Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hey, Firebirds-- maybe OJ's available right now, too.

An update to yesterday's post on the Albany Firebirds' offer to Michael Vick: the team is admitting today that it was, in fact, all a publicity stunt. And apparently the owner was left out of the loop on it.

There was a great article today in the local newspaper, the Times-Union. Here's my favorite part:

Earlier in the day, Firebirds coach Tony Bowick acknowledged the Vick offer was largely a publicity stunt for his 0-5 team.

"I just think it's to have people have something to talk about," Bowick said. "We haven't been giving them a reason to talk about us in a positive way, so hopefully this will keep everybody talking and keep everyone interested."

I'm sorry-- "talk about us in a positive way"? Positive, really? Where the merde is giving a dog beater and murderer $200 a week-- especially when a lot of good, hardworking people are getting laid off-- a positive thing?

Personally, what I'm hoping for is a major pull-out of sponsors, a clearing out of the marketing department and general manager by the team owner, and then the team doing several benefits for the Mowhawk & Hudson Humane Society.

I just can't believe how disgustingly vile, callous, and idiotic the team is being about this. All they seem to care about is how incredible it would be to have Vick on the team-- and how ridiculous it is to believe he would consider the offer because he's worth sooo much more.

WOW. Congratulations on being com.plete.ly out of touch. And congratulations on that humongous 70-26 loss on Saturday.

Please do keep it up.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

An 0-5 record could be the least of their problems...

I read today that the arena football team of my old town put in an offer for Michael Vick. Apparently they’re having a bad season and want to make some changes.


After the initial surprise of learning that Albany has an arena football team, I totally burned up. What the merde were they thinking?! Are they nuts? Is this, as AOA queries, a PR stunt? A really tacky, disgusting, IDIOTIC, unforgivable promotion?


And what the merde is wrong with them, thinking that making a donation to the local Humane Society would make everything okay? I remember that press conference that Vick gave right after his case, where it was sooooo freaking clear that he had no remorse for what he did-- even when he had to shell out $1m to take care of the dogs. I’m really hoping that prison did the trick, but I somehow doubt it. And I’m sure, even if he doesn’t have any scratch, that doling out $100,000 wouldn’t have any impact.


Even the executive director of the Mohawk & Hudson Humane Society said the money would be nice, but no thanks. He suggested that if he was to take the job, that he should get involved with the community instead and try to fight dogfighting.


After doing a happy dance that MHHS has a new director (I have bigtime issues with their last one), I cheered. What a great response! Personally, I’d like to see him get involved with a group out there called Pets are Wonderful Support (PAWS), a program through the Albany Damien Center that helps people living with HIV/AIDS take care of their pets when they are physically/financially unable to do so alone—that way, they can keep their pets when they need them the most. And I don’t mean “get involved” like giving money (though that would be nice), I mean actually meeting some people who can truly demonstrate the worth of having a pet and how much joy it can bring to one’s life.


So...


Dear arena football team I never knew existed:


Your stunt was stupid, your offer poorly thought, and in addition to losing games, you’re gonna lose some fans.


Besos,

The Human Female

Monday, April 27, 2009

I feel a disco song coming on...

A week ago this past Saturday, Alice, the Human Male, and I went to a dog wash fundraiser at Fur-Get Me Not, Alice’s dog school. The event was to benefit Homeward Trails, an animal rescue group here in the DC area. We didn’t know about Homeward Trails when we were looking for Alice, but since we’ve gotten her, we’ve learned they’re extremely active in the area—Yappy Hours at local restaurants and bars, a store and LaundroMutt, and regular adoption events (in fact, we went over to the Dog Store afterwards and Homeward Trails was doing an event there later in the afternoon). A number of people we’ve met have gotten their pets there, too.


It started at 9A, and by the time they got there at 9:20, there were about a dozen dogs signed up already. We spent maybe 5 minutes or so hanging out in the lobby, where we met Bernie, a loveable lug of a dog (who I believe might also be a Homeward Trails success story). If he wasn’t there with his owner, I absolutely would’ve taken him home. He was some kind of big mix with German Shepherd somewhere along the line, with funny ears and a concerned look on his face. He was precious. I bent down to pet him, and he came in for a snuggle. It was pretty funny—when he did that, Alice felt the need to come over and huff at him. It cracks me up when that little goofy puggle thinks she needs to act tough.


