Tuesday, January 27, 2015

I don't want a smartphone

I got a new phone today. 

For most of my cell phone life, I've had the bottom of the line, or close to it, except a brief flirtation with a basic-model smartphone 2011-2012. 

I found the smartphone annoying, the email alert was constantly alerting me to all the spam in my in-box.  The touchscreen was a hassle. 

My hands will shake, and/or "get dumb" at times, not working the way I'd like them to.  I can still work, blog, take care of myself, the cats, and Ron.  I'm OK.  But the touchscreen proved frustrating. 

When my old phone died I didn't cry, I just got a basic model flip phone, which I've used for 2 years.  It works fine. 

However, a lot of people in my family, and life, like to text.  I didn't have a touchscreen or a keyboard, so I went through ordeals of pressing buttons and selecting letters.  It's tiresome. 

Even my repairman likes to text. 

So, I had an eye out for a phone w/ keyboard.  I didn't have any joy.  They were all either completely basic models, similar to my own, or rocketship control panel smart phones. 

Did I mention I drop my phone?  A lot? 

I don't want a smartphone.  Tmobile had nothing. 

Amazon had nothing - nothing I wanted.  I was looking for an unlocked phone I could use with Tmobile, or a "proper" Tmobile phone. 

A few days ago, I got the bright idea to look at other phones - from other companies, and I quickly found this:  Altair 2.  Perfect.  Simple keyboard.  NOT a smartphone, but had music, video, camera, custom ringtones, etc. 

I told Ron about it, and the price, $50.  I saw they had really good plans starting at $25. 

I also saw they had a "switch" program with 4 free months for me, when I left Tmobile.  Am I married to them?  No. 

Today Ron wanted to go to the mall.  He likes one of the food vendors.  I was happy to take him because he's really been great about the kittens, etc.  He has also been really careful drinking. 

I looked around a little first, and found a Cricket kiosk.  I got a look at the phone, and liked it.  We ended up switching my account. 

Not only is the phone mine, and completely paid-for, I have a new plan for half the cost of the old.  Ron's happy.  I'm happy. 

Ron needs a feature called "Future delivery messaging" - where he can record a message and have it delivered to himself, in the future "Don't forget Heather has a doctor's appointment tomorrow".  It's a digital dayplanner.  He thought Tmobile was the only company to provide them - wrong. 

Ron can save a lot of money.  They even have a talking flip phone, which would be great for Ron.  His current plan is $50.  He could certainly go to the $25 like I have. 

Hey, money's money.  I don't mind saving. 

Speaking of money, one of the clients on our vehicle made a big production about us being self employed, with a lot of envious comments.  Hey, I pay for my life.  I battle complete insanity every hour of the day, and it's hell.  I have brain damage rendering me unable to drive.  Ron paid for our house with his own blood and mobility.  I have to be bright, smart, and clever in order to manage the vending machines, even when I feel like my brain's full of glue. 

We work hard, sweating our way through our workday (well, me, mainly).  I push heavy handcarts and deal with furious customers.  I earn my money, what I make, which is far less than they think. 

Everyone forgets we don't drive, so that thousand or so they are accustomed to putting into car expenses can pay other bills.  We can live a lot cheaper than you. 

Add to that, we only keep about 20% of what we make.  The rest goes to overhead, taxes, supplies, driver, program fees, etc. 

Sigh.  It's just tiresome.  Ron said, basically "I hate it when people ask me personal questions about my business.  It's none of your damned business and we're not rich." 

"What I hate" I added "is when someone wants us to hire someone completely unsuitable.  We own a business, therefore we're just going to hand out a paycheck to anyone.  If I hire someone, it's not going to be some guy with a felony theft record."  (Our last "referral")

Our driver got really upset, and tried to say that "stealing from a store" (or business!  Like OURS!) wasn't as bad as "Robbing someone at the corner".  I said yes, there are various legal definitions, but theft is theft, and "I'm not letting anyone with a theft problem near my merchandise."  She got all huffy. 

