Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Midnight...Not A Sounds From The Pavement

Several cats, and their assorted families, call my garden home. This may well be due to the fact that one of my neighbors feeds them daily, dry and canned food, and water. I am somewhat annoyed as they then use the garden as their toilet as well as we have so many flies drawn to their excrement it is difficult to enter the building in the summer. Plus roasting cat poo doesn't smell the best.

My dog, Sharona, however loves the cats. She loves chasing them (conveniently forgetting that as a puppy she got scratched in the eye during a similar game and now has vision problems) and she loves stealing their food. As if she doesn't eat enough at home.

Well, last night I was coming off of Mishmar Ezrachi duty (civil patrol) [more on this later] and I see that one of our garden cats is lying in the street. Obviously he was hit by a car, as he was bleeding, but he was still breathing and moving and in pain. I phoned in to my commander to request permission to fire my gun and put the poor thing out of his misery. Mind you, this would have been dangerous, as the cat was laying on asphalt, and the bullet would have ricocheted unless i aimed at him from the side, so the trajectory would have been parallel to the asphalt. Even then there was lots of traffic. And I've never shot my gun before, except at the range.

My commander said he could not give me permission to discharge the weapon, but instead said to call the municipality who would send a veterinarian over. So we called at around 10 pm. By 10:25 they're not there. Then I remembered that there is a vet who lives on my street, named Doni, though I don't know his number or last name. He once helped me when Sharona was stung by a bee and was in a lot of pain. He was really sweet and after telling me which medicine to give her, even offered to come over and check up on her.

My roomate decided to look up "veterinarian" in the yellow pages and started looking for a doctor named Doni. Lo and behold there was a Doni listed and his cellphone number was there. The number looked familiar, so we called it and it was the right guy. He said he'd be over in like 20 minutes. Meanwhile the cat is still alive and trying to move, and the municipality is nowhere to be found. At some point the chevra kadisha (burial society) van pulled up, and for a minute, I actually thought that the municipality sent the chevra kadisha van for the cat. But no, one of my old neighbors had died.

15 minutes later Dr. Doni shows up, and mercifully puts the cat down. A quick shot to the heart, and he's up in kitty-cat heaven. It was very sad, and all the other cats seemed sad, but that is probably just me projecting. And I'm not even a cat person.

Anyway, the purpose of this whole story is to say thanks to Dr. Doni for coming and helping us out. I guess people who become veterinarians are obviously really good people. Not that this is news, but it was a really nice thing to do. And we're still waiting for the municipality to show up...14 hours later.

I just saw this story . What kind of sick f***s are these kids? Who would raise children to do something like this? I hope someone catches these kids and the violates the 8th Amendment and punishes them well. Like sticking fireworks up their asses and letting them run around.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Caught With their Pants Down

A while ago, a young whippersnapper realized that all this post-September 11th airport security was not really doing its job.

While airport security was busy taking away my eyebrow tweezers (so that if I did take hostages, at least I'd go down in history with well-groomed eyebrows), Nathaniel Heatwole was busy planting boxcutters and modeling clay in the shape of explosives devices on an airplane flying out of Baltimore-Washington International airport. Mind you, he'd taped over the sharp edges of the boxcutters to prevent anyone who found them from accidentally hurting themselves.

After a few days, when no one found the dangerous items (a bit more dangerous than eyebrow pluckers, i'd say) he called it in to the airline. And he had to show them where he hid the items. The items that had made it through our very tough airline security. The items that had hung out on several planes that had been "thoroughly searched on a routine basis".

Instead of airline security saying "Thanks for exposing the gaping flaws in our system, so that we may better protect the American people", they screamed, "Felon!!!" and charged him with a crime that carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.

They did what most guys do when caught with their pants around their ankles. They blame the next guy -- always keep the buck moving. Nathaniel Heatwole did a great service. I'm thinking the judge agreed with me here, since Nathaniel ended up convicted of a misdemeanor and fined $500 plus 100 hours community service. A mere slap on the wrist, but I think Natey deserves a high-five.

