Thursday, July 31, 2008

Why is being nice so damn hard?

OK-I sent the offer into the Universe via e-mail-I'd be willing to trade the bike for a Jeep in exchange for utter silence on the matter for now and forever more, amen.

There comes a time when you have to put what you want (a little fun) up against how much worry it will cause. I'm learning that fun needs to be found in activities away from 49th street if I don't want anyone to worry. It's kind of like being gay, only without the sex. Maybe they will have a Deb Pride week or a parade in my honor.

In the movies, if someone gives in, sometimes the other parties say "oh, we were wrong, you should go do what you want to do....." but I'm not holding my breath-yet I will uphold my offer if it is accepted.

My folks are just too old to expect sweeping change-and they are making little changes so now I have to be fucking big and put my own ego on the chopping block too. That probably comes with living in close proximity to one's family, which I haven't done in 20 something years-so forgive me if I have trouble figuring it all out.

In Corporate America we called it picking your battles, and I was a master at it for the most part. We'll see how it works on 49th street.

Stuff and stuff

The Fabulous Jack has unveiled all the creations his adoring fans have designed for him. If you ever need a lift, bookmark this's truly, truly inspiring.

Frieda and Diego have arrived....still no pictures as they are settling in. They are 1/2 Dwarf Burmese pythons-second generation from the jungle. In addition to the Dwarf, Diego is a beautful, almost patternless green, and Frieda is a het Granite. She is as patterned as Diego is patternless.

Bebo is the breeder for these two beauties. They are destined to be two of the most photographed snakes on the planet, but first things first, they must settle in to their new digs.

I'm giving in-I'm going to say it...I'm Depressed....errr, I am having a depressive episode I should say. Somewhere I crossed the line between legitimate responses to to stressful and sad situations and mega changes over the past year, to honest to goodness depression. Unless of course, depression IS a legitimate response....aaaahhhhh-therein lies madness.

Contrary to popular antidepressant ads, I don't sit around all day in an unrecongizeable state. When the parrot makes a farting noise, I do laugh, and it's an honest laugh. But my lack of energy is getting in the way of things I want to do, important things, things of GREAT IMPORT. Ok, that's as far as I'm going with that one-I'm depressed, I'll figure out how to feel better, and when I do, I'll let you know.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Animal Wednesday-Shark Week!

In honor of Shark Week (21 year) are my personal best shark photos.

This is unedited-just a pleasant accident. Blacktip.

Another blacktip shot.

Egg case of a horned shark.

Leopard Shark-pretty pretty!

Sand tiger-oooooooooh!

Ok, these were all taken at the Longbeach Aquarium. My batteries were dead the day I went to the Monteray Bay Aquarium and saw the GREAT WHITE SHARK!!!!!!

In honor of shark week, and in preparation for more pictures and other fun adventures, I am enrolled in a scuba certification class this weekend. HAW

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

King Jack's New Do

Tail of the Pouting Parrot

Even though I was only gone for one full day, Oliver went into full blown Parrot Pout. He was icy in his demeanor with bouts of rage. He was clearly very angry that I left.

So I did what I do when anyone else throws a fit-I ignored him. I let him know that I was glad he was here, I missed him, but I didn't stand by his cage and plead for his forgiveness. And, pretty much like everyone else, when he got it out of his system he returned to his silly self.

I wanted to be very careful not to reward his anger-he learns so quickly that when anything new comes up I really have to sit back and consider what the best action is. He keeps me on my toes.

Poor guy was so distraught he wouldn't even dial his telephone. He just looked at me like "you do it, please, I cannot" made me giggle.

This morning all seems to be forgiven.

Sunday, July 27, 2008


Sometimes it really does help just to do things differently. I drove a different way to Dallas, I left the TV off except for Meerkat Manor....(got to check in on the whiskers). I've eaten food I normally don't eat-not food I don't like, just not my first choice from a menu.

