Friday, April 27, 2012

Toys for the half-blind cat.

Cat television.

Normally, not liking to tempt fate, my recycling bin sits on that chair. This means Miss Amy has to sit on the ground to stare up at Fergie and Freddie. Freddie, being the bad ass gerbil he is, likes to stick his tail out of the cage at her and wiggle it. Nooo sense of self-preservation in those two. I'm not sure Amy has fine enough detail to see a wiggling tail, but she can see, smell, and hear the gerbils for sure. When I came in from taking out the recycling, this is how I found her. What you can't see is on the other side of the bars; a suicidal brave Fergie chittering at her.

I've been trying various toys as she's starting to feel secure enough in her new home to get playful in the mornings. (Afternoons and evenings being serious nap time, thankyouverymuch.) First was a bright sort of cage-ball with a birdie inside with feathers that chirps when it moves. For the most part she seems pretty unimpressed with this. She can see it, its certainly big enough, but I suspect it's too big for her way to bother with.

The next attempt was a long fuzzy fake tail with the tail splitting into three with feathers at the end, attached to a wand. This, at first, scared the beejeebers out of her. She didn't want anything to do with it! So I tucked the wand under the arm of the futon and left it for her to get used to. Her answer was the next night she pounced on the feathers, ripped them out of the tail and rolled around on them. I think that's a semi-success. She will rub against the fake fur now and then in passing, but she's shown no inclination to play with it in the days since.

The laser pointer was a great disaster, the light is too small for her to see. So all she sees is the movement of my hand, which confuses her. "Why are you gesturing like that at the floor?" I'll probably remember to buy a flashlight, sooner or later, and will try that as it'll have a wider beam.

The most successful, however, is a parrot toy. Having had bunnies, I have no problems buying across the species lines. I've found parrot toys tend to survive the enthusiastic rabbit longest. (Read : Scout, supreme destructo bun) I found one that's bright wood blocks, wrapped in cheerful paper, with bits of robe tied in rough knots and wooden balls between. There's a bunch of fuzzed rope at the end and a bell. I put it on her cat tree (Which she mostly uses as a way to groom my hair when I'm on the computer.) and she ignored it for a day. I was batting at it this morning and its like a light bulb went on and she POUNCED. Its big enough, and bright enough, that she can see it no matter how fast she gets it swinging. It makes NOISE, so she can triangulate when she loses track (I'm not actually sure how bad her eyesight is. The rope means she can get a satisfying BITE in, as well as grab it with claws and hang on. I wasn't sure my jury-rigged attachment would hold her grabbing it with her forepaws, sinking teeth in and jumping up with rear paws to swing back and forth -- but surprisingly, it did. (I am, however, going to buy some hardware to make a better connection :D )  This thing has become her ENEMY. She goes past it and gives it a swat every time.. and every time it has the nerve to swat her right back in the tail! Oh, this toy will DIE! .. So far, however, she's much less destructive than a parrot OR a rabbit so I suspect this toy will be around quite a while yet..

I suppose I shouldn't forget every cat's favourite of wiggling toes under a blanket .. but the toy doesn't seem to have the same long term stamina for the game as the cat does.. so its not the best toy. Even if it does have comfy legs to lie on for snoozing.

I suspect, as her eye sight gets worse and worse, it will get more and more challenging to get her interactive toys. She doesn't seem to care about catnip, so I'm not sure smell is helpful. She's a young, healthy cat, she's going to have lots of energy for years yet. I suspect we'll learn together! :)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

[Bunny Fiction] Weasley's Quest for Beer.

Weasley sighed a very big bunny sigh. His humom wouldn't let him play the tuba. She kept using silly excuses like he didn't have thumbs, he didn't have big enough lungs, the loud noise if he did manage to play would hurt his ears, if it fell on him he'd be squished flat and a bunch of other words of human illogic. He felt it was quite unfair that humans had the thumbs so they got to make the rules. If HE could plant kale, he'd .. well, he'd probably still have humans about because he couldn't be bothered to do much in the way of gardening, but it was the principal of the matter here!

It was a football weekend so he needed beer. He also wanted some company, but his BFF (Bestest Fur Friend) Mickey was apparently grounded. Something to do with not eating his dinner due to football overload or something. His humom was being very silly. Almost as silly as Weasley's humom got whenever he tried to help trim the quilts. Was it his fault he couldn't be bothered to wait until his huMom got finished with them? Actually, she seemed to get even crankier when she had just declared "all done!" in her tired-happy voice. Humans, go fig.

