Start: [Redacted], New Orleans, Louisiana.
End: Parked outside the New Orleans African American Museum, Governor Nicholl’s Street, New Orleans, Louisiana
- All the thoughts that bubbled up as part of watching the comedy special Nanette.
- This dialog:
- Me: “I’m doing a couples costume with my dog: I’m Lucius Malfoy and she’s Dobby the House Elf.”
- [Redacted] (Former college classmate): “That sounds exploitative.”
- Me: “Yeah, I’ll have to watch out for the Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare.”
- Vaguely disappointing [redacted].
- A bit of [redacted] work.
- Didn’t love [redacted]. Enjoyed talking [redacted] though.
- Pizza & fettuccine in New Orleans again.
- Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey.
- Date with [redacted].
- My death ceremony.
- Getting out of New Orleans.
Start: [Redacted]’s house, South Austin, TX
End: [Redacted]’s [redacted], [redacted], Austin TX.
- Sous vided two steaks for [redacted] and myself; seared it at the end. Was DELISH.
- “I can’t even spell API.” – Me, making a joke after someone asks if I can help them get an API key.
- “Your bathroom does a great job of making people uncomfortable while they pee.” -Me, to [redacted].
- While scritching & belly-rubbing Simba ([redacted]’s cat) and sitting between him & Smidge, the feeling that I’m precisely where I’m supposed to be.
- [Redacted] with [redacted]. [Redacted] fun. She [redacted]. Feels like I won.
- [Redacted]. I don’t mind, hey 🙂
- Worked on [redacted] for 2+ hours. Tried to get in touch with [redacted], presumably to discuss [redacted].
- Decided my strategy in that conversation:
- 1. [Redacted]. Ask if we can re-approach [redacted] in the next quarter [redacted].
- 2. [Redacted] in a graduated fashion. [Redacted].
- 3. [Redacted]
- Cuddled with [redacted]. It gave me the feels.
- Probably the first time someone’s asked me. “Can I kiss you?”. It was ADORABLE. Really cute. Loved it.
- Kissed [redacted] back, our second time. Felt too much, like [redacted] felt uncomfortable being not-in-control. If we kiss again, I’ll make sure [redacted] feels safe.
- Yard sale tomorrow? I LOVE yard sales!
Start: Guest Room in [redacted]’s house, Austin, TX
End: [Redacted]’s house, South Austin, TX
- Sous vided a steak for [redacted] and myself; seared it at the end. Was TO DIE FOR.
- “Is the opposite of ‘pee-shy’ ‘pee-proud’? ‘Cause I’m pee-proud.” -Me
- It’s not how fast you move; it’s hitting all the right steps. Some steps take time. Others can zoom.
- I don’t want to [redacted]. That would be complex. Complex is bad.
- [Redacted] with [redacted]. Very comfortable very fast. [Redacted].
- [Redacted] made a funny face. I teased her [redacted].
- Completed much work, including over an hour for [redacted].
- Got lost on a walk with Smidge. If you plan to turn right at each chance you get, you can retrace by making each left. This only works if you don’t find a cool path that you decide to take, because, “Look! A cool path!”
- Called [redacted] via Apple Watch, for directions when lost. Grateful he helped. He’s a good friend.
- Chatted with [redacted] about his life & his work. Suggested he get a sleep doc, do a sleep study, reshape his life.
- Texted [redacted] that I loved our chat last week. That was delightful. She called back, too.
- Texted [redacted] that I wasn’t happy [redacted]. Just not the relationship I want to have. She said, “all good” and “no skin off my back” (paraphrased). “Still,” I said, “Wanted you to know.”
- Wrote a very good section for my [redacted] story. Very, very good. About [redacted].
- Cleared out my notebook from Myschevia. Notes moved, friends made!
- [Redacted] tomorrow with [redacted]?!?!?!
Start: Outside the Town Square, Downtown Hughes Springs, TX
End: Outside E Bar Tex-Mex Restaurant, Dallas, TX
- Fajita Nachos at E Bar Tex-Mex Restaurant, Dallas, TX
- Someone with no respect for truth will always be lonely, for they live in a world of one.
