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november 11, 1998 Darnit, I had this whole thing done and I'm on the phone with my mom and I went to upload it and I hadn't saved it. She's really gabby this morning.

Where do I start? Okay, Halloween is officially over. The decorations are down, packed away and stored.

Brian was in a much better mood Sunday than he had been. Not nearly so crabby.

Gosh, I'm not in the mood to write this. The first one I did was great. Well, maybe starting it will help. *sigh*

Sunday, I was laying on the floor being headbutted by Red and DeeJay came up. I was afraid that DeeJay was going to smack Red, but they ended up headbutting. Then Red, a first, started to groom DeeJay between the ears. I watched in wonder. Another breakthrough.

Monday, I found a couple of places for my Paint Shop Pro 5 program that had tips. Since I downloaded this program, I didn't receive any documentation with it and there doesn't seem to be a *read me* file or a manual included, but there is online help. Well, I usually print out the manuals and put them in a notebook so I can refer to them as I experiment. I was having so much fun, I just lost track of time. There are tubes (hard to explain), layers (even harder) and I found that many of the functions do more than I thought they did. I didn't make any new wonderful graphics, I was so overwhelmed with what I was doing. Brian left after one in the afternoon to go to the job in Phoenix, not coming home til Friday or Saturday. When I finally looked up, it was dark outside and time to get the cats in. I had been so busy searching the web for more tube files and free plugin filters. I found some with snowflakes and Christmas trees and Christmas lights!! I can hardly wait to get started on some new postcards.

Thanks Grace and Roberta for letting me know to add the link on the diary index to this page. I did it Sunday after I got email from Roberta. I just was reading the guestbook entries for the webcam and found a similar message from Grace dated yesterday. So, I just checked it, duh, I never uploaded it. Guess I got sidetracked. It's up now. LOL!!

Anyway, I was up late Monday night, playing and waiting for hubby to call. At 12:45, I went to bed. Yesterday, I decided to do a little housecleaning. I vacuumed, dusted, and washed the throw rugs in the tv room. Then I came back to the office, got into a semi-heated debate about declawing (someone's vet told her that there was no amputation involved - she called him and he told her that 'it was a matter of opinion if it was bone that was amputated or not, depended on the *spin* the person talking about put on it - besides', he told her, 'spay neuter didn't have any health benefits for the cat and was also surgery' - a vet saying that spaying or neutering doesn't have any health benefits?? Excuse me?? I'd find a new vet asap. I bet this guy lives in a real nice house - and then later on some other pro-declawer said that cats that lived in multi cat homes should all be declawed because they will injure each other!!! Oh, my!! Do people really believe this stuff??!!! Those poor cats!!), played with my graphics some more, to see if I could still do it (short term memory problems LOL!!), trimmed two big mats off of Maggie's tail (one was nasty) and started looking through pictures I had gotten developed last week to post and make into postcards. Around 8:30 last night, the phone rings. I knew it was Brian and answered it. Asked how the job went and he said well, could you unlock the door? I'll be home in about 15 seconds. WHAT??!! He said he would tell me about it when he got home. (Thank goodness I had cleaned the house.) I went out to meet him and sure enough, here comes the work truck up the street. Brian got out and took all of his stuff out and came inside. He came home because the job wasn't ready. Before he left Monday, he called to make sure that it was and there wasn't a darn thing he could do once he got there. He spoke to some of the workers on the job and told them what needed to be done. The only thing that *had* been done was a sheet of metal put someplace, but it wasn't what was needed for what Brian needed to do (he's putting in a *greenhouse* type room) and had to be redone with the proper materials, which have to be ordered. While talking to the workers, the discussion turned to the way they were getting paid. It turns out that the job was put out to bid. Well, Brian never bid it, he told the owner time and material, and Brian's reputation preceded him, the homeowner never said a word. Then the worker told Brian that the homeowner is worth about six hundred million dollars. Six. Hundred. Million. Dollars. When Brian told me that I kind of giggled and shook my head (my little head voice whispered *give me some*). My brain kind of faded (*give me some*). Reality took flight and my comprehension skills went with it (*give me some*). I have less than five bucks in my purse, which I've had for a good two weeks (*give me some*) and I tried to imagine what it would be like to be worth six hundred million dollars (*give me some*). I couldn't. I can't. I know I was sitting there with a very stupid smile on my face as I did my best. I can't imagine life without holey carpeting. LOL!! What would I do with sofas that didn't sag? A mattress without lumps, what would that be like? (*give me some*) A new roof, not old wood shake like we have, a major fire hazard. We could have a fire in the fireplace, which we haven't had in over five or six years. (*give me some*) Brian could get his property. Oh, Lordy. Heck, I see that lotto is over $27 million now and that seems like a fortune to me. What am I saying, it IS a fortune, with six hundred million dollars, you kind of lose perspective *grins*. And this guy has six hundred million? Well, I guess you kind of get my drift. (*give me some*) Anyway, Brian and I talked about it and he said well, material just got marked up 200%. *grins* And if the (six hundred million dollar (*give me some*)) homeowner squawked about it, Brian would say, well how did you make all of your money? What kind of markup do you put on your products? (*give me some*) But Brian, like me, is highly ethical and moral and just because you *can* do something, doesn't mean that you *should*. If it doesn't feel right, it just isn't worth it. If we go to a store and are undercharged for something we let them know as soon as we notice it. I've called stores from home to let them know that we weren't charged enough (we buy cat food by the case and they only scanned one can, not 24) and the store managers have always said not to worry about it, they thank me for calling and will make the adjustments to their inventory. When I was single, once or twice a month, I would go to the grocery store closest to work on the way home, load up on groceries, and use my paycheck to pay for them, getting the balance of my check back in cash. Well, one time when I got home, I counted my money. I had too much. Trying to figure out what had happened, I realized that I hadn't been charged for my groceries. This was a Friday and I immediately called the store. The store manager said he would let the cashier know. She called me the next morning, and was really kind of snotty. She didn't say thank you or anything, she acted like it was my fault. So, I took time off of my weekend to drive the 20 minutes to the store, gave the manager the money and came home. I really think I deserved at least a thank you. I doubt she lasted much longer making those types of mistakes with that type of attitude to boot. (*give me some*)

