Archive for January, 2011
The other day I read a blog post inspired by the question “what you’d like to experience if you were the opposite gender for a day“. I read those words and immediately had an answer, or more of a non-answer.
There is nothing I specifically want to do as a man. I don’t want to be me, with my whole history, simply transformed into a male body for the day. I don’t find that idea intriguing to me at all. I’m sure if it happened, it would be interesting, but it just isn’t an idea that I find particularly fascinating.
However, I’d absolutely be interested in waking up one day as a man, who had whole history of being male, and spending that day just doing whatever that man’s regular routine was, wherever the path of being male had led me to, and then still carrying that memory of what it felt like to be a male me, back as regular female me again.
I am deeply interested in what it would be like to have lived a lifetime never having had anybody stare at my tits, or make comments about them. I’d like to know what it feels like to walk down a street when I’ve never had vans pull up beside me and ominously slide open the door. When I’d never heard people inside a car, shouting, wanting a fuck, and making it clear that my wanting or lack of wanting, was of no concern to them.
I’m totally intrigued by what it would be like to not carry around the suffocating weight of thousands of vague and not so vague reminders that more than half the population is physically stronger than me – that reminder that only vigilance and willingness to do battle gives me some hope of maintaining my personal space at more than their whim.
Because, I really don’t know. I don’t know who I would be if I wasn’t a woman. I don’t know if the constant suspicion and wariness I feel is just my inherent personality, or if it is because of all I have experienced as a female human. All of the looks, the words, the “compliments” I “should” feel “flattered” by, and all the cruel words spoken when I was “less” of a “woman” than I “should be“, that have made me loathe almost all references to my physical appearance.
Would I hit on a woman at a party, unaware that I was standing too close for her comfort, and be totally baffled and even indignant when she politely declined?
Would regular female me be more comfortable and confident in my own skin the next day, or would I carry the same fears along with a new heaping dose of resentment?
I am curious.
Bear moved in with us on December 31st, 2010, making him our New Year’s Eve foster, and the 8th foster dog we took in during our first year of fostering.
We actually met Bear on December 18th, his first day with the rescue. He was badly injured, and they were doing his initial assessment and treatment at the vet clinic when I stopped by to get Laney and Corbin a check up. The vet told me she had just been working on a chow mix who was a real mess. Once the puppies had been looked at, I asked to meet the chow. We went back to meet him. He was a sad sight, but what a face. I said, “Look at his bear face!” and was told, “They told me his name, but it was unpronounceable, and I took one look at him and put ‘Bear’ on the records.”
A couple of days later when I saw V over some puppy matters, she told me that she hoped we would foster Bear after the puppies had been adopted.
After Corbin left, I agreed to just try having Bear here for the holiday weekend, so he wasn’t stuck in the clinic. If it worked, we’d just foster him, if it was too much trouble, we would wait until Laney was adopted. It was too much trouble, but it always is the first day. He is still here with us now too.
I considered not doing a 2010 post about Laney, since she is still with me, however, she was part of the 2010 foster parade, so here goes.
Tori Laney arrived with Corbin. She was 3.3 lbs and had short stubby little legs and a short stubby little tail, and a round sausage-y belly.
Seriously, how has she not been adopted yet?
Two words: Wild Child
This little girl has attitude. She has energy. She wants adventure and to play with the big boys. She can walk a mile in weather than some grown dogs turn around and walk back inside from. She might be small, but she is no prissy sensitive little purse dog. She went on a date to a possible home to meet the resident Rhodesian Ridgeback, a dog breed used for hunting lions. Laney was too much of a PITA for the lion hunter to deal with. “Hi! Hi! We should be friends! Let me chew on your face! Let me bite at your foot! Let me grab your tail! Hi! Let’s go eat a lion! I get the ears!”
So, Corbin got a home, and Laney stayed with us. She was lonely when Corbin left, but before the end of 2010, Bear came to stay with us. Laney loves Bear.
I have tons more to say about her, but that would not be 2010 stuff.
Here is her petfinder listing.
That which we call a dog, by any other name would still pee on my carpet.
So, all these foster dogs have names. They have to have a name. They need to go into the rescue records with a name. The vet records need a name. Treatment and medication go to a specific animal by name. Of course, the dogs cannot tell us what their before name was, so they are just given a name.
