January 28, 2007

It’s been a phenomenally beautiful weekend here in Seattle. Cold, yes, but the sky is the deepest shade of blue, the sun is bright and the skies are radiant with a clarity that showcases the snow-dolloped mountains on every horizon.

It’s true that living in the Northwest can sometimes make you feel as though it’s only a matter of time until everyone in the area biologically evolves to sport a fleshy pair of gills and an umbrellalike bony protuberance extending from their heads, but I’ll tell you, it certainly gives you a nearly rabid appreciation for the kind of weather we had today and yesterday.

(I realize this is sort of like saying that if someone is stabbing you in the eye with a sharpened pencil for the majority of the year, those days that are pencil-free are fucking awesome.)

We ended up going out to dinner on Friday night instead of seeing a movie, and although a three-hour meal that included appetizers and dessert didn’t really mesh with the whole It’s Not a Diet It’s a Lifestyle Change thing, I figured, how many times per year do I really have the opportunity to sit in a nice restaurant and not worry about the amount of applesauce my dining companion is smearing on his shirt? Those chances are few and far between, my friends, and it would take a much stronger constitution than what I currently possess to eschew the chocolate brioche bread pudding (which, by the way, was so delicious it made my eyes roll back in my head. Twice).

The restaurant we went to was the Yarrow Bay Grill, which I’ve always liked, and I have a $25 gift certificate that can be used there or at the more-casual Beach Cafe. If you live in the area and think you might be able to use the gift card by February 4 (when it expires), leave me a comment and I’ll mail it to you.

Also! I need you to settle a disagreement between JB and I: how much are you supposed to tip a valet, the guy who brings your car around? Valet service at Yarrow Bay is $5, and JB thinks you should tip another five on top of that. I say one dollar. There’s also a jug to drop in gratuities at the end of the $8 carwash, where someone wipes off your car (after someone hoses your car down before you go into the automated whatsit), and I think a good tip for that would be at least two dollars, but JB says one dollar at most. He thinks a valet should be tipped more for taking care of your multi-thousand-dollar-car, I think driving a car twenty feet out of a parking lot is definitely worth less than helping get your car cleaned. Help! We need a tipping Sherpa.

Lastly, some photos from yesterday:

Look, Cat isn’t always evil. Here she is carefully observing the boy for a moment of weakness so she can devour his soft pink flesh starting with the nose to make sure he stays safe near the street.

Hopefully avoiding dogshit, but probably not.

My boy, Suspicious McPunkface.

We took Riley to the farm yesterday afternoon, here we are peering at an unseen cow.

JB and Riley looking at rabbits.

Do not fuck with this chicken. It will cutchew.

Riley learned about the moon this weekend, he loves to point and say “Mmmah!” or “Moo!”.


JB swinging Riley back and forth, and a slow shutter speed.

I promise JB’s not really whipping Riley around in a circle. Really.

Nor is JB actually throwing him this high in the — well, actually, yes he is. It’s okay though, Cat was nearby so she could have provided a semi-soft landing if necessary.

January 25, 2007

So you want to hear about Cat, do you? Let me tell you about Cat: I am about one more cat-yowl away from shoving her in the microwave and turning it to the “Repulsive Meat-Gobbet Explosion of Fur-Coated Internal Organs” setting.

She’s always been a vocal, demanding, bitchy cat, but lately it’s like her mission on this earth is to 1) trip and kill her owners so she can feast on our tender, accessible flesh, 2) howl at top volume to be either let in or let out, 285728103 times per night, and 3) wake up Riley by standing outside his room, pawing at the doorknob (I am not even making this up), and yowling over and over until one of us scurries down the hallway hissing obscenities, picks her up by the scruff of her neck, and eighty-sixes her obnoxious ass outside. Where she immediately starts yelling at the front door again.

We have this bell hanging from the front doorknob, and for a long time she would reach up and ring it when she wanted out. I thought it was a cute trick, except for the part where I found myself instantly, mindlessly rising from the couch and heading for the door each time I heard the bell tinkling. It’s kind of disturbing when your cat uses Pavlovian conditioning on you in order to develop involuntary reflexes that work in her favor, you know?

But she doesn’t do the bell thing any more, now she just yells. All the time with the yowling. And as some of you know, there’s nothing quite like having something threaten the sleep of your small child. It solicits a sort of wartime response, an I-wouldn’t-normally-stab-you-with-this-bayonet-but-we-are-in-trying-circumstances kind of visceral reaction, and just because my tormentor has the comprehension skills of a cantaloupe doesn’t mean it doesn’t feel good to cuss her right the hell out.

Every night, I unleash a festive string of expletives at Cat. I tell her if she doesn’t quit yowling I’m going to rip her head off and shit down her neck. I tell her I fucking hate all cats and I think the government should explore using their carcasses as alternative fuel sources. I tell her to fucking shut her fucking cat-hole for fucking fuck’s sake (may I remind you my innocent child is asleep at this time so it’s okay to use questionable terms such as, you know, “cat-hole”) or I’m going to beat her ass like a dusty rug, and if that doesn’t work, I get out a plastic bag and give it a good shake because that always scares the crap out of her and ha ha haaaa, you should see her try and run on hardwood floors.

On the off chance this wasn’t quite what you meant when you said you wanted an update on Cat, let me assure you she’s the picture of robust good health, she cuddles with JB on the couch every night, and in the morning I often find her curled against my feet. Oh, I love Cat, despite her many, many flaws.

You know what – I bet she’s still getting revenge on me for this:


It’s another low-key weekend ahead for us. Saturday I think I’ll be cleaning and hen-pecking JB to help me clean, and Sunday JB’s parents are coming to visit. JB has an Alki dive planned, and I have a freelance project to finish and submit. Oh, and tomorrow night is the once-every-two-months “parents night” at our daycare, so we can go on a DATE. Woo! I’m trying to decide: dinner or a movie? Has anyone seen Children of Men and thinks we should definitely see that (note: I am a rabid fan of dystopian movies, plus Clive Owen is some tasty manbeef, is he not) — or some different movie? Or should we go to a restaurant where, praise jebus, someone else does the cooking and cleanup?

And here’s the same question as I always ask: what are YOU doing this weekend? I don’t know if I say it enough, but I love hearing your answers.

Lastly, the suctopus:


Which reminds me, go check out my enormous (partial) list of the books you recommended a while back!

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