Thursday, June 16, 2016

Mourning Doves On the Rocks

Lots of cheeping baby bird voices have been heard this spring, here at the homestead.  For instance, a pair of Mourning Doves had a nest near this rock. 




Now the youngster is fledging.










Here's a bit of information on Mourning Doves.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Henry's Honor

 
Some dogs are stoic when they don't feel well.  They valiantly soldier on.  Some dogs whine when they hurt, look at you all sad eyed, seeking comfort.  Some dogs respond to discomfort by caterwauling as though they are being tortured.  Henry is of this last type.
 
 


Henry suffers from a common toy dog problem.  Luxating patella.  On a veterianaran website providing information about the condition there is a picture of a Pomeranian.  How about that for a coinkydink! 

A luxating patella occurs when the connecting tissue that holds the knee cap to the leg is not tightly attached.  The knee cap tends to get off track.  Usually it pops back into place but all this moving around invites inflammation which, of course, aggravates matters.  In short, what Henry has is an unstable knee system.

While the knees of big dogs do sometimes dislocate, the problem is far more prevalent in tiny companion animals, like Henry.  It seems dogs that are not toys are less likely to be weak in the knees.





Real dogs have real knees!
 

 


Alas, Henry's feeble knee tendency has been evident since puppyhood. 




It didn't seem to bother him too much though. He would occasionally yelp as he scurried around but barely broke stride.  Reasonably enough, Henry was reacting to his knee cap moving out of place than back in again, surely an unpleasant sensation.  Henry's macho playing through the pain didn't last though.







In time,  Henry's emoting over his booboo knees increased.  Before long Henry achieved drama queen status.  Indeed, the agony evidently became so unendurable that Henry actually asked to be carried.  (Henry's other condition is Small Dog Syndrome. Among the symptoms of this condition are being cute and barking for no reason.  There is also a dash of the Napoleonic.  Henry displays this trait in not wanting to be carried.  The Little Corporal prefers to strut unaided, you see.)  Thus, Henry asking to be carried, made it clear he was truly having issues with his hind legs.  Well, that and the hysterical screaming.








A combination of bad luck, less than ideal genetics, having been bred down from a normal sized dog to a little bitty toy creature, and who knows what else, have taken a toil on Henry's knees.  Other factors, such as all that running down the hall like a demented chipmonk, leaping about like an insane kangaroo, and surely most damaging of all, the pirouettes, have turned Henry's less than stellar knees into infirm knees.








Still, it's not all gloom and neurosis.  There's a little strain of honor in this little dog.  Obviously, if your knee hurts, it hurts even more when you use it.  When it's time to go potty, Henry has to go all the way outside walking on his sore knee, then stand on his sore knee to tinkle.  He could just do it on the porch right outside the back door (as he does when the snow is deep).   But no.  Stalwart Henry steps down off the porch and onto the grass to do his business.







For now, Henry's knee is day to day, as they say about injured baseball players not yet on the disabled list.  Will Henry's knee trouble flare up again?  Probably.  Such a tough row to hoe.  After all, Henry doesn't always handle unpleasent well.  He cries when he gets his hair brushed.




Monday, May 30, 2016

Memorial Day



The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.

-Thucydides

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Pop Culture Frenzy, Round 47

Welcome once again to Pop Culture Frenzy. 



Last week in Pittsburgh, a burglary suspect running from police, taunted them with a nursery rhyme. Which nursery rhyme?

Molly?




 
Hark hark the dogs do bark?
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  incorrect. 
Byron?
 
 
 
 
Three Blind Mice?
 
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  incorrect.
Fluffy?
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tom, Tom the piper's son.  Stole a
pig and away he run.
 
 
 
 
The pig was eat and Tom
was beat.
 
 
 
And Tom went roaring
 down the street.  
 
 
 
 
Police brutality is a real
problem.
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  incorrect.
Cyndi, with which nursery rhyme did the burglar taunt the police?
 