I guess she had the perfect candidate in mind, just like several of our other drivers.  Just once I'd like to have someone say "My cousin just got back from a 3 year mission trip to Guatemala, building houses for the poor.  He needs a part time job for a year or so before he goes back.  He has a truck, can work hard - like he did overseas, and was really impressed when I told him about you.  Even if you're not interested in him, he'd still like to meet you, Ron."  Sigh. 

However, should the need arise, I'm sure God will send him. 

About our driver, the last time we had her she complained she was really hungry.  Looking at her, I figured she probably had a blood sugar issue.  I scrounged something up and gave it to her (a pickup from home).  Today, she picked us up at the mall and was furious we hadn't bought her a meal. 

WTF?  I'm your waiter now? 

She pouted for miles.  I didn't care.  I was just happy I kept my mouth shut.  

As you know, occasionally, very occasionally, I will bag up candy with scripture booklets and hand that out to the drivers.  I get resentful, though, when a driver pulls up and demands candy before he even gets out of his seat.  I just tell them, sorry, I'm out, and leave Ron sitting on the curb as I sit down.  If they continue to complain, Ron will make acid comments about it not being our job to feed them, adults should bring their own lunch, etc. 

It's a gift - not an obligation.  I am not obligated to feed you just because you are driving me around.  You are making a living wage doing so.  Without us, you're unemployed.  If I choose to do something nice accept it, but don't demand it or you'll never see it again. 

Ugh.  I am obligated to assist Ron as needed, being his care provider; load my own packages, behave politely; and wear a seatbelt.  That's it.  Ron is required to provide ID and a proper fare, accept the restraints (they tie him up like a bad bondage movie, not that I've seen one, when he rides in the wheelchair), and behave politely while riding.  That's it. 

It's not our job to buy you lunches, hire your loser brother, and share all the mega-bucks you think we make.  Ha. 

They make a lot more than we do. 

Happily the headache's about gone now. 

My lunch, or my meds, taken soon after, triggered a pretty horrific headache.  I started my cycle yesterday so I don't know what's going on - I should be in my "easy" period without headaches. 

If that's the worst I'll take it. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Pencil in some fun

I feel rich.  I got cuddles from both Torbie (my old lady) and Gravy (little boy) today.  As I held Gravy, I said "Look at your fat little tummy!"  Ron objected, I explained, for a cat starving a week ago, a fat little tummy is a very good thing. 

The boys have been great.  They are settling in wonderfully.  We just need to get them fixed.  I gave them their Advantage too. 

The Girls got their worm medicine (Baby Girl had tapeworms), and the vet wanted me to wait a few days before the Advantage for them - which I'll do tomorrow. 

The boys like to walk on my keyboard - that's the worst problem I've got.  They are keeping the 2 commandments: No biting.  No pissing. 

I scoop the boxes daily and keep it all fresh. 

The boys are indoors and I hope remain so.  I want them to get some street smarts before they venture outside. 

One of my drivers was having a tough time.  She brought us home.  Gravy got out when I opened the door so I brought him over (I know she likes cats).  She had a fun time petting him for a minute. 

Biscuit and Gravy like being held for short periods.  I am always careful to put them down before they struggle, so it's fun for them.  They are happy to be held and purr loudly. 

They are very bonded - I have never seen two animals with a tighter bond, and love to chase each other all over the house.  I approve, they're not bothering the Girls. 

I tend to get a little weird about the neighbors, and noise.  Last night I got a lot weird because it was actually quiet when I needed to sleep.  I slept pretty well. 

I got up at 3 AM and went to work.  We got our delivery.  The delivery guy was really nice.  I stocked, we didn't need much but sales are good.  I also helped Ron with his stuff. 

Wherever I am, "helping Ron" is part of it. 

We had the right amount of time to do everything without sitting around.  We had a good ride home. 

I had to help Ron with accounting stuff for a while (and just a while ago).  Then I got a nice nap.  I figured, sleep as late as I can, which I did.  It was about 3 hours.  Not bad considering I only got about 6 hours sleep the night before. 

I got up, moderately depressed... ate some pudding.  I forgot to mention Biscuit is very pushy when it comes to people food.  He loves any kind of dairy. 

