Monthly Archives: February 2017


Well, it’s happened again. I never mean to act upon my more “save the world one cat at a time” impulses, but here we are again.

Last Summer, this lovely little creature started hanging out on Roman’s second-storey deck:


Poor thing was being harassed by the neighborhood cats and was taking refuge behind Roman’s BBQ that sits on the deck – we would hear them late at night thumping around. She wore no collar and seemed hungry, so I fed her and made friends. I then discovered she was covered with fleas so I bought some flea stuff from the vet and put it on. She disappeared for a couple of weeks but then showed up with a flea collar and a fancy pearl-rope collar with a silver charm that reads “Duchess.”

Okie-dokie! She has a home (later surmised to be the neighbors downstairs in the adjacent building) and maybe they’re taking care of her now. She would come to see me on occasion, but it appeared she had a home.

Flash forward to this Winter and she was all over me any time I went over there, seeming to be cold and always hungry. Roman’s building doesn’t allow pets, and I hadn’t moved yet, so I did what I could for her, hoping it would be enough. She was clearly living outside all the time, and because of the fleas she had no real undercoat to keep her warm. I was angry, but what can you do?

Last week was the final straw – she was starving for food and attention and covered with fleas again. Clearly her people were no longer interested in taking care of her. I know the building where they live allows pets, but for whatever reason they were leaving this TINY cat outside to fend for herself and I just couldn’t bear it any more. A catnapping was orchestrated (after proper flea treatment for Duchess, Mr. Big and Sabu) and she came home with me on Sunday afternoon. Roman was not at all sure about my little caper, but I told him that I would bring her back if her people missed her, which I am (almost) sure I’ll be able to do…Maybe…

She accepted the ride in the cat carrier well enough, with hardly any howling and when we arrived home I put it on the floor so Sabu and Mr. Big could see her but she would be protected. Mr. Big had made friends at the trailer park, so I knew he wouldn’t be a problem, but it turns out Duchess loathes and despises dogs – the volume of the growling and hissing were amazing considering she weighs maybe five pounds. She was quickly re-located to my bedroom where the door was shut and I let her out of the carrier.

She was not at all nervous, hopped right out and started looking for food – always a good sign. The bedroom door has a gap at the bottom of 1.5″ and Nosy the Dog had her face all up in there, desperate to see the new arrival, which set Duchess off on a hissing, growling rant all over again. All-righty-then! I left her alone to do some Stuff and repeatedly shooed the dog away from the door.

Before long, Mr. Big was laying down in front of the door, front paws in the gap, purring, chirping and calling softly to Duchess, who replied with hisses and growls. It was a sight to see! You may recall that Mr. Big is a very large cat – haven’t taken him in to be weighed, but he’s pushing 20 pounds for sure. To see him prostrating himself like that was hilarious and I’ll admit to laughing out loud and calling Juan to come see the spectacle.

That first night was rough – Sabu slept outside the bedroom door, whining every now and then, convinced my face would be eaten off by this strange cat I’d allowed into her house. Mr. Big would occasionally whisper plaintively for his new Lady Love to “please, baby please, baby please,” open the door, to which she replied with more growls and hissing.

The three of them kept it up all.night.long. Sabu and Mr. Big were obviously tired after their vigil, but Duchess, having slept perched on the corner of the bed nearest the door, was feeling quite perky and ready for breakfast. I closed the door and let her be alone while I was at work.

After work I devised a way to prop the door open for the cats while keeping the dog out and let Mr. Big into the room. I was hoping Duchess would come out from under the bed and maybe even leave the bedroom, but it was not to be. Mr. Big went in and started his wooing afresh. There was a lot of this –


Mr. Big was so sincere with his lovely words, trying to gently coax her out from under the bed with sweet nothings and promises to be the Perfect Gentleman if only she would come out and let him shower her with his love.* He tried every trick in his arsenal, chirping, meowing softly, flopping over on his side to show how non-threatening he was, pushing his paws under the edge of the bed so she could see he was hiding nothing, playing with the edges of the rug, everything he could think of to impress a potential lover and playmate. Duchess responded with growling and hisses and there was no-fucking-way she was ever going to come out while he was there.

I left them to it for three hours. He didn’t give up. Neither did she.

And with that I shooed Mr. Big out, closed the door and got ready for bed. As soon as the door was shut she was ready to play and be petted, like there was no threat in the world. She’s really a very lovey and snuggly cat – something Mr. Big is not at all interested in being, and it’s my hope that she’ll be a good Lap Cat like my old Siamese was because I miss that kind of furry attention. Time will tell.

And now we’re a two-cat house again. Shhhh…nobody needs to know about this, ‘k?

