First Day of Spring

It was a little chilly and blustery, but not bad. The best part was all the bright sunshine, which came after early morning thunderstorms which woke me up around 4:30 a.m. with two big loud thunderclaps.

We took the dog to check out Bird Hill Park, which is supposedly the largest in AA, but parking areas were muddy and trails were dirt, which meant more mud. We found one parking area off Newport Road, but an unleashed Doberman was being allowed full use, so we scrubbed that.

We ended up at Barton Dam Park, where there were lots of dogs, but it wasn’t too bad. We explored the area, which is really kinda nice, wore out the dog and then I drove through the Country Club area, which has a ‘private road’ posted with very obnoxious signs that might as well have said ‘you’re not a rich bitch in an SUV so you have no bidness up in here with us rich white folk. We got some stares, but I drove on through anyway. At one point, some snooty woman in a Suburban on her cell phone pulled out of the country club parking lot and followed us all the way out and through town. I thought she might use her phone to report that riff-raff were trying to drive through her snot town.

We scored many mega videos at the Mallett’s Creek branch library and came home.

Today is cold, blustery and not as sunny. Frank went to the store, dropped a bag and broke a jar of jelly and some eggs. Didn’t have a good trip. He made breakfast and now I’m going to take a long bath and then work on the konacasa.com site while watching movies.

Redesign Pretty Much Done

The site redesign, which took me two laborious weeks, is for all intents and purposes finished. How I’m gonna keep up all these ‘blogs, I dunno, but it’s a nice concept and let’s me do some different creative things, especially writing for writing’s sake.

It’s cold and snowy. I woke up with a sinus headache and having to face the fourth graders from hell. It was painful, but I made it through okay, then went to CVS and got some naproxen and came home and took it and a nap. Got up at 7, kinda groggy, but I’ve been wide awake since and got quite a bit of work done.

Biggest pressing issues now are to come up with text for the consulting section, finish all those tedious galleries and do two design choices for Casa Emdeko and especially to get cracking on FII stuff, they’ve waited far too long.

But it’s almost 01:00 and I’m toasted …

Redesigned Rants

The redesign is finally pretty much finished, with just minor tweaking to go. Like it?

Let’s see what’s happening in our glorious empire today, shall we?

Looks like the assault on the last minority it is acceptable to hate continues apace in the federal bureaucracy «as the Special Fascist Counsel strips gay and lesbian federal workers of job protections»:

‘Gay and lesbians in the entire federal workforce have had their job protections officially removed by the office of Special Counsel. The new Special Counsel, Scott Bloch, says his interpretation of a 1978 law intended to protect employees and job applicants from adverse personnel actions is that gay and lesbian workers are not covered. Bloch said that the while a gay employee would have no recourse for being fired or demoted for being gay, that same worker could not be fired for attending a gay Pride event. In his interpretation, Bloch is making a distinction between one’s conduct as a gay or lesbian and one’s status as a gay or lesbian.’
365Gay.com

Why don’t they just lump stuff like this and the FMA (Fascist Marriage Amendment) into one great package and name them what they are … Amerikkka’s Nuremberg Laws? I think I’ll start cutting out my pink triangles now so I can get them sewn on all my clothes now. Will save time later.

Especially since «the idea of a gay purge was seriously floated in Tennessee today»:

‘The county that was the site of the Scopes “Monkey Trial” over the teaching of evolution is asking lawmakers to amend state law so the county can charge homosexuals with crimes against nature. The Rhea County commissioners approved the request 8-0 Tuesday. Commissioner J.C. Fugate, who introduced the measure, also asked the county attorney to find a way to enact an ordinance banning homosexuals from living in the county. “We need to keep them out of here,” Fugate said.’
SFGate.com

The Nazis had a word for such purges of Jews from the Reich: Judenrein, or Free of Jews. And today, people are seriously pushing to make Rhea County, Tennessee Gayrein. What century is this?

I think I’ll start wearing that pink triangle if Rhea County succeeds in its fascist purge and especially if the FMA passes the House. It’s time to start calling this filth what it is and to hold its purveyors accountable.

Turning to other news, «the Boy Emperor received his greatest endorsement today: Al Qaeda want Bush ‘re-elected’ in November»:

‘The statement said it supported … Bush in his reelection campaign, and would prefer him to win in November rather than the Democratic candidate John Kerry, as it was not possible to find a leader “more foolish than you (Bush), who deals with matters by force rather than with wisdom.” In comments addressed to Bush, the group said: “Kerry will kill our nation while it sleeps because he and the Democrats have the cunning to embellish blasphemy and present it to the Arab and Muslim nation as civilization.” “Because of this we desire you (Bush) to be elected.” The group said its cells were ready for another attack and time was running out for allies of the United States. “Whose turn is it next? Will it be Japan or America, or Italy, Britain or Oslo or Australia?” the statement said, adding Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were also targets.’
Yahoo News

Isn’t that grand? Foreign democratic leaders support Kerry; Al Qaeda likes our chief Fascist because he plays right into their hands. That pretty much sums it up for me.

