Sergeant 1995-2008

Y’all don’t know Sergeant. She, a Rottweiler, belongs to our friend Kristin.

Kristin had to put her to sleep this afternoon.

I only knew her at the end of her life. To me she was a crochety old dog, but she was sweet. She still hobbled around on her arthritic legs, wanting me to play fetch with her. And when I picked up Ginger last month, she came in and greeted me, made sure I wasn’t an intruder, then went back outside.

Kristin loved you very much, and you gave her many years of joy. I’ll miss you, too.

Birthday greetings to…


I got some sleep last night, as opposed to Tuesday night. This requires the back story.

We’re dog-sitting Ginger again, as Kristin is in Scottsdale, AZ, for a week-long test of an application (she works for the U.S. government). Kristin’s parents usually keep a eye on the dogs, but they went out of town yesterday. I picked up Ginger from her house Tuesday night after school. That was going to be interesting, because I would have to contend with Sergeant, Kristin’s 15-year old Rotti bitch1. This is, of course, after watching the latest episode of Dogs 101 on Animal Planet which mentioned that Rottis have the most powerful jaws in dogdom. And I’ve seen the results of a bite on Kristin (last year when leaving Rio Del Mar…Sergeant did not want to get in the car). But the last few times I’ve seen Sergeant, she’s been very nice and sweet to me…but that was when either Kristin was around, or not at home. So I was trepidatious, to say the least.

When I got there, I called out Sergeant’s and Ginger’s names so they knew I was there, and of course they barked. They were outside (Kristin has a doggie door). I went inside, and it took a few seconds before Ginger came running in, all exited to see me. Then Sergeant comes in. She sniffs me, and then starts nuzzling my hand. I can tell from her face that she’s happy to see me. I pet her and give her platitudes. Then I start looking around for Ginger’s stuff (bed, leash, food). I get it and start to take it to the car. At this point Sergeant realizes that I’m just taking Ginger, not her. So she goes back outside. And that’s the last I see of her.

I take Ginger to our house. Ginger and Oscar are best buds. It’s playtime! And playtime! And playtime! But eventually it’s bed time. We go through the dog-sitting ritual of closing the bedroom door and letting the cats roam around the rest of the house. And…it’s apparent that Ginger must not have done anything Monday and Tuesday, because… She. Will. Not. Go. To. Sleep. She wants to play! Even Oscar wants to sleep. She would lie down, but then if one of us just rolled over, boom, she’s up jumping around the bed. I would go all César Millán on her to get her energy levels down, but that would only work for a while, until the next time one of us stirred. I think Cheri and I each got a grand total of about one hour sleep Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. I was feeling like one of my French seat mates and partners in crime assignments, Katie; she’s a pseudo-au pair for her aunt and uncle, and takes care of her two-year-old cousin for the moment since her aunt gave birth a couple of weeks ago (past the due late). So Katie has been a bit stressed and sleep-deprived over the past month. (One of these days I’ll post on Katie. She’s made a lot of big changes in her life…and she only graduated high school this past June. For her age, she’s one of the most mature, experienced people I’ve met. She’s one of those that gives me hope for the youth of today.)

So yesterday we encouraged Oscar and Ginger to play a lot. And we took them to Marco Dog Park last night. And that worked (probably combined with the lack of sleep yesterday)…she slept the entire night.

But I’m still tired this morning…

1–Hee, hee. I said “bitch.” Hee, hee.

Celebrity sightings

It’s not often you get to sit down and chat with a rock star. But here in Sacramento, celebrities don’t have a big head, and one even brings his three dogs to Marco Dog Park, and joins us our group for conversation.

And he even plays fetch with Oscar. And gives him great big pats. And Oscar tries to return the favor and jump in his lap. Bad dog!

Another one of our regular group even named his dog after the band.

ION, 90°? In April? And triple digits and brush fires down south? WTF happened to spring?

A fun weekend, for once

This weekend, we actually did something, although it took instigation from someone else.

Our friend Kristin scored some free movie tickets, apparently by buying the right frozen foods at Safeway. So she e-mailed and said did we want to join her. Not being one to turn down a free movie, especially since there was one that I was actually interested in for once, we said sure. When we figured out that we’d go to the theater right nearby, I said that she should bring her dog Ginger over, and Oscar could have a play date. We also said we’d buy dinner.

Kristin and Ginger come over, and the romp begins. (Ahem. The dogs, you sicko.) Oscar and Ginger just start running around the house (except the bedroom, where we’ve locked up the cats) and are wrestling and playing. We finally get them out back and off to Bravo! Pastaria. If you find yourself in the Roseville area, and have a hankering for some good Italian food with a twist, check them out, and say hi to Mark, the owner. The food is great, the service is great, the prices are reasonable. And they have a good wine selection.

We come back home for a few minutes, and let the dogs in. Wrestling continues. We get them back out, and then off to the movie – 21. Not a bad movie. It’s based on the true story of M.I.T. students who (aw, crap, no wonder my alarm didn’t go off this morning…it just went off. *runs down hall* Sorry, Cheri!) used their phenomenal memories to count cards and won millions at blackjack. There’s a lot of artistic license, including security goons, but it was good entertainment, for the price of a large soda and a box of Red Vines (shared with Cheri).

We came back, and the two dogs were patiently waiting at the back slider. Awww. They exhausted themselves. We open the door, and…round three! Sure, they’re exhausted. Sure they’re tired. After about 15 minutes of having to have pleasant conversation, we just give up for the evening (it was getting late for 3 middle-aged folks, anyway), and we said good night to Kristin and Ginger. Oscar? Well, he was exhausted, after all. He jumped on the bed, and did not move all night. Really. He was in the exact same position in the morning when we woke up.

That’s the fun. Sunday, we did accounting homework (online), interrupted by internet problems, while watching the NASCAR. Then we took Oscar to the dog park. And it was Opening Night. I must say, the Nats’ new ballpark is very nice, but let’s be honest—the Mt. Rushmore presidents racing around the park are a bit scary. (Damn Braves bullpen.)

I’m going to bounce the router once I post this—if I can post successfully. Thank $DEITY for Semagic and the ability to save a draft.

Chronicles of the re-employed – week 1

Not all that bad, actually. Still some hiccups with setting up of communications and Lotus Notes (*gah*, it’s still a large volume of excretory matter even after all these years). I’m starting to feel productive, as I’m setting up a sandbox system for me to play with.

And today I may have broken one of the development systems, twice, but it wasn’t intentional…

*phone rings*

That was the president, who also does a lot of our system management. And it’s probably coincidence.

z/OS speak