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I’ll take “things unexpectedly impacted by Covid-19”

No, I am not an unlicensed stoat. This is a license for trapping stoats AND MURDERING THEM.

I’ll give you “vermin”!

I think we’ll venture out tomorrow. We’re about to run out of milk. Not sure if they’ll let us both in the store at the same time, though. It’s gotten that weird.

At least we can go to a small local grocer and avoid the supermarkets.

March 31, 2020 — 8:15 pm
Comments: 6

The Stoats of Science!




Stoats as a Unit of Measurement. Get your poster here. No, not my work.

A reminder:

American           British
Weasel              Stoat
Least Weasel        Weasel

First lambs today! I could hear them yesterday, but not see them, so I went in search of laa bam at dusk today. I couldn’t get close enough for photography, though — the mamas didn’t like the look of me at all.

The lockdown continues apace. It’s as quiet as Christmas morning out there. We’re doing fine, though we’ll run out of fresh milk soon. My spies tell me the shop in town has plenty of everything. May go for a field trip soon.

Welcome to Week Two of the Plague!







March 30, 2020 — 7:42 pm
Comments: 11

The Return of Spoon

I hauled myself out at six this morning, no Spoon. I had plenty to do in the garden (it’s a mess after six months of daily rain) so I hung out and pottered around and about 8:30, a blackberry bramble in the drive began to softly “bok?…bok? Bok?…bok?”

You’ll have to take my word for the question marks. She sounded puzzled. And, honestly, who among us has NOT woken up in a hedge mid-morning with no idea how she got there?

She was about six feet up a bramble, in a kind of hole. I had to get my gloves to lift her out or I would have been torn to bits.

She was safe enough up there. The polands generally go way high and are protected for the night. The danger is next morning, when they flap down to ground level. If there isn’t a human around to stink up the place and keep the foxes at bay, there’s a real risk.

Tonight, all my chickens are right where they should be. Perhaps I can get a decent night’s sleep and a bit of a late morning, for once. Have a good weekend, everyone! (As if weekends held any meaning).

March 27, 2020 — 7:19 pm
Comments: 13

Nothing happens to me now that doesn’t involve chickens

I had a brilliant idea to take Mo, my most violent cockerel, and shut him up with his girlfriend in the fruit cage, so he could get some free ranging time without being within murdering distance of the other boys.

Bad plan. He managed to escape in about ten seconds flat and corner the two poland roosters way deep in the hedge where I couldn’t get to him. I’m crawling on my elbows through brambles trying to grab his scrawny neck when the kitten wonders, academically, whether it would be fun to chase the hen around the fruit cage, violently.

I got everything sorted in the end and sat down, scratched and muddied, to an ice cold cup of coffee.

Say a prayer for my girl Spoon, pictured, who didn’t come home at roll call. I think the two cats energetically playfighting in the garden occasionally spooks a chicken out of her usual territory. I’m not out with them all the time. I walked around and called to her until it was too dark to see anything.

Cross your fingers that she turns up in the morning. She’s my favorite chicken.

March 26, 2020 — 8:33 pm
Comments: 10

That’s what I wanted!

See, this is what the whole exercise was about: cat buddies. They’ve been playfighting and rough-housing, but this is the first time I’ve caught them having a snooze together.

Something about not usually being allowed to sleep on the bed that will do that.

‘Twas a glorious sunny day in the garden today, but another near freezing one tonight – a pattern that will be repeated for some time.

Off for a bath!

March 25, 2020 — 7:36 pm
Comments: 8

Last trip for a while…

We were non-compliant today! We left the house!

We’ve had Wellington’s last shots scheduled for weeks. This morning, we called the vet and they counselled us to come in as planned as this was their last day for who knows how long. They’re shutting it down. We didn’t get to go in, though. You wait in your car, someone comes out and takes the cat carrier, vanishes inside and returns a little while later with your cat.

