IN MY OPINION
Books Read in 2006
LIKE A ROBOT
5 December 2006
Lizzie was lying on the floor of the living room playing with something. It looked like a sock. I was staggering to the bathroom with a handful of Kleenex-wrapped puppy shit.
"What do you have in your mouth?" I asked, then added, waving my arm limply, "Oh what the heck...I don't really care."
I walked into the bathroom and glanced at my face in the mirror. My hair was sticking straight up like I had created mousse assisted spikes. There were circles under my eyes.
It had been a long night.
I was also worried about Panda, who had refused food both mid-day and at night. She had played in the afternoon, but I was aware that she had slept more than she usually did. One of the puppies has a touch of diarrhea and I suspected it might be Panda, though I haven't actually watched her yet. At least I know she's getting plenty of water.
We gave the puppies playtime and they all passed out around 10 p.m. I was hopeful.
They've all become very demanding of me. When I sit down, they all want to be in my lap and all try to climb up my knee. Two is about all I can handle at one time, though I have occasionally managed three. When I get up, they try to climb into the chair I've just left.
At 11, with them finally all asleep, I went off to sleep. The thing about sleeping on the couch under an uncovered window is that unless the sun is definitely up, you can't really tell from the sky what time it is. It's surprising how "light" the sky looks through bleary eyes when it's still the middle of the night.
I heard the puppies and tried to determine if it was actually getting light or if it was my imagination. It's really nice that the puppies are so fastidious and won't poop in their pen, but it also means that I am more conscientious about getting them out because I know when they sound frantic that they really are. (Sometimes as I'm picking a puppy up, she'll be peeing because she knows she's about to be able to.)
There was a time when we just layered the kitchen floor with newspapers and puppies chose a "poop area" and a play area. That worked very well. But it left black marks on the linoleum that never really left, and I don't want to do that on the Pergo.
I staggered out into the kitchen to look at the clock, hoping desperately to see that it was 5:00. It wasn't. It was 1:00. I knew what that meant. It meant that after they pooped, played, tired out and went back into the pen, they would be up again in a couple of hours.
I decided the hell with it. I locked Sheila and Lizzie in the living room so I didn't have to worry about their being too rough with the puppies (and at that hour it was almost a given since they are as enthusiastic about playing with the puppies in the middle of the night as I am). I got a blanket for me, turned off the lights, climbed into the recliner, turned on the TV to Meet the Press, which I figured would put me to sleep, and I just left the puppies out all night.
I won't say that it was a night of deep sleep. I was aware of the puppies all night long, though I know I did sleep intermittently. We finally all got up at 6. Panda ate a little, but not as much as she usually does. I spent a lot of time picking up poop from after breakfast, from the middle of the night, from...whenever.
I began to feel like a robot.
I finally got all the poop picked up and came into my office to find another pile directly under my desk.
"SHIT!" I shouted, not as a bit of identification, but as an expression of how I was feeling.
I got that cleaned up, sat down at my desk and felt a tapping on my shoulder. It was Lizzie, reminding me that she hadn't been fed yet.
Lizzie and Sheila have developed this weird new dynamic. Lizzie never starts eating until Sheila starts eating, in deference to Sheila's "top dog" status. Sheila is fed on one side of the room and Lizzie on the other. But lately, Lizzie won't start eating until Sheila is finished , but when Sheila is finished, she comes over to eat whatever Lizzie hasn't eaten. Lizzie, being respectful steps aside when Sheila takes over. This means that unless I stand there to keep Sheila from Lizzie's bowl, Lizzie won't get anything to eat and Sheila will have too much.
But Lizzie starts eating either like a gourmand, or like someone who is afraid at any moment her food is going to be taken away from her. She will eat two mouthfuls and then look over her shoulder or go check on what Sheila is doing.
I wish the damn dogs would just eat and not turn it into another need for me to intervene. I have, on more than one occasion, taken Lizzie's bowl away from her when she seems so disinterested.
As the dogs were finishing their breakfast, Walt came down and it was time to make his toast. (With the groggy way I was feeling he's lucky I didn't pour him a bowl of kibble!)
Finally, by 8 a.m., all the puppies were fed and sound asleep. Sheila and Lizzie were fed. Walt was fed. I sat down at my desk and the barking outside started.
I got Lizzie back inside and things quieted down again. Walt left for work, stopping to pet the puppies in the pen because they were looking at him. arrrrggggghhhhh! As he walked out the door, the puppies started screaming again, because they thought they were going to get picked up. I took them outside, where Lizzie began attacking Pinkie. I also noticed that Lizzie has been dragging all of the towels I've been using to mop up the urine outside.
I finally rescued the puppies from Lizzie, got them back in the pen and quiet, if not yet sleeping.
I had errands to run at some point today and
decided that this was the perfect time to do it before I get violent.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
(I sound grumpy, but I still really love
This is entry #2441