So, as the conversation progressed, I asked Brian what the guy did for a living. Brian starts to tell me the story. I say "well, what does he do?" Brian says wait, wait, let me tell you the story. I'm sitting on the couch, with a mental remote control in my hand, pointed at him, and I'm clicking the fast forward button. Remember, he's a slow story teller and I am impatient. click's taking f o r e v e r . Anyway, he finally gets to the part where he tells me what the guy does. He manufactures and sells the gloves that are used in hospitals, by veterinarians, by the police, you know the ones? The kind that are used once, then thrown away. He has three factories, one in Taiwan and one in Malaysia, I think he said (my mind was still rolling around the six hundred million dollar figure at this time - *give me some* - things weren't sinking in very deeply).

I've been watching the newspaper for information on Proposition 10, the one that would raise the tax on a pack of cigarettes an additional fifty cents. In this morning's paper, they said that it looked like it passed. On election night, it was only 13,000 votes ahead (*give me some of that 600 mil, I need it*) and yesterday, after having counted more of the mail-in ballots, it was 57,000 ahead. I can't believe how much of the snail mail spam came from the anti prop 10 people, saying the money would go towards the bureaucracy, not health programs...blah....blah....blah. Well, you know, dear Proposition 10 opponents? I really don't give a rat's ass where the money goes. Hopefully, this will keep children from starting to smoke because of the cost. I know how hard it is for people to stop, once they start. I see my mom and I have some internet friends that smoke and they always seem to have colds or the flu. I don't think smoking is a *good thing*. We know one man that was smoking ten packs a day. No lie. We call him Cancer Dan, a takeoff of Cancer Man on the X-Files (who doesn't smoke *real* cigarettes, he quit years ago - he smokes clove cigarettes). He's said that he wants to be buried with two cigarettes in his mouth. Oh, and get this. He drives a fuel truck. How smart is that? I guess he recently had pneumonia, so he's cut back to eight packs a day. His wife also smokes. And they wish they had more material possessions. Okay, let's do the math. I don't know how much his wife smokes, but let's say it's two packs a day. Pre-pneumonia, that would have been 12 packs a day. I'm not sure how much cigarettes cost nowadays, but I just called a 7-11 and was told they are $2.53 (going up .50 January 1, 1999) a pack, with tax. Remember, that's here in California. I'm sure you can get them cheaper by the carton, so let's round this to $2.00 a pack.
$2.00 x 12 = $24.00 a day.
$24.00 x 365 = $8,760.00 a year.
I'm sorry, but that seems like such a big waste of money. Heck, I bet that would pay for our pet food and pet health care for the year. Which many people think is a waste of *our* money. But at least we have something to show for it, besides a permanent cough. I understand that the tobacco industry spent $35 million to defeat it. neener neener neener. (Six hundred million dollars *give me some*) Maybe my mom will cut back now. I sure hope so.


