18 April 2009

And then there were four

We put Zoe to sleep this morning. She was 15 and so thin and wasted - it had been a very long time since she was able to do more than eat, sleep and growl. Her whiskers were falling out. She still hadn't grown back the hair on her paw from where she was shaved last summer after a blood sugar collapse.

We were with her while she died. The vet will normally put a catheter in and then administer the drug while you are there with the pet, but her veins were in such terrible shape and her blood pressure and circulation were so bad that they couldn't get a catheter in.

We ended up having to hold her down while the vet injected the drug directly into a vein in her thigh. She struggled but she didn't have much fight left in her. Pretty quickly her head started to droop and then her heart stopped and I could tell from her eyes that she had left us. I wish I could believe in heaven so I could believe that that's where she went. I guess I will have to content myself with knowing that she is the earth's pet now.


Oh Zoe. I miss how you used to groom my hair until it was soaking wet and disgusting. I miss how you wanted to be on my lap and purr even when it was 95 degrees out. I miss playing baseball with you - you had such good aim batting away toys. I miss you curled up on my chest, purring for hours while we both napped. I miss the funny little hairs between your toes. I miss your people-food-stealing mischievousness. I miss you. I know it's better that you aren't in pain all the time now. I know we made the right, kind decision. But it's still hard.


Update: I love this picture of baby Zoe and baby Dave. Kittens together.

16 April 2009

Happiness is

singing along to Passenger Side while drinking whiskey with only the cats to hear.

This right here is made of awesome. I think it's actually better than the original - the video definitely beats Robert Smith clawing at the air and lying on the floor singing.

In case you are not familiar with the original.

In what may not be a coincidence, Simone is currently lying in my lap purring and biting my typing fingers. That's the signal that I have to go be a crazy cat lady for a while. Plus the whiskey needs a refill.

13 April 2009


Finally on its way.


09 April 2009

Um, ew. And etc.

After I finished listening to Jane Eyre I started listening to Sense and Sensibility. Marianne comes down with a "putrid fever", which sounds gross, and almost dies. I've read Sense and Sensibility quite a few times, but I don't think I've read it since before Google. I always wondered what exactly a "putrid fever" was, but until now I didn't have the internet to help me find out.

Turns out putrid fevers are also known as typhus. Jane Austen and one of her sisters nearly died of it, which is how she was so familiar with the disease. 'Hey,' I thought, 'typhus is what the pupils at Jane Eyre's school get. What is typhus though? Is it like typhoid?'. Nope. It's an infection (treated nowadays with antibiotics) that's spread by body lice. EW EW EW EW EW. That totally clashes with my image of that era in history as being full of well-clothed, well spoken ladies and gents - basically as I listened to the book I was picturing the Ang Lee movie with Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet, so finding out that the characters and their author were all crawling with lice was kind of a shock. It makes sense, of course, given the lack of running water and central heating at the time, but still. EW.

Next I am going to listen to Dombey and Son. At least Dickens was upfront about the effects of poor sanitation (the graveyard description in Bleak House, for example.)

But back to Austen. Listening to Sense and Sensibility I realized that not only are admirable male characters rare in Austen (most of the good men are kind of waxwork models of piety and virtue, Mr. Darcy and Mr. Knightly being the exceptions), but that it's all about the inner lives and landscape of women. I guess I knew that already, but I was finally like, 'Oh! That's why lots of men don't enjoy reading her - she's not writing for them.' Well, duh, right? Except that as a woman, of course I grew up reading all kinds of books which focus on the male experience (David Copperfield, Treasure Island, Tom Jones, Boswell's Life of Johnson - the list is endless) - because those books are so much more common than the female-centered ones - so it never occurred to me to be bored by reading about the experiences of men. I'd have run out of books pretty quickly.

Moving on. I've been reading (really reading, I mean, not listening) Hilary Mantel. She is wonderful - very dark and very funny. I'm on my third of her books and I admire her writing tremendously.

