Thursday, March 30, 2017

collards and berries and lamb, oh my

I went to the farmer's market with a bundle of cash and a burning passion to eat local.  And away I came with local strawberries, eggs, ground lamb, drum (fish), yogurt, collards, sweet potatoes, calendula plant, tomatoes, and I forget what else.

IT IS A BOUNTY.

IT's a tiny little thing in a parking lot once a week and today was a doozy of a thunderstorm, but most of them were still there.  Unfortunately not my carrot woman, and I really wanted to make a carrot salad so I guess I'll use regular carrots to go with the fabulous ones I got a couple weeks ago.  When I stayed a few months in France I got addicted to these supermarket carrot salads and for some reason the thought of making them myself had never occurred to me.  But now that I have a food processor: easy peasy. 

Obviously first I need to eat the drum.  Maybe with that carrot salad for dinner tonight.  And then I'll make a dish with meatballs from the lamb cooked with collards and apricots.  Strawberries in the yogurt.  Sweet potatoes and eggs for breakfast.  Calendula in the herb garden.  Tomatoes with the rest of the feta that I love so much.

And that's it I think.

The lamb and egg people were super helpful and nice and I wonder if they would collect lamb bones for my Catahooligan.  Soon I'll have my own eggs but I'll buy other things from them.   OH, I should have gotten some lettuce for the tomatoes and feta.  Oh well.  I have a little bit in my front yard. 

A cooperative of African-American farmers was back this week so I made sure to hit them up and ask what is coming up next with them.  The guy there today was very helpful - sometimes a guy there has no idea what he's selling or how people eat it.




Tuesday, March 28, 2017

love and loss

I realized yesterday that I don't actually hate my job right now.  I'm just so depressed that I'm having a hard time with everything. 

I keep cycling through the grief stages with HNIC which is silly but I get angry at him and then in denial, and then I get wracked with sadness and loss.  And i know that I just have to ride it out and let it go on its own - there's absolutely nothing I can do.  Talking or medicating won't help - I'm just really sad about losing my friend.  It's also amplified because of getting to know his son on Facebook - I see pieces of the worldview, the smile, the humor.

I just really fucking miss my friend - or the expectation of him. I didn't have to see him that often to know he was always there.  I think of things and think of texting or emailing him and then I remember.  I have conversations with him in my mind.  I just really sad. 

And now that Ziggy is cycling off hte Prozac, her EI is back and she's all over this.  She's my ballast.  Literally, because she's lying on my feet right now.  The way she tucks me into bed is just about the cutest thing ever - how she feels duty-bound to lay with me until I fall asleep, or close enough.

My friend's dog died of cancer two days ago.  Only seven years old.  It happens, a lot recently it seems.  And he loved his dog as I love Ziggy, and the devastation is so deep.  A special dog is sewn to your soul, and that being ripped away causes such pain.

Yesterday Ziggy got loose and ran the streets.  IT was entirely my fault - I left the garage door open, absent-mindedly.  She'd been outside 10-15 minutes and I thought she was chewing on a bone.  Then the doorbell rang and my tenant was holding her - as soon as Ziggy had seen her car pull up, she ran over cheerfully and it was a quick catch.  Oh my goodness how proud of herself my dog was, beaming with self-satisfaction at having just run the streets.  But also proud of being caught and of being brought home.  She was happy to see me.  I would like to think that she would have eventually run right back into the house.  She doesn't want to leave me, she just wants to make her own adventure. 

And what I don't think about is how differently that could have ended.  What if she'd been hit by a car?  She's recently decided that chasing them is fun (ever since a terrier did it to us when we were out on a country road).  What if she'd scared people?  What if she bit one, even accidentally if she thought they were playing? 

A man had been sitting in his car and marveled at my tenant's courage in grabbing the wild beast.  He was too afraid to face her wild eyes, and my tenant just scoffed. 

I can't even really think through all the bad things that could have happened.  She could have run away, been killed, been aggressive and reported.  It all comes back to: I don't want to lose my dog.  She grounds me, she is my ballast. 