I'm dealing with the ever approaching demise of my laptop and the realization that I don't really care much for the desktop. I bought a Mac....something I've wanted forever. I need to keep a windows machine because a great deal of my marketable skills revolve around being current on office programs, but it doesn't have to be either or.

Sadly, I will have to hide the Mac. My brother KNOWS EVERYTHING about computers, even things that probably haven't been thought of yet. Ok, I am exaggerating-he is very knowledgeable, makes his living with them, and is a pretty nice guy. But if Bill says Mac is whack-then Daddy does too, and Mom ......yadda yadda.

So now comes the adult emotional intelligence-I know that I have every right to have a Mac....Bill is entitled to say "I wouldn't have one" and he will....but my elders will not be able to leave it alone, and from henceforth every computer related discussion will come around to "why did you......"

Now the sad part is not that I will hide my little Macbook. The sad part is realizing my parents have progressed to the point where it would truly upset them if they knew I had one. And even sadder that they truly are at a point where they need to be coddled.

But, the good news is I've realized coddling them doesn't have to mean not doing what I want to do-tried that-doesn't work for me.

What an awful thing it must have been raising me. I never do anything in the shadows, and they are the kind of people who really don't want to know.....I think we must have been meant to be together as sort of a yin/yang thing. Essentially, we are everything that annoys us in another human being-only we love each other and not just out of duty. Duty ended eons ago-now our interactions are voluntary and we all know it.

I kicked my own daughter to the curb for drug addiction-if I didn't want to take care of my parents, I wouldn't. Really, the only "have to " is the one that lives inside of me, and that have to is a want to. And they know all too well I don't follow rules and I don't do things I really don't want to do....I'm speaking of overall undertakings. In any undertaking is a series of unpleasant to downright repulsive tasks-but the overall outcome is what I base my decisions on.

I'm getting ready to pack up for the trip out to the snakes and then home-and I'm not a bit sad....Oh, I'd like to stay longer, but I know I can come back, and more importantly, I can pack up some things I've figured out and take with me.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Get Thee to a Spa

I've been practicing the what can I do right NOW idea this week. One of the things I really need right now is a vacation, but I can't get away for any length of time. So, I approached it with what CAN I do?

It was weird, because many of the things I came up with I felt were shorter versions of what I really wanted to do-then it hit me-if I do something for two days now it doesn't mean I can't do it for 2 weeks later if i want to and if I have time.

So, I present to you, Deb's Big Get Away Weekend.

Friday-head for Dallas-stopping at GW Animal Park for a long long visit with the tigers and lions and big snakes......stop at Outlet Mall for a little retail therapy. Friday afternoon-Check in Cooper Aerobic Center Lodge.....Naptime, then pool time.

Saturday morning 8 am (ok booking last minute you don't get the best times) Facial
9 am Hot Stone Massage

10 am-most likely a nap, maybe the pool. The rest of the day is napping, pool, walking, workout, napping, pool, reading. get the idea? 24 hours of nothing but reading, writing and working out.

Sunday morning-leisurely breakfast, check out, head to Kaufman to pick up a python. Spend Sunday afternoon visiting with snake friend and looking and photographing a marvelous collection of burmese pythons, help clean cages, etc. Hell on earth for some of you, heaven for me.

Sunday evening-head for home.

Now, I drive between OKC and Dallas like most people drive to Walmart-but my point is, I haven't done it in awhile. I always balance the cost of any weekend vs. 4 days in Cancun and maybe that has been a mistake. Cancun is cheap and I love it, but I can't be out of pocket for that long right now....and going to Dallas won't mean Cancun won't still be there later.

The fact that I even have to think that lets me know it's past time to get away.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Animal Wednesday

Most of this blog has been written by me while my cat dozed on my shoulders. She drapes herself across the back of my neck, head always on the right side and buries her nose in the crook of my elbow. Since we've both gotten older, she enjoys putting her hip right at the base of my neck and I lean back into the warmth-feels good on her hips, feels great on my neck.

