Monday, May 31, 2004

Dog = Babe Magnet? 

I walk a lot. Have done, for as long as I can remember. When I have a dog, I usually walk the dog. When I don't, or when the dog's not physically able to walk, I walk alone. Walking, for me, is often what meditation or drugs or sleep or labyrinth-walking or, for many Americans, television or any number of other things are for other people: a sort of catharsis. It's also apparently good for me, as I've got a good standing pulserate, great blood pressure (actually, as of Saturday, my systolic and diastolic bp were both up about twenty points, which means I'm around normal now instead of low. I put this down to being sick, and perhaps some anxiety about the wisdom teeth removal thing.), and am generally very healthy (except for right now, but this is an aberration).

Now, I also finally have a dog again, a Great Pyrenees, as all two of you who care enough to read this thing know. I generally take him on three long walks a day. Right now he's almost seventy pounds, so he's getting up near half-size, and he's intelligent, and he's beautiful -- show quality -- and he's extraordinarily friendly. The other day, as I was setting out to walk him, Dick commented that a dog, especially a cute puppy, is a "major babe magnet," to which Linda rejoined that "of course he knows that. Why do you think he's out walking him so much?" Well, I'm sure I'd heard of this phenomenon before, but it hadn't really occurred to me, and to tell the truth, it didn't entirely displease me. I mean, I don't have any friends my age in my state, or any of the state bordering it, or even most of the state bordering them, so if having a cute dog along will draw people to me, especially babes, and especially babes my age, living in my neighborhood . . . well, I've got no problem with that. At that point though, I'd already been home a couple days, so had already taken him for six or seven good long walks, and had seen nary another human being other than the odd elderly person working in her yard, a couple joggers, and the like. But I figured, give it time. I'm a patient fellow. Sometimes.

After another day's worth of walks, I'd still met no one, babe or otherwise. I got home, flipped my dog over, and noticed to my surprise that while the the Babe Magnet toggle was flipped to the on position, the Polarity Knob had somehow gotten turned all the way from "attract" to "repel." D'oh! Needless to say, I immediately rectified this situation.

That night, I was out walking him. I'd already probably been out close to an hour and was beginning to thing Caleb's Babe Magnet was defective and maybe I'd have to return or exchange him. Just as I was thinking this, however, an SUV pulled over to the side of the road, and nothing happened. Then, after several moments, a babe got out. Now, I don't want to sound like I objectify women here -- but let's face it, I'm a man, and to some extent we all do, so whatever -- and if I know nothing else about her, I know she was absolutely gorgeous. Beautiful face, beautiful eyes, beautiful smile (her teeth weren't great, but nobody's perfect) wonderful figure -- not that skeletal "beauty" that's in vogue these days; she had some meat on her bones -- about seven miles of legs . . . but I'll stop, for I don't want to sound as though I'm drooling. Really, I'm not! Anyway, she even looked within a year either way of my age; needless to say, Caleb's BM software was no longer in doubt. She walked over, asked "Can I pet him?". I said, "You may," and then winced; sounded to myself like I'd put too much emphasis on the second word, like I'd been pointing out her grammatical error as well as answering. Maybe, on some level, I had. Anyway, as she petted him, we chatted for a minute. It was nice; I didn't get tongue twisted or go silent as I often do when attempting to talk with people I don't know; Caleb provided a good starting point for conversation so it didn't die before it could even start. I even got her laughing, though I don't remember now what I said. Of course, the moment was a bit sullied when I noticed what I can only assume was her boyfriend waiting in the car with an unpleasant sort of scowl on his face. She rejoined him all too soon, and I was left wondering whether it's possible to modify the Babe Magnet so it's more likely to pull in unattached babes.

So, dog owners of the world: Keep walking your dog. It's good for the dog, for you, and for the possibilities.

Also, I met my sister's fiancé yesterday. His mere presence didn't offend me as so many of her boyfriends have, and while the evening didn't end with the two of us best friends, he at least seems someone I can get along with, which is good. I haven't had to threaten him with the swords yet.

Tooth-yanking is tomorrow morning. I've talked to several people. Dick, who's had some unfortunate dental experiences, says that three of the five most horrible experiences of his life have been during oral surgery, that I shouldn't mess around, that I should take everything they'll give me. Dad says don't be a wimp, stick with the local anaesthetic, besides, my grandfather's a holocaust survivor, so I should stay away from the gas. That's dad's sense of humor for you.

So, question of the week: Novocaine or laughing gas?

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Sick and tired. . . 

