Working In A Troll Mine

…going down down down

WOOHOO! The Doclopedia is back! The theme for the next few entries is “Strange Pet Ailments”.

The Doclopedia #1,205

Strange Pet Ailments: Feline Transparency Syndrome

Cat owners everywhere are worried about this new ailment that slowly renders the animal nearly invisible. Since cats are often underfoot and move pretty much silently, it’s easy to see how being invisible might enhance the chances of tripping and injury. There is also the shock that comes when a cay you didn’t see leaps onto your lap or otherwise interacts with you. And, of course, transparent cats are much harder to find if the get loose.

Little is known about Feline Transparency Syndrome, but it is believed to be linked to a double recessive gene. No cure is imminent, so most vets suggest putting a sweater on your transparent cat, since collars don’t seem to be enough to alets you to their presence. Painting the cat is, of course, right out.

Please note that FTS only affects cats over the age of 1 year and under the age of 10.

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Alien Goldfish Hunted My Springboks

…thank goodness they could only do it for a few seconds at a time.

The Doclopedia #1,197

Critter Avengers Choice: Daisy: The Adventures Of Doc Savage

On Earth 3B, this animated series (which alternates with “The Shadow” every 6 episodes) has been running for 15 years and gets high ratings. The visual style is very like the “Batman: The Animated Series” of our world, but more colorful. The voice acting is great, although none of the actors are known on our world.

About half of the stories told so far (of the 18 total 90 minute episodes per season) have been taken from the original Doc Savage stories (of which that world had 260) with the rest being completely new. The new stories have told about Doc or a member of the Fantastic Five as young folks, Doc & Co. in the 1950’s & 60’s and even a few with Doc in famous fictional lands (Pellucidar, Atlantis, Gotham City).

There have been episodes co-starring The Shadow, Batman, Sherlock Holmes, The Phantom and even a teenage James Bond. The 15th anniversary episode even featured a guy who looked and sounded a whole lot like the 16th Doctor, although they never called him that.

I’m pretty sure all of you geeks out there would love this show.

(Note: On Earth 3B, they are up to the 18th Doctor on Doctor Who)

The Doclopedia #1,198

Critter Avengers Choice: Jasmine: Lagos Feline Resort, Lagos, Portugal

This is where my husband and I spent our honeymoon. It’s located on CatEarth 4C, where humans still worship cats as deities in the year 1962. Being as we are both Dwarf Portuguese Jungle Cats, going to Portugal seemed the right thing to do.

The resort is all that a cat could ask for, once you finally leave your room:) There are fine beaches, gourmet food (the Clams & Mice was to die for!), excellent drinks and all sorts of things to do. The human staff is top notch and they wait on you paw & paw. And did I mention that the litter boxes use a wonderfully scented litter?

We were there for a week, then spent another week just touring the country. I absolutely recommend this resort to any cats that can get there.

My Life Among The Wild Writers

…which is actually most of them.

 

Below, Sasha’s latest rant.

Sasha Explains It All

Why You Can Never Really Talk To Your Dog

I know, I know. The first thing you humans say to that is “well, they don’t understand <insert your local language here> anyway”. Typical human arrogance. Look, dogs have been hooked up with humans for maybe 30,000 years and for sure for 25,000 years. We learned your languages as they developed, folks. When we met you, your vocabulary was maybe 300 words. Not real hard to master, ya know?

Now, to be fair, 99% of dogs do not have enormous vocabularies, but we all understand your languages at at least the conversational level. Of course, most dogs only understand the human languages they were raised with, but we understand them. And we pick up new languages pretty fast. Survival skill, don’t ya know.

The above also applies to cats, pigs (have I mentioned how smart pigs are?), apes and several other species that are either in contact with humans a lot or related to you. None of them are quite as good at understanding humans as dogs, but they DO understand you.

So, back to why you and your dog can never really understand one another. It’s pretty simple, really: humans lack tails, scent glands and really moveable ears.

