a99kitten's Musings

I blog about a WHOLE LOT of stuff :)

And I don’t mean in the markets! (but yes that too)

I let Smokey choose our route every morning. This morning, we went straight up my street on the way to the trails. First, we came across a wild puppy. Same puppy we met before – Chase. He 100% spaz. Watching the teenaged girl trying to wrangle him was pretty funny. He was off-leash and kept following us to play with Smokey so I stopped until she could go grab his leash.

Not 10 seconds after she got the leash on him, I see a large critter further up the street (I live on a giant slope up and he was at the very top.) At first I thought to myself “what a huge dog – where is his person?” He was just hanging out in the middle of the street. Then I saw another critter come out and the bigger critter bat him away. That’s when I realized it was a bear and coyote!

The teenaged girl freaked out a bit – mostly because she just realized that she had her out of control puppy off-leash not 30 seconds prior and what could have happened. She turned around and went home.

Of course I had to keep going! By now Smokey was pulling because he wanted to go take over this pack and make them his minions! But I kept him on short leash.

As we were getting closer, I see another coyote shoot out from a driveway and the bear swatted again. He was clearly not interested in sharing his booty. Then he moved across the street towards the bushes and trees and grabbed his garbage bag and went down into the bushes. And the coyotes followed. By the time I got up there, I saw the bear box that the garbage came from.

Little piece of wood across doors to keep out bears. LOL

Little piece of wood across doors to keep out bears. LOL

Full time residents used to be able to put their garbage out in the AM of garbage day but any 2nd home owners or rentals HAD to have a bear box. This was so no garbage was left out very long to attract bears. Two problems with this 1) people want to have cute wooden ones that match their homes. Sure – they look much cuter than the metal ones. But thinking that a little wood door will keep out a bear if he smells something yummy is ridiculous. It’s now a building rule around here for all new houses built that you have to install a metal bear box no matter what – full time or part time resident. And if you replace your bear box, it has to be metal. Not sure the bears like those rules :) And 2) Bears are very smart and know the garbage day schedule. They get the locals AM garbage gifts before the garbage trucks come through.

Anyway, I could see the bear down in the bushes going through the garbage bag. He was BIG. And a light tannish brown color. Of course I wanted to hug him :) But I was obviously not going to try and get closer and he was clearly going to stay hidden in the bushes going through his treasure, so no pics :( Smokey and I watched him for a few minutes but then moved on. Didn’t need him thinking we wanted his booty and have him charge up the hill. He was only about 8 feet away and pretty darn sure he was faster than me!

But I saw him! And he was awesome!! Good way to start the day :) First bear I’ve seen since last 4th of July and only 3rd bear ever. Considering I live here full time now and hike EVERY DAY in the woods, that’s a low success rate in my opinion. I need to do better ;)

A man wrote a letter to a small hotel in a Midwest town he planned to visit on his vacation. He wrote: “I would very much like to bring my dog with me. He is well-groomed and very well behaved. Would you be willing to permit me to keep him in my room with me at night?”

An immediate reply came from the hotel owner, who wrote:

SIR: “I’ve been operating this hotel for many years. In all that time, I’ve never had a dog steal towels, bedclothes, silverware, or pictures off the walls. I’ve never had to evict a dog in the middle of the night for being drunk and disorderly. And I’ve never had a dog run out on a hotel bill.

Yes, indeed, your dog is welcome at my hotel. And, if your dog will vouch for you, you’re welcome to stay here, too.”



This is the painting I bought the other night.

The restaurant we went to for dinner had a bunch of bear paintings displayed all around. I assumed from a local school. We asked the waitress and sure enough, the elementary school’s 3rd/4th grade art class.

I kept going back to this one because the Momma bear face has the same “hmph” expression Angelus gets when he is annoyed. :)

$20 cash and I have some original art that I like :) Now I just need to frame it & figure out where to hang it in the new house.

I’m all for supporting artistic endeavors. Just not enforced support through tax dollars. THAT I do not support.


Comic Con Day 4! Oh wait…I didn’t go. I was sad when I left the hotel. Kinda like when football season is over. Mopey-face.

