Archive for March, 2007

Deja Vu All Over Again

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

…or Back to School Semester Three. It seems that the last time I updated this site I was entering exam season. Which then flowed into mid-term season, which dovetailed into term paper and big-honkin’ report season, followed by the Finals Crunch, which took place the week before Christmas. By the time the New Year got here, I was preparing for the Spring semester. I didn’t get around to updating, but I did pull a 4.0 for the semester. Go me!

So what’s been going on here since then? Oh, just about everything. Here’s a few highlights, in no particular order:

New Kid in the House
We have a new cat, bringing the total animal occupant load here to three cats and two dogs. We’ve decided this is about two cats and one dog too many, but we’re stuck. We were walking in the park one day last fall when we saw this black kitten (guessing about five months old?) come walking up, squeaking at us. I put down my hand to see if she was friendly, and she reared up on her back legs and shoved her nose through my hand to get petted. I’d call that friendly. She was purring her head off and let me pick her up.

Our neighborhood backs up to a canyon full of coyotes, bobcats, eagles, and all sorts of other predatory things, so stray cats aren’t seen around here too much. Even pets aren’t seen out much, because they just don’t last. Between the canyon and the busy (although only in a residential way) street the park sits on, we couldn’t just walk away and leave the little sweetie there. I carried her around while we knocked on doors trying to find out if anyone knew where she lived, or was missing a cat. No dice. We took her home and quarantined her from our mangy mutts, since we knew not from whence she had come.


I put up fliers around the ‘hood, covering the main intersections in and out of the development. We called the local pound and put in a “found” report, placed a “found” ad in the paper, and listed her on Craigslist. She was such a sweet kitty, I couldn’t believe that someone wasn’t missing her. But no on did. We only got a few calls from the ads, and none were even close to her age or description. We tried to find a home for her, but the adoption agencies we trust were swamped, and we couldn’t find a place where her sweet demeanor would be appreciated, so we ended up keeping her.

It's a Maggie!
It’s a Maggie!

We started out calling her “fuzzball”, because we had to call her something. But one day I looked at her and decided she was a Maggie. So Maggie it is. Or Magpie, Little Maggie May I, Maggie May, or Little Maggie Mayhem. Occasionally she’s Big Maggie Bäckstedt, in honor of Magnus Bäckstedt, since everytime he comes in for a sprint finish, the race commentator (Phil Liggett or Paul Sherwin, I can’t tell them apart) yell “And here comes Big Mmmmmagggy Bäcksteadt on the outside!!” in an English or Austrailian accent. How could you have a cat named Maggie and not occasionally repeat that?

Friends for life
Friends for life, that’s what I always say.

She’s fitting in nicely, except that she has picked up Bill’s worst habits – trolling the kitchen for food, dragging trash out to “play” with it, and lately, smacking the kitchen cabinets open and crawling inside to look for the feed cup. It’s completely obnoxious behavior, and I wish she’d knock it off before Beau Hunk gets fed up with two monsters in the house and orders her eviction. But when she and Bill aren’t tearing up the joint, they can usually be found playing or napping together. It’s nice to know Bill has a pal, since my cat hates everything that isn’t me, and me she only barely tolerates.

One thing we have discovered is that three cats are not 50% more work than two cats. The difference is exponential, and not always in a good way.

We’ve all gotten a year older since the last time I updated. I’m 39. I can’t believe it. I still wonder how the hell I got here, because it seems like just a few days ago I was 35. Time really does fly when you’re sitting on your ass watching the world go by.


Woo and I baked a cake for Beau Hunk’s birthday. It was a fudge cake with chocolate pudding / whipped cream frosting. Woo went shopping with me to buy the gel stuff for the lettering. (It says “Happy Birthday Daddy”.) Woo picked blue for the color of the lettering. He saw the number candles and said we had to have those. Then he picked out the striped candles too. After the cake was baked and frosted, Woo told me where to put the candles. It was really cute!

Valentine’s Day
Speaking of cute, my husband did something for Valentine’s Day that was too much fun. I know, I know – Valentine’s Day stories only don’t suck if they’re about you. So feel free to skip to the next heading if you want, cuz this one’s for my memory book.

As usual, we said we weren’t going to celebrate, and kept day low-key. I had class at 5pm, so at 4:20, off to school I went. When I got to my classroom at 4:45, a gentleman in a red-and-white striped shirt popped his head in the door and asked for me by name. After I identified myself, he called out “We’ve found her!”, when three more gentlemen in red-and-white striped shirts appeared – a barbershop quartet. They insisted I step out into the hallway, handed me a single red rose, then sang me a lengthy medly of “Let Me Call You Sweetheart”, “I Love You Truly”, and “Love Me Tender”. People from other classrooms came out into the hall to witness my gift, and were treated to seeing my face turn as red as the rose in my hand.

Beau Hunk had planned that one beautifully! He had gotten the idea from a local newscast the day before, that featured this group. His instructions to the singers were that they were to absolutely not interrupt class time, but they were to make it as embarassing as possible. He called the school to find out what class I had that night, and in which building and room I could be found.

It was much more fun than flowers and dinner!

School, Redux
I’m halfway through the Spring semester, and I just finished up my mid-terms. I’m taking five legal classes this semester – Commercial Law, Probate, Estate Planning, Discovery and Legal Research and Writing II. I was going to say that I was doing pretty well in my classes this semester, but last night I got one of my mid-terms back and found out I kinda bombed it.