I kept pushing him away, then I let him have the traces of pudding in the container.  I took my medication and watched a little TV.  Organized a little.  Sat down, ended up with Torbie in my lap for an hour and a half.  That was awesome. 

I got pretty stiff about the time she moved.  She's a very perceptive cat. 

Pudding and lithium are a bad duo.  I got pretty queasy.  When Torbie left I drank some Pepto.  

Gravy thought the lap looked fun, so I got some attention from him, too.  I also watched them curled up together on the couch as I had Torbie in my lap, 18 inches away. 

I don't want a lot of cats.  God knows I don't want any more.  I do have a family, though. 

Still tired; still depressed.  The two, of course, are related. 

I'll try to pencil in some "fun" tomorrow. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

None of my business

Yesterday morning, I head the puppy whining and yelping around 3  AM.  "I thought we were past this", I thought irritably, as I rolled over and went back to sleep.  I got ready for work - truck day, and made sure I had my "spiffy" neon green back brace with matching suspenders. 

As I left the house, I realized the "Mom" mobile was gone next door.  Ah, they must have left early.  Why does a Mom leave the house at 3 AM?  Either she, or the baby is sick.  Flu is EVERYWHERE, and you may recall me mentioning she looked pretty rough the other day. 

I put up a prayer request, because God does want us to pray for everyone in need, especially those (we feel) aggravate us.  Done.  I also prayed some after I went to bed. 

The vehicle is back today, so I guess they are alright.  I just pray whoever it is recover from whatever it is, quickly. 

I did have a question for a driver yesterday.  "Everytime the kids next door go out to play, one of the little ones always gets hurt and cries for 10 minutes or so.  Is that normal?" 

She said, she thought so, especially if the big kids were playing rough.  I do know this, in my childhood I never came in crying and injured, playing with my older (step) siblings.  I'd get my bumps and scrapes at school (one bully liked to push me down on the asphalt).  Never, to my recollection, while playing with "the sibs".   The worst thing they'd do is "ditch" me, run off and hide so I couldn't pester them. 

Huh.  Opinions?  And yes, it's none of my damned business. 

I did find it sad, while the kids were playing "outside", they were on the trampoline.  The dog was left to run around on the ground as the kids played on the bouncer.  I don't see a lot of kid & dog interaction, which is really sad for a family with 6 kids. 

[sigh]  I do wonder what will happen this year, with the dog. 

So we went to the warehouse.  I got Ron's stuff, and mine. 

We got the stuff loaded, went to work, unload.  The guys (Ron and our driver) were cold.  I get very warm when I am active, thanks to menopause/Wellbutrin so I loved it.  I unloaded onto 2 handcarts and a long folding handcart. 

We went into work, and stocked it.  The bottled vendor was naughty but I fixed it - I had to remove the coin mechanism assembly, turn it upside down, and whack it, to get out some jammed coins.  It worked, I pray.  I hope it worked.   I pray a lot over vending machines. 

When we left, everything looked good.  We came home.  The kids were making a huge uproar next door, but it's a nice day and at least one parent was gone (they had a babysitter). 

Ron had scheduled a "date night" at Carl's Jr.  I accepted.  We had a nice date.  He felt the Teriyaki Chicken, while "good", wasn't something he'd order again.  He remarked the BBQ chicken was better.  "Remember" I told him "You last ate that 23 years ago" - it's just about 23 years since we met. 

I had my favorite Western Bacon Cheeseburger.  In fact, 22 years ago I had a terrible kidney infection.  Fever of 104.  A week in the hospital horribly queasy and vomiting, on IV antibiotics. 

The minute I was released, my appetite regained, I had the cab go through the Carl's Jr drive through and got a double Western. 

We had a good time, just the right amount, and a good ride home.  It was pretty quiet.  I basically went to bed early after doing cat care stuff. 

With 4 cats, I have to clean that litter every day.  I have 4 boxes.  If I could figure out where to put another, I would.  They seem OK though. 

The boys were cute and cuddly.  They make a lot of noise when they play so Ron can hear them, he loves it.  They were raising hell in the bathtub this morning. 

