I know this may seem unbelievable (not to mention un-American) but

I've never been shopping with my mother. Never. Not grocery shopping, even. Or kitchen accessory shopping. Or school clothes shopping. Or god forbid car shopping. Not even thrift store shopping.

The only thing that even came close was buying a juice at some hippie store in the middle of nowhere once, on Highway One.

I guess I could explain why this is, but I think it would be a better opera than blog entry, and I just don't have the time right now.

Another Silly Cat Post

This is a picture of Tigery playing with Little Z's toys. She was sitting on that pretend fire engine, which has all these buttons on it that make it talk and honk and such. Tigery the cat was pressing the buttons and making it say, "Call 911", "Stop, drop, and roll," and then making it do the fire engine noise. She stopped when I came in. Was she thinking she was in trouble? Does she look guilty to you?
(click to make it oh so large)

Steelers or Packers? (Anthropological Study)

I was born in Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Here is the Steeler Fight Song:

I now live in Wisconsin. Here is the Packer fight song:

Oh, crap. I just can't post the "Go Pack Go" song. Musically, it sucks.

If I were a fan of someone, I have to say I relate more to the old Pennsylvania folk. Something about their brand of weird appeals to me.
But I don't want to get beat up, so I'll stick to the ol' Packer sweatshirt.

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Keep in touch.

Football Mania- Seriously

My first inkling that football might be a big deal in Wisconsin was when I was reading a John Irving book (was it A Widow for One Year?) and it began with a man accidentally committing suicide in Wisconsin, on the night that the Packers lost the Super Bowl. The investigating police in the novel pondered whether the man actually killed himself over the Packers' loss, or whether he had another motive. Seriously.

The only sport I have ever seriously cared about was Olympic Figure Skating. That's right. I just wrote "seriously" and "Olympic Figure Skating" in the same sentence.

So, I try to fit in here.

Try. I bought a sweatshirt Friday. It says, "Packers" on it. I wore it to work because it was the day you were supposed to wear your favorite team sweatshirt. There were a shocking amount of Packer sweatshirts at school on Friday. Okay, actually, it is impossible to be shocked by the amount of sweatshirts or the amount of Packers stuff people wear here. It just is. It's like how tigers wear striped fur coats. You expect it. Sweatshirts, Packers stuff, Badger stuff. It just is. The Tao of the Midwest.

Today, the Packers are playing the Bears to see which team goes to the Superbowl. All week, this has been the talk of the state. Today at Miller and Sons, I saw this old guy wearing Packers gear from head to toe. Nothing unusual about that. Another guy walked up to him and said,

"Hey, I saw a guy over there, right in the next aisle, wearing a bears jacket and a bears hat. You should go pound him!"
"He better be wearing a helmet, too!" said the old man.
"He should go back to Chicago, where he belongs!" said the first guy. See.

I don't think I've ever even dated a guy, or been remotely attracted to anyone who was seriously into football. Bad-Assed Husband plays virtual football. Or, wait, what's that stuff called? I don't even know. You get together your "team" which is a bunch of real players, but it's just a little game of your own and... you all know what I'm talking about, right? It's probably all about drinking beer and hanging out, but you're supposed to keep track of who does what in the real football games and that affects how your pretend team does against the pretend teams of other people. BAH does that. But the funny thing is, he never watches any games. Ever. (As far as I know.)

So, I wore the Packers thing on Friday, and BAH says, "You should wear a Bears one on Monday."

This is hilarious because, you know, I would be completely ostracized. Not kidding. Holden Caulfield would I be. There would be disparaging rumors about my mental health. All because of a sweatshirt. Really. This is serious business.

Proof of my Swedish Heritage

I think this is funny:

Exit Through the Gift Shop

I saw the greatest movie the other day. I liked it so much, I watched it twice. It's called, Exit Through the Gift Shop. (If you do Netflix, it's on the instant list right now.)It's a documentary about street artists. That would probably be enough to hold my attention alone, because you know how I love graffiti, but then some extremely unexpected things start happening.

The director of the film is this street artist, Banksy, who never actually reveals his identity, even though he is one of the main characters in the film. You see his hands, or you see him in shadow. He distorts his voice in interviews. This movie progresses quickly into all sorts of bizarrities that I shouldn't reveal here. I know some of my readers are very mild mannered, so I'd just like to mention that there is no naughty language or violence in this film. If it sounds too tame for you because of that, well, don't worry. It's not tame at all. Quite the contrary.

You couldn't write better fiction. Really. And it's all true- they've got it all on film!

