Monday, January 19, 2009

Warning: a love story with graphic content (no, not that kind)

Storm, in the lineup of The Usual Suspects I posted awhile back, suddenly began to drop off noticeable weight a couple of weeks ago. The next day he couldn't keep food down. The day after that he stopped eating altogether. Having to attend a funeral followed by the vet's day off, I got the next available appointment.

That morning I took Storm out back to get a stool sample. The poop that emerged got stuck leaving Storm tearing around the yard trying to shake it loose, the clump smacking against his hind legs and tail making an awful mess. I ran inside to get gloves, grabbed his collar and gently pulled on the poop. A clump about two feet long came sliding out like on those National Geographic calving videos and I stood there horrified that he'd pooped out his intestines.

Between sobs, I cleaned us both up, put the whole clump in a plastic bag, grabbed a leash, and headed for the car, expecting the worst.

The waiting room was filled. I left the bag with the receptionist and we worked our way to a bench in the corner. At least there was the distraction of chatter about the dogs, cats and one goat there with ailments or injuries or needing a checkup.

Then the vet tech called out, "Skye? Are you missing a rug or a really long stuffed toy?"

It turned out that all my rugs were present and accounted for but, blood work, x-rays, a ravenous but exhausted dog and $206 later, an inventory count back home noted a missing two-foot-long furry.

It could have been worse. Even if he'd made it through a second such surgery (a couple of years ago he was cut open from stomach to butt to recover a very long knotted up strand of used gauze he'd swiped from the garbage), it would have cost me a (so to speak) shitload of money if he hadn't pooped it out in the nick of time.

Not quite funny yet, the blood work came back that his body isn't absorbing protein. A case of special canned food, liquid triglycerides, Prednizone and a vet check in two weeks, the jury's still out.

The poor receptionist whose job was to sort through the two-foot-long poop cheerfully told me about her own nut job dog. She said he ate a basketball but nobody knew for sure (as long as he kept eating they weren't going to cut him open) while he pooped and spit up pieces of rubber until one big piece came out with the word SPAULDING printed across it.

These "kids" as I call them really know how to pull our heartstrings or none of us would be pulling poop out of their butts or cleaning up after they puked all over the Oriental rug just back from the cleaners, again.

My big kids, two Siberian Huskies and six German Shepherds I've had over the years, are giving way to smaller ones, my daughter's introduction of the Japanese Shiba Inu that looks like a fox or a German Shepherd pup that never grows up. I like that they can be bathed in the sink and don't take up the whole bed. But they're an even more primitive breed than Huskies and very pack oriented. Instead of pulling poop, I'm pulling them off each other. Good thing they have curled tails for handles.

I've been fostering Shibas for the past year and adopted two of the fosters from the NYC Shiba Rescue, These two are also in The Usual Suspects lineup, but I've been feeling a bit misty-eyed today and wanted to get this on the blog.

My latest addition, Dylan.

And the joyfulness of two buddies sharing some quality time:

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Poison ivy on my butt and other concerns

A subject on the guitar forum: List "odd" things that bother you. My off-the-cuff response:

- The little pieces of toilet paper on the floor of public bathrooms that stick to my shoes when I leave.

- When peeing in the woods, worrying about getting poison ivy on my butt.

- Having to maintain strong thigh muscles to squat in public bathrooms and to prevent poison ivy on my butt.

- Old people who buy enormous cars and can't see over the steering wheel. (Maybe it's for the really wide rear window to show off their hat collection.)

- People who don't know the difference between "their" and "there".

- Ice cream containers that have all been sneakily shrunken in size (other products, too.)

- The strange phenomenon that young guys can wear pants halfway down their boxers that stay put and older guys with beer guts and butt cracks can't keep their pants up when the waistline is up to their necks. (Both bother me.)

- The little hard brown shells in popcorn that get stuck between my teeth and gums.

- The societal impression that only men fart or belch or that men have such an excess of saliva, they must spit on a regular basis.

- Being afraid the suction thingy at the dentist's will suck up my tongue (and embarrassed by the awful sound it makes, like my mouth is farting.)

- Having men as total strangers come up and tell me I shouldn't "chew" my fingernails but let them grow long and beautiful and have nail polish on them when, first, it's none of their friggin' business and, second, I TRIM my nails to be able to play the friggin' guitar.

- Super pointy shoes by male designers when I've yet to find a similar pointy foot in all humanity.

- When I've been talking rather colorfully all night and my date takes me to a bar - someone says one little four-letter-word and my date yells back, "Hey buddy, knock it off! Can't you see there's a lady present?"

- When people in the audience shout "PLAY FREE BIRD!!" I hate Free Bird.

Monday, January 12, 2009

And a grande time was had by all

There's something really wrong about this. From the souvenir shop of the Woodstock Museum at Bethel Woods, the site of the 1969 Woodstock Festival:
A "mini-latte make-love-not-war mug"

I grew up in the Sixties. I went to Woodstock - the original (who would have thought I'd have to clarify that.) Lattes? WTF? Next they'll be warning us about the bad brown antacid.

Just to be clear:
There was no merchandise for sale at Woodstock (or Coke or Pepsi for that matter.)
Few people even thought to bring a camera.
There was no valet parking.
No "seating".
Few porta-johns.
Plenty of trees.
No showers.
Plenty of rain (and lakes.)
No gourmet food.
No health food.
No food in general.
No bottled water.
Plenty of drugs.
A fair amount of people.
Some pretty spectacular bands.

That's about all I remember.