Dear Dear Diary
My knitta crew.
In no particular order, but most left to right- Daisysmom, Twiggi, Nuffles, Jodi, me, Bug, Kathi, and Yarngasm. I'd say more about these ladies and our Tuesday night knitting meetings, but my mom reads this now, and I somehow feel obliged to watch my language.
Does this mean I'm famous?
I'm really flattered to have a yarn named after me. Here's what they look like all knit up on my feet.
In other news, Max (formerly known as Mr. Salty Whiskers) is off to the vet to have his nuts chopped off.
He is bonding well with Rascal. Neither dog wants to belt behind when one goes for a walk. However, they really aren't cuddling or playing, but that may also be because they are both older gentleman and above such things. Except today we gave the schnauzer a squeaky toy, and well... He likes a Squeak.
He has a name. We thought about Clyde, Hamish, Admiral Barky, Mr. Whiskers, Scruffy, Poo-O-Matic, Little Dog, and several other things, but we thought about who he reminded us of... I thought of Ginny, The Dog Who Rescued Cats
(and don't click on that link unless you like Cat Rescue, a good cry, or both- you have been warned), but that's a Girl and my mother-in-law's name (Nor do I want to be the one to explain to the mother-in-law why we didn't name a dog after her). Jazz thought of the Grinch's little dog and the sad eyed hopeful way he looked all the time. His name is Max. I liked it too.
So his name is Max.
In other news, I've started knitting the Scarf of One Thousand Leaves... or what I would properly like to call it- The Topiary Scarf.
Salty Whiskers, our new dog.
This picture was taken on the bank of the river after I finally finished all of the paperwork that let me take him home. I spent a good hour just sitting with him and walking him, and letting him get used to me before I stuffed him in the car to take him to the vet's office. He had spent so little time out of doors that it was a remarkable time for him. And it helped him develop a little trust with me. He did not want to go in or out of the truck, and let me pick him up just for those. But once he was in the truck, he was fine- running all over the back seat to pick the Best View, and then settling where he could just sit and watch me.
I sat on the burm for a little while, just singing and talking to him, and then I remembered the last time I spent near a shelter just sitting and talking and singing to a dog, and I burst into tears thinking about Kenya. No, Salty isn't going to replace her in any way shape or form, but she'll scoot over and make room at the food bowl. He came closer when I cried, wanting to comfort me, and yet still scared. The poor dear.
Apparently, he had his vaccinations at the shelter including his rabies, and he allegedly had been Frontlined there. Their vet said he would need his teeth seen to soon, so we knew that going in. Our vet agreed that his mouth was in terrible shape. She said his coat looked good though and his heart sounded well. There was minor concern over runny poo and a mild fever- but these could be stress from the change of being in the shelter, the constant change in his diet, and the possible mild infection of his teeth. Also, one of his testicles was not descended, so getting him neutered would not be a quick and easy matter- he would need one ball searched for. In the interest of making him more comfortable, we decided to get the teeth cleaned tomorrow, especially if he still had the fever in the morning, because the teeth were the most likely cause if there was any infection. And while they had him, they would do a fecal examination on anything he produced overnight to check for parasites. He will come home tomorrow evening with a course of antibiotics. So we're doing some scurrying to prepare. In two weeks or so, he'll go back to the vet's and they'll hunt for his balls. The problem with a testicle non-descended is that it is much more likely to turn cancerous, and if it's not the lump the vet thinks it is, that lump had better get checked out- although it's probably just a fat lump.
And the housebreaking begins tomorrow. Wish us luck! We'll need it.
What am I doing instead of the fantasy I tossed? Here, have an excerpt.
In 1994, I was working for a newspaper, which I don't want to name in the interest of self-preservation, as a copy editor/page designer of the Living Section. It was my favoritest job ever and I still miss it. When the management decided to have a booth at a Volunteer Day, I agreed to help man the booth. I used to be a Girl Scout. I used to be a Boy Scout too, but that's a different story. I liked volunteering. The whole day was spent urging people to volunteer for whatever causes spoke to them. There were tables also for the Jaycees, United Way, and of course Scouting. I had several folks try to recruit me to their causes, but I liked one of the causes we had on our table- the Humane Society.
The next day I called Herkimer County Humane Society, and I asked what I could do. They told me their hours for dog walking- in the afternoon while I was at work. I said I was available only in the mornings and on weekends- was there something I could do then? I could almost hear his shrug. You could come and clean cages, I was told. That would be fine, I thought, and I scheduled a start date.