More Cats!

Little Z named them: Bodkay is the orange one, Tigery is the grey.

We went shopping for a cat tree to put in front of the window today, and they were over $100. Our general sentiment was,

"Hey, that's just a bunch of wood and carpet and feathers hanging off of it! We've got wood and old carpet and chicken feathers at home, so let's just make one!" Except for Little Z- she wanted to buy one, of course.

It took me about two hours to make a cat tree. It's as nice as the $129 model at the store. I didn't have to purchase any materials. It's all leftover from other projects or recycled or garbage. The chicken feathers seem to be the cats' favorite part of the thing. Here are some more pictures of cats:


A few weeks ago, I discovered that some creature had been eating my super special hard-won, home grown pumpkins in the root cellar. One of them was half eaten. That's a lot of squash. There were mouse droppings nearby.

Four evenings ago, I heard a rustling. I was alone in the living room. I went over to the fireplace, where it was coming from, and peered into the vent where the fan blows the hot air out of the fireplace. A mouse jumped out an inch from my nose, sailed through the air and ran off into the corner of the room, behind some boxes.

The night before last, we found an old mouse trap in the kitchen with just the tail of a mouse caught in it. The rest of the mouse was gone. Later on that night, I kept hearing a rustling in the kitchen.

Last night, bad ass husband and I were sitting in the dining room, playing a board game, when we heard the pitter patter of mouse feet above our heads, between the ceiling and the upstairs floor. Over and over. On and on. At the same time, we heard another mouse in the garbage under the sink.

"Maybe it's time to get a cat."

So, today we went to the Humane Society, looking for a young, playful cat. We did not say, "We need a good mouser." That's because they frown on that. I don't know why. Is it because it's cruel to the mouse? Because it sure isn't cruel to the cat. In my experience, there is no happier cat than a mouse hunting cat.

We went to Madison today and found these two sweeties at the Humane Society:

The orange one is a male, the grey is a female. They're both a year old. They came with the names, "Toby" for the orange and "Tipper" for the grey. I wanted especially to change "Tipper," because it just reminds me of Tipper Gore, and I don't want Tipper Gore sitting on my lap waiting to be pet. I've always wanted to have two cats named "Beastie" and "Ludwig Wittgenstein," but when we met them, they seemed a bit too small and innocent for such grand names. Little Z started calling "Tipper" "Kipper", which is just fine. So I guess we won't be insanely creative. Perhaps we'll change our minds tomorrow and call them "Rasputina Gravytrain" and "Dave".

I let Toby investigate the cupboard under the sink. We showed that mouse that we've jumped it up a notch. We've only had the cats a few hours, but thus far, they have spent much time patrolling the grounds, chasing anything that moves. They chased Little Z a lot. I give them high marks for their first day.

In summary, to rid ourselves of a lot of tiny creatures roaming around, we got some bigger creatures to roam around, and now we have lots of things roaming around.


Lately, I’ve been watching this program, Dexter, on the Netflix. It’s about a cop who moonlights as a serial killer. It’s lovely.

It’s not so much that I’m into horror. I’m really not. I read Zombies Are Magic purely for the comedy writing. What I love about this program is the duplicity. Dexter has a secret life that he can absolutely not reveal to anyone at work.

There are a lot of jobs like this. So many of us go to work and hide our true natures, whether you work in retail and wear long sleeves to cover your tattoos, teach in a conservative school and hide that you’re gay, or just have the wrong true personality for your chosen profession. We have to have scripted conversations with people at work, just to get by. It’s the rules. We’ve all got to play by the rules, even if we’re not serial killers, but just something a little bit unmarketable, a little bit off from the norm. And then, we’re unhappy because we can’t be ourselves.

The funny thing about Dexter is that he really loves his day job.

I watch this horrific program and I find it to be almost deep. Some people say that zombies are so popular these days because that’s what people feel like: zombies. We’re pretending to be alive, but we’re dead inside- or some such thing. I think it’s a lot more complicated than that, but there definitely is something a little off in these modern lives of ours, a little dark, a little scary.

Intentionally Awkward Family Photo

I crocheted chicken hats for most of the family for Christmas. Little Z is being a rebel with her cow hat. BAH is wearing her hat. My neice, Emily, appears to have taken off the hat and handed it to future Uncle Bryce just before the photo. She has really great hair, so I forgive her.

I didn't have time to make them for most of the guys! I thought they would never wear them anyway- except for my dad, and he liked his, of course. He's all about the gag gifts.

I got the pattern from Roses. Thank you!