Friday, June 27, 2008

The Weekend!

So....Tyson still lives. When it came right down to it, the boy just couldn't do it. We got the name of another behaviorist, and the boy will see if this guy has any new tricks up his sleeve that we can try with Tyson.

Thanks so much for all of your suggestions and commiserations. Interestingly, the vet that we go to doesn't much like to prescribe medication for behavioral issues (and this is very in line with our point of view as well) but he seemed to like the suggestion given by the vet tech for a medicine that can be administered to Tyson before any scheduled changes to the normal routine. (Like, say, a dinner date, or weekend at the parent's house...) I saw this suggestion from commenters and I was impressed. I had never even considered such an idea. That's why I'm glad we had people who weren't so close to the situation who could think outside the box, per se.

I also saw suggestions to re-home Tyson, and if you don't know Tyson personally, I can completely understand that this would be the first thought to pop into your head. I am a strong proponent of rehoming your animal before giving them up to a shelter or taking the "easy" way out. However, I also got this suggestion from the behaviorist that we used to work with, and I found it completely irresponsible. She knows Tyson and his issues intimately.

Tyson has severe separation anxiety and the boy is his one and only (to put it lightly.) It's not as though the boy and I are novices with pit bulls, or with dealing with Tyson's issues. I just can't imagine how guilty I would feel dropping this dog and all of his issues on someone new, even if they say they're ready to handle it - it will be SO MUCH worse in the beginning because Tyson will not only be in an entirely new situation, but he will also not be with the boy. I thought about this one for a long long time, and the list of criteria for a potential new owner for Tyson would have to be:

Young (Tyson is STRONG and needs exercise)
Stay at home (or work from home)
Experience with pit bulls
Willing to exercise Tyson regularly (or have a lot of land to let him roam on walks)
Willing to take on the expense of a dog who may require medication his entire life
Have no other dogs (unless very very submissive.)
Have no cats

Most people who have the experience to work with Tyson are regulars in rescue or animal behavior. Most of them don't only have one animal.... (I guess I'm a case in point...) I just feel like the boy really IS Tyson's last chance.

(Tyson was actually slated to be put down by the rescue I work for because he couldn't be fostered (due to the crating/dominance issue) but I opened my big mouth and said, "Oh! My boyfriend lives in a house and he could probably foster him!" So basically, this is all my fault. I think that what got to me back then was the fact that even though Tyson was big, goofy, and couldn't be crated, his tail was bleeding from the tip when we got him. Why? Because even though he had been in a crate at the shelter and when he was being transported to us, his damn tail never stopped wagging, and he banged it up so much it was bleeding. I need to get over this soft-hearted thing. It only gets me into trouble.)

Given that difficult and traumatic decision yesterday and the fact that I've been trying to be there for the boy as much as possible, I am SO ready for the weekend. Not that it will be relaxing. My parents are coming into town, and my dad almost made me cry when he offered to help me clean out my spider and large insect (seriously - you have no idea. I originally thought this one brown thing was a mouse...nope - large brown bug. I almost fainted. The only thing that kept me holding on to consciousness was the fact that if I fainted, I would be on the ground where all the spiders and insects were living. ewwwww) infested garage so that I can park my car in it. Apparently the garage hasn't been used for years. Stupid Curvy. (My dad didn't even laugh when I told him I didn't know whether or not the electricity in the garage worked because the socket for the lighbulb was well inside the garage and beyond where the sunlight entered when I opened the door, so there was no way in HELL I was going in there to test it out. He just understood that I can handle a lot, but bugs just aren't my forte... He said we'll figure it out when he gets here (which I translate to mean that he'll handle it and I'll help as much as I can...) Why oh why can't I meet a guy like my dad??) I set off a bug bomb last night, but I'm afraid to open the door and see what happened. The boy asked me what I was afraid of. Well, basically, I'm (irrationally, I know) afraid that the bug bomb had no effect, and that it just made the spiders and large unidentified insects if I open the door, well, they'll attack me.

