Sunday, February 27, 2011

You've Got a Friend

With the Oscars on tonight, I thought I'd give my thoughts on the Social Network. I've been thinking about it since we watched it a couple of weeks ago.

Really, the one thing that sticks out in my mind is just how lonely Mark Zuckerberg is. And it's interesting how he developed a friend-social networking site. Yet, he really doesn't have any friends.

Of course I realize the movie may not have portrayed MZ as realistically as possible, but I doubt it was really that far off.

Regardless, if nothing else, the Social Network left me feeling kind of badly for MZ. Sure, he's one of the youngest billionaires in the world. If he wanted to, he could buy a whole gaggle of friends. But, they really wouldn't be friends. I wonder what he does when he goes home at night. Does he hang out with the Facebook staff? Go to happy hours? Have a pet to squash his loneliness? I mean, there are times in my life when I feel pretty lonely, especially these past 4 months on bed rest. But I always know there's someone in my life I could turn to if I need to. Does he have that someone?

Why I'm pondering the life and love of Mark Zuckerberg, I have no idea. I enjoyed the movie as it was pretty interesting how it all unfolded and MZ basically screwed the one friend he had. But it just left me feeling sorry for this poor kid that now has all the money a person could possibly want yet no meaningful relationships or people to share in his happiness. Does he have a family? His family was never mentioned in the movie. Surely he has a mom that he could at least go to dinner at some swanky restaurant.

In watching the red carpet coverage of the Oscars, I saw Jesse Eisenberg's interview. I've seen him on Conan and in a couple of other interviews. You know, he's exactly like MZ. Well, he resembles the character completely. And I feel bad for Jesse too. Yes, I know, he's a young kid with a very promising career ahead of him. Up for an Oscar, etc. But he just seems so lonely.

I guess my point is to hold onto the people that mean something to you. Even with all the riches in the world, happiness isn't a guarantee unless you have someone to share it with.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Stray Cat Blues

When I was 19, I transferred from George Mason University to Arizona State. It was a weird time in my life and I wanted to get away from the east coast and try something new. I knew a few people out in AZ and visited them for spring break that year. I was sold. I applied and was accepted and moved out there in May of 1995.

Once I had settled into the house I was renting with my roommate, it was time to get my cat. I always had pets growing up, including a cat who I adored. My roommate had a dog, so I was ready for a cat.

The night before we went to the Humane Society in Mesa, we watched this hokey movie, "Corrina Corrina" with Whoopie Goldberg. It was pretty lame, but there was this little boy in the movie that I found to be hilarious. His name was Percy and for some reason, I loved him. He was spunky and feisty and when he laughed, his mouth opened as wide as his face and his whole body shook.

When we got to the Humane Society the next day, they took us to see the cats. It was this long hallway-type room with cages lining the walls. The doors to the cages were mesh that went from the floor to the ceiling, with a little shelf in the middle, probably about chest-height for an average adult. I walked into the room and my eyes went straight to this little black fluff ball that had somehow gotten himself on the middle shelf. He was meowing and his mouth was so wide, you could hardly see the rest of his little face. That was it, I wanted him. He was spunky and feisty. He had guts since he climbed that huge cage door. It was Percy.

When doing the paperwork, we found out the Mesa Humane Society is not a no-kill shelter and they give their animals 11 days to be adopted before they "dispose" of them. Percy was on his 10th day and I saved his little life.

I should have known from the car ride home that living with Percy wouldn't be easy. He scratched and clawed me the whole way, all 5 minutes, back to the house. I was wearing a tank top and my whole upper body was covered in scratches and blood. I looked like an extra in a horror movie. But we survived.

I have to say Percy was a pretty hilarious kitten. He was about a month old when I got him and he was certainly feisty. He tormented my roommate's dog, he climbed the curtains in the house and would sleep on top of the curtain rod, he would get into everything. Then there were his stealth attacks. He would hide somewhere and pounce on you when you were least expecting it. Jump on your head, your shoulders, attach himself to your legs, whatever he could sink his teeth and claws into. The worst was what I termed "the Koala bear." He would jump up on your leg and wrap himself around your leg using his claws and gnaw your leg. Thinking about it now I laugh because it must have been hilarious seeing me try to get him off my leg. But at the time I was not pleased.