- Walked Smidge through downtown Hughes Springs. She pooped a massive amount today.
- Picked up a letter from [redacted]. I love letters, especially from [redacted]. I’m elated to read & reply.
- In the McDonald’s Parking Lot (while I squatted their WiFi), someone knocked on my van. I assumed it was the McDonald’s manager, telling me to move along. While it was the manager, they were actually knocking to inform me my lights were on.
- Worked on [redacted] for ~three hours. Good work, [redacted].
- Cleared email inbox entirely. (From 75+ emails to 0.)
- Dinner with [redacted] from the Myschevia festival. Surprised [redacted], as I’d been thinking about it all day.
- Texas State Fair tomorrow?!?!?! Drive to Austin?!?! Only time will tell!
Start: Myschevia Festival, Armadillo Acres, Hughes Springs, TX.
End: Outside the Town Square, Downtown Hughes Springs, TX
- Drove from Hughes Springs to Gilmer to retrieve Smidge.
- Smidge did well at the sitter. No accidents, no fights. Nothing to report. Great.
- Drove back to Hughes Springs so I can pick up my letter from [redacted] when the post office opens tomorrow.
- Met all sorts of great people during my last ranger shift at the burn, during teardown/exodus.
- Helped the Fairy Tale camp remove their tent stakes.
- Hugged many people.
- Discussed fireworks with [redacted], the firework designer at Myschevia; he invited me to help design them next year. (He designed the greatest fireworks show I’ve ever seen, even better than the 6 years I’ve seen them at Burning Man).
- Received a new art to hang on my wall.
- The North Texas Regional Burn’s walkie talkies are crap. They still run a very well-organized burn.
- “In a culture so steeped in toxic masculinity, any emotional expression must come out through machismo.” -A Guy at the Burn, on why the North Texas Regional Burn is so Punk Rock.
Next stop: Austin. (Tomorrow?)
- The poly pod I met last night wants me to visit them.
- They have “three dogs and a driveway.” I want to [redacted].
- [Redacted], the dude with the [redacted] tattoos invited me to [redacted].
“Little boy or little girl?” yelled the toothless man from his garage across the street.
“She’s a little girl,” I hollered back. It’s 9:30am on a Thursday as I walk Smidge, my 5lb chihuahua.
“Well, I got a little boy about the same size. Does she wanna be a momma?”
“I don’t think she can.”
“Well, thought I might give it a try.”
My thoughts, in retrospect:
In this corner, at five-pound-four and thirty inches long, she’s the fiercest chihuahua you’ve ever met. She defends her food with the courage of a Rottweiler. She’s a fierce mama bear with six gnawed nipples to prove it. She marks giants’ territory as her own and likes her scritches… ruff.
Ladies and Gentlemen…
The one and only…
Want more Smidge? Comment with a request.
My dog peed on my bed. Twice. Once was after our first vet visit. I didn’t immediately take her to pee. That’s obviously stressful for a dog. I take the blame. The second was tonight, after I returned from a therapy appointment. She waited to pee until I returned. Good doggy. I drove to Walgreens to buy nailclippers, before finding us a parking spot and carrying her to my bed. That’s when she peed.
Did she whimper at me just after I parked? Did she struggle when I carried her to the bed? Was she indicating her pee-ful-ness? In short, is it my fault?
It must be. Or, at least, my responsibility. When did she last pee? Around 7pm. It’s now 11. Is that too long? How long between pees? How does dog pee work? Halp me google: HOW WORK DOG PEE?
We haven’t established pee-based communication. I don’t have a solid read on her piddle-timing. I lack a feel for her whimpers.
Experts say to avoid punishing dogs. Reward desirable behaviors; punishments don’t help. I shall implement this. It’s nice to know the ethics and psychology align.
I would more effectively learn to take her outside if she rewarded me when I succeeded–via a treat of some kind, say–instead of punishing me–via bed pees–when I don’t.
(Post-script addendum: It’s now nearly 1am. I’m so glad to have a cuddlebuddy. All is forgiven. We’ll do better next time.)