Sneaking out his netbook, Weasley tapped out a message to Harrington. Weasley had kind of wanted a tablet PC, but they weren't very blind bunny friendly. The netbook he'd acquired with the help of the bunderground network had braille on the keys, tablets were just screens; he'd have to use the voice function and he was fairly sure his humom would get suspicious of THAT. Humans were always sticking their noses in at the most inconvienent times.  The IM pinged back that Harrington was taking a nap at the moment. Weasley sighed and typed back to Hannah asking if she'd release her mate for some beer tasting.

Hannah said while *normally* she'd be thrilled to kick him out for a couple days, after the trouble he'd gotten into during the superbowl their humom was keeping extra eyes on them. They couldn't sneak out for more than the duration of an extra long nap. Besides, it was his turn to cover for *her* so if Weasley felt like going to a flower show..

The angora sighed again. While he did like nibbling on the roses as much as the next bun, he really wanted to go find some beer. So, he thanks Hannah and said maybe next week. He added for her to give Harrington a nose bonk for him. She cheerfully agreed and signed off.

He complained to Mickey for a few messages until Mr Mick suggested he ask Speedy. He wasn't sure if the English version of beer would be as strange as the English version of football, but cultural exchange was a good thing? Besides, he could always insist Speedy come stateside. So, getting Speedy's information, Weasley fired off an email to the English bun.

With a stretch and a yawn, Weasley tucked his netbook back under his bed and hopped to where the sunbeam should be at this time. The warmth of the sun felt good on his joints and fur and he no longer even had to angle his face away from the window. A few nose wriggles on the way confirmed that his humom hadn't accidently forgotten the time and put out his dinner a few hours early. A good long stretch and he was occupying as much floor space as a bun could and was soon quietly snoring.

* * *

Upon waking he hopped into his room, following the walls since they tended not to move, unlike the two foots. He nommed on some hay thoughtfully before digging out his netbook once more. Speedy had emailed back (apparently it was dinner time there!) saying he didn't think he was old enough to drink beer yet. He also apologized most profusely, but he was pretty sure his Mum had been wondering where he kept disappearing to so he wanted to spend some extra time with her so she didn't feel neglected. Oh, and he was pretty sure he'd almost found the magic gate in the garden that all the books talked about.

Weasley wasn't sure what was with magic gates and gardens, but he sat up and licked his paws to groom his face thoughtfully. Well, when you're scraping the bottom of the barrel.. A third, and he hoped it was his final, sigh and he contacted the furry ninja brothers. He wasn't sure they even liked beer but.. The reply was almost instant that they'd love to play guide and they were on their way.

Weasley perked up. The brothers were pretty fun, even if they were crazy and hyperactive. It could be worse.. they could be cats.  He triple checked his humom was busy with her latest UFO and made his way to the magic closet. The squeeking within revealed the gerbils had arrived before him. Well, they DID tend to do things at top speed. Weasley nudged open the door and hopped in.

"You sure your human won't miss you?" Squeeked Freddie while Fergie looked at his tail like it was some sort of new and startling creation.

"Naw. She'll just think I'm napping. What about your humom?" Weasley asked.

The brothers giggled, "She'll just think we're sleeping. She loses track of time all the time, rarely even knows what day it is.. so if we disappeared for three days she'd probably only notice because she was dumping more water outta the bottle when she cleans it."

"Humans are rather scatterbrained." Weasley agreed. "So where to?"

The brothers chirped and cheeped at each other before turning back to lagomorphic, "Well, the least we can do is introduce you to some *Canadian* beer.. Its much better than that American stuff."

Weasley huffed. "Macro brews are bad all over. Canadian macrobrew may be better than American, but its still pretty bad!"

Freddie nodded his little grey head, whiskers bouncing, "I don't disagree my rabbit brother!" He nudged Weasley into the centre of the closet and checked the door was closed before the two started their teleportation dance.

* * *

The smell of yeasty beer greeted Weasley's nose on arrival. The brothers chittered and promised to check for humans. They were quickly back and said it was safe for him to come out. "This is a restaurant our human likes. We just have to be careful, the two foots who run this place don't leave a crumb outta place .. and would probably do something mean to us if they saw us!"

Fergie nodded solemnly, "Ship tight, ship clean!" he chirped.

Freddie bounced off while the blonde Fergie bounded at a much slower pace, squeeking softly so Weasley could follow him in this unfamilar place. The gerbil seemed to prefer to run in the middle of the rooms and corridors, which made Weasley rather nervous. "Where are we going?" The rabbit finally asked.

"Tasting room!" Freddie called from up ahead. "They make their own ales and beers, and there's a TV back here."

"Not that there's much on at ten in the morning." Fergie grumped. "Just news and kids shows. Though, the CBC ones are o.k."

