A blue-eyed, red-furred view of the world!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Football and dogfighting

mr_ed:  Welcome to Tucker Talks Back!, a time and space for news, views, and woos. I'm Mister Ed, the co-host, and with me here is the fur-bottomed Tucker-plucker, relaxing and enjoying the absence of foster dogs. Gremlin, the senior lady of the house, says woof! too.

I haven't brought up Michael Vick before, but now I'm going to, just a little, because I just came across another big dogfighting investigation.

We interrupt this blog for an important announcement!

Ladies, do you know any men you'd call a pig (definition 5.)?

Could he use an attitude adjustment when it comes to animals?

Have we got the gift idea for you!

Five young women falling out of their scanty clothing tell the world If you're fighting dogs you're a loser!!! in this full-color poster available now for the low, low price of only $10 plus shipping and handling of $3!

And remember! All proceeds go to help the kitties and doggies! Order now!


Back to Michael Vick. I'm disappointed that the federal grand jury's indictment of Vick listed 15 "Overt Acts" (each of them a number of separate actions) and the result was a plea to only one count (along with agreement to a more expansive "Summary of Facts").

I'm disappointed that the Virginia grand jury came through with only two charges, increasing the chance that he'll slide with a "double-jeopardy" defense. And even if found guilty, the state sentence (oops ... that should be "the Commonwealth sentence") might be served at the same time as the federal, which the government (but not animal-welfare groups) is recommending to be 12 to 18 months.

I'm disappointed that Vick had a "hot UA" - a urinalysis that tested positive for marijuana.

No really, I am. What a terrible role model! Even in communities that accept dogfighting as a legitimate and enjoyable sport, who wants their kids to look up to a dumbhead who's evidently headed down the same road as Mike Tyson and OJ Simpson to a life of one stupid mistake after another?


A Public Service Announcement brought to you by the writers of this blog.

Is this the first you've heard of dogfighting? Is it really bad? Is it confined to rednecks, rappers, and recidivist athletes?

An animal-welfare organization has the answers you need. Visit one today.


And we're back. Now, some people may be hearing about dog fighting for the first time. But Michael Vick certainly isn't the first American pro athlete to apparently, allegedly, or admittedly be involved in this "sport." There's "a 'subculture' of dogfighting among professional athletes," says a representative of the Humane Society.

And it's not just in the U.S. I hadn't heard about this other investigation before - seems like it would have been on itchmo - but the BBC spent 17 months investigating, and they reported at the end of August that they'd found 15 operations or "gangs."

(Now that I'm actually spending a few hours tracking down this story, I see it's been on ESPN since August 30.)

Ironically, the undercover film exposed a star of Irish football - what the rest of the world calls football, anyway, and we call soccer. He denies dogfighting completely. In April he pled guilty to having a pit bull (a banned breed) and unlicensed dogs, and he was banned from owning a dog for five years. But on film he said he had 15, so he may be up for violating the previous court order, too.
Dublin is an international backdoor for fighting dogs from all over Europe, according to the Dublin Society for the Protection of Animals, who say illegal dog fights are thriving in Dublin and other towns in the Republic and the north.

A shocking report by the BBC Spotlight programme on pit bull fighting in Ireland and Europe, broadcast on Thursday night, also revealed how shamed Tyrone gaelic footballer, Gerard Cavlan, was part of a highly organised pan European dogfighting network....

"Regrettably, it is almost impossible until the necessary intelligence is received to break these rings, it can be almost impossible to bring the perpetrators to justice; the individuals who operate these fighting rings are ruthless and dangerous.

"We know that dogs in Dublin are involved from the cases of pit bulls brought into our shelter by our inspectors that have serious cuts, lacerations and injuries," said Jimmy Cahill, manager of the DSPCA.

-- independent.ie

A Public Service Announcement brought to you by the writers of this blog.

Cruelty to animals and domestic abuse are often linked. Send Vick a message ... send all animal abusers a message. Because No Animals Were Harmed® is just the beginning.


We're outta space and time. Peace and long life, and may you Live long and prosper!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Catching up on comments

Tucker:  Okay, enough games for a while.

Maddox, yes. Mystique found a family that wanted her on Saturday. H.A. says she needs training. And that's what they want to do. Good match, good riddance! It's a trial adoption. For two weeks. But H.A. is certain that they will keep the annoying puppy. Thank dog!

My nemesis, der Jägermeister, was trial-adopted a week ago. The H.A. wasn't sure that one would stick. But it looks good so far. The woman wanted a friend for her Lila. She (the four-legged one) is mostly Treeing Walker Coonhound with longer legs. So his tallness is okay.

A few days after she (the two-legged one) took him, she came home from work and had a bad surprise. Jaeger had pulled down the blinds at one window. Knocked out the screen. Opened the window enough to jump out. "Oh," she thought, "no!"