Back in the empire, «the movement to censure the Boy Emperor is building»:

‘Families of soldiers serving, as well as of those who have been casualties, in the occupation of Iraq came to Capitol Hill today with other volunteers, urging Congress to censure … George W. Bush. Meanwhile, volunteers carried petitions that filled 18 large boxes, signed so far by 560,340 members of MoveOn.org from every congressional district, to each office in the House of Representatives, reinforcing the demand for a censure resolution. The groups also displayed print and TV ads that will begin running this week. “My son, Army Lt. Seth Dvorin, who died last month while serving in Iraq, met his responsibility to the nation he loved,” said Sue Niederer of Pennington, NJ. “As his mother, I am joining hundreds of thousands of Americans today in asking that the Congress of the United States meet its responsibility, as well.” Tom Andrews, national director of Win Without War, said the combined activities represent an escalation of efforts that will continue. “The truth matters. By not holding [the Boy Emperor] accountable, the Congress is saying it doesn’t. This is unacceptable,” said Andrews, a former congressman and member of the Armed Services Committee.’ …
‘Speaking for herself and other military families, Ms. Niederer said: “Our message to Congress today is clear: spare us the platitudes, the pious rhetoric, the empty slogans. Give us the truth. Do your job and hold those accountable who have denied us the truth. Censure … Bush for the deceptions and manipulations that led our nation to war. You owe the American people, my son and all those patriots who have sacrificed for their nation no less.”’
PR Newswire

I agree. «Everyone should go sign the censure petition immediately.». The first step in regaining our country is to hold the fascists accountable. Go, do your duty lad!

Good night, y’all.

Artemis Comes Home

Artemis is to be cremated today and finally gets to come home to rest. Hard to believe she’s gone. I still get kinda weepy whenever I think about her and I know the pain that Don and Jean and Linda must be feeling today. I wish I could do something.

Because I’ve been there before. Sugar, my little adorable mutt, was shot in the leg by some asshole when we were taking one of our usual walks in the woods behind our house in the country east of Duncan when I was 13. We took her to the vet, but short of major surgery (with no guarantee she could walk again) and expense (which we didn’t have), there was nothing that could be done. She had to be put down. I bawled and squalled and left her lying there so the vet could do the deed. Truly one of the worst experiences of my life. It still has the power to hurt me some 27 years later.

Losing Artemis is certainly worse. Just as losing Bayley will be. Unlike Sugar, he came to me as a puppy of just seven weeks old and we’ve shared close quarters ever since. With the exception of my travels (the longest of which was two weeks), we’ve spent every day of almost 10 years together. Don had the same thing with Artemis over 14 years. Sugar came to me as a mutt and I had her maybe two years or so. Losing Artemis is so much worse, almost like losing a child.

Dog non-lovers, like my family, will never, ever understand it, even as they condescendingly dismiss it or lash out at it. Yes, they are ‘just’ dogs, but they’re also so much more than that. And until you’ve experienced that unconditional love and support and dependence and trust, you have no right to talk.

I suppose the deed must done by now and she’s safely back home. I can’t believe she’s gone. Beagles are getting extra hugs today.

Cough Getting Better

The cough is finally better today. I think the key must be the inhaler. Is my asthma actually going to be this much worse up here? If so, gonna be a long year-and-a-half. Also helping is Actifed and cough syrup.

But geez. This is the third round of this mess I’ve had since we moved here. There must some native flora that massively disagrees with me. I’m really sick of this stuff.

Dreamworld

I had a vivid dream this morning. We lived in Palm Springs and so did my parents. Frank and I went out for our anniversary dinner and I asked him if he was having fun. He said, ‘Eh,’ and I got upset and left.

We drove over to my parents, who we thought weren’t home. I began making coffee, and then suddenly Scott drove up in a TransAm and started talking to us. Suddenly my dad came out of the bedroom and was talking to himself, then he left.

There was a cobweb infestation all over the front garage of their house. I took a broom to the webs, but they were respun almost as fast as I could clear them. Scott and Frank were just sitting in the living room talking.

I think my mother came in, and then I woke up.

I’m sure Freud could have fun with that one.

Farewell, Artemis the Sweet

Picture of Artemis of the Hunt

The rainy weather here in Ann Arbor is appropriately weepy this morning. It is with a very heavy heart that I have to note the passing of Artemis, the sweetest, most wonderful black lab in the world.

Artemis’ dad, Don, called me this morning from Oklahoma City with the news that she left us Friday after an exhausting battle against cancer. She was 14.

Artemis of the Hunt was born in Bristow, OK, on 23-Dec-89. I remember when they brought puppy Artie home to Duncan; she was so sweet, with those big paws and gangly legs. We had so much fun. I always referred to her as my one and only girlfriend. It was extremely sad when they moved away in 1992; but we still got to see each other fairly often even as I moved around the country, and she would sometimes sleep with me on the twin guest bed, which was always a fun experience having a very large and heavy lab jump on your legs in the middle of the night. I miss that feeling.

We saw Artie-moose last August, on our way from San Francisco to Ann Arbor. She was as sweet as ever, just showing the effects of her age. She still was able to jump into the back seat of Don’s car when they got ready to go somewhere, happy and eager to get on the road. It was wonderful to see that again.

She was always wonderful with Bayley, only once putting him in his place (and he certainly needed it on that occasion). He’s not much on other dogs, but with Cousin Artemis, he was pretty content.

She spent quite some time in northern Michigan near Traverse City with her mom, Linda. Galloping through the forests and swimming and canoeing and sailing, she always had a spectacular time up there and loved Michigan.

I’ll never forget the joyful abandon she displayed when jumping into water. My fondest memories of her are when she jumped full-tilt into Clear Creek Lake near Duncan while we were sailing, while fetching sticks. And the shower of water that cascaded off of her as she shook herself after getting out invariably doused everyone and everything within miles. Those were grand days.

But now, after a very full and long life of giving everyone around her such joy and happiness, she’s finally at rest, no longer in pain, having been the bestest black lab ever.

And we send warm hugs and sympathy to her dad, Don, and to Jean and to Linda, who will all miss her terribly.

Thank you, Artemis. We’ll fill the holes in our hearts with the wonderful memories you gave us. Sleep well, my girlfriend.