Sunday I was folding some laundry on my bed, and I saw this:
I thought maybe I’d dropped a lipstick. That’s not a thing that I do, dropping a lipstick. I have a very strong respect for my unnecessarily large lipstick collection but hey, it could happen. Especially when I made a point earlier this week to empty all my purses and bags since I’M NOT GOING ANYWHERE ANY TIME SOON. I kept folding laundry, and I kept finding more spots. . .
They eventually led to a Puggle. More specifically, the Fuggle.
Upon closer inspection, it was revealed that Jack had a pink paw:
A yellow/orange paw:
And a red paw:
When I saw the paws, I had a strong suspicion of where he’d been and what he’d done. I picked him up (so as to avoid any more artistic creations) and carried him down to #4’s empty room, where the evidence was undeniable.
We’re not entirely sure why he climbed onto the desk in the first place. It’s not his usual middle-aged Puggle routine, climbing on things. Best we can figure is he was interested in the smells, and she’d been away from the room for like 20 minutes, so he missed her (he’s a little codependent). He left a trackable path from the desk, to her bed, to the floor, up the stairs, down the hall, to my bedroom.
#4 is painting a second version of this painting. I can’t wait to see them hanging side by side.
So. What’s your dog into these days?
**No Puggle was harmed in the writing of this blog post. All paints came safely off all Puggle parts, including the back-foot-to-face transfer from where he was scratching himself (as a Puggle is wont to do).
Boy, there was a lot of swearing the last time I was here. I thought about editing it out, but then I thought ah, screw it.
Well, that’s not exactly what I thought. . .
Besides, everything I said then was true (except my erroneous belief that my show at that time would run out the year).
How’s your quarantine?
I’m nonessential. My entire household is unemployed. As a matter of fact, everything I’ve ever done to earn money is currently banned (which sounds a lot more badass if you take it out of context, so please do). Stagehands are well acquainted with the lack of job security in our chosen field, but even so, I always said that all the way at the end of the world they would still need a sound guy. Remember Mars Attacks? Silly me. That was an alien invasion, not a pandemic. Pandemics require only broadcast sound guys.
I’m taking unemployment for the first time in my life. Well, I think I am, anyway. Navigating the New York State Unemployment website is one of the circles of hell (it’s in the middle somewhere, like maybe Four and a Half- between Greed and Anger) and I’m never really sure if what I did took and I haven’t seen the money yet, although it’s possible it’s loaded onto that debit card* that they sent me even though I asked them not to and to just put it in my bank account, please. They do send me a lot of things in the mail, but none of them are money.
I’m not going crazy, not really. I was going crazy before. Before, with the commute and the not enough sleep and the countless doctor’s appointments to figure out why my foot is still screwed up after surgery; with the one day off a week and trying to do all of the life things and failing; being totally drained and not having anything left to give to the people I love. Before, with the not having the energy to workout, or the emotional fortitude to carry on a conversation. That was crazy making. That was rage making.
So I welcome the respite. As an introvert, I’m pretty content (although, there are a large number of people in my home and THEY NEVER GO ANYWHERE!) Before all of this, I would drift away in daydreams and fantasize about being bored. Now I’m neither productive, nor bored. I go back and forth between feeling like I’m living in a bubble, and then being pretty sure that we’re all gonna die and we can’t actually protect ourselves.
I’m cool with it right now.
CC and #5 have been building our patio.
They bust their asses all day, spreading gravel, hauling rocks, sweating.
My project has been the attic. I’m shredding documents that never needed to be kept in the first place that are 20 years old. I’m currently working on a laundry basket full of random shit that was clearly removed from The Pile en masse in 2006; I’m opening still-sealed mail that’s 14 years old.
And not to be all sappy and shit, but it’s been a real treat to pretend to be like normal people and have family dinners and take walks and see daylight. The Puggles are so happy to have so many laps home, all the time.
So tell me, how’s your quarantine? What sucks about it? What’s good about it? What’s something that surprises you about it?
Making no promises here about the frequency of posts that may or may not be coming up. I haven’t even decided if I’m going to fix things like the fact that my WordAds appears to be advertising to me to sign back up. But I just wanted to put something out there, and see what comes back.
*Update: The state DID, in fact load it onto that debit card that I didn’t ask for. Unclear yet if it’s real money that I can spend.
I’ve been hanging with #5 today. He’s taller every time I see him, which right now is only every Sunday. He’s fourteen. A freshman. Still chatty. He’ll hug me again now, but only sideways and only as long as I don’t make eye contact with him.
Now, I don’t know if this is a boys vs girls thing, or a unique characteristic to #5, but holy cow he’s a space cadet right now. At least, I hope it’s just right now. I hope that it’s a phase and not the permanent state of things. It’s truly remarkable, the private world he lives in.
Yesterday he had a morning scouting event. He knew he’d be getting home after the rest of us had left for work, and before Kelsey* came. Yet, he neglected to bring his house key.
He called me when he was locked out to see when I’d be back.
We have a shared online family calendar. Each family member’s activities are indicated by their own colored dot (the dogs have a dot too, as does Kelsey. There are a lot of dots). I actually keep it updated and do nifty things like send reminders to everyone for events such as trash day– reminders which are promptly ignored. #5 can view, with two swipes on his phone, where everyone is right now. Besides this completely functional calendar, there is the fact that I’ve been in production ALL YEAR. If it’s not Sunday, and it’s not between the hours of 12:30am and 6am, I’m either at work or in transit.
Also? When I’m not in production, at 2pm on any given Saturday, I’m doing a show. That’s been my schedule for roughly the past 20 years. I can see how he might not have that down yet.
This morning, I had a couple songs from Daydream Nation stuck in my head. Since I had to work at my computer in the dining room, I set up a Sonic Youth station on Pandora. I knew it wouldn’t go well for long, but I got excited when “Teenage Riot” was the first song played. We sat at the table, me doing the budget and #5 doing homework while it cycled through Pixies and Nirvana and then started going south. Finally, he spoke up.
#5: So, what genre is this exactly? Because it sounds like pain and suffering. This music is the end of the movie where people are dying and everyone is losing things.
#5 operates under the delusion that it is possible to half-ass the chore of taking the dogs out. He believes he can take one dog out and not the other, or else not give them the time required while outside to complete all the items on their to-do list.
But the Puggles would make awful drummers. Their timing is terrible.
If you take only one dog out, the other one runs to the window exactly 45 seconds after you’ve shut the door. When you take the second one out after bringing in the first, the first one watches from the window and then when you return, attempts to convince you that they weren’t finished and need to go back out. If that dog happens to be Casey, it’s true. She needs approximately six times as long as Jack to figure things out when she’s outside. This one-in-one-out routine can go on all day.
But every single time one dog is asking to go out, #5 takes only that dog.
This morning, #5 took Jack outside. Like clockwork, Casey ran to the window and stared out. I figured I’d stop it all mid-cycle and harnessed her up. I went outside with her, told #5 she was feeling left out and handed him Casey’s leash.
Passed him the leash with the dog attached to it.
Which he reached out and took from me.
I’d scarcely sat back down when he came back in with them.
Me: Thanks, bud. Did Casey go?
Me: Did Casey go? You didn’t have her out there very long.
#5: I didn’t take Casey out.
There followed a back and forth, with me recounting to him the story I just told here. Afterwards, he just stared at me, totally not believing me.
#5: How is it even possible that you handed me Casey’s leash and I didn’t even see her?
Me: That is an excellent question. Welcome to my world.
*Kelsey is our main Adult In Charge. That’ll be another post sometime.