I wanted to write a post today but now that I am here I keep getting distracted by Twitter. It is shocking how fast one incorporates social media into their lives. For a self-confessed gamer and technophile I had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the scary, wide world of socializing online. The irony here is not lost on me. For a venture such as this walk though social media is not only a good idea, it is a must. It is key. I have found over the months though that I scream and kick much less now if at all. I think I rather enjoy it to be honest. And that is it I am afraid… my well today is very shallow but one must know their limitations. Trying to force a creative process results in abominations. So here are some random pictures I have taken over the years.
I can now exhale. There was a decent chance the walk would have to be pushed back due to Elika’s broken ankle. Yesterday brought news that her recovery time is much better than expected so March 10this still a go and just two months away. The anticipation is driving me a bit batty.
So, happy new year! I must admit I have never placed much stock in the transition of one year to the next. I was doing dishes when the clock struck midnight. I did manage to give a heartfelt “woo!” while scrubbing a plate of buffalo chicken dip. I wish I could be as excited as those people in Times Square. They seem a jolly lot. And even if I do not celebrate the progression of a calendar, this is the year I attempt to walk across the country.
I am asked two questions a lot. Why are you doing this? My short answer is what I say on my home page. I talk about Tolkien and self-discovery. That is true, but in my heart I know it to be a simple truth. There is a complex personal truth to that question that I have not shared. It is difficult to verbalize. I am not even sure how to say it other than I am doing this for me. I need to do this for myself. Maybe one day I will find a voice that allows me to better explain it.
Which brings me to the second question and the title of this post. What if I fail? I have given this question too much thought and yet it still lingers in my head nagging at me. I of course do not wish to fail and have no intention of doing so, but it is a possibility. I think it depends on the nature of the failure. If I am injured and forced to stop, I can accept that although the disappointment would be crushing. It would be the same if some emergency drew me back home. After all, these two scenarios do not rule out making another attempt.
Failure due to difficulty is not an option. After all, that is the point, isn’t it? I am not attempting this because it is easy. I cannot stop due to a string of bad luck or sore muscles or the desire to lay down in my own bed. I will guard myself against such a failure fiercely. I hope that makes sense to you. But look what I have discovered already about myself! I say I want self-discovery on this walk and it seems I am already getting it, and I have yet to take my first step.
Understanding a stupid cat.
Usually I write about the walk or gaming. If I do not the topic rarely strays from something at least vaguely related. Today however, for Christmas, I present for your consideration a short essay on Ford “Chubbyfats” Prefect.
Webster’s defines the word stupid as “slow of mind : obtuse. Given to unintelligent decisions or acts.” Ford fits these parameters. One might also use the word idiot. Some good synonyms of idiot are Airhead, half-wit, prat, nimrod, ninny, fathead (very applicable), and my personal favorite… nincompoop. Ford is all these things. Let us break it down.
Ford’s Nemesis: The water dish.
I cannot imagine the dichotomy of mind my poor cat must suffer when going to take a drink. He needs water to live, yet the water dish is a dark, evil place that must be avoided lest Ford perish. On a daily basis the routine goes like this… Ford sits in the middle of the kitchen and glares at the water bowl. This will last approximately five minutes. Ford will take a few careful steps towards the bowl, stop, and glare some more. Ford makes it to the water bowl and sniffs carefully. Ford gingerly begins to drink. Something on Ford’s face gets wet, most likely his mouth. Ford strikes the water dish, splashing water up getting him wetter. Ford hisses and strikes harder. Ford gets splashed by copious amounts of water. Ford goes for the kill, ears back, hissing and unleashing a flurry of attacks. Ford runs away wet where he cleans himself thus getting the water he set out to get in the first place.
Ford’s Driving Motivation: Food.
On a base level food is the driving motivation for all life on this planet. Ford takes this very seriously, to the detriment of all other motivations. There is only the next meal and when food is not present he often will sit and lick his empty food dish which I can only extrapolate as his “pretending to eat.” When it is actually time to eat his fragile little brain snaps with excitement and he waddles around wailing at the top of his lungs. He must then be guarded by either myself or my wife for Ford views all food as his and once he has scarfed down his portion he will torpedo his poor brother with his massive girth, head down like a battering ram and begin to greedily devour his brother’s meal.
Ford’s bed: MY bed.
When Ford is not pretending to eat or fighting his water dish he is on the his bed. I will admit that possession is 9/10ths of the law. I am in the bed 1/3rd, roughly, of my time. Ford is in the bed 9.85/10ths of his time. This would be fine if it did not render the cat completely anti-social. To break him of this we have taken to locking him out of the room during the day which destroys his concept of reality. He wanders, lost until he collapses exhausted on a chair or perhaps the couch. If you go and open the bedroom door he will run down the hallway yelling and attempt to gain entry. He is not trying to hide… he just wants on his bed.
We end with a few of Ford’s stranger more idiotic tendencies. He will often sit with his nose to the wall staring at it. After a minute or two he will paw at the wall. This is usually at 3am. Ford will play when engaged for about thirty seconds until he realizes he has been tricked into moving at a rate which approaches “exercise,” then he will stop. Ford has fallen out of windows… twice. One the first occasion he fell out of one window then tried to jump back into the other window which was closed. As an aside, cats bounce off closed windows. Ford tries to clean his brother always to the result of getting his butt kicked. His brother will tolerate the licking for a few minutes and then beat Ford.
Ford is without a doubt the dumbest animal I have ever had the pleasure of sharing my life with, and I have had many. He may be a remarkably stupid cat, but he is my cat, and his buffoonery adds to his charm. He is also a snuggler and after a long day when I climb into my…err..his bed and he flubs down under my arm and nuzzles and purrs I think to myself, “Oh alright… I suppose you are not that bad after all.”
Surgery 2: The Re-Surgery-inating!
This past week has been an adventure of the nefarious variety. My wife with her shattered ankle and emergency surgery suddenly turned into two surgeries. A simple check up to remove her stitches brought to light that one of the screws put into her bones “missed the mark.” So she had a screw loose! Ha! Haha!… /facepalm. So she had surgery again yesterday and we are once again back to step one.
Now that is the worst of it of course, but here is a short list of everything that broke this week.
My wife’s laptop, the printer, my Xbox controller, the Soda Stream, The Microwave and my sanity.
I am very thankful that even with the unexpected second surgery that Elika is going to be Ok. And everything on that list is only a thing and can be replaced… even sanity. I think they sell sanity near the sewing supplies at Wal-Mart.
So that whole back to basics speech I gave fell apart. So I shall pick myself up, dust myself off and go for a walk…to Wal-Mart…to buy some sanity… and a nice crocheting kit.