Weasley nodded like he had the slightest idea of what the rodent was talking about. He stopped when the guiding chirps became stationary. His ears swivelled and his nose twitched a mile a minute while he got used to the new room.

"Here," Fergie said, nudging at Weasley with his nose. He lead him over to what was probably a step stool or something, "You can eat off this. Can't have beer without nachos, right?"

"Er, right." Weasley agreed. He was wondering if he should really be drinking at ten AM. It was afternoon to him, but not here.. these time zone things were kinda confusing. Humans seemed to just create things for the sole purpose of confusing rabbits and other sensible creatures.

The brothers ran all over, causing strange thumps, clatters, clinks and splashes. Scittering noises, rattles, bumps and wallops followed in all sorts of strange order. Finally the two seemed happy and pushed a plate over and then some salad dressing bowls that had been repurposed.

"Okay, the nachos are here," Freddie said, Fergie obliging chirping to echo-locate for the rabbit, "And here's a golden pale ale, and here's a bitter, and here's a lager.." as he listed off the drinks and foods, Fergie scurried to the item in question and chirped so Weasley would know what was where. Fortunately he had a very good memory because the gerbils had fetched up quite the feast.

The three boys nibbled, nommed, slurped and drank their way through everything. Weasley was rather surprised by the amount two small desert mice could ingest! He wasn't quite sure where the were putting it all.. surely he couldn't have been drinking all that alcohol himself..

He offered to help clean up, but the giggling gerbils seemed perfectly happy to call in some guinea pig friends of theirs who would work for comic books. It was a bit more of a stagger than a hop back to the closet. And then they guided him, a gerbil pushing on each of his front legs, to an early evening sunset beam, where he fell, er, flopped. He wasn't quite sure he wasn't snoring before his head hit the carpet.

The gerbils looked at each other and then the comatose rabbit and shook their heads. Well, at least they'd all had fun.. and Cynthia-human sure did know how to make good home made nacho chips and ale! With giggles and burps they dashed back to the closet. As they ducked under the door they heard Weasley's human asking if he'd spent the whole day sleeping in sunbeams, and it must be nice to just sit around all the time and a bunch of other human misconceptions verbalized.

Freddie just shook his head. If humans only knew..

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

State of the Cat update.

We have been to the vet and we have survived. (Most importantly, the vet survived.)

It used to take me 15 to 20 minutes to carrol Scout or Sage .. Amy? About twenty seconds. Sorry, Mr Mick, I have found one item of cat superiority!

Anyways, it turns out Miss Amy has no blood vessels on the back of the retina. Apparently an uncommon, but not unheard of, condition in cats. The vet said she could refer me to an animal opthomology specialist if I wanted to know the fine details of her vision, but I said no, I have a good enough idea. She can see the movement of anything over an inch in radius, she can focus well enough if she sits still and waits for her irises to constrict or dilate.

She was fairly well behaved at the vet, all things considered. To get her eyes peered into she got bunny-it-ooed.. er, catitooed? .. wrapped in a towel,. the lights turned out and bright things shone in her eyes. She was NOT a happy cat! As soon as she was released from the towel she lept off the counter to my shoulder. This is a process I used to get, in the very same exam room!, from Scout Bunny. However, Scout Bunny was a 2.2 POUND rabbit, Miss Amy cat is a 6.7 KILOGRAM cat. (12 pounds, 57 oz for my American friends.) My shoulder wasn't so happy. My spine was less happy at the sudden telescoping. She however just made pathetic mewling noises, so I snuggled and pet her until all was forgiven (a process that took less than two minutes, she's a frighteningly good natured cat) and then she got something cold stuck in an uncomfortable place for a tempreture check. If looks could kill... :D

She got a vaccine, dewormed, a bit of grooming and then taken into the back for her claw trimming. (Since they have six sets of hands, professional grade equipment and masochistic tendancies.) Holy crap, can my cat YOWL! The receptionist's comment was "Yup, she's a calico."  You'd think they were pulling her claws out, not just carefully trimming them. She got delivered back to me and cuddled for a bit before I passed her back to the tech so I could pay -- and the tech got a lick on the chin. ("She is the most forgiving cat - ever!")

Other wise, she's a healthy, if a little overweight (6.7 kgs instead of 5.5 kgs), probably closer to two years old than one, kitty cat.

Once back home, she used the litterbox, and is now stretched out in front of the patio window shooting me dirty looks every once in a while. If she were a rabbit, there would be some definite thumping going on around here!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

[Bunny Fiction] Bunnies and Football.

Speedy had been reading Mr Mick's blog for a while now. Oh, sure, his human claimed it as her's, but all bunnies knew who was really in charge. He liked football, Speedy liked football, so Speedy decided to invite Mr Mick around for tea.

