It’s not a cigar, or a famous way to die……

I give you…..The Cuban Special:

1oz light rum
1oz cointreau or Clement Creole Shrubb or other orange liquer
1oz lime juice
1/2oz pineapple juice

Put it all in a shaker with ice and shake the hell out of it. Don’t forget the cap to the shaker, because pineapple juice is sticky. 🙂 Pour the whole thing into a chilled (or not) martini looking glass, you know, fancy.
cubanspecial

Alright, two notes on this one:
1) increase the pineapple juice to 1oz, because, to quote Paul (AtH’s bitch) “rum drinks are supposed to be sweet and stickayyyy”
2)This shit will fuck you up quick. No wonder Cubans put up with so much shit from their leader, they’ve got drinks like this.
**Note: without the pineapple juice, this thing is called a… Read More Cuban Sidecar…..and either way, it is muthafuckin’ good**
**Another Note: go with the Creole Shrubb. It’s not cheap, but it is well worth the cost, and it will go slow. Yum**

Let the mixed drinking begin!!

Dark and Stormy
1-2 slices of ginger, optional
2 oz dark rum
1/2 tbsp sugar syrup/cane syrup
4 oz ginger beer
2 lime wedges

Fill an old-fashioned glass with ice and add the fresh ginger slices. Add the rum and sugar syrup, stir. Top with ginger beer. Squeeze the lime wedges over the drink and drop them in.
darkandstormy1

*** It is yummy, I will have two and then move on to something else with rum***

I’m so serious about this, people…….

Keypads at atms, grocery stores and worst of all, gas stations* are like undiluted layer upon layer human filth. Like….sorta like…..human grime bouillon cubes. Concentrated Nasty.

*I say gas stations are the worst only because I KNOW what people do when they’re alone in the car on their way to or from somewhere: they pick and scratch and touch and……ewwwwwwww. Then they look down and discover they’re out of gas. And you know how this story progresses…..from crotch scratchin’ to keypad punchin’. Fucking Disgusting. Oh, and then you’re encouraged to purchase some sort of snack from the gas station which you proceed to hork down with your newly plagued-up fingers as you continue your trip to wherever. Don’t forget to purchase something you’re tempted to lick your fingers after eating…..you know, like Doritos or some shit like that.

Oft Overlooked in the Shadow of Public Restrooms…….

I realized tonight as I punched in my zipcode, that if any of y’all have issues with ‘germs’ and public places, y’all need to be focused a little more on those keypads that you punch in your info/choices with at gas stations, and atms. Fucking things are CESSPOOLS of germs.
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You KNOW what people do with their hands while they’re alone in the car; they pick at things (noses, ears, eye-crusties, scabs, acne, whatever), they scratch at shit (armpits, head, crotch, eczema, pimples, whatever)….and then they get their crotch pickin’ scab scratchin’ fingers out and punch away at those keypads. The same one you’re reaching for. IT’S DISGUSTING, when you think about it, really think about it.
I have two words for this dilemma: Chlorox Wipes. And those two words came close at the heels of my first two: gag-vomit, which was a knee jerk reaction to my first word: Plague*
Let this be a warning. Stay alive, people, wipe it down.
bruegheldeath

*a contagious disease that spreads rapidly and kills many people. People like you.

Who the hell knew?

I just discovered the small market below our hospital is the “Royal Food Market”. They stock an amazing variety of Russian, Persian and other Eastern European foods. Fresh cheeses (something called ‘farmers cheese’?), a huge choice of smoked fish, a huge selection of odd meats (gypsy bacon??) along with head cheese (never seen that up close and personal before), a small selection of very fresh looking veggies and bins of fresh nuts and dried fruits, pickled EVERYTHING, and my personal favorite; Army Brand Chopped Pork Pattie Loaf. I am not joking….
armybrand
It’s from Poland.
Mmmmmm. Pork.
Herring, mackerel, sardines, persian tea, odd flavored preserves, fresh baklava, fresh dolmas, lamb tongue.
Hmmmm. May require a return trip, or several.

Still plugging away at it….

