The Freak-Out

Oh, lord, people. This afternoon, I had an anxiety… not attack… but fit, I guess, about the manuscript. About how it sucks, about how I can’t send it out, about how, if I do send it out, I am a fraud because I have nothing lined up next. How they’ll like it, but they won’t like me.  And on and on.

It’s fine. I’ve talked myself down.

But lord almighty, I’m starting to understand why writers drink.

I mean, I applied for college. I applied for grad school (two years in a row!). I’ve applied for jobs. I’ve sent my little boat of awesomeness out into the world before. But damn.

I need to get my shit in order and just start submitting. If I don’t, I’m going to break out in worse hives.

This afternoon, I had myself convinced I have hookworms. Then I looked up hookworms on the internet and decided that I don’t.

Ha ha ha. I can always tell when I’m especially anxious, my posts get all disjointed.

But I did buy (Someone owns So, I guess some practical part of me thinks I may need it.

And I do have this weird itchy spot on my arm that is shaped like a question mark. Now that I’m convinced it’s not a hookworm, the reason I’m convinced that it’s some kind of contact dermatitus is that I’m developing a mirror image rash across the elbow from it, which would suggest that I got into something, folded my arm up and it got in both spots.

Or that it’s a sign from the Universe. ?


? is my message from the Universe? God damn it, that’s just like the Universe to be so ambiguous. And itchy.

Men & Women

1. I know it’s silly, but this kind of breaks my heart. It’s like the trick of society. “We’ve heard your complaints and decided to rectify them by treating men the same way!” Um, wait. That’s not what I wanted.

2. Joey Garrison writes about women in local politics. Yep. … It’s a good article, just depressing.

Running Through the Checklist

I’m glad this woman brought this guy to court, but I’m afraid these dogs are still going to be a danger to the neighborhood if the resolution is to lock them in a stronger cage.

You know my predictive checklist for if a dog is dangerous:

–Is it larger than 25 lbs?

–Is it an intact male?

–Is it kept outside unsupervised for lengthy periods of time?

–Is it running loose outside?

–Is it unsupervised?

–If supervised, does the owner have control over it?

–Does it have adequate housing?

–Have the dog’s owners made some effort to present it as possibly dangerous–scary name, scary collar, thick chain, etc.?

Now, let me be clear. There are dogs who meet every criteria on this list, who aren’t dangerous, but, if you’re wondering, “Is that dog safe?” the answers to these questions are going to serve you better than the answer to “Is it a pitbull?” will.

And look how the dogs in this story fit. Larger than 25 lbs? Yep. Intact male? I don’t know, but I’ve asked someone familiar with the case. Were the dogs kept outside unsupervised for lengthy periods of time? Sure sounds like it, since they were being fed outside and the resolution of this case involves making them a sturdier enclosure. Running loose? Sadly, yes. Unsupervised? Doesn’t sound like it this time, but the previous attack does. Does the owner have control over it? Nope. Adequate housing? I meant this in terms of “Does the dog have appropriate shelter?” not “Is it restrained well enough?” since I think it’s self-evident that, if your dogs can get out of any place they’re enclosed in, they shouldn’t be enclosed in that space and left unsupervised. And we can’t tell from this story if they had adequate shelter. Presented as possibly dangerous? One dog’s name was “Trouble.” So, yeah, kind of.

That’s four of eight criteria those dogs definitely met with two we don’t know (‘adequate shelter’ and ‘intact male’), and one criteria they kind of met (name).

I think another guide is this: if the owners seem afraid of the dogs–and keeping dogs of breeds that are notorious couch potatoes locked in pens out back would be an indication they’re afraid of the dogs–there’s good reason for the neighbors to be afraid of the dogs.