Shut it. You all have phobias too.

So, facing the prospect of large bugs, and certain lawn care (my dad is bringing me an edger. I'm ashamed to say that I didn't know what that was when he originally mentioned it. I planned to mow. And now apparently I have to edge. Great. Just one more thing to keep in the garage.) this weekend doesn't seem all that appealing, though it will be fabulous to see my folks. Today started off quietly, and I was just pushing through a Friday at work, when I heard this song on the radio:

It makes me so happy! I swear I've had it on repeat for the last hour. Added to that, a friend sent me a random email basically saying that they were proud of me for the cohabitation hiatus, and he knows how difficult that must have been for me, but I did the right thing.

That, my friends, is why I ALWAYS give compliments when I think of them. You never know when a little word of kindness that crosses your mind and is expressed can make someone else's day.

So with Tyson alive and kicking, and facing certain trauma from the garage this weekend, I'm in a remarkably good mood! I'm even happy enough to drop $139.99 on this window a/c unit and then try to install it myself. Wish me luck! (I'm not even going to read the email response from the old behaviorist after I called her suggestion irresponsible. It will just mess up my chi. :-)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Tough Times

An issue has arisen in the house of boy.

A friend of his got married this past weekend, and he was a groomsman in the wedding. This meant he was out late on Friday night with the rehearsal dinner/bachelor party and then gone most of the day Saturday for the wedding.

This, of course, left his dog alone for quite a while in a new place.

The boy had been making headway in the crate training. After all, he didn't want the carpet in the new place to end up like it did in the last place. For short periods of time, Tyson had been left in the crate with some success.

But the boy got up late after the bachelor party, walked Tyson, and then started getting ready for the wedding. This was obviously a different routine that what Tyson had become accustomed to. (during the cohabitation experiment, if the routine was altered, Tyson would begin crying and digging at the door immediately....sometimes waking Emily up at 6:00am and almost losing his life in an unpleasant manner.) When the boy was leaving for the wedding, he noticed that Tyson already seemed anxious since his normal routine had been altered. When he left, Tyson began digging at the carpet immediately.

The boy returned to the apartment, and put Tyson into his velociraptor crate. (Go on. Click on the link. Take a refresher look at the crate in all of its glory. I'll wait.)

I would show you a picture of what the crate looks like now (not to mention what Tyson looks like now) but it's seriously horrifying to see. The upper right hand corner of the door of the crate is bent back, and the top lock is broken off. (Keep in mind that this is aluminum sheet metal!) Tyson has broken off his last remaining canine tooth and broken or split four nails from digging in the metal crate. His face is disfigured from the swelling that resulted from pushing his head against the sheet metal door to bend it back in an effort to escape from the crate. There are several scratches around his face from the metal door.

He is still limping today and has a visit with the vet tomorrow to see if he needs further medical attention.

I would normally joke about the craziness of the dog...but now I feel horrible for just assuming that the dog was being stubborn and not realizing that he really is mentally unstable. He hurt himself (and badly) trying to get out of the crate that he's learned to tolerate in small doses - simply because something misfires in his head and tells him that if he's left in the crate, something horrible will happen.

So the boy faces a horrible choice. Life his life completely around the schedule of a mentally unbalanced dog, or put his buddy to rest.

Me? I'm left angry at the person who did this to Tyson. The person who did something so horrible to Tyson that it left him scarred before the boy or I ever met him. I feel guilt that there's nothing more I can do to help him.

On the one hand, Tyson is a great dog when he's not separated from the boy for long periods of time. On the other hand, no one's life is so structured that there won't be sometimes when the dogs will only get a quick walk between outings or commitments. Should the boy have to live his life knowing that he can't be away from his dog for more than eight hours at a time?

One the one hand, Tyson isn't at all aggressive. On the other hand, he can't live with another alpha dog because, while he won't start anything, if another dog tries to exert dominance on Tyson...well, Tyson doesn't let them.