I got a C, but I don’t feel entirely bad since everyone else bombed it too, and my score wasn’t far off the top. I also don’t feel too bad about the score since I lost a huge amount of points for form, but had the theory, concept, application and final outcome all dead on. I suspect another instructor would have given much more credit there. Too bad one of them isn’t teaching this class.

Oh well, that’s the way it goes. The last thing I want to do is join the throng of students who start whining about how much an instructor sucks because I didn’t get a good grade. He had the right to take off points, but I take personal comfort in knowing that I knew the rules and applied them correctly, form be damned. That helps dim the flashing light inside my head that reads “Dumbass!!”

In spite of the mid-term hiccup, overall I think I’m doing well this semester. I’m not sure I can pull off a 4.0 this time, but so what. I doubt it will affect my search for a job, and that’s what really matters.

I used the grades of last semester to apply for a bunch of scholarships this semester – a total of six to be exact. Five of them had a deadline of Feb. 15th, the other March 15th. I haven’t heard a single peep about the first five yet, which has me thinking I’m getting passed over. Maybe I don’t understand how scholarships work, but I would have thought I might have heard something by now. Maybe, maybe not, we’ll see.

Speaking of acedemc achievement, I’ve been invited to join Phi Theta Kappa, the two-year college honor society. Don’t be impressed, I’m not. The letter says I can join for a one-time membership fee of $80. It goes on to say “Not only does membership provide opportunites to complete your education or enhance your job search through scholarships and career services, but it also gives you an outlet for developing leadership skills through community service.” Oh, so if I give you $80, you’ll tell me where I can volunteer? Peachy. And to get the scholarships, you have to attend chapter meetings. I can’t think of anything (that doesn’t involve blood loss) that I might want to do less. So basically, I can’t think of a single reason why I should join. If you can think of a good one, let me know.

Site Maintenance
You probably haven’t noticed, nor would I blame you, but I’ve changed the site around a teeny bit. I finally got around to upgrading WordPress, which changed my template. I’m far too lazy to spend too much time re-doing it, and I kind of like it. I think I fucked up the old template when I tweaked it anyway, so here you go. I think the header’s too big, but see the laziness comment above.

But the biggest reason I mention this is that I’ve enabled RSS feeds. Isn’t it nice that I’ve finally moved into the 21st century? Let’s face it, I’m just not the techno-geek that I used to be. (Oh that hurts to admit!) If something’s not working, please drop me a line.

So I think that’s the highlights of the last six months. Kinda sad, come to think of it.

Five Furry Alarm Clocks

Sunday, March 25th, 2007

Just about every day I ask the same question: “Why do we own five animals??” More often than not, this question is asked between 6:30 and 7:30am, just as I’m trying to finish off my morning sleep and our five furry alarm clocks are letting me know, in less than gentle terms, that morning has broken.

Bill and Maggie will have started their morning calesthenics, chasing each other through the house, creating a thundering herd of cat. This usually gets Eli’s attention, who then goes tearing off after them, growling and snarling. (Good thing he’s only playing!) The train of cat-cat-dog will then run over the Red Dog, waking him up. Since he’s awake, he comes into our room and sticks his big red face in mine and pants his horrid dog breath into my dreams. Somewhere in all of this flurry of activity, my cat will come into our room and jump on top of the television, which is an amazingly noisy process.

If none of this gets us out of bed, then Bill and Maggie pull out the big guns, moving thier chase to our bedroom, where their path criss-crosses our bed, with at least one of them using a sleeping human for a springboard at a dead run. Claws have known to be involved in this process.

Although I’ve perfected Beau Hunk’s habit of creating a blissful nest of silence by sleeping the morning away with my head sandwiched between two pillows, I have yet to find anything that protects my sleep from a cat missle, fired from ten feet. It’s usually at this point when one of us wakes up and sleepily stomps out of the room, wishing we were awake enough to kick anything that’s dumb enough to stay within a foot’s reach.

What really blows my mind about this process is that apparently it is clock driven, not Earth-to-sun ratio driven. When we hit Daylight Savings Time, I thought the circus might start an hour later, but nooooooo, can’t have that! The little fuckers started in at the same time, even though it was dark. I swear, they’ve learned to tell time.

More than once Beau Hunk has threated to turn Bill into a fuzzy pair of underwear during this awakening period. On other occasions he’s proposed we start our own version of Survivor, voting cats into the canyon as they piss us off. Most of the time I end up cracking one sleep-crusted eye open and letting the herd know that I am the only thing that stands between them and being the special of the day at the Coyote Diner, so they damn well better start sucking up to the Momma. Letting her sleep would be a great start. This tactic has yet to pay off.

Bill did reach a new height of obnoxious the other night, and believe me, that’s saying something. Beau Hunk fried a chicken, and when he was done, he scraped out the pan into the disposal. Then we left the house and ran an errand.

When we got back, Bill was sporting an odd spikey hairdo on the back of his head and shoulders. The counter was greasy, and there was a smear from something that had been dragged out on to the counter and consumed. I picked up Bill and sniffed his head. I think Beau Hunk said it best: “Bill! You smell like the ass-end of a KFC!” The little fucker had stuck his fat head into the disposal and made a snack of the pan scrapings, getting fried chicken grease all over his head and shoulders.

So as I type this, guess what each and every one of the Five Furry Fuckers is doing? You guessed it – sleeping. And not one of them is doing it within arm’s reach of me. Two words kids: Coyote Chow. Just something to think about.