A beautiful day to start a new year.
A beautiful day to start a new year.
My cats put their asses in my faces so much that I don’t see them anymore. Case in point: I took Hannah to the vet today to have her spayed, and the vet says that Hannah is a tom cat.
This is not the first time this has happened. Teresa was a boy, too. (Named after the great Teresa Burritt.)
What’s the name for when you see something so much, you don’t actually look anymore? Is it Cat Butt Blindness? Because that’s what I’ve got. Cat Butt Blindness.
We tried changing Teresa’s name to a more masculine, “Terri,” but I never got used to it. To this day, if anyone everyone refers to “Terri the cat,” I say, “Who? We’ve never had a cat named Terri.”
So, maybe we should change Hannah’s name now, but I don’t know if it will work. Or should we just have a tom cat named “Hannah”? I think Z named Hannah after her cousin, so maybe we could name Hannah after person-Hannah’s brother, Skyler. Other names I like:
What would you do?
Free short story for you today and tomorrow, in celebration of Halloween.
I started to write this as blog posts, but I was afraid you all might think I was going insane.
It’s a short horror story. I have it for sale, but honestly, don’t pay for it! It might not be that good. I’m not exactly a horror author. For free, though, it might be just what you are looking for. This story may be the only horror story where the first victim is a Jacob sheep. It’s like a ten minute read. I call it,
Bwa ha ha ha ha!
We didn’t breed the sheep this year, because we have enough sheep! We did get two lambs and an adult ewe from a friend last fall. So, that made twenty-five. “When are you lambing?” everyone in the sheep community kept asking.
“We aren’t lambing this year,” I told everyone.
Today I noticed a new little wooly one. Where the heck did that come from?
Some observations led me to the mother- one of last fall’s lambs that we got from a friend. She was only about five months old when we got her, but the only explanation is that she was pregnant upon arrival. Either that, or virgin birth. We should probably name him Baby Jesus.
Happy spring, everyone!
I’m a sucker for all of these articles on line with titles like, “How to Live On Purpose and Maximize Every Day” or “How to Live Life on Your Own Terms” or “How to Maximize Your Pickle Production.” ( Maybe not so much the last one, actually.) and then I listen to this podcast sometimes, “Happier with Gretchen Ruben” which is supposedly supposed to make you happy, but really I think it might better be titled, “Life Hacks for the Filthy Rich.” I get that the little tips make you happier- if you have no problems whatsoever in life.
And from all of these articles and podcasts I’m a sucker for, I learn things like,
And that’s not even mentioning all of the parenting “tips.” (Does anyone else feel like all of these “tips” are pretty much mandatory? It’s the implied, “If you don’t do this, you are a terrible parent.”)
I don’t know why I read all of these things. I never change my behavior at all. I just now have some stupid know-it-all thing to say with my friends,
“Did you know kale prevents cancer?”
Everyone knows eating kale prevents cancer, but my friends are too polite to say so. Everyone knows kale prevents cancer, but here’s the catch: to prevent cancer? You have to actually eat the kale.
I read all this stuff, and then I look around me. Most people are overweight. There’s an opioid epidemic. Everyone’s stressed out. We’re not eating the kale. We’re not getting the sleep. We’re living in piles of junk mail and chicken catalogues. But, you know what? We’re getting by. We’re doing it. We’re living it, one day at a time.
We’re not perfect, but we’re beautiful. And we’re still here. Showing up, every day. Like the troopers we are.
I’m going to stop reading those articles and listening to that perfect happiness podcast. John Lennon was right.
I’m going to make a competing podcast to steal the audience from “Happier with Gretchen Ruben.” I’m going to call it, “Fartier with Shoshanah Marohn,” and it’ll be about making beans.
“Whatever gets you through your life,” as John Lennon would say. Beans are good at that.
All I want for Christmas is blue and slightly lighter blue tile in the kitchen. So, we bought some and I set about installing them myself.
In my glue searches, I found this exciting video about the glue! What happens at 6:21 is priceless.
I saw this show on the Discovery Channel about how the aliens came and built all of the pyramids on Earth? They had some compelling evidence:
All of this sort of rests on an assumption that people just get smarter and smarter. We assume the aliens must have built the pyramids because we are so much smarter than people were a thousand or two thousand years ago. The aliens must be smart, because they invented space travel, right? No, no, no. This is all wrong. Aliens didn’t build the pyramids. The pyramids were built by “primitive” people who were way smarter than we are now. “Wheels weren’t invented yet” is so bizarre. Why not? Perhaps wheels were invented, and then forgotten. The same with space ships. People don’t get smarter and smarter with time, but rather stupider.
It’s a new theory of evolution: we’re just getting stupider all the time.
All this time, we thought we were making progress. And we weren’t.
My first impression of Yosha Bourgea was in the fall of 1988, my freshman year of high school. He was shortish and he always wore a giant overcoat and a heavy backpack full of mysterious books. There were rumors about Yosha: that he lived in a refurbished chicken coop, that he had never been to public school before, that he was only thirteen. He was different from me. I had spent my whole life in public school, I lived in a tract house, and I was way older (fourteen). But in that fall of 1988, Yosha and I did have one thing in common: We had acting class with Mr. Hawk.
Mr. Hawk is not his real name. I only call him Mr. Hawk because he looked a bit like a hawk, and he terrified me as a hawk might terrify a little white bunny. He never ever smiled. He was gravely serious about acting. He was a Southern gentleman, a transplant from Georgia by way of Hollywood. While he was in Hollywood, he claimed to have worked on the movie Scrooged. He dressed just like the Don Johnson on Miami Vice, in pastel suits with an undershirt instead of a dress shirt.
Mr. Hawk did these emotional exercises where he tried to reach into the most vulnerable parts of our souls and expose our tears to the world, wrestle with them, and apply our deepest and most terrifying emotions to our acting on the stage. We were teenagers. Guarded teenagers. We didn’t want to reveal our inner lives- or, at least, I didn’t. Mr. Hawk would have us form a circle on the stage, and inside the circle, he would have one of us improvise things as he yelled out directions from the outside of the circle. The directions were always doable, but uncomfortable. The first memory I have of knowing Yosha is of him being inside the circle. I don’t know what the acting exercise was, but Yosha was in the middle of the stage, writhing in agony, screaming like a Yoko Ono therapy session,
“Yawoooo! Aaaaaash! Baaaa!” And Mr. Hawk was kneeling beside him, pounding the floor, sweating through his pink jacket,
“Yes! Emote! Feel it! The pain! It’s real!”
Yosha twisted his body in jerking movements, as though some unseen force from above were jabbing him with an electric prod,
“Yeeeeeoooooooow!” Yosha screamed.
It is hard to exaggerate Yosha’s complete commitment to acting out this scene of torture. It was just unreal, like he was occupying some alternate universe where he really was being tortured, and somehow I was sitting a few feet away and not feeling a thing. And Mr. Hawk was beside himself with excitement. He was practically frothing at the mouth as he yelled encouragement at Yosha,
“Yes! Feel the pain!” Mr. Hawk punctuated his words by pounding his fist on the stage. And while Yosha shrieked and Mr. Hawk had his emote-gasm, twenty or so teenaged kids (and I) just stared at this scene before us, with mouths agape, in complete stunned silence.
It was a stunning first impression.
Here is a video of Yosha more recently, singing a Christmas song he made up (the melody is stolen from a song by Death Cab for Cutie).
Yosha Bourgea is also the author of the new release Murgatroyd Buttercups, which I illustrated for him. (And also for you, actually.) Today is the last day to purchase it at half price for $5.49. Tomorrow, it goes up to $10.98.