Alice and Bernie were taken out back at the same time, where there were about nine to twelve volunteers, towels, and hoses. Let me tell you, they were some of the cheeriest, kindest people I’ve ever met at 9A on a Saturday—and not a drop of caffeine in sight. I talked to one of the washers who’d gotten her dog from Homeward Trails and was giving back—I think it was an instance of people who are truly passionate about and dedicated to the organization. So wonderful! Too bad you can’t heat that up and pour it into a cup.



Not only did they treat Alice like gold, we brought a couple towel donations along (I’m still fixated on donating them), and they treated us like we were Ed McMahon’s people dropping off a giant check.


Alice came out clean, shiny, and fluffy (whatever soap they used was great), and I thought it was pretty cool to watch a couple of rescue dogs help other ones like them. I’m sure that they’d probably prefer to help in other ways than get a bath, but still.


One thing in particular cracked me up. FGMN is located near a Jiffy Lube and car wash. It didn’t quite register at first, but I realized that the dogs and the cars were getting the same kind of scrub-down. It was like a multi-tasking clean freak’s dream.



(In an interesting twist, I found out later in the week that there are actually places that cater to both in real life. Who knew?)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Izzy's fancy new sweater.

My mom takes a weaving class at a great yarn store called Threadbender. Julie, the owner of the store, was selling some of her knitting samples, and on Friday she gave my mom a fancy little dog sweater as a welcome back/don't ever run again gift.

Doesn't she look mahvelous?




Friday, April 24, 2009

As if introducing me to Torrontes wasn't enough...

Over the weekend I discovered yet another reason why The Curious Grape in Arlington, VA, is the best wine store around: they allow dogs!

And not only do they allow dogs, they luuuurrrve dogs. They said they have regular four-legged visitors and keep cookies at the counter.

We brought Alice in Tuesday night, and they were so nice to her. They told her that she was beautiful, and one of the employees bent down to say hi and Alice jumped all over her. I've never seen Alice respond like that to a stranger-- she's typically very timid. We were actually kind of embarrassed, but fortunately the woman was a huge dog person and loved it.

I love going to stores that allow dogs-- I'll very admittedly shop at them more frequently because of it. And I love seeing how Alice reacts in them. She's pretty normal at her Dog Store, but she always gives me this funny look when we go into "people" shops. An expression that clearly says, "Should I really be in here, human?"

Alice was really funny in the wine shop-- I got the distinct impression that she was leading us around. She must've thought it smelled interesting.

And for the record, Alice likes the Unusual Reds section.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Best Day EVER!

Fabulous news: guess who came home this morning? Izzy!


I was pretty excited to find out, so I’m not entirely certain this is how it really went, but I think this is what happened:


After not spotting her at all yesterday, a neighbor called up around 7A this morning, saying that her husband had seen her on his way to work and tried to catch her but couldn’t. Mamala bolted over to that area, but couldn't find her.


My mom ran into some neighbor ladies and asked if they had seen her. They said yes, she’s running circles around your house. Mamala called Pedro to see, but by the time he got out there, she was gone again. So Mamala started playing in the yard with Z and a toy, thinking that it might entice her to play if she was nearby. Izzy didn’t come, so at some point Mamala went back in the house. Then she walked into the garage and practically stepped on Izzy, who was waiting by the door.


Izzy was extremely happy to be home and to see my mom. I get the impression that she was looking expressly for her—in addition to being the person who feeds, plays, and snuggles with her, her little dummy brain may only have room to recognize one person.


I guess Izzy’s looking a little thin and was hungry and dirty, but still the same old Izzy. She immediately started playing with toys and nipped at Z when she tried to play with it, too. So Z may not be so happy that she’s back. Mamala took her to the vet, too-- save for her paws looking like she was walking on sticks, she's completely fine.


I know when I found out, my office became quite dusty. I can’t even begin to imagine how relieved my folks must feel right now. At the very least, I’m sure they feel like they could use a shower, some serious couch time, and some sleep.


I will not be calling my mother for the next 48 hours.


Something else I won’t be doing? At her request, I won’t be sending my mom any more pet-specific packages.


