Monday, December 07, 2009

Confucius Say

I realize that I still owe you pictures. I should really have more from Halloween up and now even some from Beth's Second Annual Cookie Baking Party. But, alas, I still don't have my own working camera (Dear Santa) and am too lazy to upload the ones I stole from Carolyn's.

Meanwhile, because I don't have said working camera (Hi Santa!), and I don't have a macro setting on my phone camera, you'll have to forgive the quality of the picture below.

This was hilariousness enough that I laughed out loud by myself at home, so I thought it only right that I share.


River has somehow been getting into trouble even with her muzzle on. She keeps getting into my garbage can by my desk and shredding the junk mail/papers that end up in there. She's done this several times now, so today when I went to work, I put it on top of my desk. Problem solved.

So I thought.

Today when I came home, I let both dogs out and then noticed once again there was some stuff ripped up in the living room. It turned out to be the box that my cell phone came in. Luckily, only the box was ripped up and the receipts that I kept inside were okay, still intact on the floor.

Then I found a small plastic wrapper and realized it must have been from a fortune cookie. Two had been on the coffee table from the night before when Carolyn and I had ordered food. Guess neither of us managed to clean them off the table, or eat them. So, River must have pulled them off the table and opened them up. Not sure who actually ate them.

Anyway, my fortune cookie suspicions were correct, because after I picked up the plastic wrapper, I found this (click for larger):

"You will have a party."

Oh, how right you are.

I laughed out loud. Good one, River. Well played.

No idea where the other plastic wrapper/cookie/fortune is. I can only imagine what that one said. Probably something like, "Destroy all evidence or you will get caught."

Sigh. I don't know what to do with this dog. The muzzle was such a good solution for so many months. I'm out of options, I think. I'm pretty sure I need to clear out some more of the bottom shelves and stuff she might be able to get to. I don't remember where my phone box was, so I'm not sure where she got it from.

Good times. I know who is on Santa's naughty list!

End Blog.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Up Halloween

I promise I'll put up more pictures later, but here is the crew from Pixar's Up at the Halloween party. I even made Carl's house and have it hanging from the balloons in this picture. Remy went as Dug, even though she didn't quite make the picture. We had a lot going on...

If you can't tell (because my costume is SO good), I'm the old man, Carl Fredricksen. Carolyn is Russell, the Wilderness explorer (I made a couple parts of her costume) and Brenda is the bird, Kevin.

(click picture to enlarge)

I'm very proud. I walked out of this movie when I watched it in June and said, "I'm going to be that old man for Halloween!" I'm glad that I have friends who supported me. And that I was able to sneak Remy into a 'no dogs allowed' house because she was vitally important to the costume. She had a great time and was probably more social than I was!

Sadly, not many of the people at this party had actually seen the movie. Which was just sad. It's Pixar! You'll love it! So, if you haven't seen it, go BUY it on November 10th when it comes to DVD and watch it. Then, retroactively love our costumes.

As always, another great Halloween party.

I wish my digital camera was working. I have to get pictures from others. I'm going to have to get a new one, I suppose.

End Blog.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

River v. Cane, Battle for the Ball

I'm going to be Carl Fredricksen the 78 year old man from Pixar's Up for Halloween. Carolyn is going to be the 8 year old Wilderness Explorer, Russell, Remy will be Dug the talking dog, and Brenda will be Kevin, the exotic bird/snipe.

I tried on my costume tonight. It's going to be perfect. Totally worth every penny and hour I spent working on all of it. There will be pictures, I promise.

Meanwhile, I got my quad-footed cane and put tennis balls on the feet. River really wanted those tennis balls. I took some video for your viewing pleasure. (Don't mind Juno on the TV in the background.)

She's so adorable.

End Blog.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

No Idea What She's in For

River's been a crazy puppy, but now that she's getting a wee bit older, she is more calm... if infrequently. But now, lucky River, she has graduated to being tortured, just like Remy.

She's so smart looking, no?

End Blog.

Too Long Since I've Tortured Remy

Hey, look! Brenda found a ridiculous hat. And what do we do in the Blackwell household when we find a ridiculous hat? That's right, we put it on Remy!


End Blog.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Miss You, Too

It's been a long time. I know. I'm lazy and right now I'm sick.

I blame Twitter.

Just wanted to let you know.

Oh, yeah, and I bought an Xbox 360. Also, new television is coming back. So... good luck, blog. You have much to compete with.

I just saw Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs in 3D. It's probably something you should do, immediately.


End Blog.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Toby's Not a Grumpy Old Man

Belinda is horribly mistaken about her dog, Toby. He's not a grumpy old man. He needs a puppy in his life. Look at how much fun they are having!