Gravy had an abscess by his tail, so Ron can feel the scar, and tell them apart.  If someone wants a cuddle, though, I just give it to them.  I don't have to know who's who every second of the day.  It's a baby.

Gravy has a white and gray tail.  Biscuit's is solid gray.  

I called Mom and Dad, went to bed. 

I slept pretty well.  I won't get enough sleep tonight, as we have to get up very early tomorrow.  If it were truly miserable weather, I could probably manage, but people will be up, active, and making noise on a nice weekend day.  I'm surprised it's so quiet now. 

We do have a trip to Home Depot.  I want some seeds, and some polyurethane spray for my walking stick (hasn't arrived yet). 

I'm glad I ordered the walking stick.  The health department is reporting a stray lab mix (dog) tested positive for rabies. 

Some of my seeds arrived yesterday and went in the fridge.  Heat, light, and moisture will kill seeds, that's why it's important to buy them the minute you can.  Don't buy them off a rack that's been sitting outside in the garden center, in full sun. 

I know I want to grow some pole beans and a collard this year.  One collard provides more than enough greenery for me, I pick off bottom leaves only, which allows the plant to keep growing.  It takes them a couple of years in our climate, before they'll go to seed.  "Georgia" has been very productive for me. 

For pole beans, a "Rattlesnake" - did great, years ago; and "Kentucky Blue" - a new hybrid of two old favorites that has everyone raving.  I can manage a collard and pole beans, especially since I have a yard guy. 

I might throw a kale in there, too.  I like the red kale.  It is very rugged - that one got over 5 feet tall, completely neglected, in a drought, and lived for several years. 

Imagine what it'd do with proper care. 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Let's go to the doctor

I woke up with two sweet little kittens.  The dog was pretty quiet last night.  It made some noise after I got up, but I reminded myself "Hey, you're already up.  Shut up.  It could be a lot worse." 

I had a nice shower and God Time. 

The cats are all very healthy per the vet.  She did treat them for worms, which I suspected.  They don't have earmites, though, but fleas.  Easy enough to treat with Advantage.  Kitten blood test came back negative for cat AIDS.  Stool test came back negative for all bad things.  The big girls, however, have tapeworm (I knew, as I'd seen some traces), also easily fixed with Advantage. 

I was right, should have brought a kitten turd.  She'd love one next time (the vet).  Seems like an odd gift. 

All the cats loved the vet and were pretty well behaved.   We got free Kitten Advantage.  I also bought plenty for the girls. 

The kittens had "pretty bad" fleas.  Biscuit screamed when the vet held him down for a blood sample.  Poor Gravy got probed, I held him after, and got poop on my shirt.  Oh, well. 

I have a lot of reasons to wear cheap clothes.  I'll wash it out, if I can't, I'll toss it. 

Ron had a very bad night with neuropathy; which is absolutely related to the drinking.  We went to Walmart first this morning.  We came home and spent a couple of hours.  Ron got the appointment time mixed up, thought it was 3.  He told me to put the cats in the carriers at 2.  I did.  Then he got upset and said he meant "more like 2:30".  He had been drinking when we got home from Walmart and fell asleep with his phone off.  Then he didn't check his messages.

The appointment was at 2.  The office called and said not to come in, they had an emergency (something involving a dog, I'd guess, because of the barking).

Ron, in the meantime, thinks our appointment is 3.  Has told me so, as well.  Has called for a cab.  The guy who picked up clearly hated cats.  They always do when I'm traveling with a cat.

I couldn't fit the wheelchair in the trunk.  For some reason, it just didn't work.  I was ready to scream.  I had 4 cats screaming in their carriers, an aggravated cab driver, and Ron yelling.  I finally traded the wheelchair for the walker, which worked fine.  

You can imagine the scene when we showed up.  The vet was pretty pissed, so were the staff.  They were still very professional and nice to the cats. 

We all got to wait in an exam room for 2 hours.  4 cats and two humans.  

We had the visit/exam. 

The vet told us not to get any more cats.  I didn't want the last two, but I couldn't leave them to die. The shelters still have a pretty high kill rate.  Biscuit and Gravy are very bonded - it would be cruel to break them up. 

