first half July 2005

more media, dead bodies, and strong emotions
2005-07-14— Posted by: allegra

A corpse fell into traffic in Texas the other day. I dunno, if I saw something like that I would take it as a sign to slow down. Some employee of a funeral home didn’t secure the back door of the truck, and down will come corpsey, gurney and all.

Saw Paul Bettany in The Reckoning last night. I thought a lot of it was a wilful misrepresentation of medieval English life, but there was almost enough dirt for a Python flick, so I guess that was okay.

Then watched the War Stories episode of Firefly. Ah, playful banter during torture. TV is so much better than real life, don’t you think? I think it is possible we may have converted Katie into a fan, though. Ha! Feel the sinister clutches!

Got a call from Alan last night. He will be in town for a wedding the end of August (whee!) so I get to see him and his lady wife Janice. I told him we speak of him often (uh oh was his response) mostly in connection with various cultural high points that he introduced me to, like, lessee… Art Spiegelman’s Maus… Dead Can Dance… Neal Stephenson (he loaned me a first edition of Zodiac back when nobody knew who the hell Neal was) and I’d give anything to put a Wonkette style reference in here but everybody I know, including my mother, would be crimped at me.

Note from 2019. Alan dumped me, a few years later, (I mean you knew I was poly, right?) over the phone, while I was at work, and sitting across from my boss’s cubicle.  He had an office. It never occurred to him to even think about that. What a ….He’s an utter polished turd, and I wish his third wife well of him. Sure he introduced me to a lot of great stuff but Paul’s worth five of him in terms of character, humility and usefulness.

Note to Dax… I witnessed Katie’s reaction to a good chunk of the extended IM session you guys had yesterday, and while I still like you, I think you need to a) get out more and b) shake your head a couple of times. If you don’t give people an opportunity to revise their story, they won’t, especially when the slightest shift causes hysteria in the audience. Maybe you think that you have the right not to be lied to by anyone, but most of us old tired adults are used to being lied to so much that we hardly take offence at it anymore. We emotionally shelter with people who don’t lie to gain respite from a world of lies. I don’t know if you think yesterday’s exchange was useful; it didn’t look that way to me. So may I humbly suggest that you SHIF-W your communication style a bit.

see you doing this.

hear you doing this.

imagine this means … whatever fevered imaginings are troubling your brain.

feel and then sum up how the action/speech makes you feel.

Then, the grand finale – I want this outcome, this behaviour change, this speech change.

This communication technique does two things. I allows you to think through what you’re feeling so that you can express it without sounding like you’re coming unglued, and it prevents you from having the message you want to convey get derailed as you respond to what the other person says.

PS, it doesn’t work in an employment sitch. Tried it in a product meeting once, sucked to be me.

PPS, wish I used the technique more consistently, but sometimes it feels way better to uncork the whupass, and it definitely makes better theatre.

Writers group tonight, must print something off.

The water heater is now tied to the frame of the house, yay Paul.

2005-07-14— Posted by: allegra

The toll free number at work was broken for about 2 1/2 days this week. Considering all the other crap that has been going on I’ve been getting a little torqued and got bitchslapped by a customer on the phone today. I deserved it, but I’m finding this really tiresome.

enough sleep
2005-07-13— Posted by: allegra

Woke up this morning feeling like somebody had been lovingly dropping grains of silica gel into my mouth all night.

Saw Fantastic Four last night – three of us got in for $12 cause it was cheap night at the New West Cinema. The movie is unpretentious and completely ridiculous, and only worth seeing because of the Thing. If it doesn’t win best makeup I’ll be annoyed.

2005-07-12— Posted by: allegra

This is Suzanne’s cat Limpet, who is missing a hind foot. (Missing foot not shown). She’s an extraordinarily pretty cat; quite tiny, and this pic does not convey the beauty of her plushtoy fur, although I must say it conveys her personality nicely.

2019:  this ‘crippled’ animal once CAUGHT A BAT AND BROUGHT IT INSIDE. pandemonium ensyued.

Must reads and rumors
2005-07-12— Posted by: allegra

He must have posted about two minutes ago (it’s 3:30 am here) but it’s a full grown fire breathing dragon of a post. Hint. He don’t like Karl Rove.

