Forum posts made by mrsmartypants

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 24 Mar 2011 19:59

I swear, insurance company employees aren't human. They're spawned in the fiery pits of the seventh level of Hell.

Topic Share a Memory
Posted 08 Jan 2011 19:32

Okay, it's not actually a memory, because it just happened. Well, less than twenty-four hours ago, anyway. So I suppose technically, it is a memory, but it's not--

You all be the judge.

As some people know, our German Shepherd got pregnant. Not unexpectedly either, but on purpose. Our neighbor also has a Shepherd, and when we looked at him, and our girl, we just knew that they would make beeeyootiful babies together. We put the two of them together for a few days (at the appropriate time) and sure enough, the magic happened. We waited expectantly as she got bigger and bigger...

Since we knew pretty close what the conception date was, we also knew (pretty close) when she was due. I knew that dogs usually will crawl off into a closet somewhere to have their puppies. They need somewhere warm, close, and dark. They like privacy - it makes them feel safe. I didn't want her to have to find a place, so I built one for her. I took several cardboard boxes and tore them down, using tape to rebuild them into a low-sided box about four feet by five. This new box had a triple-layer floor and double-reinforced walls for structural integrity. I lined the box with a nice, soft quilt, then put her bed in there so she would know that was "her" space. I hung a black sheet over like a tent so she would have privacy when she needed it. I even laid down in there with her, so she knew it was all right to go in. Our vet told us she would show sings just before she went into labor. He told us to look for nesting signs - that she would find her whelping room, and settle down into it, often kicking blankets and floor coverings as if they just weren't comfortable enough. He told us that if we watched her, we couldn't help but see it.


Last night, Mrs. Smartypants and I were lying in bed watching TV. Our dog had made it a habit to lie in bed with us, between us. She'd nudge us with her head to remind us of our duty to scratch her behind her ears. Suddenly, she got up and slowly turned around in bed a couple times. As if she couldn't make up her mind whether she wanted to lie facing us, or facing the TV. Mrs. Smartypants looked over and said, "Hey - there's a big wet spot over here!"

We both looked at our girl, and sure enough, there was a brand-spanking new puppy struggling to get it's first breath! I can't tell you what I felt when I understood that the one place our girl felt safe enough to have her babies in was right between the Mrs. and I. It truly was a life-affirming moment. She trusted us that much! All the websites will tell you that it can be as much as an hour between pups. Well, it was an hour between the first one and the second one. After that, they came out every twenty minutes or so. She just barely had enough time to clean off this one, and get him breathing and mewling properly when we could see the contractions start for the next one. And the process just kept repeating itself. I wondered (not for the first time) just how many pups she had inside her! I thought she was done at six - there was a lull. Then it was seven, then eight. And then I thought she was done.

About a half-hour past midnight, she started having contractions again. Then they finished, but nothing had come out. She started making a low whimpering noise. She was pulling at something, but... nothing was coming out. Wondering, I took a closer look. There was her last one. His head was out, and she had cleaned the membrane off it, but he was stuck. He was breathing in a labored way - she had tightened up around his neck. The poor girl was just too tired to push him out. I ran for some latex gloves. I pushed on her belly, then around the opening. I urged her on, telling her to keep trying. I had nothing but his head to pull on, and I surely didn't want to damage it, or his spine by pulling, so I was trying my best to push with her, to push him out. I don't know how long it took, but I soon saw his tiny paws. I kept working at him and then I had enough to wiggle him a little. I wiggled and wiggled, and then his shoulders were out! And then... whoosh! He came out all the way. I let out a breath I had been holding in for I don't know how long. She took over for me, cleaning him off gratefully. Nine. Nine puppies last night. And I'm sure I'll remember that last little guy for the rest of my life.

Topic Favorite quotes
Posted 27 Dec 2010 14:06

"A coward dies a thousand deaths. A hero dies but once."


Topic Picture Match
Posted 27 Dec 2010 13:59 size tiny.jpg

Something in miniature.

Topic Share a Memory
Posted 10 Dec 2010 09:36

That reminds me of the time when I was a senior in High School. The US Space Shuttle program was still fairly new - there had only been a couple launches done. Another launch was scheduled for a Thursday, I believe. Three of my friends and I all decided that we wanted to go see it. One friend had an old rattle-trap of a conversion van (the kind with ragged carpet on the walls and a bench seat that laid out into a bed - think "Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and you'll be close). We loaded up into the van the night before the launch, with no clear intent except to drive north on I-95 until we saw the "Cape Canaveral" signs, find a nice place to park, and hunker down. Our total amount of supplies were a couple cases of beer, a bottle of Bacardi Silver, and a box of Cheezits.

