Random adventures through my life... in all their glory and splendor.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The True Spirit of Halloween

(This is not my cat, but I wish I had thought of it...)

Let me tell you why I like Halloween. It's a purely sadistic reason. Chris doesn't *think* she likes Halloween so I take it upon myself every year to convince her otherwise. We have our own Halloween ritual that goes something like this...

"I hate Halloween, gah..."
"I know honey... I'm not really excited about it either. Should I get some candy anyway?"
"Ugh. Why? So a bunch of teenagers who don't even bother to put on a costume can pander at our house? You can if you want, but you have to watch the door."
"Ok... I'll take care of it."

(four bags of candy later)

"Murf urf turf"

"Whoa aren't you spooky! Here's some candy."
"Why is that kid dressed in the Scream mask? He can't be older than seven. Did his mother actually let him watch that movie? What's wrong with these people?"
"I don't know baby. That movie's older than he is, I suspect those masks are cheap these days."
"This holiday is ridiculous."

"Twick or tweet"

"Aw... Here ya go little ninja. Hey Chris, you just missed the cutest little assassin."
"Sigh... you're just perpetuating the problem. If we don't feed them, they'll quit coming."
"Then I wouldn't get to watch this tiny unicorn with baggy legs wobble around!"
"Yeah, if you hurry you can see her try to climb our stairs"
"Oh! Hee-hee! Look! Here comes a little bumblebee!"

That's when I know I've got her. At least for a little while.

But also, just as importantly, if we hadn't been giving out candy, we wouldn't have met our neighbors right across the street (who we've just been watching with a condescending eye from behind our curtains for the last 6 months.) With one of the kids dressed in a Star Trek uniform, we probably should have known that we had things in common. Then the mom says, "Have you guys seen Babylon5? My husband loves that show," and it was like the heavens opened up for my wife. "I'm watching it right now in the other room!" Chris replied.

So yeah, if it turns out she knits, I'll probably never see my wife again, but at least I'll know where to find her.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

American History GenY

So I'm at our local movie rental place the other night looking for something "We both can watch" and I see two of my favorite teenage stereotypes; thin crazy haired boy and darkling lip-pierced girl. Yes, you know them. They looked exactly as you are picturing them in your head. Anyway, I'm at the checkout counter with 1408 (you know, because Stephen King is a fun-for-the-whole-family kind of guy) And I'm listening to this girl build her case for why she should be allowed to rent an R-rated movie without any of the following:
a) A card or account at the store
b) Being 18
c) Consent from anyone over 18 with an account

After the old "I've looked everywhere" line and the "I turn 18 in 2 weeks" argument, she fesses up that the movie she's been dying to see is American History X

Now this was honestly disturbing to me. Partially because I had totally blocked out how rattling that movie was, and it had completely fallen off any of my Top10 movie lists. For me, it was a powerful and effective movie, but it's a movie you shouldn't get excited about seeing. If you haven't seen it, the 2 cent summary is it's a Neo-Nazi movie about hate and redemption. But if you're anticipating ENJOYING American History X, then you aren't old enough to watch it. There. I've said it. I guess I'm old now. Back in my day, the cool kids had all seen Clockwork Orange against our parents wishes. But we were also reading it in English class... And if this girl, in all of her black eyeliner glory had been trying to charm out a Shindler's List DVD, I would have had the same reaction.

The other thing that bothered me was that I knew there was nothing I could say that would convince her otherwise. It's a heavy movie. Any form of "Wait" would have only strengthened her resolve. The girl behind the counter said No, and the situation was never really in my hands, but I couldn't think of anything I would have said other than, "No because I said so." That frustrates me. There should be a more convincing logic than that (not that "I'm the adult and ultimately I'm responsible" isn't a logical argument.)

So GothGirl, if you're reading, Go rent BoonDock Saints, or The Shining, or Fight Club or something else fun and naughty on your 18th birthday (whenever that may actually be.) Save AHX, Platoon, Memento, and Saving Private Ryan until picking up the DVD doesn't make you all giddy.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

My little Pestilence...

If you're a reader of Chris's blog, you're probably familiar with the 4 kittens we 'acquired' (read: found in our backyard) early this spring. The Kittens of the Apocalypse, (that would be Famine, Pestilence, War and Death,) have become a constant source of reward and frustration. As much as we enjoy the little fleabags, taking care of them comes with some sacrifice. For one, our backyard has become a big green, private litterbox, which isn't surprising given how much they eat. Also, I noticed that we don't have any birds this year, go figure. But lastly, Chris and I have done our best to stay emotionally distant from these strays. We know we can't take them in, and yet we also know that they won't make it through the winter without our help. So for the past 4 months we've gone back and forth about how much we were going to take care of these cats. To feed or not to feed? Do we get them neutered so we don't have 800 cats next year? What are we going to do in the winter?

So last Sunday, Chris and I get in the car to head to church and find that Pestilence had been hit by a car the night before. Let me just preface this with the fact that I had absolutely no intention of getting attached to this cat. It's an outdoor cat. Outdoor cats starve, freeze, or get hit by cars. Logically I know this, and I've seen her dart in front of my car in the driveway. I have even given myself the, "We'll take care of these cats as long as we can..." speech several times. But here's what makes Pestilences death so frustrating... of the 4 kittens, she was the one that we had nurtured the most. Over the summer months she went from staying 3 yards away to walking over my feet to get to the food. During her brief stay in our basement after being spade, she'd nuzzle and let us pet her. Oh, and we haven't even gotten that Visa bill yet either. Sigh... Twist that tiny dagger...

So this is the part where I learned more about myself than I want. I don't know where I thought death-coping skills came from, but I was reminded that I don't have any. I am apparently a sensitive sentimental dope who grieves uncontrollably for feral animals. So I buried this cat, in hopes of some form of closure and that maybe it'll be easier next time around.

I find it interesting to see how people react when you tell them that you're grieving, probably because I'm really self-conscious about how I react to other people's tragedies. One of my cat-hating friends gave me a genuine, "That sux, I'm sorry" which I appreciate on many levels. He could have joked or laughed. He didn't, that was a gift. I think one of my other friends, who also recently lost an outdoor cat, summed it up as, "No more cats for us, too much heartbreak."


(Really when else would I get to use this picture?)

So, in case you're wondering, we're batting a thousand on ironic names. War is the friendliest, Death is still alive, Famine is always the first to the food dish, and Pestilence never got sick.