Random things I say to my dogs

In any given week, you might hear one or all of these things uttered at my house, either to or about the furchildren.

“Poop!” (After finding a deposit on the carpet, five minutes after they’ve been outside to potty. This is our most frequent exclamation.)

“Who peed in the office?”

“Time to rassle!”

“Pepper, move over.” (In the middle of the night.)

“Salsa, calm down!!”

“Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty, and I’ll give you a treat. … Pepper, please go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Please potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. Hurry up. It’s cold [or hot] out here. Go potty. Go potty. Go potty. … Good potty!”

“Don’t lick me on the mouth!”

“But we like the mailman!”

“Who turned over the trash can?”


“Who peed on the bathroom rug?”

“Don’t snatch! Be gentle.” (To Pepper, who likes to snatch her treats out of your hand.)

“That’s not very ladylike.” (To Salsa, when she flops onto her back to ask for a belly rub.)

“Dry your feet.” (Salsa’s signal to stop and wait for me when she comes in from the rain. They do have a little training.)

“Don’t bite me.” (To Salsa, who always bites my right index finger after I dry her feet.)

“Who peed in the laundry room?”

“Salsa, down!” (When someone arrives.)

“Who peed in the guest bedroom?”

“Salsa, chillax!”

“Pepper, you’re tiny.”

“Salsa, you’re pretty.”

(Whispering to Bruce) “Where’s the camera?”

“Salsa, you’re going to put my eye out with your tail.”

“Don’t bite me! I’m gonna bite you!” (During a rasslin’ match.)

“You have bad breath.”

“Don’t lick the window!”

“You stink!”

“Who needs a bath?”

“Anybody hungry?” (Just to see their joy as they race to the kitchen.)

(To both) “I love you.”

Share this post:

No complaints, Day 2

Today is technically Day 2, because I started not complaining yesterday. So I have a day and a half under my belt already!

I did a pretty decent job today, but I want to ask you whether these count:

1. Observing, as I drove home from my job at 9 p.m., that the gas at the corner is 10 cents higher than it was this morning, while remembering that last week it rose 11 cents in a day. That’s a 21-cent increase in less than a week! Does making such observations count as complaining? If everyone complains about the price of gas, does it count?

2. Having the phrase “drama queen” leap to mind in reference to another person. Maybe that’s not complaining; maybe it’s judging.

We’ll work on judging next week, right after I’ve mastered the art of complaining without sounding like I’m complaining.

Share this post:

Blue day, blue dog

Again, I let it get close to bedtime before remembering the Week of Color. (To be fair, I haven’t been home from work that long.)

Today’s color is blue.

After Salsa and Pepper frolicked on the bed for a while, Pepper suddenly scurried under her bed, where she usually sleeps (yes, in the winter, she sleeps under her bed). The bed is blue (you’ll have to take my word for it), and our cheap, dog-proof, ugly comforter has lots of blue in it, so I grabbed the camera. Weird dog to the rescue again!


Share this post:


It’s almost bedtime, and I nearly forgot about Jerusalem’s Week of Color challenge to celebrate spring. Isn’t a Week of Color a great idea?

Because I work mainly with the left side of my brain, my job is not — no matter how hard I wish it could be — to work with artsy things. So I try, when I can, to provide an “alternative perspective” (some might call it “comic relief”).

When I got to thinking about “white,” I thought I was going to fail the Day 2 assignment (Day 1 was pink, but I didn’t refer to it — my photo yesterday just happened to contain pink). Then, as often happens this time of night, I thought about my favorite bedtime treat: Old-Fashioned Low-Fat Frozen Yogurt. So here is my entry in the White category:


Then I looked at Whitney’s pink picks and remembered that I had some white pics in my previous posts: this and this.

So I’m not such a loser after all!

Mission accomplished. Now, pardon me while I go eat my frozen yogurt while it’s still frozen.

Share this post:

A dog who doesn't want a bath


Salsa hates baths. She doesn’t understand the word “bath,” because we’re careful how we phrase things around the furbabies, but I made the mistake of swishing my hand through the 2 inches of dog-shampoo water I run in the sink before I put them in. When I went to get Salsa, she must have smelled it. She tried to hide under Bruce’s desk.

Share this post:

Are you smarter than a 6-year-old?

Taking inspiration from Berit’s post, I want to ask you four of the questions she asked her son, plus one question of my own (I added #3). The answers below are mine. For Cole’s answers, you’ll have to read Berit’s post. Berit, care to share any more of Cole’s school questions?

1) If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you like to go?
Australia, especially Ayers Rock and Sydney Harbor.

2) If you could be anybody else for a day, who would you be?
The person who gets to test flavors at an ice cream company.

3) What job would you least like to have?
Cleaning up road kill.

4) What else do you like to read besides books?
a) My friends’ blogs. No, seriously. I was going to say cereal boxes (to indicate that my love of reading is so intense that I will read just about anything), but blogs are more interesting, especially the ones written by my friends. It’s such a great new way of getting to know people you see maybe once a week. I have gotten to know Berit more through our blogs than anywhere else. b) News. c) Articles and essays on writing and editing, on words and how to use them well. d) Personal-finance stuff. I like to find ways to teach people how to make the most of their “treasures on earth.” e) The Bible. It’s the best source of inspiration, information, encouragement, training, correction and Truth you could ever ask for.

