Thursday, September 10, 2009

big fish (and blog mascots).

Currently Listening To: Maybe Not by Cat Power
Got Caught Up on How I Met Your Mother Last Night: Stella isn't the mother is she?! It was the episode where Stella tapped his shoulder while he was carrying the yellow umbrella. I'm so confused. We aren't watching last season in order ... just when we catch an episode. :-/

Loved reading your comments on the last post! We should talk about Jane Austen every week. Also, I wish we could all get together and watch Pride and Prejudice (... and every male reader clicked off this page at that sentence ;). I shall not use this forum to confess to you I like the movies more than the book. It's sacrilege to be a writer and admit to liking any movie more than a book. And the book is still superior. I still want a Jane Austen action figure. I just liked the movie version of P&P better than the book. We can still be friends, right?

It has taken awhile for me to write this blog. From start to finish these are the events that transpired:

- I drove. A lot.
- I dragged two orange suitcases into the house. They were not nearly as heavy as my suitcases typically are.
- As soon as I put the suitcases down, I turned and tripped over a shoe.
- I smashed my finger in the closet, which I grabbed in effort not to hit the ground after I tripped over the shoe. That was yesterday. My fingertip is still numb.
- I sprayed an entire bottle of Diet Dr. Pepper all over the kitchen. Not for kicks. It just exploded upon opening. As it sprayed, I thought to myself, "if a bottle of carbonated delight can gain that kind of momentum whilst just sitting there, in the bottle, doing nothing ... imagine what it does to a person's stomach lining." I've drank at least three since then.
- I listened to an audiobook that was stinking amazing, but I'll wait until next week to tell you about it.

- I caught a fish.

Let me work up to the fish story. Every true fisherman (fisherwoman?) does.

I spent the weekend in Georgia, with my sister and her family. I love them so much and leaving always makes me sad. Visiting them is a double dose of awesome because 1.) I love them and 1.) they live on a gorgeous farm. The farm is like a visual sedative. I feel chill as soon as I pull in the driveway. This is a pic I took one morning:

Inspiring, no? :) There are cows, little furry chickens, peacocks, and a big (sweet) white dog named Speck. And some really bizarre looking creatures called "guineas". I'll tell you about them around Thanksgiving, when I can show you a picture.

I'm not a farm person by nature. I like living near a city. I don't like the traffic, but I like having so much to see and do right in front of me. Seeing city lights at night still makes me shiver :) But the farm is good for me. And the best part of the farm is, of course, the people who live there. My niece just turned twelve and she is so much prettier, smarter, and cooler than I was at any point during middle school. Also, she's hilarious. My nephew is five. He is the most imaginative kid I've ever been around. Also the loudest. I'm nuts about them both.

When I walked in the door, they gave me a present. And this present was especially scream worthy because ... they gave me my own pair of farm boots! And the farm boots are pink plaid! I'm wild over them. I have to get a bigger size (tucking your jeans into farm boots is a necessity), but when I get them back, I'll show you.*

The weekend was short but so fun. We swam. We pretended to be pirates. We all sat on the couch together, ate Oreos, and watched The Iron Giant. That movie makes me cry every time.

And ... I caught my first fish! I didn't take it off the hook myself. I always think I'm brave enough to do that (my sister takes hers off. She's so awesome and tough), but then I start to try and have horrible flashbacks of fish dissections in high school. Fish don't even blink, they just stare at you. Like they know. Still, I caught the sucker with a really cool looking pole. It wasn't a fishing rod. It was a fishing pole. It looked more like the apparatus used for pole-vaulting than something used to catch a monster of the deep. The funniest part was trying to get the fish out. There's no reel, so you just have to swing the pole out of the water like a wrecking ball and hope nobody gets fish-slapped in the face. It's a dangerous job. My fish was huge, massive ... like I didn't know fish that big lived in ponds down in Georgia. In fact, it might have been a Kraken. It took all of us pulling, yanking, dragging that bad boy out of the pond.** We threw it back (we always do).

Something else monumental happened this week that I've been really excited to tell you about.

I got a dog.

If you know me, your reaction to that sentence might be, "I didn't know you were a dog person ...", that's understandable. I didn't either.

For several years, I had a super sweet cat named Hawthorne. He was extremely furry and mostly sat around and slept. He was so cute and funny. My whole family loved him. Best, funniest pet ever. Then one day Hawthorne disappeared. I put flyers in mailboxes. I called everybody on my street. I cried for days (I know it's just an animal ... but I tend to get attached). It wasn't just that my cat disappeared - that whole year was kinda sucky. My granny got really sick, and passed away. There was a job I wanted and didn't get. Lots of personal stuff that went crashBOOM. And then my cat disappeared. I was like a walking country music song. I was in a twirpy jaded funk and decided I never ever wanted another pet.