It's not really that bad having four dogs in the house. I wouldn't mind it if I became the crazy old dog lady. It's actually pretty entertaining.

Although, someone told me that over the course of their lifetime dogs cost, on average, $36,000. Somehow I think Remy costs way less than that and River will cost way more.

I found a muzzle for River. We're working together to make sure that she thinks the muzzle is the best thing in the entire world and means that she's getting treats. Not sure how it's all going to pan out and I still have some reservations about keeping her in it all day, however I can't think of a better solution. I know that if I spend $150 on a new plastic-type kennel, she'll undoubtedly be able to get out of that one, too. (Her sister, Scout can get out of hers like that.) And she will probably hurt her nose doing so.

So, we'll see how this works.

She didn't eat anything in the house on Friday. Not that it's improvement, but... a mini miracle. Maybe my two doggy guests kept her entertained. I'm beginning to think it's not so much separation anxiety but boredom.

We shall see... the thrills continue.

I just realized that if you're not following my pictures on Twitter, you likely didn't see what she did on Wednesday. So, I shall leave you with this, my moment of anti-zen.

Her toys were under the couch and I think she tried to go through it since she couldn't reach them. She's too smart for me. I put pillows under the couch so nothing else can get under there... and so it continues.

End Blog.

PS, the fenced in yard is fabulous! I love it so much. Thanks for all your hard work Mom and Dad.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Our Own Amusement

There is a room in the lab called the wet lab where crime scene techs package all their stuff. In this room, there is a vault where they keep things until they're logged into property. This vault has a door with a little window.

On the door there was a sign that stated “Loaded Gun on Shelf!!!” (Yes, 3 exclamation points)

So, I screamed the note out loud to Belinda, who was in the wet lab with me, with enthusiasm, like it was intended to be read. Then, being naturally curious, I looked in the window to the vault. On the shelf in the lab there was another note, “Loaded gun” and on that shelf there was a box (presumably containing said gun, which, by the way, I’ve inferred was loaded) and written on that box was “loaded”.

I told Belinda I wanted to go outside of the wet lab to put up a sign, “Loaded Gun on Shelf in Vault!!!!”

To which she countered that she wanted to go outside of the building and make a note, “Loaded Gun on Shelf in Vault in Wet Lab!!!!!”

We just found it ridiculous how many times it said there was a loaded gun, as if the gun being loaded is somehow remarkably dangerous if it’s sitting on a shelf. Like they just go off by themselves or they’re extremely flammable or volatile or something. Plus, it was the end of the day and I was with Belinda and we make each other laugh. And I may have been dancing around and making wild hand gestures about the loaded gun on the shelf in the vault in the wet lab.

I texted Belinda like 3 or 4 times last night telling her there was a loaded gun on the shelf in vault in the wet lab. It was hilarious.

And thus, it will always make me laugh.

Good story.

End Blog.

Monday, July 27, 2009


I read a report today at work that stated something like the following: Upon arrival at the scene the dead body was breathing.



Just thought I should share. That is all.

End Blog.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Rape Culture

I'm sure you've heard about the allegations regarding Ben Roethlisberger and how he raped an employee at Harrah's in Lake Tahoe. I don't know how much you're aware of, or what is going on in the media/blogosphere.

Some take it seriously, some do not, some call her a gold digger. Some say the allegations can't be true because there was no criminal report and it's a year later.

Are you serious?

I deal with this EVERY DAY. And a reason why rape is such a big deal is because of media events like THIS and how poorly they are ALWAYS handled. Remember Kobe Byrant? Anyone know how that ended? All charges were dropped because the woman refused to testify. I don't blame her, either. Do you know how scary that would be? Do you even have any idea how horrible the whole process is? It might even be more emotionally scarring than the assault.

And with this case, everyone told her not to report. That she was lucky to have had sex with this man; he was a legend! Any girl would be lucky to be in her place!

It makes me sick to know that we could have done something for this woman, if only she had come forward. It doesn't matter if your rapist is famous, it's STILL RAPE. She didn't just have sex with him and regret it. She didn't just have sex with him when she didn't want to. That's called rape. She didn't have sex with Ben Roethlisberger, she was raped by him. THERE IS A DIFFERENCE.

This would have been the *perfect* case for anonymous reporting. We're working on it. I promise. You can get a sexual assault exam at the hospital and not report to the police. Do not let anyone talk you out of it. Get it done - even if you're not sure if you're going to prosecute or report to the police. If you decide to a year later, at least the evidence has been collected. Hell, it'll probably take us another year to work it and get a DNA profile if there's anything probative in the kit anyway.