On Saturday, before I knew what happened, I sent my mom a box that included two ribbon-flowered collars and a toy for Izzy. The collars will now come in handy, as she lost hers, but this is now the second thing I’ve given my mom that was pet-specific, and the second time something has happened to that pet. Mamala says it’s okay to send presents to all of the pets, but not to single one out.


Trust me—I promise to never do that again.


Thanks very much to all of you who sent well-wishings for Izzy's safe return this week. It was so thoughtful and kind, and saying my family appreciated it doesn't even begin to cover it.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Studs with Pugs: Oh hey, Holmboy!

I'm a wee-bit superstitious.

I don't know if it comes from being a born and raised Cubs fan, or I'm just that OCD and am a big fan of finding patterns in things. Whatever reason, if some action brings a favorable/unfavorable result, then I'm going to keep doing it/not doing it.

Earlier this month, I used Studs with Pugs to appeal to Ted Danson to help get my friend a job. And it worked! She didn't take the job, but still. Then the week after, I appealed to DC to take out the
WTTHMG and help The Human Male get a job. And guess what? He got TWO last week!

Call me crazy, but it seems as if that the facts point to good things happening to those who relate to Studs with Pugs.

That being said...

Izzy's still hasn't come home. There have been a few spottings in the 'hood, and it sounds like the neighbors are being really helpful, calling whenever they see her and letting my folks set up live traps to catch her in their yards. But she's scared, not thinking clearly, and not coming home when the opportunity arises.

Needless to say, my whole family's extremely upset. We just want her home.

While I was going through my pictures to find some of Izzy to post, I came across one of my all-time favorite pictures of my brother Pedro. It struck me as a perfect Stud with Pugs offering. And I decided that I don't want to wait until Friday to post it.

So behold-- it's your Stud with Pugs of the week: Pedro.


Let me just say, I freaking love this picture. It's such a wonderful candid moment.

The Human Male and I been trying to figure out what Power That Is could be appeased with this one. St. Anthony was on the table, but it ends up that The Human Male's mom has him on speed-dial-- he's gotten a few calls this week. So then we were thinking that maybe we could appeal to Michigan, showing a local staring out a window into its loveliness. And then maybe persuade it to have a little earthquake-- small enough not to do any damage, but strong enough to shake Izzy from wherever she is, scoot her into the house, and shut the door.

Still, that doesn't seem right. So I'm not going to try. Instead, I'm going to tell you about Pedro.

I will openly admit that I occasionally have a hard time realizing that Pedro's not 14. I know this may sound insulting, but I actually pictured him as a six-year-old obsessed with Ninja Turtles, wearing too-short Donatello pajamas like these and insisting we call him Leonardo (pronounced closer to "Eedo-ado" than how it's spelled) until a few years ago. So maybe this is not so bad. But like in pretty much every insurance commercial out there right now, when Eedo-ado starts talking about driving to campus, the philosophy class he's taking, his Blackberry, or the fancy beer he just tried, I'm brutally reminded that he's actually an adult. A real live adult.

And a pretty cool one at that.* Pedro's a history major, has a great sense of humor, a good group of friends, and regularly sees hip, hot movies before I do. Can I tell you how excited I was a year ago when we both happened to see Cloverfield on the same day, at the same time? Holy cow, I felt so cool, I immediately called up Mamala and told her that Pedro and I were related after all.

He also kind of looks like House. Much more than he looks like our sister C-Bond or me.

Pedro claims he hates the dogs, that he's more of a cat person. Watching him with his cat "The Sweez" over the years, I'd believe it. He loves her to bits and pieces, and she acts like he's the best thing since canned cat food.


But then I see how he is with Z, Iz, and Harry, and I realize that he's a humongous, giant liar.**

So I guess I'd like to use this post not so much as an appeal, but maybe more of an addendum to all of the wonderful prayers, thoughts, well-wishings, and effort people have been sending my family's way the past few days. Even people who claim to hate dogs give Izzy this good of a life. I think that's a sign she doesn't deserve to be scared, cold, and lonely. She needs to be come home now.


*We'll overlook that he's not gallant enough to trade his lame new Mustang for my super awesome 12-year-old Cavalier.