Nice young lady vet came out and said, “I know this one! I did his castration!”

How nice.

Afterwards, we swung by the gas station and got some bread and toilet paper, as you do.

And that’s it. Now we’re locked down tight.

*sighs* *looks around the room* *sighs again*

March 24, 2020 — 8:34 pm
Comments: 14

Semi kinda sorta lockdown

Behold, the spectral image of the prime minister, giving us a bollicking just now.

To be fair, people have been awful about self-isolating, particularly in the cities. But I’m not sure he made the rules any clearer. You’re allowed to go out for one ‘exercise activity’ a day — a run or walk or summat. You can go to the park, but police have the power to break up groups. You can go for a medical need or to take care of a vulnerable person. And to work. And you can go to the store for food.

We’ve been good so far and lucky to get a couple of food delivery slots. We haven’t so much as looked at a can of beans yet. But…tomorrow, Wellington has his second set of shots. Is a vet visit a medical need?

Our upstairs shower is broken. Can we call the plumber? Should we?

This plague business is awfully confusing.

March 23, 2020 — 8:48 pm
Comments: 17

Welp, that’s me done

photo DerHHO

Laid off and locked down. Whuff!

Earlier today, I was talking to coffee houses and shops in town who were determined to stay open as long as they could. That turned out to be another four or five hours. Boris’ briefing this afternoon pulled the plug on us all.

An awful lot of businesses won’t survive this. And the government will go deeply into debt trying to stop it. And for the foreseeable, no parties, church fetes, village celebrations. A lot of things will go and never come back. This is not a temporary change, even if they lift the lockdown in a few weeks.

They won’t. The official sources say ‘social isolation’ for at least a year.

Ah, well. I’ll keep posting, I suppose, but I won’t have anything to say. The occasional chicken picture, perhaps. We have provisioned so well ahead of time, I’m not sure when we’ll next leave the house.

You may do as you like in the comments. I know there are many more congenial places online to gather for a chat, but I would be honored if you jabbered away on my blog – about the virus or anything you please. I’m’a get very bored.

Have a good weekend! Some day we will say, where were you in the time of the plague? And you can say, shitposting on sweasel.com!

March 20, 2020 — 9:32 pm
Comments: 36

Shhhh…don’t tell anybody

…I got a P95 for my birthday last year. At least, I think it’s a P95. Googling is a bit uncertain.

Never mind. It’s got the filter for particulates, which I don’t think is fine enough for viruses anyway. I don’t think the authorities will be kicking down my door for it.

They finally decided to close my workplace today. Sort of. There are still some holdouts, but we certainly won’t open where I work.

I have to go in tomorrow and write up a bunch of statements and social media posts. Be just like me to catch it on my last day in town.

Still, my case of gin came. I think I’m as prepped as a prepper can prep.

March 19, 2020 — 9:20 pm
Comments: 12

When I’m blue, I shoot people

I bet sales of computer games have gone through the roof! I know Steam has offered me several items on my wishlist at nice prices.

Like this one: Far Cry 5. Ubisoft did a clever marketing thing with it; I don’t know if you remember. When it was in development, word got out that your enemy in the game is a bunch of redneck religious nuts in Montana.

Well, the purple hairs loved this. If you’re not aware, computer games are yet another sphere of entertainment they are attempting to suck all the fun out of. The idea that you run around shooting MAGA-hatters delighted a certain chunk of the prospective audience and dismayed an even larger one. It was a tetchy time in 2018.

Then the game came out and it’s true: you shoot rednecks. But you also are a redneck yourself and all your friends and allies are rednecks. This is Montana; it’s rednecks all the way down.

We should have trusted the Far Cry series; it’s gloriously insensitive. You get money shooting endangered species and selling their bits. Not to mention shooting people. Lots and lots of people.

I’m having fun. I only wish I had a real gun 🙁

March 18, 2020 — 9:14 pm
Comments: 9