Friday, January 29, 2016

My dog is like a child & reasons why I can use that comparison

I've heard moms of human babies say things like, dogs are not the same as babies, there is no comparison, babies are so much harder, dogs are so easy to take care of, just put the dog outside, and so on, and so forth. Well, I am here to say that I completely disagree with you, moms of human babies. I am a dog mom. And it's a real thing. I am not his owner or his keeper...I am his mom. When I call my dog's daycare I tell them, Hi, this is Louis' mom and I'd like to make a reservation for him. I am not here to argue that dogs are more of a responsibility or harder to take care of than babies. I am not a human baby mom, but I am well aware that babies are hard to take care of (that's probably why I don't have human kids). It's an exhausting job, I understand that. I am one of four children and to this day I don't know how my mom did it. I've seen 16 & Pregnant, OK? Thanks, MTV. I get it. 

I am here to share my point of view to the human baby moms who say there is no comparison between taking care of a baby and a dog... because there most definitely is (in my opinion - don't get all judge-y on me - hashtag eye roll). 

Let's start off with puppies. Brand new baby puppies. These adorable angel babies need care, nurturing, love, compassion, training, and all of the other stuff in between. They cannot function without their human mother. They need to be taught, they need to learn, they need discipline. The same goes for a baby. Babies need the same care, nurturing, love, and compassion that my puppy needs. Similarity number one, of many...Check. 

Again, let me stress this so human moms don't hate me, I am not arguing that dogs are harder to take care of then children, I repeat. I am doing no such thing. 

Babies cry. All the time. Dogs also cry (or whine) when they need something and want attention. You can't ignore either one. Dogs need attention just like babies do. 

Dogs poop. Usually, they go outside to do their business, so yes, that is way easier on dog moms than human moms. Babies poop in diapers, a lot, and it can be very messy, I get it. But, there will be those occasions where my dog will have a #1 or #2 accident in the house (he's sick, ate something weird, etc., etc.). and will do his business right there on the floor. He just won't be able to help it. Better yet, he goes right on the carpet. That's always a fun one to clean up. 

Speaking of cleaning up bodily fluids...Babies not only poop but they also throw up, a lot. A lot more than a dog does. However, if you have a sick dog, a large sick dog, you'll be surprised at how much vomit they are able to produce. 

For example, my dog son Louis (almost 2 years old, or in human mom terms, 24 months) was recently really sick. He was throwing up white foam for a solid 24-hours. And I was panicking. He couldn't eat, he had zero energy, it was pitiful. We still crate him during the day, so I had to work from home for two days (unexpectedly, obviously) in order to take care of him. You can't leave a vomiting dog alone in a crate all day, or even outside in the yard for that matter. Would you leave your baby outside or alone in their crib if they were constantly vomiting? No. That's just mean. Anyway, he was throwing up so often that I couldn't clean it up fast enough, so I had piles of dog vomit all over my house.  I had to cover each spot with a paper towel so I wouldn't step on it before I was able to clean it up. Sound familiar, human moms? Vomit? Everywhere? Yeah, it was unpleasant. 

Having a dogs is also similar to having a baby because they cannot tell you what's wrong. They can't tell you what hurts. They can't tell you that they don't feel well. Babies will at least grow up to have a voice. My dog will never be able to talk to me. Side Note: I want to teach him to text, but that's a whole other thing. 

My recent visit to the vet ended with a $600.00 bill. Yeah, that's not a typo. Again, I am not a human mom so I do not know how much it costs each time you take your child to see the pediatrician, but human moms...when was the last time your child had a non life-threatening cold/flu/ear infection/stomach virus/etc. and you spent $600.00 out of pocket at the doctor's office? That $600.00 got me two vet visits, an X-ray, blood work, and a shot to help him stop vomiting. And the best part is, they had no answer as to why he wasn't feeling well. His GI Tract was slightly inflamed, but that's all they could tell me. Thankfully, after a very sleepless week for me, (I cried a lot to Luke (who was out of town) saying, and I quote, "I don't want him to die. What if he dies?") he was better and back to his energetic-self, but $600.00 and not even a legitimate diagnosis? Yeah. 