I don't feel bad about taking them; and what we paid for the exam, etc, they're certainly "ours" now.  They are 4 pounds, not 2.  They are about 4 months old, twice what I thought.  They purred at the vet right after she gave them shots, and let her sneak a cuddle. 

Torbie and Baby Girl were surprisingly good.  They just cringed a little at first, allowed petting, and  actually enjoyed the contact.  The vet kept talking about our nice cats. 

Yup, they're good babies. 

Happily, we had a much better trip home. 

It's just a little sad and frustrating for me: Ron caused this whole drama because he chose to drink and be irresponsible today.  He caused all today's physical pain because he won't stop drinking; and I've told him drinking aggravates neuropathy. 

I need a day off after my day off.  Tomorrow is truck day. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Well, the cats are going great.  The kittens raised all sorts of hell while we went to work.  I came home to find my pill organizer on the floor, pills everywhere.  The kittens seem fine so I don't think they ate any. 

I slept pretty well, one "bark attack" next door last night, for a while.  "I think" I told Ron "The dog gets excited when he sees the humans awake, and starts barking".  None of the other neighborhood dogs bark at the same time, so, to me, it's a personal issue.  Overall it is very quiet.  It's a friendly breed. 

#6 (the man) stayed home today and had another car over while his wife ran errands.  The dog was very quiet, so I was happy. 

I slept in, until about 8.  I did my God Time and opted against a workout.  I have played around the edges of a headache all day. 

Ron's cat came back in the house, and has been supervising kitten play.  She isn't acting fearful, or aggressive, anymore.  My cat actually lay down on the couch with the kittens.  She'd hiss if they touched her, but she was sniffing them (Ron's cat is also sniffing).  Very promising. 

The food aggression (growling at nearby cats while eating) has also abated.  Good. 

Even better, we went to work, and got the vending machine fixed!  The repairman came by anyway to check my work (I always welcome a second opinion).  He made a minor adjustment.  I saw several people getting their bottled sodas tonight so I'm happy.  My other machines looked fine, but I loaded the cold food machine. 

I figure with lousy, cold, weather, we might get a little more business.

One guy came up to us and asked us, point blank, why we "work those hours when you don't have to.  Why don't you just work mornings only?" 

"You're here!" I told him.  He grinned. 

The way I see it, and I love this about Ron, he agrees: if my business is open 24/7, if my customers are there 24/7, on three shifts, I need to be there for all of them.  I don't need to work 24 hours a day.  But I need to work varying times of day to ensure I am serving everyone. 

The customers really appreciate it. 

And, overall, they're really a fun bunch. 

I was glad we handled all that.

Our ride home was horrific.  1.  The driver played head games.  If you told her to turn left, she'd go straight, and then get an attitude at you for "giving bad directions" or "Why didn't you tell me?"  2.  She kept promulgating cult doctrine.  Ick.  3.  She got very confused, very easily, and wouldn't let it go, working herself into hysterias then going back to the head games.  4.  Massive attitude, about EVERYTHING.  5.  She also made some nasty, envious, remarks when she saw our house.  We have a very modest home.  It's a nice neighborhood, but a very modest home. 

She rode us around for over and hour and 40 minutes, for a trip that ought to have taken a half hour. 

It was exhausting.  Ron began getting queasy from her driving style - very lurchy - sudden swerves to the left and right, and histrionics while driving. 

Ron told her he was queasy and she suddenly became a lot more professional, getting us home in 10 minutes.  That's really frustrating. 

Some, a very small percentage, of drivers decide to abuse what little "power" they have, forcing the clients to endure pointlessly long trips, tirades, dramatics, head games, verbal abuse, etc.  They never last. 

Ron and I recently found out we can call and make a request, not to get the driver again.  We did so.

So, I got home and now it's practically bedtime.  Tomorrow should be interesting.  I will tell you more as it happens.  

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

I have lived in very bad neighborhoods.  In one, I had to cross the street when I went home everyday because the pit bull kept trying to eat my face.  It was extremely aggressive.  Most alarming, it could "almost" get over the fence. 