Art took Friday off so we could do stuff around here together (awwwww, how sweet). We slept in late, got a visit from a neighbor about a stray goat (the neighbor probably now thinks we’re the epitome of lazy…Friday at 11am and Art answers the door in his robe with bed-head). We eventually got up and I made waffles, and we took the dogs out to run the pastures, always good entertainment. Well, I took the dogs out to run the pastures, Art eventually joined me. Then we got busy with the garden in front of the barn that we started last weekend.
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We needed extra stuff from the hardware store, but it got done…
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The dogs really really like it when either, or both, of us stay home on a weekday
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They all got marrow bones, and took turns stealing and guarding them while we worked at the gardening. A good time was had by all.
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After all the planting, I went to go practice obedience with Helen and her dogs at a park in Livermore. Dretti was wonderful. Then Art and I met up for dinner and a movie. FYI? Watchmen was about 2 hours too long. Seriously. And I could have done without the 5 minutes of porn at the half-way point. Just seemed…..not appropriate.
Plants will go in tomorrow, after I go to Berkeley to get more cactus/succuant planting mix. Today was pretty crappy, weather wise. It was cold and, as Art describes it, bitter. I cleaned the barn whilst AtH ran errands. When he got home, we attacked the back yard. Art mowed, I killed two roses (hopefully). No joke, I went completely Ted Nuggent on their asses. If they survive the pruning I gave them, they will have earned their places in my garden.
That is all.

Get a hobby

This is what I do with Andretti;
happyjumpdretti45
27inches of fun.

over
We call it “Over!”

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Suspended animation.

jumpingdretti45yr
First we tell him “over”, he goes over the jump. Then we tell him “take it”, and he grabs the dumbell, then we tell him “over” and he brings the dumbell back over the jump.

dumbelljumpdretti
Dumbell fun, Take It and Over, together!

overleaving
Andretti is awesome wicked smart, coming and going.
You should see him take these at speed (like an agility course, it’s amazing)

We train a lot of Open stuff, even though we haven’t gotten a leg in Novice yet. He likes the open stuff much better than stupid boring heeling and recalls. He loves his articles and gloves (selective retrieving) He’s only competed once in Obedience so far, he broke his down-stay. By a fraction of a second. But it was enough to No Score him for the entire run. He’s got all of his Rally titles, he needs two legs left to finish his Rally Excellent title.

So yeah, this is what I do with The Andretti every Monday night. I hope to have his CD title in Obedience by the end of this year, then go on to Open, and eventually Utility. I think there’s only ever been, like, a handful of Utility greyhounds. That would be so cool. All the dogs who do well in obedience are like, Border collies, Golden Retrievers, Shelties, blah blah blah. But I got a dog that DOESN’T live to please me, so getting those titles will be extra sweet, cuz damn, it’s a lot of time, work and money. But hey, who’s hobby isn’t?

Oh, and by the way, there are perfectly practical applications for every piece of obedience work he’s mastered. He can back up on command when we’re in a store and the turning is too tight, he sits and down stays for as long as I want him to where ever I take him, he heels tight to my leg in crowds. He stands like a statue while I do whatever I need to do in a store, or he will sit or down stay in a corner while I do whatever. He can pivot left and right 360 degrees without moving a rear foot, for when there’s no room to turn around somewhere. He can jump over fences/barriers that I clamber or step over, on command, no need to find a gate or someplace he can squeeze thru. He heels extra slow or extra fast right next to my leg when I ask him to, great for street crossings and crowds. He doesn’t pull on the leash, he sits when we stop moving (hello, traffic lights/crosswalks) He pivots left or right tight to my leg, again, great in crowds. He “takes it” when I hand him something, and will deliver it to someone else. Hello….beer? Duh. It’s not all about competition, it’s about having a reliable, safe and useful Andretti! Because of his awesome obedience skillz, he is usually welcome in every store I go into, and has won over many dog hesitant shop owners. He has been asked to return by countless proprietors, and he’s completely wonderful with strangers and children handling him. He makes me very proud, he is such a wonderfully tempered and obedient boy. He is my heart.

