  Appliances break down.  Floor coverings wear out.  Paint peels.  Furnaces die of old age.  Windows need replacing.

Being done with mortgage payments simply means there’s some extra cash left at the end of the month to put towards maintenance and upkeep and renovations.  Or in other words, keeping the damned place from falling down around you while you sleep.

I’m no accountant, but I think the cost of owning your own home is probably equal to your entire monthly take home pay plus about 15%.  You can own it free and clear for about five minutes.  Then you’ll have to dish out more money to keep it nice.

So, here’s my advice to all you people out there who are obsessed with knowing the true cost of something.  Stop worrying about it.  If you want something enough, (like pets or kids or ridiculously huge amounts of life insurance),  ultimately the true cost is just a number.  You will work hard to make your dreams happen, you will do whatever you have to do, even if it all seems at times to be hopelessly out of reach.  If its important enough to you, you will find a way.  And true cost be damned, you will be happy you did.

Questionable Answers to Unanswerable Questions

Of course no question is unanswerable because you can always say I don’t know.  Or answer it with another question, such as “why in the world would you need to know that?”   I’ve also found ‘get away from me you weirdo’ can get you off the hook at least temporarily, giving you some time to think up a more intelligent response.

There are so many plinky prompts I’ve missed!  Where the hell have I been and what have I been thinking, letting them all gang up on me like this?  I’m going to pretend that there are people out there just dieing to know what I think about random things.  So here are my answers.  Some of them considerably less well thought out than others.

What’s your favourite place to grab a cup of coffee?  That would be in my kitchen, in my housecoat, in a state of semi-consciousness.  Next favourite – McDonalds.  Their coffee here is that good.

What was the last thing you got really excited about? I tend not to be a very excitable person.  Or exciting either if you want to get all personal.  Getting ready to go on a trip with my sister to Scotland was pretty thrilling.  That was five years ago.  I’m kind of seriously overdue for hysteria of some sort or other.

Make a list of things you’ve accomplished so far this year. I have lived through yet another dreaded month of January without going mad.  I have managed to stay gainfully employed.  I have used up every last millisecond of my holidays until mid September.  I’ve reconnected with my brother.  Visited family.  Got rid of a closet door.  Eaten enough salad to choke a very large rabbit.

Have you ever written your own music or song lyrics?  Sort of, but not really.  I have been known to make up my own lyrics for tunes that are already out there.  I’m the only person I know who can sing along to instrumentals.

What famous monument do you hope to see one day? The Eiffel Tower, at night, by elevator, with all of Paris at my feet.  But if I never get there, that’s okay too.  Probably couldn’t stand the excitement anyway.

Do you have a favourite work of art?   No.  All works created by skill and imagination are beautiful to someone.  Even if it’s simply a mom in love with her childs crayon scribbles.  There’s no such thing as the best beautiful thing.

Pick a new pet to take home for free.  I think I’m done with pets for this lifetime.  It’s hard enough to tend to the care and feeding and grooming of me.  I’ll just enjoy other peoples pets and go home to my own lint roller when the day is done.

How many books do you read each year?  Since I got my Kindle, I sometimes average one a week.  So over fifty would be a reasonable estimate.  Because I still buy real books too.  I don’t really know.  I’m too busy reading to add them all up.

If you were going to open a shop, what would you sell?  Coffee beans, cups, creams, pots, filters, cakes, grinders, makers and machines and presses, and many different types of the brewed stuff.  Perhaps I should just go work for Starbucks.

When was the last time you visited a library?  My library card expired a decade ago.  I honestly don’t remember.

Make a list of all the countries you have visited.  It’s a short list.  U.S. and U.K.

Have you ever tried to grow your own fruits and vegetables?  I grow tomatoes every summer.  They flourish and thrive in spite of me.

What’s the coolest airport you’ve been in?  Can’t even imagine what would make an airport cool.  It’s a necessary evil on the way to somewhere else.

Should coffee shops limit the amount of time that lap top users can occupy tables?  Yes.  No longer than 48 hours at a time seems reasonable to me.

What’s your favourite foreign film?  I love all foreign films as long as they have subtitles.  I like subtitles for films in English too.  Actors mumble.  It’s SO annoying.  Especially for the people I’m watching the film with when I’m constantly asking ‘what did he say??’

Should the U.S. get rid of the penny?  Yes, please.  Canada is phasing it out and American pennies showing up in our country would just piss us off.

Would you ever visit a psychic or palm reader?  Been there, done that.  Will live to be 93.

Do you ever purchase lottery tickets?  No.  W does.  If he wins I’m hoping he’ll share.

Have you ever had something stolen from you?  My prescription sunglasses.  I hope the person who took them goes cross-eyed with migraines.

Do you ever listen to the radio anymore?  Well, funny you should ask.  Since W got satelite radio I’ve been listening to it non-stop.  He has found a station he likes that plays about 90% Carole King 24/7 and that’s what we’ve had playing for two days straight.  I have tried to convince him to look for other stations because to me that seems to be the whole point of having a satelite working for you. I read the list.  I made suggestions.  But Carole King it is. He will be taking it with him soon to the island and I hope he and Carole King have a very nice summer together.

Do you need coffee to wake up in the morning?  Not really, but if I don’t have any at all I’ll never last through an entire afternoon without a nap.

What type of hat suits your personality?  A tall black pointy one with a wide brim and a silver buckle and lots of stars.

My Super-Pet

I’m thinking there could be a market out there for Giant Guard Squirrels.

I’d start with some Newfoundland dog traits – big and black and a constant drooler, but excellent with children. (I have grandchildren, and I would not like to make them afraid to visit because of grandmas monster pet.)

Then I’d add the fierce independence of a cat, which does not need a human to entertain or walk it, and is too lazy to ever be serious about running away.

Finally, the quick, agile and dextrous traits of a squirrel. They are great climbers and happy to live in trees. Plus they like to gather and hide things, so if you put a big garbage bin close by, it should be easy enough to train them to clean up after themselves.

Then I’d need to build a treehouse and equip it with a huge cat bed. The tree itself would need to bear giant nut-like fruit year round; the nuts should smell like fish and taste like dog treats. I’m sure there are scientists out there with time on their hands who could come up with something.

This incredible super pet would be able to growl, drool, hiss and spit, and fire enormous nuts at intruders and solicitors. It would never want to come into the house to shed on the furniture or chew on your best shoes.

The only people it would allow on the property would be children selling those fund-raiser things for their schools or their sports teams. I have a soft spot for them. When my kids were supposed to do that I would just write a cheque for the entire box rather than have them go from door to door annoying the neighbors and then we would live on chocolate covered almonds for a month. There are worse hardships.

As long as this pet doesn’t ATTRACT kids. That’s a potential problem I suppose, until more families on the block catch on to the advantages of owning their very own Giant Guard Squirrel. Best pet EVER.

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I’m Avoiding….

Guilt trips. They’re such an emotionally draining waste of time. I accept my own blameworthiness and lapses in this life and from now on I will allow myself two minutes max of sorrowful remorse per transgression. Then I will just get on with living my life and screwing up and saying things like Oooops and Sorry where required.

I’ve also been avoiding cleaning the fish tank. Such a boring and annoying task. Sorry Phinaeus. People with avoidance personality disorder probably should not be allowed in pet stores.

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