Rumors… Keith Richards to do a cameo as Jack Sparrow’s Pop in Pirates II? Magic Excellent Air Guitar Riff Inserted Here. 2019 says I WAS SO DISAPPOINTED SON

From Boing Boing…Those Crazy Koreans: Associated Press reports that Korea’s Doosan Bears pitcher Park Myung-hwan was caught keeping frozen cabbage under his cap. He explains that he was trying to keep cool, but the Korea Baseball Organization issued a ruling in a statement that said quote wearing cabbage leaves inside a baseball cap constitutes an inner quote alien material end inner quote that may disrupt a game end quote. I must start following the Doosan Bears; they sound like they really know how to have good fun.

In news that will surprise no one who wishes Bill Gates would either convert to open source or die abruptly after changing his will, MS is buying a spyware company and has changed its new Anti Spyware to ignore the festering code of this new limb of Satan. Question… how many arms does one Prince of Lies need, anyway?

Also from Boing Boing, a picture of a chair which has a juicer on it so a lapdancer can, um, extract the juice from a 🙂 piece of fruit using nothing but the gift the Goddess gave her and, that’s right, pelvic force. Sales in Surrey are expected to be brisk, and Kevin Federline has already bought two, I assume for two different rooms in his house.

Jim E is back from the opening bars of the new song of his life; his little girl is here and apart from sleeping issues, she’s the new queen of his heart. No word from Carol but I await their reports on parenting with abiding love and interest.

2019 says she’s gorgeous, she’s smart, Jim and Carol still love her with everything they have.

Charbaum made my life a beautiful thing by sending me an invite to Arden’s 1st birthday party (his pic posted in a previous blog); set for a weekend Paul can’t attend, aw.

Since quite a few people want to know, I am back to sleeping in my own bed, and Paul’s hearing appears to have been restored. This means that I can make my requests in future at a more reasonable volume. I can’t say all is well but much is better. Also, it’s just wild how many one bedroom apartments are for rent in New Westminster right now… there are forty, and I already got approved for two, and I only started looking Sunday, and here it is Tuesday am at 3:48…. Alert readers will connect the dots and think “Uh oh, hot tub!” but if you throw in (all right, that’s enough, the laundry list of grievances real and imagined here redacted), you get the idea. If you burn your arse, as Dunnett so poetically wrote, you sit on the blister. Hey, that loops back to the juicer seat! Very nice. On that note, I’m back to bed. Paul’s at work. Jumping Jimmy Christmas, what buttheads I have living in my ‘hood! Who would honk their horns at 3:54 am? Bastards. Oh, yeah, that’s right, I’m already awake. Katie home, shoes here. Must let her know that really nice apartment on St Andrew isn’t a happening thing. Dang, it was a gorgeous place, and heh heh…. cable was included. Now it would be an Elastigirl style stretch to think I could ever get Paul to consider cable, but to quote Hemingway, isn’t it pretty to think so? A mosquito just flew up my nose, I’m outta here.

very funny
2005-07-12— Posted by: allegra

me laughing…..

Got Wood?
2005-07-11— Posted by: allegra

This is TamTam dressed for Pride Day standing in front of a statue of Alexander Wood. He was gay, a long long time ago, before it was fashionable. LIKE the coat and that fancy hat. This statue was unveiled in the heart of the gay barrio in Toronto, and TamTam’s choir sang at the dedication. He was an honoured public servant even though he had to leave town due to a sex scandal in the early part of the 19th century.

Google Alexander Wood gay 1844 for more details.

So I lied.
2005-07-10— Posted by: allegra

Nuthin but hugs and puppies from now on
2005-07-10— Posted by: allegra

This is a Stump Tailed Macaque. He is 7 days old. Isn’t he cute?

too bad, so sad
2005-07-10— Posted by: allegra

At 7:30 this morning Paul told me he doesn’t want the hot tub. So I’m emailing people and phoning people to make the whole process stop. I am very sad about his decision.

This now colors my entire experience of this weekend. Half an hour ago I wanted to talk about how much fun I had yesterday, but now it seems pointless.