Then she saw he had found some way to get in the back yard with Lila. The woman was so thrilled that he wanted to be with her dog that she didn't care about the destruction. Or what he took out of the bathroom trash. Sometimes Sibes get that lucky!

Amber, does anyone like mystery books there? H.A. just read one called A Dog About Town. A Labrador Retriever reads, understands conversations, and spells messages with Alpha-Bits. Now that's cerebral! And he solves murders.

Holly, yes. There's something wrong with the What kind of pet would you be? quiz. Maybe northern breeds' personalities are less "doggy" than other breeds'. And some goofus thinks that makes us cats.  ::hisss::  Heh.  ::big husky grin::

In college the Human Assistant met a beautiful young woman. (As Wikipedia points out, "Not to be confused with Lady.") Blonde and nordic. They had one date. Then she said that she wasn't the cold, reserved northlander that her appearance suggested. She grew up in Brazil. She was a hot-blooded Latin American. So don't bother to ask her out again.

He he was being polite. He went home thinking, "Give me a chance!  I could learn!" A story from Lake Wobegon.

Are you going to paint your nails?

Monday, September 24, 2007

Very silly games

Tucker:  Human Assistant decided to do grooming on Sunday. That's okay. He can groom himself all he wants. But why bother the dogs?

This was my first summer here. I didn't blow my coat, and H.A. is kinda lazy. So now I need lots of raking. Probably not 10 hours of it, like he threatened. I gave in and turned on my side. He said I was almost as good about it as the Poodles in Laura Berenson's mysteries.

I don't want to be like a Poodle! People say they're really smart. That means they really obey people. Siberian Huskies are smart! So smart that we hide it from people.

But H.A. was extra happy with my quiet lying there. He said I must have inspired Gremlin to be good too. Usually she tries to wander off while he's raking her. She's no Poodle!

At least H.A. didn't paint our toenails. I thought he might try it when he saw this very silly game at blogthings. I had him change "guy" to "date" in the answer.

Your toe(nail)s should be BLUE
You're a little out there, but that means you take dates to a place that's out of this world!

Your ideal date:  Zany, hilarious, and totally unpredictable.

Stay away from:  Anyone who has to get up for work in the morning

Tucker:  H.A. says he is supposed to paint his nails white. Which is okay because he wears boots most of the time for ankle support. Gremlin's are supposed to be dark red. Here's another:

You Are Rowlf the Dog
Mellow and serious, you enjoy time alone cultivating your talents.

You're a cool dog, and you always present a relaxed vibe.

A talented pianist, you can play almost anything - especially songs by Beethoven.

"My bark is worse than my bite, and my piano playing beats 'em both."

Tucker:  H.A. was also Rowlf. Gremlin was Kermit. Well, maybe.

You Are Navy Blue
You're a true adventurer. You constantly find yourself drawn to new experiences, people, and places.

Sometimes you feel quite scattered and bored. If something exciting isn't going on, you feel a bit lost.

Tucker:  The guy is indigo, Gremlin is royal blue.

What strange silliness! It's much more fun to dig in the yard. Or chase squirrels. Ride in the car. Stuff like that.

I don't even want to talk about the quiz, What kind of pet would you be?  I changed my answers five times and always got, "You Would Be a Pet Cat."  At least with What's your ideal pet? I got, "Your Ideal Pet is a Big Dog."  Darned tootin'!  Whose isn't?

Sunday, September 23, 2007

More on the athlete game

Tucker:  The click-a-number looks different.
mr_ed:  I made the numbers go across instead of up and down.
Tucker:  Why?
mr_ed:  It's more natural unless you're reading the blog in Chinese or Hebrew or something.
Tucker:  So why do it the first way?
mr_ed:  I made the table in a spreadsheet, and there it's more usual for numbers to go down when they go up.
Tucker:  Sure. How did you change it?
mr_ed:  With a spreadsheet.
Tucker:  Then why didn't you do it right the first time?
mr_ed:  Look! Mystique left a treat!
Tucker:  Bey fou buh hoss.  ::crunch crunch crunch crunch::
mr_ed:  Yes, they found good ol' Secretariat.
Tucker:  ::lap, lap, lap    lap, lap, lap    lap, lap, lap::
mr_ed:  There should have been some lead dogs from Iditarod or Yukon Quest.
Tucker:  Another treat?
mr_ed:  Should I tell people that the auto racers are in the 40s line?
Tucker:  No. Another treat.
mr_ed:  You sure look sleepy. Looking at you makes me sleepy!
Tucker:  ::snort::
mr_ed:  G'night, big boy. And I mean that in the nicest way possible!
Tucker:  ::zzzZZZzzz::

Friday, September 21, 2007

A silly game

Tucker:  The Human Assistant found a website with lots of silly "games." For some of them you answer a few questions. Then it tells you what dinosaur you are. For a few others you put in your name and sex. Then it tells you what your Tibetan name is.

mr_ed:  Those are invented examples, by the way.

Tucker:  Many of these games are about your relationship with men. And not in a dog/human way. Not in a dog/human way that I want to think about.

So the Human Assistant has invented a game about sports. It's a little silly. And you don't have to be a guy to play. You don't even have to be human. It's easy! (Especially compared to what he usually thinks up.)

Here's how it works:
  • 1.  Think of a number less than 100.
    • It has to be a whole number, not a fraction or decimal.
    • It can't be a negative number.
    • It can be 0 or 00.
  • 2.  Click (below) on the link to the number.
  • 3.  See what famous athlete you are!
  • 4.  Some numbers have other athletes you can be instead.


Tucker:  Many thanks to Sports Illustrated for making this game possible! They were playing a kinda silly game themselves when they created the web pages.

mr_ed:  Yeah ... #33?  What were they thinking? That number could only be Sammy Baugh!

One site has him on their "All-Time 11." They put together a football team with only 11 players. (Not 80 or 75 or 53 or even 45 like NFL teams have, just the 11 that can be on the field all at one time.) The 11 could come from any time in professional football. "Slingin' Sammy" is their quarterback.

Baugh was football's first Triple Crown player. In 1943 he led the league in three different categories - passing, punting, and interceptions.  Not interceptions that he threw as a quarterback ... interceptions that he caught!  One of his punting records still stands more than 60 years later!

And he's called the first modern quarterback in the pros. Let's see some basketball player top that kind of career!

Tucker:  But anyway. Have fun with the game!

mr_ed:  P.S.
  • Which one is an animal (four-legged)?
  • Which three are humans but not listed for a career in:
    • baseball,
    • basketball,
    • football, or
    • hockey?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Vehicle tag

Tucker:  Human Assistant says vehicle tag is not the same as bumper cars at the amusement park. (I don't know what he's talking about.)

There is a game going around in dog circles  [as opposed to just dogs going around in circles  -- Human Assistant]  asking what vehicle are you?

The Human Assistant likes Zim's Jeep. He says he had a 1952 CJ-3A that he liked very much. I didn't get to ride in it because he sold it when he couldn't work clutch pedals anymore. Which was before I got here. But he says on the outside it looked very much like this Jeep on the left.
This one in the picture is from World War II. And was made by Ford, not by Willy (whoever that was). The first civilian Jeeps after the war looked almost exactly like this. They were model CJ-2A. The CJ-3A's biggest difference on the outside was a one-piece windshield. And a little vent underneath it.

He says the picture on the right is exactly how the inside of his looked. Under the driver's seat you can see the 10-gallon gas tank. It was easy to take out when he had to patch a leak one time.

Anyway. Zim suggested that I be a Tucker Torpedo. A very cool car! Only made in 1948. But it had three eyes and I don't.

How about a Tucker Sno-Cat? The Human Assistant says it doesn't have anything to do with cats. It's a short word for caterpillar. Like that makes more sense. Wikipedia has pictures of lots of models. I like this 1949 Sno-Cat best.

It would be great to take this to the Iditarod race! Everydoggy could ride inside out of the nasty weather! And you can run on wheels when there isn't enough snow.

The Tucker car company isn't around anymore, but you can visit the Tucker Sno-Cat website.

Now the Human Assistant drives us around in a 1988 Jeep XJ. (Also called a Cherokee.) He says it's driven almost as far as 250 Iditarods. But he didn't drive it as fast as dogs go! That many Iditarods would take around 7 years. Less for the fastest teams. And this Cherokee is almost 20 years old.

So anyway, I will be a Tucker Sno-Cat riding around in a Jeep.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

... You can pick your pets ...

Tucker:  Everydoggy knows this human joke, right?
  • You can pick your nose;
  • You can pick your pets;
  • But you can't pick your pet's nose
Back when I had a new monia the Human Assistant wiped my nose a lot. And the walls. He says I had a ferocious sneeze. And a couple of times I wiped my nose on his jeans.



A family can keep their pet sheep. Montana? California. They live in Dixon with 16,000 other people.

"[N]eighbors in the area have complained about a strong odor coming from the Angelmans’ property."

No ... ummm ... kidding, Sherlock!

"I think we need to do whatever we need to make [the sheep] stay, but please don’t get another sheep,” said Vice Mayor Michael Smith." (I had Human Assistant add the emphasis. It was a nice thing for the man to say.)

A pet camel may have killed a woman. Egypt? Australia.

In one article the police shrug and say maybe. We'll see what the autopsy says. In another article they say probably, "in what police suspect was mating behavior."

This was a month ago. Human Assistant says he hasn't found an article about what the autopsy found.

A week ago a woman found a pet zebra in her driveway. Africa? Oklahoma.

The newspaper story has better pictures. The itchmo re-write has the story's end. The owner said that "he doesn’t know he’s a zebra."

