Wednesday 10 a.m.

Filed under: @ 4:15 pm

Author’s note: For some reason I didn’t post this last Wednesday. Likely because we did fly to Kona and for some peculiar reason that Andrew understands and I don’t, Sara’s cable internet speed is LOUSY (like 56K dial-up modem lousy) and I didn’t bother to do any writing at all for three days. Keep reading, I’ll catch y’all up.

There wasn’t an awful lot going on this morning at 10 a.m. It was a late and lazy, sit-around-the-living-room-drinking-coffee sort of morning supplemented by malasadas from Agnes’ bakeshop.

And since we’re flying out to Kona tomorrow to spend the holiday at Sara and Danny’s place, we got some packing done, I took a quick soak in the pool (it’s finally stopped raining) and Andrew went to do some updating on Lucy’s computer. That was about 11:30. It’s just before 4p.m. now and he’s still at it.
Me, I had a lovely nap, I read my book, and I may walk down to the beach to read my book and have a nap.
I promise we’ll get more interesting tomorrow.


Tuesday 10 a.m.

Filed under: @ 5:52 pm

I didn’t get a chance to take any a.m. photos today because at 10 a.m. I was cleaning the house in preparation for Dawn & David’s arrival.
What with Shelley

(an old friend of Meg and Libby’s) and her husband who are visiting, Meg’s new squeeze Judd, and all the rest of the family we had 12 people for dinner last night. The dining table is expandable, but it isn’t that big and since Dawn & David

came in all unknowing to add to the genial bedlam this afternoon we absolutely needed the second dining table on the lanai since the little wobbly card table will only take so much. God knows how many outliers we’re going to have this evening.
So this morning we were cleaning, this afternoon we went to the airport to retrieve Dawn & David from the six or seven hour hell of a trans-Pacific flight (actually Hawaiian is mostly flying Airbus A330s which are pretty danged comfortable) and this evening….
Well, we’re still hoping that Peppino’s will actually be able to produce pizza for us. Since they took close to 3 damn hours to make pizza for us the last time we were here I don’t share Andrew’s optimism.
It’s hot, but at least it’s not raining. Actually it’s not really that hot, only about 75F, but there’s about a 96% humidity and it’s damp.
Damn, I don’t think I’ve been completely dry since we left Seattle on Friday. I think I may have to go and jump in the pool. It won’t make me any less damp, but at least I won’t care that I’m vaguely moist.
By the way, Caitlin introduced me to the idea that the word “moist” should be an onomatopoeia. I think it’s a lovely idea myself, run your finger down window covered in condensation and the sound it’ll make will be MOIST. Andrew disagrees, but I think it’s a great idea.


40 Days and 40 Nights. Or Monday 10 a.m.

Filed under: @ 7:45 pm

Well, only really two so far, but it’s still pretty damn wet. It’s not bucketing down like it was yesterday, but it’s still raining pretty good.
An early morning, okay 9:30 trip to Savers, the Hawaiian version of Value Village, for senior discount day replaced the Saturday garage sales since it was way too sleepy Saturday morning to go out garage saling.
Some remarkably tacky ticky tacky conveniently close to the Lion Coffee outlet netted me a new $3.00 tablecloth and a Robert Asprin book that I hadn’t read yet. Photos of the ticky tacky are on my phone, but Andrew is currently wound up about calling Peppino’s to order some pizza so it’s unlikely I’ll be able to convince him to figure out how to pull those photos off of that card before I want to post this.
Andrew and David (who is currently hanging in Las Vegas waiting to fly out tomorrow morning) made out a lot better since Joan and I went and purchased something like 10 pounds of coffee.
We came home for a wee lunch and to join the males of the party, most of whom had firmly and frequently declined to join us at Savers. Can’t really say as I blame them too much. 🙄

Andrew, Meg and I decided on a trip to Ho’omaluhia. With much debate and about half a gallon of bug spray, the three of us were joined by Caitlin and Lucy. We lost Meg when we met up with her new squeeze, Judd, and it started to rain. Judd and Meg decided that there were far better things for them to do than to wander around in the rain so the four of us soldiered on.
It wasn’t really raining when we got out of the car and started walking down to the lake. But it started to sprinkle. Then it started to spit. Then it started to drench.
And the four of us, accompanied by a box of stale Triscuits, and a bag of stale sesame rice chips, squedged down to feed the ducks. I don’t know that Caitlin and Lucy had ever fed ducks before so we had a good deal of fun. I was feeding coots straight from my hand and Caitlin was convinced that they were going to bite me.