 
 
 
They shouldn't chase suspects.
Someone could get hurt.
 
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  still waiting for your answer.
 
 
 
 
 
Hey diddle diddle the cat and the fiddle. 
The cow jumped over the moon.
 
 
 
 
The little dog laughed
to see such sport.
 
 
 
 
And the dish ran away
with the spoon!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Do you suppose most poets take
psychedelic drugs?
 
 
 
 
 
Some say it enhances the imagination.
Didn't Edgar Allan Poe take drugs?
 
 
 
 
 
Maybe the Pittsburgh burglar
was a poet.  He stole
 to pay for drugs!
 
 
 
 
 
 
If he did, he needs help,
not police misconduct.
 
 
 

Hostmaster:  he'll have lots of time to write poetry in jail.  By the way, the answer is The Gingerbread Man.
 
 
 
 
 
Run run as fast as you can.
You can't catch me, I'm the
Gingerbread Man.
 
 
 
 
 
So ends another round
 with no winners. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nevermore!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Round 47
Fluffy/Molly  21
Bryan/Cyndi   18
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Pop Culture Frenzy, Round 46

Welcome once again to Pop Culture Frenzy.  In honor of National Reentry Week, the Department of Justice created a new policy aimed at avoiding the words "felon" and "convict" when referring to felons and convicts.  Use of such harsh, accurate words are "disparaging", might hurt convicts' feelings and put a damper on felonial success.



What should we call them now?
Bryan?





Crooks?
 

Hostmaster:  incorrect.
Fluffy?
 
 
 
 
Credit Risks?
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  incorrect.
Molly?
 
 
 
 
 
Jail Birds?
 
 
 

Hostmaster:  incorrect.
Cyndi?
 
 
 
 
 
Unfortunate?
 
 
 
 

Hostmaster:  the DOJ just might approve of that one.
Bryan?
 
 
 
 
 
Criminals?
 
 
 

Hostmaster:  incorrect.  Are you even trying?
 
 
 

Not really.  I can't
seem to get worked up over
hurting a hoodlum's feelings.
 
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  good thing you don't work for the government.
 
 
 
 
Indeed.
 My tendency is to call a
law breaker a law breaker.
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  Fluffy?
 
 
 
 
How about peccant?
 
 
 

Hostmaster:  that's pretty.  It's still offensive.
Molly?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I'm confused.
If calling them what they are
is wrong, why call
 them anything?
 
 
 
 
Hostmaster:  don't forget, this is government.  Groups of people must be labeled.  Some of these groups need special handling. 

Minds more nuanced than ours have come up with a couple of suggestions to replace the unacceptable "convict" and "felon".  These are they.  "A person who committed a crime" and "an individual who was incarcerated."
 

 
 

They can do better than that!
That's still belittling people
who are reintegrating into
society after serving
 their sentence.
 

 
 
 
 
Sometimes the truth be little.
So ends this Round.  Nobody wins.
 
 
 
 
 
Round 46
Fluffy/Molly  21
Bryan/Cyndi   18
 


 
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Sunday, May 1, 2016

What's My Name

I've been married to The Handsome One for over twenty years. 


 
 
When we married, I kept my name.  This was not due to some notion of modern womanhood or  feminist whatnot.  I'd had the same name for 33 years, that name was who I was.  The name thing was non issue to THO.  Had children occurred, I would have changed the name.  Well.  Children did not occur. 
 
It is a little embarrassing to admit that a big reason I didn't change my name is that it was inconvenient.  You might say I kept my name out of laziness.  All this wouldn't matter now, if it were not that I seemed to have changed.
 
 
 
 
My identity is now very much THO's wife.  So.  Should I change my name 21 years after the wedding? 
 
 
 
 
There's something else.  The Handsome One's mother's name was Lynn too.  I never met my mother-in-law, she passed away before I met her son.  It felt wrong that our names be the same- like it was somehow disrespectful, audacious.  Now, I wonder if it would be in honor of her son, that fine man who is my husband, that I share her name.