It Did Not Go Well

Batman and I haven’t been taking Appa with us on our daily walks. That probably makes us terrible pet parents, but whatever. I make up for it in overindulging my baby with expensive cookies that look like Oreos. The dog is far from spoiled. But he’s *extremely* hyper and energetic and sixty pounds of all muscle, so when he pulls on his harness, you go flying. Well, I go flying because I’m weak and have fragile hands and always think he’s easier to walk than he is. (Don’t get me wrong. Appa is a wonderful—if not the best—dog, but he’s definitely a handful. I know. I heard the vet talking about us outside of the exam room.)

So, I’ve been pushing to take him back on walks with us because 1) he absolutely loves it 2) you’re *supposed* to take your dog on walks 3) Batman usually ends up with the leash. It’s terrible because again, it’s usually my suggestion to take the dog with us, but after Appa tugs too hard the first few times, Batman automatically reaches for the leash, like it’s his personal goal to conquer the beast—and show me how. I don’t object. I get my hands back—all red and sore—and get to walk in peace while Batman and Appa play Alpha vs Beta, with Appa continually losing. You think he would learn. But he’s outside, exploring the neighborhood he so rarely gets to see. It’s a sort of freedom, and I don’t think playing tug of war with his dad bothers him the way it bothers me and Batman. So, I fight for him. I fight for him to go on our walks and the other day, Batman agreed.

It did not go well.

It started out fine. The day was beautiful. A crisp 60 something degrees in Florida—the kind of day we normal Floridians long for. We’d made it down the first street in our neighborhood when Appa—surprise, surprise—started pulling on his leash. I made him sit to reinforce my command, when suddenly, out of fucking nowhere, three dogs came racing over, barking their heads off. No leashes. No invisible fence to keep them from mauling their neighbors. They circled Batman and Appa, growling and snapping. Even as he yelled at them to leave, I had to clap my hands and try and scare them off. I was pretty ineffective, especially since it took me a minute to realize what was happening. We were walking our dog in our neighborhood. How the hell are we under attack? When I snapped out of it, I tried making as much noise as possible to at least draw their attention away, because Batman was seconds away from killing them.

That’s when the neighbor came running out, apologizing. Oh, and laughing. He was also laughing. I guess to him, watching his three dogs nearly attack my dog and my fiancé is funny. I don’t know. But I’m also not a sick bastard so…

*shrugs*

With the pulling and the possible dog attacks, bringing Appa with us has been shelved again. Probably for a while. But we’ve also blacklisted McDonalds and Burger-King for poor service, and we’ve gone back plenty of times, which says a lot about our diet, but shut up. We’re trying. The topic of bringing Appa with us will come back up, and probably when Batman is in a super good mood. Of if Appa did something good. There will be a right moment, and I will conquer it. But for this time around, we struck out. ☹ Damn neighborhood dogs.

I’m That Weirdo

Well, I’m sick. And not just in the head this time. But the nose and throat and my eyeballs feel like heavy marbles sitting in their sockets. Does that sound weird? Because that’s what it feels like when you’ve contracted the plague and are DYING. It’s really not the plague. It’s a healthy combination of self-neglect and self-induced stress with a side of erratic weather. I over-worked myself while neglecting to feed myself, and it’s Florida, so I never know what’s going on outside, and I ended up making myself ill. Or “maybe I caught it” for all you non-believers. Either way, my eyeballs seriously feel like marbles and as weird as it sounds, it’s accurate.

*Everything hurts*

I actually called out of work last Thursday. I only brag because I don’t ever call out (even when I am sick) because I’m that weirdo that worries about work when I’m not there. All the emails I’m getting. All the requests and little red flags waiting for me when I sign in again. It drives me nuts, especially when I have vacationed planned. But I’ve worked myself up to those days. I’ve prepped, and put on my out of office so everyone understands the emergency of me not responding to their email ASAP.

But if I call out? (And no, I don’t have one of those jobs where I’m important enough to log into my work email from home.  Separate worlds, my friends.) How will people know? Will it all be okay? Will the world keep from imploding???

Turns out, it will. Friday (only slightly better) I returned to work and found it did not actually crumble. And, had I been playing hooky or doing something that required any amount of intense brain power, I would’ve spent the day wondering about all work coming in, and the guilt over not doing it. But, as it was, Thursday provided very little brain power and I spent it watching Drive and Tangled. And sleeping. A lot of sleeping. This plague has stretched to today with my marble eyeballs and hoarse throat, but hopefully it’s on its way out. Then again, it’s the holidays and we pass that shit around like hot potato, so… who knows?

How do you feel when you miss a day of work? Have you caught any bugs going around, or gave yourself one?

Dream Big, Right? IWSG

Well, my car is squeaking now. Or squealing. Or screaming. Noise. It’s making a loud screechy noise that even Freddy Mercury can’t tune out.  I discovered it the other day, after hearing the annoying sound and feeling sorry for whoever was driving the crappy car. Turns out it was me. I’m the crappy car girl (which has been obvious for a while) but I don’t need a shame bell announcing it everywhere I go. No one needs to see that Georgie has missed a few washes or that her paint is about fourteen years faded. It’s fine, except now she’s got a target on her back, which means I should stop breaking the law and slow down. Brakes also sound a little off. I should really think about getting a new car.

*sigh*

So, someone at work called me a “cog” the other day. He was introducing a new employee and referred to me as a “cog in the machine” which immediately made me think of Into the Badlands (ever watch it? You should!) and how the Widow started out a cog before working her way up to a Barron, which I started explaining, but they walked off and I was left mumbling to myself. I only mention it because I can’t get the phrase out of my head. “Cog in the machine.” I’m not sure if I’m offended or angered or what. He didn’t say it with any malintent or to be rude or bitter. There was absolutely nothing negative in his description, which was what it was: a basic description of my role in the company: a cog. A fucking cog. That’s what I am in every cubicle.

It may have hit home because I thought I would’ve graduated from cog by now, but, apparently not. It’s okay. Because once I make it big, I’m going to write an autobiography and call it, “Who’s the Fucking Cog Now” and send him a copy. Just so he knows I’m okay.

This segways perfectly into IWSG’s December (optional) question:

How would you describe your future writer self, your life and what it looks and feels like if you were living the dream? Or if you are already there, what does it look and feel like? Tell the rest of us. What would you change or improve?

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this. But who doesn’t fantasize about the future? This is what I’ve got so far:

Batman would come on my book tours with me since we’re travel bugs, and so he can coach and support me on public speaking, since it’s right up there with my love of spiders and small spaces. That would be the tough part. The talking to a group of people and not fainting, but I would get through it. (Xanax may be required)

Other than that, I would have an amazingly loyal fan-base to support the books I want to write. And there might even be a movie deal in the works. Why not? Dream big, right? Honestly, the dream is to be able to write fulltime. Wake up, coffee, write. Walk the neighborhood, write, lunch. Write, laundry, dinner, write. The rest are just details.

What about you? What does it look like when you make it big? Ever been called a cog before? And is your car on its way to hospice like mine?

Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is a monthly blog hop for writers at all levels to share their fears and insecurities in a safe and encouraging place. Please drop by and say hi to Alex Cavanaugh who started this nifty concept in bringing us all together.