Now, you lot have figured out that tail/ear positions indicate some general emotional stuff, but you have only scratched the surface and you can’t differentiate smells worth a damn, if at all. Let me set you straight.

Suppose I meet my friend Moose, a 4 year old male basset hound. You see Moose and I wagging our tails, ears perked up as much as we can perk up our floppy ears and we are sniffing each others butts. You figure that are greeting each other in a friendly manner. You are right, but only partly.

What you don’t know or notice is that Moose is wagging his tail in a clockwise rotation. He is also emitting a very slight fear odor and his ears go back a couple of times, just for a second. This means that he is glad to see me, but he is a bit nervous about something. We exchange woofs and a sub-vocalization or two and I learn that he is going to the vet later and is worried. Given that the vet once removed his testicles, it’s easy to understand his nervousness. This is very common among most male dogs & cats.

So now, I give him a few reassuring woofs and hold my tail a bit lower, wagging slower. My ears are relaxed and I emit a bit of female scent. You know what I’m talking about. Just a whiff that says “You’re gonna be ok, you hot hunk of dog.” His tail wags faster and then we are on our way with our humans.

Two humans meet like that and all you’ve got is facial expressions, hand moves and body stance and emotional inflections in your voice. We dogs have all of that (except hand movements), plus the tails, ears & scent. Hell, sometimes we say things just with scent alone, which is why we mark territories and sniff each others marks.

But wait, you say, what about dogs & cats who lose their tails or have them docked way short or were born without them? Or have tiny ears or have lost an ear? Well, truth is, those critters speak to us the way a person with a speech impediment or maybe a mental problem speaks to you. We understand them, but it’s a bit more difficult and requires some patience. While I’m on the subject: STOP DOCKING EARS & TAILS, YOU FUCKING HAIRLESS APES!

Sorry for the outburst, but it’s a touchy subject.


Of course, there are also certain concepts that all species have that are unique to that species. Dogs have things like
griff and warrooo, which I can’t even begin to explain to humans, although oddly, my human father has a fair understanding of griff. But then, he’s special. Cats have things like mrrowk and hssht going on and they won’t even try to explain them to non-cats. Among you humans, the concept of religious and political fervor are a couple of the many emotional states we animals can never hope to understand.

So there you have it. We can understand each other, but not completely. I’m not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing or just a thing. Regardless, we all seem to deal with it.

Until my next rant,

Sasha Jane Cross

The Sausage Fairies Come Out At Night

…which is good, because they’re kinda strange

 

Dog Con 7

 

Day 14, Con Day 1: In which we review the wedding & party, everybody just plays the hell out of games, then parties like it’s 1889

8:30 pm

The wedding went off perfectly, with Morris the Cat officiating. For cats, having Morris do the duty was like Jesus marrying two humans. When he walked out, every cat and dog in the placed gasped.

(Jazz: It was an incredible surprise and an honor.)

(Flash: He was great! A god among cats!)
(Leon: I got a tear in my eye when I saw him.)

(Roxy: I wept like a kitten.)

There were hundreds of sentients at the wedding and the whole town of Critter City watched on big screens all over town.

(Jazz: The Girls were beautiful in their peach colored collars, ribbons and the diamond earrings.)
(Flash: And Lulu, my Best Bitch, was snazzy in her new tuxedo paint job.)

Once the wedding was over, there were a zillion pictures and then the crazy big buffet dinner. After that were toasts and speeches. Sasha went completely sappy when she gave hers.

(Jazz: It was so sweet! She was crying and telling Flash what a great brother he was and how she loved him and was proud of him. He cried, too.)

(Flash: It was allergies.)

(Leon: Dude, you were sobbing like a baby! You used a whole box of tissue.)

Once all that was done, it was time to party! We had at least 500 sentients there. Rather than give a blow by blow, I figure I’ll just let the critters comment on stuff.

(Sasha: It was very sweet watching Flash & Jazz dance while Frank Sinatra sang to them.)

(Daisy: OMG! I got to meet Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock and Dr. McCoy and Mr. Sulu and Lt. Uhura and…)

(Silky: I loved seeing Bob Hope and Errol Flynn and John Wayne.)

(Lulu: I got to meet K-9. He’s pretty smart, but his speech software blows.)

(Daisy: …and ALL the Doctors and Captain Picard and Tony Stark and Lt. Commander Data and four James Bonds and some Klingons and…)

(Leon: You know, horses are pretty nice folks. I hung out with a few of them.)

(Roxy: The otters were a hoot. Who knew they could play jazz?)

(Sadie: Dean Martin and Johnny Carson were funny.)

(Jazz: Dad does a pretty good Louis Prima impression. Even Louis was impressed.)

(Sasha: You should have been there later on when he did his Tom Waits impression and sang “Open Invitation To The Blues”)

(Flash: Yeah, well, after Jazz sang “Why Don’t You Do Right” in the Jessica Rabbit style to me, it was honeymoon time.)

(Daisy: …and hobbits and Gandalf and HARRY GODDAMN POTTER and Hermione and Ron and Dobby and Dr. Banner and Mrs. Peel and Mr. Steed and…)

(Sadie: It was pretty cool how, after Flash & Jazz left, everything changed from the Sands Hotel in Vegas, 1962 to the Fillmore West, San Francisco, 1969)

(Roxy: Kind of mixed with a rave and a battle of the bands. It was VERY cool how those “Matrix Bracelets” let us learn how to play any instrument AND know the words to any song.)

(Daisy: …and Mal Reynolds and Clark Savage Jr. and Monk Mayfair and Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle and Captain Jack Harkness and…)

(Sasha: It was pretty cool watching Mom, in those leather pants & jacket, sing “I Love Rock & Roll”, then see Dad & Uncle Spike do “Layla”. They were tearin’ it up!)

(Sadie: Lots of people went off to those holosuites. What was up with that?)

(Daisy: …and Groot and Rocket and Steve Rogers and Miss Romanov and Dr. Crusher and Jadzia Dax and Sarah Jane Smith and…)

Lulu: Yeah, it was a night to remember all right.)

After the party was over, we left and were back on the bus just 5 minutes after we left, but dog tired, so we all hit the sack for a good 10 hour nap. (Note: between the wedding, dinner and party, we were in folded time for 12 hours)

The Rejuvenox wore off while we were asleep, so we all woke up in our old physical forms. Better than being dead, I guess.

(Silky: Goodbye, taut tummy and firm boobs!)

Our first convention day started with a bang up breakfast at Chez Mom’s and then we all scattered to thr four winds for gaming. It broke down kind of like this…

The critters (accompanied by Arcadia) went off to play in some LARPs, with the old hands showing the newbies the ropes.

(Daisy: Wow! That Dungeons & Dogs LARP was hella fun!)

(Silky: It sure was! I got to play a fighter and I kicked ass!)

(Jazz: We cats played in the Cats & Caverns adventure. I was a mage and Roxy was a thief.)

(Roxy: We killed a Greater Mummy!)

Grace & Mary & Caroline & Ginie went into the Hall O’ Boardgames and were there most of the day.

Miranda and Lauren mostly played video games.

Spike, Brian, Avis and I did a tour of the Dealer’s room and then played in several RPG sessions, including the new D&D, Traveller and Over The Edge.

For dinner, we all went to Big Slabs O’ Meat for lots ODF, well, meat and other, lesser foodstuffs. Filled up from that, we waddled back to our rooms to get ready for the Con Party.

(Sasha: I LOVE that place! I almost overdosed on meat.)

Now, normally, this big shindig is held on Wednesday night, but this year they moved it to Thursday night because half the con was at the wedding party. Very cool of them to do it.

The theme for this year’s party is “Steampunk Villainy” so we will all be going as various Evil Geniuses, Masterminds, Mad Scientists and Vile Criminals. They have three bands playing, including Abney Park. Should be a fun Victorian time.

The critters and Lauren and Arcadia will all be here in our room watching old “Aircat” and “Bark Savage” serials. There will be a mountain of snacks.