Sunday, March 26, 2017

more good food

I just had a dinner of salmon cakes and cucumber-dill-feta salad.  Lunch was kale-potato-bean-sausage soup. 

I know how incredibly lucky I am to have the resources to eat so well.  I look forward to many frittatas in my future with eggs from my chickens (if Ziggy doesn't make a feast of them) and vegetables from my garden.  I don't even much like frittatas but I will learn to make them how I like.

Things are moving forward at the Stardust Homestead.  Tomorrow I am scheduled to get the garden bed which I will need to assemble and locate, and then I will order dirt.  Minimum of 6 cubic yards so I need a plan.  When I called to ask about it, I called a place that isn't super near so I'd never gone before despite hearing good things about them.  The delivery charge is $45, but when I add up the wear and tear of a full load multiple times on my truck along with the drive and having to take time off work - well, it's worth it to avoid doing it myself.  And the best part was the woman who answered the phone - what an absolute delight she was.  Before I knew it we were sharing gardening secrets and stories. 

I think that i will put the chickens in the back corner by the house with the man on power tools.  They're located right by AC units now and it doesn't bother them a bit.  I think the chickens will do very well here - they are curious and content.  They are also not unfamiliar with dogs and so they won't overreact to Ziggy, and my friends are very matter-of-fact and if the chickens die it's not the end of the world.  They didn't even name them this time.  I don't know the breed -they were generic "brown egg layers" but the hens seem on the small side.  I'll get them in two weeks.  I think I'll just order a damn coop because I'm not super crazy about theirs and the construction of a run is more than I need to do. 

The rooster is a lovely gent but his amor is making the hens super plucked and my friends think that they need to get rid of him.  Plus it's illegal to have a rooster in city limits.  I could probably get away with it and he does seem a lovely rooster other than that (he kept giving me the eye, a protective fellow), but with all the stress of moving to a new place and having a dog around more - I worry that the hens may turn on each other with the wounds he inflicts.  And I trust my friends' judgment. 

OK, time to read.  A friend just called wanting to stop by so I need to get on my game and finish work.  After I pack up the leftovers for lunch tomorrow.  Yum.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

coops on my mind

The chickens are mine for the taking.  I plan to go over and meet them this weekend.  If they're mean and ugly, I won't take them.  Chances of that are low, as they are my friends' beloved pets. 

The question becomes: how to introduce them and Ziggy Stardust. 

I've asked the behavioral vet and will put it out to some dog groups to see advice.  What I'm thinking is of putting them in the front yard for awhile in a tractor coop.  Let them rip up my lawn and prep it for gardening and save me the work! Then I can have Ziggy interact with them completely supervised by me. 

In the backyard I'd put their current coop and put up a fence around it as more protection, and move them there when I'm feeling like Ziggy won't rip through things to eat them.  She in general isn't a rip through things kind of dog, but one never knows and I want her to prove herself. 

The ideal would be that eventually I could have them roam free in the backyard (at least when I'm home) and Ziggy would have free access to the yard without my constant supervision and would be more protector than predator.  I don't know if that can happen with chickens we receive as adults, but it's good to have goals.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

bwak bwak

As I swung in the hammock today, I said to Ziggy: you know what this backyard is missing? Chickens.

And then I learned that a friend got a job across the country, and the last time I saw her she asked: so if I get this job, how many chickens will you take?

I think that if Ziggy were to raise chickens from babies that she would understand her role to protect them.  With older chickens, there would be training.  And maybe tragedy, but life would go on.  Well not for the prey, but yeah. 

IF I could train her right, Ziggy would LOVE having chickens.  A JOB!  She could protect them from all evil.  She could watch them and be entertained. 

Anyway, I'm not sure of this of course.  But it could be a lot of fun.  And tasty eggs and good fertilizer! 

no worms

I just ordered a raised bed kit because I NEED TO GROW THINGS and the grass in my front yard is way too thick to deal with anyway other than solarizing and that process won't be over until August and then there's cover crops to plant, and yeah.  A raised bed it is.  I had sworn off all purchases until I paid off my credit card, but ... yeah. 

