Halloween XXIII: The Return Of Michael Myers’ Cousin’s Roomate’s Cat

…insert spooky piano music and meow here

I did not plan for this to go up on Halloween, as it is neither spooky or funny, but this is how things work out. I’ve been meaning to write about this for years.

The Final Goodbye

Let me preface this by saying that I do not at all believe in the supernatural, from the existence of ghosts to God. I don’t believe in any of it. Dead is dead.

That being said, I do understand I could be wrong and would be interested in any concrete scientific evidence to the contrary. So far, none exists.

What I do believe in, backed up by mountains of scientific evidence and personal experience, is that the human mind deals with strong emotions in endless ways.

The emotion I’m going to talk about is grief and how my mind deals with it.

And I’m specifically talking about grief after losing a non-human companion.

ROSCOE


In 2005, our first dog, Roscoe, died. He was old for a basset, nearly 16, and had health issues that only got worse in his last couple of years. His death was not unexpected, but still hit us very hard.

It was18 months before we felt ready for another dog, at which point we adopted Daisy Ann (November 2006). A month later, we adopted Winker Sue (December, 2006). They filled a huge hole in our hearts.

In that 18 months before we adopted Daisy & Winker, I thought about Roscoe often, but I never had a dream about him or really felt that final moment where you really let go. I just sort of rolled along. After we got The Girls, I thought about Roscoe somewhat less often. I was dealing with two rowdy dogs and life and such.

But in February of 2007, just before I was due to go to Dundracon, I was sitting in the living room late at night when it happened. I was very tired and had just looked at The Girls sleeping in front of the TV when I saw something out of the corner of my eye.

It was Roscoe. The front door was open a foot or so and he gave me a doggy smile and a little woof. Then I heard him say, “You’ll be okay now, boss. I’m outta here.”

Then he walked out the door, which shut behind him.

I jumped in my chair, no doubt coming fully awake. Everything was totally normal. The Girls were still sleeping, the tv was still on the Food Network and the house was otherwise quiet. At that point, I felt tears running down my face and said “Goodbye, Roscoe”.

From that point on I felt a weight lifted from me. I still thought of the old boy, but I wasn’t sad. Even on the first anniversary of his death, which is always terrible, be the deceased human or NHT, was not as sad as I expected.

DAISY ANN


Fast forward a bit less than two years and we lost Daisy Ann to cancer. She was just over 6 years old and Grace, Winker and I missed her. I had been taking nightly long walks, sometimes up to 5 miles, with Daisy and I called her My Old Walking Partner. After she died in early January, 2009, I stopped taking nightly walks. My heart was not in it and Winker was not inclined toward long walks.

But after about 3 months, I decided to start taking walks again. For a couple of weeks, I avoided the streets that Daisy and I walked, but one night I set off on our favorite walk, just to see how I’d handle it.

I got about 4 blocks from home, at the intersection where we usually paused to decide which route to take, when I got the very distinct feeling that a dog was beside me. I looked down and just for a fraction of a second, saw a black & white blur turn down one street. I did not hear a voice, but I got the overwhelming feeling that I was supposed to keep walking while Daisy went off on another route.

I walked for well over an hour non-stop, crying for the first few minutes. After that night, I felt okay about taking walks in that area.

WINKER

Winker was born with a pretty bad heart murmur and when we adopted her at age 2+, the vets from UC Davis told us she would never live the average 10-12 years that bassets usually do. We accepted that and loved her very much. She was our little one eyed sweetie.

In 2011, she nearly died from congestive heart failure, but with medication and love, she pulled through. However, the vet told me that her time was limited, with maybe one more year. As it turned out, she died just a few days over a year later, going downhill rapidly over about 3 days.

When Winker died in February of 2012, we had had Lucy for almost 3 years and Sasha for 2 months. That and knowing that Winker was on borrowed time tended to lessen the hurt. Having been through what I now called “The Final Goodbye” twice, I waited for Winker to do hers.

And I waited. And waited some more.

It was 6 months later, in August, that it happened. It was a Saturday morning and I was sleeping in. Grace was out on some errand and Sasha & Lucy were asleep in the living room. Then I felt a dog lick my hand (which was hanging off the edge of the bed) and I heard Winker’s distinctive whine. I was waking up when I heard her happy bark. Of course, she was not there, but I still cried a bit.

