December 31, 2010

My foot's fine

Just wanted to update all my loyal followers on my health condition. As some of you may have read (thanks to that dumb cat), I had to go to the vet's last month to get my foot looked at. They removed the bad part and had it tested, and it turned out I have cancer. Evidently there are two kinds of cancer you can get on your foot: the not-so-bad kind and the terrible kind. Well, we waited a few more weeks for another test, and the news came in yesterday: it is the not-so-bad kind. Which we kind of already knew, because my foot healed up really quickly and I was ready to run and play again that night.

So I got good news for the new year! Although I had to wear that stupid cone of shame, I turned out to be ok in the end. Plus, it was kind of fun, wrecking the Christmas tree with that big ol' cone every day...

December 24, 2010

This time I meant it

The last time I wrote a blog about songs that get stuck in my head, I didn't mean to.  It's one of the most visited posts on this blog.  This time I actually mean it, and on Christmas Eve, what better genre of music to pick on than Christmas music?

1.  Feliz Navidad
This one pretty much speaks for itself, but my wife did have a neighbor when we first met whose young child would sing this song at the top of his lungs while shaking his money-maker in the front picture window.

2.  Santa Baby
Man, I hate this song.  Aside from the blatant materialism involved, it just gets under my skin.

3.  I Want a Hippopotamus For Christmas
This song is actually kind of cute, which is a great deal of improvement for me from the way I used to feel about it.  Still, the little kid's vocals stuck in your head all day long tend to drift away from cute.

4.  Any of the modernized versions of 'Jingle Bells'
Think 'Rusty Chevrolet', or either of the two current TV commercials for  I honestly need to hear the original 'Jingle Bells' once a year to counter the 'other' lyrics to this song...

5.  Anything by Mannheim Steamroller
Honestly, what is a Mannheim Steamroller?  Has it got something to do with Anaheim, California?  Let's check Wikipedia... ok, it turns out it actually has nothing to do with steamrollers in the sense that anyone alive today would think of.  Kind of disappointing.  Anyway, this band (along with Aaron Neville and Kenny G) got played pretty much nonstop at my family's place at Christmas.

December 17, 2010

The why game

I'm off this weekend to graduate from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, to finalize the process of getting my PhD.  It's been a little over four years now.  It sure doesn't seem that way sometimes - those years seemed to zip by.  I went from 4 cats to 5 in that time, and got both the dogs in the last year and a half.  Heather and I moved a total of 4 times, and she got her associate's degree in cardiac ultrasound.  Lots of ups and downs.

I keep getting asked by everyone when they should start calling me Dr. Vic.  I didn't get into this to get the added bonus of having a tag before my name (although if it gets me better seats at restaurants I might try), it was more because I wanted to pursue my curiosity.  I'm always asking questions and annoying the people who are in charge of teaching me.  I remember as a kid hearing a story about Abraham Lincoln (I grew up in Springfield, IL).  As a child he was sent off to school in Kentucky or Indiana or wherever he was growing up (I didn't exactly pay as much attention to the details of Lincoln's young life, despite my curiosity).  He came home one day upset because his teachers told him he was addled, he asked too many questions.  His mom wrote the teacher a letter saying he wouldn't be coming back, that any teacher who felt that asking questions was a problem shouldn't be teaching her kid.  I liked that.  Probably to the chagrin of some of my teachers.

My niece and nephews like to play the 'why' game.  It's fun as a kid.  The rules are simple: you are only allowed to respond to any answer from a parent/teacher with another question.  You can probably guess what the allowed word is: why? You win the game when you get the parent to throw up their arms in defeat and say 'Quit asking me questions!'  Extra points are scored for the level of annoyance you cause.  This is most effectively achieved by asking the question 'why' with a slight whining tone.

I do not intend to cast any aspersions on anyone else in my family, but I seem to be the only one who can play the 'why' game effectively.  Maybe I know a lot of useless info, but I can play scores of rounds of the 'why' game until either the kids give up or I do.  The kids give up when I give them an explanation they can't wiggle their way around, or when I run out of ideas and answer with the easiest filibuster of the game.


December 11, 2010

Sweet, sweet victory.

I was just thinking the other day how dogs 1 and 2 need to be knocked down a few notches, when fate delivers me the sweetest of surprises: a cone of shame. A few of us cats have had to wear one in the past - they tried with me when my foot was operated on (THREE TIMES, WHAT IS THE VETERINARY PROFESSION COMING TO THESE DAYS!!!???), but that didn't fly. I haven't seen dogs 1 or 2 wearing one yet - and then my nemesis, dog2, was taken to the vet. Monday, this was. I hoped she wouldn't come back, but she did. However, the next day, she was gone at the vet's all day, and when she came home she was wearing the cone of shame.

Sweet, sweet victory.

December 9, 2010

The case of the missing sister

My sister disappeared the other day. I was very upset. She got to go for a car ride without me, and I'm pretty sure she got to go for a walk too. I got put in my crate, and she, mom, and dad left the house. I threw a fit but it didn't help. Mom and dad came back with her after awhile and she smelled funny, like the vet's office. Maybe I dodged a bullet?

Then the next day dad took her away early in the morning. I didn't see her all day until the evening, and when she came home she was really tired and her foot was all wrapped up. She really smelled like the vet then, and like something else sort of familiar. It's been awhile since I was at the vet but I do remember being left there overnight once and waking up after a long sleep. Parts of me hurt and I had to take medicine. I also didn't get to play for a little while. It's been so long ago I can't really remember for sure, but I know it wasn't fun. So I guess I can't be too jealous. Before the vet her foot had a big spot on it that smelled strange and needed to be licked (we got yelled at for that, even at night, our parents can be real pains!). So I guess maybe that's why they took her to the vet? All I know is I can't wrestle with her anymore without getting yelled at. Sometimes she wears this silly cone thing, and dad even put our collars on the other night so I know it's serious. They don't let her run or anything, and she keeps getting the medicine treats.

Vets ruin the lives of basset hounds, I don't care what owners say. Every time a pet comes home from the vet there are more rules and less fun.

December 4, 2010

A little late for Thanksgiving, but...

I'm really thankful for our families.  I won't go on about how tough times are, and how unfair life is sometimes.  I'm just grateful I have people who love and support me, and I look forward to the day when I can return the favor of supporting them.  I can't make it without our families.