We called the landlord and asked him to "do a check, so you don't get sued".  I actually witnessed the landlord park his vehicle, walk over to the fence, and look into the "yard".  The dog came right at him and the guy had to leap back.  They were evicted that day. 

Other times, I'd find a guy with a large, aggressive dog, on my walk.  No leash.  It would act in a very menacing manner, hackles up, growling, and the owner would say "Oh, he won't bite."  Then laugh. 

Yeah, you aren't even here legally.  You have absolutely zero assets.  What do you care if he bites?  I can't sue you.  

These were always terrible neighborhoods; where an aggressive dog is a status symbol.

We bought a house.  Homeowners keep their dog in the yard.  Every now and then I'll see some little yapper that dug his way out, but overall no problems. 

Until yesterday.  I went for a walk around 6 AM.  I had one of my nasty PMS headaches.  I figured a walk was very low impact and safe. 

My back was very cranky last week.  I didn't want to do anything to aggravate it, either. 

I had a good walk for 20 minutes, went all over the subdivision looking for "lost kitten" posters, which of course I didn't find.  I had to look, though.  I walked down to one end of the subdivision, then came back.  I live about halfway. 

I was preparing to keep walking, up to the park, when I heard a very menacing growl.  Pit bulls.  Aggressive ones.  Two. 

Now, I know many pit bulls are wonderful and loving animals.  I don't hate the breed - but when they are in the care and keeping of someone who thinks it is "cool" and "fun" to have an aggressive dog, and makes them that way, they are a thing of horror. 

I did what has worked in my experience: yelled No! in an assertive manner.  I made myself bigger, putting my arms out to the sides and raising my shoulders.  I stood my ground and looked near them, but not at their eyes.  They growled some and came towards me, but I yelled NO again and stomped my foot.  I made myself bigger. 

This may not be "the proper" way to deal, but it has served me well with dozens of loose, aggressive, dogs. 

These stood, watching me for a minute, then left.  I walked home, watching the dogs to make sure they didn't come up behind me.  Happily I was literally 80 feet from home. 

I then had Ron call animal control, who came out immediately.  Lots of small children wait for the schoolbus on corners in the subdivision.  They did not want to end up on the news.


But it got me thinking.

1.  I read a book on improvised weapons.  It strongly suggested carrying a big stick when you walk.
2.  I see tons of people, walking, carrying sticks, around here.
3.  I took it to a message board I respect and they agreed, good idea.

So, I bought a stick.  It's only about $19 with shipping.  I can finish it myself with some of this: Spray finish .  I went through a huge woodstaining phase back in 2006 and feel I know most aspects pretty well.  I'll have fun with it and I can use the leftovers on the gate.

Problem solved.  It should also keep away Bad People.  

Mixed bag

Well, it's been a mixed bag. 

The dog next door (sounds like a bad Hallmark movie) has been barking some, at night.  Not tremendously so, but enough that Mom-of-6-and-a-new-baby is looking VERY exhausted and frazzled.  Worse, actually, than I have ever seen her.  As I see it, she's the weak link.  I doubted she wanted the animal, and if it's keeping her and the baby awake... 

If I felt they would be good owners I'd be rooting for a happy ending.  However, they have, as yet, left a small puppy alone in the yard 24/7, even when it was raining and in the 30's.  The husband played with it 5 minutes when he got home from work (I counted) then went in the house and ignored it.  I never even heard the kids playing with it today, but when they do they spend more time on the trampoline than interacting with the dog. 

I don't see that treatment resulting in a mannerly, quiet, dog.  It's also a small, cat-sized, "cute" animal.  I don't think it's going to be as much "fun" when it hits 30-40 pounds (it's a lab so it will get big!), jumping on the kids and knocking them down.  A lot of adolescent dogs get surrendered to the shelter for just that reason - it isn't cute anymore, and they can't manage it. 

I seriously considered a dog when we bought the house.  I did a lot of research and read several books, finally concluding I wasn't able to give a dog what it would need: consistency, training, discipline, exercise, etc.  

