assorted rants, dogs, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy, miscellaneous drivel, theology

“Normal?” – Not My Relatives! Wanna Pet My Kid’s Skunk?

steve-o and astro

Yes.  It’s a skunk. Yes. It is sleeping atop my offspring.

I am more of a dog person than anything.  I like cats too, and I have cats, but to me there is nothing like the relationship one can have with a dog.

I have no idea what got the POMC started in on skunks, other than he really doesn’t connect with cats, and he’s somewhat freaky about dogs. He was dog bit rather severely when he was nine.  His right hand might look normal now, but that dog chewed it up like burger meat and he has permanent nerve damage.  Dogs have pretty much given him the creeps ever since, which really sucks.

ferret

He had ferrets in high school, much to my mother’s disgust, because ferrets have a funk.  Even I can smell ferret funk, which means they must smell pretty nasty to most people.  Odor aside, they just never really thrilled me much.  I’ve heard them described as “cat snakes,” which is about right.  Dinky, sneaky little bastards as far as I’m concerned.

skunk

In the skunk’s defense, he is de-scented and the only thing about him that really smells is his shit.  Skunk shit is nasty, nasty, nasty.  The skunk himself, however, is very clean and doesn’t really have a smell to him.

Even so, I’d rather deal with a dog or a cat.  Skunks have sensitive digestive systems and special nutritional needs. They have to have their food specially prepared (sort of like feeding a toddler) unlike a dog or cat who can eat prepackaged dog or cat food and be cool with it.  It’s also a real pain in the hiney to find a vet who will deal with skunks.  Their anatomy and physiology is nothing like dogs or cats, so the vets that will work with them generally cost up the wazoo.

exotic vet

Most vets don’t want to see anything that isn’t a cat or a dog.  I can’t say I blame them.

Skunks are a vector for rabies in the wild, which is enough to scare off most people from owning them.  However, the truth is that the only way for any mammal to get rabies is to be bitten by something with rabies.   Domestic, captive born skunks don’t have rabies, and won’t get rabies unless something with rabies bites them.  Captive born and kept indoors, skunks are just as safe to keep as a pet (and not a rabies risk!) as an indoor cat.

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Harmless as Jezebel? I don’t give my indoor cats rabies shots because there’s no way for them to get bitten by something that’s rabid.

Lucy

The dogs do get rabies shots because a.) they go outside and therefore in theory can be bitten by something rabid, and b.) state law requires it.

I am one of those weird people who can really go off on bizarre tangents at times.  I bought – and read with fascination-  this book some while back- Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus..  It’s a compelling read on a rather off the wall subject.  I will have to let the illustrious offspring borrow this one if he’s in the mood for some enlightening late night reading. Of course my tastes in literature are mostly non-fiction (science and history) and often tend to gravitate toward the macabre.

I don’t think I have one “normal” relative.  Not one.  My son passes for normal most of the time, but they are all certifiable.

Mom is probably the one that’s the closest to the cuckoo’s nest- she’s bi-polar with a heaping helping of anxiety, OCD, and extreme naïveté to go along with it.  Jerry is a laundry list of fun beginning with adult ADHD, Helpless Man syndrome, and ending with a rip roaring case of what I call “functional drunk.”

Dad’s gotten a lot more fun since he’s gotten old. It wouldn’t surprise me that like his own father he decides now that he’s 70 years old that, “I’m not old. I’m middle aged.” Nobody had the heart to tell Grandpa when he turned 70 that it was highly unlikely he’d see 140, but he did live to be 91.   I guess it’s all about your attitude.

There’s a phenomenon with some older people where their frontal lobe (the “traffic cop” of the brain) sort of wears out and doesn’t screen one’s conversation as thoroughly as it once did, or probably should.

So Dad, who used to be rather tight-lipped and taciturn, has gotten rather cheeky as he ages.  His oh-so scathing commentary is starting to remind me of my grandmother and great-grandmother (ironically my mother’s mother and grandmother, go figure) and it’s a hoot. It drives Mom nuts, on the rare occasion she actually gets the reference and/or the double entendre. I’m glad that most of the time it goes over her head, for her own sanity and well being.

Mom has her own special brand of near-senility which is even more creepy than my Dad flipping off traffic.  She has always gravitated to the mega-weird parts of Catholicism which is downright scary, but the older she gets the more she watches EWTN, goes to Mass and Confession, and is grabbing on that rosary.  Normally I would say religious disciplines would be a good thing, but she gets Really Weird with it.  She thought that if she left EWTN on all the time full blast that the POMC would see the Catholic light and become a priest.  Never mind that he’s pretty much agnostic and really creeped by “men in dresses.”

