Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Now What?

I graduated from my force free dog training course on Sunday. We met with two final clients, we got feedback, we received our diplomas, we had a party,'s over.

Now what?

Now I work toward getting 300 hours of practical experience so that I can take the CPDT test, which is the only national accreditation test for positive reinforcement trainers. You have to know science to take it. Science I have been taught but that I will need to work really hard on. You have to work with a lot of clients. In January of 2014 they tightened their requirements so that instead of having five years to complete the 300 hours you have 3. That's 100 hours per year. My goal date is May 31, 2016. I'd sure like to get it done faster than that, though.

So, it's not like I don't know what I have to do. There are vague plans to do so. This morning in the park, though, a dog owner approached me and asked for my services and I didn't have a business card to hand him or a website to send him to. I didn't miss the opportunity, I gave him my personal email, but it wasn't terribly smooth. The plans have to stop being vague. The outreach needs to start being active. I can't let fear hold me back, right?

In the shot above Bu and Ed look worried. If the fear holds me back they might get fewer treats and that's just unacceptable.

*Please disregard my filthy yoga pants, the grossness of which I somehow enhanced when I processed this photo.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Happy Birthday To Her

Usually on this, the third Saturday of June, I would already be eating fried clams and slathering my scantily clad self in makeup for The Coney Island Mermaid Parade. This year we're taking a different path. Though, like the first year we marched, the parade lands on Alita's actual birthday she asked if we could forgo it in favor of the Relay for Life. She wanted to honor a friend whose cancer had killed him by participating and we couldn't do both. So instead of getting sunburned and silly in sparkles she'll be walking her portion of the relay and then we'll meet for sushi. I've just baked the cupcakes and I'll do some minimal decorating. It'll be easier to transport them since they don't have to be carried through the parade as well. Tonight at dinner I can meet one of her friends, hear about the relay, and watch her blow out her candles a 13th time.

Am I disappointed to miss the parade? Well, a tiny bit. The thing is, though, when someone wants to do something honorable and selfless like this it sweeps the disappointment to the side. I am always proud to know this kid but today I'm feeling even a little bit luckier. She continues to be a kind, thoughtful, strong person. I think that's awesome. I hope I can be as good a human as she is.

Happy 13th birthday you wonderful young lady! I can't wait to celebrate with you tonight.

Thursday, June 19, 2014


Izzy was a flirt and an independent soul. She was good to Ed but didn't indulge his bossier, bad boy side. She was diagnosed with cancer a few weeks ago and we thought there would be more time. Last night her pain was too great and her people helped her go.

And it sucks.

Treats for everyone in Izzy's memory and honor, please. Fuck cancer right in the ear.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Photo Challenge: SOUL

Hey, we even have a new photog in the mix this time. Exciting! A good time to remind everyone that comments and feedback (here and on Flickr) are love.

Our Bethany goes straight for the windows. I want to know how she got this awesome shot.

If ever there were a soulful pup it is Our Sara's boy.

I need to ask Our Ana what happened when you answered that woman's question.

One of the people in this picture has plenty of soul. (Technically I did not take this picture, Our Misti did. But I set it up and handed her my phone.)

I keep coming back to Our Alisun's pic and wondering if it's a good thing or a bad thing for people to keep off your soul. What do you think?

Here is the place where I usually put a prompt. You know what? It's summer (or it will be in the middle of our prompt period)! Nobody needs homework. We're going prompt-free for this one. Can't wait to see what you put on offer!

Please enter by 9am Tuesday July 1st for posting on July 2nd. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Photo Challenge: MEMORY

What was I going to say? I don't remember.

From a trip Our Bethany recently took to her past. This is one of many smiles.

Apparently this isn't the first time Our Janet has entered this one into a MEMORY photo challenge. I love it every time!

This was a moment during the last little bit of practical preparation before I left for London for a year. The fact that it was 20 years ago baffles me. 

I would make up memories to go with this shot of Our Ana's

Next prompt it SOUL. I can't even explain. 

Please enter by 9am Tuesday June 17th for posting on June 18th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and SOUL. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Strapping Old Man

I used to work for a billionaire. People either idolize this guy, vilify him, or have no idea who he is so I don't spend a ton of time talking about him. Sometimes I'm met with surprise that I wouldn't have a nice chat with that first group of people, though. Why wouldn't I want to give them the gift of a little insight into the inner life of their idol? Well, there's some truth to that saying about not wanting to know how the sausage is made.

Speaking of sausage...

After I'd been in the job for some time my boss was scheduled to have a common outpatient procedure with his urologist. Apparently even a billion dollars should only be split among so many heirs. There are a few things one must do to prepare for this procedure in order to facilitate recovery. The great thing about being a billionaire is that you don't have to do those things yourself. Which is how I found myself wandering the streets of Manhattan's Midtown West looking for a jock strap.

By far the saddest and most humiliating stop on this tour of unlikely establishments was a fancy mountain climbing and camping store. My hopes had already been dashed at several nearby drug stores. I mean, they sell slings for your arm and no skid pads for your cane why not this slightly more intimate no skid sling that I needed? I slunk into the high end store and began to wander. I had no idea where the jock straps might be kept so I bounced from the water bottle section (surely not!) to the shoe section (I don't know, maybe they'd be lumped in with the socks) and finally found myself listlessly wandering the men's clothing section (why didn't I start here?) hoping to ambush a display of rugged intimate apparel.

Just as I was about to depart the store and pound the pavement some more I was approached by a sales associate. He was, of course, not just any sales associate. He was gorgeous. He had the fitness required at such an establishment. His hair was braided in this incredibly compelling way. He was a little taller than me but not much. His skin was smooth and dark. When he spoke he was genuine and kind. "Can I help you find anything?"

Oh god no. My mind raced. Well, yes, but before I tell you please know that it's for my boss. He's having a...procedure. I'm an actress! I just needed the money while I'm getting back on my feet from going away to school. But...yes...I am hoping that you have this item....for my boss....he's very old, this is just the way he does things I wouldn't do this normally in a job. I mean, I would, I'm a good employee! I know this is weird, though. I'm not this weird normally. I mean I am but...I get his hearing aids cleaned, too!

What came out of my mouth, though, was the simple truth, "Yes. I was wondering, do you sell jock straps?"

His eyes widened. So did mine. "No, we don't."

"Thank you!"

I raced out of the store cursing fate. I hope he didn't get reprimanded for not asking me if there was anything else he could help me with. The most beautiful man I'd had the pleasure to address in, probably, years and this is what happened.

My tenure at that job was riddled with indignities but the jock strap incident had to have been the first  that punctured my soul.