In other news, all five cats are still around and I'm/we're still agonizing over Zoe. I posted a question about euthanasia to the blog of a vet that I really like. Here's his answer. Definitely not easy. I do think Zoe's in pain, though our vet didn't agree the last time we saw him, and will try the painkiller test on her.

Somehow it's 8:30 already and I still need to vacuum (we are drowning in a sea of litter), clean the catboxes, and do my taxes (argh). And get to bed early, 'cause I need to be in the office by 8 tomorrow.

03 April 2009


So I have been reading Sarah Vowell intermittently since Christmas when Dave got me three of her books as gifts. It was a good choice on his part because I totally love her. I was laughing on the T while I read it on the trip home. This paragraph just killed me:

The professor asked if anyone had read Camus. I, of course, had read L'Etranger in the original French, and raised my hand.* I mentioned the protagonist who doesn't care about his mother's death. Then I said that I often washed dishes with my mom. When she'd hand me a knife to dry, I would have the fleeting thought that it would be pretty easy to kill her if I wanted. I should mention that I usually sat in the back, so when I said this about a hundred heads whipped around to stare at me. What I should have said was, "But I don't want to kill her!" What I actually said was, "Oh, like you never thought about killing your mom."

How can you not love this woman? Plus I am always the one who ends up with my whole department staring at me like another head has shot up out of my neck. I work in marketing, which isn't quite as full of kids who were popular in high school as sales departments tend to be, but marketing is full of the kids who were the ultra cool ones wearing all black and smoking cigarettes back behind the gym. Thus they seem shocked every time when I come out with some amusing anecdote about that time my first husband went on a three day drinking binge and came home perched happily inside a garbage truck. My feeling is that it's a fucking great story and I tell it well; their feeling is that I've had some crazy wild life and it's sort of in poor taste to mention it. So it's always nice to read someone else who is okay with admitting their own humilations.

Speaking of the trip home, I had promised Dave that I'd leave work promptly at 6 so I could be home at 7 so I could see his face for a few minutes before he left to play a gig. I of course didn't leave work at 6 - I left at something more like 6:20, because I was shooting the shit with my boss, who I like a lot. (Don't get me wrong, I really like everyone I work with. They just all think I'm nuts.) As I walked to the subway, I uttered a little prayer that the trains would cooperate and I'd get home near 7 anyway and not at like 7:30, which would have totally pissed Dave off.

Then I wondered who I was praying to, since I don't believe in God, and decided that maybe I had proven that there were no atheists in foxholes. Then I wondered why I don't believe in God, and remembered that it's because I can't get past that whole bad-things-happening-to-god-people thing. Then I wondered if, supposing there really is a God, if I was going to hell for not believing. The trains did cooperate and as I pulled into my last stop I thought to say thanks just in case but then wondered if the perhaps-God who might have helped me out with the trains could hear me from underground. As if God's reception is limited like the T-Mobile network. And then I made a conscious decision to stop thinking about theological matters and listened to Sense and Sensibility on the walk home instead.

*I too read this in the original French and would also have raised my hand.


How stupid can you get? Some family stole a bunch of stuff and boasted about it on national TV, then got busted. Jesus. It reminds me of the time my sister's credit card number was stolen online - they caught the thief because he had his ill-gotten gains shipped directly to his house.

When I worked in retail, we used to see shoplifters all the time. When I first started the job, I asked my boss how to spot them. "It's easy," he said. "They act in a suspicious manner." And they do! I guess if you're lazy and stupid and venial enough to think thievery is preferable to an actual job, it doesn't occur to you to try to act normal when trying to get away with it.

01 April 2009

Not at all related to April Fool's

I think the baby snuggie thing is actually a photoshop disaster and not a detachable fleecy alien womb, but you have to admit the similarities are great:

The mom looks a lot happier about the situation than Kane.

hat tip to Pandagon for opening my eyes.