HAFA ADAI: JTG is a pan-dimensional sentient life-form composed of pure quantum energy. In order to more easily observe and fully interact with the mostly harmless resident beings of this space-time continuum, JTG acquired a corporeal humanoid form via a materialization process from a Monterey Bay fog bank into a lettuce field in the Salinas Valley of Central California. As incredible as it seems, JTG's life is based on a true story. Via this virtual interface, JTG issues interesting and important random reverberations about Life, the Universe, and Everything. And now you know more than you ever thought possible. So long and thanks for all the fish! Lather. Rinse. Repeat. We now return you to your regularly scheduled Astrology reading. AD ASTRA!!!
On the idea of measurement units, I keep hearing people referring to “Ton” as a measurement unit in situations were it’s not likely they mean weight. For example, in a news story I heard someone talk about “a ton of experts” A ton-weigh of experts, weight wise, would be 2000 pounds, or about 10-15 experts. However if a ton, as a number, were meant to be 2000, as a ton-number, then a ton of experts meaning 2000 experts would be impressive.
Yesterday marked five years since we broke up, and we were no longer “We”.
It’s an easy date to remember, two days before Christmas, and while in retrospect I should have expected something bad was about to happen, it still caught me mostly unprepared and devastated me at the time.
She was, by far, the most significant non-family relationship of my life. Meeting her changed my life, and the break up again changed my life, and I would not be where I am or doing what I am if I’d never met her.
People who knew me while we were together know how much she meant, and people who knew me at the time of the breakup know how fractured that made me and altered my life’s course in many ways.
She’s been in my mind every single day since, although as time has gone on, she passes in front of my mental eyes less and less. I can see the day coming where I will rarely think of her. If someone else had come along to supplant her in the meantime, perhaps I wouldn’t still think of her as much, but no, at least not yet.
I have not seen nor heard from her in years. However, since she knew who I was for three years via my public internet posts before we actually met face-to-face, it’s plausible that she sometimes still reads some of my public posts, and may read this one; or, perhaps she has mostly forgotten about me altogether, and rarely thinks of me. I wonder if she thinks of me fondly, or as a mistake to be hidden from all even herself. I know she is now married, so even if we met again, nothing could ever be remotely like it was, especially given the cold way we broke up.
As the song goes, I’m almost over her, and I’ve almost shook these blues. I still miss, something, about our past relationship; but probably not her, per se. After all this time, she is unlikely to be much like the woman I loved and knew, nor am I the man she knew. I suppose I miss the feeling of understanding, partnership, and friendship, even if it eventually faded away, even if it might have been somewhat an illusion. It’s a feeling, and a reality, I’d like to find again in another relationship, but so far have not.
I have come so far since then, and I have a long way yet to sojourn in my life’s voyage.
My 18ish year old dog Norman York Tzu crunched into a duck carcass that my kitten Apophis Maukat had knocked onto the floor. I pulled him away from it, but Norman got a bone stuck in his mouth that I didn’t find, and it developed into a painful infection that resulted in a trip to the vet.
So with Dad away for Thanksgiving weekend, I’ve been reorganizing and cleaning the house while he’s out of the way and I can scatter things as I sort without worrying about him tripping over things.
One thing I’m doing is going though a dresser that still has a lot of my mother’s things in it’s drawers. It’s not totally untouched over the years, but a lot of my mothers “treasures” from the day she died are still in the drawers and going through it is bringing up a lot of memories and feelings.
Some things are obvious what they are, for example a wallet with her driver’s license and a bunch of her credit cards. There are many unsent greeting cards for various holidays and other occasions. Some are obvious who they were intended for, such as the “Granddaughter” card must have been intended for Stephanie, the only Granddaughter she had at the time. There are a bunch of cassette tapes of various music recordings that she liked.
There’s a bag filled with old shoelaces and lace doilies in there.
There are several sets of her dentures are in there, although I don’t know which, if any, are from the day she died, or whether she was buried with her final set of dentures.
There’s an old “AM/FM Radio-Telephone-Toilet Paper holder” that I remember my mother had in the bathroom for a long time. I may put batteries it it to see if it still works. It looks like something, likely a previous dog, chewed the phone plug off, but that should be simple to fix.
There are various mementos of our family travels,
Some items are more utilitarian, such as a big bag of sissors, various electrical cords, and a lot of sewing supplies. There are blocks and balls of cedar to give the drawers a distinctive scent. Also bags of cedar shavings and other Potpourri.