november 14, 1998 Geez, I didn't realize it's been so long since I've made an entry. I was busy, busy, busy yesterday, working on the new Rainbow Bridge postcard, decided I needed a perfect place to showcase it and just got carried away. I think it's one of the best things I've done so far. It turned out so well, I'm going to do a Serenity Prayer card, too. I already have the photograph picked out.

Well, Thursday, my CDRom drive died. So, I call my computer guy. On, no!!! He's not taking calls, he has a referral name. Darnit. So, I called the referral guy, told him right off that I didn't want to leave the house. Then he told me that I could buy a new one and install it myself. Huh, uh, you're not listening. I'm not doing ANYTHING inside that system again. And I'm don't want to take it someplace because they'll have it for at least a week and I don't want down time. He ended up giving the phone number of someone else, said it was a cell phone and I would probably get right ahold of him. I called and sure enough, he answered. He checked his schedule and said he could do it that afternoon. Well, I was pretty happy about that, but I had to move everything before he got here and do some dusting. (I could have crocheted an afghan with the cat fur that was behind everything.) He showed up a little after four, handed me a premade invoice and started working on the system. When he rebooted the computer, he noticed that my ISP is access 1. Turns out his girlfriend is a vice president there. Small world. He was a really nice kid, only 22. Well dressed, really great attitude and not one word of complaint about the cats, nor was there one sniffle from him. My old computer guy complained about my work area and cat hair and he's allergic to cats, on top of that. Maybe it was Sean's youthful enthusiasm, but I liked him. I hope he's still around when something else goes wrong with the system. I sent him a java lake postcard, thanking him for his help. He emailed back "neat, how did you do that?" That tells me he spends more time working than playing. LOL!!

I mentioned the Prop 10 tax to my mom on the phone yesterday and she voted for it, too. She's glad it passed. Said at the beginning of the year, she's gonna buy about 300 patches. *grins* Or rip out her geraniums and grow her own tobacco. She asked me to do an online search for her, for tobacco seeds or plants and I laughed, told her no way in hell would I contribute to that habit. She mentioned one of her neighbors said that she was going to quit because of health and this and that and mom busted her, said you're gonna quit because the price is going up .50 cents a pack, don't hand me that happy horsespit. (Except, she didn't say horse*spit*.) The neighbor feigned ignorance. What do you mean? What are you talking about? Mom just laughed at her.