*Mr. Big is neutered. I’m assuming Duchess is spayed as she’s never had kittens in the months I’ve known her.

1 Comment

Posted by on February 28, 2017 in Uncategorized


I did laundry last night…

It’s a party all the time around here, I tellya!

As usual, my laundry accomplishment has a bit of a backstory.

For most of my adult life I rented apartments and did not have a washer & dryer. Going to the laundromat was a weekly event and I was used to it. Some of the apartment complexes had a laundry room, which made it easier, but it was still an ordeal.

When I finally moved into a house with hookups I was thrilled! I would buy a washer & dryer and finally enjoy doing a load of laundry any time I wanted to! And then Captain Bligh started in with his bullshit and rules. I was forced to buy machines that he approved of and was given detailed instructions about how to use them so they would “retain their re-sale value.” He treated me like a child about the whole enterprise and stole all the magic of having these wonder machines in my own home. Since we weren’t living together at the time, I ignored his “instructions” and never did laundry when he was there. It made my blood boil to be treated this way, but like every other time I swallowed my opinion in the hope of keeping the peace.

Then I moved in with him and he informed me of all the New Laundry Rules. His machines were “delicate,” which is code for piece of shit. The cycle selector knob on the washer was gone, making it difficult to set it properly. The septic system was shit, too, so there was no way I could do more than one load a day. There were strict conditions about how much soap and water were to be used and how to sort the clothes. The list went on and on, but of course it was MY job to do the laundry, and I better keep up with it or there would be another lecture about how lazy and irresponsible I was, how I didn’t deserve to live in his house because I wasn’t “contributing [my] share.” As you might guess, the entire time I was with Captain Bligh I never managed to do the laundry correctly, according to him.

Anyway. Roman took me all around town on Saturday in search of my Dream Machines. Turns out they cost considerably more than I thought they would. I had planned to spend my tax refund on a nice set, but they all had too many bells and whistles and I have very specific requirements for my wool sweaters and fleece and was not at all confident they would do the job without making a felted mess. I know, it’s weird, and a long story for another day.

After a day of looking and comparing, we ended up at St. Vinny’s where they had several perfectly good used sets for less than a single new machine and none of them were bristling with electronic controls. Perfect! The machines are donated and then a local crew goes through them top to bottom to make sure they work properly. They then touch up the paint and make sure they have all the hoses, etc. needed to hook them up and they go out onto the floor for sale. Being Scotch, you know I prefer a bargain over a pretty…er…control panel. They even deliver and set them up for a small fee!

The “new” machines were waiting for me when I got home from work last night and I was eager to take them for a spin. What a wonderful thing! I ran two loads and everything worked great! The washer is amazingly quiet and the dryer gets plenty hot enough to get the job done.

It’s the Simple Things in life that push my buttons, that’s a fact! I look forward to many years of doing laundry on my own terms, on my own schedule, and any damn way I want to do it 🙂



Posted by on February 21, 2017 in Uncategorized


I am not a snowflake

January 20 was a significant day in my life and in the lives of everyone in America, but not for the same reasons.

On January 20, 2013 I walked away from an abusive relationship with a narcissist. I was consumed with the anger of a thousand fiery suns. I had been lied to, gaslighted, verbally abused, financially raped, physically intimidated, sleep deprived, starved of food and affection, beaten down emotionally, isolated from my family and friends, and kept on a very short leash “for my own good” which led to my questioning every belief I ever had. I was a shadow of myself and I knew it. My life was a dark hole I was determined to crawl out of at any cost.

On January 20, 2017 I was on a news blackout so I did not see Lord Cheeto* sworn into the office of the President of the United States. By all accounts (not his, as he reminds us with every TV appearance by himself or his minions) it was a shining shit-show that was poorly attended. Meanwhile the first of what will become hundreds, if not thousands, of protests was quite well attended the very next day. On all seven continents! I attended my first protest on a day that should have been a celebration of one more year of freedom from a narcissist.

This has become my life –


I really didn’t want to get all political here (hence my silence) but I find silence impossible, just as I found mute acceptance impossible four years ago. Others are much more knowledgeable and well spoken than I am, and on some level it feels like shouting into the Void, but I don’t think I’ll be able to keep my mouth shut any longer.

I’ve done some research, read a lot of articles, talked to many people, watched hours and hours of political coverage on TV (and not just the “lying liberal media,” but FOX and other conservative outlets as well), hoping that the crawling in my gut is just an overreaction to a situation that *feels* like being back with the narc, hoping I really am just being “too emotional,” that life will go back to normal (whatever that is) and I won’t wake up with a feeling of dread, wondering what our so-called leader has blown up in the night. Sadly, the nightmare just won’t end and I feel compelled to put a voice to my fears and concerns, if only to get them out of my head.