Maybe he thinks he's a Siberian Husky. That could explain why he was wandering. Remember:
  • Always hold onto your Zebrarian Husky's leash!
  • Your Zebrarian Husky must not be able to jump over your fence!
  • Your Zebrarian Husky must not be able to dig under your fence!
  • For Zebrarians: don't leave "a big tongue lick imprint" on the cat's bowl!
  • Also, get lots of treats! It helps for remembering where home is.
Time for me to have some treats! Oh Human Assistant...!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Mystique is still here

Tucker:  You went to the shelter today.
mr_ed:  Yes, mostly to see if there was an application to adopt Mystique. We met Zeus and his mom last Monday, and I really thought they'd apply right away.
Tucker:  Wouldn't you have heard?
mr_ed:  I think so. And there wasn't an application, and nobody could remember one coming in.
Tucker:  Oh, rats.
Mystique trying to play with Tucker mr_ed:  Well ... I got email on Friday from someone else who's interested. MaxFund only takes one application at a time, so tonight I went ahead and answered the email and told her more about Mystique and told her where to find the dogster page.
Tucker:  So maybe something will happen there.
mr_ed:  Yeah, I got an answer right away, actually. We're going to meet in the evening.
Tucker:  That's good.
mr_ed:  Well, shoot. Mystique and Zeus got along together so well.
Tucker:  Is Zeus as big as Jaeger?
mr_ed:  No, almost the same as Mystique. A little shorter, but rounder. If Mystique lost a couple of pounds, which she should do, they'd be the same weight.
Tucker:  Maybe this new person has a dog and just didn't mention it.
mr_ed:  ::sigh::  I hope so. But!
Tucker:  Yes?
mr_ed:  I also got a second email asking about Mystique tonight. They wanted to know the dogster address.
Tucker:  So that's ... ummm ... three chances for her right now.
mr_ed:  Yeah.
Tucker:  What's wrong? She'll be happier somewhere else. So will the carpet.
mr_ed:  I s'pose. Though I think Gremlin is peeing inside, too.
Tucker:  She shut herself in the bathroom today.  Woowoowoo!
mr_ed:  Yeah, poor old gal. I think the thunder was bothering her.
Tucker:  So she meant to do it?
mr_ed:  No, I'm sure she didn't.
Tucker:  I think you need to sleep.
mr_ed:  I guess.
Tucker:  Right after treats!
mr_ed:  I guess.
Tucker:  Did you get more turkey?
mr_ed:  How about ants? Would you like those for a treat?
Tucker:  I would not, could not, in the rain.
Not in the dark. Not on a train.
mr_ed:  All right, turkey it is, then.
Tucker:  Woowoo!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Anniegram's Song

Tucker:  Is it hard to do long anagrams?
mr_ed:  It can be, just using pencil and paper. But the Internet Anagram Server can really help. It can crank out more than 25,000 variations on Siberian Husky in a blink or two of an eye. Some are a little strange, though.
Tucker:  Like what?
mr_ed:  Well, Bruins Yeah Ski is a little odd, but you can turn it into Yeah, bruins ski.
Tucker:  But they don't.
mr_ed:  No. How about Ah, Bruins - yikes! or maybe Bruins! Say "Hike!"?
Tucker:  What are bruins?
mr_ed:  Bears.
Tucker:  I like that last one. If you're mushing along and see bears.
mr_ed:  Yup. Your musher and your team would all want to skedaddle outta there.
Tucker:  Can you do short ones easier?
mr_ed:  Sure. How about Tucker?
Tucker:  Yes!
mr_ed:  If we went for a walk at the University of Colorado, it would be a CU Trek.
Tucker:  More!
mr_ed:  If you like Kelly Ripa, KR - cute! Or if you like Regina King, RK - cute!
Tucker:  Now, Amber!
mr_ed:  If she were a car, she'd be a Beamr.
Tucker:  Ugh.
mr_ed:  If she were on Star Trek, they'd say, Beam 'r!
Tucker:  One more.
mr_ed:  If you wanted her to run into Zim again, Re-bam!
Tucker:  Maybe you should keep trying.
mr_ed:  It can take lots of time - and paper - to find one you like, sometimes. In fact, do you know who John Denver was?
Tucker:  We live in Denver.
mr_ed:  True. John Denver was a folk singer who liked Colorado so much that he changed his name. Anyway, he wrote a song about how much paper it takes to come up with good anagrams.
Tucker:  Nuh uh. That would be a dumb folk song.
mr_ed:  But he did! He called it "Anniegram's Song."
Tucker:  ::snort::
mr_ed:  And it goes something like this:

Anniegram's Song

You fill up my notepad like a month's worth of errands,
Like an office lunch order, like the meeting from heck,
Like an NFL play book, like a map to the boonies,
You fill up my note pad, a new one again!

Sing the chorus!

Come let me puzzle, let me fill up my notepad,
Let me try some misspellings, let me write funny words,
Let me scramble the letters, let me try permutations,
Come let me puzzle, come puzzle my brain.

