RIP Katy

September 15th, 2014


I’ve been avoiding writing this post for almost a week. This will make it seem real.

Our cat Katy, who was staying with our good friends Erin and Rocco in Oregon while we’re in Japan, stopped eating a couple of weeks ago. Erin took her in to the vet, and they found a large cancerous tumor in her abdomen. Taking her age, health, and the fact that she hadn’t eaten in almost a week into consideration, the vet thought she wouldn’t be a good candidate for surgery, and recommended euthanasia.


Erin took Katy home. She took a few photos of her when the light was nice, and they cuddled her and loved on her and said good-bye. The next day, Rocco took her in to the vet and gave her lots of pets and chin scratches for everyone. When it was done, he took her body home and they buried her with her blanket under an apple tree on their property.

under the apple tree

For the first time in almost 20 years, we are a catless family. We said good-bye to Katy when we left her in Oregon last April, but we honestly didn’t think we were saying good-bye to her forever. We’re all pretty sad that she’s gone, but we’re so very grateful to our friends for giving her a good home for her last few months.

Now I’m certain we made the right decision when we didn’t bring her with us to Japan, even though I would have loved to have her with us, and I’m sorry that Erin and Rocco had to deal with having her put to sleep. If we’d brought her, she would have had to deal with a long plane trip, then being quarantined at the vet’s while we were in the Navy Lodge, and then quarantined in our house for months after we got here. Since she was in Oregon, she was able to go outside and had other cats and chickens to terrorize, and Erin and Rocco’s 3-year-old daughter Indy had a cat to love on. (The other four cats all tend to run away when Indy comes at them.)

Katy, you had an incredibly yowly meow and you could be a little overwhelming in your demands for attention and you were so picky you wouldn’t even eat tuna, you weirdo. But you were the sweetest, most loving cat we ever had, and your fur was the softest, and your purr was the loudest. You always knew when someone needed a cuddle and were right there to head-butt them in love and then sit with one paw resting on their arm, like you wanted to make sure they knew you were there. Rest in peace, Kater Potater.

Click on the mosaic to embiggen

This quote on my #VeronicaMars dottery mug makes me happy every time I read it, both the words and the way I painted it.

I’ve been drinking gallons of it, thanks to this cold. My whole family has had this cold. Troy, Annalie and Elliora were pretty much over it in three or four days. In me, the same cold morphed into a sinus infection and bacterial conjunctivitis.


me, Heather & Brenda
me, CC, and Brenda, taken by my mom Oct 2008

I’m on drugs for both now, so fingers crossed I’m feeling better soon. Meanwhile, today I’m missing my chance to see CC before she flies home to Northern California, and I’m actually pretty bummed about it. The last time I saw her was at Brenda’s 40th birthday extravaganza, two summers ago. We were planning to meet up when Jen and I passed through their town on our way to or from LeakyCon last June, but that didn’t work out either.


So here I am at home with two kids who are definitely feeling better, while I hack and cough my way fuzzily through the day. I guess this is one of those days when I just keep throwing one-step-from-junk food at them and thank goodness we live in the era of DVDs and are well-stocked with children’s shows and movies. And, of course, keep guzzling peppermint tea with honey.


Good-bye, Roger Ebert

April 4th, 2013

I’m truly saddened by today’s news of Roger Ebert’s death. I’ve been reading his movie reviews regularly for the past 20 years, and even when I disagreed with his opinions I enjoyed reading what he had to say anyway. Here are a few quotes mainly taken from his Chicago Sun-Times movie reviews that I’ve collected over the years. I especially love the first one.

Roger Ebert on Danny DeVito:

[H]e has a way of making the taller people around him seem unsure of what to do with their legs.

From Roger Ebert’s review of City of Angels:

Angels are big right now in pop entertainment, no doubt because everybody gets one. New Age spirituality is me-oriented, and gives its followers top billing in the soap operas of their own lives. People like to believe they have had lots of previous incarnations, get messages in their dreams and are psychic. But according to the theory of karma, if you were Joan of Arc in a past life and are currently reduced to studying Marianne Williamson paperbacks, you must have made a wrong turn.

When there’s a trend toward humility and selflessness, then we’ll know we’re getting somewhere on the spiritual front. That time is not yet.

From Roger Ebert’s review of Crime and Punishment in Suburbia:

The MPAA [ratings board] counts the beans but never tastes the soup. Make a worthless movie but limit the nudity and language, and get a PG-13. Make a movie where the characters live with real problems and try to figure out what to do, and God forbid our children should be exposed to such an experience.

From Roger Ebert’s review of Gangster No. 1:

[These events] have been called Shakespearean, which is fair enough, since just about everything is Shakespearean.

From Roger Ebert’s review of Household Saints:

The fact is that modern people do worship false gods and that a life devoted to getting a big car and a town house is seen as eminently more sane than a life devoted to God.

From Roger Ebert’s review of Joe Versus the Volcano, on Tom Hanks’s character:

[H]e is an island of curiosity in a sea of mystery.

Roger Ebert on citizens of a Newfoundland town, in his review of The Shipping News:

But, lord, the characters are tireless in their peculiarities; it’s as if the movie took the most colorful folks in Lake Wobegon, dehydrated them, concentrated the granules, shipped them to Newfoundland, reconstituted them with Molson’s and issued them Canadian passports.

RIP, Roger Ebert. Thank you a million times for changing the way I watch and think about movies, and for teaching me to judge a thing on its own merits.

Note: I would have linked the movie reviews, but Ebert’s review site seems to be down, unsurprisingly. Also, this is my 999th post. !!!