When I first saw the schedule for this year’s SDCC I saw that, as usual, there wasn’t much on Sunday in terms of panels that I cared about. I would have loved to see the SyFy Merlin panel but if there was a day to take off, this was it. Normally Sunday is my “floor day” after using the other days for mostly panels. Of course, I also used to go to Preview Night for floor time before it became a frackin’ nightmare to try and get a pass. #dontgetmestarted

So instead of staying around SDCC, I made a reservation at the California Wolf Sanctuary. I have been donating to this organization for a number of years but have never actually visited. So since the Monday tours were all booked, I booked a tour for Sunday. Had to be there at 9:30 and they are about 1.5 hours away so it was another early morning of getting ready, packing, checking out and sitting. But instead of in line or in panels, it was in a car.

Got up there on time. And wow. I can not think of enough good things to say about this experience. Was pure awesome sauce. The tour was for about 30 people-ish? A short in-room presentation about the history of wolves, hunting and their endangered status and where the packs are now that have been re-introduced. The guide was much, much more politically correct than I would have been. Basically – humans suck. We almost obliterated this species because man didn’t want first tier predators around. I hate most humans. Oh…and humans still hunt them. And still want them obliterated. And spend a lot of lobby money to get them off the endangered species list so they can hunt them. Even after there is scientific proof that with the wolves back in the eco system, all of nature actually thrives. But hunters don’t want to hear that. Yeah…humans generally suck.

Another thing we learned: a grey wolf has 1500 lbs (psi i believe is the measurement) of bite pressure. A pit bull or German Shepherd has 700. So…that wolf is ripping your arm out of your socket when they lose wookiee-style!

OH! And there was actually a species of direwolves back in the day! And they were HUGE! So they are not just a fantasy creature made up by George R. Martin in the Game of Thrones. Team Direwolf!!!

Anyway – after that short in room presentation, we went out to the Alaskan Grey Wolf area. But none were out. Sleepy time in the hot weather I guess. So they took us over to the Mexican wolf area. This sanctuary is a big part of the Federal project to re-introduce Mexican wolves to the wild. So they have some that are not part of the tour so that they don’t get used to humans. But they have 3 that will probably not be re-introduced to the wild and that are on occasion shown on tour.

They are 3 girls. So pretty. Because of their coloring and their smaller size (compared to the Alaskan Grey wolf) they are sometimes mistaken for coyotes. They really just look like brown Storms!

They were walking around a lot, marking the fence (which they do my rubbing on it or chewing at it), or rolling around in the dirt. So husky like! The guide was telling us a story about how because they might still be reintroduced , they don’t get the same food as the Alaskan wolves. They get more kibble than meat unless it’s meat they would hunt in the wild such as deer or rabbit. Someone asked about squirrel. He said the wolves generally don’t eat the ground squirrels or crows but they will catch them and play with them to “get their squeaker out” and then they are done with them. O.M.G. – HOW HUSKY-LIKE!!!

He said one of the other females is older and has medical (renal) issues. So she is on a very low-protein diet. But apparently she gets sick of the kibble so she takes it and spreads it out so the crows come and try and eat it and then grabs one and eats it! What a smart buddy ☺

He had funny stories about the wolves and we got some good pics. I wished I had a good camera and not just my iPhone. But oh well. Then we saw that the Alaskan wolves come out so we got to go back to see them. Wow – the first male we saw is HUGE. Huge like Angelus looks like a baby compared to him. (Angelus strongly disagrees with this comparison.) In this area they had 2 females and 2 males. They had other fenced off sections with other packs, a mom and pups, another female who kept getting into fights to try and be alpha. But they were not on tour.

We hung out and waited for the Alaskans and then the 2 females came out. They feed them raw chickens and turkey (but like the kind you get at the store, not feathered or anything), and other stuff I won’t go into because while I understand the Circle of Life, I never like seeing it.

We got to see 1 of the females really close and she was pretty funny – she would stretch for us, yawn, try and catch flies. She seemed very bored by us all ☺ The male went over and found a shady spot and stretched and then laid down like Angelus does when he is done with me and wants to lie down and not be bothered.

