In case you missed it: HBO took THREE attempts at a live video before they managed to melt the ice block down far enough to show us the premiere date. All told, six figures’ worth of people spent more than a half hour glued to Facebook and literally watching ice melt.

We got it, though! Season 7 of Game of Thrones premieres on July 16th, 2017!


A cat is not an old couch.

On Saturday, I adopted a second cat. I call her Lady Lavender, she’s about a year old, and she’s the sweetest, friendliest little kitty you’ve ever seen.

Lavender came to me from a friend of a friend. She was a stray living at a gas station and begging for food at a nearby laundromat. Her foster, Annie, found her at the gas station and asked the employees for permission to take her home, which they granted. By then, the cat was heavily pregnant, and gave birth to five kittens mere hours after Annie brought her home. She was happy to become an indoor kitty and took to eating about eight large cans of wet food per day while nursing her litter. It’s not that she was a big cat and needed all that protein in the long-term, but she was underweight and needed to fill out, in addition to having five babies to feed.

Anyway, Annie found people to adopt the kittens right away, but still had no home for the mama kitty, so she asked for help from her Ravelry friends. My friend Debbie shared her post on Facebook of this gorgeous little young mama tortie in need of a home, and I expressed interest. Annie got her spayed, let her rest for the week, and brought her to my house on Saturday afternoon. For now, I am site-swapping her and Purrion between a bedroom and the house at large until they get acquainted by scent.

You know what pisses me off? This cat was a stray until a few months ago, and she’s the farthest thing from feral. She’s affectionate, gentle and agreeable, which means she had to have been socialized by humans before she ended up on the street. Someone had this sweet little kitten in their home, and someone left her out on the street without first getting her spayed. She was left to beg for scraps for months, and she went through an entire pregnancy, before a nice human decided to take her home. Because she was lucky enough to have a good foster mom, her babies will not join a feral cat colony. Because she was a mostly-adult cat rather than a dainty kitten, it wasn’t easy to find her a permanent home.

For the love of Pete, folks, a cat is not just a thing you leave out on the front stoop when you need to make room for something else. This is a 20-year commitment, and there are options aside from chucking them out and hoping for the best. If you must surrender your cat, make sure it’s spayed/neutered first so it won’t create hundreds more cats with nowhere to go. If you must surrender the cat before you have a chance to get it fixed, surrender it to an animal rescue that’ll make sure it’s fixed and vaccinated and will make an effort to put the cat in a good home. Do not abandon an intact cat to fend for itself.

In which my cat is still outside.

I’ve made a bit of progress on my displaced indoor cat.

I took the day off work and spent about two hours just walking all over the neighborhood with Purrion’s favorite tassel toy. Didn’t see any sign of the cat, but my neighbors two doors up said they’d seen a “black streak” get chased under their back deck by another cat. 

Eventually, I went down to the police station, and the ladies in Communications helped to connect me with Animal Control. They have lent me a humane trap and wildlife camera, which are now set up in my backyard. The shelter folks say it generally takes a cat going hungry for 2-3 weeks before it’s desperate enough to walk into a trap, and I hate the idea of my cat being outside for that long, but if that’s what it takes to get him back in my house, then I’m glad for the trap.

A bit earlier this afternoon, after doing a bit of housecleaning, I went outside again and…I saw my cat. 

Of course he’s still not home with me. He’ll let me see him in daylight, but he won’t come close enough to touch him.

He seems to like hanging out under the back deck at the house two doors up from me, so, yes, that “black streak” getting chased under there by another cat was probably my Purrion. That yard is where he seems to be hanging out for the time being. I’ve approached a couple of times, and I managed to engage him a little bit with his favorite tassel toy, but he’ll only interact with me a very little bit before he pulls away again.

Anyway, he looks healthy, I have a good point of reference for his location, and I feel better for having seen him. The neighbors in that house have seen him, so we’re on the same page. He’ll come back to my house when he’s ready.

Now I can’t help but think back to that conversation I had with Bill at AAA Emergency Tree Service, in which he told me to get on with my day rather than pay hundreds of dollars for one of their guys to come over and get him out of the tree.