There were a bunch of paper strips labeled “Hagerly Silver Care Specialists Since 1895″. At first, I had no idea what they were, but then I googled them and found they are used in silver storage by putting them in places where silver is kept to keep it from tarnishing. They apparently only have a useful life of six months, and it will be twenty years in March, plus however longer they’d been in there before Mom’s death. It shows that at one time she had kept silver in that drawer.
The meanings of other items are less obvious, such as several knitted items. Did she knit them, did HER mother or her niece Penny (my first cousin, now long lost but may still be out there) make any of them? Maybe she just bought them, even though they look home-made? In short, what did she make, and what did she not. In a connected way, this is why I as a budding professional artist mark all my work so that it’s clear I am the creator. The difference between something ending up in a dumpster or hanging on a wall or in a display case may be the mark that connects it to me. For now, those items go aside, but unless one of my siblings recognize them, I may never know for sure if any of them were Mom’s creations.
As I do this, my kitten Apophis Maukat keeps playing, grabbing at things and crawling into the drawers and boxes and is having a great time. Norman York Tzu dog and the kitten are constantly underfoot and every step must be watched so I don’t kick or crunch one of them.
I found a few pieces I made in high school at class, such as a cutout plastic foot in one of the drawers. There may be more stuff I made in there yet.
There are several more drawers to go though, and it’s time that I finish the sorting. There’s nothing too valuable, short of a few face-value coins. The jewelry and other intrinstic valuables have been long removed elsewhere and distributed and what little jewelry that remains is cheap costume jewelry.
I’ll soon consolidate the most notable and keepable items into one or two drawers, and some into boxes. This dresser has 9 drawers so that’s a lot of newly usable space.
One reason this is such a big deal for me is that when my mother died, I wanted to go through her stuff slowly, like an archeological dig, cataloging her stuff and the order it was placed; perhaps a bet excessive, but I had spent most of the last 8 months of her life recording virtually virtually every word, much of it asking her question about her life in order to write her life’s story. I still have those tapes and I will do it someday.
However, my father and siblings had other ideas, and literally as soon as my mother’s body was out of the house, they started packing up stuff and throwing out boxes of stuff with barely any examination. My father, unknown to me at the moment, took a bunch of her old clothing to the Salvation Army, including a green cloth coat that she used to wear that are one of the earliest memories of her. A few hours after her body had been take from the house, I went to look for the coat, which had been hanging in the garage, and it was gone already. Dad deals with grief by throwing away stuff. I was in Guam when his father died, but I understand he got rid of all his father’s clothing within days, perhaps hours, of his death. All my protests against this rapid disposal of her stuff was met with hostility by my family. At one point I said to my sister, “it seems like you’re trying to erase all traces of Mom’s existence”, and she replied coldly, “works for me”.
I recently learned that when my Father’s Mother, i.e. my paternal grandmother died, she had been living with my late aunt Bobbye Jo and her family. My Uncle JD told me that they threw away “garbage cans full” of old pictures. Apparently my late aunt was so self centered that it never occurred to her that any of her siblings might want those pictures. I have less than 10 pictures of my paternal grandparents, and none from her earlier life. I recently met a second cousin who had pictures of my Paternal Grandfather when he was a child and young man, but I have none of my Paternal Grandmother from when she was younger than her 60s or so.
It’s things like this that have my emotions stirring now as I sort through Mom’s stuff.
Still, this dresser has long been a memorial museum piece to my mother for almost 20 years and it’s time to sort out what is really worth keeping in her memory, and free it up for daily use again for Dad and myself, and I’m quite sure Dad will be happy about that.
So my baby kittah Apophis Maukat is becoming a cat. Yesterday afternoon after I just got home after a long day of work and I was at my desktop computer with all my critters greeting me, when I heard a high-pitched cry unlike anything I’ve ever heard before in my life. I looked over and I saw my baby kitten had something small in his mouth that was struggling. I thought at first it was a baby mouse because of it’s small size, but as I got closer, I saw it was a tiny hummingbird. Apophis ran out the back door and I caught him on the back porch as the tiny bird with iridencent green feathers was screaming. As I held Apophis by the back of his neck and started to reach for the bird in his jaws, the bird suddenly broke free and flew like a rocket across the back yard and out of sight leaving my tiny predator with a mouthfull of tiny feathers. I hope the little bird is going to recover, and perhaps be a bit more wary of cats in the future.