Never having been overly concerned with politics, I am sadly under informed on the subject. Alarmingly, Lord Cheeto appears to be even less informed than I am, and that should scare the shit out of everyone. The difference is that I am working hard towards an understanding of our political system while he is signing Executive Orders and pissing off everyone he comes in contact with while hiding what he’s REALLY doing behind closed doors. Hint: he’s making deals that will one day be called treason.

Way back when he was just Candidate Trump he made many statements that showed his true colors. I was horrified that a man who said “grab them by the pussy” got the republican nomination for the highest office in the land. “Blood coming from her wherever…” didn’t disqualify him in the eyes of his supporters, either. WTF?!? There are too many examples to recount here – you’re all familiar with how trashy and small-minded he is.

But, okay. Fine. He got the job. Not exactly fair and square, but we have a process and that process landed him in the White House. No one has to like the results, but we must all respect the process. And surely he would surround himself with Smart People who would guide him and counsel restraint and common sense. Right? He said he’s a “really smart guy” and smart people know they don’t know everything and he, being a “great businessman” knows that he will need savvy advisors to help guide him in his quest to “make America great again.” Right?

Oh, but wait! Turns out everything logical or moderate he said while on the campaign trail was just a big ol’ pile of bullshit and he really does intend to rule America like a king, appointing his favorite courtiers to choice positions in his kingdom; stripping the country of all its resources to line his own pockets; killing off the peasants by relaxing regulations for all his friends so they can continue to poison the air, water and soil with no consequences; well, the list just goes on and on, doesn’t it?

But that’s not why you’re here, is it?

The bottom line is that Lord Cheeto is just like Captain Bligh** and I feel like I’m back in that Dark Place. Every time I hear him speak his lies to the press (and it’s about everything, even things that can be easily refuted) I’m reminded of being told that I’m “not remembering that [incident] correctly.” Every time he dismisses a reporter with that damned snort and eye roll as soon as they say what organization they’re with I’m reminded of how Captain Bligh would do the exact same thing when I was trying to defend myself against yet another of his wild claims of my “misbehavior.” Every time he answers a legitimate question with word salad about how great he is (and, really, can someone please give him a few new adjectives?) I’m reminded of all the late-night speeches Captain Bligh would grace me with, telling me, over and over, how I should just toe the line and do what he said so that one day I would finally be worthy of him. Every time one of his minions lies on TV about something he said, or did, or didn’t do (taxes, anyone?) I’m taken back to the times Captain Bligh’s loyal minions backed him up about something he’d told them that was completely false.

The list goes on and on, folks. I’m sick at heart. Those of you who have lived with an abusive partner understand how I feel – they all read from the same script while telling anyone who will listen how very unique and special they are.

Short of leaving the country, what can I do? I’ll tell you what I can do: I can raise my voice in protest along with the thousands and thousands of others who will not sit down and take abuse from men like Drumph and his minions. It’s an overwhelming task and it’s easy to get burned out as every new lie comes to the surface, as each executive order seeks to take away another civil liberty for everyone who is female or has brown skin, as projects like DAPL get pushed forward at the risk of the water we all drink, as refugees starve and die because our borders have been closed to “those people.”

Because there are so many protests, so many reasons to march and advocate, we all have to pick our battles or get burned out by the emotional roller coaster – anyone who has lived with a narcissist or other abusive person knows the cycle they use to wear you down, and this is no different – we shut down when it becomes overwhelming and then we’re caught in the trap, too busy trying to survive with the shred of sanity left to us to protest each new atrocity.

I’ve chosen Women’s Rights and Clean Water as my causes because no one can support ALL of the issues we’re facing today. I will be marching in Eugene and attending rallies and supporting my representatives any way I can. For the very first time as I was filling out my tax forms online, I sent donations to Planned Parenthood and the Oregon Food Bank because if those of us who have a little bit to spare don’t support those who are desperate for food and health care, we’re no better than the monsters in the White House.

*I can’t even say “President Trump” out loud because he is not deserving of the office. I will not glorify him in this way, therefore I will use various nick-names in place of the honorific. I hope you don’t mind.

**Still not ready to out that asshole, but calling him “narc” just ain’t cutting it any more. I actually called him Captain Bligh to his face once and he was confused. “William Bligh was an amazing sailor and led his men on an epic journey – they would have died without him! He was a superlative navigator and masterful captain. How is that an insult? We all should aspire to be as great as Captain Bligh,” or somesuch, was his reply. My jaw dropped. “Everyone hated him!” was all I could muster in reply. “So?” He really didn’t care, so long as he got his way, but everyone who knows him knows exactly what I mean when I use that name.


Posted by on February 17, 2017 in Uncategorized

%d bloggers like this: