Saturday, August 15, 2009

Another exercise in embarassment

I get to go shopping today! I should be thrilled that not only do I need an interview suit, but I have the money to buy it.* But I am not. In my typical eating-is-the-best-way-to-deal-with-stress way, I have gained entirely too much weight to fit in my nearly new, very stylish pin-stripe suit. So now I have to go out and buy another, slightly larger, stylish suit. I shouldn't be complaining, I know! So many people in this world would love to have the problem of too much to eat, and I should be able to walk away from the cookies, candy, and ice cream that I have been stuffing my face with. I have a membership at the local gym and no reason not to go, but here I sit getting bigger and complaining about it. I am a self-loathing mess today. Not the best frame of mind to go try to jam my over-sized derrière in a pair of slacks. Hmm. Maybe I'll try a skirt. Blargh!

*I won gift cards in a church raffle earlier in the year.

The wonder that is our boy

I mentioned before that we got our boy, Gonzo, from the Humane Society, so there was an adjustment period for both sides, as Gonzo was getting used to us and we got to know this fully grown 4-6 year old mixed breed that decidedly has some border collie in there somewhere. He's awfully clever, our boy. Every day was a new realization that there was really not a lot wrong with this dog.
He has only had one "accident" in the house in 3 years, and he was very sick at the time so it really wasn't anything he could do about it. I used to be out of the house for 12 hours at a time when I was working, too. My husband works crazy long hours as well, so Gonzo must have amazing control, of which we are too grateful.
He tolerates kids well, with the pulling and tugging of the ears and tail, although we know he would rather just be with my husband instead.
He doesn't harass our cat. At first, he really wanted to be friends with her, but Emma wasn't having it. (My husband claims that he saw Gonzo running through the house with Emma attached to his butt by her claw, but that's pretty far-fetched, dontcha think?) They just stay apart and give each other wide berths. He does have a dog aggression issue, but if he's on the leash, you can keep him under control.
Our boy definitely had some training in his background, too. He has basic commands down, like sit, stay, down, off, no, stop, leaveit, and come. He has a few odd ones we discovered, like if you say,"gogogo," he will run or get out of your way and not be underfoot (very handy!) and "back up" gives similar results if he's facing you. Also, he will "turn around," although only at certain times, like when he's sitting next to you on the sofa or by your feet on the floor. He'll turn around to sit down leaning up against you. So a sweet well-trained dog, all around.
Sometimes, he surprises us though. (We had our boy almost 2 years at this point.) One day, I was in the fridge getting a snack (imagine that!) and I had the container of cold cuts in my hand as I closed the door. The container went over Gonzo's head and he sat up! Spontaneously, without a command, all by himself, he sat up. So I tried (in vain) to get him to recreate it. "Sit up, Beg, Pretty-please..." I tried all the commands I could think of, but nothing. Ah, well, he did it once, so maybe he had done it before and I hadn't seen it? I told my husband about it when he got home to see if Gonzo had ever sat up for him. Well, his reaction was a bit over the top. My husband reached down, hugged Gonzo around the neck and said," I can't believe anyone would ever have gotten rid of this dog!" I mean, really. I said the dog sat up, I didn't say he spoke French! But I have to agree. I can't believe anyone could ever not just love our boy. Good boy, Gonzo. You're home now.

More to come, so come back if you're interested.

Friday, August 14, 2009

More of this, more of that

Well, there's nothing new to report as far as getting a new job, but I did go to a meeting last night for my extremely part time job last night. Best business meeting I have ever been to. The regional sales manager got through everything we were supposed to cover, no unreasonable requests or demands were put to us, and we had a great dinner at an Italian restaurant. (Which we were paid to eat, BTW.) All meetings should be so pleasant. I got my new schedule, and there's a lot more work for me, (yay!) Upgrades the job to very part time. Not that I am complaining, mind you, I knew it was just weekends and not even every weekend, or even both days of the weekend when I applied. It was a good idea to take this job, because even after I get my new full time job, I will be able to do this one as well. I really enjoy this job too. It's nice to enjoy what you get paid for.
The Pancake Story
So I thought I would tell you a story about our boy, Gonzo. There's quite a few of them, so I will tell them as I remember to. Around the time we first got Gonzo, we realized that he was an odd eater. Sometimes he needed encouragement to eat his dinner, although he would polish it off when he did start eating it. We determined that it was the pack thing kicking in again, and he wouldn't eat until we were finished. Of course, sometimes if we fed him when we weren't eating, he didn't know what to do, and would leave food in his dish until later.
That said, one night, my husband had made us dinner. He made pancakes, but I was really in the mood for some of the leftovers we had. So we had these leftover pancakes, and Gonzo was looking all kinds of hopeful, and in his dish they went.* He sniffed them, and followed my husband into the living room, sitting at his feet. "Ah, well, maybe he'll eat them later," and we watched tv for a while. After awhile, my husband was ready to head up to bed, so he starts up the stairs and calls to Gonzo. Gonzo, (who had not forgotten about the pancakes) ran towards the stairs. Then, seemly stopping in midair, turned and ran back towards the kitchen, and grabbed up the pancakes. He ran by me in the living room, pancakes a-flapping in his mouth. Well, I started laughing so hard, saying, "Hang on, big guy, I'm bringing the pancakes!"(I do voice-over work for Gonzo a lot.) My husband, who hadn't seen any of it, called down the stairs, "What's so funny?" I told him about the about-face and the flapping pancakes. He said, "Gonzo didn't have any pancakes when he got up here," which set me off again into a new fit of laughter. Good boy, Gonzo. No one said you had to share.