LUCY LOUISE

Lucy was a mental mess when we got her. I have written about that before, so I won’t go into it here, but by the time she died from lymphoma, in August of 2013, she was much better. She had issues with most other dogs, but she loved Grace and I like crazy.

We had about 4 months to come to terms with her impending death, but of course, it is never easy. The fact that we adopted Daisy Mae just a few days after Lucy died did a huge amount toward healing us.

About two weeks after she died, I saw a dog that looked very much like Lucy at the dog park. For a variety of reasons, I had taken Sasha and Daisy there early in the morning and for even more reasons, I was about 3 days into some seriously shitty sleeping at night. I was pretty tired and a bit punchy and I still missed Lucy.

Turns out, that was the perfect formula for that dog to sort of morph into Lucy, but a happy and unafraid Lucy. She was running and barking having a great time. It lasted maybe 30 seconds and then I blinked and that dog was not Lucy, but I felt pretty happy. Sad, too, and still punchy, but happy. I took The Girls home and had a 5 hour nap.

And now we are on a path toward Silky dying. We have no real time frame, but if she is still here at Christmas, I’ll be surprised. Will Silky have a final goodbye for me? By now, I’m pretty certain of it. My mind will find some way to have one last moment with her, one bit of strong self-healing. It will let me know that it’s time to move on.

EDIT FROM 12/6/18: Silky died November 20, 2018. As of this writing, she has not said her final goodbye.

Advertisements

Gandalf Picard VS The Robotic Spice Rebels Of Narnia

…if I can make just one fanboy weep, my job is done

The Doclopedia #1,408

Capes & Cloaks: Cape Fear

Fear is a very powerful emotion, as and soldier or adventurer can tell you. Fear can make you run farther and faster than ever you thought possible, or it can make you leap into danger with deadly intent.

Today, students, we will discuss a cape of terrible power, one that you have probably all heard tales about as children. Today we discuss Cape Fear.

Quiet down! QUIET DOWN! The cape is no danger to us today. As you can plainly see, it is fully enclosed in a case made of Professor Ranik al Haraba’s most wonderful magic proof glass. I give you my word that there will be no leakage today. Unless, of course, some of you wet yourself when I revealed the cape.

Let’s take a look at it here. A rather plain affair made of gray and white wool in a sort of hounds tooth pattern. It attaches below the neck with a short chain and a clasp. I should think it would come down to about the waist on a 6 foot tall person. In all ways it appears totally normal.

But we know differently, don’t we? This cape is over 300 years old and has been worn by at least 10 insane killers that we know of. The Falburgh Ripper, Lady Vezeel, The Gray Headsman, Yogarl of the Swamp Clan, Sir Ansent Bartok…the list goes on and on. Each of them wore the cloak and were driven mad by the need to incite fear and terror. They tortured and dismembered and even cannibalized their victims before finally being brought to justice.

Yes, yes, Miss Broadfoot, how indeed did the cape remain undetected for so long? Was it ineptitude by the authorities? No, although they were more than a little inept at times. Perhaps the crazed killers had an accomplice that spirited the cape away after the killer’s death? None have ever been found.

No, the simple answer it that the cape shuts off it’s curse for a time and is tossed away or put in a pile with the killers other clothes, for later burning. This buys the cape enough time to entice somebody to take it away from any danger of being buried or destroyed. Over a period of a day or two, it causes itself to become clean and new looking. After that, it might be worn by several people, until the day comes when it meets just the right person. Then it turns the curse back on and begins driving them mad.

Take a good long look at Cape Fear, students. In a few days, it will be transported to a secluded locale to be burned into nothingness by magical fire. After that, it will haunt our world no longer.

Was the above bit of writing interesting to you? Well then, consider become a Patron of this blog! Besides being one of the cool kids and getting to read fun stuff, you get sweet compiled Doclopedia posts in the popular PDF format, plus other exclusive stuff, like five versions of the same tavern. And did we mention the upcoming weekly podcast? The one you, as a Patron will get to hear a week before the common folk? You can get in on this for as little as one dollar a month, so click the link and check it out.

Note: Some PDFs available only at the $3.00 level.

Support this blog on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/DocCross

New Board Games For Cats

…they mostly lay on them and play with the pieces

 

The Doclopedia #1,407

Capes & Cloaks: Cloak Of Shadows

Good morning, students! As promised, this week we shall discuss various capes and cloaks, each imbued with strange powers. Now do quiet down so we may get started.

