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Let the bee puns commence!

I’m on three blood pressure meds and I haven’t had a meds check in years; got a note in my last packet of drugs telling me I have to go in or they’re cutting me off.

So. Doctor’s appointment today. Just putting on my shoes to leave the house and…I step on a bumblebee. This answers two burning questions: 1. Yes. Bumblebees sting. 2. No, they don’t shed their whole backend and die like honey bees.

At least, this guy looked okay afterwards. I scooped him up in a jar and took him outside, which I thought was damn decent of me, all things considered.

I didn’t get too much of a dose, I guess. I didn’t smush him, and — unexpectedly, I must say — my bp was a very calm and collected 120/70.

June 19, 2018 — 7:58 pm
Comments: 6

Face panties! For your cat!

Just something I found while I was looking for something else on eBay. Straight from China!

They’re supposed to protect you while you groom or otherwise do things to your cat.

I dunno. Every cat I’ve ever known, presented with one of these, would flip out and run backwards screaming. And, some fine Summer’s night when you least expect it, murder you in your sleep.

Hello and welcome to the second week in June.

June 11, 2018 — 8:05 pm
Comments: 11

The Chicken Man, the Chicken Man

After work today, we went to see the Chicken Man. I’m sure he has a name, but I’m sure I don’t know what it is.

We bought our first two chickens from him, eight years ago, and one is still going strong. I remember I was eyeballing some baby Orpingtons (perfectly ENORMOUS chickens when they’re all growed up) and Uncle B was looking miserable about it. Thinking of his garden, and what those giant poultry bombs could do to it.

We decided to decide later. On our way out the door, we passed some pretty little chickens. Uncle B said, “what are these? They look nice.” And the chicken man said, “pff! Those are bantams. I thought you wanted chickens.”

And the rest is history.

He’s far away, he’s very expensive, but I needed some stuff and sometimes only the Chicken Man will do. Have a great weekend!

June 1, 2018 — 8:46 pm
Comments: 15

Zzzzz

D’awwww…you get the most adorable results when you Google Image Search “sleepy weasel.” Though most of ’em are ferrets.

Puts me in mind of the time I ran across a ferret rescue at a village fete and squeee’d, “Squee! Weasels!” and the owner replied, “Madame, that is not a weasel. It is a ferret.”

One thing I have learned living here: I probably am not going to like any statement that begins with “Madame…”

Or “Muddum…” as they say. It don’t suit me. It don’t suit me at all.

Innyhoo! Today got away from me somehow and I don’t have anything interesting report, so I’m off to bed, frightfully early. See you in the ante meridiem.

May 22, 2018 — 9:25 pm
Comments: 9

y u do dis?

Anybody understand seagulls? I grew up a thousand miles from the sea, so I don’t have the usual seaside prejudices about gulls. On the other hand, they’re a mystery to me.

In the town where I work, the rooves are covered with little clumps of moss. And every Spring, the gulls pluck the moss off clump by clump and drop it on the sidewalk. I mean, seriously — the sidewalks are covered with flattened mossburgers where people have walked on it.

Today, I had to sit through a meeting on an upper floor, and I watched a gull on the roof across from me busily snatching up clumps of moss and tossing them over the side.

I know what you’re thinking – they’re building nests. Well they’re not. Okay, maybe they are, but I don’t see them doing it. I see them plonking them into the road deliberately. Last year, I was talking to a lady in the street when a wet ripe moss splatted onto her head. She said, “eh, they do that.”

They do! Buy why?

Think on it, get back to me, and have a good weekend!

April 27, 2018 — 9:18 pm
Comments: 19

i got nothin’

“As if their deadly venom and spiny exteriors weren’t enough, scientists have discovered that stonefish have a hidden switchblade in their heads that they can flick out whenever they feel like they’re in danger.”

I was out late tonight (at a history lecture, thanks very much) so have a badass fish in lieu of effortpost. G’nght!

April 12, 2018 — 9:16 pm
Comments: 12

She found herself a little patch of sun…

They predicted rain all weekend long, and they were wrong. For a few hours, gloriously wrong. Sun, lambs, chickens…it’s here at last.

Of course, they predicted dry and cloudy today and it pissed all over me on the way home, so bad forecast giveth and bad forecast taketh away.

In this country, you’re better off just looking out the window.

April 9, 2018 — 9:38 pm
Comments: 12

Sometimes I think my Twitter feed is taunting me

Then I remember how gosh-darned photogenic stoats are. Of course, Twitter being Twitter, I couldn’t find the photo again when I went back to look for it.

But I found it in the real world. This photo was a runner up (boo!) in the junior category for Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013. Here’s the photo in glorious color, with a bit about the young man who took the picture. He will go far!

April 5, 2018 — 9:49 pm
Comments: 10

It’s a ratty, ratty, ratty world

Happy World Rat Day! No, really. Rattophobes (AKA musophobes, murophobes or suriphobes), turn away now.

I was born in the Year of the Rat, and I’ve always had a soft spot for rodents. In isolation — I mean, not living in the walls and peeing on your cornflakes — they are nice, clean and friendly little beasties.

I got quite interested in fancy mouse breeding in my twenties, until it was driven home to me that culling is an important part of the hobby. Not really into crushing babbies, me.

Still, I learned enough about rodent husbandry that I was quite excited to come to London. One of our first dates, I made Uncle B take me to the London and Southern Counties Rat and Mouse Club, the oldest fancy rat club in the world.

We went to a rat and mouse show. And he married me anyway.

The hobby owes its origins to Jack Black, Queen Victoria’s rat catcher. Whenever he trapped an unusual-looking rat, he spared its life and bred it. A hundred and umpty years later, and the number of recognized varieties of fancy rat is astonishing.

Though I’ve kept many mice as pets over the years, I’ve never kept a rat. They are smart and friendly (and large) enough to capture your affection like a proper pet, but they don’t live long. And they tend to die horribly.

Anyway. Not sure how you celebrate World Rat Day. Eat a peanut butter sandwich and shit on the counter?

April 4, 2018 — 9:25 pm
Comments: 15

Okay, NOW it’s Spring…

At last, they’ve let the new mamas and babies out in the fields. We have them on two sides (behind us is a house and across the road are the yearlings, too young to breed). I’d forgotten the racket lambs and they mamas make, night and day.

…meeeehhhhhhhhhh…
…AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH…

Call and repeat. I love it. The Silence of the lambs is a thing, but we don’t have to be sad here. They move all the sheep to Winter pasture after harvest, so we never know who lives and who dies. The ewes I say good morning to today are the lambs I went SQUEEE over two years ago. It’s the circle of life, fam!

Ah, but I know what you’re thinking — that thing in the picture isn’t a lamb. No, it’s a pepper. A sweet pepper with the improbable name of Gogorez.

They’re billing it as a “beefsteak pepper” – short and fat and fleshy – and they’re promoting it super hard. Uncle B., the seasoned gardener that he is, is immune to such marketing nonsense.

But I’m not! He’s growing me a Gogorez!! SQUEEE!

April 3, 2018 — 7:15 pm
Comments: 7