And mighty glad to be here, thank you very much.
Jeanne Wagner, you are so right on (see Comments)–I CANNOT bear any of the Animal Cop shows, either, even though I have the highest respect for the work those people do. Thank God for them, because they provide a truly noble service. I also cannot endure the bleak commercials run by the animal protection groups (I once loved Willie Nelson’s “Always on My Mind”, but no more, and Sarah McLaughlin’s music is spoiled for me, too), and have been known to run from the room, hands over my ears and humming loudly, if one comes on TV—the remote isn’t always handy and it happens suddenly, a sort of emotional ambush–and then I hide out until I know it’s over. Yes, of course, I understand the point of those commercials, but I think the groups involved would be better off showing POSITIVE things–show me an adopted pet leaving the shelter with its new family, for instance. Show me what GOOD my donations can do, for pity’s sake. After all, people who are callous and indifferent to animals aren’t likely to be moved to kindness and generosity by those scenarios anyway, because they are–wait for it–callous and indifferent. No, it’s those of us who adore critters, and want the best possible homes and lives for every single one of them, who are most affected by such images. The whole experience usually leaves me feeling hi-jacked, and when I feel that way, I dig in my Lael-Bleecker heels. At that point, I am done.
Don’t get me wrong–I DO contribute, but my contributions go mainly to two of our local shelters–Spokanimal and Paws. I’m a great believer in supporting good causes in my own community before giving to national charities. Seems to me that we ought to sweep our own doorsteps first, look after our own homeless, be they two or four-legged, right here in our own cities and towns. If everybody did that, this would be a kinder and much better world.
And there you have my admittedly unsolicited two-cents worth.
I should have said it sooner–don’t get me started.
The weekend was peaceful and quiet–I read, made some artist trading cards*, downloaded and then watched an art video featuring a wonderful Aussie artist named Jane Davenport, (“Fanciful Faces”, Interweave.com) and learned a lot. I love this website, because I can either order the physical DVD or simply download the program onto my mini iPad–guess which I prefer, impatient as I am. I’m working on an atc* swap now based on “Horton Hears a Who”, the Dr. Seuss classic. After a lot of practice, I managed to draw a passable Horton. I’d forgotten how clever and entertaining the story was, and the poignancy of the message: everybody matters, ‘no matter how small’.
My personal favorite Dr. Seuss quote is from “Oh, the Places You’ll Go”, a book my mother gave me only a few years ago:
“Oh, the places you’ll go, and the people you’ll meet, with your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet!”
Thanks, Mom, for that book and about a million others.
So, here I am, in my office chair, ready to write. The sky is overcast and the weather is cool–just makes things cozy, a split-pea soup kind of day. Bernice is back from her barn adventures with Jenni and curled up in her little bed near my desk to rest up for the next round, this afternoon. I can see a passing horse once in a while, out there in the pasture, and I have a story to tell.
A cowgirl can’t ask for more than that.