Thursday, September 21, 2006


Well, I guess I can post about this now. I told my boss today that the company basically has a week to make good on the promises it has made to me, or I'm leaving.

Honestly, I expect to put in my notice next week, but we'll see what happens. I have an opportunity developing back home in Alabama that I want to jump on, and it needs to happen very quickly -- I can't imagine that my current company is going to come through with anything near what it would take to make me stay.

Blah, moving again. I hate moving. But I hate Idaho even more, so there you go.

Friday, September 08, 2006

The Ahboo Files: Vol. 4

This note was waiting for us when we got home. It has a few pictures of Ahboo on it, which I'll try to get digital copies of so I can post them here.


The Week in Pictures

Ahboo was the perfect host and always did as I asked (well, except for crossing the linoleum floor the first few times!). He met a great playmate at Dog Park. I didn't get photos of them playing together -- the night I brought my camera, "Sammie" didn't show up. But Sammie's parents hope you'll call them and set up future evening get-togethers at the park. Take Ahboo's rope -- I think Sammie and Ahboo would probably really like a game of tug-of-war.

--The Pet Nanny


There's one more chapter left in this gripping saga... But you'll have to wait a bit longer for it to come to its thrilling conclusion.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

It's good to be back, and other self-deluding catch phrases

We're back in Idaho, after a rather uneventful journey home which landed us in Sandpoint at around 1am local time. Getting up for work was pretty tough (and I rolled into the office a bit before lunch -- what a great way to pick up where I left off, eh?).

Ahboo was incredibly happy to see us, and we were happy to find that the groomers were able to de-skunkify him while we were gone. There are still a couple of chapters left in The Ahboo Files, and things are about to get a little more interesting.

My friend David gave us a CD of a bunch of great music I didn't have, and it reminded me that I haven't given any music picks in a while. XM's indie/college radio channel, XMU, continues to expose me to new stuff I wouldn't have heard otherwise. Here are a few albums that I have on constant repeat lately:

Mew - One of my new favorites. Their latest full album, "And the Glass Handed Kites" is a great candidate for playing "spot the influences". In the 14 tracks, you might notice throwbacks to the Pixies, Porcupine Tree, Lush, and even Machina-era Smashing Pumpkins. There's a very epic, spacious quality to their music, which works great with the shoegaze-y vocal delivery. It's a mystery how these guys have been around for eight years and I'm only now hearing about them -- probably has something to do with them being from Denmark and not really being into the whole "publicity thing". Amazing, amazing music.

Her Space Holiday - I picked up several albums, but I think "The Young Machines" is my favorite. I have no idea how to categorize this band. Mix a little bit of downtempo electronica with a dash of indie pop. The songwriting is the real strength here -- it ranges from over-the-top emo to the kind of quirky humor you might expect from bands like Blink 182 or the Bloodhound Gang (neither of which I can stand, mind you), but it's very intelligent and poetic. I don't know how it works, but it does.

DJ Gyngyvytus - Better(?) known as prolific Musician's Lounge regular Zoomzip from the SA Forums, the good DJ brings us "Skeet Spirit: A Crunk Tribute to Radiohead". It is everything it claims to be -- Radiohead as envisioned by the likes of Li'l Jon. And somehow it's incredible. You can download the whole album for free right over here.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Ahboo Files: Vol. 3

We caught up with some of my old high school friends since my last post. Bill and David both have great new houses, and we finally got to meet David's dog Jonas (who is not as much a canine as a primal force of nature). I wish we'd had more time to visit with everyone, but we're on kind of a whirlwind schedule this week, and I know everyone else is busy with the holiday weekend too.

Anyway, here's the next (and final?) installment of The Ahboo Files...


Harness Dress Rehersal

Hi H & C,

Hope you are enjoying home & family visits! The weather here is sunny again, but the mornings remain cool. It's beautiful fall weather.