When Betty came to us, it was pretty clear she had no idea who the fuck “Betty” was. I spent an significant chunk of time just shouting random names at her to see if anything got a reaction, but nothing did. I felt mildly stupid calling out a name to a grown dog, and not having it show any sign of recognition at all. It just feels much stranger than it does with a young puppy. I imagined after about a month the dog thinking, “Oh wait, are you talking to ME? WTF, lady? This would have been a lot easier if you’d just said my name. Nonsensical human.”
The absurdity of it all really hit home the first time I took her to the dog park. We let her off leash and I realized I had no way to ever get her back, other than attempt to catch her eye and make it look like it would be a lot of fun to come over and see me. This was a giant dog park too, with forest and hiking trails, not just a rectangle of dying grass.
The little black puppy who came out of the crate first was named Tori. Umm… No. That didn’t work for me. She came that way from the original organization that took in the litter and split it up between rescues. I told V that we’d need to change that. So, our family picked the name Laney, and V changed it in the rescue records. She knows her name now, but I assume the person who adopts her will change it. Actually, even more bizarre, the original organization first handed off two girl puppies to our rescue, and we expected to get those, but then they came back and switched out one of the girls for Corbin. The other girl puppy? She had been given the same name as my daughter.
Betty was renamed Sammi by her family. I assume by now they can call her back in a dog park no problem. I don’t know what any of the others have been renamed. I know Ellie kept her name, which was definitely path of least resistance since she’d had it for so long she figured out we were talking about her.
We next agreed to take in two babies. Estimated at 6 weeks old, maybe a little less, and less than 4 pounds. I’ve never had extended contact with puppies that young. I’ve never brought home a dog for myself at younger than 12 weeks.
This was also the first time I agreed to take in two fosters at once. Of course, with puppies this young, two is easier than one, but puppies are a lot more time consuming than dogs.
V showed up late at night carrying a crate. My husband was still at work (of course). V set down the crate and opened it and my daughter and I sat on the floor waiting…
First out was a trembling little black puppy, we’ll get back to that one later. Second to appear, was a little black and tan puppy. My daughter was squealing over the tiny black puppy, but my heart skipped a beat when I saw the little tan puppy. It was clear that we’d each have our favorite. The mother was a rat terrier mix and the father was a small shepherd mix. There were 8 puppies total in the litter, which were divided up in pairs to different rescue organizations because nobody could take in all 8.
The black and tan puppy was named Corbin. He took after the father more. He was bigger than his sister in body length and height. He was probably bigger around too, but she certainly was more sausage-y looking. So cute. Then he peed on my rug. Oh well. Still cute.
V gave us the feeding instructions and went on her way, and left of with the two tiny babies, and we started to get to know each other.
Corbin was the more laid back, snuggly, and cautious one. He was sweet and patient with his sister. He was very people focused. He was also growing faster. Some days, it seemed like he got noticeably bigger in one day.
After about a week, a couple came over to meet Corbin. They said very nice things about him, but I did not feel a spark. I told V that I didn’t think they were the one. I was kind of glad too. He was the easier going of the two puppies, and while I hoped both of them would go quickly, and very close to each other, if one was going to be left behind longer, I was hoping it would be him. They were still quite young, the rescue wasn’t going to let either one leave right away.
Then a young woman came to meet both of the puppies. She actually liked the little black one better upon meeting them. When she left I was pretty confident she’d be adopting one of them. Her life was well set up for taking care of a young puppy. She had a doggy daycare lined up for her longer work days. V arranged to go do a home inspection later in the week, and take both of the puppies with her. The woman shared a house with roommates, and they had a dog. So, it would give the rest of the household a chance to meet both puppies.
Corbin won that round, and she decided to adopt him. While she loved the black puppy too, the other dog in the household found the calmer Corbin to be infinitely less annoying.
I had Corbin for a few more days while she purchased her puppy needs and he got just a little bit older. Then she came to pick him up. I gave Corbin a final snuggle and sent him off with her. I’ve heard back that he is doing very well and growing like a weed. The adult dog in the house is still a bit WTF?, but all is good.
He was a very sweet puppy. 🙂