On the one hand, Tyson doesn't chew or destroy anything when left to his own devices in the apartment and on a set schedule. On the other hand, any variation to the schedule and he can be destructive - to both property and himself.

On the one hand, Tyson could be medicated. On the other hand, what will that do to his quality of life? Maybe there isn't a medication that will work. The first one that we tried had no effect.

It's a very difficult situation, and it couldn't have come at a worse time. Between our cohabitation hiatus, and this situation with Tyson, the boy feels understandably depressed. I'm doing the best I can to be there, but I'm at a loss as to what to do. There is no advice I can give - the boy has to do what he feels he needs to do. There is no comfort I can give if he has to give up his buddy. I can only take him to my vet and hold his hand. (and offer to let him cuddle with Blue and Casey to see if they can do something I can't.)

Just keep him in your thoughts, okay? And any advice you can give him (or me) would be much appreciated.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Work "Appropriate" Conversation

"Man. My legs are tired, but they don't hurt. Do you know what DOES hurt? My ass. Those bike seats are NOT comfortable."

"That's not the stock seat on the bike either. The previous owner had one installed with springs in the back."

"Really? And it's super surprising to me that it's my butt that hurts. I mean, it's not like I don't have plenty of cushioning back there. I mean, I got on the bike this morning, and I really thought I would have to give up simply because my butt hurt."

"My butt hurts after riding a bike too. If I haven't ridden in a while. It goes away."

"It goes away?"

"Well, you get used to it."

"Get used to it?"

"Yeah. It's like sex."

"Okay... Wait, what?!"

"You know, if you haven't had sex in a while?"

"Um, no. I don't know.... You must be doing it wrong."

"Well, it depends on the duration."

"Um...I still think you're doing it wrong. Maybe you need a manual."

Wow, am I not smart.

So, I rode my bike to work yesterday. I was going to post a triumphant post in the morning when I was filled with a sense of accomplishment and pride....but something told me to wait.

It's a good thing I did. Around 2:30pm, the LAST thing I wanted to do was ride that damn bike home. The bike was suddenly the bane of my existance. I started scheming find a way (any way) to get home that didn't involve my leg power. Pride won out (can't let my friends be right!!) and I rode my bike home. It actually gave me MORE energy when I got home to walk the dogs... That lasted until bedtime when I crashed (HARD) and actually had the best night sleep since I moved into the new place.

Then today, it what may be the dumbest move in Emily history, I went and rode the bike to work again. For the second day in a row. When I was already exhausted yesterday after my bike riding experience. Seriously. How dumb am I?

I mean, it's definitely saving me money - I don't go out for lunch, I'm not using gas... I'm reducing my carbon footprint... But it's only 8:45am and I'm already hating that stupid bike. Any suggestions on an alternative means to get home?? (But then that pride thing kicks in... why oh why do I put myself in these situations?) Stupid bike. Stupid Emily. Stupid idea.

PS. I will post pictures of my ride to and from work soon. There are so many things I need to discuss - not the least of which are these big blue obstacles that serve no purpose, and the monster hill from hell.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Laying Down the Law

So, I won't lie. After my brush with House #1, I made an effort to check out the crime rates in any new neighborhood I was considering. Easier said that done. Eventually, I found this. (Or rather, zlionsfan found this.)

After I had moved in.

Still, that's neither here nor there. The crime rate for my neighborhood is actually much lower than the average for Marion County as a whole, so that's good, right? It wasn't until on a walk with zlionsfan on the 17th, when he mentioned the police patrols, that I actually took notice that, yes, I had actually seen quite a few police cars patrolling my neighborhood. In fact, if I thought back (and keep in mind, I've only had the dogs in the house since the 15th, so we've only been walking the neighborhood since then) I had seen at least one police car (unmarked or marked) on each walk.

I've been thinking about that ever since, and I continue to see the patrols. So, is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

Zlionsfan mentioned that police patrol neighborhoods that USED to be higher crime areas. The reason why the crime stats drop, of course, is the perceived police presence. Even though I was told over and over as a freshman in collge that I should NOT venture out into the neighborhoods surrounding Butler (the University is safe, but the neighborhoods surrounding were not guaranteed to be safe for students... blah blah blah) I never really believed it. Besides, that was um....twelve years ago. (sob) And when I was a senior, I had friends who lived in those neighborhoods and emerged reasonably unscathed. University scare tactics to protect the trust fund babies was my final verdict. And the new crime stats? I believe them. I have never felt the slightest threat whether I'm walking my dogs early morning, early evening, or late at night.

So why the police patrols? Did something recently happen to warrent the increased attention? A search of recent crime in the area yields some property offenses, some traffic issues...nothing outstanding.

So then I thought, "Is it the University?"

That seems plausible, right? An affluent private university that wants to ensure that its campus, students, faculty and reputation remain intact would surely think that increased police patrols on and around campus are a good investment, no?

This morning I was about 100 feet away from my house and groggily walking Blue and Casey, when we saw a tan chow in the neighbor's yard. I initially thought it was the neighbor's dog, until I saw that it wasn't. My worst scenario was confirmed when I saw that the chow was not leashed, was not chained, and there was no owner in sight. At that point, I woke up pretty quickly.

I decided to just continue on my walk. Out of the corner of my eye, I watched the chow head over to my front door to sniff. (New dog smell! New dog smell!!) I relaxed a bit, thinking he would just be happy staying over there, and walked a bit faster. At this point, a police car cruised slowly past.

The chow decided that it had enough of the smells, and wanted to see the real article. Damn. Casey immediately felt me tense up and began to growl. Blue, oblivious to everything, just seemed happy to meet a new potential playmate. I stood still with the dogs on either side of me and waited while the chow slowly approached. When it was on the opposite side of the street, the police cruiser (having seen the standoff in his rearview mirror) miraculously reappeared and turned on his siren for a short burst. The chow skittered away. I waved my thanks and continued walking. When we stopped at the corner, I noticed the police cruiser turning around, heading back to my house, and the police officer getting out to chase the chow away from my house entirely.

I think I fell in love with Mr. Police Officer a little bit.

I saw him again when he did a lap around Butler's campus and waved to him again. As he passed me, I noticed that he had a Butler University license plate. Mystery solved in my mind. University funding is helping with my safe existance.

But now? That doesn't really matter. This situation could have happened anywhere...even my old apartment. The difference is that there wouldn't have been anyone to chase the stray dog away at my old place. The reason is irrelevant. I'm glad the patrols are around and I'll wave every time I see one. Maybe they'll remember when I'm walking and keep an eye out for a single girl. I can't have too many friends like that, right?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

The Good:
Well, I'm in the new place. I've got some semblance of a routine going and I've actually cleared one couch off enough to sit on it. Last night, I even figured out that one of the "dead" switches turns an outlet on and off, so now I have a lamp that I can control from the front door. Oh! And the gas stove works....turns out it was just user error that kept me from making the Papa Murphy's pizza I bought for that first night.

Laney is a happy happy cat. I can't decide if it's the week long head start she had that makes her feel ownership over the place, or the subtraction of Tyson from her life...but she's a happy and outgoing and bossy cat. Last night, Blue was in my bedroom and wouldn't come when I called him. I made my voice stern as I commanded, "Blue come here now." He just looked at me nervously. I looked over to the right, and lying right by the path Blue would have to take to exit the bedroom, was Laney. It seems every time he would approach her, she would growl. I laughed. I guess we know who runs the house now.

I'm slowly clearing out the boxes that littered my house. I have a friend from college days coming to stay with me on Saturday, and the goal is for her to be able to navigate the place without having to move boxes around to get comfortable. I'm not sure I'll hit that goal, but I'll sure try. Last night was a HUGE step forward as I put together the new bathroom étagère and was actually able to get the bathroom stuff into the bathroom and up off the floor. This lead to one couch being cleared off, and actually being able to wear makeup to work today.