More comparisons that come to mind...
  1. Food :: My dog is fed at least three times a day. I buy him the expensive $50+ (for one 24 pound bag of food) Grain-Free Salmon dry dog food. He has a grain allergy (he gets very itchy) so I have to buy him special food...Babies also eat several times a day. 
  2. Bathing :: My dog needs a bath on a regular basis...So do children. That includes brushing teeth, cleaning ears, trimming nails, etc. 
  3. Toys :: I buy my dog a lot of toys and spend a lot of money on them. He's a dog so he rips them up after a few days or weeks if I buy cheap ones, which means I tend to buy him the expensive toys (Kong) so they can hopefully last for a while. I also buy him Rawhide bones (NOT NYLABONE) and he can eat one of those in a matter of hours. A bag of them does not last long at our house. Side Note: If you buy your dogs Nylabone, stop it. Stop it now. Dogs can obviously choke on basically anything if you don't watch them, sounds like another comparison to a baby...but Nylabone is bad. If you keep buying them for your dog I will punch you...Babies also play with toys. A lot of toys. But when women are pregnant, people throw them baby showers (which I think is great) and friends and family buy them toys, clothes, diapers, etc. Again, more expensive than a dog, but where are the dog mom baby showers at?! I am only half kidding about that...
  4. Daycare :: My dog goes to daycare. It's not as expensive as human baby daycare, but he goes and I have to pay for it...A lot of babies also go to daycare, unless families are fortunate enough to have a stay-at-home mom. My mom was a stay-at-home mom and I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. 
This is oh-so accurate.
Other things I happily do for my dog: I give him fresh water several times a day (I'll even give him filtered water), I wash his blankets that we put in his "house" (crate) on a regular basis, I have to vacuum up his hair all the time, I let him in and out and in and out and in and out of the house constantly to play/poop/pee/eat grass/flirt with the neighbor dog, Bella/play with the neighbor kid, Adrian/play in the snow/dig up the plants/run around in circles like a spaz/bark at the construction workers/bark at the neighbor dogs/bark at people walking on the sidewalk/bark when the wind blows, I play fetch with him, I play tug of war with him, I clean the stuffing up off of the floor when he rips it out of his toys, I have to mop the kitchen floor because he gets muddy paw prints everywhere, the list is endless. 

I worry about my dog just like I would worry about a child...Is he OK? Is he happy? What if he's hungry? Did I feed him enough today? Did I feed him too much today? Is he lonely? Is he sad? Does he hate his "house"? Is he mad/sad when I leave for work every day? Why does he seem sluggish? Could he be sick? Did he eat something he shouldn't have? Maybe he is tired? Did he get hurt? Does he have fleas? What if he gets bit by a tick? Am I paying enough attention to him?  Why is he itching so much? Does he have an allergy? Did I schedule his vet visit? Is he up-to-date on his vaccines? Is he too hot? Is he thirsty?...I could go on, and on, and on. 

Basically, I love my dog more than I thought I could ever love something with four legs. I love him more than I even like most people. I hug him, kiss him, give him belly rubs, and leg massages (yeah, you read that right) on a daily basis. He needs me and cannot get through his day without me. He relies on me and trusts me 100% of the time. 

Moral of the story...Love your dog like you'd love your child, and love your child like you'd love your dog. 

And adopt (dogs or children), don't shop! 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Starbucks Stakeout

I go to Starbucks a lot. I mean really, a lot. I go on a regular basis Monday thru Friday. And sometimes Saturday and Sunday. I have a bit of a problem. I buy a lot of coffee and spend a lot of money. Granted, I usually buy a boring cup of coffee and add some half and half in there, but that $1.95 per however many days a week I go (and sometimes weekends) tends to add up. And when I am feeling really crazy I may just buy a grande non-fat iced white mocha, no whip. Those suckers cost a whopping $4.00! And if I am really, really feeling crazy I will buy a pastry. A 900 million calorie pastry, give or take a few. I need an intervention.