Ironically, Hawthorne was a cat I didn't want either. He came after my other cat, Bandit, whom I had all through high school, died. Hawthorne just showed up on the front porch, all cute and little and furry. I tried to pay no attention to the cat, but little furry animals have a way of winning me over.

So fast forward to the past month. My friend Allison (Also a fellow blog reader***) is responsible. Allison's super nice, super classy sister-in-law is having a baby. So she wanted to find a new home for her terrier, Biscuit. Biscuit is a sweetie. Her owners put a load of time and effort into taking care of her. And now I get to take care of her! :) I'm really excited. Learning to doggify my life is fun so far. It's nice having something new to love :) I'm really excited for you to "meet" her! But I'll warn you, she is super furry and super adorable. Swampmates, meet our new mascot, Biscuit!

Look at those little furry paws! Doesn't her face look a little bit like a muppet face? I think it does. Such a cutie. Here are some reasons Biscuit is made of win:

1.) She is adorable and furry with a muppet face!

2.) Sometimes when I'm working, or ... watching Regis and Kelly, I hear the tap tap tap tap tap of her feet on the floor. Then she's propped at the edge of the chair, holding her yellow tennis ball:

As if to say: Hello there, my tiny new owner. We both know you are not working, so I have a more pleasant alternative. Why don't we play? I know the effect my cute face has on you. I know you think my small furry paws are adorable. Watch me use my furry paws to push this tennis ball toward you ... see ... you know you want to play with me.

Don't let appearances fool you. The tennis ball looks the size of her head but she can cram the whole thing in her mouth.

3.) She's funny. A commercial for McDonald's came on, in which the announcer talked about homemade "biscuits". She stopped everything and stared at the TV in eager anticipation. She loves seeing animals on TV too. Loves prancing through the backyard like a little reindeer. Loves tugging on her toys (and then ripping them to shreds). Loves to cuddle when she's sleepy.

So Biscuit is the dog that is making me a dog person. It's not that I disliked dogs before, I was just kind of neutral on them. I grew up on a street where people bought massive dogs that only barked and growled. Some dogs are really cool and fun though. Like Biscuit. She's currently laying at the foot of my bed, snoozing, dreaming of squirrels. You would really like her :)

Do you guys have any pets? Any cute pet stories to share? Also, a question: do you think I should cowboy up and learn to pull the fish off the hook? Or does pulling the fish off tend to gross you out too?

* Funny because the purpose of farm boots is to wear them so you don't step in cow poop, etc. I never get anywhere close to cow poop, etc. The farm boots are more symbolic for me. A pilot gets his wings. So do angels if Jimmy Stewart rings a bell at Christmastime. Sorority girls get letters. I have my farm boots.
** It was small, about the size of my hand. I just wanted to tell the story the way any good fisherwoman should.
*** Allison is also married to Nelson. They both look like J. Crew models. And yet they're both really really nice. And talented. It's just annoying ;)


  1. Awww, Biscuit is sooo cute!! I love her! She has such a cute little face! I have four cats and a dog, but I'm totally a cat person. My dog is really old and kind of smelly, but she's really sweet and I feel bad for neglecting to pet her. Then when I pet her, I remember why I didn't want to pet her when I have to wash my hands 5 times to get rid of doggy smell! But she is an outside dog and loves to roll in dirt and other ick, so I understand why she smells. My best friend has a dog that I love, though, even though I'm usually a fan of cats. Her dog is a toy poodle named Chip. Chip is kind of catlike because he's little and cuddly (he sleeps on her bed and curls up next to her at night). Anyway, one time I was spending the night at her house and sleeping on a cot next to her bed, and I woke up to discover that Chip had fallen off her bed onto my cot. Well, correction - he had fallen onto my HEAD. Needless to say, I wasn't ecstatic. I was half-asleep, though, so I just said, "Chip! Get off my head!" and put him back on my friend's bed. Oh well, it made a good story...

    I am very proud of you for catching the fish! I love fishing (although I use a rod with a reel) and I usually catch some, but I let my dad, brother, or uncle (we all go together) get the fish off the hook. I love to eat fresh fish, although pulling out the bones is annoying, but I am usually not brave enough to pull off the fish. I'm afraid they will stick me with those little spiny fins! However, I am occasionally brave enough to bait my own hook with worms!

  2. I would have (drank? drunk? drunken? drinked?) consumed the Dr. Pepper as well. I was the person who went out and bought a Happy Meal after watching "SuperSize Me."

    My dog Rusty is a miniature long-haired dachshund. He thinks he's either a person or a cat. He doesn't dig, he doesn't bark unless he needs something and we're ignoring him, he's scared of everyone, he hides in closets and under toilets when people come to visit, and his love language is licking people to death. He hates car rides. He actually reminds me a lot of Paul Anka on Gilmore Girls. He sleeps with my parents, which means that when they're out of town, I get to sleep in their bed so he doesn't freak out. This often results in my waking up at 2 in the morning to Rusty licking my face until he's lying across my pillow with me rubbing his tummy. He's super soft, ridiculously cute, and spoiled rotten. And he has the same color hair as me.