Let's hear from families!

You fill up my notepad like a big wedding guest list,
Julie's letter to Santa, Billy's tic-tac-toe games,
Like my Uncle Joe's rap sheet, like a list of Dee's cousins,
You fill up my note pad, a new one again!

All together now!

Come let me puzzle, let me fill up my notepad,
Let me try some misspellings, let me write funny words,
Let me scramble the letters, let me try permutations,
Come let me puzzle, come puzzle my brain.

Just the geeks!

You fill up my notepad like a Space Shuttle checklist,
Like a thrust calculation, like the distance to Mars,
Like a circuit board layout, like division in octal,
You fill up my note pad, a new one again!

Final chorus!

Come let me puzzle, let me fill up my notepad,
Let me try some misspellings, let me write funny words,
Let me scramble the letters, let me try permutations,
Come let me puzzle, come puzzle my brain.

You didn't Leave On a Jet Plane, but
thank you Henry John Deutschendorf, Jr.,
wherever your last flight may have taken you!


Tucker:  She ribs, an' I yuk.

Tucker:  Hey! I didn't say to write that! What does it mean?
mr_ed:  That's an anagram for "Siberian Husky" !
Tucker:  That's Anna's grandmother?
mr_ed:  An anagram is when you take the letters that spell one thing and make them spell something else.
Tucker:  Okay, you spelled something. What does it mean?
mr_ed:  That's what you say when that cutie Amber tells a joke and you laugh.
Tucker:  I do not say that. And I don't yuk.
mr_ed:  But Amber's a cutie?
Tucker:  Those words are hard to read. Is it proper Human?
mr_ed:  It's clunky. I'm sure there are better ones.
Tucker:  Do those!
mr_ed:  I'd like to see what other Sibes (and their people) come up with.
Tucker:  How do you do it?
mr_ed:  You can just try things out and see what you come up with. There are about a billion and a half permutations, but of course most of them won't make sense in human languages.
Tucker:  Is a permatation related to permafrost?
mr_ed:  I don't think so.
Tucker:  How much is a billion and a half?
mr_ed:  More than we could count on all the toes of all the doggies who have lived here!
Tucker:  That's too many. Is there another way?
mr_ed:  Sure, you can try a computer program like the Internet Anagram Server. The program narrows things down to just English words.
Tucker:  Does it work?
mr_ed:  It helps. Some of the words are a little strange.
Tucker:  Do "Human Assistant"!
mr_ed:  That one seems easier, but the Internet Anagram Server comes up with words that I'm not going to use here.
Tucker:  Like what?
mr_ed:  ::scowl::
Tucker:  Oh.
mr_ed:  Okay, you know how I give you guys little pieces of sliced turkey for treats?
Tucker:  Yeah.
mr_ed:  You could live on that, couldn't you?
Tucker:  If you gave us enough. Which would be lots more.
mr_ed:  Okay, so how about this anagram of "Human Assistant": Ham sustains ant.
Tucker:  It must be hard to get ones that normal people would actually say.
mr_ed:  You don't like that one?
Tucker:  It's better than "I yuk." But no.
mr_ed:  How about Assist a manhunt?
Tucker:  Better.
mr_ed:  Aha! Instant sums!
Tucker:  Time for treats and bed.
mr_ed:  I gave all the turkey to the ant. Is peanut butter okay?
Tucker:  There is no ant.
mr_ed:  There is no turkey, either. You turkeys gobbled it up, and I haven't been to the store.
Tucker:  Peanut butter will be just fine, thank you.
mr_ed:  Okey doke!
Tucker:  Woowoo!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Things couldn't be finah in Chinah