Suffice to say that the ducks, geese (or goose as the case may be), and coots all enjoyed the stale gunk a heck of a lot more than humans would have.
And none of us got chomped my mosquitoes until we got back to the car.


Sunday 10 a.m.

Filed under: @ 11:29 pm

I collapsed last night. I remember seeing the clock at about 7:30 and I remember Andrew coming in and telling me to put my book down and go to sleep, but that’s about it.
My internal clock chimed at about 3 a.m., but it was dark and I was wearing ear plugs and I turned over and went back to sleep.
I woke up again at just before 7 because Andrew had a leg cramp and bolted out of bed. And I could hear…. well something….. through my ear plugs.
Not the window AC unit, it doesn’t make that much noise.
No, not the fan. Andrew shut it off before he came to bed last night.
Am I wearing my i-pod?
Nope, no wires.
What the hell is it that I can hear through my ear plugs?
Ye gods and little boarlets, it’s RAIN!!
And rain.
And rain.
And rain.
And rain.
And rain.
Did I mention it’s been raining?
Last night when we were in the pool there was at least 6 inches between the pool deck and the water.
This morning the pool was brim full. Tony and Vinnie got the drains draining before it overflowed completely, but even now, 4-5 hours later it’s pretty full up again.
Andrew and I went on a grocery run, we needed to get cake and other goodies for Tony’s birthday, and I have NEVER gotten so wet going from the car to a building.
Of course it’s rare that it’s warm enough for me to not care that I’m getting soaked, let alone that the rain is warm enough for me to not find paths around puddles, but I have really never seen it rain like this. I was literally dripping. Dripping on the floor. Dripping in the supermarket. Dripping in Tony’s Scion (which is a really nice little car for the record).
We’ve not done anything monumental today, it’s been too damn wet.
But when Andrew wakes up we may go wandering down to the beach and splash in puddles. My hair’s only just dried out again, but meh. What’s the difference. It’s humid enough that my hair never really dries anyway. The photos aren’t really very good because I literally couldn’t keep the lens dry for long enough to get a photo.

By 1000 p.m. (okay, it’s 9:30) it’s pretty much stopped raining, but it bucketed down all day. There’s drips from the ceiling, there’s puddles on the lanai, there’s erosion in the back yard, and there were ducks bathing in puddles at the ends of peoples’ driveways.
We had a lovely birthday dinner for Tony with two chocolate cakes one with 8 candles and the other with 1 candle. Tony has yet to decide whether he’s 81, 18, or 9.
I hope it doesn’t pour again tomorrow.


Yeah, I needed that.

Filed under: @ 6:46 pm

Friday 10:00a.m.

Saturday 10:00a.m.

Well, okay, technically those are both white lies.
The photo on Friday was taken more like 11 a.m. and it’s about 4:30 right now and I only just took the Saturday photos, but that’s because I’m not entirely sure that I was awake at 10:00 this morning.

It was thoroughly surreal.
I spent yesterday morning at work with people asking me when we were leaving and getting all gape jawed when I said “This afternoon.”
It was bright and sunny and cold-ish and I was really, really, REALLY glad that I could leave at noon.
Left at noon. Ran around the house, changing clothes, finishing the suitcase, and trying, with limited success, to soothe ruffled kitty feelings.
We spent about 90 minutes at the airport waiting for our flight to board. It was dark when we boarded.

I don’t like flying at night, I like to be able to see at least a little bit. So I took a Xanax. Also I tend towards motion sickness so I had a scopolomine patch. And, well, I’m on vacation so I indulged in some fire water with dinner.
It was thoroughly surreal.