(Leon: AIRCAT! Fuck yeah!)

More blogstuff tomorrow.

Sassy Wombats Ridiculed My Partridges

…it was terrible to hear

 

The Doclopedia #1,143

Bad Dogs: Yin Yin

Among the affluent young capitalist of Shanghai, owning a purebred dog is a status symbol. Owning a unique purebred dog puts you at the top of the heap. The owners of Yin Yin have such a dog, since he is a pure white miniature long haired dachshund with blue eyes. The three year old is the apple of their eye and leads a pampered life. Too bad that he is also evil to the core.

There is a reason why Yin Yin looks so different: he’s not from our world. He was actually born on an Earth where psychic powers are very common. Humans, dogs, cats and a few other species have them and, for the most part, use them for good. But when a certain weenie dog began using his mind control powers for evil, the Grand Council banished him to another reality. Our reality.

Yin Yin controls the minds of several hundred rich and powerful people, both in Shanghai and in other parts of China. Having no real need for money, the cunning canine is instead setting China up for violent revolution and eventual collapse. After that, he intends to do the same to the USA and all of the other countries of the world. Very few humans and dogs can resist his mental powers.

Yin Yin’s big weakness is cats, who are utterly unaffected by his attempts to control their minds. Now, if they only cared about the collapse of civilization, we might have a chance.

Doc Tempest VS The Princess Of Death

…from the December, 1955 issue

 

The Doclopedia #1,110

The Alphabet: T is for…

 

Trout Pudding…

…(with or without herring sauce) has been a very popular dessert dish on CatEarth for over 300 years. Basically a vanilla pudding with finely chopped raw trout and a mix of small rodent parts, most humans would find it revolting, but most dogs would scarf it right down.

There are countless variations of Trout Pudding, with most families changing the recipe as they see fit. One of the more popular variations adds very tiny live frogs. Another calls for various insects to be sprinkled on top just before serving.

The Doclopedia #1,111

The Alphabet: U is for…

Uxonger & Sons…

…are the premiere booksellers of Adelaide, Australia. Their store is huge, roughly the size of an American Wal Mart, and packed with books, magazines, maps, photographs, pamphlets, comic books and newspapers. In addition to the main store, they also maintain two warehouses a few miles away. These are just as packed as the store is.

Alfred Uxonger prides himself on the fact that not only does his store have rare books found nowhere else, but everything in the store is listed by subject to a minute degree of detail. If you need a book on albino Red Tailed Hawks found in the Fresno, California, area between the years 1923-1933, it will be prominently listed on the shelf. Fortunately, Mr. Uxonger has a very up to date listing of every book in the story, cross referenced in about 100 ways or more. Naturally, book buyers are crazy about this.

Once in a while, you can find a book, etc, that does not come from the same reality that Uxonger & Sons inhabits. These books can range from amusing (Jeeves and the Batman) to very strange (An Anatomists Illustrated Book Of Trolls) to world changing (Do It Yourself Fusion Power). Bibliophiles often spend weeks searching for one of these strange texts.

Uxonger & Sons are open from 8:00 am until 10:00 pm Sunday through Saturday and from 8:00 am until midnight Friday & Saturday.

Janie Got A Gnu

…song title if Aerosmith were dyslexic

The Doclopedia #904

Great Presents/Terrible Presents: …On A Zombie Apocalypse World

Great Present: A solar rechargeable pulse laser rifle with head targeting technology

Terrible Present: Eau De Brains perfume

The Doclopedia #905

Great Presents/Terrible Presents: …On A Dog World

Great Present: BACON! Pretty much anything made out of or with BACON!

Terrible Present: A gift card for a free spaying or neutering

The Doclopedia #906

Great Presents/Terrible Presents: …On A Fantasy World

Great Present: The Greatsword of Ultimate Dragon Slaying

Terrible Present: The Greatsword of Toenail Trimming

The Doclopedia #907

Great Presents/Terrible Presents: …On A Cat World

Great Present: Any present the cat tells you they want

Terrible Present: Any other type of present