There is help out there. And there are advocates and counseling to get you through it. This woman was hospitalized for depression after the event because she had absolutely no support system.

Our culture, the media, society's views - they're wrong. It's up to all of us to change them.

Here's a really great story regarding rape culture.

If you don't know what it is, read this.

Often times I am reminded how largely ignorant the general populations is. I wonder how it could be that I am brighter than SO MANY people. I don't think of myself that way - until something like this comes along. Then I feel pretty arrogant... but I think, appropriately so.

The media cares about celebrities. About Michael Jackson's death. It's all we report on. I haven't seen one story representing this woman appropriately.

Sure, I believe in innocent until proven guilty. But that doesn't mean that you don't believe the victim's statements. Leave it to the courts to decide - but don't discredit her. It took a lot of courage to come forward.

Sorry, I'm too angry/excitable about this topic... Ending rant. (Totally check that link if you haven't.)

End Blog.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Rage Against the Cage

After the second failed suicide attempt, I was convinced that it was best for River if I brought her kennel back out and fixed it up so that she couldn't escape. Sure, they said, she would try to escape and probably scrape up her nose again, but when she discovers that she can't get out, she will stop. So, I bought some hardware and zip ties and made the cage impossible for River to get out of. And I put her in it today.

This is that I came home to: (River was still in the cage, so at least my handiwork was suitable.)

She pulled the carpet that was underneath her kennel into the cage. Now, you might be wondering how, exactly she managed to get to the carpet...

She broke the plastic bottom liner thing. And then tore it up into some pieces.

And she BROKE the metal wire of the cage. Easy peasy! No problem getting that carpet in the cage when you're the hulk.

Here is what remains of the bottom plastic.

And here is the twisted metal cage. Seriously. She's only a 45 pound dog. I don't think that I am even strong enough to do this to the cage, even given all day.

Holy twisted metal, Batman!

And this is what happened to my carpet.

So, what I learned from this is that keeping her in the kennel is just as destructive and expensive as keeping her out of the kennel. I mean, given a couple more hours, she probably could have strangled herself on the carpet, which is, I'm sure, what her goal was in this endeavor.

I need a puppy sitter. She just gets so crazy when there are no people around and she's left 'alone'. I need a puppy psychologist for this separation anxiety.

"What? What I'd do?"

End Blog.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Dog Attempts Suicide for the Second Time

I came home from work today and found that River got into the bathroom while I was gone. There were three bags of stuff from Carolyn's apartment's medicine cabinet on the floor that hadn't quite gotten moved all the way in yet.

River decided to eat their contents, which included a razor, a bottle of acetaminophen, a toothbrush, a tube of icy hot, some cold medicine, a thermometer, and a box a q-tips. There was probably some other random stuff in there, but it wasn't recognizable by the time I got home.

I have no idea how much of the medications she ingested.

I swear this dog is trying to kill herself. I still don't think she'll make it past her first year.

She needs to be put on suicide watch. I need some people to help volunteer for her 24 hour watch. And to take away all the shoelaces...

PS - She's fine. It seems. For now. Until the next time she tries to kill herself. My next guess is strangulation.

End Blog.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Dr. Nik

I changed River's bandage tonight. It definitely takes 2 people. The cut was bloody and crusty but not actively bleeding or oozy or infected looking. She has at least 5 stitches from what I could tell, though she didn't let me look at it really well.

She was not a fan of the whole process. I think it probably hurt a bunch, but once we got her on her back with a cone on her head, she calmed down. Carolyn's head scratches and soothing sounds probably helped, because I was going, "Ooo! Ick! *sucks in breath* I'm sorry! Oh, ouchy! Stop it! I know... I know..."

But, it's changed... so, I hope we can keep it dry because this isn't something I want to have to do again if I don't have to.

Dumb dog.

End Blog.

I Do Not Like the Cone of Shame

And my paw still hurts.

Glass is stupid. Why is it so easy to break? And how can something so easy to break cut me so bad?

I hate this.

End Blog.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Suicidal Dog Slits Wrist

Tonight River took a sliding shoulder into the back door and broke the bottom pane of glass. In doing so, she managed to cut the outside of her right paw and puncture the area right near her dew claw. The laceration was clean and right to the muscle and was bleeding enough that I didn't think I'd be able to stop it myself.

I trapped her in the bathroom and tried to clean her up a bit and then taped paper towels to her paw to apply some pressure and stop the bleeding. (You know, after I stood in the bathroom for a minute staring at the medicine cabinet thinking, "I need gauze." "I don't have gauze." "I need gauze." It was a vicious cycle.)

