Archive for January, 2011

A few pictures I thought I would post.  And yes that is Sequoia sitting on the porch eating an icycle. Sequoia fast asleep, toes up.  That is Deirdre sleeping on her nose.  And of course good ole’ home sweet home.

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I don’t eat blue food.

My dog begs and does tricks for a chunk of cheddar cheese every morning.  She won’t touch it at night because it is morning cheese.

                I like rainy days, but I hate being in the rain.

Sequoia will not tolerate anyone blowing on her, yet she gets in the car and all she wants to do is stick her face out the window nose to the wind.  As a responsible pet owner, I beg you only to do this at slow speeds, it is not funny when dogs get hit in the head with flying rocks.

                I don’t eat organ meat of any sort

We purchased some knuckle bones for Sequoia, she would not even lick at them until we covered them in BBQ sauce and put them on the grill.

                I won’t eat spaghetti in public.

Sequoia will go into Petco and beg for treats, (and get them from the staff) yet if we purchase any of those treats and bring them home she won’t eat them.  It does not matter that she loved them in the store because those are Petco treats.

                When I moved to Pennsylvania I brought along my cat Kaliban.  She passed away a few years ago but I think of her often.

If you say ‘Kaliban’ in Sequoia’s presence she throws her head back and howls I like to think that Sequoia is also missing Kaliban and is singing to her.

                I may be hairy

Sequoia is a hairy beast.

                I’m lazy and sedentary

Sequoia, very un-husky like is also quite sedentary.  She does not destroy the furniture; she has every toy we have ever given her.  Every morning just before I open her door, I say, quite loudly, “Release the Kraken” almost every morning she comes out stretching and yawning, makes it about two steps past her door and lays down again.

                While I spent most of my life demonstrating magic tricks, I don’t like to be the center of attention.

When Sequoia enters a room, she makes sure everyone knows she is in the building.

                I’m not overly fond of people.

Sequoia positively hates other dogs, they are the enemy!  However, every Friday in August at 6pm, Wiscoy has its annual Ice cream social for dogs. She spends a great deal of time growling at the other dogs, yet she loves the event.

                I don’t like ketchup

We like to call Sequoia our Sequoiamatic, give her a plate and she will clean it like new that is unless there is ketchup, she thinks it is evil.

                I’m possessive

 Sequoia doesn’t like other animals touching her stuff of course ‘her stuff’ is everything in her line of sight. 

               I’ve heard it said that pets and their owners rub off on one another. 

I believe this to be true, all my clothes are covered in Husky hair.

                I snore on occasion.

Sequoia is a snoring fool.

                 Everybody who comes in contact with Sequoia always tells me how beautiful she is.

Never has anybody told Sequoia how beautiful I am.

                 My wife tells me that sometimes I don’t listen.

If you don’t have food, Sequoia is not the best listener either.

                Sometimes Sequoia doesn’t know when to stop whining.

Sometimes I don’t know when to stop typing.

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It was a time before the snows fell, a time when gas was still under three dollars a gallon and there were still only 12 Zodiac signs. The leaves were already off the trees and the forest floor was spongy from the rains. Nairb opened his eyes just before dawn, in truth he didn’t know or care when Dawn opened her eyes, it didn’t matter as Dawn has nothing to do with the tale being told. The sun however, had not yet crested the horizon. One thought entered Nairb’s head ‘check the sump pump!’ It had indeed been checked the previous night but like all things mechanical sometimes the sump pump fails.

Alone and miserable Nairb, fortified in jeans, a sweatshirt, light jacket and a trusty flashlight went out into the cold driving wind and rain. Down he went into the desolate world of spider webs, insulation and cement. The root cellar housed the heating unit for the house along with the main water intake and of course, the sump pump.

The cold dirty water flowed over the tops of his boots. Instantly his feet were freezing. Gritting his teeth against the cold in his boots Nairb sloshed over to the sump pump and deeper water. Quickly he tapped on the hose waking up the sleeping beast.