Now, you see before you a very well tailored cloak. It is meant to attach to a shirt or jacket at a point just a couple of inches below the collarbones. The collar of the cloak is quite high, coming up about halfway on one’s ears. The interior is red and the exterior is black. It is made from a light, yet very durable fabric. Our best estimate is that it was made for a person standing at least 6 foot 2 inches tall.

So, a very fine looking cloak, but what of it’s special powers? Ah, well, those are interesting indeed. To begin with, the wearer of the cloak can become extremely hard to see in any sort of darkness or deep shadow. Indeed, after wearing it for a while, one can even cause the minds of those around you to become cloudy, leading to them not being able to see you at all. Most interesting, I think you’ll agree.

Perhaps an even greater power, though one that is a two edged sword, is the ability to know what evil lies in the human or humanoid heart. You know who has evil tendencies just by looking at them. You also know who will act on this evil and who will not act…yet. Trust me when I tell you finding out that an old friend is some sort of evil bastard is not something you will enjoy. This is only made worse by the cloak’s final power.

It wants you to fight evil.

And when I say “fight evil”, I mean going after criminals and evildoers and stopping them in any way necessary, including killing them. It is not an urge that is easily resisted, which is why wearing the cloak is no longer allowed.

Now, off you go to your next class!

The Super Duper Scare Your Face Off, But Also Wildly Funny, Story Of Mostly Purple Patty And The Haunted Outhouse

…co-starring her country cousin, Otis Goobersnock

 

Confessions Of A Time Traveler

Killing Hitler: Let Me Count The Ways

Pretty much everyone in my immediate family and a couple of my friends has gone back in time and killed Hitler. Of course, that doesn’t change our history, but it does spin off new timelines where the insane son of a bitch did die. It’s actually more fun than most people think.

Among us Hitler killers, I have done it the most. Silky, who you will remember actually fought the Nazis in her first life, comes in second. We are both into the triple digits. Grace only killed him once, but it was via a transformation hex that turned him into a rat, who, seconds later was crushed under Hermann Goering’s boot. Actually, Grace smoked him, too, but we are only counting Hitler kills here.

Before I go and further, let’s be clear that I’m only counting the times I have ended Adolf Hitler’s life, I’m not counting the times I had him get some good breaks as a kid or teen, got him into art school overseas, got him seriously laid for his first time ever by a Jewish girl, got him laid for the first time by a Jewish boy, scared him into the priesthood by posing as Satan himself or just plain neuralized him into being something other that an antisemitic nutcase. Nope, this is all about bringing his miserable life to an end.

So, I have killed Hitler by…

Rifle shot to the head, long range: 9 times
Rifle shot to the head, medium range: 7 times

Pistol to the head, point blank: 10 times
Pistol, two to the back of the head on a lonely road: 4 times
Shotgun blast, close range: 5 times
Machine gun: 8 times
Arrow, poisoned: 6 times

Blown to smithereens by explosives: 23 times
Dropped conventional bomb on him: 9 times
Nuked him during one of his rallies: 1 time

Poison: 11 times

Disintegrated him: 7 times

Decapitated with a sword: 3 times

Well placed dagger thrust: 15 times
Tossed him off a cliff: 4 times
Electrocution: 5 times
Gassed him in his own gas chambers: 12 times
Tossed him to a crowd of angry Jews: 6 times

Garroted him: 4 times
Ran him down with one of those sweet German touring cars: 4 times
Exposed him to high level radiation: 3 times
Tricked him into killing himself: 3 times
Sicced velociraptors on him (also took out 7 high ranking officers): 1 time
Plane crash: 3 times

Hung him: 4 times
Scared him to death using holograms: 2 times

Automobile accident: 5 times

Steamroller (not as funny as you’d think): 3 times
Strapped to a V-2 rocket: 1 time
Liquid nitrogen dip: 1 time

Drug overdose (surprisingly easy): 7 times

So, 185 times. Truth to tell, I’m kind of tired of killing Hitler. Of course, there is still, Stalin, the various Kims ruling the DPRK, Pol Pot, pretty much every tinpot dictator, the founders of the Ku Klux Klan, the founders of several religions, tons of gangsters and, of course, plenty of shitty politicians throughout US history.

I’m sure the folks in all those better new timelines would thank me, if they knew.