In a limited sense, Bill was right, in that Purrion did eventually come down from the tree. Unfortunately, he’s still out of my hands two days later. I would have gladly paid several hundred dollars to have him brought down from the tree and into my house, rather than spend all this time trying to get him back. I don’t know how many more days it’ll take before Purrion comes home. I don’t know how much longer he’ll go hungry before he’s back inside. I don’t know what kind of shape he’ll be in when he reaches the point of coming back to me. Yes, I would have happily paid for him to be professionally de-treed after only a couple of hours, rather than let him stay out in the neighborhood for an undetermined number of days. I would have paid that much to correct my mistake.

The ladies in Communications at my local police station are awesome. The nice people at the animal shelter are awesome. The guy who picked up the phone at the tree service, however? Not so much.

I will not make that mistake again.

Don’t worry, this isn’t about politics. It’s not about Game of Thrones, either.

It’s about my cat. I did something stupid, he got away from me, and now he’s stuck out in the cold.

Purrion is an indoor kitty, and I made the mistake of taking him out to my backyard. I won’t try to justify this dim-witted idea of super-fun leash-training in my backyard, only that I did not anticipate his response. Short story shorter, he freaked the fuck out like I was trying to kill him, he escaped his harness, and he ran up my maple tree.

I guess his carrier is the better option after all. Lesson learned! Now where the fuck is my cat and how do I get him back into my warm house in one piece?

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They’re giving me a mallet and I need a syringe.

I feel like I’m walking this tightrope between Xanax and coffee. If I don’t drink coffee at all, I’m non-functional. If I drink too much coffee too fast, I’m uncomfortable all day long.

(And of course if I don’t take the Xanax, I’m constantly on the edge of a panic attack.)

One of these days, I’ll figure out just the right schedule for taking my Xanax, and just the right amount of coffee to drink and the right pace to drink it. By then, maybe I’ll be free of panic disorder and I’ll only have to medicate for generalized anxiety.

I’m glad to have the Xanax for now, but I hope it isn’t a long-term thing. It works basically by hammering the nervous system down until it can’t cause any serious problems. I think I can do better than that.

(Right now I’ve had two cups of coffee for the day, and I’ve been struggling to stay awake since before 4PM.)


This is not encouraging.

As I’ve mentioned, my mental health has been trending downward in recent months, and I’m trying to get help. My old family doc has retired since I last saw him, so I paid a visit to his successor, who gave me a referral to a psychiatrist. But he didn’t tell me what I’d have to do to sign on as a new patient with this psychiatrist’s practice.

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In which I am indistinguishable from one of those crunchy health-purist types

Well, you guise, it seems this is the month when I spend a lot of time at medical appointments. I will count the dentist as a medical professional. I had what was the first of at least 3 medical-professional visits today.

Barring any ominous phone calls 7-10 days from now, I’ve got a good explanation for this weird GYN crap that’s been bothering me since the last visit from Aunt Flow, two prescriptions to clear it up, and that should be sufficient for the time being.

And this is the part where you’ll be glad I put this under a cut.
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In which I engage in Vague-booking on WordPress

Fuck me with a chainsaw and bugger me with a spear.

I see yet another upheaval happening in my circle of progressive queer/friendly atheists on Facebook. 

I’m not going into details, and I’m not getting involved. I’ve been trying to fight off a fresh bout of depression for the past couple of weeks, and I can’t afford any further strain on my emotional workload. 

You’re either capable of taking responsibility for your actions, or you’re not. After all the explanations, and all the mitigating factors, and all the who-did-what-to-whom and what kind of care people need in certain situations, after all those nuances are properly accounted for, that’s what it ultimately comes down to: you either are able and willing to take responsibility for your actions, or you’re not.

For the benefit of those who know of the situation I’m Vague-pressing tonight: I will stipulate that “taking responsibility” includes a position something like, “Even though I was literally incapable of behaving otherwise at the time because of (XYZ situation), I understand if (Person Being Harmed) doesn’t want me in their life anymore after the destruction I caused.” I’ll make room for us to acknowledge when destructive behavior is a symptom rather than a moral failure.

And with that allowance made: You’re either capable of taking responsibility for your actions, or you’re not. 

If you exhibit a pattern of behavior that demonstrates inability to take responsibility for your actions, then ultimately, people won’t trust you.