Of course, bunny tea was a bit different than the human concept. Instead of actual tea it was water with bits of cress and kale shredded in it, and instead of cucumber sandwiches it was just the cucumber.

Speedy didn't quite understand how this closet transport thing worked. He'd grilled Gus about it, Gus had said you just go into a closet, close the door, decide where you want to be and you open the door and you're there. It didn't sound very sensible, but apparently its what worked.

And so, he met Mr Mick at the closet by the living room and the two had made inroads on the snacks and bunny tea. They were nibbling on a few craisins when Speedy thought to ask if Mr Mick was interested in seeing a proper English football game, after all, the closet could take them there, couldn't it?

Mr Mick thought this a wonderful idea. He knew the London Olympics would have football, no matter what his silly momma said. And he was going to the Olypics, no matter what his silly momma said. A preview of the show sounded good to him!

So, Speedy led Mr Mick back to the closet, they closed the door, and off they went! Speedy had a brief wonder if they should have left a note for his mum so she wouldn't worry..

* * *

The stadium was loud and full of lots of yummy smells. The closet they arrived in smelled like stale beer, vomit and disinfectant. Gagging, the two bunboys fled out onto the concourse. They happily dodged between feets and legs as humans gabbered on amongst themselves. "Oi, is that a rabbit?" one voice asked. The two paused behind a trash bin to hear the answer of "A rabbit? At a football match? Have you already had a few?"  Giggling to themselves, the rabbits hopped on.

"C'mon, we want centre pitch!" Speedy explained as he wound their way down and around. It was probably easier to take the stairs, but he'd found humans had a bad habit of trying to catch you if you went that route. So, they ducked under the seats and hopped down the levels. Mr Mick, being bigger than him had an easier time with the getting down of the levels, but he had to be careful or his tail would wump into the seat.

The two eventually stopped at the bottom and wiggled under the guard bars to hop down to the green. "This is real grass!" Mr Mick exclaimed, quite astonished. He leaned forward to take a nibble.

"Well, of course!" Speedy replied, a bit indignant. "What else would they play football on?"

"Oh.. We have this stuff.." Mr Mick paused, not quite sure how to explain it. "Oh! You know that crap humans put in their egg baskets at easter?"

Speedy nodded. His mum had never let him play with any, but he'd seen it on the internet.

"Well, they cut it up really short and they stick it all over the ground to look like grass." Mr Mick explained.

Speedy stared at him wide-eyed, "WHY?" he finally asked.

Mr Mick snorted and tossed his head, loppy ears flopping every which way. "Humans are weird. They think grass is too much work or something."

Speedy shook his head in amazement. Why would anything be too much work for a good football match up?

"Daddy! There's bunnies on the pitch!" a small voice blurted.

"Perhaps they're hungry." The dad humoured, not even looking at where the little boy pointed.

"Think they'd like some crisps?" the little boy asked

"I don't think crisps would be good for bunnies." The dad answered absently.

"Crisps?" Mr Mick asked.

Speedy, having spent a great deal of time on the internet, liked to think he was quite proficient in translating English to American. "Potato chips," he explained.

"Oh." Mr Mick processed that. "I don't think they're good for humans, either."

The two snorted their amusement.

"Oh! Oh! Arsenol's coming on!" Speedy sat up on his back legs, front paws wiggling in excitement. "They're the good guys. They're playing the 'Spurs, that's the Hotspurs, and the 'Spurs are the bad guys!" Speedy paused, "Oh! I should have brought my scarf, what's football without a scarf?"

Mick wasn't sure what scarfs and football had in common, but he was happy to watch the men jog out onto the field. His bunny brow starting to wrinkle in confusion. They weren't wearing a lot of padding; they weren't even wearing helmets!

His confusion grew as the start of the game progressed. The only familiar thing was the referee tossing the coin, even if the coin was a funny shape and colour. "This isn't football, its soccer!" Mick finally declared.

Speedy blinked at his new friend, "Its only soccer in America!" He countered, "Ohhh, look," he said, "Arsenol got the ball back and their new kicker is all lined up!"

Mick sneezed, "I don't understand this at all!"

"Oh." Speedy thought a moment, "Okay, well, the whole point is to get the ball in the net.."

"I know THAT much!" Mr Mick complained. He wasn't stupid!

"I know, I know, but Mum always said, start at the top." Speedy worked his way through the rule sets of English football, instbetween exclaimations of good plays and cheering.

