Saturday, March 27, 2010

Adventures in Deaf Dog Sitting

I love dogs. Up until I moved to New York I have always had a dog in my life that I could steal/play with/fawn over. First there was Boxie thus named because he slept in a box in my sister’s room. I couldn’t talk so there wasn’t much of a debate when it came to naming the dog. He was around until a little after my 15th birthday and I am still convinced that he was my mother’s favorite child. After he passed, we buried him in the backyard and planted a sapling on top. This sapling grew up to be a strong tree that has survived several hurricanes and blistering summers in the Florida sun.

I would be remiss to mention the stray cat we took in when my sister was in 9th grade. Some future sociopath threw a bag over the fence of our house on Christmas. When my Dad opened the bag he saw a poor bloody and broken black kitten. My father couldn’t bear to have the poor creature’s final hours be spent in the “cold” of winter without knowing any kindness. So, he took the black cat my sister named Chat Noir (black cat in French) into our home where she lived until this last fall. My parents buried her next to Boxie’s tree which is fair considering the cat never quiet got that she was a cat but instead acted like Boxie’s child.

College brought me one of the best behaved dogs I have ever met. You could imagine my surprise when I was greeted at the McCain’s by Joan, a baby, and the prettiest chocolate brown lab I ever saw. Moxie stood in the door jamb as regal as a show dog that had been awarded the Best of show. I loved that dog. I loved house sitting for her, I loved taking her out, feeding her, going to the vet, everything. For some odd reason I could feel that Moxie was actually grateful when you did things for her. She would look at you and nuzzle your leg as a thank you. Not to mention the abuse she would take from the kids who wanted to ride her as a pony. I don’t think I have ever been as heart broken my entire life as when she died to the point that thinking about it gets me misty.

Currently, I just have my Ruby, Sadie, Luca, and Bella to fixate on but I can’t ever pet them because they are miles away.

You might be wonder why the face with the Old Yeller rerun accompanied by “The House That Built Me” or I thought this blog was funny (sometimes). I swear gentle reader (Hi Mom) that this will all make sense. Ali was the same way. She was raised with her precious Peaches who also sadly passed recently. You see it is this internal longing for a dog (preferably a Chocolate Brown Lab Girl named Grant) that is the reason why Ali and I will dog sit for ANYONE (seriously I have references). Ali’s boss Ray got himself a dog last year. A sweet rescue dog that happens to be deaf that is called Scout. Now this is funny because through grades 3-7 I was called Scout as a derogatory slur towards my goody toe-shoes ness. Obviously, these people did not know me or just thought the horned rimmed glasses I was rocking with my Superman tee shirt meant I was some kind of Latin Clark Kent.

Ali and Ray are off at the Kids Choice Awards not seeing Sandra Bullock (Vanilla Gorilla – WTF?) and they left Scout with my next door neighbor David. Well, David needed my help for the evening and of course I jumped on it like it was a trampoline when I was in second grade. It was also the night of Amanda’s going away party from the 622 (my old office building). Now Mom this is the part where you stop reading and anyone else that is bored at work continues. Thanks.

So I may or may not allegedly have skipped lunch and then started drinking. It happens to the best of us (when we are 21 and carrying our collegiate amateur status card) but not to professionals like me. I behaved myself because I knew at 7 I had a doggy date. I waltzed home and grabbed Scout for our walk. Now gentle reader let’s think about this. The 50+ pound deaf dog went on a walk with a slightly inebriated clumsy boy for a walk. I decided that this needed my full attention so I left my iPod at home and didn’t even get on my cell phone after I sent a quick text pick bragging about my ward. I know you are all shocked that my phone left my hand and a drink wasn’t involved.

We managed to do fairly well together until we got to 10th Ave. and 49th street. Scout would not move. She was insistent to the point of belligerence that she was crossing that street and going to the Hudson. Sully would have been proud of her dedication to the cause. It dawned on me how stupid one must look fighting with a deaf dog because I wasn’t talking to her (She’s deaf) so it was more of a physical exchange and visual pleading. People must have been like “why doesn’t the moron just call her?” I felt like Carrie Bradshaw when she took Pete out for a walk and the dog got the runs on the street and she is explaining to people “He’s not my dog”. Later I was told there was a dog park just down the street which was probably what Scout was after. Finally Scout relented because the wind changed and something caught her smell.