5) Do you think you’re smart?
I’m smart enough to know that’s a loaded question.

Now it’s your turn …

Share this post:

Gotta blog

Sometimes you gotta blog because … well, just cuz.

Because it’s fun, and a way to express yourself, release tension, get some of those random thoughts out of your head … just cuz.

In WordPress, you can check your blog stats and see how many people have checked you out.

My “Best Day Ever” was Nov. 29 — the day after my birthday — with 66 views. Wow, my readership must have been touched by my homemade-flower picture and the heartwarming story of my loving husband’s selfless gift.

Imagine my disappointment the day I discovered that my blog had been accessed by something like 1,300 people in the few weeks I had been posting.

Yes, disappointment.

I know I don’t have that many friends, I told Bruce. They must have told their friends. People are Googling me and clicking on my blog! I’m well-known in the blogosphere!

And my ever-supportive husband was there for me once again. He reminded me that the world contains all sorts of people … spammers, hackers, geeks — all kinds of greedy entrepreneurs who trawl cyberspace for e-mail addresses, personal information, any tidbit they can use to make money.

And those spammers were probably responsible for most of the 1,300 hits.


Of course I knew that. But before he brought me back to earth, I had been queen for a moment.

I’ve never been popular, and usually it doesn’t bother me.

But I do want to be liked. And I like knowing that my friends and loved ones read my blog, enjoy it and occasionally get a chuckle from it.

In my dreams — some of them, at least — I’m hilarious, the life of the party, unself-conscious, witty, charismatic, beautiful. (In my other dreams I’m a world-class pianist who can tear up a keyboard like nobody’s business.)

In the blogging world, I tend to take on the tone and language of whomever I read last or have been thinking about (even those who go weeks without posting!). I have a couple of hilarious blogging friends. When I read their posts, I get hip, talk cool and know all the latest pop culture references. In those moments, I am queen of the blogosphere.

Dream on.

In the real world, I’m just a regular gal, and that works for me most of the time.

Gotta blog? Post your comments below.

Share this post:

Suzo Science (not to be confused with pseudoscience)

Many of you, if you’ve ever read a newsmagazine or watched TV — or perhaps read through the letter P in the dictionary — are familiar with the term pseudoscience. It’s stuff real scientists consider wacko, or at least unfounded.

But let me introduce you to Suzo Science — a science that is not at all wacko (at least in the mind of its founder).

The principles of Suzo Science lack endorsement in the mainstream scientific community, but let’s not let that stop us from benefiting from its sagacity.

Examples of Suzo Science:

The Grocery Lane Blues. The mainstream scientific community might discuss this phenomenon with references to the Laws of Probability or some such blather. But Suzo Scientists know that it is related more to karma than to mathematical theory. When a Suzo Scientist chooses which lane to stand in at the grocery store, much deliberation can take place in the space of a few seconds. Typically she chooses incorrectly. You might think she should choose the lane with the fewest people. For others, this might be the right choice; for a Suzo Scientist, it depends on how her attitude has been in the previous 24 hours. If she has been impatient with her co-workers, overindulgent at the dinner table and judgmental of someone different from her that day, it doesn’t matter what lane she chooses or how many (or few) people are in line ahead of her – that lane will always take the longest. Karmic payback.

The Dog Poop Game. If a Suzo Scientist had a small dog who relieved herself whenever and wherever she pleased, dog experts would say the dog needed further training. But a Suzo Scientist would know that the Law of Cute but Stubborn Little Dogs was at play here. The dog may have had extensive training – by three sets of parents – and was just too stubborn to do her business in the proper place. In this situation, the Suzo Scientist always chooses incorrectly. For instance, when the small dog fidgets, barks or otherwise seems to be giving “the potty signal,” the Suzo Scientist might haul herself out of bed (even if it is 4 a.m. and the temperature is 30 and it’s raining) on the off chance that the small dog is telling the truth. After all, if she didn’t let the dog out, the dog would think its signals – barking, dancing in circles and pawing at the sleeping Suzo Scientist – are worthless and stop giving said signals. Even if the signals usually mean, “Feed me, servant – I don’t care when my real mealtime is.”

Which Bluejeans to Wear Today. Before the Suzo Scientist starts a new job, her supervisor may tell her that the publisher says bluejeans are OK as long as they are “nice jeans.” So she may go out and purchase a pair of “nice jeans” because her favorite jeans – the ones she wore every single day (even to church) when she was a freelancer working from home – are a bit faded. And she really prefers jeans to dress slacks when she can get away with it. But then she starts her job and begins noticing that her co-workers’ bluejeans aren’t all that “nice.” But she’s new and wants to keep observing the situation for a while. So finally she wears the faded jeans, thinking something along the lines of, “The publisher works out of a different office in a different city, and I’ve never seen him in our office.” So she wears the comfortable, favorite, faded jeans. And guess who shows up that day. (Similar to the Law of Wash Your Car and it Will Rain.)

These are just a few examples of Suzo Science. More will be published when the Laws of Gotta Finish the Electronic Newsletter That’s Already a Day Late aren’t at play.

Stay tuned.

Share this post: