Painting With Shotguns XXXIV
If you go ahead and try to pronounce XXXIV, I bet you’ll end up with something that sounds like “shiv.”
Which is exactly what I’m going to do to you right now. I’ll set down the shotgun on this fine day and instead will shiv you betwixt the ribs with a sharpened piece of wisdom that I broke off of my brain.
Forget Painting With Shotguns.
It’s Stabby Time With Shiv Wisdom!
Cats Are Awesome On The Internet, But Not So Awesome In My Yard
Our neighbors on both sides have cats as “pets.”
I slap quote marks around that word because, for all intents and purposes, what they have is a habit of keeping cats outside and feeding them whenever it’s convenient. These are not responsible pet owners. These are people who don’t want the responsibility of, y’know, having to clean up after their animals or having to take them to the vet to get fixed or having to give one whit about the safety of these animals about which they pretend to care.
Let’s take a look. At present, at least five cats orbit our yard. One black, one gray, two black-and-whites, and one orangey beast. None of these animals are particularly pleasant. Yesterday, at least four of them were involved in cat fights in and around our yard. All that squealing, hissing, and spitting. Good times. The dogs love it. And by “love it,” I mean, bark endlessly at the Feline Race War going on outside our windows. And by “bark endlessly,” I mean, “distract Chuck from writing.”
These cats use much of our front flowerbeds as a toilet. I know they do so because, if you go out on our small patch of front lawn during a hot day, the area smells like cat urine. Cat urine. Such a delightful odor!
The cats also perform other lovely tricks for us on our property. Like, say, they chase away or kill the pretty birds. Any bird feeder we put out there is basically “lunch buffet” for the kitty-cats. Oh! And the baby bunnies, they kill those, too. And they kill mice and leave them around our yard, which is really awesome when the dogs find them. That’s just what I want — I want our dogs to find a diseased mouse carcass left behind by what is likely a diseased cat. Yes! Score. (Cats, for the record, are not good pest control. They destabilize a local ecosystem.)
Sometimes, I just find blood. No animal. Just blood in the snow or blood on the grass. Serial murder on our lawn. Call the blood spatter analyst. Stat!
Cats are excellent vectors of disease, by the way. Toxoplasmosis is the big one. But they can carry all manner of parasite. Indoor cats aren’t a problem. But outdoor cats do all kinds of awful things you don’t know about, like, ohhh, eat sick animals. Which makes them sick (go figure!) or able to spread sickness (surprise!). Kids and other pets are susceptible in return.
These cats, at present, have not yet tried to battle our dogs, though other cats have.
Like, say, that cat above.
That cat — mostly a friendly one — is named Midnight.
Oh, wait, no, was named Midnight.
Where is Midnight now? Midnight is jolly well fucking dead. And before you freak out, no, I did not kill him. Some other animal killed him. Raccoon, maybe, I dunno. Midnight joins the neighbor’s other cat, a fat fluffy tabby by the name of… I dunno, Fuckface or Shitpuff or something, who also died similarly.
They died because the neighbor just… let them wander. Roam endlessly! Go, kitties, go. How sweet! How fun! How independent! How dead-by-raccoon-scratches!
A couple years back, I hit a cat with my car. Cat darted out on a fast road, slammed into my tire, not under it, and died. I felt awful. The cat had a collar — no tag, but this was someone’s pet. Where do I go? Who do I tell? I don’t see many dead dogs on the side of the road, but I see dead cats all the time. Because people treat their cats like they’re disposable.
So, here’s the plea. If you’re one of those cat owners who thinks their cat is some precious little independent lioness, and you “respect the cat’s right to roam,” you’re not helping. You’re hurting. And yes, you’re an irresponsible pet owner. At least, at least get the cat fixed so you don’t propagate the problem (and fixed cats roam less). But I beg you: keep your cat inside. Your cat has no more right to roam than my dog. I wouldn’t let my dogs just amble aimlessly so they can crap in the neighbor’s yard and run out in front of cars. “But cats like to be free!” So do mice. And snakes. But if you have them as pets, do you let them out?
If you care about the cats, keep them controlled.
If you care about your neighbors, keep your cats controlled.
For the record, despite my allergies, I like cats. In fact, I think I like cats more than some cat owners. My neighbor’s reaction to her two cats being eaten was a sad shrug, like, “It was inevitable.” No, it wasn’t inevitable. It’s like letting your child wander into the tiger pen at the zoo and when the child gets mauled to death you’re like, “Well, it’s a hard world out there.” No. It’s a hard world inside the tiger pen, dipshit. Her current cat (the aforementioned orangey one) is another wanderer. No control. No anything. It wanders. Aimlessly. Roaming toward whatever fate awaits.
It’s a passive form of animal abuse, is what it is.
Will you miss Lost when it’s gone? I will, but I’m also happy it’s ending — I like that it’s moving toward a natural conclusion. More television shows should come with a built-in time limit. The “endless seasons” syndrome actually lets a lot of shows go bad on the vine.
Did you see last night’s episode?
I won’t spoil. Not that it much matters — everywhere I turn, from Twitter to TV Guide, somebody has already spoiled the big deaths.
Is it a spoiler to say, “People died?”
If it is, too bad. Some folks died.
Actually, none of the articles mention one of the dead characters. Which is sad. I loved this character, and this character’s last words are perfect for said individual. No one is mourning this character. Sad.
Everybody else, well, it’s interesting. My wife reacts to character death as if the creators have betrayed her. She actually goes through the stages of grieving, I think.
I won’t recap the episode, really — that’s Hindmarch’s job, and a fine job he does with it — but I will note that I think the Sideways world is possibly not the result of the bomb going off, but rather the result of whatever happens at the end of this season. I think the Sideways world represents a nicer future (present and past, too) for these characters, and what we’re seeing is the hell they had to go through to rewrite time and space to make that happen. For most, the Sideways world is actually a better one. (And by the end, I think this’ll be especially true — I think we’re going to see lots of characters we like die, and die badly.)
Ride The Lightning, Taser Kid
So, in case you didn’t know, some dumbass teenager ran out onto the field at a Phillies game, got chased around for a minute, and then when the cop had a shot, he Tasered the shit out of the kid. Er, maybe not literally, I don’t know if the lad voided his bowels or not.
Lots of chatter as to whether or not it was necessary force.
I mean — ehh?
In this day and age, especially when we just had a terrorist car comb in Times Square, it’s not the best idea to violate space you shouldn’t. Somebody doesn’t Tase him and he suddenly is able to detonate some kind of “underpants nuke” and kill everybody in that stadium, well, then it’s a big ol’ oopsie, innit?
Alternately, it was clearly some doofy fanboy, and where the fuck was he going to go? You’ve basically got him in a giant cage known as a “stadium.” Is he going to grow wings out of his ass?
Lots of questions about how safe the Taser is, but I assume it’s just as safe as tackling the dude to the ground where you could’ve, I dunno, internally decapitated him or something.
Really, the big thing for me is –
Holy shit, what a great photo.
You seen the photo? The AP photo?
I dunno. Am I allowed to post an AP photo on my blog?
Probably not. I’d argue that’s kind of bullshit, but hey, whatever.
Here’s the link to that photo. Incredible shot.
Chain Link Fence
May 5th is CINCO DE JUNIUS! Fellow DMLA client Seth Harwood is rocking pre-orders of his new book at noon today. You should go and check it out. While you’re checking things out, have you popped on over to Tyrus Books recently? Do that, too. For me. You know you love me. And you will perform my every whim.
I like what Andrea Phillips says here about “Reclaiming Your Rut.” I adore my routines.
I feel like you haven’t been checking out Russell Bailey’s new gaming-slash-pop-culture blog, Fantasy Heartbreaker. Tsk-tsk-tsk. You have 30 seconds to rectify it. Fail to comply, and I will explode your face with cats. No, I don’t know what that means. But it sounds bad, doesn’t it?
Great thought from Hindmarch on control, writing, and superstition.
Eddy Webb points out: “Free Time Is Not Free, Dick Goblins.” I might’ve added the “dick goblins” part. But it’s what he meant. Trust me. I know Eddy Webb. Intimately.
That is all.