My boss's wife originally told me that one of the bonuses to the place I would live (that counterbalances the small space) is that I'm so close to Butler University. Even though I was already well acquainted with the campus, I thought she was just blowing me shit. Until I started walking the dogs. Seriously - WHOLE new respect for my alma mater. Now that I'm not just going from the house to class or class to class, and I'm roaming around the gardens and's gorgeous! I mean, I knew this, but I didn't KNOW this. Blue, Casey and I found a nifty little loop that takes us about 30 minutes in the morning and begins with a nice walk through Holcomb Gardens and ends with about 40 stairs back up to campus from the canal. Shady, picturesque, safe....seriously. SO worth my location. Maybe this will help me get over the sting of the ridiculous tuition I paid for four years and I'll start donating. Maybe.

The dogs are okay with sleeping in the (cool) basement. Why? Because...

The Bad:
Well, I don't have air conditioning, and I don't yet have screens in the newly painted windows. This is a HUGE BOO!!! While the mornings and evenings have actually been pleasant outside, my place has been stifling with no breeze and, um, no breeze. Ugh. Last night Blue literally melted off the couch and onto the hardwood floor. There is no other description for how he slowly slid to the floor. I would have laughed if I hadn't been trying to remain perfectly still in an effort to cool off. I took a poll, and all the animals decided that I should demand screens today or threaten bodily harm. Done.

There is no way to anticipate everything I need to get the house set up. I'm taking things one box at a time. I stumble across bathroom stuff and have no where to put it? Must purchase étagère. Too many books and nowhere to put a bookshelf? Must buy two Rubbermaid 18 gallon tubs. (and then go back for a third...) I'm currently facing random kitchen crap with nowhere to put it. (I don't have a junk drawer? Seriously? Who built a house with no junk drawer in the kitchen??) I'm thinking a rolling set of Rubbermaid drawers to put potholders/junk/spices in. That will be my purchase tonight and should help get rid of three or four more boxes. I will also get more wall anchors (the correct size this time) and screws to actually try and get pictures hung on the walls....

The Ugly:
The basement and I are still not good friends. However, I put all extra lamps down there, so we've reached an uneasy truce. Still. Large spiders that crunch when I kill them? (While sobbing "Ewwwwwww....ew, ew, ew" mind you) Not cool. I'm going to eventually need a dehumidifier, and have you SEEN how much those suckers cost? Ugh.

Oh, and while the washer and dryer are (finally) hooked up and functional, the washer will only wash with hot water. Odd you say? Why yes. Yes it is odd. You might think that perhaps the cold water that feeds the washer is not turned on. Well, I thought of that, and attempted to remedy the situation, only to find that the cold water doesn't actually have a valve to turn it on and off. Only a sad little stump that is apparently turned to the "off" position. Okay - pliers. Negative Houston. Okay - landlord. Plumber visiting tomorrow. I hope it's easily fixable because the laundry situation is becoming dire. (Oh, and here's a tip - don't try to shower after running an empty load in the washer that turns out to be full of hot water. Just a tip.)

While moving stuff into the place, and on death's doorstep, (cause of death - heatstroke) I took it upon myself to wonder why on earth the ceiling fan wasn't making much of a breeze. I mean, it was on high, and it's only about a foot and a half above my head... So Sunday night I stopped the fan to take a look at what might be wrong. Maybe it's going the wrong direction? A direction change yielded nothing. Upon closer inspection, it appears that the fan is jacked up my friends. Jacked. Up. It's like someone put the fan together from extra parts from about five other fans. The pieces all match, but three blades are angled to the left, and three blades are angled to the right - oh, and they're placed in alternating order. This means that the blades are effectively fighting themselves and not really creating any air flow at all. (This is also why it rocks maniacally from side to side when on high....but that's a whole other story.) I would normally just shake my head and laugh at this, but coupled with the lack of screens, it was enough to make me curse the previous tenant and demand reimbursement for the new brackets I purchased to "fix" the jacked up fan. The "fan fixing" experiment is going to be tonight. I'll keep you posted.