Nairb waited, his only comfort was the circle of light his flashlight provided. His feet so cold they were tingling, but hunched over the sump pump he waited to make sure the water went down. Eventually he saw the change, the water was slowly retreating. Nairb headed back into the driving rain his freezing feet swimming in his boots. Finally making it to the front porch, looking into the window he saw his beautiful wife, Ecyned getting ready for work after all it was only Thursday. Nairb bent, removed his boots and lifted them so his wife could see as he dumped the river from them. Ecyned’s eyes opened wide.

Nairb opened the front door and peeled off his soaking socks, the door closed behind him but did not latch, DID NOT LATCH! Almost crying from the cold it was all Nairb could do to make it to the bedroom and dry his burning feet. Ecyned, his loving wife and fast thinker got a second pair of socks and headed for the laundry room where she could toss them in the dryer to heat up to ease the pain in Nairb’s aching feet.

The laundry room doubles as Aiouqes bedroom (my apologies, Denyce backwards is hard enough to pronounce Sequoia’s is almost impossible).

In opening the laundry room door Ecyned freed the dog, Aiouqes into the rest of the house. And unknown to all the front door had not latched, THE FRONT DOOR HAD NOT LATCHED! Nairb, trying to warm his feet in the bedroom heard the dreaded call from the front room. “Aiouqes! Get back here! Aiouqes! Nairb Aiouqes got out!” Nairb threw on a fresh pair of jeans, didn’t even bother with socks. Donned his black sweatshirt, slipped his feet into his running shoes, and followed his wife and the dog out the door into the freezing rain and driving wind.

He caught a glimpse of Aiouqes as she darted behind the garage. Nairb followed heading into the woods calling out in his loudest voice ‘Aiouqes! Aiouqes!’ In the distance he could hear his wife also calling for the dog! Unfortunately it was the start of buck season. In central Pa most men live for two only two reasons, hunting and football. Neither Nairb nor Ecyned were wearing orange. Aiouqes with her large plume tale and red and white colouring could easily be mistaken by an overzealous hunter for a buck and both Nairb and Ecyned could easily be shot for running through the woods yelling and screaming scaring all the deer away.

Freezing tired and soaked to the bone Nairb kept trailing Aiouqes it was a difficult task as he would catch glimpses of her but if he followed too close Aiouqes would think it was a game and keep running. But if he gave up it was a good bet that Aiouqes would just run and be lost forever, that is what huskies do, they run.  Finally Aiouqes turned and headed back towards civilization, Nairb chased her through the yards of many neighbours. He spied his wife through the trees; she was in the car driving up and down the road. Aiouqes was heading in the right direction, heading for home via the backyard of a neighbour. Nairb managed to jump up and down attracting the attention of his wife, using hand signals (stupidly he neglected to pick up his cell phone as he ran out the door earlier) he let Ecyned know that the dog was heading towards the house. Nairb turned a corner around the side of a house and lost track of Aiouqes she simply vanished in the driving rain.

Nairb ran onto the street calling her name. Exhausted shivering losing feeling in his fingers and toes Nairb stood on the street calling and calling. From behind he heard a voice. The neighbour in full hunting gear was standing on his door step demanding to know what was going on.

“My dog got away from me”

“The red and white husky? It is a miserable day for her to be out and about”

“Yes I know, I managed to keep her in my sights but lost her in your backyard”

“Well I just got back from my hunting camp and didn’t see her, but I’ll keep an eye out”

Suddenly there was movement from behind. There she is! Nairb was tired and at a crossroads. Aiouqes stood deep in the lawn across the street. Nairb knew that if he approached Aiouqes would run again. He got onto his knees on the wet pavement, patted his chest and called out to her. Aiouqes went into play bow enjoying the game and would not come.

“If I called her would she come to me?” Said the large man in his hunting fatigues

“You could try, she likes strangers.”