Mr Mick watched the very long first half, a drizzle starting to come down by the time half-time was called. "I'm not sure if I like it or not." Mr Mick finally said as the two ducked under the seats, Speedy filching a box of chips that had been carefully left under a seat for its protection. Mr Mick licked his chops at the unusual way of preparing french fries, but he decided it would do.

"It takes some getting used to," Speedy agreed, "Its more fun than Cricket, anyway!"

Mick chewed thoughtfully, "What's Cricket?"

"BORING!" Speedy replied forceably. "They hit a ball, they run back and forth, they stand around a lot. Its all very boring."

Mr Mick thought soccer a bit unexciting without all the loud crashing of bodies and victory dances, he wasn't sure he wanted to watch anything MORE boring.  The two ate the chips until they were licking vinegar off their whiskers and sneezing at the acrid smell.

The second half started up and the two decided to stay under the seats where they'd not get rained on. Mr Mick commented at least it wasn't snow.

"Snow?" Speedy spluttered, "Why would people watch sports in snow?!"

Mr Mick gave a mischevious bunny smirk, bum wiggling, "Canadians play IN snow. They play this game called 'hockey', where they run all around on top of snow, slipping and sliding everywhere, chasing after a little black thing and hitting each other with fists and sticks."

Speedy stared at the lop-eared rabbit, not sure if he was getting his tail pulled or not, but Mr Mick seemed awfully earnest about it. "Canadians are crazy." The smudge nosed rabbit finally said.

"Oh, well, yes. But we've all known that for years."

The two went back to the match and Speedy trying to explain strategy he didn't really much understand himself. The humans were all very happy because their 'good guys' were winning, or at least, not losing, or something.

At the end of the match, full of stolen chips, soda and some peanuts, the two wiggled their way back to the closet. "I think I'll go straight home, if you don't mind.. I really need a nap." Mick said, giving Speedy a nose bonk.

Speedy nodded and let out a long yawn, "Oh, yes, me too. Watching football is an awful lot of work!"  He returned the nose bonk and told his friend that he could have first crack at the closet.

Mr Mick half hopped in and turned back, "Do you think me'n'my friends could come back for the Olympics?"

Speedy gave a minature happy bounce, "Of course! I know all the places that are showing things. I would love to meet your friends! Maybe we could get my Mum to make them all scarves!"

Mr Mick wiggled his bum, "I've always kind of wanted a scarf." he agreed as he headed into the stinky room, already thinking of his warm bed and home.

Speedy waited till the scent of Mick was gone before he enterted the closet and closed the door, thinking of his own warm den and bed. It been a very long day and he'd eaten many things he probably shouldn't have.. his Mum was probably going to be all fussy that he was too full to eat his dinner. He yawned as he hopped out of his closet at home. But humans always seemed to be fussing about one thing or another..

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Meet The Cat.

She's a rabbit, Mick.. She's just kind of funny looking for a rabbit. She's already bossing me around, threatening to chew on the laptop cord and has marked everything in the apartment (including me) as her's. She's just a little off-breed.. Y'know, one of those meat eating, short eared, long tailed rabbits. (I will point out, Scout Bunny loved eating fatty meat.. Not that I intentionally ever gave her any!)

A lady advertised a cat that her daughter had somehow spontaneously become allergic to. I think most of us who have even worked the fringes of rescue know that means "The pet has become too much work" or "We're bored with the pet" or something along those lines. I ignored it, I can't rescue every animal that comes along after all. (No, conscience, I really can't.)  But, I got worried.. and after a few days, inquired. Yeah, cat's still available.

Okay. I decided I'd go meet her. She's small, she's skinny, she's a little skittish.. she came home with me. The people didn't send her with any food, toys, litterbox, anything, just herself. I thought that a little odd.

So, we came home. She wandered around, she meowed, we discussed names. The only two she even flicked an ear at were "Coffee" and "Princess Fuzzinator Fluffypaws" .. She is also terrified of the gerbils. (I somehow doubt this'll last.) She marked everything in the apartment as her's, she ate some food (I'd suspected the amount of stuff that'd come with her and had prepared) and then showed me her trick of walking across the keyboard when she wants attention. (Matt has called this a level one cat skill.)

Discussing names via Facebook, I tried "Amy" (after the Doctor's redheaded companion) and she came running. Amy it is.

I'm just hoping she can get comfortable and consider my apartment home.. :P

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Hockey and the Things Lorna is NOT Allowed to Do.

In honour of the start of the NHL playoffs, I repost the list Skippy posted with a thumbs up and guffaw.

Lorna’s Hockey List.

November 1st, 2009 by skippy
Things I have learnt attending hockey games; from professional to my friends’ kids.

1) I am not allowed to call the very big men with blunt weapons “A BUNCH OF SISSIES!” and hide behind my brother. Or my friend’s husband. Or my tiny blonde friend.