The "ride my bike to work" experiment was postponed to next week. There are just too many errands I'm running in the afternoons to pick up random crap to finish the apartment to justify riding my bike. (Although I'm sure I would look ridiculous with Rubbermaid containers strapped to my back. Worth considering, no?) I use that as the reason for the postponement, but in reality, it's the two flat tires that derailed my lofty goals. I'll get those fixed and get back to you.

I'm actually having quite a bit of fun getting settled in, jacked up fan or no. I just wish I could have all this fun while, you know, not working and stuff. After getting home, changing, walking the dogs, and then getting a bite to eat, there is woefully little time in the evenings to get crap put away. Still, progress is sometimes slow, and at least it's noticeable, right? I promise I'll get pictures up here when I'm not embarrassed of the state of my living quarters. (and, you know, when I get internet capabilities set up.)

Stay tuned for the update next week about the "mowing the lawn" experiment.

Monday, June 09, 2008


1) I have the best friends in the world, yo. I went into moving weekend thinking that I was so grateful for my friends coming to my aid with moving, but if worse came to worst, I would have been able to handle everything myself.

After watching those guys fit all of my furniture into the U-Haul like a jigsaw puzzle, not to mention wrestle a washer and dryer out of the basement (having to remove the basement door to get the dryer out) moving the new washer and dryer in, unload the furniture into the new (tiny) place, help me plan where to put the recliner (that barely barely fit through the door, actually) and THEN move the OLD washer and dryer to the boy's new place.... And do all of that with SMILES and LAUGHTER... well, there's no way I could have done that by myself. Buying them lunch and ice cream just doesn't express how very much I appreciate having them to rely on. It makes a single girl misty to know that she's not really that alone after all. (One guy even VOLUNTEERED for this madness....yes, Brad, I'm looking at you.) I'm so very lucky to have met these guys and I'm reminded of that with every act of generosity and kindness.

2) I have disrupted the lives of my children. Laney is already in the new place. I wanted her to have a chance to explore and take an ownership of sorts before I brought the dogs in. I'm not sure that she's actually taking advantage, though, because every time I'm there, she's tucked between the toilet and the bathtub. Maybe now that the furniture is in she'll be a bit more bold. I sure hope so, because we're coming down to crunch time, and the dogs are coming soon...

3) There is no right answer when moving animals. I moved Laney first, but she's obviously terrified alone in a new place without me. However, Casey freaked the HELL out with all these strange people in her apartment moving stuff out the door. She was barking pretty much constantly the entire time the boy moved his stuff on Saturday and I moved my stuff on Sunday. She calmed down a bit when she was let out to explore the emptied apartment, but she's still obviously on edge. Something's going on that she doesn't understand and she's not too happy about it. Blue, on the other hand, has obviously had disruption in his life before and come through it just fine because not only was he the most quiet one, I actually caught him snoozing amidst moving. Yay Blue!!

4) Remember when the boy loved his dog? Yeah, well, any sort of progress that Tyson has made has gone all to hell with the disruption of his routine. With Casey's barking, though constant, I could tell her to "sit" and "lie down" for a brief reprieve in the noise. Tyson has been pretty much foaming at the mouth for two days straight now, complete with whining/howling and heavy panting. At one point, one of my friends mentioned that he sounded like a horse with his panting. Like a neighing horse if that gives you any idea of how bad it was. When we had to move the items in his room, we put him in his crate since the door was standing open and he's the one dog that can't be trusted not to run off. Boy he loved that! Enough to empty his bowels for the boy to clean up. This morning, when putting him in his room as usual (no crate - it's already been moved,) he was immediately freaking out again. Apparently the lack of furniture scares the hell out of him. The boy is terrified of what will happen in the new place. I can't say I blame him. I can't say I'm sorry to see Tyson go, either.