Good news on the Older Cat/Young Kitten introduction front: After several months of my older cat Anubis having a kitty fit over the new kitten Apophis, and refusing to come inside regularly, and me feeding him by putting his food on the back porch, new things have happened. Last night I had turned on the wireless motion sensor alarm I’ve put by the cat food on the back porch because I hadn’t seen older Anubis in several days. I had it turned off because baby Apophis had gotten to know when the alarm went off, older Anubis was on the back porch and he’d go out and chase his older stepbrother away, so I’d turned it off the past few weeks. The alarm went off and I looked out and indeed there was big white Anubis at the cat food munching away. Baby Apophis walked outside, but this time, the alarm kept going, meaning that Anubis was not running off. Apophis came back in and looked up at me, with big worried kitten eyes, meowed at me. Just as Anubis is one of the loudest and most talkative kittahs I’ve ever hand, Apophis has been of the most silent. Dad said “he’s telling that other cat is out there”.
This morning, I heard Anubis’s distinctive LOUD meow coming from the back yard and when I looked outside, I saw my two kittahs PLAYING together. This was a genuine, bilateral back-and-forth play, with baby Apophis leaping up in mock attack and older Anubis chasing the kitten around the yard playfully. (!!!=^_^=!!!) Anubis is only about 4 years old, so he’s not much beyond the kitten stage himself. Anubis still won’t come inside, and when he saw me, he ran off, but this is great news.
I suspect I’ll have to set up the “fishing line through the living room window screen to the back door handle” trick I did before to trap Anubis inside like I did a couple months ago in order to get him inside again. I may do that this weekend.
Major new development in the ongoing older cat/young new kitten introduction story … Older cat Anubis has been staying outside and having a fit over the new kitten Apophis. Anubis has been running whenever young Apophis, now about 6 months old, runs out after him and except for about a two week period a few months ago, has not been inside, and I’ve been putting food on the back porch for him because he won’t come inside anymore.
Tonight I was walking through the dining room and I heard older cat Anubis meowing loudly, as he is one of the loudest and most talkative cats I’ve ever had. As he’s done for awhile now, when I went out on the porch, Anubis ran out into the yard, and Apophis, having heard his older stepbrother, ran out after him. I don’t think Apophis is ever aggressive, just playful. This time however, rather than Anubis running off into the darkness, he stood on the patio, and little Apophis walked up near him. Anubis took a couple steps towards his younger stepbrother, and baby Apophis started licking Anubis’ face. (!!!)
This is a very good sign that perhaps they are starting to get along…
My Aunt and Uncle have had a growing cat colony on their land, about an acre North of Salinas, for several years now. My aunt has been feeding them for years. Several years ago, when it was only a few cats, I suggested that they should catch them and get them spade and neutered or they would have a problem with cat population exploded. My Uncle refused to do so because of the cost of neutering those few cats. Tonight my father told me that my Uncle, his younger brother, called animal control round up and take away about 30 cats, most of whom were so feral they had never been touched by a human. He decided he didn’t want to pay about $30 a month in cat food to keep them alive. Almost certainly they are now mostly, or even entirely, all dead. I am very upset with my uncle because his cheapness several years ago has lead directly to this tragedy.
So I was working in ceramics class at Hartnell College and at the table I was sitting at, there was a young man and a young woman talking. The YM was talking about someone he’d texted and complained that person he’d texted about a hour before had not replied yet. The YW agreed that was annoying and said “I hate people who lag”, meaning someone who does not respond to texts right away. They then went on a rant about how “nobody likes her” and as evidence cited “nobody has LIKEd” a picture she’d posted on Facebook.
As I was painting my clay, I reflected on how expectations of availability have changed. It used to be that you only expected to contact someone if you caught them at home in the early evening after school or work. Then answering machines came along and you expected a call back in a few hours. A similar situation came about with e-mail. Cell phones moved the expectation to immediate access, no matter what else you are doing or who you are talking to … (I’ve been in stores getting checked out when the clerk’s cell phone goes off, and I stand there several minutes while they take a PERSONAL call with a line of people waiting).
So it just sounds odd to me that to these two people, “lagging” in response to a random text get such a negative reaction. It just sounds petty…