Speaking of shelters, one of the rescues got back and said sorry, can't help.  They did like my rescue story, though.  The kittens have been doing very well, I think. One is having some kind of maniacal fit by my feet right now, but the girls have been more accepting. 

Torbie just, and I mean, just, spent about an hour with me doing God Time, lap time, petting, good cuddles.  She's "fine". 

Ron's cat is having more issues, but is greeting the kittens and smelling them, with good posture and body language.  I think she just doesn't know what to do with them. 

Her behavior has changed some as a result, which has Ron in hysterics.  He doesn't do well with change, I'm realizing.  I think he'll come around.  If not I will have to rehome them. 

At worst, whatever I find will be better than them starving in the woods, getting run over (they had no street smarts), or getting kicked to death by Mean People. 

Thump.  Thump. Crash!  God help the gnat that gets on our property.  That's the nice thing about "good hunter" cats.  You will never have to worry about pest control - they'll get everything from gnats to squirrels.  Bubba even brought me a wild rabbit one time. 

As far as I see it, my only problem is Biscuit's terrible gas.  Oh, those farts will kill you, and he's such a little guy.  They smell like a septic tank mated a garbage truck.  WHEW. 

I don't mind them running around while I sleep, and if you've been reading a while I'm sure that's surprising.  But that's happy background noise, and I'm used to sleeping through kittens.  Just in Houston, I had Shadow (breast cancer), Midi (became a vicious biter so I had to surrender him), Baby Girl the first (poisoned by "a neighbor" - whatever I have now, it's a lot better than my former neighbors), my current Baby Girl (still kicking), and the kittens. 

Ron asked me to lock up the kittens so Baby Girl "feels safe".  I think, unfortunately the "cat doesn't love me" problem is my fault.  I put some cat food in a small bowl in the living room.  I saw BG come in tonight and eat the food, then leave. 

Our old setup had the foodbowls on Ron's dresser, so they had to walk past him to get the food.  Ron could greet them, get some affection, etc. 

I put the living room (really just the front room) food in the bedroom. 

Regarding my house layout, I have, essentially, a "shotgun house" - basically one room wide, with a hallway, deep but not wide.  On the front of the house, I have a 10 foot wide garage, then inside a kitchen/foyer about 15 feet wide.  As you walk in the house you enter the front room - the main room, about 15 feet square.  I have a dining alcove in this room, then a hallway that runs along the left wall to the back of the house.  The computer room runs in the middle, then, across the back, from left to right, my room, bathroom, Ron's room.  I like it. 

I don't have living/dining all that.  I'm fine with that. 

So, I had to redirect the kittens a few times while typing.  They have a lot of energy.  Ron wants them locked up in my room tonight which I find rather alarming. 

The frantic play wouldn't be such an issue if they had outside access, but, pardon me, they are dumb as rocks.  They play in the street.  They walk right up to abusive strangers.  I don't want them outside. 

I have a pit bull behind me.  I could just see one of the kittens squirming through the fence, walking up to the dog, and saying "Hi!  Will you be my friend?"  [facepalm]  We are not close to busy traffic but we are near a T intersection. 

Baby Girl was a lot smarter.  She figured out the cat door on her own, in a day or two (these guys are oblivious).  She's clever. 

These guys are not - although they may just need a little time to recuperate.  If/when the figure out the cat door, they figure it out.  I assume God will only allow that to happen when they're ready. 

Speaking of ready, this morning we went to work very early - 4 AM pickup.  The driver pulled up, backed up, making loud beeping noises, and had the dispatch radio pretty loud.  Normally I would run out, having hysterics, and beg her to be quiet, neighbors, etc. 

Not so much lately.  I don't want the drivers to disturb them, but if they do I don't yell at the driver, either. 

The driver loudly greeted Ron as I rounded up the kittens.  I didn't run out, either. 

I do my best to be quiet.  If someone else wants to be rude, that's on them.  One time I asked the driver to turn the radio down, and she yelled "Why?  It's not that loud!" 

Surprisingly, the dog is fine with the paratransit vehicles.  I guess, for the dog, it's just daily scenery. 