2) I am not allowed to call the very big men with blunt weapons any names.

3) I am not allowed to tap on the Plexiglas behind the guest team and ask them when hockey players started swallowing instead of spitting.

4) I am DEFINITELY not allowed to ask the same players which their boyfriends prefer, since they seem to excel at sucking.

5) I am not allowed to talk to the hockey players.

6) I am not allowed to communicate with any being on the ice, not limited to players, referees, linesmen, guy destroying our national anthem or the hat boys.

7) I am not allowed to talk to the coaches either.

8) Nor am I allowed to talk to anyone on the bench.

9) In fact, why don’t I just sit there and be quiet and stop trying to get my favourite older brother killed? (And he’s the one who went to a Red Wings game wearing a Canucks jersey IN DETROIT!)

10) I am not allowed to try and give married hockey players my phone number. (In my defense, it’s not like I could see the rings they’re not wearing under their gloves.)

11) I am to remember I’m not allowed to talk to the hockey players and for the love of God, please stop trying to pick up big, hairy, sweaty men.

12) No, I’m not allowed to pick up non-sweaty men either. Or non-hairy. Or small. Well, okay, maybe if they have two seat season tickets and I don’t want to go to all the games with them.

13) I am really, really, REALLY not allowed to toss my friend’s beer at the ref. It’s a waste of good beer since the safest place to be is where I’m aiming. (I didn’t ACTUALLY do this..)

14) I am not allowed to yell “THE PANTHERS PLAYED BETTER THAN THIS!” in a sold out crowd at a Canuck’s game.

15) I am not allowed to wear a Flames jersey to see the Canucks when the Flames aren’t even playing. (Hey, it’s not like I actually own one!)

16) After the fourth time I ask “Okay, so which one is Matt Cooke?” my brother is allowed to hit me later. (Apparently smacking a woman when surrounded by beer fueled hockey fans is a BAD IDEA.)

17) No, I can’t burp “Oh Canada.”

18) No, I can’t have beer. GM Place does not sell gluten free beer, stop asking at each damn cart and concession.

19) Real hockey fans don’t drink green tea. (So told to me by a concession guy!)

20) Yes, the 17 year old Juniors skate with the kids after the game, but they’re 17 and have more energy than the players in the NHL. No, I’m not allowed to ask for energy level demonstrations.

21) I’m not allowed to yell “MY MOTHER CAN SKATE BETTER THAN THAT, and she’s OLD AND IRISH!” at the centre forward. Or anyone else. Stop talking to the players.

22) I am not allowed to ask Bruiser why he’s the mascot for the Chilliwack Bruins instead of going to Langley with the (now) Langley Chiefs.

23) I am not allowed to invite Fin, the Canucks mascot, back home for some sushi. (He’s a whale.)

24) Y’know what? I’m not allowed to talk to any of the mascots either.

25) Okay, I am allowed to taunt, torment and harass the CFOX fox as much as I like.

26) I am not allowed to brandish my lighter ala rock ballad during the singing of the national anthems.

27) I am not allowed to talk to the security personnel. Even if I do know them from Sci-Fi conventions.

28) I am not allowed to pretend to be a lesbian to get better seats.. unless they have two spare.

29) I am not allowed to talk to random people on the SkyTrain. I am scaring the Vancouver’ites by being cheerful and friendly.

30) No, sharing pictures of my pet rabbit with the huge mohawked guy showing me pictures of his kids is not normal.

31) I am not allowed to make my brother wonder why our parents didn’t stop at one every fifteen seconds. No, not every sixteen seconds either.

32) Talking female plumbing problems with a woman I just met is not normal either. No, not even “Lorna normal”.

33) I am not allowed to make thirteen year old boys cry.

34) Not even if they were being ice hogs.

35) No I may not drive the zamboni, no, I’m not allowed to ask, and I’m certainly not allowed to try and chat up any and all Zamboni drivers.

36) I am not allowed to offer the ref a gift certificate to a eye exam chain.

37) FUBAR may be a perfectly good description of the game, but I’m also not allowed to explain to thirteen year old boys what it means/stands for.

38) Yes, the thirteen year old boys may know better profanity than me, but I’m not allowed to play vocabulary swap.

39) I am not allowed to use language learned from drunk members of Canada’s military. Or sober ones, for that matter. Or America’s military. Or… Y’know what? No military terminology.

40) Offering a cookie per goal to thirteen year olds may be a good bribe, but make sure the parents know why I am giving their kids cookies.

41) I am most certainly NOT allowed to give the opposing team ex-lax cookies. (Not that I REALLY wanted to. Honest!)

42) I am allowed to embarrass my friends’ kids – I am not allowed to ask people next to me their kid’s names so I can embarrass them too.

43) I am not allowed to tell an eight year old that I drink green tea because green is like grass and I’m allergic to pot. (Not like she understood what grass has in common with cooking implements anyway!)

44) I am allowed to entertain several ten year old boys with stories of the incoming zombie apocalypse between periods. Apparently anything is allowed if it keeps boys quiet and in one place for ten minutes?

45) I am to take my friend’s usage of the word “anything” to mean “anything SHE would do” NOT “anything *I* would do”

46) I am not allowed to start fights with hockey parents – even if they are being obnoxious, loud-mouthed assholes.

47) I am allowed to make snarky comments about said hockey parents loud enough to carry only if my friend’s husband is NOT between me and said parents.

48) I am still not allowed to ask to drive the zamboni.

49) Giggling over a player tripping over his own stick comes under the “Not allowed to make thirteen year olds cry rule.” Even if it was f’n funny and he did it twice in one game.

40) Buying my brother Starbucks or my friends Timmy’s may not forgive all, but it’s a good start. Add Tylenol.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

[Bunny Fiction] Speedy's Scarf - The Interview!

Betsy coughed to clear her throat and thumped her rear foot lightly. "C'mon Gus! I have to make the five o'clock news here!"

Gus bunny grumbled under his breath as he hauled in the camera. Oh no, he couldn't stea - er, borrow, his Dad's NEWEST camera, because that would be noticed, he had to go get the older, heavier, bigger one. Betsy was so PICKY. He stopped and put down the strap as their victim, er, interviewee watched with nose wriggling a mile a minute.

"HI There!" Betsy said, bounding up. "I'm Betsy Bunny, this is my boy puppet, Gus." She turned to look over her shoulder to Gus, "And be sure to get my good side! I spent all morning grooming and napping to look my best for this!"

"One side is much like the other," Gus grumbled.

"WHAT?" Betsy growled, pretending not to have heard him perfectly.

"You're equally beautiful on both sides?" Gus reiterated, hopefully.

"That's better, mister." She grumped before turning back to Speedy and turning the sunshine and light on. "So, Speedy, you're the bun with the scarf!" she said

Speedy nodded, cautiously. He wasn't quite sure how he'd gotten talked into this whole 'interview' thing, but it seemed to involve a lot of bossing around. But, then, near as he could tell, having a mate meant having someone to boss around .. for the female. He didn't think he wanted someone to nag at him, he liked having a Mum, he didn't need a wife thankyouverymuch.

"You got that thing running yet?" Betsy snapped at Gus.

"I think so." Gus said, ear cocked to the slight sounds of the electronics working.

Aware that she was now 'on the air', Betsy gave him her sweetest eyelash flutter, "Thank you, Gus, I'd just be LOST without you." She sat down kitty corner to Speedy so the camera could get both of them. "Now, tell me Speedy, how did you come about to gain a scarf."

"Well, I saw one online, and I decided I wanted one." He replied simply.

"Uhm hmm," Betsy agreed, thinking does were SO much easier to interview, "And how did you get one after deciding you wanted one then?"

"Oh. I got my Mum to knit it. She grumbled that she isn't very good - but just look at it!" He turned about so they could admire the bright red scarf, "Isn't it marvelous?"

"Yes, humans do have their uses!" Betsy agreed. "And its a very nice shade." She nodded. "Does it keep you warm outside?" She wasn't supposed to know about the outside place, her human thought she and Gus were napping in the back of their tunnels. Humans, as all bunnies knew, weren't very bright.

Speedy turned to look over at the window, "Its been nasty out there, all rain and hail, I haven't had a chance to go outside yet.. so mostly I've just been hanging it on the wall and nibbling on the fringed bits. Mum doesn't like when I do that, but I think she's just being lazy about not wanting to have to make another."

"Humans ARE so difficult sometimes, aren't they?" Betsy commiserated. "Do you think you'll get another scarf? Maybe in blue?"

"Oh!" Speedy thought about that, seemingly liking the idea but then shook his head, "No, I think one scarf is enough for now. I'm not sure where I'd keep a second one."

Betsy nodded in what she called her 'sage and understanding' manner. "Storage IS always such an issue!" she agreed. "Well, congratulations Speedy on your scarf. Training humans is such hard work! Hopefully other humans will pick up on this bit of training and save some future buns some future work!"

They all wriggled noses and bottoms at the unlikeliness of THAT!

"This is Betsy Bunny, Gus Bunny, and Speedy Bunny, signing off from Great Britain!"

