Thursday, May 31, 2012

66% of This Post is About Animals

Oh hey there. Did all my new Facebook friends like how I spammed every damn person on my friends list with my new FB page? I thought you might.

It's been two weeks since my last post. To make up for this horrible lapse in time where you were unaware of my daily motions, I've compiled a list (of course) of some things that have recently occurred in my life.

1. Sad news first - one of my rats died. He got really sick out of nowhere, seemed to have a bad upper respiratory infection and was struggling to breathe. I packed him up in his little travel cage and dramatically rushed to Virginia, to the only emergency exotic vet in a 30 mile radius that was open at 11 pm. He stopped breathing about 5 minutes after we got there. Watching a team of 4 people frantically trying to give my tiny little rat CPR (through a little straw) was slightly adorable, albeit sad.The vet thinks he was having heart failure, and that's what triggered the respiratory issues.They were really nice and didn't charge me the crazy high fee a trip to the emergency vet usually costs - just the body disposal fee of $24.  Now I'm trying to make sure to spend a lot of time with his brother, Pippin, so he doesn't get too lonely.
Rest in peace, little friend.

2. On a related note, the day before this happened, our friendly exterminator stopped by for his monthly visit. This guy is fantastic - he's really nice and very funny - but he is also utterly terrified of rats and cats. He's from Africa, and he told me that they use cats in voodoo to cast spells. He keeps trying to convince me that my cats are evil spirits and that it's really stupid to keep them as pets. He's a pretty good sport about having to risk his mortal soul every time he comes over to my apartment, and always jokes good-naturedly about it. However, the day after he came to our apartment, my rat died and Stella got a cold. I do not think this is a coincidence.

3. I walk two dogs named Pansy and Rogi. Pansy is a great dane and Rogi is half dane, half lab. They are both giants, and within 10 pounds of my size (Pansy >10lb, Rogi <10lb). Pansy is out of her head in love with me. She as abused as a puppy, and abused dogs frequently trust very few people - but the ones they do trust, they bond very strongly to. Rogi, on the other hand, is thoroughly unimpressed with me. I have never met a dog that gives less of a fuck than Rogi. It's kind of awesome.
Because Pansy and Rogi are both rescues with tormented pasts, they have certain walk requirements. Rogi is utterly terrified of cars, so she's generally kept away from them. Pansy is utterly terrified of dogs, so she's kept away from them. Both of them are very wary of people, and absolutely HATE black men with hats on. (It's pretty weird. I don't know why, but boy do they get angry when black men wear hats). Considering their combined weight is almost 250 pounds, any interaction that might result in them angrily charging someone/something usually ends pretty badly for me. I'm actually pretty good at keeping them under control (brushes off shoulders) but I still prefer to keep things quiet. Thus, our walks generally take place along back allies towards a nice, usually vacant field in Rock Creek Park.
Last week, we showed up to find a small herd of deer. Pretty common in DC - we have a crazy deer population. The lone buck stopped grazing as we approached and turned to watch us. All three of us froze and watched him, fascinated. This went on for quite some time. It was a little while before I realized that he was acting kind of strange. He had turned so that he was facing us head on, his tail had gone from upright to lowered and stiff, he wasn't breaking eye contact, and he was gradually lowering his head. I don't know much about deer body language, but in dog body language, that's a pretty clear "I am about to attack the shit out of you" stance. Not only that, but the dogs and I were all giving a pretty clear "Game on, muthafucka" response. My initial reaction was "Ooh! Maybe if I keep staring at this deer he'll charge us! That would be so exciting!" Then I realized that it would be more dangerous than exciting. I turned the girls around and we meandered away from the deer and his ladies.
The next day, we came back to find the deer back in the field. I was about to leave again, when I thought, "No way, dude". This is the only place I can take these dogs without fear of puppy PTSD relapse. Pansy always rolls around gleefully in the grass, Rogi sits like a dying toad on a log and stares at nothing, I make buttercup chains for them (which they and their owners, I'm sure, love). I wasn't about to let this piece of crap deer keep us out of this field. So, I marched over about as close as he would let me, stood and glared with all the aggression I could muster. He glared back at me for a bit, but then finally sulked off into the woods. I felt like a hero.*

4. My dad came to visit me on Sunday, as he usually does. He recently went to a gun show, and was eager to tell me about it. My dad is a Vietnam vet and former cop, so this dude knows quite a bit about guns. He brought with him a target practice poster from the gun show - you know, the ones that look like the silhouette of a person?
Yeah, these guys.
Well, my dad shows up with the one he was shooting. It has about 30 bullet holes through the head, 30 through the heart, and 2 slightly off to the side of the head that he missed. Shot from 25 yards away. And as I'm standing there in awe, admiring his bad-assery, he's lying on my living room floor, baby talking to my cats.

5. I was hanging out in downtown Annapolis this past Saturday. As my friend Emmy and I were walking down busy West Street, I see a freaking snake hurrying across the road. Naturally, I run out into the street and begin to try to nudge him to safety with my foot. He (she?), however, decides that I'm actually attacking him/her/it and begins striking at me. We do this little dance for awhile, me tapping with my foot and jumping back as I'm lunged at, gradually moving to the side of the street (the whole time Emmy is begging me to get out of the street and stop playing with the snake). Eventually I managed to coerce it over to the curb. Good deed of the day, ladies and gentlemen.

6. Two nights ago the treadmill in my apartment's gym wasn't working. I decided instead to go for a nighttime run in the thunderstorm. Pleasantly cool rain on my skin after a hot day, lightening streaking the sky - it was awesome. Just as I was thinking to myself, "Why don't I do this every night?" I was stopped by 4 police cars and a cop putting up caution tape, who informed me that I was about to jog onto a crime scene. Oh. Right. I live in Murderville. Thanks, my neighborhood.

So as you can see, I've been very busy getting up to all sorts of shenanigans. I promise my next post will be more timely. I know you'll all be waiting on baited breath.

*There is a highly significant chance that this was all in my head. The deer probably was just idly watching me that first day, and probably wandered off the second day because I was boring it. But when you're a theater kid, you've got to narrate your life to yourself in an epic way.


  1. Yesterday I was walking Monster through the woods and decided to be bold and drop his leash and let him wander since he is glued to me at the hip and doesn't let me out of his line of eyesight. Then he saw a deer and "game on mothafucka" from your post sounds about right. Deer stood no fuckin' chance. Next time you walk Rogi and Pansy, Monster and I will accompany and my 35 lb. Cocker Spaniel will protect them. Except Pansy will be terrified of Monster and Monster will desperately try to woo her with his dog-charming ways. Should make for an interesting couple of blog posts.

    1. I'm tempted to do this solely for the blog posts.

  2. Everything about this post was wonderful, except the loss of your rat buddy :( What was the place in VA's name? I think that is where I took my guinea pig and my mouse..they were freaking awesome.
    Your dog walking story was phenom. Miss you girl.

    1. I miss you too! We need to have another margarita rendezvous. And the vet was Pender Vet. They were really sweet.