The Snoopy Project: #1 Vermeer

I’ve decided to document the drawings I do at work on the dry erase board to make my co workers smile. Right now I’m doing a series of Snoopy drawings inspired by fine art paintings.


Snoopy with a Pearl Earring

Inspired by Girl with a Pearl Earring – Vermeer 1665

Friends Don’t Let Friends Do Electrical Work

I had wanted a dimmer switch ever since the 80’s were a thing and when my friends and I got into the collage years of life, I decided that it was time and mom couldn’t stop me anyway. I was 19 damn it. I was an adult! Yet it was when I turned 23 that she finally stopped telling me to go to bed and do my homework – but I digress.

I must have been one of the last, pre-recession people who wanted to stay home when attending college. Free laundry, hot meals, private room and all the chocolate I could eat unless she found it first. Who would turn that down? Derek, one of my brother’s best friends and mine too, was studying to be an engineer. He now works at a high paying job in an undisclosed location near the center of the earth with a large wingback chair and a cat with a screeching meow. (Kudos to you that get the reference) He said he knew how to install a light switch so I took him at his word.

My parents bought 3 family private house, one in a row of 5 or 6, in the late 70’s, when money could get you real things and income equality hadn’t gone completely off the wall just yet. All three apartments are set up almost like a railroad flat with one room after the other. At the rear near the door to the back yard are the living room and one bedroom. Following toward the front of the place, down the long hallway, you pass the kitchen, open dining room, big bathroom directly across from the front door to the hall stairs, the master bedroom used by my brother (Brad) and Derek, and then my room at the end of the line. If you sit in the cushy chair by the glad backyard door, you can see straight into my room in one unbroken line.

Our buddy is the type to tinker with anything. Not much has changed since then either and he never let a little thing like an exploding Tonka truck stop him – but that’s another story. When I asked for the install he was ready to hit home depot like a frat boy on Friday night.

I love my mother, but calm isn’t her thing. Of course she sits in the chair with the view of my room that very night that we decide we’re going to do this thing, because fate and crap. Mom, Brad and I (and possibly another of our friends) were all in the living room while he was working. In our style we would crack jokes and call him Bubba the Plumber because my family is made of assholes and I love them. Everything was going fine for the first twenty minutes and then there was a loud pop and a bright flash of blue light from the bedroom seconds before that end of the house was plunged into darkness. My mother screamed out, “Derek, are you ok?!”

We sat there, each silent second going by seeming to be an eternity, and then he answered in a shaky voice, “Yes?” The lot of us heaved a collective sigh of relief, me and Brad on our feet and down the hall right after. We found him laughing. Typical.

Mom flipped the breakers to turn on the electricity to that end of the house, all the while swearing in Scottish because of the shock. Apparently we were a “shower a’ bastards” and other stuff I can’t spell.

But wait! There’s more! A few more minutes of him fiddling and the project was complete. It worked beautifully! I had more mood lighting than one co-ed, who couldn’t get a date anyway, than I would ever need.

At least we thought so until Brad went to turn on his computer. I heard a string of curses and profanities from my brother’s room. Apparently, when we hooked up the dimmer switch it drained all the power from the other room. I have no idea how that works because I do not science for electrical wires. He carried on as if we kicked his puppy so Derek had to undo everything that was done so Brad could get power back to his room.

Final note: I never did get my dimmer switch.

5 Ways That Clickbait Will Help My Site Traffic

I love the human condition sometimes. All you have to do is create a bullet list or an infographic and presto! You get people clicking the link thinking, ‘Oo! What’s this?’ or the more insidious trollers, ‘How many ways is this bitch wrong?’

Ah the internet. Here’s my plan!


  1. Create titles that have numbers and insinuate that a bulleted list of ‘facts’ will be discussed, or at least, listed so the first line can be read and the rest of the text skimmed or skipped.
  2. Don’t do any actual research, but instead lift commonly known tidbits of information off the interwebs.
  3. Two words: Cat Photos.
  4. Actually offer sound advice for commonly known issues, problems, gripes, moans, groans and general complaints.
  5. Just have a list of my favorite My Little Pony characters.


And there you have it! My recipe for getting more site traffic by manipulating the populous’ tendency to click on anything that will break information down in to snack sized pieces.

Thank you,

The Management.

Holy Christ, I Almost Hit a God Damn Coyote

Yes, friends. The title says it all. Why is this night different from other nights? Because it’s Passover and on the drive home from a lovely Seder dinner, I almost hit a goddamn coyote.

I was behind the wheel, driving down the Saw Mill Parkway at around 9:30pm, going the speed limit with my husband, sister-in-law and her fiancé. This road is poorly lit on a good day and the stretch of road we were traveling on had no lights for the most part and a speed limit of 50. It’s a twisty road as well, so driving with caution is always a good idea. I’ve always prided myself on my killer night vision and tonight it saved the life of a very scared coyote and spared the rest of us minor injuries.