5) Miraculously, everything fits in the new place. One chest will be taken back to my parent's house for storage (because it's kind of nice, and I don't want it in the basement) but everything else fits just fine. Even the recliner. I was beginning to despair about the recliner, but it just fits in the bedroom. I can't really recline, but at least it wasn't given to the spiders. AND it still sort of looks like a normal room. (Some boys will just put furniture anywhwere it fits and couldn't understand that I'm a girl, so the room still had to be functional....)

6) I'm currently on an air mattress in the old place to pack up the remaining items and not have to move the dogs quite yet. I'm officially entirely in the new place by the 15th at the latest. Next week begins the "ride my bike to work" experiment. My friends have bets going....the shortest time being three days before the experiment fails, and the longest being one week. I'm setting out to prove everyone wrong.... (Of course, if it rains, I get to drive.... :-)

7) When the boy got home from work, Bob was MIA. However, I saw him one last time on Friday. Unfortunately, he had attempted to cross a very busy street near my apartment complex - during rush hour. When I called to tell the boy, he made me turn around and attempt to rescue Bob. I did. It was too late. When I got through playing chicken with morning commuters (in my frigging high heels) and got close enough to confirm that Bob had moved on to a better place, the Public Works truck was pulling up to remove him from the road. I did NOT confirm this to the boy. I left it as "I wasn't sure" if he had made it. The boy takes these things pretty hard...better to let him hope, right?

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Lots of Crap, Little Apartment

So I'm moving. I'm moving from a very large three-bedroom-with-attached-garage apartment to half of a double with one bedroom. One small bedroom. (But it has a basement!! Can't forget the spider-infested, dark, dank, Emily-will-probably-never-do-laundry-again basement!! For some reason, everyone always tells me this (minus the adjectives) when I talk about my new place.)

And yet, even knowing the size difference, for some reason I didn't think that my stuff would be affected. After all, I lived in a one bedroom apartment before the boy, surely I can live in a one bedroom apartment after the boy just as easily.

Um, no.

There have already been sacrifices. I'm pretty sure I'm going to receive some sort of award from Goodwill for the number of bags I've taken over there in the last three days. All my beloved movies that happened to be on VHS tapes? Axed. VCR? Axed. I originally thought I would have to put the dining room table down in the basement but after careful measurements, I think it will fit in the living room and will serve as my study table. Computer desk will move to the bedroom. See? Everything fits.

Well, almost everything.

But I'm going back to school. Tuition is a bitch, and I'm making sacrifices for a reason. I can do this.

See, there's this recliner. And I don't have room for it. But it's my RECLINER. I'm emotionally attached. Here's a picture.

Oh, whoops...that's what it looks like when I'm not CONSTANTLY asking the boy to PICK! UP! YOUR! CLOTHES!...which I've pretty much stopped doing since we decided to take a brief hiatus on the cohabitation experiment. After all, what's the point now? Here's what the recliner really looks like:

Given my competitive nature and the fact that it's such a very cheerful color of blue (not to mention comfortable as HELL to read a book in) it's one of my favorite pieces of furniture. When you can see it.

But I have no room for it. None. And, to be honest, it matches nothing. I don't know what to do. So here are the options that I'm facing. I'll leave it up to you guys to tell me what to do with it.

1) Give it to the boy.
This has one pro (at least it would be used) and several cons (um, 'we're broken up' and 'I don't want Tyson on it' immediately spring to mind.) Ultimately, what keeps me from doing this is the thought that if we didn't ever patch things up, I would never see my recliner again. And then I would hate myself forever.