And this was just our first summer together. By September, I moved out of the house and into an apartment closer to school. It was me and Percy living large. That cat definitely made for interesting moments. He would steal my food, jump into the refrigerator if you left the door open long enough (I did have air conditioning so it wasn't that hot!), he would jump into the shower when you were done so he could lick the water droplets. Then he would stay in there and scare the crap out of you when he would pop out while you were in the bathroom.

His love of food really developed that fall. I couldn't simply eat a yogurt and throw away the container because Percy would knock the trash can down and go into the trash to get the container. Those last few licks were worth all the trouble, I assume. I would have to run the containers through the dishwasher before throwing them out. If I left my lunch out in the morning before school, and didn't put it in my bag right away, Percy would tear into it. A lot of times I wouldn't know until I pulled it out later and noticed the holes in the bag of my sandwich. I had to schedule his neutering several times because the nights before the surgery, when he needed to fast, he would somehow get into the cabinet and gnaw a hole into his food bag and eat half the bag. No matter where I put the food, he found it. He was like a dog.

Oh, that cat was my sidekick. He traveled across the country several times. I took him home for Christmas (where he would promptly knock the Christmas tree down); he's probably flown more than most people. When we moved back east, he was right there in between me and my dad in the truck. He's even been to Graceland.

Percy was there for all my big life moments. He was pissed when John and I started dating and eventually moved in together and got married. He tolerated John to say the least, though he attacked him as much as he did me (that's how we knew Percy loved John). We had a pet rabbit named Rupert. Percy actually liked him. He would sit on top of his crate and put his paw in and bat him around. When we let Rupert out, though, Percy wouldn't really bother him. Percy tolerated Lola when we brought her home. But he promptly showed her who was boss and attacked her quite often. He was indifferent when Keller was born, which was a good thing. He would sniff at him but then walk away.

Percy's health started going downhill when he was about 10 or 11. There were a couple of times when we didn't know if he would make it. But he always did. Then last summer the vet said his kidneys were only functioning at about 25%. We gave him subcutaneous fluids and a special diet, but that was about all we could do. Even though he seemed fine, he had lost a lot of weight and was losing his spunky self. In the beginning of February, we took him to the vet and we were told his kidneys weren't really functioning, he was probably in some pain and things were not looking good. So, we let him go. Once we knew he may have been in pain, we knew we shouldn't hang on to him. That's not right.

How do you say goodbye to your first love? Percy was the one constant in my life for 16 years. I knew him longer than my husband. He may have been an asshole at times, and I have the scars to prove it, but he was my cat and I loved him. He greeted me when I came home and kept me company when I needed him. Life with Percy was interesting. You never knew what would happen!

I still think I see him in areas around the house. And I swear I hear him meowing and chirping every now and then. It makes me sad that the birth of the babies will be the first big moment in my life that Percy won't be a part of. But we'll always remember him and love him.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Push It

A friend of mine politely reminded me that I haven't posted to my blog in a while. As I told him, I'm kind of lacking the motivation. I have plenty to say as so much is going on, but just no motivation to write.

So the last time I posted it was the beginning of the new year. Leading up to 2011, the days were draggggging. Oh, it was painful. And I just kept telling myself to get to January and the babies will be here before we know it. Really, since January 1st, the days really have been flying by. Well, being on bed rest the term "days flying by" has a different meaning. The days aren't really flying by but the time is passing a lot faster than it was before.

My days still consist primarily of work, which definitely helps pass the time. But each day is interupted by waves of panic that wash over me. These kids are arriving soon and we don't have a whole lot done. I guess we kind of do, but it doesn't feel that way. I think any parent, new or expecting baby #2 (or 3 or 4) will feel a bit ill-prepared. Things are much more complicated and hectic this go around than with Keller. Even though I was on bed rest with him, we didn't have a 5-year old running around at the same time.

Let's recap what has been going on (I'll try to be brief):
  • I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes (which really blows)

  • We lost our beloved cat, Percy. I'll probably write more about that at a different time.

  • We set the date for the delivery of the babies: March 21st (let the wave of panic wash over me again)

Of course there were other things going on, but I would say these were the main occurences. It's been an interesting month or so. And the next month is going to be filled with moments of insanity. I can't believe the babies are coming in less than 5 weeks. They will be here at any time in the next 5 weeks. That's too much for me to think about right now. I need to go take a nap.