I saw something far down the road scurry across through the darkness and my brain yelled to me, “Slow down! Object ahead!” My brain gets right to the point. My headlights hadn’t even got to it at that point, but when they did I started a controlled brake. I think I said “Oh shit” but to me, everything got quiet and I was super-focused on the object ahead of me. My brain was already running through things I’ve been told:

  • Mom – if it’s a deer, brake or turn. Something that big can wreck the car and really hurt you
  • Dad – use the shoulder if you have to. If you’re going too fast and it’s small, keep going.
  • PETA, HSUS, ASPCA, etc.. – coyotes are living things. They do not pose an immediate threat to humans. Do not engage. Do not kill!
  • Me – I brake for animals. Please don’t be a cat!

So my brain does the calculations for me at light speed, which as a dyslexic, was pretty freaking awesome and correct. I kept applying pressure to the brake, first slowly, then harder until I was maybe 5 inches from the animal as it hauled ass across the front of the car. Thankfully, no one was behind me. That would have been a disaster. Everyone was buckled up and because it was a controlled brake, no one got whiplash and the coyote vanished into the tree line. I would have felt terrible if I hurt it, and worse if I killed it. It all happened so fast, and there really wasn’t anywhere to pull over and catch my breath, so I just kept driving, super concentrating on the roads and watching the sidelines with frequent glances, as was everyone else in the car.

My focus was able to split back into the normal multitasker that it usually is after a few minutes and I realized that my passengers were talking about what just happened. The different reactions upon realizing that there was a coyote in the road were priceless.

  • Hubby – what the—OH SHIT?!
  • Sis Fiancé – is that-OH SHIT!
  • Sis in law – shit. –braces for impact and thinks this is how it ends. Damnit

Can I just say I love my family? Because I do. The fiancé said flat out, “If you had hit that, there’s no way we were going to let you stop.” Which is totally fair and valid, but let me tell you, I would have had a hard time with that. At the very least, I would have insisted on calling the ASPCA or the local police. The irrational part of me still wants to go in the woods, find it, bring it home, and give it chicken soup because I’m a crazy tree hugger and I still feel bad that the poor thing had such a close brush with death. Luckily, the other parts of my personality screamed in my mind, “are you stupid????”

Yes. Sometimes. But not today.

I get that there are a lot of people who want coyotes dead or relocated or whatever, but my feeling is, it is a living, breathing thing. I can’t get upset over a coyote acting like a predator because that’s its nature. It’s like getting pissed at the rain for being wet. By the same token, if a bear was chewing on my leg, I wouldn’t pass him the ketchup. Let’s not get crazy here. (editor’s note: leg goes better with A1)

The night ended with everyone safe at home, the coyote still alive and in the woods, and me with a cup of tea and my cat as I write this. First chickens, now coyotes. I wonder what else is going to get in front my car without being aware of its surroundings.

Updated: The Library

I started work on a story based on a memory my mother had back in Scotland growing up. I’m not sure how many of you knew that or how much any of you know about mom’s childhood. To say the least, I took liberties with the plot, but the essence of how she felt about The Library is accurate. When she used to tell me about the place I always saw it as something magical and alive. I hope that this first, very rough, very ugly draft catches some of that.

I’ll go through it about a hundred times more before I give her the finished piece and get her feedback on where I can fix the character development, but even after she saw the first crack at it when I had much less written down, she still was blown away. My goal is to get this in her hand, proofed, printed and hopefully published by her next birthday.

For those of you who would like to read the work as it gets hammered into shape, here’s the link to the perma-page. Any time I update you’ll see the alert in my feed stream. I hope you like it.

Pet Pictures 2014 (Plus Bonus Ghlaghghee Update)

Originally posted on Whatever:

Here’s Ghlaghghee resting in a papasan chair in the basement, which has, post congestive heart failure, become her favorite place to hang out. I’m fine with this because it’s only a few steps from the litter box, and given that the medicine we feed to her twice daily is a diuretic, this means that the incidence of Randomly Appearing Cat Pee is greatly lessened. Plus, she’s all comfy and cosy, and I like that. Sick kitty needs to be happy.

The good news is she’s still with us, which I would not have counted on a couple of weeks ago. The less good news is that for the rest of her life I’ll be shoving medicine down her throat twice a day, which means that two times daily she is very intensely pissed off at me for several seconds. Which is sad for both of us, but not as sad…

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A Note on New York Comic Con’s Anti-Harassment Policy

Originally posted on Whatever:

First, you literally cannot miss it — it’s on several human-sized signs right at the entrances to Javits Center (the other side of these signs say “Cosplay is not consent.” Second, the examples are clear and obvious and the policy is not constrained to only the examples — but enough’s there that you get the idea that NYCC is serious about this stuff. Third, it’s clear from the sign that NYCC also has a commitment to implementation and execution of the policy, with a harassment reporting button baked right into its phone app. This is, pretty much, how an anti-harassment policy should be implemented.

And as a result, did the floor of the Javits Center become a politically correct dystopia upon which the blood of innocent The True (and Therefore Male) Geeks was spilled by legions of Social Justice Warriors, who hooted their feminist victory to the rafters? Well, no…

View original 502 more words


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