2) Put it in the basement.
The rational part of my mind knows that the basement in the new place is no better or worse than an unfinished basement in any other place. But seeing as how I've never lived in a place with an unfinished basement, I'm still creeped out. Spiderwebs everywhere. Spiderwebs mean spiders. Spiders crawling into my recliner. Into the stuffing. So that perhaps when the recliner is moved into a bigger location someday, the spiders would then exit and eat whoever is then sitting on the recliner. To be honest, I'm not really a fan of this option.

3) Goodwill.
Which would make me cry. And really, no one wants to see me cry. I'm not a pretty crier.

So I have no idea what to do. I can't put it in the bedroom and have any room to move at all. I can't put it in the living room and have any room to move at all. I can't put it in the kitchen, because - really? In the kitchen? Besides, I wouldn't have any room to move at all.

So I'm sad. I fear the recliner may have to pay the ultimate price in the name of continuing education. Thoughts? Comments? Salvation for the recliner?

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Adventures in the Apartment Complex

So, this post is a brief intermission between tales of moving. I have plenty of before and after pictures of painting to show you, but I took my computer apart and it won't be back until Sunday at the earliest, so you'll just have to wait on those.

BTW, how can no one have told me how much painting sucks? Seriously? I mean, here I was thinking it would be fun. Um, no. There was no fun. It was sucky. I agree with bsj and if anyone knows a boy that I can marry who enjoys painting, and a job I can get where I travel a lot, I'm in. Painting = suck. Especially the taping. Sample conversation:

"[Insert Boy's name here], why am I taping? It's my new come I don't get to do the fun painting?"
"Because taping is the bitch work, and you're the bitch."
"Point taken."

I did eventually get to paint (and it wasn't fun painting)...and then I found out that I'm really really bad at it. Either that or the boy is just really really good at it. (It does have direct relation to his job...) I don't know if it was just the patience thing...or the fact that the color I used was darker... Whatever. My kitchen (that I painted) was super streaky and my bedroom (that he painted) looked perfect. We had to go back for a second coat in the kitchen to cover my mistakes. My kitchen is now YELLOW! (or GOLDENROD if you want to be really specific.) Whatever. My accent wall kicks ass. You'll see...

This morning when I was walking the dogs, we came across this:

It's not a great picture, but I would say the sucker was about a foot and a half to two feet across at his widest. Seeing as how my only experience with a turtle was a box turtle that I "rescued" from my backyard and took into science class in the eighth grade (and named "Louis" by the way. "Louis the Turtle" to be exact) and given the fact that this turtle bared little to no resemblance to Louis, and in fact had a large tail that was alarmingly similar to an alligator tail, I figured this was not a turtle to mess with.

Since the turtle was just chilling in my apartment complex, a good quarter mile from the nearest pond, I originally thought he was just a lawn decoration. Casey pranced up to the turtle with an "Oh, hello weird other living organism" expression. When the turtle hissed at her, I regained my senses and pulled her away from it. I then rushed home, took a picture on my cell phone (excuse the crappiness of the picture) and called the boy to ask what the heck sort of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle I had stumbled across.

Imagine my dismay to find out that it is a very ordinary snapping turtle. (Well, a very ordinary snapping turtle that could have taken Casey's nose off had I not removed her from striking distance.) Alas, all my dreams of having a new species of turtle named after Casey have been shattered. (I still think that alligator tail is freaky. You should have seen it in real life.) The boy went on and on (and on and on) about what he would have done with the turtle (put it on our enclosed porch) so that he could "rescue" it and return it to the nearest pond after work. Whatever. I wasn't picking up that thing. When my cat hisses at Casey, she gets scratched. When geese hiss at me, they charge me and are MEAN. I wasn't about to see what this mutant turtle did after hissing. No sir. I like having 10 fingers.

I have since decided that the mutant turtle will be called "Bob" and that we can just hope that Bob is still around when the boy and I get home. After all, think about how much fun the post will be when the boy attempts to move Bob and suffers Bob's wrath? I'll be right there taking pictures for you all...(when I'm not saving the bitten off piece of finger on ice so that the doctors in the ER can sew it back on.) We can only dream...