Experiment update:

It has been extended for the next 3 weeks, to make one month total.
andrettispringtime

So far:

No Gas. This is amazing. No stinking bedroom in the morning, no stench in the living room in the evening, no stench from under my desk at work (where Andretti resides every day), no airing out the Jeep/van/truck on any given trip with the dogs, no stench in the livingroom in the evenings, D-Square has not stretch-farted in a week. Q hasn’t been booted off the bed in a week. Andretti has not cleared a room in a week. The office has been dog-fart free for a week.

Pooping once a day, maybe twice: Their intake far exceeds their output. They are crapping once or twice a day, at most. And what comes out of Dretti no longer qualifies as toxic waste, nor does it take two poo-bags to pick up. A couple of rabbit like pellets and that’s it. I know this is disgusting, but the volume of poo has been cut by 3/4, and while disgusting, this is a good good thing. And pretty interesting. It seems that they process and utilize the raw food much more efficiently than kibble. The volume of crap with kibble is, well, voluminous.

Super soft coat: both D-Square in particular has developed a super velvet soft coat in the past week. Dretti still feels the same, and Q is like rubbing velvet the wrong direction. We’ll see how that pans out.
sunsetspringq
Overall, I’m really really impressed. I’ve added organ meat (chicken liver, gizzard, hearts and lamb hearts) to the mix. I’ve also added regular fat content cottage cheese and regular fat plain yogurt to the veggie and egg mix. It’s getting easier, a little. But still not as simple as scooping out of a bag. 🙂 I’ve found a co-op where I can get human grade meat in bulk for really good prices. Not just for the dogs is what I’m thinking. 😉

We’ll go week by week, and see if this isn’t just a phase I’m going thru. I’m thinking I like this, and the dogs seem much happier with their meals. Dretti (lard-ass) has lost 2 lb, D-Square is maintaining her feather-weight but putting on a bit of muscle, Q is static)

Any input, minus “Watch out for salmonella” would be well received. BTW, cost is much lower than kibble and canned. I’m getting chicken quarters for less than a dollar a pound (they get about a pound each per day), and the rest of the mix (veggies, egg and dairy) is chump change. The labor to make meals is the biggest complaint so far.
poppydeespring2009

my powers are growing!!!!

Not only did Art mow the backyard, he mowed the sideyard/pasture AND found time to come over and dig out my new garden bed in front of the barn office. It will be planted with succulants and a rose or two. It’s going to be stunning!!!! Yay Art! Let me tell you all…..the best part about life with Art…..is life WITH Art. He’s awesome.

What we did today:
thewayweweremarch8
This is the way it was, has been, since we moved in. Weeds, now dead from the judicial application of round-up, a healthy serving of cat crap (big litterbox basicly) and a lot of big chunks of cement. Oh, and pillbugs and earwigs. And spiders. Note my fabulous potting bench. I love that thing.

Art rototilled and dug and raked. He used the sawzall! And cut things, to exacting sizes! He did stop when he started considering trying to recut something to within a half an inch of where it needed to be. “Forget it” he said, “I’ll just fuck that up”. I trust his judgement on that one. He drilled HUGE holes in things, and then pounded GIGANTIC nails into the holes. Like, railroad size nails. I was impressed.
someofthetools

He wore his stealth camo poofy pocket pants. I hardly knew where he was at any given point in time, he blended in so well. I was, like….”Art, where are you?” and he would pop up out of nowhere and say “Right here baby” and I’d be all, like, “Woah, those pants really work. I didn’t even see you there!” and he would be all, like “See, they’re not just fashion, baby, they’re FUNCTION” Like I said, I was impressed.
camopantsinthegarden

We only got so far before it got mother-ass-cold and we had to quit. Besides, we didn’t have all the parts we needed to finish the framing. I need to get more cactus/succulent dirt as well. Drainage will be key. I plan to plant succulents and a cactus or two (specimen plantings that would look really really good there.) I want to put in a rose on the corner. I know that doesn’t really go with the drought tolerant plantings I have planned, but it will work. I’m also in the process of filling two terra cotta strawberry pots with a variety of succulents.

After the planting is done, I’d like to work on a different window frame for that hideous office window. Something in and old, weathered wood framing. Hopefully we can get this done by next weekend.
succulantproject