Speaking of beds, my dog is on mine.  She slept with me last night.  Well part of the night at least.  And I don't know how to break up with my dog, but I don't sleep well with her in the bed and she's going to have to move back out onto the couch.  She never sleeps with me unless something's wrong, so who knows what's up. 

***
We went to the vet today.  ZIGGY IS HEARTWORM FREE!!  Also intestinal worm free.

The vet tech whom she ADORES was not at work today but as I was kind of whining about that, the vet (not the usual vet) said: "It's ok, Ziggy.  I'm his sister."

What!?  How cool is that?! 

Ziggy didn't buy it.  She wanted her Matthew.  Ziggy is NOT a feminist.  We'll work on that. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

and then there are days like today

Low-stress at work.  I ignore what irritates me.

Meeting with advisor went well.  Again he wishes that all students are like me. He doesn't mean it because I'm a pain in the ass, but I am motivated to finish and stay on track.  First step: choose committee.  His friend who lives elsewhere, whom I took a distance course with, offered to him last week again that he would be happy to be on my committee.  Which is kind.  And a stats prof I had recently said he would serve, and he's kind.  I'm going to contact my old advisor to see if he'll come along for the ride even though he's retired.  I miss him.  He's old and infirm but he's still kicking.  He's brilliant and he has always brought the best out in me intellectually.

That could be my committee.

And then we figure what I should be studying for exams.  And I start to draft a proposal.  I really need to get on that because I have ideas but they could be bullshit and I don't know yet.

"Yes, you are absolutely on track," he said, when he finally let me left.  My advisor likes talking.  We always have fun conversations.

The vet said taking Ziggy off Prozac is as easy as just not giving it to her anymore.

I spoke with an agility trainer who has reactive dogs and agreed to do private lessons with us until we can transition to a group class.

Then Ziggy and I sat outside, I swung in the hammock as she laid nearby, surveying her domain.

Then the tenant came home after a weekend away and we caught up.  Under the sunny skies. And when I researched some things for her I saw some interesting outdoorsy opportunities I want to take advantage of. Some iris spying and other such things.

My pile of horse manure was steaming hot this morning.  Literally.  That's what composting looks like!

***
So much more good stuff to report but I've got some bad eye strain so trying to limit time here.  Bad headache, no work today.  

In an excited state last night I emailed advisor asking what he thinks about me changing my dissertation topic to food.  I think that would be a lot more fun and I'd meet fun people in my research.  Mostly urban farming and gathering.  There's old stuff and new stuff with this. 

Ziggy and I just stopped at a tree to pick fruit that has a folk name in New Orleans, which HNIC's son is obsessed with.  Truly obsessed.  And he'll move on but for right now it's really fascinating to watch his journey with this.  He's trying to make his living hustling with this fruit - making products from the fruit itself as well as using the local name for other commercial entertainment ventures.  Credit to him for giving me some good ideas, like the thousands of times his father did. 

And I've realized that so much of me wanting to move West is because I mss my closest friends and life is short.  BFF is years older than HNIC was when he died and The Driver, whose 1-year-death anniversary just passed.  I want to be close to my people.  We're not immortal. 

But, that will wait.  OR I will learn to live with the fear of loss. 






Sunday, March 19, 2017

wild boar sausage

I just spent more than I wanted to on wild boar sausage, and most of it will go to the dog because it's with pork and I don't really eat pork, but I'll let it other foods season a bit. 

I like local food.  There was this wild boar sausage made in Louisiana and a venison sausage made in TX, but that had nitrates in it.  Plus, Catahoulas are bred for hunting wild boars, so this was really made for the Z'Dust.  And while it's not cheap, it's cheaper than dog treats better than Milk-Bone.  (I tried to take Ziggy for a walk on a long line to work on recall but as soon as she realized all I had were boring kibble and dry biscuit treats, I was dead to her.  I'm always in the market for high-reward treats that don't make me second guess myself.  I won't give her much cheese, no sugar, low salt, etc.  But yesterday I caught her counter surfing to lick the knife that had marionberry jam on it so I can't judge her tastes as anything but excellent.  She got pieces of chicken that I'd cooked with artichoke hearts and tomatoes and mozzarella and she was very delighted to do anything for that.)

Wild boars can be really destructive and hunting them humanely is good for the ecosystem balance.  Turning them into an edible sausage is way better than letting their carcasses rot in a landfill.  And maybe it's hype but when I look at the website of this company, I see local jobs and a mission - they give profits to reforestation projects, that sort of thing.  So, we'll see how it tastes. 

There are interesting food things here.  It's unfair of me to say that I don't like the food here - I just mean the really heavy stuff in restaurants.  There are plenty of things to appreciate.  Like red beans on Mondays.  And there is a local fresh food scene that I just need to devote my resources to.  It is more expensive, but if food is going to be my greatest expense then I may as well speak with my wallet.

My goal too is to wean myself off of Costco.  I just paid to renew my membership because I was standing there with the fantastic feta I can get there, and the organic ground beef, and the tuna I really like - oh and the lunch-sized portions of fried rice that make life possible.  But, I can move away from Costco and not renew again. And if I really want something there, I can go with friends who have a membership.  

The thing to always remember about New Orleans is that electricity is fragile.  In a storm, we can easily go without for ten days.  Everything in the freezer dies and that really sucks.  So, freezing - the way I grew up preserving food - isn't the best here.  No need to stock up. 

And, some things are great prices there - like the avocado oil I've gotten accustomed to using.  But I have five pounds of almonds in my cupboard and am completely at a loss of what to do with what seemed like a great purchase idea. And a $55/year membership cost distributed over the cost of those great deals - well, it's not something that most single people need, probably. 

The main reason I went to the store was to get tuna in oil for the dog.  To make high-reward treats for her.  And then I got these ice cream bars that I'd heard the guys speak of on the radio - the outside is locally-roasted frozen coffee (fair trade) and the inside is locally-made ice cream.  I am here to tell you: that's two great tastes that taste great together.  Yum.  A special treat for all the manure I hauled.  It was a truckload, and now it's in a big pile in my front yard.  I'll turn it every so often, keep it damp.  IT's a lot of horse urine on pine bedding and fresh alfalfa, and when I was grabbing it (I push it into a bucket and dump in the back of the truck), it was already all hot inside.  Nice composting magic there.

And were I not to make compost, it would go to the landfill.  I break onto police property to get to this stable and crawl into a dumpster.  It's not glamorous. 

If you're here for the glamor, keep moving on. 

Saturday, March 18, 2017

algebra

I just did some math. 

If I leave my job in, say, 2 years and 2 months, then I could pull out my contributions to the pension plan.  That would be "x."  (I would turn around and reinvest it, so let's assume 8% interest until I'm 60.  And because I don't recall how to calculate capitalized interest, let's just round it to 2x.) 

If I stay in my job for another 2 years and 3 months, then I will be eligible to receive a pension beginning when I'm 60 and going until I die (and eligibility for health insurance then, which is a concern in this regime - I would have to pay, but cheaper than market rates).  If I live until 80, that would be "y."  y= 9x

The value of staying in my job for another two years and three months is y-2x.  And that would be equivalent to approximately three years of salary after taxes.  Well, maybe two and a half - a lot of my deductions aren't tax but instead are investments and such. 

But still.

The bottom line is that if I were to stay here until I finish my PhD, then the financial benefit to me is really significant - like not having to work an extra 2.5 years into retirement. 

I may not live to 80.  I may.  I may live to 100, and then it's so incredibly worth it. 

I may die before 60 and then my survivors would get the lump sum payout.

Maybe I did the math wrong here.  I'm tired.  But it looks right.  It looks like such a no-brainer that I need to suck it up and ride on for at least until July 2019.  Which is when I plan to have a massive roadtrip, perhaps with new vehicle, definitely with hound.  (If the Kia Niro is with AWD then.) 

OF course, when have I ever let money be my primary motivation? 



but there's no marathon tomorrow

Today I just could not be bothered to go to the store and I thought that baking bread sounded like a fabulous idea. 

Oh, right.  I don't bake bread because then I eat bread.  Sigh.  The question is not: why does bread make me fat?  The question is: why am I not fatter?  Because even though it was not my best loaf of bread by a longshot, slathered in marionberry jam it is still magnificent. 


into the woods

Today I went to lunch with a friend who works for the same organization - but in a totally different department so we never see each other.  In fact, I thought he'd moved - which was his plan when I last saw him.  But, he and his boyfriend broke up and the need to move with him abated. So, he's still here.  Discontent.  Not actively, just sort of like: meh, is this it?  I want more.

And I told him why I'm still at my job: because what kind of privilege do I have on my ass to think that a job should be fulfilling?  Seriously, a job is good if it pays bills to appreciate other parts of life, and that's all you can really expect.  More is lagniappe, and I need to stop my belly aching about the bullshit.

But we're both ready to move on.  Waiting for magic to happen.

And one of my best friends called and we had a long talk.  We don't call often, we're more the kind to show up.  I miss her and her family and I miss living with them in a crazy world of Costco food and baseball clothes.  Last I lived there, I was recovering from chikungunya and I was pretty miserable and didn't want to explore amazing hiking.  Not at all.

But now?

Well, I wouldn't live with them - they also have a dog who has behavioral challenges with other dogs.  She would not appreciate Ziggy's bluster.

But Ziggy's godmother is two hours away, with a room for us.  It's a very provincial place, exasperatingly so.  But it's with national forest on two sides and I have countless memories of hiking with Selma.  It also has a very good healthy food scene with many options.

Why is it that right now what I'm most obsessed with it wilderness and good food?  I know it's privilege speaking, but going to a regular grocery store fills me with dismay with the ridiculously processed garbage that people are eating.  That I eat, when I go there.  Of course there is ridiculously processed garbage at Trader Joe and Whole Foods and the farmers markets, but it's easier to balance with strawberries and kale and oat bran.  On a regular basis I eat minimally processed foods and I feel pretty good - I'd feel better without sugar and limited carbs, but I'm doing pretty well.  (Upcoming menu: feta/beet/kale/farro salad; mizuna (from garden) with potatoes; tacos; cabbage stir fry; maybe some bread.)

What concerns me is my retreat from social justice.  I would rather go live in Oregon with its legal marijuana than keep up the struggle here?  What is wrong with me?  

I want to go camping, and one of my other best friends lives there as well and her children are now expert campers who are DFW.  They are wild ones, Ziggy's soulmates.  Their mother and I spent so very many hours in high school berry picking, camping, hiking - the things I want back in my life.  And the freedom provided by having a place for my dog to be that is not an inconvenience is so freeing.

I looked at staff jobs at my undergrad alma mater and I may apply.  I could get my PhD from someplace better than where I am now, at no cost. 

And yes, it always feels so confining there in Oregon - with all the lawabiding and blinding whiteness.  I have not forgotten.  So maybe I wouldn't buy a house there, maybe I would be there for a while until other priorities emerge.  Maybe I would buy a cabin in the woods and live there on weekends.  Maybe go back to teaching and become an administrator and work on school reform. 

Well, it's all a pipe dream.  I would have to buckle down and apply and have a whole lotta luck. 

Truth is: I'm really comfortable right where I am.  Uncomfortable too. 

What I love about New Orleans is: the diversity, the local people, the smell of the air, the architecture.  I don't love the parades, the tourist scene, the food - the things that most people live for here.  These things don't appeal to me.  The crime is frightening, the corruption, the perpetuation of inequality.  Can I do anything about those things?  I haven't figured it out.  Maybe I need to step back and think about it.  Maybe it's ok to leave for awhile. 

Or maybe I'm just running away like a coward when faced with the enormity of the task ahead and just want to eat some pot-laced chocolate and go Walden with the Z-Dust. 

Or maybe this is continued grieving for one of the people I loved most here and his guidance.  Maybe it's just hard to live in a place with so many shared memories with him.  Maybe his death put into perspective that life is damn short. 

Maybe it's grieving for friendships here that aren't really standing the test of time and grumpiness.  Maybe my job is making me so misanthropic that I am unable to put energy into relationships. 

Maybe Summer Coming is an unpleasant thought. 

Maybe approaching 50 makes me want to be closer with the people I love most.  To return to the place that nurtured my desire for communal living.  People here live that way but it is usually by family relationships - there it is with chosen bonds. 

Maybe I want better quality of life for my dog, who is (so far) fantastic on hikes. 

I just really really really miss the wilderness, and I may not always have the physical ability to enjoy it as I can now.  And maybe I don't really want a PhD but instead a degree in ecology, and working at a very good university could make it happen.  Or maybe I want both.

Life is short. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Ozarks

Somebody I know professionally just got his dream promotion, leaving his job possibly open in the future at some unknown time. 

I said, shamelessly: "Well, if you want me to apply, keep me looped in."

Ball in his court because he'd be my boss. 

I realize within about three minutes, I would drop everything to move for that job because it's in Arkansas.  NEAR NATIONAL FORESTS. 

Good lord people, this lack of hiking is KILLING ME. 

And it's a seven hour drive, so I could keep a pied de terre here.  If I so desired. 

I don't know that it will be a possibility.  Probably a promotion from within. 

But, it's telling how quickly I was ready to give up everything here. 

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

in the woods

Today Ziggy and I skipped out on life and headed to the forest, where we went for some walks.  I haven't found the best places for us to walk yet, so there were some shortish walks and then "turn around, let's go back and try another way."  There was a fair amount of mud and water to stop me, as well as deep brush.  I was hoping for us to go on an official trail but there were about four vehicles there and people hanging out at campsites and so ... um, no.  I could keep her on a long line until we're up the trail a bit (so she won't try to raid the camps) and then hope for the best if we encounter other people and dogs, but I wasn't really feeling it. 

So, I'm glad we checked it out before planning to camp there.

Our last stop was the spot I'd found before - well, Ziggy found it actually I think - that seems like a great spot to camp.  It's very shady which could mean buggy, but I think it's worth a shot.  It's so peaceful.  I'd also take trash bags to pick up after people.  Today I saw a discarded needle so, yeah.  There's that to think about.

This of course really makes me miss the west.  I miss all the long hikes with the dogs I've known and loved, especially in Alaska.  Oh, how I miss Alaska.  Sigh.  

I checked out entirely from work - no checking email today and I even turned off my work phone.  If they are going to never give me credit for fucking anything, if I'm always going to be their whipping girl, then FUCK THEM.  I'm not on call on my days off.  I'm so frustrated and pissed off about my stupid fuck job, and I needed a break, and this did me good.

And it made me remember AGAIN that I am fortunate, but that I really need to use my time off for my own damn purposes.  I need to do more important things, or more interesting things.  I am hardwired for my job to define me, but this job is stupid, so I need things OUTSIDE that. And of course a really bad side effect of the job is that I distance myself and don't trust people even outside of work - I just want to be alone with my dog, who is trustworthy.  People suck.  So I need important interesting interests that don't require me to spend much time with other people.

My dog is trustworthy and also clingy.  We got back from our long drives and walks and all she wanted to do was sit and stare at me.  Now she only wants to be as close to me as physically possible.  I went to class and I'm sure she thought I was going out to the forest again without her.

I wish we lived nearer.  It's 1.5 hour drive. 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

a Ziggy twin?

Scrolling through Facebook ... I get a lot of posts now about dogs because of some groups I joined.  Giving advice, reading others' - it's helpful.