I got on an airplane in Seattle when it was dark. When we landed some interminable time later it was dark. In between times I don’t remember much. But dark and loopy in Seattle is very similar to dark and loopy in Honolulu. So I got home from what was a REALLY long day at work, went to bed, and when I woke up I was in Hawaii.

I don’t think I’ve had a single serious thought all day. The biggest decision I’ve had to make was what to eat for lunch. The most monumental, life changing conflict I’ve had to resolve was whether to ease myself into the pool (which was a little chilly) or to jump in all at once.

After almost two weeks of working full time and evaluating resumes and applicants for our part time DVM position I really needed this.


How Best to Clean Coffee off of an LCD Monitor….

Uncle AndrewUncle Andrew
Filed under: @ 1:31 pm

I listen to a lot of talk radio while I work. Well, that’s not completely true any more; I used to listen to a lot of talk radio, but given the gradual rightward shift of KIRO Radio’s daytime talk demographic since the September 11 attacks, my consumption has dropped considerably. At this point I’m down to three hours of the Dave Ross Show from 9–12, with the balance dedicated primarily to NPR and DVRed editions of the Rachel Maddow Show with a sprinkling of KPTK Seattle thrown in for seasoning. I happen to like Ross’ dry humor and formidable mind quite a bit, and having recently added local podcaster and occasional Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me panelist Luke Burbank to the show gives the show a nice new flavor as well. And anyway I was told that I could listen to the radio at a reasonable volume from nine to eleven, I told Bill that if Sandra is going to listen to her headphones while she’s filing then I should be able to listen to the radio while I’m collating so I don’t see why I should have to turn down the radio because I enjoy listening at a reasonable volume from nine to eleven.

Sorry, couldn’t resist. 😀

This post isn’t really about the show(s) I listen to but about an ad campaign that has been running on KIRO for a few weeks now. KIRO must be having problems securing sufficient ad revenue, because recently they’ve been running these really lame promos for themselves during the program I listen to and, presumably, the ones that precede and follow it. In them the voiceover attempts to paint a word-picture. I haven’t recorded or transcribed any of these ads but I can give you the gist of it:

“[Hard working, family-minded Washingtonian] is hard at work [doing something productive for his/her health/family/career]. [He/She] needs to [pick up the kids after school and run them to dance class/finish the big report by noon/keep him/herself fit and healthy for his/her loved ones], and he/she doesn’t know [how he/she is going to get dinner made/what job cutbacks are going to mean in the coming year/what sort of health challenges he/she may face in the future]. But [he/she] does know that [he/she] can count on KIRO Radio for [real-time traffic reports/the latest business news/a complimentary heart transplant from Ron Upshaw]. KIRO Radio: your source for everything that is beautiful and good in the Universe.”

So far, what we have here is nothing more than a noticeably flaccid act of self-aggrandizement; certainly nothing that would seem to warrant the title of this post. But here’s where things got all spit-takey for me this morning. I just happened to catch the beginning of one of KIRO’s most recent promo, reproduced in approximation here, emphasis mine:

It’s 3:30 in the afternoon, and Rachel has just finished picking the kids up from school. There’s baseball practice to get to, plus a recital later in the evening. Shopping, dinner….she doesn’t know how she’s going to fit it all in tonight.”


Why yes; now that you ask, I am by all indications twelve years old. :mrgreen:



Filed under: @ 5:26 pm

Yet another reason to listen to NPR. You get fun trivia at dark o’clock a.m.

The area code for that section of Florida that contains Cape Canaveral is 321.

I only hope that mission control is the one with the phone number 543-8633.


“Dear 60 Minutes….”

Uncle AndrewUncle Andrew
Filed under: @ 7:36 am

Truly an ensemble performance for the Sunday, December 5 show, gang. One third of the program dedicated to an interview with the chairman of the Federal Reserve about the flagging US economy, the remaining two thirds spent on an interview with the founder of Facebook. Nice to see that CBS News has its priorities straight. 🙄


What the hell is WRONG with people?!

Filed under: @ 5:01 pm

Okay, I promise I’ll find something to write about besides work at some point real soon, but for now just take it for granted that I REALLY need a vacation. Or a chill pill. Or a big fat drink or something.

