Posts Tagged ‘puppies’

His face always had a smile on it. Curious to what troubled me, he always seemed to have a solution to any problem I came to him with. When I think of adjectives to describe him I come up with: handsome, cheerful, smart (oh, that is a big one for me), caring, thoughtful and just so easy to talk to. Ernesto was his name and this is the story of how our relationship came to an end.

By what means do you normally judge a person? I ask that both rhetorically and literally. Think about that for a second…

…seriously, don’t be a jerk. Take a second and ask yourself how you deem whether or not someone is a good person. I can wait…

We meet new people just about everyday. From our brief interactions during trips to the grocery stores to the people we see for eight hours a day, five days a week at work. I have no doubt that all of us adjust our “Judge” filters accordingly. When you see a person in the checkout line all thugged out. The filter most likely is set to minimum. Allowing only the vague face value information to register in order to make a quick assessment. Whereas maximum filtration is used when decoding a fellow employee. You know outside of work they wear their mohawk and piercings with pride. While you think nothing of it, because the suit and tie work attire you see them in five days a week, prevented any prejudices to form allowing you to get to know them in an uninhibited manner.

Is this a bad thing? I like to think it isn’t. Our filters exist and are calibrated so, to allow those of our preference to enter our lives for the better. If we are to trust another human being, a more scrutinized observation must be made of them. Which is why I feel we are more open to hearing out those who we often share a close proximity with. Rather than a fly-by judgement of those we meet on the street or in the womens lingerie department (I am talking about you creepy jacket in the middle of 82 degree weather-man standing worryingly close to me in the Victoria’s Secret store, staring intently while I check out the new Angel’s stone encrusted lace push up!!!!!). As we look for companionship of any sorts, we dig deep, break through the apparent, and stave off the obvious just so we know whether or not we should allow an individual to become someone we desire to be around. Sadly, some filter all people at all levels solely based on race, sexual orientation and other no true character-related qualities. There doesn’t seem to be much we can do about them. But hopefully the “Asshole Bill” I keep suggesting via emails to my local senator can be introduced sometime in the near future.

It is at this juncture that we allow ourselves to take our judgements and either bestow or withhold the trust needed to maintain a healthy relationship. It may be at this point we call these individuals our friends. Which may also perpetuate the trust further allowing for feelings to develop into something more. Or, just maybe bring forth so much trust that you seek them out in your times of need. That when they speak, their words bring comfort to a distraught mind. And as you welcome the strong embrace of everything you originally assessed them to be. You let go and allow yourself to be comforted by their fortitude. All while they take control and help the world make sense again.

Ernesto was that kind of person…

I met him by means of random encounter. It was a clear bright day and though Albuquerque was traversing through the end-trails of Fall. The brisk air and low arching sun made for a comfortable Autumn midday. I had pulled over in need of a tire change when low and behold, a strange man emerged from the business I had pulled in front of. It is easy to guess that Ernesto is who I am speaking of. The surprise for those who know me will be that I relinquished the duty of a simple tire change to someone other than myself. (On a side note- One of the few things my dad did for me when I was young was teach me to never be afraid to pick up a wrench or a hammer. Under my father’s direction, I was taught how to change tires and what applications particular parts play in the operation of a car’s engine. I consider myself rather capable.) However, it was one of those circumstances where I had no need to say a thing. With every bit of assurance, he took charge,  made the change, smiled at me and disappeared just as soon as he made his presence first known.

Truthfully, I was taken back a little. He was charming, reassuring and there just to help me. As I began my descent home, I was briefly caught in a fantasy of sorts. I wondered if I would see him again. Thinking about what kind of person he really was and whether or not I would someday be able to get to know him more. I was ready to engage my next level of filtration for a person I had spent no less than ten minutes with. It was a little weird, but I had my heart set on seeing him again.

As the days passed as they tend to do. Ernesto ventured further and further from my mind. Only the observations of the routine checks of my tires would bring back the memories of what happened that Autumn day. Upon recollection, I would entertain the thought of once again driving into that very same parking lot where we first met. Curious to know if Ernesto would be there and as eager to help with any issues I had.  

