Monday, October 25, 2004

Yes, Wiglaf and Chalantly need to have their pizza and go to bed

I swung by Kro-GRR tonight after a meet-and-greet for Rice's new president. I ran out of milk this morning, plus I needed some fruit and frozen delights for lunch this week. (I also bought a turkey, but that's neither here nor there.) I was standing in the typically long check-out line, idly flipping through Time and observing that there are far too few blue states on the map of the U.S. right now. I noticed a couple behind me. The woman was in her early forties, holding a squash of some sort, bossing around a man of the same age holding an 8-oz. package of sliced mushrooms. They were trying to find a shorter line, but in that store it's like looking for a polar bear in a blizzard.

"Is that all you have?" I asked. "Would you like to go ahead of me?"
The man looked surprised. "Oh, that's just so nice of you. Are you sure?"
"Oh, yeah, no problem. Plenty of people have done it for me before. Go ahead." I waved them ahead of me with the magazine.
"Well, that is just so sweet," the woman said. "Especially since your children are probably waiting at home for you."

I had to mentally check myself to keep my jaw from dropping on the spot.

I don't have kids! Do I look like I have kids? I'm 23 years old, and I look it. I had my hair up tonight and I was wearing slacks, so maybe you could add a couple of years at most, but I'm certainly not at that age where people can assume that I have children. Am I?

I don't ever even want to have children. But I realize there will come a point when people may just take as given that I have, as Tex put it earlier today, "cursed the earth with [my] seed." I just didn't realize that point was now. Maybe I need to get some hipper clothing, something like the screaming yellow translucent blouse and black mini-skirt worn by the med student trolling for dates at the alumni gathering I attended tonight. Evidently my tan slacks and maroon sleeveless shirt aren't getting it done.

Or maybe it was the fact that I had a frozen pizza and multiple half-gallons of milk in my cart, I don't know. I don't have any idea what it was that made this woman assume that I had children. I smiled at her and said in a lame, "Yes, my non-existent children. My cats."

I think I should probably just be glad she didn't ask when the baby was due.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Horseshoes and Handgrenades

I don't think anybody can claim that the Astros didn't exceed expectations this season. Clinging to .500 by the very tips of their gloves in July, falling seven games back in the National League wild card race, and then coming within inches of winning the National League pennant. And they did it all with a certain sort of "Oh, is that us? Well, I'll be" panache that had their fans both charmed and terrified. It was a hell of a run.

And while the Astros' death in the sixth inning tonight was painful, and not only because we missed out on the World Series (bye-bye Beltran), it wasn't tragic. I thought it was. In fact, I was going to write a whole blog about how the Astros won't be able to put together a team like this for ten years and we're all doomed yadda yadda.

But here's the thing.

Yes, Beltran's going away. He's going to the Yankees, where he will get paid $25 million a season to stare at Derek Jeter's ass, encased as it is in his unusually tight pants. It's a crying shame, but it does free up $9,000,000 for Astros owner Drayton McLane to play with. And, oh, Drayton. Drayton, Drayton, Drayton.

Get some middle relief pitching, or I'm going to kill you.

You can get six decent relievers for $9,000,000, and with Lights Out Lidge, we don't need nearly that many. Especially considering how many we have to give away. We can keep Wheeler, too, maybe Qualls. Everybody else: grab your jock strap and get going.

So relief pitching's set. Starting pitching's more than set. Oswalt will be back, Clemens looks good to go, Pettitte and Miller will be healed, and Backe has come into his own. That's the best five-man rotation in the majors. Even if Clemens goes away, it'll still be the best.

The weakness, of course, is the top of our order. Biggio and Bagwell are aging, and it ain't pretty. Worst case scenario, though, Biggio gets replaced by a solid Jason Lane, and Bagwell's arm blows and we get to move Lance Berkman to first base, where, God knows, he should be anyway. The boy does the best he can in right field, but it's like watching George Bush trying to use multi-syllabic words. Painful and unnatural. Wayne Graham knew it. He didn't call Berkman the worst outfielder he'd ever seen for nothing.

So we need to pick up someone for center field, and maybe get a catcher who's not just an Ivy-league pretty boy. (Hey, I like Ausmus, but he needs to be splitting time with some sort of slugging machine. Brains and brawn, it's a delicate balance.) That'd really be more than necessary, though. If we can just get middle relief, I think we'd have a scrappy squad who, while not setting any records for most runs in a season, would be competetive the whole year.

And in Houston, that's all we need for lift-off.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

If you still care

The baby's name is Lyra, after a character in a book I read and loved while in Austria.

I promise my next post will be non-cat related.
How to name your cat

Erin: Maeve?
Tex: too many chicks
Erin: ?
Tex: is maeve something other than a band?
Erin: Celtic goddess of song?
Tex: ah
Erin: Eulalie.
Tex: Shantasta
Erin: Good one.
Erin: Fiona?
Tex: i thought we were making up words. i realize now that we're going though potential cat names
Tex: Scarnak
Erin: Wait, did you think we were making up words when we did Maeve?
Erin: And Scarnak is your suggestion?
Tex: right on all counts
Erin: Is [your significantly more with-it girlfriend] around or going to be taking a break any time soon? I need someone more helpful.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Bringing Up Baby: Day One

I have my kitten now. She's tiny and adorable and wreaking havoc already.

She of course has no name yet, so I've been calling her "the baby" all night. The baby is curious, sniffing everything she can get her nose in proximity to. She seems to like shoes and anything that Regan plays with frequently. She does not, however, like me. I'm not sure if it's because I'm so big and scary, or if she's annoyed with humans in general for subjecting her to surgery (she was spayed on Saturday).

The baby likes to cry for no apparent reason, which makes Regan come out from under the bed and hiss at her. Amazingly, neither has taken a swipe. In fact, the baby seems entirely unbothered by Regan. It's only me she hates. Of course, I'm mildly obsessing about it, worried that she'll never like me and we'll be stuck together for the next twenty years in, at best in mild disdain, at worst in seething hatred. I'm neurotic like that.

In the meantime, I've locked the baby in the bathroom, where I can stop worrying about her, Regan can hiss at her through the door, and she can frolick in the bathtub and hide behind the toilet when I come in. I don't know how long she'll have to stay there—another couple of days at least, probably, by which time she'll have hopefully stopped hating me and Regan will have stopped hating her, and I'll have stopped freaking out about both of them.

Monday, October 04, 2004

No cat for you

Quick update: I wasn't able to pick up Baby X this afternoon because the Houston SPCA had a gas leak. The officers who were blocking off the road seemed supremely unconcerned, so I choose to believe that nothing's really wrong and they're just being overcautious.

I guess I have 24 more hours to think of a name.
It's a girl! And a cat!

My household increased its membership by 50% this weekend, if you go by pure numbers and not something weird like mass. If you go by mass, my household increased its membership by like, 0.4%.

I adopted a kitten on Saturday.

She is a tiny girl, only eight weeks old and easily small enough to hold in one hand, although much too squirmy for that. She's a lilac-point Siamese, which, for those of you who don't know Siamese, means her tail, paws, ears and nose are a dusky grey. The rest is white, and she has ice-blue eyes.

I don't know what to name my new baby, but I do know that she comes home from her surgery today and that I will spend the night protecting her from Regan, my six-year-old Alpha female who is destined to teach the baby bad habits. So if you have a name suggestion (preferrably something that kind of goes with Regan and isn't a subsistence crop), give me a suggestion.

In the meantime, I'll be trying to figure out how to keep this cat from breaking the blinds like my other one does.

Blog Archive