Since I didn't make it to the bank Thursday (CDRom died, remember?), I went yesterday. My plan was to go pick up the shirts that Brian had made, then drive to the bank. Well, Brian called me yesterday morning (he was working in Malibu) and asked if I would get the shirts. I told him that had been my plan and he said thanks. I call ahead of time to find out how much to make the check out for and the owner was gone for the weekend. Well, Brian is going back to Phoenix (Six hundred million dollars *give me some*) and he really needs some decent shirts. The ones he has are really pretty bad. Little holes in the belly, stains from when he wears his work shirts while he's doing dirty work, not even thinking about it. And they're just old. I told the guy, 'well, I'm going to be in so much trouble if I don't get this shirts, you'll be keeping my butt out of hot water if you help me'. Now, understand, I had no idea why I even said that. I wasn't in trouble. Brian wouldn't have been mad. But, it was a fortunate turn of phrase, because the guy said let me call you back. He did, he found the shirts, but he couldn't find the receipt to let me know how much was due. Come on over and pick them up. So, I grabbed the checkbook and went out the door. Of course, I'm not real sure where the place is, I know it's just down the road, but not exactly where. And somebody was tailgating when I saw the turn and if I would have slowed down to make it, I would have been hit. The car could have easily gone around me sooner, it's a two lane road. I had to find a place to turn around. I did (my mom's mobile home park driveway) and got back to the t-shirt shop, picked up the shirts (didn't pay anything, the guy wasn't able to find the receipt, but he said he trusted me. Smart man - his hands were freezing, I told him that he had cold hands and he said the shop was cold and I said, well, you know what they say, cold hands, warm heart. I think he liked that.) He carried the shirts out to the truck and I opened up the back and in they went. I said goodbye, backed out and came home. I opened up the house, then went back out to get the box. Keep in mind, I'm short. My arm span isn't huge. The box is probably 3.5 high x 2.5 feet deep. It was an awkward size. And it was heavy. I carried it partway into the entryway to the house, then dragged it the rest of the way. I left it in the front entryway of the house. The cats were intrigued, sniffing it and jumping up on it.

Then I got the stuff ready for the bank. I thought to myself that it was a bad time to go, the lunch hour, but what the heck, I might as well get it out of the way. I get to the drive through, not bad, one car in two of the lanes, two cars in two of the lanes. I got into one of the lanes with one car. And I sat there. Don't you just hate it when people aren't ready? When they don't have the information that's needed? You see them sitting in their vehicles filling out deposit slips, talking with the teller "I need a pen". "Oh, can you send a deposit slip?" "Can you help me find my rear end?" (This is one of my pet peeves. What? they just drive by the bank and think "hey, I think I'll do some drive through banking??" They didn't know they were going to the bank? If they don't have the right stuff, then they should park the car, and walk inside. You should only drive through bank if you're ready. IMO. Oh, and what's the deal with one driveup teller during the lunch hour? What's with that? That doesn't seem very smart to me. You would think that they would have more tellers when the demand was normally heavier. Like lunch hour on Friday. Duh.) So, the guy in front of me was already there when I pulled in. The other single car left. Then, we wait. And we wait. And we wait. Traffic is building up. I'm looking at the three vehicles that were there before me, guessing which one is the moron. The people around me are looking around, wondering which one is the moron. Who's holding up the line? Who wasn't ready? I had opened the windows and turned off the truck. Listened to a local talk radio show, a talker I don't usually care for, but yesterday, he and his callers just kept making me laugh. The man in the car in front of me comes to life. He talks into the speaker. I turn the radio down, trying to listen intently. I hear him ask "well, how much is there in the account?" The teller says something back. She had to call someplace else and they said something to the effect that they couldn't do what he wanted. He replies. Then I hear her ask if he has an account there. Oh, this a$$hole. He's smiling. Not a care in the world. He tells her yes. She asks for his account number. Yeah, right, without looking, tell me your bank account number. He leans back in his seat, stretches. I see his smile in his rearview mirror. Yes, life is good, he's thinking. I look at the guy in the orange van next to me. We shrug at each other. The conversation in front of me ends. Then, about five minutes later, I hear the noise of the container being sent to him. He reaches for it, takes it, opens it. I start the truck back up. Then I see his arm snake out of the window, he pushes the intercom button. There's something wrong with the receipts. Oh, gawd, how much longer is this going to be? He sends the receipts back to her. The guy next to me is getting steamed. He lays on his horn. It sounds like a cadillac horn. The moron in front of me turns around, looks at me. I'm laughing. He looks at the van driver, but can't figure out who honked. No cadillacs in sight. Now, the moron is getting a little nervous. About time, I think. He realizes that he's not the only car in line. He realizes that there's one teller. He realizes that people are getting a little annoyed. And he realizes it's because of him. Yes, he is the center of the universe. And his universe is not a happy one. He starts squirming in his seat. The guy next to me yells over about what an idiot this guy is. And I yell back, I don't understand why there is only one teller working. At least the other lines could be moving. Traffic is back to the street in all four lanes now. Oh, it looks like they just brought another teller in. One car leaves the line. Then, there is activity again in front of me. The receipts are sent back. He takes them, looks at them, reaches out to talk to the teller. NO!!!!! Please, just go!!!!! I don't want to be here all day, yes, I know I have no life, but I don't want to live it here in line. He says "thank you", then leaves. Putz. I start up, wave at the guy in the van next to me, pull up, send my deposit through and within two minutes, I'm outta there and on my way home. It's taken over a half hour. And I was second in line. Sheesh.