To top that off, she’s also blithely ignorant that it’s really, really gauche to ask someone who is a confessional Lutheran and who has done a lot of theological and spiritual soul searching to come on down to the Catholic cathedral to venerate some dead saint’s bones.  Apparently the Catholic school she went to didn’t teach too much about Martin Luther, the 95 Theses, and the Reformation.

I had to decline the bone-gazing and necromancy out of conscience, but as far as she knows I declined because I had to do laundry.  I’d rather tell a little white lie – though I really did do laundry- than go through a detailed theological dissertation on why I don’t venerate saints’ bones.  I don’t need to hurt her feelings.

Even the POMC is borderline OCD. His car and motorcycle both are testament to that.

Both of my sisters could be called “castrating bitches,” due to the fact that they both can run a man like a railroad.

And here I sit with my own frailties and funky wiring.

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assorted rants, gratuitous self pity, historical interest, misanthropy

Time Passages, Necessary Evils, and Random Mental Excursions

 

birthday shit yourself

Or not.  Preferably not.

I don’t want to change any more shitty diapers in my life. I did enough of that when my illustrious EX mother-in-law decided to let my then-20 month old son go through an entire box of graham crackers in an afternoon.

Suffice to say that the graham crackers pretty much didn’t do much to prevent my son from partaking in the “evil” of self-abuse, (face it people, all boys masturbate whether they admit to it or not,) but they did much to make him shit like a horse for a week straight.

Tall Stack of Graham Crackers

Tall Stack of Graham Crackers

Once you’ve had to power wash your kid, Clorox his jammies and the bed sheets every day for a week because he wakes up with the entire bed  coated in used graham crackers that have made their way down the good ol’ Hershey Highway, the whole hosing-shit-off-bloody-everything routine gets extremely old. I did have a number of choice pejoratives for my evil ex-mother-in-law, but in her defense, her head never was screwed on quite right. Suffice to say she was never left alone with the POMC again.  To this day he is scared shitless (oh, what a relevant metaphor!) of that harpie, even though he was only three the last time he ever even saw her.  If she’s still alive- and if only the good die young she’ll live to be 900- she’s well in her 80s.  As long as she stays away from me, I truly don’t care where she is, how old she is, or what she does with herself.

I can’t imagine changing diapers for any of my adult relatives.  Though it may sound callous, if you can’t make it to the crapper or wipe your own ass, the nursing home is calling your name.  I’m weird enough about people touching me, let alone having to touch other people in ways I don’t even want to contemplate.

I understand that the people at the nursing home will have to hose off your carcass from time to time, but 1.) they are getting paid to do it, and 2.) they have a ready supply of disposable gloves.

pink rubber gloves

I was probably the only child who was grateful for a teacher or parent’s admonition to a group of children to “keep your hands and feet to yourself.” Anything that will keep the little snot spewers from fingering me or violating my personal space is a good thing.  When I was growing up, people usually only made physical contact with me to slather nasty things on me, throw live stinging insects in my hair, or to kick my ass.  I am wary for a reason.

Pink_Fuzzy_Large_Pillow

I can’t tolerate itchy, inflexible or binding clothing against my skin.  Ever.  I still have bad memories of 70’s polyester and those God-awful pantsuits Grandma made for us out of that stuff.  Grandma was a fantastic seamstress, but if you create clothing out of fabric that is more like Teflon  than cashmere, it’s not going to be comfortable.  Mom would add itchy lace socks and turtlenecks to these pantsuits and I literally got welts all over from both the friction and the heat generated by those purgatorial ensembles.  70’s polyester was HOT as well as being inflexible and itchy.  It did NOT breathe.

1970s-fashion-designs

Lord, deliver us from these horrible garments!

I can’t move my LEG!!!

Even denim was problematic back in the day, as you pretty much had to drive over a pair of jeans, then wash them several times in flaming hot water with bleach, then dry them for a few hours with some marbles thrown in for fun. Otherwise the skin-tight (no spandex…) denim would be so crunchy and rigid that breathing was almost as impossible as bending at the knees, or sitting.

80s jeans

Just Don’t Bend Over.

Another drawback of 80’s clothes is that you had to iron just about everything, including the (usually) cotton oxford shirts.  Cotton breathes, which is a plus, but those oxford shirts are a bitch to iron.  Of course, not liking itchy or crunchy things, I was never a big fan of starch.

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