We were walking down 10th back to home when she came across two other dogs. The guy walking them was yelling commands and being all Cesar the dog whisperer while I am just holding the chain. The boy dog totally wanted to tap Scout but the girl dog was all fierce and growling. Scout of course just stood there all happy oblivious to this exchange and then trying to sniff her new friends. The guy looks at me and asks me why I am not doing anything. I look at him and say “Dude, my Dog’s deaf what do you want me to do?” But, seriously, what am I supposed to do? The guy lost his attitude and managed to yank his dogs away. Scout looked at me licked her nose and moved on.

When we got home I ordered myself some Mac and Cheese from Eatery with a side of DVR to celebrate. Scout sniffed around the apartment for awhile but quickly lost interest with me and sat herself in front of the front door and gave me the look that I usually only get on first dates. You know the look – the one that screams “seriously let me out of here I have more important things to do then hang out with you - like licking myself and drinking out of toilets.” I took her home and in that short time was defeated because Eatery called and said they couldn’t deliver for some b.s. reason. I had no choice but to cook (i.e. call Vynl) and plop down for some Mean Girls and Modern Family. Overall a success.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Dancing Through Life

It’s a weird feeling when you come home and an extended period of time has passed. There is this vibe like someone has been in my room but I don’t know what is different. At first I was thinking that being back to work reminded me of coming back to school after summer vacation. You have those few days where you wobble but then manage to come roaring back. It feels like that but extended to every aspect of my life. Couples broke up, couples got together, and the world kept turning. It has been interesting to suss out what events were shocking happened and are now deemed minor. Almost like a live episode of LOST.

I had an amazing pantry break with the effervescent Kevin Bacon of the Mormon world Karyn where we chatted and it is interesting to me how every time I talk to her she manages to understand everything I am saying even though it is twangy, slurred, and nonsensical. Then again it isn’t hard to discern what “I can’t feel my face” means in my world. She always manages to provide brilliant insight and an awesome sounding board. She is also quiet a little blogger.

One thing that has bothered me to no end is the failure that is masquerading as American Idol Season 9. Firstly, I like Kara. I don’t care if you turn on me but Kara knows what she is talking about even if she does seem very annoying. She has always made sense to me but, I am use to people hating her. It is weird to find people (all 12 that watch AI this year) like her. It is even weirder to see Ellen who came on strong and then flamed out as a judge. It is also torturous because Naomi from 90210 was calling herself Katelyn and got eliminated. Like Ms. Clark would go out before being able to go on tour? Basically, this season blows.

Speaking of blowing, thine name is Survivor. Yes, I still watch it. No, I won’t finish this season. CLEARLY it is going to be Pavarti Vs another winner at the end.

Lastly Glee, my precious Glee, I am worried about our relationship. It is one thing to have a concert tour it is another to think you are going to pull off a Broadway show. Don’t believe me? Ask the carcass that is Spider-Man. If Peter Parker can’t do it what makes you think you can? Especially because part of it (and by part I mean 2/3 rds of the main draw would be having Lea and Matthew back on the great B-way). How are you going to pull that off and still film? Why don’t you just focus on what I REALLY want which is summer episodes. I have always hated how summer is skipped or briefly mentioned on teen shows. The only shows that did it Right Saved by Mr. Carosi and 90210’s summer season.

Finally, I am finding myself obsessed with Joshua James’ “Lovers without Love”. It is a hauntingly beautiful song that according to iTunes I have heard 25 times this week. Opps. The link for it is:

Thursday, March 18, 2010

St. Patty's

I was devastated that one of my favorite holidays ended without my favorite annual tradition: Guess the Walk of Shame. You see my legion (hi Mom), every year I love walking to my Starbucks, getting my Grande caramel macchiato, and then walking to work with my iPod blaring as I watch people do the walk of shame. Now, in Hell's Kitchen the walk of shame has classic signs.