Pasht is an alternate name for the Goddess Bastet; I didn't want people to call her Bastard. She's one of those animals I plucked from a bad situation, not intending to keep. I sometimes forget how beautiful she is because I'm so taken by how much I love her.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


The cosmos provides
Today it was iced coffee
And tangy swiss cheese

Monday, July 21, 2008

Cactus Monday (haiku)

Green against brown earth

Thriving where no other can

Tenacious Cactus!

Saturday, July 19, 2008


Yesterday I went knitting with a friend. One of their knitting circle had passed away-a 30 something year old man (hetro, his wife was a member of the group as well). He had been sick, went to bed, never woke up.

I'm watching a big orange moon rise outside my window-a moonrise this guy didn't get to see. He won't ever see THIS one, maybe he saw one like it, maybe he'll see another, but where ever he is, I doubt he's worried about this particular moon.

Where ARE you? I always ask that when anyone dies, and so far no one has answered. Is there some intake place you go to? For that matter, does everyone go to the same place? I mean, why would they-we've all gone different directions all of our lives, why would go to the exit door to leave?

Yesterday my eyes misted over a few times, once for this man, once for his wife, once for a friend of his and mine who was moved to tears. Amazing creatures we humans, the mere news of something that we can relate to can generate powerful emotions. When Bitty died last week, my dogs looked for her, relating to her absence. Had they come across her dead body, they probably would have chewed on it and would not have pondered how Bitty had become a chew toy, only felt delight in finding a chew toy.

I can't decide which attitude is better-and the truth is probably that neither is. I cannot react like a dog any more than a dog can react like me-we're just different.

I wish I could cherish all moonrises the way I cherish the one tonight-simply because I'm here to see it. Really, just being here is a gift we often overlook. If you are here, reading this, I wish for you the same sense of joy I have at this moment, watching the moon. Glad to be here.

What's so wrong with mud?

Stuck in the mud.....
More accurately, at the moment I am smeared with mud (thanks Ollie)
What is the difference between apathy and indifference?
Apathy means I care, but I don't do anything.
Indifference means, no, I really don't care.
In about 20 minutes I will begin to care
I'm leaving the house and don't want to go out with muddy clothes and arms
I will bathe and change clothes.
Life is like that too-20 minutes can mean the difference between caring and not caring.
Same mud, different context.
No wonder life is soooooo damn complicated.
And this-not a poem, not a paragraph, just a random thought fart
About muddy paws and life.
Brilliant? Give it 20 minutes and maybe it will be.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Which Way Do I Go, Which Way Do I Go?

There was an old looney tunes cartoon that had a slow witted hound dog as a character. He was always saying "duh, which way did he go, which way did he go..." and honestly, I can't remember who he was looking for.

Well, honestly, I can't remember what I'm looking for either. Is this the big cosmic joke-we run around like wild things trying to get to something, till suddenly we realize that we have no idea what it is we are trying to get?

I've always been a closet planner-I have a goal in mind, I go get it. I stay nonchalant on the surface, but underneath, a lot of thought goes in to what I do. Then I discount what I did by saying "oh, it was a spur of the moment thing..."

So, here I sit, sipping my Mexican coffee and goat milk latte-and yes, it tastes pretty good. I am completely at peace and aware that none of us knows the future, the final outcome or just what is going to happen in the next hour.

So, now what?

Thursday, July 17, 2008


I visit alot with the grim reaper these days. Yesterday Blaze, the baby Fire Ball Python, drowned in his water bowl. He was doing well, and his organs were all in perfect shape, other than the fact that he was dead and rigor mortis was starting.

Of all the things I've worried about lately, a healthy snake drownng in a water bowl was not up on the list. Is this the cosmic slap upside the head that says "quit worrying-you'll never worry about it all no matter how hard you try?"

Ok, I don't honestly think that the cosmos takes the time to align to show me what I need to know. I do think that I should reflect on things that DO happen to learn from them. The cosmos provides the fertile proving ground for our experiments in life, but it's up to us to provide the intent.