Tucker:  You've been on the computer for hours.
mr_ed:  I pulled together information for a couple of blogs I want to write, but I'm tired now and they're too heavy.
Tucker:  The blogs will smash the computer?
mr_ed:  They'll require a serious tone that I don't have the energy to write with and wouldn't want to read, anyway.
Tucker:  Heavy means serious?
mr_ed:  Sometimes.
Tucker:  Light means not serious?
mr_ed:  Sometimes.
Tucker:  You have something light to write about?
mr_ed:  A little.
Tucker:  This is going well.
mr_ed:  How about a Chinese man who can inflate and burst hot water bags through his nose?
Tucker:  Chinese hot water bags?
mr_ed:  I guess so.
Tucker:  They must be poor quality.
mr_ed:  Oh, goodness no. Haven't you heard? China produces high-quality stuff! Like the toys Mattel recalled - "Difference in standards was a main reason why the country's exports to some countries were frequently alleged to be problematic in quality, said the watchdog."
Tucker:  Oh.
mr_ed:  Yeah! And can you believe it? Some countries are "playing up China's product quality issues and using them as trade barriers" to increase sales of domestic stuff.
Tucker:  I've never heard of such a thing!
mr_ed:  That's why I'm so surprised that "the country's four-month special campaign to improve food and product safety" has temporarily halted "more than 300 toy export companies" and "identified 92 food export enterprises that had violated the rules."
Tucker:  My.
mr_ed:  And they've "recorded 32,800 cases of individuals and companies making or selling fake, poor-quality food and shut down 2,000 production facilities."
Tucker:  Mercy!
mr_ed:  And that's not all!
To date the [State Food and Drug Administration] has suspended 6,441 drug registration applications, cancelled 578 drug license numbers, the production permission certificates of five drug manufacturers and 1,202 medical appliance companies.
Tucker:  Are you sure this is a light blog?
mr_ed:  How about, "Reporter jailed for cardboard-stuffed bun hoax"?
Tucker:  Huh?
mr_ed:  A reporter "fabricated a TV news saying that Beijing dumpling makers used cardboard as a filling."
Tucker:  That's good for one ::har::
mr_ed:  Hmmm. Well, there's the story headlined "China establishes crruption prevention bureau."  [Headline has since been corrected online.]
Tucker:  That's good news.
mr_ed:  In Guangdong, 45% of women would rather marry a rich man than get a good job. Also, More than 40 percent of women said being good looking was more beneficial to finding a good job, then having ability.
Tucker:  Like spelling. When you write for a newspaper.
mr_ed:  You've got it. But being rich isn't easy, you know. You're in the spotlight, even in China, and a headline says the "Nation's rich have poor reputation."
Tucker:  They have reputations for being poor?
mr_ed:  They have reputations for not having "a sense of social responsibility" or "a caring heart."
Tucker:  How do they show caring hearts?
mr_ed:  They can say that they've "made obvious achievements in protecting" wildlife, I guess, and deny that "it is 'inhumane' to extract bile from the gallbladders of farmed bears."
Tucker:  Well, but what about individually?
mr_ed:  You could scold people who push to the front of the line.
Tucker:  Scolding is caring?
mr_ed:  You scold some people because you care about others. Like when you bring out your army.
Tucker:  Of course. What are you talking about?
mr_ed:  You hold joint military exercises with Russia and a few other countries "[t]o crack down on the 'three evil forces' - terrorism, separatism and extremism."  By saying that separatism is an evil force the Russians mean, "We won't let Chechnya be independent even though our constitution says they can be if they want."
Tucker:  So you scold Chechens because you care about Russians.
mr_ed:  And Chinese. On a lighter note - in fact, a bank note - a woman passing counterfeit money tried to swallow the evidence when she was caught by police. She choked on it and a hospital saved her life.
Tucker:  She was trying to be generous with her money. She just didn't have any to be generous with.
mr_ed:  Speaking of not having something, the 50 people who live in a Hainan village changed its name from Tianmeidong to Tianweiban. A feng shui master had told them it would increase their prosperity. But the character for ban isn't in the set of computer encodings officially used in China (though it's present in Unicode and even Big5 encoding).

Therefore the village name can't be entered into bureaucratic computers. Therefore
"Many villagers have not been able to get marriage certificates and are facing difficulties while seeking jobs, traveling and dealing in property," the China Daily said, citing an earlier report in the Nanguo Metropolitan News.
Tucker:  Bummer.
mr_ed:  Apparently some news reports said the character was obscure. But as xiaolongnu and michael farris noted,
> [T]he real story here is not how weird the character is, but how limited the Chinese bureaucracy is.
Here I am thinking that the real story is: Don't let a fortune teller name your village.
Tucker:  Good point.
mr_ed:  The take-home message.
Tucker:  The bottom line.
mr_ed:  The name of the game.
Tucker:  The meat.
mr_ed:  The nut.
Tucker:  The kernel.
mr_ed:  The heart.
Tucker:  The core.
mr_ed:  The gist.
Tucker:  The substance.
mr_ed:  The quintessence.
Tucker:  The brass tacks.
mr_ed:  The nitty-gritty.
Tucker:  The reality.
mr_ed:  Zhong Fu.
Tucker:  Naturally.
mr_ed:  Inner Truth.
Tucker:  I see.
mr_ed:  No, I Ching. "There will be advantage in crossing the great stream. There will be advantage in being firm and correct."
Tucker:  I'm going to firmly and correctly go to sleep.
mr_ed:  Good idea.