Gus pushed the stop button and looked over at Speedy. "What makes it great?" he asked with idle curiosity.

"All the bunnies!" Speedy replied with great conviction.

"Duh." Betsy said to her mate with condescension.

Gus just rolled his eyes and started to haul the camera back to the closet portal. They better be back home in time for dinner, or Betsy was getting her tail nipped!

Betsy gave Speedy a lick on the nose, "Thanks handsome!" she said before turning hock and hopping after Gus. "..I'll open the portal this time, you always try to take a left in Albuquerque!"

Speedy blinked slowly and then started to groom his nose. That lick had felt quite funny. He sneezed. Ugh. Girls.

He shook all over and picked up his scarf to pull over to his warm spot by the radiator. He nosed it about a few times until it was in a nice looped pile and meatloafed on top, inner eyelids starting to drift closed. He looked quite dapper AND it was a comfy pillow. He did really have quite the talented Mum.

* * *

Betsy and Gus come from The Life and Time of Bunnies :)
Speedy can be found at Speedy the Cheeky Bunny

A new home for the troublesome twosome!

The Ferginator would like to remind you,
spoiled is something found in the fridge.

I was never truly happy with the aquarium. It was kind of small for two boisterous boys, it didn't seem to have a lot of air traffic, and they couldn't climb. So, on and off I've been looking for a new home for them. The first priority was it has to be all metal - those little teeth can chew through plastic like you wouldn't believe.

I did a Google search a couple weeks ago and came up with various WARE products. Amazon had the one pictured above on sale for a rediculously low price so I snagged it for them. It's about the same width and depth as their aquarium, but it has three shelves above the floor and many added bonuses. Of course, Amazon refuses to ship anything to do with animal products across the border to Canada (its not worth the issues of what is and isn't legal, I'd imagine), so my brother sent me to  They're a service that you plug in their address, it gets shipped to them, they email you when the package arrives for you, you go down, pay them $5, and then you drive home. Often that $5 is miles cheaper than what the difference in price between Canadian and American shipping would be. Basically, you're saving on the cost of hassle for whatever shipping company having to deal with customs. I think in the 10 minutes I was in the building, they made $40. Friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful people.  Definitely a plus for any Canuck who orders from the States and is a reasonable distance from the border! (I think it was 20 mins driving, 5 mins border lineup going south, 10 mins going north, 20 home.. with a stop at Petsmart to pick up some more litter and food.)

Anyway - the new cage! Their wheel attaches to the bars of the cage. Hallelujah! No more bouncy noise from their wheel(s)! And trust me, Fergie tried for a while. He was sitting in the wheel, facing out, swinging his butt back and forth for a while (so rather like a sideways rocking chair) and then he tried jumping up and down a few times. A minor squeek that I probably wouldn't have heard if the TV was on, and that's IT. Fergie seemed most perturbed at the lack of noise. Freddie doesn't seem to care, he just kicked his brother out and went for a good run before he jumped back down and kicked Fergie out of the food. (You can guess who is the boss..)

Their bottle, oh beauty, now attaches to the cage. Before I had to have it jury-rigged through the mesh on top of the aquarium. So now it's easy to remove, wash, refill, and put back. I can even change their food without having to swear at the bottle for five minutes. Even better, their food is no longer resting on a shelf that a cunning Fergie had learned how to tip so I'd have to refill it. (This would produce the satisfying byproduct of him getting more sunflower seeds.) I'm sure sooner or later he'll come up with the bright idea of just shoving their crock off the shelf, but until then I'm not going to worry. That point I'll probably just go get one of those bird feeders that attach to the cage bars. (I'm such a meanie-head!)

Freddie celebrated their new digs by running up and down the walls half the night. That boy is a climber. He just seemed so happy to be able to climb again. I don't think he used the ramps once in his explorations. Fergie climbed a bit and then used the ramps. The bottom ramp will make a little noise if he bounces on his run down. (This seems to make him happy. Little brat.)  So I think I can safely say they're both pretty darn happy with their new home!

Many reviews on Amazon were bitching about the ill-fitting corners. Let me tell you, having assembled countless rabbit cages (aka walled litter boxes since they were never closed), and a few gerbil ones now .. They never fit properly. You always need a pair of needle nose pliers as part of the assembly process. To tighten up the fastenings, sometimes to adjust them, and sometimes just to apply a little BFI(*) to the situation. I may get some twist ties to put in one spot where it bulges a bit. I don't think they could get their heads through BUT, I'd rather be safe than sorry on that one.. Otherwise, worth every penny I paid.

(*) - BFI = Brute Force and Ignorance. ie, when something doesn't fit, apply hammer; when something does work.. apply hammer. :)