**I'd like to point out to Mamala that I'm not. So obviously I should be your favorite child.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Izzy Update.

A couple of my parents' neighbors found Izzy and put her in the garage tonight. Unfortunately, the back door was opened (in case she found the backyard and wanted to come in) and she ran back out. My dad saw her at the neighbor's house and got within 15 feet of her, but she's frantic and took off again-- in the direction of the house, but she never arrived there.

They're hoping that she's somewhere near the house, so when my folks called, they were sitting on the front step with food, her favorite squeaky toy, and Harry and Z, in hopes she'll come to her senses and come home.

If you're in the Cascade/Grand Rapids/Thornapple River Drive area, please continue to keep an eye out for her!

Please help!

I just talked to my mom and found out that her pug Izzy ran after some deer around 9A yesterday (Saturday, April 18th) and they haven't been able to find her. They live in the Thornapple River Drive area of Cascade in Grand Rapids, Michigan and are desperate to find her.

These are the most recent pictures I have of her, taken at Christmas. She's on the left in the center one:




Here are some more. She's on the right in the first one and in the front in the third:





They've contacted the cops, their vet (Cascade Hospital for Animals) and other local ones, and the local shelters, but it sounds as if the shelters are closed on the weekend.

I don't think any regular readers live there, but if any of you have any connections, can you please pass this along to them?

Izzy's 2 years old, about 16-18lbs (kind of small for a pug), very barky, and may be acting tough but is actually
really afraid. She was wearing a pink collar with ribbon flowers and my parents' contact information is on the tag. She IS also microchipped.

Thank you for your help!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Mod Dog, or Why Etsy Will be the End of my Bank Account.

So I recently discovered the joy of Etsy. Martha Stewart is my crafting guru, so I've known about it for a while. But a few weeks ago I actually went on there and started poking around.

Let me just say, it's like a WMD to my bank account.

Their daily e-mails are sooo incredibly aggravating,and not in the way you'd expect. Without fail, they come right into my mailbox with these fun little finds from different dealers. I can't tell you how many times already I've seen things that I didn't even know I needed. It's even worse when you find something you were actually looking for-- or when Daily Candy double-teams and gangs up on you, too. Ugghhh!

It's so bad, I've started playing a game with myself: I try to make it through a full e-mail without falling in love with anything. I always get so close, but it's always that last one or two items they show that really get me. I think I've gotten through three in the past month where I didn't have to clean a puddle of drool off my keyboard.

Anyway, a few weeks ago I discovered Mod Dog from a Twitter feed I follow. I clicked on the link, and that was the end of me.

Mod Dog makes wonderful little tags, jewelry, and stationery-- all dog-related. I fell in head over heels in love with the copper dog tags. I was looking for a tag for Alice's harness, and after seeing the skull and crossbones one, I knew it had to be that one.

There was one additional item they had on their site that I knew I needed: a little silver tag with a heart that says "Rescue". I thought it was so incredibly sweet, but then I read the description. Part of the proceeds go to animal rescue programs in Minnesota.

I have to say, right about then I noticed how dusty my house had gotten.

For nine years while I was growing up, my family lived in Minneapolis. When I was about twelve, my family adopted a kitten from a rescue. Before then, I never even knew that no-kill rescues existed-- I thought it was just high-kill shelters and pet stores. It was a pretty cool concept to me. We named the cat Daisey, and we had her for sixteen years.


She was one of those legendary great cats-- chubby, social, thought she was a human and would do things like sit at the dinner table with us. But Daisey was very much a cat, through and through: persnickety, occasionally aloof, and definitely better than us mere mortals.

Daisey passed away about six months before we got Alice, and I thought getting the Rescue tag for Alice was a nice way both to celebrate her as a shelter dog and to honor Daisey by supporting the great types of programs that brought her to us.

I ordered both tags, they came stupid fast, and they're so freaking adorable. The name tag is so cute, I actually put it on her collar instead of her harness. It's also oxidizing beautifully.


The rescue one did go on Alice's harness, and it makes the sweetest little tinkle sound when she walks around.


It makes me smile any time we go for a walk, so proud of my rescued pets, and so thankful for the wonderful people who work to find great animals like Daisey and Alice find homes.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Studs with Pugs: The Hot Reason why I was Wrong About Puggles.