1. The outfit is way to night vs day. Plus the heels are usually higher than any cast member from a Dr. Drew show.

2. They usually trip, fall, or run into someone/thing. I prefer the trifecta when they do all three.

3. The large bottle of water.

4. The large coffee.

5. If I am REALLY lucky the caked on makeup.

and lastly, my personal favorite:

6. The what-the-hell-just-happened expression as the person of interest is trying to piece the night together look as they realize they have no idea where they are in the city. BONUS points if they ask for directions.

Now seeing this gives me a glow that last way past my afternoon lunch and into my 4:20 snack time. The fact that I didn't see ANYONE do this makes me start to wonder have people grown up and bought some self respect at Duane Reade? Or did the amateurs stay home on St. Patty's? Neither of these are acceptable to me. Hopefully this will be resolved by Cinco de Mayo.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Khe Sanh

“Well the last plane of Sydney's almost gone.” From Cold Chisel’s .

Dear Reader(s):

If you haven’t figured it out by now your guide is just making this up as he goes along. You see, he has this quirk where he flashes forward way to often and a smile and hello leads to visions of Gardenias wrapped in brown and pink satin. He also has a problem of letting go of the past which is why this blog is a bit behind. You see in his mind, he thinks that if he can delay posting his final Sydney blog that he is still there and not really trapped in a 9x9 office with a view of a derelict building watching rain and or snow fall. Instead, he is having a rerun of his perfect Friday.

The day started off with the usual coffee and banana bread with a Tim Tam for good measure. From there the minutes flew while we fed, changed, fed, changed, changed then fed the Chupacabra. She went down for her afternoon nap so Iris took me out to lunch to “celebrate” my last day. Obviously, this is not something I wanted to celebrate. In fact it is the opposite of celebration and more of banishment. Or to put it back in Buffy terms I was in heaven. I think I was in heaven.

The food was great at our little bistro by the sea and we continued our chat about life, love and the pursuit of an episode of the View where Elizabeth doesn’t come across so sanctimonious. We did our 4 o’clock walk along the beach with me rocking the Bjorn and got our picture taken. The usual exchange with my sister occurred recounting my love life and its’ future occurred while my sister nodded her head and attempted to sound interested. I kid, my sister was enthralled, and by enthralled I mean she stayed awake. We passed this street artist who had been there several times during our walk and he sold us a painting of the beach which I have at my house. Later on we went to dinner at the Awaba café (where I get our breakfast) and had a nice dinner talking about things in generalities while trying to talk in specifics. It was funny though because Matt thinks that constant contact with someone makes it less meaningful AND less efficient. Obviously the over communicative pairing of Iris and I disagreed profusely. I still think there is nothing wrong with talking to my sister daily. We get all of the good stuff out of the way quickly and then when something major happens we can discuss that instead of getting through the pain of the automatic how’s work, etc. topics.

I did my last nightly feed and had a great little chat with my Elle who cooed and burped when appropriate. Ironically it was one of the best conversations I have had in a long while. Saturday brought a tender moment where my sister and the baby sat on the bed with me while we chatted and played. Weirdly it made me flashback to when I was in 8th grade and my beloved Caroline Powell was moving back to England causing me my first great heart break of my young life.

I still remember feeling too stupid to talk to my parents about it and my arch nemesis (Iris) finding out about it. I locked myself in my room as moody teenage boys are prone to do and cried my eyes out. When there was a knock on my door I knew I was doomed for a lifetime of teasing for my moment of weakness. Instead, Iris took me to her room and held me until I cried myself to sleep. The next morning we acted as nothing had happened and were still as adversarial as ever but with a hint of understanding and a glimmer of compassion.

I rejoined the present thanks to a well placed diaper change and then finished packing my room. We took a few more pictures and shared a few more precious moments before the cab came to take me away. I managed to dry my eyes long enough to get on my flight before heading back to a place that even though was familiar was far more foreign and far colder with only a few nuggets of memory to keep me warm.