Anyway, because I go to Starbucks too much I tend to run into the same people from day to day. I have even made friends with the baristas. We are such close, best friends now that they know my boring order by heart and I get smiley faces on my coffee cup (this was new today). Aside from the baristas, I see the same customers in my Starbucks everytime. Yes, my Starbucks. I spend enough money there, so it's mine.

Anyway, so these people I speak of, well, I have had some interesting morning experiences with them. There was a lady once who started talking about how she liked my outfit in line. It's early, so I usually don't want to talk to anyone. I just want to get my coffee and go. Well this old lady kept at it. We end up exchanging cards and later that day I get an email from her. Of course, her "business" wants me to do business with them. Um, no. Next.

This was a fun one...For those of you that aren't familiar with Stockton should know that there aren't many attractive men living around these parts. I have lived here two years so I think I have the right to judge Stockton. So there, I did it. Well to my surprise a few months ago I walk into the Starbs and see two very nice looking dudes. I of course wasn't going to approach them so I go about my business, get my coffee and them BAM! They both approach me stalker style. It seemed a bit odd to me, but I just went with it. It was almost like they were on a girl stakeout. I heard them out, only because they were cute, and somehow my phone number ended up in one of their hands. I don't even remember their names now. Well, there was a short one and a tall one. The short one asked me out. I said OK and went on my way. So of course when I got to work I Facebook stalked the heck out of them. Long story short here, I never went out with the short one. He made no effort to get together, he expected me to do all the work. Uh no thanks. And in a text ohe blurts out he has a kid like it's no biggie. Thanks, I will pass.

Well since this kid wasn't making a big enough move, his tall friend moved in for the kill. He asked me out but nothing came from any of it. It has been several months since all this happened and I haven't seen either one since. Oh darn. Moving on.

Next up comes some older dudes. First there is one middle-aged man who is always dressed pretty nicely. I am assuming he has a job. He has this little thing we like to call a wedding ring on his left ring finger, so I figure he is pretty harmless. Nope. He strikes up conversation which is fine, I guess. Remember, I don't really want to talk to random people in the morning, but I don't have it in me to be a mega bitch to strangers most of the time. Well on several occasions now he INSISTS on buying my coffee. I think this has happend twice now. It is a nice gesture, I guess, but I don't really want him doing this. It's awkward. What if I am having one of my crazy days and I want a venti drink and 6 pastries and this dude tells the cashier "and whatever she wants." I can't tell her I want all that. Or can I? Maybe I should do that one day and then he won't ever want to buy my stuff again....Hmmm...Oh, and this dude "friended" me on Facebook. No good. Maybe I should friend his wife on Facebook?

And then there was today. Before I tell you about my Starbs adventure today let me back up a little bit. There is the old guy, like grandparent old. He is a nice guy, but weird. Can you be nice and weird at the same time? Well one day he starts to talk to me. About his job or something? I don't really know. This proves how much I don't pay attention. Well, the past few days I have been seeing him again. I really don't want to talk to him, but he stakes me out and approaches me, and I have no way to get away from him until I get my coffee. Even then, he follows me to the half and half table and continutes to talk, and give me his "card". Well today I see him walking to his car as I am pulling into the parking lot. I really hope he doesn't see me, but of course, he does. I was hoping he wouldn't approach me today, but he creeper level reached a new high today. He comes up to me as I am getting out of my car. Dude, don't do that! And then he proceeds to say "we should go to lunch sometime." Oh gah. This is my nightmare. And with my ability to not say no, I say OK. But this OK actually means No way in hell, dude! At this point I think he was waiting for me to give him my card or something, but I quickly tell him I have his card and then I briskly walk in to Starbucks. And then the one barista asks when he and I are going to go to lunch. Two Starbucks lunch offers in one morning. Happy Friday to me!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Working in a "Man's World"

As much as I absolutely hate to admit it, the sports industry is primarily a “man’s world”. But does that mean women shouldn’t be allowed to be a part of it? We have every right to be a part of it, right? The answer is definitely a yes. Working in the sports industry is hard. First, it’s hard to get in, and once you are in, it’s hard to stay in, especially for women. We really have to stand up for ourselves and take a lot of crap. And from what I have experienced in the past four years, it can be especially tough in the baseball industry. But what I want to know is why a lot of men think women shouldn’t work in sports. Do they think we are all “cleat chasers”? If women get this title, what are middle-aged men called who are trying to get the autograph of a 19-year-old kid? And who came up with the name “cleat chaser” anyway? It’s dumb.