He called her name and whistled, Aiouqes unable to resist anybody new moved a step closer. A car was coming down the street, Nairb seeing the possible light at the end of the tunnel stepped into the street blocking the car from advancing, the large man called again. Without missing a beat Aiouqes went running to the large unfamiliar man calling her name. The large hunter closed his front gate trapping Aiouqesvon his porch. Nairb standing in the street frozen, wet and weary asked the hunter,

“Do you want a husky? Only five dollars and I’ll give you the fiver.” The hunter only laughed and Nairb thanked the hunter as he secured the leash to the collar and led the wet dog down the porch. Ecyned drove up the road in the car, relieved to see Aiouqes safe and secure. Ecyned opened the car door, both Aiouqes and Nairb were only too happy to jump in, Nairb thanking the hunter again before closing the car door.

Tonight, gas is up past three dollars a gallon there is snow on the ground, an extra zodiac sign has been added to the zodiac calendar, Nairb and his lovely wife Ecyned sit in their recliners, finally enough time has passed that Nairb can tell this tale without feeling that sick feeling in the pit of his stomach while Ecyned plays a video game.

Aiouqes? She is lying on her back in the kitchen, paws in the air, (like she just don’t care) in her mouth is a utility bill which she has grasped by the corner and is wiggling on her back making the paper flop back and forth across her cheeks. I think I’ll keep my five dollars and my dog. But now, no matter what we make sure the door is latched. THE DOOR IS LATCHED!

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For weeks there was a stray German shepherd struggling to survive behind the Saint Joan of Arc Catholic church in Cambria County in central Pennsylvania. It was reported that the God loving Pastor of this church encouraged his flock to ignore the dog, probably in hopes that it would just go away, like any good sheep they obeyed while the dog needlessly suffered.

If another unfortunate set of circumstances would not have unfolded the way they did this dog would have died cold, alone, afraid and starving a few feet from a house of God while it’s parishioners warm and well fed prayed, asking God to recognize them as good people.

A woman approached the dog and the dog snapped at her, the husband then shot the dog in the head.  The dog survived and was rescued by a local dog rescue called Dogs Deserve Better.

The story gets interesting as more facts come to light. After the dog was shot it was one of the parishioners who eventually made a report to the authorities.  Once the report was made and word got out Dogs Deserve Better stepped in and rescued the dog who then offered a $1000.00 reward for information on the shooter.  It was only after the reward was offered that the woman stepped up to the plate and admitted that it was her husband who shot the dog.  The latest update is that the police concluded their investigation and the shooter is being charged with animal cruelty.

I don’t understand why all this happened?  When the dog first appeared couldn’t the pastor simply call the Humane Society of Cambria County?  How can one call themselves a good Christian and then knowingly allow one of God’s creatures to suffer?  Suffer a few feet from where they worship and intentionally do nothing about it?  I laugh at the person who ratted out their husband in order to collect a thousand dollars, only to have him charged with animal abuse.  The whole pathetic lot are just a bunch of Rat Bastards!

I am thankful that the dog was eventually rescued and will soon be in a good home. 

Calling yourself a good Christian because you go to church, is like calling yourself a mechanic because you have a car in your driveway.

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I Hope

I was thinking about the New Year.  At first, even though I don’t make New Year’s resolutions I thought about trying to be more positive.  After every negative statement I would say something positive.  Giving this more thought I realized that if I was going to do that, then why would I say anything negative to begin with?  Okay, so I won’t say anything negative.  Giving this a moment more thought I came to the conclusion that if I wouldn’t say anything negative I’d probably never speak again.  While some may view that as a positive, I view it as a negative which is why I don’t make resolutions.

So what does the New Year hold?  I don’t know.  I can however hope.

I hope:

                My friends and family stay happy and healthy.

                The positive always outweighs the negative.

                The economy improves and people start finding work again.

I hope:

                To finish off some home renovations, to get our garage under some sort of control, to put my tools to good use

                To make the term ‘Rat Bastard’ popular again!  If you are with me on this then put a ‘Hell Yeah’ in the comments section, if not, then you are part of the problem you Rat Bastards, you know who you are.