And then I see this picture:

Image may contain: dog

and I think OHMYGOSH somebody has a dog that looks EXACTLY LIKE ZIGGY STARDUST!  Who is this???  We must immediately become friends!

And then I realize that my tenant is posting a picture of my dog lounging on her bed. 

And it's even better because the more love Ziggy lives, the better. 

bad food

Dinner yesterday was rejected forcefully from my body.  It was fish (frozen, from Costco - I'd eaten the other pieces from that bag with no problem) and roasted green beans (with oil and salt and pepper) which had been washed.  How did this meal make me sick?  I'm perplexed.  The stomach upset started shortly after eating so I'm pretty sure it's that.  What I ate before that was watermelon. 

So happy daylight saving time - the morning is mostly gone with the combination of losing an hour and not sleeping much of the night for trips to the bathroom.

Lots of reading and writing to do today for class. 

***
Instead, I drove all over Louisiana. 

Ziggy had a bad experience earlier with this week (I was told a dog was friendly and calm, but instead was aggressively territorial and that of course freaked Z out).  So, I arranged a playdate with her go-to BFF, Roux.  They are comfortable together.  I don't think that they would particularly choose to be friends if there were other choices, but because their people are friends and Roux's people are awesome and willing to watch Ziggy for me on occasion, Roux and Ziggy and companions. And Roux is pretty chill and doesn't freak out when Ziggy is freaking out, so it's good.

Roux's people had just bought a new car so invited me along for a drive and lunch and we left the dogs to their own devices - which sounded good to all us humans because Ziggy can be barky with Roux, and they seem to do better when people aren't around.  (We have all come home to them after being left alone, and they are always crashed out near each other.) 

And we drove and drove and drove.  Saw some things I'd not seen before.  Ate lunch (my stomach is somewhat better) and drove back.  Louisiana is a fun place to sightsee, I think. Though, better when I don't have two papers to write and multiple books to read. 

We got back to their house and the dogs tore out the backdoor and ignored the other two people and ran for me and wouldn't leave me.  Could it be that Ziggy has finally bonded to me and considers me her #1 favorite person?  Maybe.  Roux goes where Ziggy goes and where there are treats.  And Roux knows I always have treats for him.  Ziggy was not amused with my disappearance and she was stuck to me like glue. 

Hours later, we're back home. Who knew those papers wouldn't write themselves?  Time to get to it. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

nothing to report

To those who've asked - sorry for the blog silence.  No reason, just nothing interesting to write.  It's all the same old, same old. 

Here's good news: this morning Ziggy came to get me out of bed.  She hasn't done that since the heartworm treatment started back in November - at least I think that's when it stopped.  She used to always be my little alarm clock and I've missed our morning snuggles, so that was nice.  We had a bad experience yesterday evening - I took her to my old house to get mail because I'd been told that tenant's dog is very calm and friendly.  BULLSHIT.  Territorial aggression and it sent Ziggy over the edge and she was sad because WHY DOESN'T EVERYBODY LOVE ME???  She was quite upset with the whole thing that went down and completely over threshold (wouldn't eat the best treats), but it's not all bad because her calming down mechanisms involve a whole lot of love to me.  She just wants to snuggle, sit at my feet, be near me.  She's a hoot and a half - she realized what I do in the bathroom and now when I go to the toilet, she runs outside to do her own bathrooming.  What a funny mimicing dog. 

Friday, March 3, 2017

showing up

It's Friday.

I've been struggling with the inertia that comes of depression, which hopefully passes soon.  Otherwise I feel entirely overwhelmed.

Last night I went to see anti-racism Tim Wise speak and the first question from the audience really got me: basically, how do we get white people to the Racism 102 class?  People are willing to talk the talk, but how to change policies and practices that hurt people of color?  This takes place in such ways as gentrification, employment, etc.

That is such a good question.  One later said - it's not just about being an ally, it's about solidarity. 

So how am I stepping up?   This is something to consider and act on, and all that.