The launch was scrubbed that morning. We drove back with dry, cheesy mouths, no comprehension of how much time that had passed, and no real idea of how much trouble we would be in when we faced our parents that night. (LOL)

Good times... icon_biggrin

Topic Forum Game...Define the word above...
Posted 23 Nov 2010 19:20

Gral: (colloquial) The noise made by a redneck dog that's not sure if he wants to actually bark at you or go back to sleep on the front porch.

Ex: "That Yeller dawg sure got a mean gral when he wonts to..."

Next word: Passetry

Topic Name That Movie
Posted 23 Nov 2010 19:13

Either "Cool Hand Luke", or "Smokey and the Bandit", take your pick. :bootyshak

"She knows it's a Multi-Pass..."

Topic Name That Movie
Posted 12 Nov 2010 08:19

Apocalypse Now. (Regular, or redux?)

"Y'all got on this boat for different reasons, but y'all come to the same place. So now I'm asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. Sure as I know anything, I know this - they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, ten? They'll swing back to the belief that they can make people... better. And I do not hold to that. So no more runnin'. I aim to misbehave."

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 02 Nov 2010 17:20

I miss having fun.

Topic What's in your mug?
Posted 30 Oct 2010 16:53

Some ginseng tea we got as a gift at work. Odd thing about it is that it's freeze-dried tea. Like instant coffee, only tea. Not bad. Not great. Good with honey.

Topic Use One Word to Describe How You're Feeling
Posted 29 Oct 2010 06:09


Topic Keep your story with you anywhere.
Posted 27 Oct 2010 19:53

Mmm, Google.....

Big brother is watching you....

You can do the same thing with Hotmail, or Yahoo, or probably any other web-based mail service.

Topic Keep your story with you anywhere.
Posted 27 Oct 2010 19:48

That's neat. I never knew you could do that. I feel like such a caveman now. (LOL)

Topic Keep your story with you anywhere.
Posted 27 Oct 2010 12:59

Maybe everybody else already knows this, but I just figured it out not long ago. I hate saving things to a physical device, and then carrying that physical device around with me, just so I can access it if I want to. There are always little compatibility issues that come up, and then maybe I want to write something but I don't have my flash drive... If I'm ever writing a short story to be submitted on a website somewhere, I use my gmail account to store it online. I just start a new email to myself, write my story as the text of the message, and save it as a draft. I can access it from anywhere, from anyone's computer, and work on it any time I have a yen to. The same thing works for photos I may want to edit, as well.

Topic Use One Word to Describe How You're Feeling
Posted 27 Oct 2010 12:25


Topic What's in your mug?
Posted 27 Oct 2010 09:21

A place I used to hang out at once in a while:

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 26 Oct 2010 18:44

Ipods are cool as shit, but it takes forever to surf through a site like this on one...

Topic Use One Word to Describe How You're Feeling
Posted 24 Oct 2010 10:32


Topic Favorite quotes
Posted 24 Oct 2010 10:31

"If the Reavers board the ship, they'll rape us to death, eat our flesh, and sew our skins into their clothing. And if we're very, very lucky, they'll do it in that order..."

-- Gina Torres, as Zoe Washburn (from Firefly )

Topic Story Locations
Posted 22 Oct 2010 13:03

Nothing pisses me off more when I'm reading a story than when it's set in a particular locale, and I've been there, and I can tell by the details the author includes that he or she never has. The locale is going to change, depending on the requirements of the story, so I think it's less important where the locale is, than whether or not it's realistic.

Topic A Picture Tells a Thousand Words
Posted 22 Oct 2010 06:40

Imagine living with this view always in your background...

Topic Favorite quotes
Posted 19 Oct 2010 17:13

Only two things are infinite; the universe and human stupidity. And I'm not so sure about the former.

Albert Einstein.

Topic Forum Game...Define the word above...
Posted 19 Oct 2010 17:08

Tiggertrigger: A keyword that causes some fictional characters to launch into unstoppable fits of bouncing and "Hoo hoo hoo-ing".

The next word is Infinitiny.