Those too were just mere thoughts that went just as fast as they came.

That was until one day, I was on that very same road pulling into that very same parking lot in need of rectifying a very familiar problem. Was it fate, not really. I knew I had a tire on it’s last leg. I knew where to go if I needed help…and so I went and he was there.

We actually had a chance to talk this time around. Exchanging tidbits of information with one another. The conversation felt as genuine as one with my best friend. Every bit of the encounter just seemed organic and it made me feel at ease. Again a tire was changed and again I was on my way to my intended destination. This time though, I had a phone number with me and promise that if I ever needed anything, he wanted to be the one who would be there for me.

To be honest I never felt bad for using that phone number for what he asked me to use it for. Whenever I needed something, I would go to him and he would make everything better. It was a mutual thing between us. He got his and I got mine. Never upset with the outcome and he was always happy to see me just as I was to see him. I felt as though our relationship had gotten to the point to where I could really trust him. I had run him through my filter and I felt as though my judgement of this man was solid.

It was at the pinnacle of our relations that something drastic happened. I needed help and the only one I could think of to turn to was Ernesto. I knew he would be the one to help make things right, help solve the problems and make all the bad go away. It was the latest that I had ever called him. He didn’t seem too bothered by the time and urged me to come over. Part of the predicament was finding a way to get to him, but I was so headstrong that he was to be my knight in shining armor. I did what I normally wouldn’t do and hailed for a ride from someone I didn’t know just to get to him.

He laid out a plan to be followed and with his charming smile, told me everything was going to be okay. I was worried; I knew what had happened was going to be costly. But under Ernesto’s direction, I agreed to his plan and felt a little more at ease considering what had happened.

A few weeks later I had adjusted to the changes that resulted from my earlier misfortunes. It was around that time that Ernesto had called me to inform me that he had righted the wrong and what cost I was to incur as the result. To be frank, the cost was money. He needed it in order to finish what had been started by his means to solve my problem. But it wasn’t the only news he had for me. He needed more dough. He explained that he had essentially opened pandora’s box. That more problems were discovered from attempting to solve the initial one.

I was devastated. I was looking forward to getting my life back to normal but things just seemed to go from bad to worse. I had handed him over $1,900 to satisfy the first problem but just as I did that he asked how soon I could get him the $200 more to start mending the next. It was going to take some time. Christmas had just passed and money was short, but I had no doubt that he still was to be my hero once all the dust had settled.

A few more weeks had passed and I met him to deliver the money. He seemed content at the moment but a concern was in his eyes that I had never seen before. He wasn’t much for conversation that day. So I went on my way daydreaming of positive things to come. But it was short lived.

A phone call from Ernesto a few days later confirmed a suspicion I had lingering in the back of my mind. He was at odds with the task he had volunteered to mend. The money I had given him had ran out and he needed more. $2000 more to be exact.  Not just that but he wanted more time to finish what he started. It had already been two months and my day to day was becoming increasingly difficult to manage…my faith in him was beginning to falter.

At this point in time, he had involved himself so deep into this matter that I had no choice but to continue to trust him. He had to finish what he started there was no turning around at that point. Each subsequent phone call did nothing more than strip away at everything that bonded our relationship. Arguments began to happen between us, spurred on by my growing distaste at the reasons he fed me and his now much harsher tone. I was seeing myself become angrier as the days went on. Not just with him but with everyone around me. This was affecting me a lot more and was encroaching into other areas of my life. Family and friends who knew of Ernesto’s involvement all had an opinion. And as much as they were trying to help, all it was doing was making matters worse by aiding in the erosion of the trust between him and me.

It had come to the point that I could not trust anything Ernesto was telling me. I had to get someone else involved – someone I knew would have my interests at heart and not be operating on their own agenda. The feedback was not very comforting. I was informed that Ernesto was telling me the truth as to what needed to be done in order to finish what he started. But the cost was another story. The amount of money was questionable. Yet,  there was little that anyone could do now. Ernesto was in complete control of the situation… I was at his mercy and he knew it.