*I do not make a habit of feeding our boy table scraps or pancakes, but sometimes, he just wears me down with those hopeful puppy eyes.

More to come, so come back if you're interested.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Staying home isn't what it's cracked up to be

"Wish I could stay home and do nothing!" No, you don't. No, No,...nuh-uh, you don't. It's not as fun as one would think. It's stressful to think that your household isn't making what it used to, and I was a major contributor here. The continual disappointments of potential employers not bothering to get back to you when they said they would about job opportunities that you really thought you'd be great at. The major highlights of your day being the mail arriving and your husband coming home from work. IT'S NOT FUN.

I had a great job, that I just loved and was good at until January of this year. Great pay, great bennys, sweet car...and the work wouldn't kill anyone. The hours were long and the driving got to be less than great, but all round, one of the best jobs I've had. (That includes the job at the diner when I was a teenager where I could drink all the Mountain Dew I wanted all day, and the car parking job when I got paid twice minimum wage to hold a cardboard arrow to show people the direction to drive.) So I was actually in mourning of that loss for awhile. Being laid off has happened to me twice in the past two years (more to come on that) so I adjusted faster this time. I would still rather work the long hours, drive to another state, get stuck in road construction, soothe angry customers, and do that job than sit here, getting bigger, and talk to the dog. I like to work. I know, that must make me a weirdo, but I do.

Our boy, Gonzo, however, likes it a great deal that someone's around more. And it's not just so someone with an opposable thumb is around to work that pesky doorknob, either. He is a pack dog, with that pack dog mentality and he wants his pack here where he can see them. There's my husband, the Alpha dog, and me the Zeta dog. Actually, he's not quite sure where I fit in the pack, because I will let him eat without me eating first, and I encourage him to sleep in our bed. Apparently, that sends mixed signals to a pack-minded dog. (My sister knows about these things.) If I'm upstairs on my husband's computer, he's content to be in the living room on the sofa or the dining room right behind my chair. But if I'm downstairs on my computer, he sleeps at the top of the stairs or underneath my desk. Especially if I'm eating. Which I do too much of, if truth be told.
I have to admit, though, it's nice to have company while I'm in limbo. Good boy, Gonzo.

Come back if you're interested. More to come.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

"Trying to find a job, but it just keeps getting tougher every day..."

So I am currently way underemployed. I have a extremely part time job (not scheduled to work for the rest of the month already) and I am actively seeking. I have two jobs that I have interviewed for and am waiting to hear back from, and another two that I am going to interview with next week. That's why I'm home often enough to talk to the dog too much. Poor thing. That's him in the picture. He doesn't know what the heck I am saying, he just keeps listening in case I say, "Out," or "Eat," or " Would you like filet mignon for a snack today?" Well, I've never said that, but a dog can dream, can't he? He's a rescue dog, meaning that we saved him from the Humane Society. Well, they were taking pretty good care of him, but he wanted a home.

Gonzo's story-

My husband and I and his kids would often go the the Humane Society to drop off donations of cat and dog food that I had gotten cheap or free with coupons. (my lifelong hobby, coupon shopping for cheap stuff) While we were there, we would always go visit the puppies and the kitties (yes, I refer to full grown dogs as puppies). Our boy was there, and we met. He took to my husband immediately, but we weren't looking to get a dog just yet. I mean we had talked about getting a dog, and we now had the back yard that we needed to hold a dog, but we really weren't looking. So we left, and went about our lives.

The next week, more donations, another visit, and our boy set up such a racket when he saw my husband. (it sounded like he was being poked with a pin, kind of a "i,i,i,i" in a high pitched squeal, truly unpleasant) so of course, we all went over to see him again. "Gonzo" is his name, and he's a mixed breed, dog-by-committee kind of fellow, with a head that's too small for his body. I start the "He's was funny looking." "Whadda mean, funny looking?" dialog from Fargo, when they were describing Steve Buscemi's character. We all laugh, and hoped for the best for this poor pup with the tiny head and dated name. But we go home without him.

Another week, more donations, although I think I just brought newspapers that time to see the dog again. "I,i,i,i,i,i!" My husband stayed down at the end with Gonzo the whole time we were there, but still wasn't going to take him home. I stage-whispered to Gonzo our house number and told him to go over the wall that night. As we were walking away, my stepson said,"you're so mean; you didn't give him the street name!" That night, my husband said, " I think they going to put the orange tag next to his name. I think he's done for." We got him the next weekend.

Gonzo loves my husband with an adoration that creeps him out sometimes. Gonzo's ideal place is next to my husband on the sofa, staring at him. A dog and his boy.

More to come, so come back if you're interested.