We got to work and paid a refund.  I found it telling.  We paid our refund within a day of the phone call.  I was accosted by an employee while working at the fridge, out on the work floor.  She was very upset at the other vendor, who she feels is ducking her refund.  I had to explain, I'm sorry, that's not me.  She is the skinny white lady with short hair.  I didn't state the obvious, I'm the fat white lady with long hair. 

All my people look alike.  :p 

It took a while for her to understand: two vendors.  "Mine" is the "wheelchair" in the cafeteria.  The other guy has 30-some machines everywhere else. 

I stocked and all the machines looked really great. 

But.  I had a problem. 

Ron and I forgot to empty the change bucket on the bottled vendor.  It backed up all the way along the path, causing a massive coin jam.  I thought I got it, but I didn't.  I think I just need to remount it. 

Worst case, the repairman is coming out anyway for the other vendor, so he can run by and "get" us.  Either way: fixed tomorrow. 

But it was embarrassing. 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Spread it

This morning, I looked at our paratransit driver, and the folded wheelchair.  "Uh, I don't know how to say this" I told her "But you need to spread it."  She began laughing hysterically.

I didn't sleep well but I was OK with it (a recent development).  The neighbor's dog was barking and yelping right outside my bedroom, but, as I reminded myself, right outside their bedroom.  They have a 1-story.  The husband works 12 hour days.   They have a newborn!  That's got to be awful. 

It's small and cute right now - I doubt they will find it as interesting when it starts tearing up the yard, especially if it keeps barking all night, too.

I also thought it was really sad, as I laid my hand on my two little rescue kittens.  They were warm and cozy on a soft wool blanket.  One kept nursing on a stuffed animal.  They had an abundance of food, treats, toys, and petting.  They even have other cats to keep them company.  These are throwaway "alley" cats.

Contrast the other side of the wall; a lonely purebed puppy left alone in the cold, neglected (they feed him but that's about it, no "social" except a little playtime with the kids now and then - and they seem a lot more into their trampoline), and sad.  While my guys couldn't be happier.

It just goes to show, it isn't always the animal, but the human tending it.  

I woke up with a headache, but was quite pleased with my remedy.  I had a 17 ounce Diet Mountain Dew and two aspirin tablets.  It works very effectively and I didn't need to take anything else.

My pharmacist told me aspirin is the best choice for me, taking my cocktail.  I may take some tonight as a prophylactic (wow spelled right on the first shot!), so I don't wake up with one tomorrow.

We went to work.  It was pretty slow, of course, being a holiday, but we had a delivery. We got that all done, came home. 

I went to do my God Time, then remembered I had, already.  The kittens had a can of cat food (I plan to free feed dry grain free kitten food and supplement with canned).  I hung out for a little bit and we went to the pet store. 

[sigh]  Well, that wasn't cheap.  The kitten food was on sale, $17 for 5 pounds, but it's grain free, very nourishing, and very filling.  I got some toys, canned food, and an incline scratcher. 

I came home, fed the dry food, and opened the scratcher.  The kittens demolished the toy inside while I napped.  When I got up, I made it better. 

I had a good nap. 

Ahhh... you shouldn't have asked for photos. 

 Two brothers. 

About an hour after I brought them home. 

Biscuit likes Ron, and his treats. 

Biscuit is mostly white with maybe 20% gray, shorthair, with changing eyes.  They'll either be brown or green.  He has cute little pink paws, pink nose, white whiskers. 

Gravy seems to like me a little better.  He is a tad food aggressive but easy to put a few bowls down and keep everyone happy.  If I had been starving out in the woods I'd be food aggressive too.  He gets a little growly if another cat approaches while he's eating. 

Gravy has a gray and white tail, same eyes, nose, and whiskers.  He has a little more white on him, too. 

Torbie, my older cat, is pretty used to them.  I thought she'd have the most trouble.  Baby Girl "Ron's Cat" has been more petulant and timid, but is also coming around. 

Treats all around - a great equalizer.  We all like treats, lets build on that. 

The kittens make great sleep partners, "letting" me sleep.  They do walk around some, and I hear them eating, but I don't mind.  They're good boys. 

They are also *completely awesome* as regards the litter box.  Good boys!