    Being a dog person is awesome. Biscuit is going to win you over in no time, believe me.

  3. When you said... "Did you see my dog"... I thought, "She's joking. Can't wait to see what the joke. Natalie doesn't like dogs." But, with a cute muppet face like that, it's easy to see how you were won over!

    Was the fishing pole made out of a cane?! We used to go cane fishing... I'd love to see you swinging a fish out of the pond and slapping it around... hahaha

  4. I love that you got a pair of farm boots (and such pretty ones!). It made me laugh because my family has a farm, and I have a pair of tall farm boots (mine are just navy blue, though) that I slip them on anytime I have to go outside for anything. I make quite a fashion statement sometimes in my patched up capris and floppy rubber boots.
    Biscuit is really cute, and I'm not much of a dog person, either. I have a huge cat named Jack. He weighs 18 pounds and he's orange and white like a dreamsicle. =) When he was a kitten, he was a stray, and he rode to town for almost 16 miles there and back under my aunt's car. Then my grandma adopted him, and when she died, we brought him here to live with us. He's a big baby who likes to sit up on his hind feet with his front paws on the window sill and look outside.
    I used to be the only girl who went on our church camping trip, and almost every year I caught more fish than the boys. =) I even took them off myself, althrough I'd probably be too grossed out to do it now.

  5. Rachael, Chip sounds too cute! (Though I would freak out of anything fell on top of my head while I was sleeping ... :). I love little bitty furball dogs. Biscuit isn't smelly, which is one reason I'm psyched about having her. Usually I think dogs stink a load, but I don't smell Biscuit after I pet her. I think it is seriously brave that you bait your own hook! We used bread to bait, and I didn't even do that. I'm such a weenie. :)

    Ashley, Rusty is adorable! And also, woot for Paul Anka (or woof, perhaps. Zing!) I squeeled over Rusty's facebook pic! Well ... your facebook pic with Rusty in it. He doesn't have a facebook, I guess. (But if he does, tell him to friend me.)

    J, the fishing pole did look like a cane! It came in a bag and probably wasn't made of cane ... b/c the different pieces twisted together. But I bet it's the same thing you used. The fish come flying out of the water with those things. I felt like the Sweedish Chef.

    Kristin, I bet you rock your farm boots! :) I've worn my sister's boots a few times, and they sound like yours (they went up to my knees). I would go nuts for Jack. Hawthorne was massive. I don't remember how much he weighed, but I bet it was as much as my dog currently weighs. Big fat cats make me laugh :) I'm going to try to live up to your example and take the fish off the hook someday. It's just so much easier said than done ...

  6. Hello Biscuit! What a cutie! Biscuit looks like a perfect fit for you! :) Jill & I are getting caught up on How I Met Your Mother too! We're watching season three episodes right now and will forever be behind because CBS doesn't have season four online and the season four dvd doesn't come out until after the new season starts! Foiled! I'm totally jealous of your farm boots! So cute! :) Glad you got to see your sister and her family this weekend! Miss ya lady!

  7. I've wanted a Golden Retriever my entire life...hmmm...maybe SOMEDAY...

    Three years ago, though, a big black German shepherd mix showed up on our driveway one summer Sunday morning...and he wouldn't leave. And he was really old and skinny and stinky and had a bad hip problem, but he was sweet as could be. We put up posters, called vets, everything, to no avail. So, my younger sisters named him Gus (I hated the name at first and insisted he looked like a Robert...don't ask me why--so his full name became Robert Augustine) :) We had Gus a little over a year before he died. It was nothing short of tragedy for my sisters, but he *was* super old and in hip pain and he was ready to go. At any rate, we gave him a happy year of love that he wouldn't have had otherwise.

    Oh...and I have to mention that I am a BIG rabbit person. We're on our third bunny right now. She is a pitch-black Rex rabbit (they are known as the original Velveteen Bunny because they are softer-than-down-soft) and her name is Emma Jo. But before her, we had an orange Rex named Sophie Rose, whom we turned into a pelt upon her death. I'm dad took her to a taxidermist and had her little pelt made for us (ears, eyeholes and all)! Sometimes we drape her over the back of the recliner and give our guests a good shock. :) :) :) People think it's hilarious though!

  8. First of all, Biscuit is SUCH a cute dog! And a great dog name! My dog's name is Andi, short for Andrea. I named her when I was in ninth grade, and I still somewhat regret the name because just saying "Andi" sounds like a boy dog. I guess since my name is Samantha but people call me Sam I thought my dog should have a similar name type? Anyway, she is a Jack Russell and still lives with my parents since I can't have a pet at college. When I come home, though, she goes crazy and gets really excited, jumping all over me then burying her face in my lap. When I leave, she gives me a really sad look, then stands on her hind legs against the window at the door, moves the curtain aside with her paw, and watches me pull out of the driveway.