We got to hang out for a long time watching them, taking pictures, asking questions. The guide was great. Never felt rushed at all. And it really became clear that wolves are just feral huskies ;)

Oh! And they have the bumper sticker that I saw a long time ago and want so badly! “Little Red Riding Hood Lied” It was stuck to something and not for sale (it was made by Defenders of Wildlife years ago and they told me it was sold out and they never remade them.) I am SO getting back to my project of making this for me ☺

Basically, this tour strengthened my resolve to keep sending my donations to them and this cause. For years and years and years I have only donated to animal /wildlife causes. Mostly to Defenders of Wildlife, Best Friends Animal Sanctuary and here. My only human donation in forever was for 9/11. I will continue this and increase it. The damage humans have done and continue to do to this planet and its animal life is disgusting.

Without the ecosystem they help maintain and keep in good health, all of the starving children in Africa, landmine victims in Bosnia, the fight for gay marriage, the fight against gay marriage, human tsunami/earthquake/volcano victims in Haiti/Japan/Chili/Indonesia/Philippines/wherever and the many walks, runs, trots and bracelets to find cures for every disease under the sun, moon and stars will mean nothing in the end unless you want a gray, sterile Blade Runner world. Not to say I won’t donate elsewhere too, but it will always 100% to animals. Period.

If you have a chance to ever visit, I strongly recommend it. Private tours book up well in advance (that’s my next trip!!!) and winter tours book up early too because many people like to see the wolves in the snow (it snows up there a few times a winter.)


We drove back through the town of Julian which is an old gold mining town. Very cute. Saw 2 coyotes and 1 wild turkey on the drive back! Stopped at a vista in the National Forest (you drive through it) and you look out over a canyon named Storm! Canyon (ok, I added that exclamation point!) Stormy wants to know why he wasn’t there too!

Then got back into civilization and saw Captain America which was GREAT. Plus got trailers for John Carter (of Mars) staring Taylor Kitsch (who looks delicious in it) and the new Mission Impossible movie which looks AWESOME! Oh – and if you have not seen Captain America yet but plan to – stay till the credits are OVER. I have friends who didn’t – doh! Avengers Assemble…in July 2012!!! So even though I didn’t spend anytime at Comic Con today, I kept the Con spirit alive by geeking out anyway on both wolves and superheroes.

Storm can TOTALLY do a duet with Mishka!!! He is a great singer too!

I need to get my new iPhone 4 so I can video Stormy when he sings :)

An atheist was walking through the woods.

‘What majestic trees!’
‘What powerful rivers!’
‘What beautiful animals!’
He said to himself.

As he was walking alongside the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him.

He turned to look. He saw a 7-foot grizzly bear charge towards him!

He ran as fast as he could up the path. He looked over his shoulder & saw that the bear was closing in on him. He looked over his shoulder again, & the bear was even closer.

He tripped & fell on the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up but saw that the bear was right on top of him, reaching for him with his left paw & raising his right paw to strike him.

At that instant moment, the Atheist cried out ‘Oh my God!’

Time stopped.
The bear froze.
The forest was silent.

As a bright light shone upon the man, a voice came out of the sky.

‘You deny my existence for all these years, teach others I don’t exist and even credit creation to cosmic accident. Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer?’

The atheist looked directly into the light, and said: ‘It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly ask you to treat me as a Christian now, but perhaps you could make the BEAR a Christian?’

‘Very well’, said the voice.

The light went out. The sounds of the forest resumed. And the bear dropped his right paw, brought both paws together, bowed his head & spoke:

‘Lord bless this food, which I am about to receive from Thy bounty through Christ our Lord, Amen.’

Hehehehehe….this cute bear face reminds me of Angelus :)

I really hate when people use the term “throwing someone to the wolves” when referring to how someone wasn’t cared for properly, or how they would be on their own to fend for themselves in a harsh situation, or stuff like that.

Wolf packs actually care very much for their pack mates. Pups are cared for by not only the mother but the father and other pack mates.

So what people actually should be saying is throwing someone to the homo sapiens because you are much more likely to get a crappy parent/family/boss/etc from the humanoid world than from the Canis lupus one….

Would rather be raised by...

(this was oddly sent to me by a friend who a bacon-LOVER.)


This Dachshund is fostering this little guy for another mom who couldn’t take care of him. He had his eyes closed, but now they are open. He is just a little bigger than her other pups.

She loves this little guy as much as the other puppies and she is nursing him back to health. He is the cleanest pig-uppy ever because she licks him all the time.


Pink with Dachsund Mom


Now that’s damn funny :)

I’m very much against shock collars for dogs. But for douchebags…..