Launch a new career!

mr_ed:  Write slogans! An online blogger for Wired magazine wants to know whether someone out there can write a better NASA slogan (or "Core Message" - part of a new "NASA Message Construct") than "NASA explores for answers that power our future." Read about it (and post your genius-ness) at Wired and on this blog and probably many others. I saw some entries I liked:
  • What's up?
  • To boldly go.
  • Looking for Alice Kramden.
  • Making maps to the stars' homes.
  • Never-ending Ascent to Scientific Achievement.
  • Someone else's UFO.
  • Lets do launch!
  • Like satellite TV? You're welcome!
  • I find your lack of faith disturbing.
What, serious you expected? A few from me, possibly borrowed from a movie (like that last one, courtesy of Darth Vader):
  • Always in motion is the future.
  • That's no moon. It's a space station.
  • Who you gonna call when the ice caps melt?
  • Paparazzi to the really BIG stars!
  • Keeping space safe for democracy.
  • Rebels against the law of gravity.
  • We spent the Soviets to oblivion.
  • Yeah, and we fixed Hubble, too!
  • Please God, don't let us screw up.
  • Because you trust China even less.
  • Open the pod bay doors, Lisa [Nowak].
  • Who moved my green cheese?
  • Soylent Green is AAARGHHHHHH!
Your turn!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Winter is coming!

Tucker:  The Human Assistant said it was cold Sunday. I didn't think so. But he said there were 6 heating degree days all on that one day. (I don't know what that means!) He also said the average temperature was only 59° F. Actually, first he said something about the integral of temperature deficit as a function of blah blah blah.

Who listens to humans? He also said winter comes after we harvest the crops.  WE?

Tucker under apple tree
Here I am under the apple tree. You can click on the pictures to see them bigger. The H.A. says there were no apples last year. Lots and lots of pretty blossoms but no apples. I don't know. I got here later in the year. He also says he thinks they're smaller this year than before. And more of them are falling off the tree. But that's okay by us dogs. While we harvest them.

One day puppy stood up and picked an apple off the tree. H.A. says limbs shouldn't hang down that low. The tree needs to be pruned. He said that means that dried plums have to be smeared on it.

We have a plum tree. But the plums are too small and yucky to eat. They're just for looking at. And maybe for birds to eat, I don't know. But I know he's not drying any of them out and smearing them on the apple tree. Maybe he was pulling on my leg, which I don't like.

close-up of grape vine tall, tall grape vines

We also have grapes. H.A. says the vines are like Very. Slow. Kudzu. They climbed over the raspberry branches. Up the telephone pole's leash. He says we'll have to hack them down a few feet. But they're already too tall for him to reach.

Click on the right picture and look closely. We have a small crop of puppytail. I hope that doesn't come back next year!

Tucker and sunflowers These sunflowers are by the house. I don't know why they're not as tall as the ones down by the grapes. The human says when he lived here 40 years ago there weren't any sunflowers here. But his mom bought birdseed at the store and there were sunflower seeds in it.

She would set it out in pie pans on the patio. Which is just flat stones set in the ground. He says the sunflowers had taken over the patio when he came back four years ago. But they weren't all over the yard like this summer.

Sunflowers are escape artists. They jumped the fence and are in the side yards next to the house now. Maybe next year the whole back yard and side yards will be sunflowers! Except under the apple tree, of course.

Bees love the sunflowers. They had quit work for the day when H.A. took these pictures. Jaeger would snap at flies. Good thing he didn't snap at bees!

The sunflowers are starting to be done now. The bees are almost done harvesting. Most of the apples are out of the tree. I guess the birds ate all the plums. The crops are almost harvested. Winter should be here soon!

Sunday, September 9, 2007


Tucker:  Have anydoggy's people taken this quiz to see what breed they are? (When you get there, click GAME on the left side.) The Human Assistant is an Alaskan Malamute! Like Holly!  ::big husky grin::   Except for that, it sounds like people are getting uncommon breeds. But Mal-Mals may not be common in England. Where the movie is.

Movie? Yes. A man dies and comes back as a dog. No, it's not a remake of The Shaggy Dog (1959, Fred MacMurry), The Shaggy D.A. (1976, Dean Jones), or The Shaggy Dog (2006, Tim Allen). Maybe not, anyway.


The H.A. saw Minky's Mom on Saturday. But he didn't tell her what he was supposed to: "Don't take my answers to the letter game!" I think it makes an ill eagle or something. Maybe she could just change the celebrity to Tiny Tim and be okay.


Amber said I'm cerebral. I asked the Human Assistant what that meant. He said it means that I have three heads. And he showed me this picture.

Hercules capturing Cerberus

But I saw that he didn't spell cerebral right. So I told him to try again. Then he said it means I'm a stinker.

He showed me this picture of a statue. A man giving his chin a knuckle massage. I don't know why he stinks. Maybe it's the sculptor who stinks. Maybe H.A. was just lisping; I think he meant "thinker."

See, he demands that you think. When you ask for help he won't just tell you the answer. He makes you work for it. "Nothing In Life Is Free," he says. Brat.

So it's not my fault, Amber. I'm not cereb... whatever. It's just the stupid Human un-Assistant. He used to do it to his kids, too.


I heard about a game that I thought was for dogs. I thought it was called "You Eat Cat Poop," but I guess I got that wrong. It's a party game for humans.