He had destroyed my belief that all people have an inherent good within them. That when the chips are down, heroes will emerge from the unlikeliest places. I looked to him to be my hero. I ran him through the judgement gauntlet and I felt as though I had placed my trust in the right person. I WAS BEATEN… all while he was holding my well-being ransom for the remainder of the amount he had asked for.

As budgets were adjusted to meet the demands of Ernesto. I was hardly able to enjoy any comfort in the matter. The light that began to flood the end of this deep gloomy tunnel reflected nothing more than gloomy skies. For I knew that my next encounter with Ernesto was to be my last. Oh, how it ended with such a display of fireworks.

Three and a half months and $3100 later it was over. I hated him, I hated myself, and I hated who I had become because of it.

I sought out clarity by means of conversations with someone very dear to me, my mother. She was the neutral party in the whole matter and never let her opinion bias what advice she gave. She helped me realize that the trust I had placed in him was valid. That I should never doubt my abilities to discern the viability of an individual. And that trust will remain until MY view changes of them, but, even when that view changes and the trust dissipates, the other party’s intentions still may have been pure.

It was my evolving perception that ultimately changed the dynamics between Ernesto and myself. I realized that as our encounters, interactions, and circumstances changed, my initial judgement of him was no longer valid, though I had originally scrutinised his worth with heavy filtration. Once the trust began to dispel into oblivion, I abandoned the means to properly asses him and started to judge him utilizing only very broad and bitterly acquired data. I can only assume that he had done the same with his changes towards me.

It is with this revelation that I now carry around a slightly bruised ego. I blindedly let myself and others shape my outlook of another individual who was doing nothing more than his best to help me out. It may not have been done within an acceptable cost or timeline. However, in the end, everything was rectified and my life was able to resume back to normal. I should have taken a second and realized that Ernesto was doing nothing more than what he felt he was best capable of.

I would like to think now that most everyone in this world views their efforts as genuine. Aside from the occasional idiot with a gun and a fucked up mindset, there is little out there that would prove that “we the people” go about our day with intentions to hinder the growth and prosperity of another individual. Ernesto proved that in the end. Once I refiltered everything about this man. I realized that, in summation, he was a great mechanic after all. My car runs beautifully now.

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Amongst the household noise, the music, the I love You’s and the wonderful sound of children’s laughter. There is one other absolutely amazing thing heard so very often within the walls of my home…

“Argh, damn it Dela, you piece of shit dog! Quit peeing in my fucking house!”

Sentimental isn’t it.

Yes the joys of owning a pet for some are quite, well…joyful. And for the most part I share in those joys more often than not. Dela Mae is a beautiful Australian Shepherd mix, affectionate and very smart. Her energy is non-stop and possesses the characteristics of the breed I have always been so fond of. But ever since we decided to bring home our four pawed bundle of pee, I mean joy, we have dealt with countless chewed up possessions, fence jumps and uh umm…”accidents”.

-RANDOM TANGENT RANT (RTR)-
“Accidents”, really, who the heck named them that. This two year old (estimated) kennel adopted (cause I am a responsible hoe) dog (pee factory), knows what the heck she is doing (Angry Face). She has two pee spots that she enjoys using for the sole purpose of watering my carpet. Each one carefully chosen to avoid detection no matter what room we occupied. So by no means would these be considered accidents. Being mainly Australian Shepherd, her intelligence has been our biggest enemy.
-END RANT-

At first, we granted her adjustment time. Figuring that the trauma of being in a pound for seven days, just being fixed and then thrown into a new environment. She was deserving of a few get out of jail pee cards.

But then it didn’t stop. In addition to the aforecited problems, I started to feel my affinity for our new family member begin to falter. Not wanting to grow any resentment towards Ms. Dela Mae, we stepped up our efforts to get our belle house broken.

Timely walks-                          check
Kennel kept-                            check
more timely walks (5am)-     check
no water before bed-              check
Anti-puppy-pee spray-          check
untimely walks-                       check
still pee’s in the house-          check

It came down to this, make Dela an outside dog or find a new home for her. Two options I just didn’t want to see happen. So I decided on one last option-

AN INVISIBLE FENCE  (Insert Echo Effect Here)FENCE FENCE FENCE FENCE FENCE…

Partnered with a doggy door, I assumed this option would solve her jumping the fence and also allow her to venture in and out of the house to do her business. All on her own time.

