Sunday, May 28, 2017


SUMMARY: I get only one inheritance, ever. So I should spend it profligately.

Meet MUTT MVR II! (AKA just plain MUTT MVR, because there's no room on the license plate for a II or even 2. I'll have to ponder possible solutions.)

They call it "Shoreline Blue Pearl."  In sunlight it's metallic--well--dark gray/silver, really. But I like this marginally better than the actual metallic dark gray/silver ("Predawn Gray Mica"), and the color choices are all prosaic anyway (essentially white, gray, black, and I don't really want a burgundy car).

So, I have a nominally blue car for the first time.

Hoooo boy, bells and whistles up the kajinky!

Only my 2nd new car evah (out of 5 cars). I put 10 of these 12 total miles driven on this car. Woot!

Ringing the "Sold another car!" bell. First me, then the very helpful salesman, Gerry, because I insisted. We're both happy.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Happy 6th, Chip! Here's a bed just for you!

SUMMARY: How can he possibly be 6 already?!

Zorro always takes possession of All The Things that are fluffy and large. I treated Chip cruelly a couple of months back by replacing my huge recliner with two smaller upholstered chairs that he finds uncomfortable.  As an alternative, I got him a big comfy bed for the living room.

Note to other supposedly experienced photographers: Always remember to remove the *$%#@ sun shade from the lens when using the *#%@^* built-in flash to avoid casting huge #(@$% shadows on your photos.

Note to other supposedly experienced photographers: Have the camera ready when you first give the dog the new bed so you can capture him rolling around in it and chatting happily while trying it out, not after he's done all of that bit.

Is reeely mines! Wooo!

Hmmm, what is me do with large and fluffy?

Me is bite, prove is mines!

Is bitey bitey bitey!
Come on, Chip, it's a bed, not a toy, no bitey please.

Me is gots big toy, maybe is pulls out the stuffingses!
Leave the stuffingses in there, please, Chip, really, it's a bed!

Is the hard workses, me is lye downs and chewy chewy the toy.

Ooooooh, Chipster Dudes! Is gots new toy is fluffy and large which is Alls My Things?!
Backs away, naughty Z, is Human Mom sayses is toy of Chip!

Fine. Me is chew on better fluffy and large All My Things.

Is chewy the hole in mine bigs toy for gettings the evil stuffingses.
Srsly, Chip, please do not destroy your new and pricey bed.

Srsly, Human Mom, is not tell ME no bitey bitey pulls out stuffingses!

No no Human Mom iz Chipses toy for bitey bitey no tell me no!


Oooh, me is sorry, Human Mom, is pleez don't take away the toy bed thing.

the end

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Dogs Try Hard

SUMMARY: Just sayin'--they're usually good pups.

I have not yet moved the dogs into sleeping off the bed at night. Chip isn't the problem. You know who is.

At least now Señor Z moves off my side of the bed when I tell him to Move. Firmly. Maybe even only 2 or 3 times.  I thought we'd never get there.  Even Tika, who was stubborn about it, was moving on command within a month or so of starting on the bed (as I recall--certainly didn't take 2 years!).

They really do try hard when I give them a chance. And they both know so little. They’d love to spend more time with me. I’m still just feeling meh about it.

AKC has just announced a new Tricks titles progression, and a friend (Sparkle's/Ben's/McKenzie's human mom) has announced that she's going for it and is teaching tricks.

This half motivated me.1 So in the last few days I've done teeny tiny bits of tricks work:
  • (a) Hold biscuit on nose. (b) Then toss it up and catch it.
    This is new for the boys. Chip wants to lower his nose. Zorro wants to raise his.
  • Crawl or walk backwards (Z & C, respectively).
    Have worked casually at this for a while. Very casually. Almost invisibly.
  • Shake left, shake right depending on which human hand is offered.
    (C has done this for a while. Z is not completely solid, but almost.)
  • Spin Left or Right on command.
    (Have been working on fading the hand/finger swoop assistance. Getting there slowly.)
  • Touch nose to (a) hand (b) target.
    (Both do hand very very well. I've lackadaisically worked on a separate target.)
Others that we've worked on in the past:
  • Find It.  I hide a treat in the other room, dog has to find it.
    Also part of this--dogs have to stay in Down in first room while I'm out of sight hiding the treat.
  • Paws Up. Front paws on whatever I indicate.
    Z does this naturally pretty often. When I practice, I combine with "Off" (as another "trick") . As in, Off (treat) Paws Up (treat) Off (treat) Paws Up (treat) Off (treat).
  • Roll over.
    Jeez, I started this with them once and never went back to it. I should. This is in the basic half dozen things that every dog should know. IMHO.
  • Blow bubbles in a bowl of water
    (I got stuck on making progress and so stopped working on it)
Things my previous trick dogs (Remington, Tika, Boost, Jake, Amber, in that order) have done that I would add to the list if I were really working on tricks:

  • Figure 8 around my legs (a) standing still, (b) with me walking.
  • Speak.
    (Well, actually only Rem ever knew this. Only thing I succeeded in this with Tika and Jake was that they no longer barked at things that used to make them bark. Opposite of what I was trying for.)
Everything we work on, they behave so differently from each other!  Style differences in napping--

Both cute, though.

1 Not that I'm likely to ILP these boys with AKC. But, who knows--a couple of years back I bookmarked this other organization that started offering tricks titles. Just didn't want to pay the fees for them, either.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The T-shirt Project

Summary: Attempting to downsize the collection. Hahahaha!

This, my dears, is what 170 t-shirts looks like when called out to muster.

I really do periodically pull out a few and give them away, but then more find me and follow me home.

For example, just went to Walt Disney World and somehow 2 more ended up in my suitcase. Don't know how it happens.

This week, Team Taj is seriously totally attempting to downsize t-shirts by A Ton. So far, "a ton" consists of 30, but that's pretty good, for me.  See, I like them. I wear them. (In as much as one can say that one wears them when one wears only one a day and only during the warmer 6 months of the year, and not even every day during those months.)  They just never wear out. For some odd reason.

But--things fit better into the bureau already. Yay! Until some other insidious t-shirt whispers my name--

Let me introduce my pretties (in the preceding piles).

Colors or patterns
w/no message,



USDAA nationals,
Power Paws,
Bay Team,
Other clubs
and events
Agility misc.,
Dog nonagility

oops image
squished this
pile wrong!

DisneylandDragonsTravel  /
More travel
 /  tourist

You can see how dogs--and agility in particular--have contributed to my, ahem, scholarly collection.

Oh--prefer them organized by color? Can do!

Oooh! Oooh! Ooh! Can I show you this, can I, huh?

Do we detect a trend here? I love it! Love it! Mwah ha ha haaaaaa!

(For that image, I folded each to hide any text or images, so that you can wallow indulgently in just the colors and the patterns. Also, I pulled together almost all of my tie-dyed clothing for this one, adding to the 13 short-sleeved Ts the following: 4 polos, 4 long-sleeved Ts, 2 pairs of socks, one pair of leggings, one tank top, and one bra. And, yes, I do  know just from the pattern exactly which item is which. My preciouses...)

Perhaps later I'll show you close-up photos of all of my pretties. So many have backstories, too! Like the "Slave Labor" shirt--good friends from 1984!--

Or the "Vicon 5-0" shirt--family and long-time friends at the annual sleep-over in 2011--

Or the Power Paws Camp group of agility friends from 2004 -- "The Flying Rearendas" --

Ah, yes. But that's enough story-time for tonight, my dears. Now, off to bed for sugar-coated dreams of magical t-shirts!