First, a note:

My coworker Erin walked into my office today. While we were talking, my phone rang-- it was The Human Male. When The Human Male calls me, the picture of George Clooney and the pug pops up. So I showed it to her, and she goes, "Oh, is that from your Studs with Pugs blog?"

Erin, I must add, is completely freaking brilliant. And I'm pretty ashamed I didn't think of that name. So I'm changing the name from Hot Men Holding Pugs to Studs with Pugs.

Now, onto business.

It's a semi-dark secret that I never wanted a puggle. I was actually vehemently against getting a puggle. Let me explain...

Basically, I don't like the idea of a "designer dog". I really don't think that people should be playing with genetics to get a certain "look", especially with two such dissimilar breeds. Get two puggles together and you'll see two different dogs-- they just don't standardize well. I've also read things about the different problems they can have if hastily bred-- a pug's short nasal passages with the desire to run, limb deformities, etcetera. Even Alice, who got all the good parts of both the pug and beagle, has a foot that turns in a little. I just don't think it's fair to the dog.

I hated how when they first came on the scene, there was a big hoopla around them. I hated how a dog became "chic". A dog is not a handbag, people.

I was particularly upset when I saw this picture:

Helena's Hubpages site has some pretty interesting dog postings. Check it out!

Oh, Jake Gyllenhaal. Hottie heartthrob to millions of people around the world! And what a cute dog with such a cute name! Look at that little irresistible kicky monster! Ohhh, and the super sexy Blackberry, too!

So delicious. Yet so rife with distaster. And I just don't mean trying to Blackberry avec puggle-- which, for the record, should never be attempted. Just trust me on that one.

No, I got worried that people would get puggles just on the off chance that they might run into Mr. Gyllenhaal walking down the street.

"Oh, my! You have a puggle, too!" Crazy Fan would say, fanning themselves like an old Southern Belle in a movie.

"Why, yes! I do. What a coincidence! Want to get married?" Jake would reply, smitten as a kitten.

Yeah, not gonna happen. When it didn't, the hyper little dog with the passion to run despite his stumpy leg and the short nasal passages would end up not looking so cute anymore, and he'd end up in a shelter.

So I had these feelings about puggles. And then I actually met one, and they're perfect. And I met puggle people, none of whom have fit that frou-frou mold. They've all been very down to earth, easygoing, and patient as all get-out.

So I stand here, corrected. I was very, very wrong about puggles.

Now, Jake. Wanna have a puggle meet-up at the Park?

Monday, April 13, 2009

See? North Siders and South Siders CAN get along!

Alice's blog friend Mr. Puggle wrote a nice little post about All About Alice over the weekend. Thanks so much for the kind words, Mr. Puggle-- and thank you to all of you who have stopped by from his page!

I thought about returning the favor and recommending everyone visit Mr. Puggle's website and check out his cute pictures, videos, and his owner's company. But given that I'm a North Sider and today is a very special day in my homeland (Cubs Home Opener), I've decided to thank Mr. Puggle in another way:

The White Sox beat Detroit 10-6 today.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Hot Men Holding Pugs: Back off, Ladies-- This One's Mine.

I have some good news—last week’s groveling to Ted Danson worked! Well, sort of. My friend has one more interview on Monday with the organization I bribed—nay, pandered to heavily last week. The only catch: she’s having an embarrassment of riches, as she got two other job offers this week in New York and is now in the bind of having to give word on those before finishing the interview for the job down here. It’s the most unenviable of enviable positions. As much as I want her down here, the other job she’s considering in New York is a great opportunity. I’m just really happy to see that she’s got some bright spots on her horizon.


Since last week worked out pretty well, I’ve now decided to appeal to the Gods of DC and have this week’s Hot Man Holding a Pug be a Native Son—or practically as much of one as you can be in DC. Pretty much no one who lives here is a “native”. It’s true—you’re an old-timer if you’ve been here three years or longer. When you meet a local, they actually introduce themselves as “….and I’m from here, from here.” So let us begin.


The Cherry Blossom Festival is going on for a few more days here, and peak was last week. If you haven’t seen it before, the city is beautiful. Everything’s pink, fluffy, and smells fresh and clean. Save for riding the train when there’s 8 million tourists and Metro decides to cut down on service because Congress is in recess, I really love this time of year.