How bad could cleaning cages be? Everybody poops. There would be a lot of that. Spilled dog food. A heavy ammonia smell from the urine and cleaners. And of course a heavy dose of animal fear and hope. It's how most animal shelters smell to me.
My first day at the shelter was early December. It took longer than I thought it would to get from my apartment in Poland to the far side of Herkimer, technically in Mohawk. It was dark at 8 something in the morning, and there were a lot of cars on the icy driveway. I approached the logical entrance and heard an argument going on inside. The door was locked. When I went to knock, the door was opened roughly and a man ran outside. I didn't look at him. I seized the opportunity to get inside. I was stared at by angry, shocked faces.
"Um," I managed, 'My name is Georg, and I'm here to volunteer. I called a while ago?"
A frail older lady recovered first and took charge. "Good. We're glad you're here," she snapped. "You can help Pat with the cats."
I looked at the two men in the room. The tall grey-blond man nodded. The shorter darker man looked poleaxed. "She can help me with the dogs," he blurted.
The frog-like woman croaked, "That's fine. Dusty will help me with the cats then." Apparently, she was Pat. You would think with a name like Georg I would know better than to fall for such assumptions, but no, I have my stereotypes too.
The seated man stood and introduced himself as Jazz. I liked his mustache and his long hair, and his thin wiry build. He looked like he had a sense of humor in his dark eyes, but he seemed off balance. The whole vibe of the room was strange, but I wrote that off to the argument I walked in on.
"Let's get to work," Alma said. Of course, I didn't find out her name for months. I didn't see her again for a while. She came regularly and took all of the dog blankets and cat blankets that had not been coated in sickness or poo, washed them, and brought them back, every week. She was more than 70 years old and had dedicated her life to this shelter. She had a will of iron. The argument had been mainly between herself and the caretaker of the shelter, causing him to leave in a huff, and he never came back. Jazz ended up assuming the caretaker role, except he never did get the title nor an increase in pay. And he really didn't want these things either very much. But I didn't know this – I just followed those brown eyes into the Dog Room, and listened as he told me what he wanted me to do to help.
Did you Vote?
Because I did.
The line was still pretty short. I went before coffee which is why I almost forgot the propositions. Again.
I wrote this initially on November 1. But I've tossed it in favor of something else.
No one really saw the wave as it coruscated through the earth. No one could say later exactly what it was, where it had gone, or from where indeed it came. It was only careful mapping later that plotted its features as a wave, but that did not explain what had changed, who had changed, or how.
She had been spinning when the wave hit - hand-dyed silk on a Bosworth featherweight spindle. She had described the combination in the past as nearly effortless. The spindle was so light and the silk wanted to be spun fine, remembering the single small filaments from the worm as they were originally made. She wasn't sure what to do with the finished yarn, but it would tell her given time, as most of the yarn in her stash was wont to do.
Then the wave hit.
For a moment the spindle glowed. The small pinch of silk held in her hand ready to use grew in quantity and yet seemed insubstantial. The thread itself felt even thinner and stronger and glowed full of possibilities. The spindle had been about to slow, but now picked up speed without the need to actually spin it. The thread grew longer without drafting even being necessary. Then the glow faded, and it was time to wind more on the cop.
Her husband had been sleeping- a needed nap. He did not notice anything at that time.
Many people did not notice anything at all- in relation to themselves anyway. The electronics in everything seemed to go haywire. Some of it stayed functional, but most of it did not- and it seemed to be connected as to whether the user of the electronic device liked it or not. One philosopher later theorized that what the wave did was promote happiness- if you were happy about what you were doing when the wave hit, the electronics resonated your happiness, overflowing the circuits who strained to help you. If you weren't happy, the electronics simply quit. Every red light that was glared at stopped working. Cars used for functionality stopped and refused to move, unless they were old enough not to have a computerized system. If you were playing a game you enjoyed, it kept working. If you were working at your job and you didn't like the job, the lights went out, the computer went blank, and electricity simply refused to flow around you. If you were goofing off at your job that you didn't like, nothing changed for you- but if the majority of the people working at the business didn't enjoy it- that business could no longer function. Society had to change, and the adaptation was very difficult.
The news had been on in the background for her spinning, so that was all the TV would show her.