I did have a lot of fun with Mike McG and his wife Liz yesterday, as we sucked back Sleemans and traded screechingly rude aviation/childrearing stories on his back porch. One of his stories I will cherish forever, and the picture of the sloth was cute.

Katie is back from Dax’s in fine form. Upon her return to the family fold, she presented me with a malapropism that combines anatomy, geography and political incorrectness in such a fashion that I justabout whizzed myself. Unfortunately I can’t repeat it in a family publication, but adult readers of this blog are invited (no, urged!) to make discreet personal enquiries of your excitable correspondent.

Capitalism at work
2005-07-10— Posted by: allegra

Capitalism at work
2005-07-10— Posted by: allegra

enough sleep
2005-07-09— Posted by: allegra

Short sharp blog this morning as I am about to jump in a car and go to the airshow in Arlington. At some point I’m hoping to meet up with coworker Mike and drink beer and coworker Rob of Nine and ditto ditto. If the winds are favorable and the fates propitious I may even get to combine the two. Then back to town to level the playing field, literally, for the hot tub to sit on. Keith had a nice birthday with his dad and has already phoned Paul’s mum to thank her for the birthday gift. Yet another dream about dark old houses with non standard corridors and strange but seemingly normal events. There was a lot of writing in this last one, which is okay. I love the road trip to Arlington, it’s a long standing fave. I’ve been down that road in a brand new Mustang with the top down; I’ve been down that road in brand new rental cars; I’ve been down that road alone, and in a Miata with the top down (thanks Lexi!) and with coworkers who, as soon as the doors closed, started gossiping so hard my eyes nearly bugged out (extremely entertaining and very informative). I’ve been down that road at the speed limit and at a constant 30k over the speed limit, while the driver kvetched about how really, the company was being backward about not paying for the speeding fines as we really were being more efficient. I note that at no point, thanks to Paul’s constantly inculcating me with an insouciant attitude to the prospect of an abrumpt (quoting a departed VP) cessation of vehicular movement, was I worried. And the tunes were crankin’. I’m driving, so I’m happy. Mind you the Echo makes whiny noises if you try to push it past 100k, but o well. Katie at Dax’s, like you didn’t already know. Did you know that elephants can make a surprisingly large range of vocalizations? There’s an elephant in Kenya that imitates trucks, but only at night. Now there’s a solitary vice for you. There’s another elephant that was raised with another species of elephants, and has stopped making the vocalizations of her own species and now chirps like the ‘phants she grew up with. Ah yes. The Eminem of elephants. Did I say that? Time to go.

My spies talk to me
2005-07-09— Posted by: allegra

Personal commentary from one of my spies about Nathan Fillion.

I have redacted the first portion as it was an undignified neener neener about how my spy has shared air with Nathan Fillion, and I haven’t. Quote commences, “….funnier than all get out, and a REALLY nice guy. I’ve worked with him twice now, (show names redacted).

He is most definitely crush-worthy, on every level. Sigh.”

end of quote.

You bet your gorram ass, sigh.

In other news, my doctor’s daughter-in-law’s mother is running for Mayor of Vancouver. (Can you tell my mother does the genealogy thing???) She’d better win. That’s Deb Abbey we’re talking about, and now I’m happy Larry Campbell retired. I wasn’t before, but it’s looking good.

I light a candle for the dead of London. Life is short. Love each other while you can.

‘s no joke
2005-07-09— Posted by: allegra

Snow leopards, c/o Denver Zoo.

2005-07-08— Posted by: allegra

Keith worked very hard yesterday but I guess it didn’t work out – so he’s not working again. Today is his 19th birthday. Paul’s supposed to do something fun with him today.

Katie is ailing with something.

I need help moving a hot tub this Sunday afternoon at one, if you want to volunteer, call me.

Keith is working
2005-07-08— Posted by: allegra

Today was Keith’s first day of paid employment, a day before his nineteenth birthday.

Sigh. I’m so happy, and so proud.

from screenhead
2005-07-08— Posted by: allegra

stolen from someplace else. This is Xander’s coffee. This is Joyce’s decaf. This is Spike’s …. mmmm… blood.