Last weekend, my friend took pictures of The Human Male, Alice, and me by the marina with the cherry blossoms. After looking through the ones she sent, I realized we have one in the deck that’s a real winner.


Without further ado: ladies and gentleman, behold this week’s Hot Man Holding a Pug(gle)… it’s The Human Male!



Okay, so he’s not technically holding her, but let’s not forget the real point of this feature: gawking at hot men.


And obviously, The Human Male is quite the looker. You have to be looking at an entirely different website not to be able to tell. Even with his face squinched up, dog tongue affixed to his forehead (a normal position for The Human Male and Alice), you can still see the preternatural handsomeness that has caused Daniel Craig, Brad Pitt, Taye Diggs, George Clooney, Anderson Cooper, and Ted Danson to form a club called “We’re Threatened by The Human Male’s Gorgeousness” (WTTHMG).


Never heard of WTTHMG? Well, let me tell you about them, then. WTTHMG has weekly meetings, wherein they drink gin gimlets, have their Valentino suits altered, and do the twist in their nouveau-1950’s style bachelor pad clubhouse, all while talking about how to keep The Human Male from ruining their livelihoods.


They’ve failed in many ways. For example, they have been unable to have our apartment complex close the gym "for renovations", so The Human Male has been able to maintain his glorious physique. They have also been unable to deactivate his Metro card, so I can gallivant all around town, wearing him as arm candy.


Unfortunately, three of their campaigns have been successful:


  1. They have convinced all grocery stores in the area except for one not to carry tamarind paste, so he can’t always make his legendary Pad Thai. And for the one store that does carry it, WTTHMG buys it all out every week.

  1. They are in cahoots with the editors at People and have persuaded them not to crown him the Sexiest Man Alive.

  1. They have secretly flown in thousands of additional people to apply for all of the jobs to which he’s applied in town, which has exhausted HR people in organizations and companies throughout DC and have caused them to start choosing their new employees by pasting resumes to the wall and throwing a dart.

I’m working on a Plan B for #1 (as shaking my fist at the store shelf hasn't been effective to date) and I have my people calling People right now, but I think #3 might need a little extra help. This is where DC fits in.


Thus, let the groveling begin:


Dear Washington, DC:


I hope this letter finds you well, with a manageable amount of tourists, tolerable humidity and a few days free of politicians.


I know you're a fan of Alice's blog, and you've probably heard of the Hot Men Holding Pugs Friday Feature. In previous posts, the Chosen One has been what some may call "super-delicious".


Sure, a pretty face goes a long way. But really: what's the only thing better than someone with monumental gorgeousness? How about a place full of gorgeous monuments. Eh? Sound like any place you know?


By featuring a Native Son for this week’s Hot Men Holding Pugs offering, I’d like to appeal to you to help out one of your own fabulous specimens. Please consider putting in a WTTHMG-impenetrable forcefield around the city limits, blocking out their private jets full of job-sucking decoys, which would allow for The Human Male to get a job.


Not only will this be beneficial for keeping us on top of our ever-increasing rent and such startling handsomeness in the area, the sooner The Human Male gets a job, the sooner he’ll be able to start working up the employment ladder. And as he gets more and more responsibility in his job, he will, of course, hire only people on his level of beauty to work with him.


Compelled by their hotness and success, other companies and organizations will follow suit. Thus giving DC the highest number of Sexy Beasts per capita than anywhere in the world.


Because really-- when compared to the WTTHMG’s six measly members, doesn’t an entire metropolitan population of Hot Men sound better?


Thank you for your time and consideration.


Besos,

The Human Female

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Toast with the Most.

Alice will do anything for toast.

She'll beg. She'll sit nicely. She'll bore into your soul with greedy little eyes. She'll give you the sad puggle face. Sometimes she'll just jump up and steal it from you.

Today I was reading Daily Candy's e-mail and learned about the Bread Art Project. What you do is you go to their website, choose a piece of bread, upload a picture and adjust, and then it "toasts" the bread in accordance to your picture.

Immediately, I thought of Alice.

It took a couple different pictures, but I got one to work (it's best to try one with a light, plain background):


I don't know why this amuses me so much, but I've been cracking up all day over it.