Ever since I got home from school on Wednesday evening, I've been sick. This is surprising, as my immune system is generally pretty on top of things and very fast. I do get sick once in a while, but rare's the time any bug lasts more than a day. Now, though . . . this is the sickest I've probably ever been, and it's almost as annoying as when I got bronchitis about ten years ago. It started out as the worst sore throat I've ever had, and spread to include general soreness all over, overactive sinuses, fever, my head feels swollen, and I haven't been able to get more than a couple hours of sleep over the last three nights. Sounds something like the flu, but the longest flu symptoms have ever lasted for me have been about 24 hours. It hasn't put me out of comission yet, but I am more lethargic and irritable than I like to be, and the lack of sleep thing is grating, too. Plus I'm supposed to get my wisdom teeth out on Tuesday, and I don't know whether they'll be able to do that while I've got whatever infection I've got now, so I'm hopeful either this'll go away or I'll get ahold of some good antibiotics before then.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

It's been a long time. . . 

I'm home at last, and am now a senior. Yippee. Waiting for me when I arrived last night, besides my family and my dog, were VanderMeer's Secret Life and Hughes' Worming the Harpy and quite a few other books. I'm definitely accumulating books quite a bit fast than I can read them. I'm currently on a brief vacation from thinking, and am reading the most recent couple Harry Potter books to get myself caught up, then probably Steven Barnes' new Star Wars novel, and then I'll dig into the pile of VanderMeer and Hughes and Saramago I've got waiting for me, than probably Move Under Ground, and then get caught up on Kage Baker's Company novels before Mother Aegypt comes out. Somewhere in there I'll fit in the other gazillion books waiting unread on my cases and table and so forth.

Since I've gotten to college, and especially over this past year, I've become a lot less shy . . . at least around people I know. And I definitely have a lot more friends right now than, a year ago, I'd ever expected to have. Which is not saying much, but it's something, and it's nice. Around people I don't know or don't know well, however, I'm still infuriatingly unable to say even a word (well, infuriating to me. To others, it's probably just odd or awkward). It drives me nuts, but I haven't managed to get over or around it.

Hmm . . . exciting news, I guess. My sister's engaged. To whom, I don't know. I think I heard his name is Eric, and if that's the case then I haven't met him. Apparently they plan to get married in three years, which is when he graduates. I'm debating whether or not, when he visits, to sit in the corner sharpening my swords and playing the insane homicidal older brother part or not. I hear he's quiet, and since I'm quiet, we might hit it off, or it might just get awkward. We shall see. In any event, I'm looking forward to meeting him.

My dog is now almost seventy pounds, probably about half-sized right now. He's about 5 months old, and getting neutered in just under a month. He fell in the pool recently, and learned how to swim real fast, which is good, because otherwise he'd probably be dead.

I've got to get going. More later.

Monday, May 03, 2004

Monday again. 

It's Monday again. I skipped one of my classes this afternoon. As it turns out, so did the teacher, so my attendance record in that class is still perfect. I'm feeling lucky. Also lazy. I'm definitely procrastinating right now. My excuse is my headache, which I've had since Saturday morning and simply won't go away. Annoying bastard.

Last night, I watched The Matrix Revolutions. I wrote a fairly large "review," then figured no one would probably care, so decided not to post it here. If anyone is interested, let me know. Long story short, it's terrible, but not quite as terrible as Reloaded. On a scale of 1-10, I'd give the first Matrix movie about a 7, maybe 7.5; the second a 2; and the third a 3.

Now for a tale of the popular conception of my athletic prowess. In my racquetball class today, I was playing against a girl (yes, many people in the athletic department fall under the MCP category. This was intended as a slight.). After we had played, I found out that the other guys had been placing bets. Everyone had bet against me, except for one guy who'd put a dime on me. A dime. But I won, and my pal split his winnings with me -- a good thirty cents.

On Saturday, I went to Carolanne's senior recital, and then to Caroline's senior recital. That Brett fellow who died a week ago was supposed to have performed at both of them. It was fairly sad, especially when Carolanne started sobbing while playing the song he was to have sung.

Apparently Caleb has grown out of his puppyish body and is beginning to look like a real dog. I can't wait to see him again.

Question of the Week: Why, Mr. Anderson? Why?

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Things with which I'm more comfortable than being in dancing proximity to another human being. 

A partial list:Which is not to say that I enjoy those things. I'm just more comfortable dealing with them (that lust, just barely). Nevertheless, I?ve come to the conclusion, reading over my list, that I am a moron.

Seriously, every time practice rolls around, I find myself sitting here coming up with all kinds of excuses not to go. And then I realize, no one's forcing me to go. I'm choosing to go. Exactly, in large part, to overcome this ridiculous self-consciousness. My excuses are for no one but me. So I get off my ass, go to practice, and feel like an asshole. A very uncomfortable asshole. I wonder how long it'll take before I get over it.

Academically, I'm getting to the point where I need to submit a proposal for my Senior Project. And let me tell you, the Senior Project proposal forms are definitely geared toward Lit concentrations and are not really appropriate for Creative Writing concentrations.

Now, I need to get back to work.

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