Let's see, what else has happened? (Seinfeld had a show about nothing and made millions. I have a life about nothing and make squat. Where's the fairness in that? LOL. Hey, everybody reading this, send me a nickel. I think that's a pretty fair price for my life's story. I should be a millionaire by the time I reach 500 years old, if I invest wisely. *snicker* Geez, I hear about someone with six. hundred. million. dollars. and I start to get greedy.) Okay.

Angus and OC still come by for their evening meal. The tortie was out front yesterday, I talked to her for a long time, through the door, trying to get her to come in. But she didn't run from me, like before. I wonder if someone owns her, or she's a feral. I don't know where she came from if she's feral. I thought all of the females were fixed. Not behind us, but in front of us, for sure. Angus is the only cat I've seen go from behind us to in front of us. I haven't seen the black cat in about a week. I'd sure like to know what the deal is with him.

Last night, before Brian got home, I was sitting on the couch, calling to Red. I dropped my head, in the submissive position, but I was still sitting on the couch. He slowly came over. I quickly looked up, dropped my head again, and said his name again. He slowly walked up the stairs we have there for Bobby. I was sitting on the couch where the top of the stairs are. I dropped my head lower. Red gave me a headbutt. This is good. I think, I'll try to sit back and have him come onto the couch. Mickey had different ideas. He walks down from the back of the couch, sniffs Red, slaps him. Red runs off. MICKEY!!!! You are so bad, I tell him. You are such a brat. He doesn't care.

Brian made it home by ten. He looked and sounded beat. He put his stuff in the office, then came out and sat on his recliner. I was on the couch. We watched tv, I fell asleep. We decided it's time to go to bed. He turns off the satellite receiver and the tv, I turn off the lights in the living room. Brian walked into the kitchen to turn off the light in there. Red was on the chair in the living room, and as I usually do when I see him there, I sat next to him, lay my head next to his. I scratch his back, he purrs. We do this for a while, then something startles him and he jumps off of the chair. I stay there. I call to him. For the first time ever, he comes back. He lays on my head. He's purring. He resituates himself. I look at him, give him a last good night headbutt and go to bed.

There we are, laying in bed. We hear a noise. What is it? What are they getting into now? Brian yells "Stop it!" The noise continues. I say, what is it? He says, it's the cats and the t-shirt box, which was still in the entryway. Continued scritching sounds. Words aren't going to stop this cat from getting what s/he wants. Whatever is in that box. *yawn* Brian gets out of bed, chases the cat on the box (Bart) away, the grabs the box. Now, he's probably thinking, it can't be too heavy, she brought it in. Guess what? He says "How did you get this into the house? It's really heavy." He carries/drags it to the exercise room, I hear him shove it inside. The entire time muttering, "I can't believe you got that inside by yourself"....yeah, well, I have my ways...

Finally, it's time to sleep and sleep I do. Until 3:30, when Benny decides it's time to get me out of bed. I roll over. A cat complains. It's DeeJay. Now, when did he decide to start sleeping in here again? What a pain. Everytime I move, he let's me know it wasn't acceptable, that I didn't have his permission. I get up, take care of Benny. (What's with the nocturnal noise, anyway? He never did this before the past month.) Climb back into bed. Mrowr....shut up, DeeJay. Back to sleep.

Now, it's a new day. I need some more coffee.


november 16, 1998 Well, Brian's gone again. I figured I would wait to write today.

I have another postcard up, this one is the Serenity Prayer. When I was notified that the prayer code was working, it didn't look right on the card. It seems as if I stopped the gif from fully uploading to my directory. The bottom part of the picture was gone. It took me about a half hour to figure out what was wrong with it, but it's working now.