While the picture's really fun, the best part of this is that if you hang it in the "Gallery", a dollar gets donated to Feeding America (formerly known as America's Second Harvest).

A fun little time-waster that does good? I'm all over it like butta.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Talk about Comic Relief...

I'm not a fan of PETA-- they're a bit too dramatic and sensational for my liking. But they did something recently that cracked me up: they asked the Pet Shop Boys to change their name to the Rescue Shelter Boys.

Now, I'm pretty certain the last time the Pet Shop Boys were relevant can be counted in decades, but this is priceless.

One might say it's "Absolutely Fabulous".

Hey, where's my rimshot?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Dreams of a Shelter Dog.

Most of the time, it’s very easy to forget that Alice was ever not a member of our family. Typically the “Oh, that’s right” moment happens when we notice that half our dinner is missing, step over a little dragon hoard in the middle of the living room, wake up to find that you’re sharing your pillow, or even the times when we realize we’ve accepted the fact that we’ll never get to use the entryway rug as a rug ever again. It’s always like this tiny blip of a moment when we step outside of the situation and remember that there was a time when we had full plates, full pillows, an unobstructed walkway, and home d├ęcor. They’re typically followed by wondering long it took us to notice that dinner’s missing, Alice has my side of the bed, or the huge mess in front of the TV.


Occasionally, though, we get a sharp reminder that Alice has a past. It’s times like when we talk about something “stupid” around her and her cheery face falls, when people on the street walk behind her and she jumps in our laps, or when a loud motorcycle or car drives by and she cowers by our feet, her curly tail drooped in a j-shape.


Every once in a while, there are moments when the reminder isn’t her reaction, but rather a completely unsuspecting. mundane scenario. Last night was one for me.


Alice beat The Human Male and me to bed last night. We had a long afternoon of taking pictures with my friend at the cherry blossoms, and it wore her out. While I was getting my pjs on, she brought her blanket and Frankengiraffe to bed, then snuggled up with them and fell asleep.



I’ve seen Alice in bed hundreds of times before, but last night it actually stopped me in my tracks. She looked different than normal. First off, she was actually asleep, not just faking it until she knew she wasn’t going to be put in her crate. And second, she wasn’t jumping on The Human Male’s head—one of her favorite bedtime activities. Her expression was so peaceful, so content. Alice looked as if she felt safe and found the place in the world where she belonged—in a cushy bed with her humans and her prized possessions. It made me wonder what she was dreaming about.


It also made me think about how just nine months ago, she didn’t have a bed, humans, toys, or a blanket of her own. She was out on the street, fending for herself. We know she didn’t have anything then. But before that point, did she have humans, let alone ones that loved her? Did she get regular meals, let alone healthy ones? Did she have a favorite toy or a place she could call a bed? Was she in a situation where she felt safe and relaxed?


A lot of the evidence points in one direction: Alice has scars, was picked up as a pregnant stray without any identification (no collar, microchip, or tattoo), gets scared when people stand in a circle around her, and gets manic when we return home—like she never expected it to happen. But there are certain things that point in another: how sweet and loving she is, the fact that she was potty-trained (or picked it up quickly), her uncanny ability to learn new tricks, and her love for kids.


I’d really like to think that, whatever her past is, someone somewhere along the line took care of her for a time, but wasn’t equipped to do it forever. Mainly because I can’t fathom her getting treating badly up until this point in her life. I also have hope that maybe Alice can understand that the bad times were a once-off, temporary thing. That things will be okay from now on.


And this may sound strange, but I do also hope that the person (fictitious or not) she was with in her past chooses to believe that she’s okay now; that she’s a valued member of a family, has a full belly and a basketful of toys, and sleeps safely and soundly each night in a warm bed.


Whoever you are, and whether you exist or not, I promise you: we've got it covered from here.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Hot Men Holding Pugs: Cheers!

I’ll admit it: today’s Hot Men Holding Pugs post has an ulterior motive.


A good friend of mine in New York is in the process of interviewing for a job down here in DC. She’s had an interview and a coffee date so far, and loves the organization. I would love to have her down here—it'd mean I'd imported one member of the Urban Family and would only have three more to go!