After working three seasons in baseball and one in hockey, working in baseball is by far the most demanding job I have ever had. We work long hours…very long hours. Sometimes I think I should have a bed in my office from April thru September. I am here more than I am at my own apartment. Why would someone, man or woman, want to work such crazy hours for any other reason then they love their job? Do guys really think we work in baseball just to stare at minor league athletes in tight pants? Is it really that surprising that women really do like baseball? Hey guys, guess what? I do!  

I take a lot of pride in my job. A lot of work goes in to preparing for a six month long baseball season. Most people I talk to don’t realize that I still work here in the off-season, too. What I love most about working in baseball is the behind-the-scenes aspect of it. Like I just mentioned, there is a lot that goes in to preparing for a game and fans don’t see all of that. They walk thru the gates ready to watch some baseball without realizing all that was done in order for those gates to open.

Did I mention how much work it is? Yep, I think I did.  And not just sitting-at-my-desk work. It’s literally getting-my-hands-dirty work. I pull tarp in the rain with the guys. I pick up hundreds of fireworks with the guys. None of us like to do it, including the guys, but hey, it’s part of the gig. Just because I wear dresses and high heels and get my nails done doesn’t mean I won’t get dirty. But at the end of the day my job is FUN. How many people can say that? I bet Mr. Bank Man doesn’t have as much fun at his job.

Working with the players though is a whole other story. I had an interesting experience the other day that I found very amusing but annoying at the same time. I was sitting outside watching our guys take batting practice, minding my own business and drawing absolutely no attention to myself. A guy from the visiting team, for whatever reason, thought it would be cool to start blowing kisses at me as he walked in to the dugout. I was so overtaken by desire that I jumped out of my seat, ran down to him, threw my arms around him and we lived happily ever after. Wrong! Dude, what was going thru your head when you decided to do that? What did you think was going to happen? Absolutely nothing. You just slightly annoyed me and provoked me to make fun of you behind your back with my coworkers.    

Here is where this subject gets a little tricky for me. I absolutely, without a doubt in my mind, believe women have every right to work in sports right alongside the guys. I think I’ve made this very clear by now. But should there be any boundaries? At my previous baseball job I was working in public relations. This meant that I had to make frequent trips in to the clubhouse. At first, it was a little awkward, and the guys would make sure they made it as awkward as possible. It got to the point, though, where I was able to ignore their, well, inappropriateness. Would they act like that if a male staff member went in to the clubhouse? Yeah, I don’t think so. Like Mr. Kissy Pants I talked about above, just because you try to get my attention in a weird, obnoxious way, doesn’t mean I am going to pay any attention to you, come on now.

I had the opportunity to observe a post-game interview in a major league clubhouse a few years ago. One of the coolest experiences of my baseball career thus far, but also one of the most intimidating. Was it the fact that they were all major league guys standing around in towels that intimidated me? I don’t know. If you know me at all, or have seen me make a fool of myself at any Ports game, you know I am by no means a shy, timid person. Why then did I let this moment leave me hovering off to the side hoping no one noticed me? How would a male feel in this situation? I definitely think that random Joe- off-the-street baseball fan might react the exact same way as I did. Us average folks aren’t used to hanging out in a major league clubhouse. I know a lot of guys who are obsessed with baseball…collect-every-baseball-card-on-the-planet obsessed. How do you think Mr. Super Fan would react if he walked in to a major league clubhouse and his baseball idol was standing five feet in front of him? Awkward and slightly uncomfortable? I think so. But hey, what do I know? 

I could go on and on about this topic so, I am going to come to the conclusion that all guys on the outside looking in are just jealous of my job. I have a pretty sweet job, I know. I get to watch baseball for a living and they don’t. So take that, boys!