Carolyn looked up an emergency vet and drove us there and I called Belinda to pick up Remy and take her to her house so that she didn't somehow get into the broken glass. I didn't need two cut puppies and bills to go with them. (Remy got a bath at Belinda's! How cool is that?)

When we got there, the vet cut off my make-shift bandage, looked at the wound, and bandaged her back up. Then he gave her a sedative. And it knocked her out. It also made her vomit up her dinner. She she is being really sleepy in the doctor's office.

And here is my shirt with dog blood on it. Luckily, I was in my lawn mowing getup, so I don't really care.

I think I might donate this shirt to the lab. What's not fun about dog blood on a shirt?

They gave her some stitches and bandaged her up. While she was there, I went to Lowe's to buy some stuff to fix the window. I settled on plexiglass and silicone to fix it in there, with a backup plan of plastic tarp in case I wasn't handy enough to fix it.

The bandage can't get wet and it needs to be changed if it does. If not, I have to change it every 3 days. It's starting to bother her because she keeps licking at it and limping and favoring it.

I put a latex glove over her paw to keep it dry and carried her outside because I thought she might have to pee. She turned right around a gimped herself back into the house. Then I fed her because I realized she threw up all her food earlier. She liked that, because she always likes food... and I gave her an antibiotic and some pain meds that are supposed to make her drowsy. It's kind of working, but she keeps messing with her paw.

Hopefully it will kick in soon.

Carolyn babysat her while I fixed the back door. Turns out I am awesome and managed to clean up the glass and put in a piece of plexiglass to fix it. Not sure how permanent of a fix it is, but I'm going to try to keep it for as long as I can. I'm pretty sure a new door or new glass might be really expensive.

I know, those pictures were really exciting.

Update: I took her out again and she peed and ran right back to the door. Then came in a drank a whole bowl of water. Maybe I'll set my alarm for the middle of the night to check on her.

Because this is the kind of thing she does when I'm sleeping:

(Not all the time, she just apparently didn't like Kovu's bed.)

Okay, it's late and been an eventful day. I'm going to try to get some sleep. I hope River does the same.

End Blog.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


When you watch this, just remember that I had to first realize that she was continuously sneezing, had to find my camera, and then had to actually get it on video. There must have been like 15 sneezes before this even happened.

Wow. Ever hear that thing about how if you sneeze seven times in a row it's like having an orgasm? Lucky dog.

End Blog.

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Beetles, beware! River has a new favorite thing - eating those of you that fly into the house at night. At first she would play with them for awhile before eating them, now she just sits down and has a snack... unless it's a remarkably big beetle. Then she plays with it forever, throws it at me and scares me half to death, and then only eats parts of it, forcing me to clean up after her.

Lucky for you, I got the best part of that story on video. Watch:

You'd have screamed too. It was a big, scary beetle. It doesn't matter that my six month old puppy wasn't afraid of it. That's not the point!

End Blog.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Pictures of My Children

Here is some more puppy picture spam. They get along much better than they used to, but Remy still gets a bit upset with River sometimes. And when she's not running away or digging holes in the yard, River is a pretty good puppy, if not a little hyper. Forgive the grainyness of some of these. I took them with my phone because my camera is in the car and I am too lazy to go retrieve it.

Are you really surprised?


End Blog.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

What is this Factor, Exactly?

How does anyone watch Bill O'Reilly? I mean, honestly, I can't even understand how anyone, even those who actually have similar beliefs, can manage to watch his show. I don't think that he has a normal speaking tone. He's always yelling about something ridiculous and it always seems like he is defensive, never lets his guest speak - instead they have to try to scream over him to even try to answer his questions, and then he goes about contradicting himself from one sentence to the next, so that he doesn't even make any sense.

If this is what he is like in real life, I can't imagine he has any friends. Who would keep a friend who never lets them express opinions or have a normal, casual conversation? Must he say exactly what he thinks immediately for fear that it will fall out of his head?

I can't watch him. Every single time I try to, I can feel my blood pressure spike. And I'm sure that it's not just because of his content (although I rarely, if ever agree). It's because he just seems mean. Not only that, but I don't understand why anyone would agree to appear on his show.

People in the "left" media blame O'Reilly for Dr. Tiller's murder because he kept calling him a "baby killer" on the air. I don't necessarily blame that specific action on Tiller's death. No, I'm sure that anyone who regularly watches The O'Reilly Factor would simply go insane. That's what happened to Scott Roeder. If I were him, I'd use that as my defense in court and to prove it, I'd have the jury watch a few hours of that show.

