Tuesday, July 15, 2008

So I have this tattoo....

I know. You're shocked, right? I think my husband was, too, when I told him a couple of years ago that I wanted to get one. He had 2 at the time so what *could* he say. But me? A tattoo?

Let's review the whole tattoo process.

First, there's the design. Figuring out what you want permanently engraved on your body. For life. Forever. Sometimes that's where people stop. I mean, it's PERMANENT. (I'm 43. What's this thing on my back hip area gonna look like when I'm 70?) Then there's choosing the artist to do the work. And the shop. You want cleanliness. And someone who knows what they are doing and cares about their work. And then there is the $$. It ain't cheap. That's all I'm saying. Final decision is placement. WHERE do you want this FOREVER AND EVER piece of art on your body? In plain view? Hidden to the world?

All the decisions are made. You are ready. And then....then....there's the needle.

Yes. The needle. And that's why my husband was shocked I wanted one. I don't do needles. I'm not as bad as my friend, Karen, but I don't like them. Hate them. And needles are involved in tattoos.

So I fly out to Michigan one summer to meet some on-line friends. (I didn't go alone. I took friends with me.) One of the gals had some connections to a local tattoo parlor (Which calling it a parlor, by the way, lends one to believe alcohol will be served. It is not. It should be.). The guy was nice, gave me a deal, and drafted a beautiful one-of-a-kind tattoo drawing from something I had sent ahead of time.

Have I mentioned the needles?

So getting to the parlor (that doesn't serve alcohol) was half my battle. I empowered my friends to NOT let me back out of this endeavor. And on the way I had a mini panic attack. Probably because I started thinking about the needles. I mentioned those, didn't I?

We get there. Go in. He shaves my hip...which my friends tell me is really my butt. However, I refuse to acknowledge that some strange man has just shaved my butt. So it's my HIP. He applies the copied outline to my skin. And we are ready.

Wait. I need just a moment.

Okay...no, wait. I need another moment.

Okay. I'm ready.

He just does a tiny part of the outline just so I know what to expect. Not soooo bad. This will be a breeze!

1-1/2 hours later it was done. It was NOT a breeze. Outline, shading, coloring....auuughh!! And on a completely sensitive area of my body. I mean, it doesn't even see the sun, people! What was I thinking? The area was throbbing in pain when he was finished. I almost didn't make it to the white highlights. I had tears in my eyes and I was just DONE.

But I loved it.


I'm a bit of a Wizard of Oz freak. But that's another post altogether. The meaning behind this tattoo, other than the obvious? I had to have one. It's the law when you get a tattoo. Did you know that? You have to have meaning and reason behind the design you choose. If you don't, they won't give you one. It's the law. Okay, not really. But my husband insisted that I really think about the design and make it personal and meaningful.

I had a rough few years prior to the tattoo. They involved family. The ruby slippers represent me traveling the road to find my way back home. And there is no place like home.

Corny? Maybe. But I have permanently marked my body so that I will forever be reminded of where I was and how far I traveled to get where I am. And I really do love the final product. It's a good thing it turned out so lovely.

Those needles are never coming anywhere near my body again.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

When good dogs go bad…

Remember this beast? Yeah. He’s back again, causing more trouble than ever. Seems as though Hamish escaped the confines of the back yard. We are never really sure how the escape happens, but the broken board behind the ivy looks suspicious.

I wonder what goes through his little mind when he escapes.

“I’M FREE! I’M FREE! Get me some food STAT! Anything! Cat food, Dog food, gerbil food. Whatever. You got some? I need some! I will look cute and pitiful for you so you feed me!”

But, alas, the escapee always gets caught. Usually by one of my sons while he is running amuck (that’s for you, Mona) at the park a block away. But this time he was caught by a neighbor down the street. He no doubt was nabbed while munching down on some kittie food left on the front porch. The neighbor wrote some signs with their phone number listed at the bottom and hung them in a few strategic places in the neighborhood. We promptly called when we realized the “Found. Beagle.” was no doubt our little troublemaking escape artist. But when we called the number, we were informed that they had taken Hamish to the pound. Then they gave us a reference number.

Doggie jail.

The escapee had been nabbed and turned in.

So I hauled my butt down there to fetch him. I was promptly charged some fees. Then the paperwork was handed to me to sign. As I looked at the pile of paperwork, I stopped. There it was. The heart wrenching evidence that my dog now had a record. And I was there to post bail.

The mug shot.


Hamish is on probation right now. He is not allowed to go in the back yard without adult supervision until the fence is fixed. I have also put him on a diet. His repeated escapes have given him access to more food than he is normally allowed to have. As a matter of fact, I’m pretty surprised that he even fit through the hole in the fence. He is slightly winded going up the stairs.

He is also wearing an ankle-bracelet type of device. It’s called a collar…with a license. The next time he escapes, whoever finds him will know to call us directly.

Probation is one year. But he may be released for good behavior before then. We shall see, though. I suspect the postman might be at his probation hearing.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

How much per gallon?

$4.59 for a gallon of gas

Let’s discuss this for a moment. With the current price of gas and the mileage I get on my car, I have been pondering how I could stretch my travel budget. So what about less than a gallon? How many units of measurements are there that are less than a gallon?

From Wikipedia:

The gallons in current use are subdivided into eight pints or four quarts. Pints are further subdivided into fluid ounces and liquid gallons are also subdivided into 32 gills, i.e. a quarter of a pint. The sub-units of pint and fluid ounce, despite having the same name in both Imperial and U.S. units, differ in volume and are therefore not interchangeable. The principal difference is that the Imperial pint contains 20 Imperial fluid ounces, whereas the U.S. pint contains 16 U.S. fluid ounces. A U.S. fluid ounce is approximately 4% heavier than an Imperial fluid ounce and therefore they are often used interchangeably, whereas U.S. and Imperial pints and gallons are sufficiently different that they should not be used interchangeably, although they often are.


Okay. So if I put just $1.00 in my gas tank, that’s almost a quart. And based on my city gas mileage I could go not quite 6 miles.

6 miles.

That’s about how far it is to the gas station with the cheapest gas….$4.59. So on $1.00 I could drive back and forth to the gas station. I think there is a grocery store in between said cheapest gas station and my house. There is also my post office, several fast food restaurants and Baskin Robbins. So I would be SET!

Oh. I guess I would need to get to work. That’s about 11 miles away. And I really need to get there to pay for the $1.00 worth of gas. So I guess I better put in the whole gallon.


Jed the poor mountaineer who barely kept his family fed? Yeah. It's because gas is $4.59 a freakin' gallon! Guess I better grab my shotgun and go shootin' at some food and maybe I'll hit the mother lode.

Then I can just fill my tank and go wherever I want.

Friday, July 4, 2008


Hope everyone enjoys their day with family and friends. We are doing the normal bbq stuff....but, sadly, no city fireworks here this year. Northern CA is already burning down and they don't want to risk setting off more. So maybe a few small ones in front of the house. Of course, if Troy goes to buy them we'll be having quite a show and hopefully won't have to call the fire dept.

My daughter is sitting here while I post this and wants to send a shout out to all who read this!! If you lurk, make sure you post a big "hello" back to her.

Happy 4th everyone!
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