One person writes a sentence. The next person draws a picture of that and hides the sentence. The third person writes a new sentence and hides the picture. The next person draws a new picture and hides the sentence they drew it from. The next person writes a new sentence and hides the picture they wrote it from.

Then when it gets to me or the puppy, we chew up the paper. That's how that game is played!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Puppy pix

mr_ed:  I'm sure sorry your breathing problems are flaring up again. Hope the medicine works!
Tucker:  ::suspicious look::  What medicine?
mr_ed:  Oh. Never mind.
Tucker:  Our friends are leaving us comments. But we aren't answering them.
mr_ed:  Okay, pick one and we'll knock it off tonight.
Tucker:  Knock off a friend?
mr_ed:  A comment. Pick one.
Tucker:   Benny, Moey, and Minky think the shelter should use a picture from puppy's dogster page on the MaxFund website.
mr_ed:  I'd rather not, for three reasons. One is that the photo I took has a major flaw, artistically speaking. The border between the sidewalk and grass makes for a giant line that looks like it goes through Mystique's head.
Tucker:  So?
mr_ed:  When you're looking at her ever-so-cute face, the line draws your eyes away and off into nothingness. A picture's composition should keep interest on the interesting parts.
Tucker:  What's another reason?
mr_ed:  Lots of the other dogs' pictures were taken in front of the shelter, with that pink orange whatever wall behind them. It's kind of a theme, and I'd like to keep that going for Mystique's photo.
Tucker:  Are you an artist yourself?
mr_ed:  I can talk like one, sometimes.
Tucker:  What's the third reason?
mr_ed:  Nikki volunteers a lot of time so MaxFund can show off our dogs. She deserves to have her work seen.

tweaked MaxFund photo of Mystique Tucker:  Okay, so what's this?
mr_ed:  I tweaked her photo a little. It doesn't look great - it should be crisper, snappier, so it catches people's eyes. But I helped it a little, I think. So I sent it to Amy in case she'd like to use it.
Tucker:  And the write-up?
mr_ed:  I didn't think of anything to add, so I sent what I showed you last night.
Tucker:  So people will start calling right away to adopt her!
mr_ed:  After it gets on the website, sure, it'll probably be pretty quick.
Tucker:  Woo wooooo!
mr_ed:  Which will leave us room for another foster dog or two. Shoot, maybe even three.
Tucker:  ::snort::  I won't dignify that with a response.
mr_ed:  But I think you did, didn't you?
Tucker:  I'm going to bed.
mr_ed:  I love you, my handsome husky.

-- photo of Mystique by Nicole Howard

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Pushing the pup

Tucker:  Why is puppy still here?
mr_ed:  Because she's not listed on the MaxFund website yet, so nobody knows she's available.
Tucker:  When will she get listed?
mr_ed:  For one thing, Nikki the volunteer photographer had to get some pictures of her and get them to Amy so she could pick one.
MaxFund photo of Mystique Tucker:  Amy picked this picture?
mr_ed:  It must not have looked this dark to her. I'll have to let her know.
Tucker:  Okay, that's for one thing. What's another?
mr_ed:  I have to write up some information about her.
Tucker:  About Amy or about Nikki?
mr_ed:  About Mystique. In fact, I did write it out before supper, and now I can't find it. It's a good thing I have dogs I can blame for paper disappearing.
Tucker:  ::snort::  I didn't even see it. I think you lost it.
mr_ed:  And I wanted to round up a bunch more pictures of Mystique so people could see what a lively little squirt she is.
Tucker:  You've been at the computer a long time. Did you finish that?
mr_ed:  Yup, Mystique has a dogster page now with 16 photos on it.
Tucker:  Okay. So are you going to write the info tonight?
mr_ed:  How's this?
Hi! I'm a cute, happy, healthy, cute, lively, loving, cute little girl who needs a new home because my person couldn't keep me. I'm full-grown in size but still a puppy, and puppy kindergarten would be great to improve my confidence, manners and obedience!

I will run in the yard and warn you about visitors during the day and snuggle with you at night! I'm crate-trained too! I love to play with other dogs, even big ones! And I should be fine with older kids, but I've never met any cats.

There are lots more pictures of cute little me and my doggie buddies on my dogster page. If you'd like to meet me, email my foster dad at ed*maxfundvolunteers.org.

Tucker:  Put in that she drives me crazy.
mr_ed:  Negative stuff in her description will make it harder to find her a new home.
Tucker:  Oh. I guess that looks okay.
mr_ed:  Seems like I'm forgetting something in that description. I guess I won't send it to Amy until I sleep on it.
Tucker:  The computer won't fit under your pillow.
mr_ed:  I'll just remember what I wrote in the back part of my brain.
Tucker:  Is there room?
mr_ed:  If it gets lost in there, I'll just write a new one.
Tucker:  Well, okay. Night night. Sleep tight. Don't let the amnesia bugs bite.
mr_ed:  G'night bunky.