Topic What's in your mug?
Posted 19 Oct 2010 17:04

Does it matter if it's not a mug? 'Cause it's a tumbler, and it's got a half-inch of whiskey over five... no, four ice cubes.

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 19 Oct 2010 16:59

i am seriously considering using our bathtub for it's intended use and taking a bath in it. happy8

"A bath!? A Man can catch the Devil from a Bath...!"

Oh, wait... you're a girl. Ne'mind. :-"

Topic Share a Memory
Posted 19 Oct 2010 14:23

Damn, Honey. You just made me think about Sheba.

My little girl always wanted a dog that would play with her, and fetch shit for her, and sleep in her bed at night, to chase away those pesky bad dreams. We never did want a puppy-mill dog, so this meant weekly visits to the local pound and Humane Society. During one of those visits, we saw a skinny little black thing, shivering back at the other end of the kennel. She was a Lab, mixed with something undefinable. We took her to the play area and she was really well-mannered. She sat on command, she fetched a ball (once). She was a skinny little thing, to be a Lab. We wrote up the papers, and took her on home. We named her "Sheba". It was my daughter's idea.

Sheba warmed to the family really quickly. She did sleep in my daughter's bed, until she got too restless and had to go check out the rest of the house. We moved to a place with a big ol' yard - just over an acre. Sheba seemed to take personal affront to the fact that there were numerous other critters that considered the yard to be their home. Rabbits, squirrels, raccoons, possums - she took it to heart that part of her job in the new home was chasing all these critters away. Didn't seem to do any harm, since the critters could easily scamper through the fence, but the openings in the wire were far too small for Sheba to make it through.

It was late summer, 2004. Hurricane Frances passed right over our house. The house was fine and we were all okay, but it messed up the yard pretty good. I was busy on the weekends, trying to clear out the worst of the fallen trees when Hurricane Jeanne came through, three weeks later. What Frances had loosened up, Jeanne knocked over. The trees had taken out a part of the fenceline, burying it in a tangle of twisted limbs and up-rooted timber. I couldn't see the damage, so I didn't know that there was now an opening Sheba could get through. I let her out that night, just like I did every night, and went inside to finish watching whatever the TV was playing. Apparently, the storm had destroyed the homes of most of the woodland critters living in the woods around the house, and they had taken shelter in the brambles as best they could. Sheba must have thought chasing them away was the height of good sport!

I can't make any excuses. I should have known better. All the streetlights were out. We had power from our generator only. It was pitch-fucking-dark out there, and she was a black lab, for Christ's sake. She probably never saw the car that got her. When she didn't come in that night, I went searching. I clambered all over the fallen trees. I drove down whatever streets were still passable, walking when I hit a dead end. We let all of our neighbors know to be on the lookout for our friend.

Guy that lived across the street from me came and told me where she lay. I drove over, picked her up, and brought her home. I buried her in a nice spot, safe from any more harm. A good spot to plant flowers, if we had a yen to. As I filled in the hole, my eyes clouded over and this cynical, grumpy old fart bawled like a child. Not the first hurt I've ever felt, and not the worst, either. But totally senseless, and I have to live with the fact that I could have easily prevented it.

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 18 Oct 2010 20:05

In theory, reality and theory are one and the same. In reality, though...

Topic What's in your mug?
Posted 18 Oct 2010 11:41

Empty, dammit. (Gotta do something about that, quick!)

Topic The Random Blurt Thread
Posted 18 Oct 2010 11:39

According to the phone call I just got, our ten-pound Yorkshire Terrier just devoured two whole 8-ounce bags of Wheat Thins crackers. Any guesses as to which end they're going to be squirted out from? angry7

Topic Create a paragraph for the person above you
Posted 15 Oct 2010 19:36

Flowers dotted the hillside as the young couple strolled through the grass toward the shade of the single tree. He took off his backpack, and unpacked the blanket. He shook it vigorously before spreading it out on the ground. She knelt, opening her basket. She laid the things out just so. POP! The dull ring of the cork giving up it's last hold on the bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon echoed faintly. She held out the glasses - real glass this time. Not those crappy fake plastic wine glasses from before. He smiled at her as he poured. For a time, the hustle and bustle of city life, was just a bad memory. All that dirt, all that filth, all the noise and confusion and headache-making stress slowly evaporated, leaving nothing but clean air and laughter. "Xuani," he said, soberly. "Ever wondered why the fuck it is that we have to keep on going back?"