I'm sure they'll let him go under the condition that he never has access to a television again.

Which leads me to a really great segue. Why in the world is FoxNews or MSNBC on televisions in public places like the dentist office or the airport? Everyone knows that we don't get unbiased news anymore. And since this country feels so divided, why would these be the things piped into waiting areas filled with people that have different views on life?

Wouldn't it be nicer to just put on the discovery channel or the food network? We don't need this sort of stress in our lives. (Okay, for truths, I would really like a "fair and balanced" news station. Remind me again why we don't have one.)

It's amazing that O'Reilly hasn't keeled over from a heart attack on the air yet. I thought about embedding a clip of his show to prove my point, but I can't even bring myself to spread his rhetoric. I'm sure you understand what I'm talking about without it.

End Blog.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

How Can They Be Cuter in Their Sleep?

I love it when they sleep. And get along. Right next to each other.

Those are some good dogs. Wouldn't it be nice if I trusted River enough to just go to bed right now?

End Blog.

Thankfully, She Loves Me Anyway

Remember when Remy got dressed up in Royals gear? Or when she was put in a hat? (I know, you're asking, "Which time?" right now.) It seems that many of the times the shenanigans of torturing Remy occur, Brenda is around. This past weekend was no exception. This time we decided that Remy should join in on the mustache fun.

She was not pleased... can you imagine? But she did get a lot of treats for her trouble. Here are the fruits of our labor! (You can see Dany in the background of some of these photos. As you can tell, she had nothing to do with this.)

I can't tell you how much I love this dog. I'm sure Caesar Milan would totally disapprove.

End Blog.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

River Has a Higher IQ Than I Do

River pulled my blanket off of the sofa and put it on her pillow. This dog is crazy smart.

And Comfy.

And Cute.

I lurves her!

End Blog.

Yard Wish List

My parents are coming to visit in late June and as part of the visit, Dad has agreed to finish off the fence around my yard. I have received a request for pictures of what needs to be done, so here is the portion that requires a fence. The left side of the house: (click on pictures to make them bigger)

There's kind of a slope. That will probably make things difficult.

And the right side of the house:

This is the side that I would like some sort of gate to go on.

The whole house with yard:
The entire lot that I'm on is 75 feet by 140 feet. I have taken no measurements. I'm guessing the fence-needing part is 30ish feet.

This area here is right along where the fence would go in along the left side. I think some bushes were cut down here before I moved, leaving a bunch of stupid root things that keep sprouting ugly foliage. I'd really like to get this out of here, but I don't have the tools to do it. Maybe if I bought a hatchet I could hack it up.

And while we're at it, here is the wish list I have to fix up all of my backyard.

You can't tell, but this is part of the fence in the back yard. It's leaning pretty badly.

Here it is from the side. I think all the vine crap that grows on it is pulling it down. I'd love to get rid of the vine stuff, but 1) it's my neighbor's fence too and I don't know what he thinks about that, and 2) the vines might be what's holding it up. It would look nicer without it, but all I really want it to make sure it's supported and isn't going to come down anytime soon.

Then there are the tree stumps. Some of them seem dead, some of them still sprout new shoots... all of them are a little too tall to mow over. I would really love to just mow my back yard without worrying about these or having my blades hit them accidentally. I so want to get them at least short enough to mow over. Gone would be better, short is all I ask.

I think this will be the easiest to get rid of. It already seems like it's rotting.

You can't really tell what's going on here. But I have issues with the mowing. I hate tree stumps.

I HATE this one. It keeps trying to regrow its tree. By the end of the year I'll probably have a huge bush out back. I cut it down last fall, but it grows really fast and I'm sure that at some point I won't be able to stay on top of it. (Hi Remy's head!)

And then there is the horrible back corner of the yard. The fence needs a little bit of work and this is where all the trees and sticks around my house go to die. I'd like to get rid of them. I'd also like to not have to cut them up in little small pieces for the garbage. Some of the things in here have really sharp thorns. I hate this pile. I wish I could just burn it all or something.

I also hate the huge tree stump by this pile.

It's got some cable thing by it that is attached to the electric/telephone/cable line pole. Probably I'm not supposed to touch it. I really want it out of there.

And finally, last but not least, this damn clothes line pole. I only have one, so I can't even have a real clothes line! (Not that I want one.)

I hate this whole area of my yard. Blerg.

So, that's all the things I'd like to do outside. They probably won't all be tackled, but that is the dream.

Dad, please use this as a guide on what you need to bring with you. =)

End Blog.