    And yes. Learn to take your own fish off. It's personally one of my favorite things to - it completes the experience :)

  9. Poohbonnet, I love that you're a bunny person! That is super sweet. My best friend had a bunny when she was in college. It's name was Harriet. I think it's name was Harry, then they realized it was a she-bunny and changed the name to Harriet :) I think it used a litterbox. I didn't realize bunnies did that! But they are adorable and floppy looking. I love their ears. As far as the Sophie Rose pelt ... I think I would have bawled. Or screamed. ;) But I'm always up for finding new ways to freak out guests. I watched a TV show about decorating where the guy had a rug made of the pet goat he had as a kid.

    Samantha, I'm learning terriers are way excitable. Biscuit is really sweet and she sleeps a lot too but when she plays she is hardcore. And when somebody comes in the door, she's all dancy/jumpy/happy :) It makes me sad to leave too. Because she gives me this look like I'm the world's worst pet owner. I'll try to take off my own fish. I really do want to. My brother won't take his off either, and I'm determined to show him up.

  10. Wait a minute...don't i get a say in this J crew business??? You are kind even though you are oh so very wrong.
    You have no idea how happy I am that Biscuit is with you! She is such a sweet dog and needed a good home with lots of attention! Just don't ever bring her around our house because Addy would most likely freak and try to kill her (it's a female terrier dominance thing, fyi) we found out the hard way...

  11. Ok, I already commented once, but the story about the rabbit pelt and freaking out guests made me think of a good story:

    When my mom was a teenager, she had a cat named Tuffy. He was a really large fluffy cat who liked to sit and look out the window. One day some ministers came to my visit my grandmother (she was not a regular church attender, but she was a member so they came to see her sometimes) and they were visiting in the living room. Tuffy was laying on the back of the couch, staring out of the window. One of the ministers asked my grandmother, "Is that cat stuffed?" and she said sarcastically, "Oh, he's stuffed, all right." Later on, Tuffy got up and jumped down from the couch, leaving the ministers staring in shock. They really thought the cat was stuffed!

  12. Biscuit looks adorable! The fact that you weren't necessarily a dog-person and became one gives me hope. I'm not one either but, oh, I keep hoping!
    Congrats on catching your first fish. Did you document the moment photographically? Because I don't know why, but people never believe you when you say you did something like catch a fish...or maybe that's just me that no-one believes.
    Have a good weekend!

  13. BTW, Stella isn't the mother. At the end of episode 5 of season 4 where she leaves him at the altar for her ex, they show two blonde kids instead of the two brunette ones they normally show and he says "And that's how I met your mother. Just kidding." I'm having a hard time explaining it (even though it's not that complicated), but I can't find a clip of it online for some reason. But it's there, I promise. Stella sticks with her ex. The latest piece of info we've got is that when Ted starts teaching architecture at a university, the mother is in his first class.

  14. AP, thanks for the heads up on the terrier thing! Yikes! I'm kind of nervous about taking her walking anywhere because she's so little. I'm afraid some big dufus dog will attack. And I'm thinking she might have a tendency to provoke those things ... :) I need to chat with you sometime and get the 411 on how to be a good dog owner.

    Rachael, so funny! I would love to see the look on the faces of those men! :)

    Sarah, I didn't document it. Wish I would have though. Not just so people will believe me but so I could have my fish-slapping experience around to make me laugh ;)

    Ashley, thank you for the heads up! I saw where she left him at the altar. After that I did NOT want her to be the mom. Watching the latest season out of order is really throwing me off!

  15. Sorry I'm so late in commenting! Biscuit is SO cute! Glad to hear you are becoming a dog person--you'll never go back.

    My husband and I are definitely dog people. We've rescued two puppies in the last year and a half: George and Izzy (no, we are not Grey's Anatomy fans). George was on doggie death row, and Izzy was displaced by Hurricane Ike. I would adopt more, but we just don't have the room. :)

    They provide hours of entertainment and unconditional love. Plus they bring the cuteness factor of the house way up.

    So welcome to the wonderful world of dog care! At least the potty training part is over... :)

  16. Thank you, Carra! I am such a rookie on being a dog person. Biscuit ate some of the squeaker in her toy this morning and I freaked out. My mom assures me it's all ok :) Biscuit isn't destructive at all but she chews her toys to pieces. And she likes to chew on grass and spit it out ... she's so random and funny. I LOVE that you adopted your pets. All my former pets were strays that showed up at my house. I had looked into adopting a dog or cat befor B. came along. I bet your puppies are adorable!