Ahboo is very relaxed with me now. I no longer need to coax him across the linoleum and outside. I simply open the door and ZOOM - he's off and running!!! Last night I decided to try a dress rehearsal with the harness. He was a perfect gentleman and stepped right in! So I thought, okay, I'll find out what it's like to take him out the front door on the leash. He did great again! So I thought, okay, let's see if he'll get in my car. We had a little trouble with this one (more of a jump? to get in the back of my Subaru I think). I tossed a cookie in, but he was still tentative. I crawled inside and called him in and he was still tentative. But he finally mastered the "jump" into the back of my car so I thought, okay, we've made it this far, let's just go to Dog Park! When we got there, there was a small dog (Boston Terrier / Toy Poodle mix) who's owner's looked nervous about our arrival. I kept Ahboo on his leash while the dogs got acquainted. The dog's owners explained that their dog had recently been attacked three times by bigger dogs so he was nervous around big dogs. I explained that Ahboo was not my dog and I was not positive how he got along with other dogs but I was pretty sure you had told me he was very social and liked to play. The whole time we were having this conversation, the dogs were getting acquainted and couldn't wait to get off their leashes and play. So we turned them loose and boy did they have a good time. "Sammie" is Ahboo's new best friend. Sammie had a squeeky football that they both played chase with. Ahboo was a good playmate and didn't "hog" the toy even though he is probably 10 times bigger than Sammie. Sammie's owners were so delighted to have such a wonderful playmate for their dog (and likewise for me - I didn't have to run or play chase with Ahboo!) so we decided to meet at Dog Park again tonight @ 6pm. I think Ahboo probably slept pretty well last night - he played hard!

--The Pet Nanny

Saturday, September 02, 2006

The Ahboo Files: Vol. 2

We had a great dinner with my friend Alex and his family. Their little son, "Bunbun", could barely pull himself up to standing last time we saw him, and now he's walking, talking, and feeding himself (sort of) like a pro. Caitbug, who we've known since she was a tiny baby, is fully into teenager mode now. Wow, I feel old.

Anyway, here's Ahboo update #2...


Ahboo Relaxing

Hi H & C,

Nothing important. Just wanted to let you know that Ahboo is getting more relaxed about going outside on his own now. Whew! I had to do alot of coaxing and trickery to get him out the first few times. Seemed to work to toss a cookie outside and then tell him "release". He'd run to the door, stop, look at me, and I'd have to repeat the "release" command again. Now I just put a cookie inside his Kong toy and throw it in the back yard - he delights (and succeeds) in getting the cookie out eventually. He seems to like to dine in privacy, so I leave the room while he eats his meals. We've been having a good time playing fetch and chase in the back yard. I'll have time Friday night and over the weekend (probably at noon) to take him to dog park. Ramone is Ramone, but he misses you - he's so-o-o-o blue! :)

The weather is cloudy and cool with rain showers. Yesterday it was only 52 degrees. This A.M. it was 40 degrees - brrrrr. Hope it's warm where you are and you are having a good visit with family!

--The Pet Nanny

The Ahboo Files: Vol. 1

Hello from sunny (humid) Alabama. We're having a great time on vacation, and we're getting to see most of our friends who we haven't seen in over a year. The one downside of going on vacation is that we had to leave Ahboo at home. Fortunately, he's in good hands -- we hired "The Pet Nanny" of Sandpoint to check in on him (and our fish, Ramone) several times a day.

We've been getting constant E-mail updates. Since I don't have much to post here this week (after all, we're hanging out with most of the people who would be reading this), I bring you... The Ahboo Files.


Ahboo's First Day

Hi Hillary & Chris,

I hope you made it to your destination okay and are having a happy reunion with family!

Ahboo was a bit tentative when I come over at noon but I think he had to pee pretty bad because he went out in the yard pretty readily and while out there, he played chase/tag with me.

This evening was a different story! He went out once but rushed back in the house - didn't even pee. He sat in the door to your office and observed my attempts to get him across the linoleum and outside :). So I fed him in his crate to see if that would relax him - I disappeared out of sight while he ate. After he ate, he returned to the office and wouldn't do tricks; chase a ball thrown outside, chase the frisbee thrown outside; not even fetch a cookie tossed outside - nothing, nada, zip! I finally just layed on the floor in the office with him and talked to him. He looked at me with those soft eyes and started to warm up to me and trust me in your absence. Eventually he was licking my hand and arm and getting more comfortable with me so I lured him out with a cookie and shut the door so he couldn't "cop out" on me and go back in the house. He did his bio business and alot of sniffing around and then he was ready to play - and boy was he ready to play!!! We had a blast playing fetch with the tennis ball which went on for quite awhile. I can see where the dog park might be beneficial so he has more room to run and chase balls - maybe tomorrow or the next day when he trusts me enough to put his harness on.

Ramone sure knows when it's his feeding time too - seems to always be there at the hole when I go to drop his pellets in!

--The Pet Nanny