Media and Art · Personal Entries

Sea Creatures

We’re headed north today, and there’s no time to post.  I have so much to do.   Gag and bind the children and tie them to the roof of the car, drug the dog….. There’s no end to my travel preparations, is there?

Karen will be caring for The Damn Cat.  Bless her.  We were going to bring the cat north with us because…..well, because I’m insane.  TDC isn’t litter-trained, however, and so we purchased a harness and leash for him, so that he could safely go outside while we traveled north.    It went about as well as you’re imagining, and my only regret is that we didn’t record the fabulousness that was Matt’s already slightly unhinged cat flying completely off his hinges.

When I called Karen to see if she could keep an eye on TDC while we are away, her words were:

“Sure.  I’ll take the cat.”

I took this to mean that she wants to take the cat forever, literally.  She quickly clarified,  insisting that she only meant she would “take” responsibility for caring for TDC while we were gone, but I didn’t hear her because I didn’t want to.  They will be so happy together.

Also, you might notice the new header.  It was a quickie I threw together from this painting, which was a collaborative piece I did with Matt several years ago.  While I worked on a series related to mapping, Matt drew his own maps of Lake Norman, complete with fish and the underwater mines for which the lake is famous.   I cut up those drawings which weren’t precious to him, and collaged them into a painting.  While I’ve had several offers for this painting, I will never, ever sell it.

I love this piece, and it hangs above my fireplace.

Sea Creatures (collaboration with Matthew Stein), acrylic on paper, 30 x 42
Personal Entries

Don’t steal my cat, bro

I’ve been reluctant to discuss my summer plans, as I’m afraid it might be read as an invitation to come rob my house while I’m away.  Please don’t do that, OK?

And trust me, there is nothing here to take, except the cat.  If you are reading this and forming a plan to come rob Vaka Design’s house? The cat is all yours.  Mazel tov.  His food is in the cabinet next to the sink, and I wouldn’t advise substituting a cheaper brand, as a cheaper brand leads directly to bloodshed. Did I ever mention that I keep the diamonds in the cat?  I do.  And the gold casting grain, and the sapphires, the emeralds, and any extra hundred dollar bills I have lying around.  All IN the cat.   Not that I’m recommending it, but that cat is extremely valuable, and it would behoove someone to steal him while I’m gone.

The c-clamp holds the diamonds in


I haven’t taken a vacation since I started the business, and holy wowwy wow wow,  I need one.   I’m a bit fried, and my attitude ….well, blogosphere, my attitude sucks just a bit, and nobody does sucky attitude as well as I do.  Not to brag, but when my attitude goes bad, it goes impressively bad:  Nothing is good!  Everything is bad!  Nothing will ever, ever work out!  I throw myself into that bad attitude like an LSD-tripping pig throws itself into mud;  the suckiness is me and I am it; it is everything.

I don’t do things in halves, do I?  Nope.  Maybe I need a break?  Chyea.

When you work from home, you never really stop, do you?  The best things about working from home are also the worst things:  your work is right there,  right in the next room!   It’s wonderfully-slash-terribly easy to zip back in to do one more little thing.  It’s guilt-inducing when you don’t go back in.  You might break at the end of the day, but you never really stop thinking about work unless you go far, far away.

So, off to Maine I go!

As many of you know, I spent my childhood summers in Maine, with my grandparents.   Recently, my Mom razed the old cabin and built a new one. With indoor plumbing!  I kid you not, we now pee inside, like the highbrow folk.

Our house in Maine

Our house is on a lake, close to Mt. Desert Island and Acadia National Park, and so the boys and I will be doing plenty of swimming and hiking and climbing on rocks and slapping at mosquitoes.  Life will be good, and I will be posting from Maine.  Because I still like the blog and I like you, just not gold.  I hate gold.   I HATES IT!

In the meantime, I’m tying up my loose ends.  We’re  getting our house pretty and nice so that it will be nice to come home to, and I’m finishing up last-minute orders.  Now that I know they are last minute orders, and then I get a break?  I love them, just a little.


Personal Entries

Hello, lunch

Well hello, lunch.

hello lunch2


The Damn Cat has taken a shine to bringing live creatures into the house.  A snake.  Rabbits.  Lizards.  The Damn Cat  handles the animals quite gently, because that way they are at their optimal best for future torture.  Really, is there anything worse than putting your best into torture and not even getting a lively, terrified squeal in return?   No.  There isn’t.  Bless his little, heinous heart.  

This is what he brought in today.   A mockingbird?  A catbird?

Although he brings them home gently,  most of his catches would die without treatment.   Cats’ mouths harbor serious bacteria, and if a cat breaks an animal’s skin at all, it should be treated with antibiotics before being released into the wild. 

Karen is a NC Wildlife Rehabilitator, and she tells me stuff. 

Once I got him away from TDC this guy looked spunky, but I’m going to keep him warm and quiet until Karen gets home to check him out, give me dirty looks, and talk smack about the cat I never wanted.

Older favorites · Personal Entries

The damn cat and his lover

You know, I’ve been trying to warm up to the damn cat.  I try to see his good qualities, because my son loves him so much.  At the moment I’m struggling with seeing the good.

Yesterday the cat and his life-partner, Naked Build-A-Bear, insisted on going public with their love.  As I’ve explained before, I don’t have a problem with their relationship, but I do have a don’t ask/don’t tell policy.   Today, though, the cat was insistent upon having a public love-in.

As I worked on the computer, the cat dragged his bear near to me and started making the sweet, sweet love to it.  Just no. I picked the bear up and tossed it into another room, only to have the whole act repeated.  Drag the bear to me, start with the freaky mojo, I toss the bear, and the whole cycle repeats.  Several times.  The cat was adamant.

Why?  Why did the venue for cat-bear sex need to be right next to me? Does the cat just love his family so much that he wants to be near me?  Did I play some kinky part in his cat fantasy?  Because, blogosphere, I am really, really, not comfortable with that.

Finally, I picked up the cat and grabbed his sex toy by the ear, took them both upstairs, and shut them in a bedroom.  Their passion was such that it couldn’t wait another minute, and after a half hour of cat-moaning, there was silence.  A little later, he meowed to be freed from his love shack.  I went up, opened the door, and came back down and returned to my work.

Slowly, he dragged the Naked Build-A-Bear downstairs to me, gave it a few post-coital licks, and then flopped, spent, on the floor beside it.  A moment later he stood up and vomited, then lay back down and went to sleep.

Sometimes I hate him.