The organization with whom she is interviewing has Ted Danson as a Board Member and is one of their celebrity spokespeople. And wouldn’t you know it, one of the links Mamala sent me for pictures happened to have Ted Danson listed as a pug owner. And lo and behold, there are pictures out there!


So I’m posting Ted Danson as this week’s Hot Man Holding Pugs offering. If not to appease the Powers that Be in the HR Department to hire my friend, pay her lots of money, and to let her work civilized hours, then to appeal to that Silver Fox Ted Danson to put in a good word for her.


Ladies and gentlemen, behold this week's Hot Man Holding a Pug:


Downloaded from Fetchdog.com-- now go shop!


Beyond being a looker, let me tell you about the good work that Ted Danson has done:


First, he works with an organization that supports ocean conservation. Who's going to argue that an ocean isn't anything but the most perfect place on the planet?


Second, he advocates for Little Angels Pug Rescue, whose mission is to "make sure that every pug has a loving home". Ohhh! And look at those little sweethearts on their homepage (also, check out the posters-- that pugarita one is mine). How could someone who supports a pug rescue be anything less than a saint?


Third, he must a good person, as he’s married to Mary Steenburgen, who is beautiful, a great actress, and was fantastic in Elf. A classy lady like that would obviously only associate with a classy man. Am I right, or am I right?


Fourth, lest we not forget that he donated money anonymously for a wing at the NRDC Centre on Curb Your Enthusiasm.


Thank you, Mr. Danson, for all the good you do. You naturally and effortlessly embody the spirit, tenacity, and dignity required to be recognized as a Hot Man Holding a Pug. Congratulations.


Speaking of which, you know who else is spirited, tenacious, dignified, and into doing good, Ted? Let me introduce you to my friend...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Alice takes it to the mattresses.

Alice has giraffe toy puppet. We bought last fall after a trip to the dog store, wherein I proceeded to play with it for my own amusement (including biting The Human Male’s nose with it*) and then promptly spilled my soy latte on it. It wasn’t a huge mess and the store didn’t care, but I felt guilty and bought it. I then hoped that Alice would enjoy it as much as I did.


She did. Within days, she bit both ears and horns off, then ripped the stitching out straight across his head and started pulling the stuffing out. So it went onto the shelf of other battered toys with fluff leaking from their bodies until a day when I could sit down and stitch them all back up.


A few weeks ago, her toy bin was looking a little low and there was stuffing all over the house. I decided it was time. Alice and I sat on the couch and watched Psych, and sewed up all of her babies. She was thoroughly confused as to why one, I was actually sitting for once and not running around; and two, why she wasn’t allowed to play with her toys when she was sitting right there. She finally passed out from frustration, and woke up to an overflowing toy basket. It was like Dog Christmas.


She became reacquainted with her old favorite toys, including the giraffe. Well, now it’s more like Frankengiraffe. I’d kept the ears and horns for a while, but then decided I was never going to get around to fixing her toys and tossed them. So now it kind of looks like a creepy giraffe-print snake dreamed up in a mad scientist’s lab. But the unpleasing aesthetic is lost on her. Alice loves Frankengiraffe.


Alice loves Frankengiraffe so much, it’s become one of the more commonly-toted toys (along with Babyman, her boombox, Mousie, tennis balls, her blanket, and the entryway rug). She also likes to play games with him—she’ll hide him somewhere, run away, and then come back and act like she unearthed a great treasure. We find him in funny places—under chairs, sticking out from under the bed, in the bathroom, in the closet.


This morning I woke up from a pleasant night’s sleep and rolled over. I felt something lumpy and a little bit gooey underneath me. I pull up the blankets to find the giraffe head in my bed, soaked in drool.



The first thought that popped into my mind: The Godfather. But with dog toys.


*For everyone who thinks I harass The Human Male too much, I would like it to be noted for the record that his favorite game with Alice is to put her tennis ball on me when I’m laying down and have her jump on me.

Could it be... a good story about pit bulls?

I was reading the Express, one of DC's commuter papers, on my way into the office on Monday morning. And what did I come across? Why, this article:

Let me just say, I practically fell out of my seat. I was SHOCKED to finally see a positive pit bull article. Shocked, and completely thrilled.

What a good girl!