I’m not too good at this
2005-07-07— Posted by: allegra

but I was in a hurry.

enough sleep
2005-07-07— Posted by: allegra

Damn you Brooke! (fisty shaky gesture). I am now SO madly in lust with Nathan Fillion. I am about a third of the way through Firefly and am having a rahhhlly hard time controlling my urge to… oh hell, I think I’ll just indulge myself. Amazing pink and grey sunrise. Must do dishes, kitchen is a sty. Katie must be home, her door is closed and her shoes are here. Excuse me while I titter behind my hand, because I know something that Katie doesn’t know, and when she finds out she’s going to be PPPPPP… choked. Titter. Giggle. I told my mother, the rest of you are going to have to wait, but more news soon. My coworker Patricia told an anecdote yesterday that made me laugh so hard that people in the cafeteria turned around and stared at me, and I laugh really hard every day, so this was a little over the top even for me. Oil is $61 but it isn’t going to affect my traditional way of life. I will say gun ownership is looking more attractive. Still no idea why a coconut ended up in my yard. If somebody tells you to visit a site about Mr. Gisby’s Totally Gay Pet Store, don’t bother, it isn’t that funny. I will say that the collection of 1900 – 1960 mug shots on is perversely satisfying. I got more Sleeman because they are giving away free glasses. Keith bought me sushi yesterday, and I know why, and Katie doesn’t. I have seen the future, and there will briefly be a much higher TV to Work ratio, which will work well for some people. There were bombings in London. I light a candle for the eight, so far, dead, and the wounded. Sometimes it’s better to be dead than wounded but it’s not considered polite to say that.

2019 says it isn’t polite to say that, because it’s ableist. 

I don’t have the car today, and I’m trying not to be all resenty about it. Sigh. But the best thing about today is that the sun come out just about two seconds ago, and that means, I can’t tell you, because Kate doesn’t know yet. Giggle.

what the ffff
2005-07-07— Posted by: allegra

When I went to the car this morning, there was a coconut in my driveway. I remember hearing something really bizarre in the front yard this morning long about 4 ayem but I had no idea that the suspicious muffled clattering was a coconut. Where did it come from? Can such things be?

I’m sitting at home right now sucking back beer and contemplating the other strange thing that happened this morning. I got to work, logged in, blah blah blah, and then looked down and realized I had somehow conveyed a Whole Slug into the office. It was entirely undamaged and serenely making its gooey way across the floor. I picked it up and conveyed it back into the great outdoors. I know I somehow Got It On Me as I was walking past the little waterfall to work, but how did it Get On Me? And how did it Get Off Me without being injured? These are the things that perplex my tiny, acorn like neural tangle.

You’re an Eight.
2005-07-07— Posted by: allegra

Katie is sleeping at Dax’s, according to her mominlaw.

This is a urinal in the shape of a hibiscus.

Can such things be?

shameless plug
2005-07-06— Posted by: allegra

I don’t feel any better, but there’s no reason not to post a funny picture. Stolen from, which I heartily recommend if you have a cat lover on your gift list, and who doesn’t?

2005-07-06— Posted by: allegra

I feel entirely sick at the moment. Katie left the house about 8 pm last night and hasn’t been seen since. I have no idea where she is. She wouldn’t – or couldn’t – pick up the phone last night and did not respond to text messages. Normally she calls. She’s not at Dax’s that I know, having left for a friend of Wendy’s. I at least know where Wendy is and plan on banging on her door later.

I got two pieces of wonderful news last night and now I can’t enjoy either of them, and my eyes aren’t completely unstuck yet – I scarcely slept.

not enough sleep
2005-07-05— Posted by: allegra

Woke up I don’t know when, hitting Paul, in an effort to get him to stop screaming. I’m obviously the cause of all of his troubles; he’s hardly back two days and he’s having nightmares.

Woke up AGAIN to the unmistakable and highly unpleasant sensation of having a bug crawling across me, only I decided to inspect it before I killed it and it turned out to be a ladybug, so I took it to the bathroom window and encouraged its exit from my house.