                To make some new friends and keep up with the old

                They don’t cancel the show, ‘Wipe Out’

                To keep my wife from sticking her finger in my ear, (don’t ask)

I hope:

                This year with my wife will be as wonderful as the last 9 years.

To You:

                To paraphrase Mr. Spock, ‘Live happy and prosper’

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Every year my wife and I manage the ritual of forcing ourselves to stay awake till midnight on New Year’s Eve.  Every year the countdown starts and I find myself rushing to the kitchen uncorking the wine splashing some into each glass and sitting back down on the couch beside my wife we both call out in our in our half asleep voices in unison with Dick Clark 4…3…2…1!  Happy New Year!  We sip our wine give each other a kiss tell each other we love each other and then we haul our tired, lazy asses off to bed as the neighbours irritatingly set of fireworks.

In the morning we dump the remaining wine from our glasses down the sink and for the next 8 months we shuffle the half corked wine bottle around the fridge in an effort to make space until somebody bites the bullet and dumps the remains.

We both enjoy a drink.  We both enjoy wine; wine is for special events or company and considering how little company we get, company itself is a special event.  Yet special events come and go and there the bottle sits.

Beer never goes to waste and there is never a partially opened bottle to shuffle around. Liquor never goes to waste.  Liquor lasts forever and stays in the pantry rather than taking up much needed room in the fridge.  I have no problem adding a splash or two of Captain Jack’s spiced rum to my soda.  Being the owner of a Jimmy ‘Buffet Margarita Maker’ we always have different flavours of rum and vodka in the house along Tequila, Triple Sec and various bourbons and of course you never know when you will need a shot of whiskey.

This year we decided to do things a little differently.  We were not going to open another bottle of wine.  And we were not going to force ourselves to stay awake till midnight.  We would go to bed at our usual time 10pm, if not earlier.

December 31 we found ourselves running errands and decided to see what we could find in the alcohol store.  We are not connoisseurs by any stretch of the imagination.  We look for the coolest looking bottles we could possibly afford.  Speaking of which, I don’t know how people can afford to be alcoholics.  A bottle of cheap common vodka is eight dollars, want a little better? The price jumps to twelve dollars and up, and up!  Even Nyquil is a fortune these days, but I digress.

My wife shows me a bottle of something called Irish Mist.  We like Irish, my wife has some Irish blood and a friend in Vancouver is of Irish descent and she is cool.  The back of the bottle describes the liquor as a distinctly Irish smoked and honey flavor.   The little tag has some directions for drinking, (I suppose that is for idiots like myself how can’t figure out how to drink) you can either add a shot to cola (cola=pop or soda depending on where you come from) with a twist of lime, or pour over ice and then drain into a shot glass.  I was thrilled, usually when they give you additional recipes you have to spend another three hundred dollars on the spirits.

We finally made it home and it was time to attend to Irish Mist. I got two short glasses placed an ice cube in each and added a shot of Mist.  We sat down on the recliners and I had my first sip.  I closed my eyes as the honeyed liquid velvet slowly whispered its way into my soul. My second swallow finished the shot. I looked over at my wife, she was already sucking on the ice cube and holding her glass.  In her best Oliver Twist mimicry said: “More Sir, please more”

Two more ice cubes, two three more shots.  My wife the tequila drinker tells me she is feeling tipsy but perhaps just one more shot.  Plink, plink two more ice cubes.

Some habits are harder to break than others.  Long past our bedtime, the dog is snoring on the couch and suddenly the countdown has started and once again I’m in the kitchen two more ice cubes three more shots I manage to sit down as Dick Clark takes over from Ryan Seacrest and slurs out the last 10 seconds (really Dick, you’ve done a great job, we all love you, but perhaps it is time to retire).  Four, three, two, one…Happy New Year!  We kiss each other, kiss the dog.  The neigbours set off the fireworks but for some reason they are not so irritating this time around.  We drift off into a peaceful slumber with Irish fairies dancing in our heads.  

And so a new tradition is born!

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