The cost for everything was a bit much and it took about a day of labor to dig the trench that circumnavigated my backyard. The doggy door was simple enough, except that the one purchased was for a entryway that was much taller than ours. After a few modifications to the puppy-pee-portal, testing circuits and burying copper lines, I was done.

Now for those of you who don’t know how an invisible fence works here is the four uno uno on that shiz.

Dog is fitted with collar which is battery powered and contains some sort of sensor.
Boundary is created with copper wire.
Dog approaches boundary, transmitter uses magic to detect copper wire and emits behavioral correcting shock to dog creating awareness of newly set boundaries.

Of course curiosity got the better me and my kiddos. And with the battery now half drained from us shocking each other into uncontrollable giggle fits. We equipped our hairy family member with her SPARK-ly new necklace and proceeded to monitor her reaction.

As per the pamphlet’s instructions, I gave her leashed walks in the backyard, treats to show her what areas were “safe” and lots and lots of affection. Most importantly though, give it time to work.

Initially, Dela was still her stubborn self. I witnessed her power through the electric force field to freedom as she bound over the fence. I heard her yelp at the pricks when she attempted all known exits when she thought no one was around. I even found her begin to dig in the middle of the yard seemly looking for a safer escape route.

I wanted this to work so badly. I began to lose sight at what it was doing to my dog. It started to dawn on me that the whole experience just down right scared her. The first few shocks freaked her out yes. But then came the refusal to leave the house all together. The exact opposite place I wanted her to be. Locking the doggy door and bringing her back outside provided more of the same…a frightened puppy.

The backyard was now her enemy, annoyingly, it became mine as well. With her new refusal to have anything to do with the outside world. Her pee spots quickly became her poop spots. Dela took her newly shrunken world very hard. The few times when she was alone out back, our adjacent neighbor notified me of Dela’s presence in their yard. Not happy to be playing with their two dogs, but frightened trying to get inside the house.  So, still jumping the fence and desecrating my carpet I almost lost it…but as instructed I gave her time.

After a while she lost her energy, her zest for life…she wasn’t my Dela anymore. She moped around, didn’t eat much and was a shadow of her former self. I thought I broke my dog and I had a feeling that not even duct tape could fix her.

Slowly, she came around. She seemed to have come to terms with her new limitations and began to emerge from her forced upon funk. I started to see my happy tail-wagging puppy again.  But all this made me begin to think a much bigger thing had unfolded right in front of my eyes.

Dela Mae being a dog, had no idea what happened to her world. To her, one day the world was open to her. As long as no one was watching she could do anything and go anywhere she wanted to. Then out of nowhere she was blindsided, and fight it as she did, her world as she knew it had ended. Or so it had seemed…

I have come to the conclusion that she emerged from her funk for one very good reason. Dela realized that this single event would not stop her from being who she is.

-She adjusted, she overcame and she found herself again.

It is with these thoughts that I realize our own worlds are not very much different from Dela Mae’s. Things happen, boundaries are set and shit just sometimes sucks. But how we deal with these matters and the things we learn from them defines our character. We all can take notice to Dela’s victory over adversity. Either you painfully pass through the electric fence, you cower in your safe place, or do it all and emerge from the funk albeit a little wiser.

My admiration for my dog has grown ten-fold following these proceedings.Though she leaves us the occasional pee-present. Dela Mae gave me, and my carpet, a break from the pooping. Happily the fence jumping has ended as well. She’s my puppy again!

Seems as though my dog and I taught each other a few life lessons with all this. Taking a step back, I can recount many Invisible Fences in my life that seemingly popped up out of the blue. Proudly, I can say I emerged just as Dela has. A little shocked and all the more enlightened about the world around me.