My mother is back from her eastern perambulations, thank the Goddess in all of her forms; not being able to pick up the phone and call her has been very anxiety inducing, especially with Paul & Keith out of town the entire time as well. My mother doesn’t enjoy travelling, but the seeing relatives including ones she hadn’t seen for half a century was nice.

Current fave news quote
2005-07-05— Posted by: allegra

I kept telling him, ‘The alligator’s coming. Get out! Get out!’

Medicine Heart
2005-07-05— Posted by: allegra

White Buffalo are very special. David Stephenson took the pic.

22 year old cat
2005-07-04— Posted by: allegra

Forgot to mention I shaved a cat yesterday – Callie. I mean, it’s not like that happens everyday. So I had a squirmy squally 22 year old tortoiseshell kitty on my lap while I was going zuzz, zuzz, with the clippers, because her mats are godawful, with Tom L. holding the biting end with his welding gloves on, and then Tom vacuumed me (I really wish somebody had been videotaping that, it must have looked hilarious). I have to say that 22 year old cats who haven’t been grooming themselves well do NOT smell great, and I wasn’t happy until I doffed my duds later in the evening because I couldn’t get rid of the smell until then. After about 7 or 8 minutes she was biting and screeching so hard we figured we’d injure her if we kept it up.

But the best part was finding out she is tortoiseshell all the way down… her skin is the same colour as her fur.

The glorious 4th
2005-07-04— Posted by: allegra

I’m looking forward to seeing more pix of the comet impact.

The Mighty catcher and releaser
2005-07-04— Posted by: allegra

I think John is getting the picture about leaving the goldarned window open so Pokey can come and go. Yesterday around 10 of the clock Pokey caught a juvenile squirrel and pranced up and down the downstairs apartment with it.

Katie got a look of consternation and said, “Pokey’s caught another bird, John’s yelling and I can hear cheeping”. We went downstairs to render what aid we may, and it turned out to be a squillill. (Durrell reference). I thought Tom L. was going to blow a head valve when I told him I had let the squirrel go; he has despatched many of them this year, but I’ve given up – I have karma to repair.

My cats have NEVER caught a squirrel, although I suppose they may have tried; Pokey is both so dumb and so athletic that it never occurs to him not to. I have a picture of him pretending to be a chock for the Echo… I will post it later.

Pokey has been way too busy to take a round out of anybody lately. I saw him sleeping in a corner of the yard… on the concrete… yesterday.

Brooke dreamed a song a couple of days ago. I was favourably impressed.

Tom L. cooked a stupendous pork roast yesterday. Meshuggas with timing meant we were late, and it was still damned good.

Saw the Dalai Jarmo and Susanna yesterday, with the boys – all well, the boys squabbling non stop as per usual – and their boat has a new fuel injected four stroke which doesn’t suck up nearly as much gas. No Hot Springs trips planned. We were there to inspect the camper van for suitability for the road trip to the air show, but I think maybe it will be later in the year.

Anyway, about that window…. if Pokey is going to do what he does, maybe he should be encouraged to do it outside. Otherwise John is going to come home to a serious cleaning problem, and then there’s the issue of other cats figuring out how to get in, with the attendance pandemonium….

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

This boat is not blue – the awning is. Gives a most beautiful and painterly effect. Paul took this pic, also on the camping trip.

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Turtle. Don’t know which species.

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Camping pix
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Paul got some great pictures.

Tennesseeing is believing
2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

This cow stuck her head in a tree and was still patiently standing there when the vet (John Brunner, amusingly enough), a tractor and a wholelottalube showed up. This took place near Milton, Tennessee and was reported in the Murfreesboro Tennessee Daily News Journal. Apart from a scrape to the back of one ear the cow was none the worse for her remarkable demonstration of curiosity. The hole has since been closed.

2005-07-03— Posted by: allegra

Sh…. don’t tell anyone, but Marilyn just phoned and asked me if I really wanted to come for dinner seeing as how Paul was arriving tonight, and I owned that I would really rather see Paul, even if she is a stupendous cook (and I wanted to pick Glenn’s brains too about the site). I will, therefore, be waiting here when Paul gets home (if he doesn’t call me to let me know he’s landed, in which case I’ll go get him.)