I've never liked the notion that "God has a plan for you"...even as a child I raised the question "what if I don't like the plan?" Lately I've remembered some of my childhood questions, and you know what, they were pretty good questions after all.

I revisited my intent to come back here-and dang it, I still think it's a good idea. Back to my birthplace-if I can be ME on 49th street, I can probably be me anywhere in the world. And that seems like a valuable skill to work on, even if it is somewhat self centered. (just a little).

Like a zillion other people, I love the Metallica tune "Unforgiven". Google it, it's worth a listen and franky, I don't want to lose my thought long enough to link to it. Nothing like Heavy Metal to lay on a big dose of guilt because someone didn't let you live your life the way you wanted to. Waaah waaah waaaah. Now that the boys have all had counseling and rehab, they just aren't as angry as they used to be.....better for them, but a loss for angst ridden, angry art forms.

So, what have I learned? It's definitely easier to face one unexpected death than mutiple slow deaths (speaking strictly of snakes here). I've reaffirmed my beliefs that we are each captains of our own vessels and that we cannot possible conceive of everything that might happen.

I did my first snake necropsy. $$$ Hundreds of dollars worth of dead snake-and yes, it looked just like chicken. Now you know.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

HAW-Rampant Cuteness

No snakies today-first up, some chimpanzees who seem to be buddies.

Part of a line drawing I was fiddling with for a tatoo of a chihuahua howling at the moon.

Priss taking a big bite out of a rubber chicken.

A parting shot-Prissy and Dottie.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Out of Line

Too tired to sleep
No dreams
No waking
Enough enough.

I fought to be what I am
And you would chastise me
You who did nothing
Want me
To be like you.

Does my daring frighten you
Does it threaten your safety
Or only your vision of yourself
Is it my flesh you fear for
Or your own ego?

Speak of it no more
And we will sink beneath the banal
Where all is as it should be
According to some misguided rulebook
I threw out long ago.

We both saw the prison
Safety brings
You say I am careless with life
I say I will not live imprisoned
Safe from harm
But not from regret
Till death is the only escape from remorse.

I choose because I can
You can too
But you won't
And I can't tell you how
I can only show you
Because I threw out your rulebook
And you always follow the rules.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Cactus Monday

Random stuff from last week, a cartoon attempt, attempt at dashes and an attempt at dots.

I'm off today to sit with my Mom while my father undergoes some testing.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


I am very impatient today. Very. Went to pick Mom up to take her to see Uncle John-20 minutes to get to the car. 3 minutes to get to nursing home. 10 or so minutes to visit with the lady out front-finally I broke in and said "we need to go see John". John was asleep, so I sat with him and Mom wandered out to talk to the nursing home staff. Finally collected her and we left.

In reality this took exactly 45 minutes.

No, I don't have anything in particular that needs to get done today-but I'm going to take Mom and Dad for Daddy's test tomorrow which means sitting in a waiting room with one or both of the most impatient people of all time for several hours tomorrow. I only HAVE so much patience, and I'm trying to save it LOL.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Possession of the Body

Sometimes my interactions with mom and dad feel almost as if we are arguing about what should be done with the most viable body left (mine). I think that's where a lot of what I term bossiness comes from. Todays sour look was brought to you by my saying I was going to pull Prissy (mom's ex dog that came to live with me) from obedience class and take Oliver because he's better suited and more likely to progress on to something else.

For me, it's just a matter of spending my time where it can do the most good. I would never run Priss in agility, she's too small and likely to be injured. She is already well mannered on a leash-so far what her life is and will be, she's done with her education (except for refresher drills, etc.).

Where I sometimes lose patience (I didn't today) is why does it even matter? I doubt Mom would go to the grand nationals if Prissy herself was competing for the high point dog of all time. For her, it's just a story I'd tell when I got home and then she would tell her cronies. I guess if the dog were Prissy, it would make her more a part of it.