I hope someone donates the $500 to Nate. Maybe we should take up a collection.

I am just totally outraged. Its like when I was in school and this girl snuck into the dorms after hours, only to discover a gas tank was leaking poisonous fumes. Instead of punishing her for sneaking in, the dean quickly evacuated everyone at 4 in the morning. I'm not sure if she got a slap on the wrist or not, or even reprimanded. She certainly wasn't really punished at all. The big difference here is, it wasn't the dean's negligence that caused the gas leak. I am sure that if it was his fault, he would have given the girl all the riches in the world.

Anyway, hats off to you, Nathaniel Heatwole. You're a hero in my book.

Monday, June 28, 2004

So I Broke Up With My Boyfriend

Again. For the umpteenth/third time. Umpteenth if you count all the times i told him "This is over" and 8 hours later we were crying in each other's arms. Third if you count serious, long, "real" breakups where I (though not him) dated other people and tried (quite unsuccessfully) to move on.

Its been almost 2 years now since I sat down next to a stranger at a lunch at an almost-stranger's house and 3 days later that stranger called me. I'd been in Israel for 3 weeks, and had been introduced to so many new faces I couldn't keep track. So when this stranger called me and said "Hi, this is D., I met you at Shabbat lunch" I had to comb my memory to figure out which D. it was. He asked me out for dinner, and from then on we were an item. Typical D., his credit card got rejected when he tried to pay for dinner, and though that would normally turn me off (come on people, be prepared!) somehow it didn't matter. [it turned out that there was a problem with the magnetic strip -- not that he was destitute and unprepared/expected a free meal]

Three weeks later he told me he loved me. Though I didn't tell him, I could picture us watching the grandkids playing in the yard. He went off to Egypt for a month, and though I was scared, I went to visit him. At some point I told him about the grandkids...and that was the end of the idyllic phase. Since that point we have broken up now 3 times over why he doesn't want to get married. In 2 years I have heard every reason under the's too stressful, work's not going anywhere, i'm not ready (honest), we're not ready, you're not ready, wait 'til you meet my parents, wait 'til my parents leave.

D. obviously just doesn't want to get married...either not now or not to me. Or maybe not at all. He swears otherwise, and often tells me "I'll do it...soon". Problem is, soon hasn't happened yet. And while I am don't hear my biological clock ticking yet, I don't want to be in a relationship that could not culminate in marriage. I wouldn't date someone I could never settle down with -- like a non-co-religionist or someone who hates dogs (I have a lovable, fluffy best friend). So I feel like D. is never going to want to get married and will always have another reason/excuse why he can't.

On the other hand, I love him. I think we're past the heart-thumping, sweaty palms kind of love of my "youth", but we have a more mature kind of love. And though I tell him frequently otherwise, I know he loves me. Neither of us is perfect (heck, who is?) and we both have our faults, but we love each other. He's patient, kind to others, deeply intelligent, mostly openminded.

I wish I could say "we love each other, i'm in no rush, i'll just wait". But this standing-still-in-one-place has taken a massive toll on our relationship. I firmly believe a relationship has to always be moving to be successful. And we're up against a brick wall. Its been 2 years and we've got nowhere to go anymore. And instead of moving forwards, we're going backwards. I'm pissed and I pick fights for no good reasons. Or maybe there's a reason, but it doesn't warrant the fight we have. Its getting to the point where I can't remember why I wanted to marry him after all. And he's thinking "If she's gonna get on my case because I didn't call when she thought I said I would, can you imagine what the next 60 or 70 years would be like with her?"

So, folks who have far more experience than this little Jerusalemite, any suggestions? I've already heard from the "take no prisoners, you deserve better, i'm cynical and just want a ring on my finger" crowd, so now I'd like to hear from the romantics in the crowd.