Line dried sheets and freshly cut grass will be waiting for him, therefore…

2005-07-02— Posted by: allegra

So I learned something about the dream world last night. I learned that if somebody hands me a cup of coffee, I wake up.

So I’m minding my own business, the way I do in dreamworld, because it’s just not a good idea to start opening doors, and I end up on this boat that was built a long time ago. It’s very large and the corridors don’t meet on the square and it’s remarkably spiffy as far as fittings are concerned. We go cruising through something that looks like a cross between the Gulf and the Thousand Islands, and there’s this frikking naked giant huddled in a ball on an island (which he dwarfs) really trying hard to look inconspicuous. He can’t though, I mean he’s about twice the size of my house. I ask my companion, a slender woman in nondescript clothing who appears to be in her late twenties – whom I have never seen before – what gives, and she says: He was a really bad piano player and this is his punishment (subtext – beats shooting him, I s’pose). How bad is bad? I say, thinking this is a bit much, and she shows me a piece of promo he put together which indicates that he has a piece of promo, but not that he can play piano, and he got this cruise line gig, but he’s useless; he can’t even play “Feelings”. Now to my way of thinking this is not negative, but whatever. Then she handed me a cup of coffee… dang, I could smell it…. and I woke up.

You know, of course that you’re not supposed to take food from the hands of the dead, in dreams, because it’s how they claim you. But she was alive; I wonder who she is and if I’ll meet her soon. I have dreamed the faces of people I haven’t met before. One turned out to be my grade 10 math teacher, but you can’t have everything.

Enniwess, I assume that all this boat crap has something to do with watching the ferry crash on Thursday. I’ve been thinking about it a lot. It really seemed like the classic Canadian accident; millions of dollars of damage; no fatalities.

Bucketing rain when I got up this morning. Katie still at Dax’s.

John says we nearly beat the record for a gloomy June… more overcast than is normal and in fact five more hours of sunshine this month that it would have taken to beat the record. Me, I’m happy every time it rains. It fills the reservoirs and prevents fires. Although Criminy, my grass is growing like it’s training for some form of horticultural Olympics.

Keith told Katie on the phone the other day that he has a most excellent tan. Katie is now saying she’ll go next time, but I know perfectly well that she won’t go because (this part deleted, cause I’ll get my butt kicked).

Here come a twister
2005-07-02— Posted by: allegra

From Coaldale Alberta last week. Happy Canada Day!

enough sleep
2005-07-01— Posted by: allegra

Shown are Terry, Clare, Tish and a small black bear. This is someplace around Grundy Lake close to Sudbury, but I don’t have anything more specific than that… like a GPS reference. Paul emailed me another picture, purportedly of a mink playing in some water, but it didn’t matter how hard I squinted, I couldn’t see anything. Like a frikkin Margaret Atwood poem, mutter mutter.

enough sleep
2005-07-01— Posted by: allegra

Received the sad news that Cody, Sandy’s oldest dog, died yesterday. I emailed her saying I was sorry and that he was a good dog, and her response says it all: “I beg to differ. He was a great dog.”

Keith and Paul have delayed their return by one day; the flights today just suck, so tomorrow is looking like a better bet and Tish and Terry wanted them to stay another day anyway.

Watched both of the Bill and Ted movies last night and ate dinner over at Suzanne’s. Katie of course spent the night. Woe = parenthood! Katie was describing a dream the day before yesterday and said that she went home in the dream. It was clear from context that Home meant Dax/Suzanne’s place. She looked apologetic for about 30 nanoseconds, then looked impatient. “Home is where Dax is,” she said.

Pic is from our beach walk last fall.

This is really cute, but not for dialup. No, I’m not going to do a link. Checking links is such a pain in the ass. And I’m about to get emails about how to automate checking links, I can just tell.

Ato the Praying Panther
2005-07-01— Posted by: allegra

She’s at a zoo in Japan, and she’s apparently praying for rain. Credit Mainichi Shinbun, again. I was going to post pix of Albino Cobras, but you’d be looking at it all month long, and I prefer pussercats.

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Born when atmospheric carbon was 316 PPM. Settled on MST country since 1997. Parent, grandparent.

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