~~Cute Janessa~~

http://www.twitter.com/cutejanessa

http://www.youtube.com/cutejanessa

*****For the record, I am not trying to be an advocate for this route of animal training nor was it my first, second, third or fourth choice in the matter. This was decided after many discussions with my other half. We are not dog trainers nor do we pretend to be. We tried what we knew best when it comes to housebreaking a dog. Along with many other suggestions from friends and family we couldn’t find anything that worked for our Dela Mae. I may be making light of the situation but truthfully we felt as though this was our last option before we sought a new family for her.

Happy birthday to me!!!

Well, not exactly. Happy birth-month would be the most accurate way to put it. I am rather late in telling myself congrats on surviving another year, but I think I can forgive myself. As the title implies, this months marks the 29th anniversary of my birth. This year marks a particularly special year for myself for reasons that barely make sense to me. I will make attempts to fill you in on why…

A bit of reflection is in order in order to completely bring my thoughts full circle.

Years back…I did dumb stuff.      ~~Fin~~

Okay, well maybe more details then?

I was a daredevil to be succinct. I loved pushing boundaries, my own manly. I was a good kid growing up, hardly ever strayed beyond the confines of my mothers wishes. However, oh man did I love exploring and adventures. My excursions often possessed a local flavor really. It wasn’t till I owned a vehicle that I started taking the liberties of travel a little more for granted. In attempts of being less vague here are a few habits to note.

I was a climber, that was me. Houses, trees, buildings, mountains and anything that looked like it could provide a challenge. So as a young-in, skirts were never much a preference.

I rode the skate parks. I was no x-gamer but I rode vert (common skate park lingo meaning Ramps with vertical walls tapering towards the edge of the ramp). It was enough to give me a good little buzz and gain rep among the other skate park nerds.

I rode everywhere, I had a bike as my initial means of transport. I knew Albuquerque inside and out. Alleyways, backstreets and freeways were my means of passage. Yes, I said freeways…

I pole vaulted. A defining part of my youth as a daredevil. In a not so modest way to put it, I was good. Best in the state and traveled to represent said state two years in a row among other athletes in the southwest. If you have never seen this sport, first you are missing out. Second here is a link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTZoHjCz-qc. Watch it, obviously I am not in the video but oh man I just heart watching that shiz!

My life post graduation (and sadly, post pole vaulting) was more of the same.

You know those backstops at baseball parks that protect crowds, cars  and spectators. Ya, did a handstand one of those.

You know the Damn Del Hover, (that’s mexican for Hover Damn [I am Mexican, so internet rules allow me to use that joke]). Ya I did a handstand on the edge of that.

Various other things around the city. I had a very amusing picture of me atop the Carlise stop light at the Gibson intersection. There was a lot of honking going on. I am sure I gave plenty of people water cooler stories that day.

So ya, that was the short list of dumb stuff I did. More so, that is some of the stuff that defined me. I was never popular in school, I say school because that unpopularity rein began in Elementary and ended my Junior year of High School. The few friends I had just egged me on. I hung around guys mainly, not to out of sorts for a tomboy. It did make for some every creative interactions when we were bored of my normal daredeviling. But it was me, Janessa.

Now let us return to what this all means. Of all my live fast thoughts I had. There was one that has been bouncing around my head since I began my daring feats.

That being, “I never see myself surviving beyond 30.”

Why 30, eff I don’t know. But the thought was strong in my head then, morbidly, very much so still now. The thought lingers still and every day’s end brings me closer to my perceived  expiration date.

Deep down I know it not to be true and the Atheist in me just gives me the stink eye whenever the thought passes through my mind.

It is a weird thing mortality. I am not afraid of dying and if my end is near so be it. I think I scare my other-half with these thoughts more than myself. Strangely, I have been motivated by the thoughts of my passing.

Enter blog. I want this year to be documented in some way. If for some reason I was clairvoyant about my death I want to have fun with it. I want to share with others my inner thoughts. Maybe give my kids something to look back at and see what kind of person their mom was at this point in her life.

So for the remaining 11 months I have left. (Joke) I will blog what matters most to me. If all goes according to plan, I will also translate these passages to my YouTube channel.

Hope you all are ready for the ride!

~~Janessa~~