Well, Saturday, Brian went through the t-shirts so that I could wash them. Remember the cat that was tugging at the box? That cat put a hole in the top t-shirt. Fortunately, it was an extra large, one that Brian had made for me. I don't care about holey clothes, I have so many. But Brian wasn't really happy about it. Then I hear him swear. I ask what's wrong. He said "they have the phone number on them". He specifically said, no phone number when he ordered them. You never know when we might be moving, you see? But, the phone number wasn't on my white shirts, just all of the xlarge and large, blue, black, and white shirts. I'm thinking great. He said that I would have to take them back, they were unacceptable and that he wasn't going to pay for them, at least not full price. *sigh* I hate having to do things like this. I checked my desk, asked him if he knew where the receipt was. "I gave it to you." I come back into the office, tear everything on my side of the room apart. Look through all of the piles of paperwork a couple of times each. I can't find it. I go back into the tv room. "I can't find it. Are you sure you gave it to me?" Yes, he says. I say "Are you sure? You don't have it folded up and stuck someplace like you do with paperwork so often?" No. I come back to the office, start looking through his work paperwork. I hear him in the bedroom. He shouts out "I found it!!". Where was it? "Oh, with my stuff in here." Good place for it, I think. And sure enough, it was all folded up. "The cats peed on it." So what? Tell me something new. Besides, it only had a little. I look at it. "How come where it says "no phone #" it's scratched out?" He said, I don't know, he told me that that means don't print the phone number. (The original artwork from years ago, has the phone number on it, that's why he has to request no phone number.) I have to admit, I'm sceptical, but I'm not going to argue about it. Anyway, just something else for me to do this week. So, this morning, the phone rings. It's a woman at the t-shirt place. She told me that they knew the shirts were wrong and that if we wanted the phone numbers off, to just bring the shirts back in and they would take them off. How they do it, I don't know. I'm not looking forward to packing up the shirts and bringing them back in, but I will. At least there weren't any problems. That's a relief.

I had emailed the people that we are going to get the polycarbonate from about paying for the order. There's a 5% discount for email orders, made with a credit card. We don't have a credit card with a $15,000 limit. So, I have to send a cashier's check. Well, Brian kept saying we should get the credit. I kept saying, but that's not how the rules are written up. The guy called this morning, while Brian was gone, getting ready for the trip to Phoenix. He said that the discount wouldn't apply. I sigh. And that the size of the product was 5/16 of an inch bigger than the product information states. I ask if it's okay if I have Brian call him back within the hour. He was hesitant about leaving a phone number, I could tell he's not use to dealing with people very much. Anyway, he left the number, Brian called him back and he told Brian that he didn't know if he could even find that much material. Wonderful. So, I'm waiting for a call back to find out the price of the material and then I'll go to the bank. I'm not going to go today, though. I'll go first thing tomorrow.

I get to dogsit next week.

Hey, I heard on the newsgroup that a state rep in Massachusetts is filing to get declawing banned in that state. I guess a constituent asked him about it and he feels its a good idea. So do I. If it can get passed in one state, that will make it easier in others.

I think I'm going to go finish reading a book. It's been a while since I've done that.


november 18, 1998 Still pretty quiet. All the cats seem healthy, the dogs, too. Buddy seems a little tired, but he's eating and drinking okay.

One thing I forgot to mention earlier was that Lisa is getting heavier. We came up with a new plan, since it would be really hard to feed each cat individually. The new plan? I don't leave the food out 24 hours. I put it out for a couple of hours in the morning and a couple of hours at night. So far, the cats are sure coming in better at night. Guess they're hungry. The first day we did this, Lisa was all over the place, much more active. I told Brian "she's looking for food, is why." I hope this works.

I just went outside to get the paper and OC was on the bank, cuddled up in the African Daisy's. Of course, he ran when he saw me. Darnit. I told him that he was welcome to live here. I'll keep trying. But it's nice to know he sleeps over here at night. I've seen him on top of the food station stretched out before, and that's *in* the entryway.

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lisaviolet is fifty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

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