But She’s Not Broken

May 22nd, 2011

This is serious business

She knows something's up

I’m not looking forward to altering my dog. Unfortunately, spay day is fast approaching. Sigh.

*the spay link is graphic… pictures of innards.

I know it’s against the grain and might ruffle a few feathers, but in general, I am not for “fixing” dogs. At least not mine.

I have always felt that it is our responsibility, as her owners, to make sure that she doesn’t get a chance to become “with puppies”. I’m not saying it’s not the boy dog’s owners responsibility too, because it totally is, but first and foremost, it’s ours. And really, it’s pretty darn easy to prevent. Dogs come into season on a (mostly) regular schedule. In general, they start bleeding least a week before they will accept a male. At that moment, you slap on the diapers and put the pup in 24/7 lock down for the next month. Completely doable. Been there, done that. Heck, Rain’s first estrus happened while we were at the slabs, a place notorious for roaming males and unplanned pregnancies.

On the verge of being obsessed

Not interested in growing up

We started discussing the pro and cons almost immediately after she came into our lives. We researched and talked about the increased risk of cancer (osteosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, etc.), incontinence, weight gain, possible mood changes, and surgery complications if we do modify her. The pros are mostly obvious. It would mean less stress for us, a lower chance of breast cancer, no chance of her dying from pyometra (an infection of the uterus), and of course a 0% chance of an unwanted litter.

In addition, Rain requires more run around outside time than my previous dogs who were quite happy chilling and snoozing until it was time to go hunting. It feels cruel keeping her on lock down for the length of time needed to guarantee 100% that there wont be any pups. This reason has more weight than almost all of the others. What good is a long life if she has to spend 1/6 of it on restriction?

We had decided, when she was about two months old, to wait until she had had her first reproductive cycle and was a year old to spay her. It seemed to be the best way to negate the negative effects. But, now that time is here, and I am not happy about it.

Slab City’s Got Talent 2011

February 1st, 2011

We left RTR in Quartzsite just in time to make it to the Slab City Talent Show. The turnout was good. And, even though the crowd seemed a bit more reserved this year, the beer and hippies were both plentiful. The BBC was also in attendance this year. Supposedly, they are making a documentary featuring the slabs.

Here are some images from the event. I have a couple of videos as well, but they are too large to upload on my cellular internet. Once I get a good connection, they will appear on our youtube channel.

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Campsites mentioned in this post:

  • Slab City

      Make Your Own Fire Poi

  • Juggling at Slab City

    February 21st, 2010

    Johnny juggling 3 balls

    I’ve been juggling off and on since I was fourteen, but I never learned much more than a three ball cascade or two balls in one hand. Sure, I could juggle that way indefinitely, but it was kind of boring. This summer in Alaska, I had the good fortune to pick up a juggling book behind a second hand book store free of charge. Suddenly, there were lots of new things to try and a few tricks I had even forgotten about! Combine with lots of free time and stir well.

    These days, I’m up to four balls in a fairly solid pattern. But my three ball juggling has gotten a lot more interesting… at least for me. I learned a handful of new patterns and techniques and then started mixing and matching them, which lead to a few things invented on the spot. I drop things a lot more, but at least I’m not bored!

      Make Your Own Fire Poi
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    Scavenging the Slabs

    January 8th, 2010

    It’s amazing the difference the mountains make. We were literally driving through rain all day until we finally crossed through the mountains into the California desert. Minutes later, it was dry and I was considering whether or not to turn on the air conditioner. Once again, we arrived at Slab City in the dark and were unable to find the primo campsite. So, we just settled for the same site we had last year, pulled in (checking for nails) and staked our claim.

    Unlike last year, we had two bikes and didn’t need to get the scooter out right away. At least, we had two bikes for a couple of hours until Jenn’s pedal came off because it had been put on the wrong side. Back to one bike and two riders, it was time to get the scooter running again.

    Just like last year, it had another fuel leak. This time, however, nearly the entire fuel line was dry rotted and I wasn’t able to clip enough from somewhere else to fix the problem. But, like Leonard Knight says, ‘If you go eight miles out in the desert, you can find anything you need.’

    By way of introducing myself to our neighbors, I wandered over, dodging a vicious puppy, and said, ‘Hey, you know where I can find a piece of fuel line?’ Now, if you’ve ever been looking for some random part in the middle of nowhere, you realize I didn’t really expect anything from this except, just maybe, directions to the nearest auto parts store. Instead, I got directions to the Slab City mechanic.

    Sure enough, when I found him, he was able to scrounge up a bit of vacuum line that was the right size to replace the fuel line on our moped. Sure, it probably won’t last too long, but neither did the cheap rubber on our Chinese moped. The vacuum line, had already survived a car fire, which is more than I can say for the original fuel line.

    We have a few other scavenger hunt projects going on. I hope they all work out half as well as the moped. But either way, it’s an interesting way to meet folks when you get tired of scrounging around the desert and decide to ask directions.

    Slab City or bust!

    April 6th, 2009

    Internut - Slab City Library

    After we left Quartzsite, our next ‘destination’ was Slab City, just outside of Niland, CA. First though, we really had to do some shopping before I broke into the emergency can of baked beans. So, we hit Brawley, which is about twenty miles south of the Slabs. As long as we were in town, Jenn wanted to get some work done on the freecampsites website, so we endured horribly slow internet for a night, under the assumption that we’d have no internet at all once we hit Slab City.

    Go figure. Slab City had the best EVDO connection we’d seen since we left Phoenix. In fact, it’s so good they have an internut connection in the lending library. Speaking of the library, I was really impressed with the selection of books available and found my share very quickly. I rather wish I’d spent more time in the library as I could have dug around for a few gems instead of grabbing the first half dozen titles that looked interesting.

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