Now, the stress of Daddy's upcoming tests and John's continued decline is ramping up Mom's need to control things and I will work on being more patient or at least not taking things so personally.

But possession of the body IS kind of personal, don't you think? I am such a pleaser I don't want anyone to be unhappy or worried about anything I do. I'm just not such a pleaser that I'll live my life within a 74 year old's comfort level.

I was a bit of a wild child, but I can't spend the rest of my life making up for some sleepless nights when I was a teenager. HELL, I didn't ASK to be BORN....giggle giggle. I guess the possession of the body thing is really nothing new.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Still taking a break

I'm taking a bit of a break-still drawing, still taking pictures, but working more this week on doing things than talking about doing them if that makes sense.

1. Motorcycle is safely in the garage (Honda Shadow 750CC)
2. The hole in my trailer is being fixed by the storage place (haven't even taken a trip yet....ggrrrrr).
3. Prissy has a class tonight
4. Bitty is being put down tomorrow and I am surprisingly emotional about that.

Ok, maybe we'll talk about number 4 a bit. Bitty is a dog I basically brought here to die, to live out her days. She's had a nice few months but is failing to the point it's cruel to keep her around. I knew what I was getting in to when I brought her home, but I am surprised at how bad losing her makes me feel. She really is a dear old soul.

I have no regrets about the time or money I've spent with and on her. I usually keep the dogs on the other blog, but I would urge anyone who can to consider opening their home up to an older dog.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

I feel awful

I'm taking Mom to see her sister today. We are going to drive out the country, swim in the pool and I have no idea why I'm dreading it so. Probably because they will ask me what I've been up to, and if I were honest I'd say "sitting on my ass feeling bad for the most part", but then they'd want to fix it.

I have a new snake coming....can't really talk about that. Momma Gerbil died-but the gerbils are snake food. I get my new motorcycle tomorrow-bad topic. I've been writing, but I don't like to talk about what I'm writing at the moment, so I don't bring it up. Ahhh hah! I went to see Get Smart the other day with friends. I liked it.

And Prissy had a melt down in dog class-another funny story to tell. Let's see, I'm taking Greta and Oliver to a doggy playgroup next week. Now I'm on a roll!

I really do need to get out more, and I'm making myself go today because Mom is looking forward to it. Note to the world: When someone has been reclusive, do NOT lecture them on it the first time they stick their head out the door. It's counterproductive.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad-both married one time, only to each other. I'm not going to debate the pluses and minuses of that-just celebrate the fact that it is. This was last year right before Mom's first ever train ride.

I will ponder for a moment how the world has changed. By the time their parent's died they (their parents) had trouble recognizing what the world had become, and now the same is becoming true for them, as it will be for me I'm sure. In times past, change was slower, and a person could live a lifetime learning about the world around them with the certainty that it wouldn't suddenly be completely different.

At 47, my mind still boggles at two people who came together as adults and who have been a couple since before I was born. Because it is not something I will experience in this lifetime, it is very hard for me to wrap my head around. I usually run out of something to say around Sunday morning of a long weekend. 56 years-I can't imagine it-it's more than I have experienced-it's beyond me.

Like it or not, our parent's shape us throughout our lives, either with what they did or they didn't do, whether we emulate them or rebel against them. What a powerful force that is on someone's life, yet I bet they had no idea when they were busy creating my brother and I.

Not that anyone does.

Thursday, July 3, 2008


Surrender does not mean giving up or giving in, selling out or running off. It just means seeing what is, and understanding that naming what is now does not mean you can also name what will be. Now is, future may be. I am, but only as I am now, not as I was, and not yet what I will be. You?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Animal Wednesday

This is a duck that Dottie and I saw when we went camping a few years ago. The duck actually waddled up on land and Dottie chased him back into the water, to her great delight.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Focusing on the Wrong Thing?

Sometimes we are so busy looking at the grass we miss the cute dog scratching himself.