So for the last six weeks or so I’ve been seeing this woman, a client who’d been in a few times before this, whose dog was just not right. Nothing specific, nothing that we could really put our fingers on as “THIS IS THE PROBLEM”, just not right.
Physical exams unremarkable. Bloodwork, urinalysis unremarkable.
The dog has been getting progressively worse. Energy levels dropping, appetite dropping. I’ve spent a LOT of time on the phone with this woman.
And I’ve spent a lot of time trying to work her into my schedule. The woman was having issues getting to us and several times I double booked myself, stretched my schedule, cut into my chart and phone time just to find a time when we could see her and her dog. And sometimes she’d show up and sometimes she wouldn’t.
And the dog has been getting progressively worse.

I finally, FINALLY talked her into letting me take x-rays of the dog two days ago. The dog looked like ass by that point. She hadn’t been eating, her abdomen was grossly distended (a relatively new development), and she’d developed edema along her back legs and her abdomen and chest –dependent edema.
The radiographs, of course, looked like ASS.
Lots of free fluid in the abdomen, a big SOMETHING in the left quadrant of the abdomen, moderate fluid in the chest.
I showed the owner the images and discussed our options. There were three.
Referral for abdominal ultrasound to better define the big SOMETHING to see if it were a resectable SOMETHING or
Exploratory surgery.

Understandably the owner was upset. I talked her through the possibilities of what the SOMETHING could be. Best guess was a liver or splenic mass, but with the radiographs I just couldn’t tell. If it were a splenic mass the SOMETHING could potentially be removed if there weren’t complications elsewhere, but again, with just from the radiographic images I simply couldn’t tell her more.
Having discussions like this I’m always quite up front about the possibility that even if we do the advanced diagnostics to find out what we’re dealing with the answer may be that we might find something we can’t do anything about. I told the owner that if she opted for ultrasound (the best option as the dog was a crappy surgical candidate) she’d have to take the risk that the ultrasound would find something that was non-resectable and that she’d have to choose euthanasia anyway.
Didn’t by any means hold a gun to her head and tell her she HAD to get an ultrasound. Referral to the internist for an ultrasound ain’t cheap and I’m fully aware that my medical recommendations have to be tempered by what people will pay for. I don’t make the decisions, I offer options and facilitate getting things done depending on what option the owner chooses.

So the owner chooses to have an ultrasound done. I pulled some strings and got a short list appointment for the dog yesterday. Report from the internist was on my desk this morning. The SOMETHING was a 5 x 5cm mass in the liver with probable involvement of the gall bladder and spleen.
Well that sucks.

But it wasn’t completely unexpected, at least not on my part. At this point in my career I’ve seen enough that I have that little voice inside my head that says “THIS IS NOT GOING TO TURN OUT WELL”. The internist recommended euthanasia and the owner concurred.

The owner called today to make a euthanasia appointment for tomorrow. Was told the charges for the euthanasia, we like to tell people that up front so that they don’t have to deal the charges when they come in for the euthanasia. Owner was perfectly fine with that.

The owner called up about two hours later PISSED OFF. Ranting that she’d talked with her sister and the amount of money we’d quoted her for the euthanasia was completely unreasonable, she could have the euthanasia done elsewhere much cheaper and we were just trying to squeeze as much money, that she didn’t have, out of her before we killed her dog.
Cancelled her euthanasia appointment.

Okay, I’ve read Elizabeth Kubler-Ross just like everyone else with an undergraduate degree from a liberal arts college. I know that the woman is going through the first stages of a natural grieving process, but I’ve just got to say…

I’ve spent the last six weeks bending over backwards for her, we let her walk the other day still owing us $75 because when she brought the dog in to have the x-rays done she “forgot” her purse and only had a small amount of cash in her purse. We told her not to worry about it that she could pay us later and that our biggest concern at that point was getting her dog seen and treated appropriately as soon as possible.

I guess my mamma just taught me right. When I know that someone’s gone out of their way for me I try not to insult them.

I feel better now.

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