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4 kittens

3D in the Sense of a Water Bottle

Posted on 2017.05.29 at 22:36
(For the sake of continuity: the lice check turned out to be a sanity check. They found one nit in Pokey's hair, and four nits in Rascal's hair, and the rest of us were clean. Maybe we don't have chronic lice infestations after all.)

Our house is currently detached from the pillars it's sitting on. That's pretty creepy.


On Wednesday, they're cutting off the plumbing, water, gas, and air conditioning. But not the electricity - the electrical lines will be given excess slack, and just stay attached. Starting Thursday, they will start jacking it up. Apparently the first inch is the hardest inch, what with friction and things being pressure-bonded. But once it breaks free of that first inch, they lift it pretty quickly. Then they spend a few weeks building new, cement pillars underneath. It'll take longer if it rains a lot.

Another before:

We rented a very cute little cabin, two houses down.  We got incredibly lucky. I was anxious about the whole moving out thing, but it got much more manageable when we saw this house on VRBO.  It turned out the owner also needed a longterm renter for the next month or so, and deals were struck. Cats are allowed. Relief is palpable.

We are even allowed to climb in and out of our house the whole time.  I'm not sure how this is going to work, because the house will be higher than its final resting place. Are we using a ladder? Maybe!


On Friday, I'm going for my first tattoo session. I'm very preoccupied with this. My body is going to be permanently drawn on! What if it looks terrible?

I have finalized my choice of Mama cats:

Although I have fattened her up a bit, for verisimilitude.

Part of the consideration was: do I want a hodge-podge of different artists? Ultimately I decided yes. Daddy cat is by Ferdinand Oger, Mama Cat is by Aurore de la Morinerie, and kittens are by my beloved Clare Turlay Newberry.

What if all my houseplants die from the lack of air conditioning?
What if my tattoos look pretentious and dumb?
What if the tattoos look amazing but the underlying body looks dumb?
What if the lifting of the house drags on for much longer that we are planning? (They told us three weeks. We are giving them eight weeks before we get cranky.)
What if the tattoos hurt really, really bad?
So many questions!


I bruised my ankle at the gym. I was doing a handstand, and whacked my ankle on a bar on the way down. Jammies also bruised his leg, at hockey.


Guess who complained more?

Hawaii also complained, last Wednesday, that her tooth hurt. On Thursday, her face was visibly swollen:

The dentist said that she had cracked a filling in her baby tooth, and it had gotten infected. Poor thing. She will have it pulled this Thursday, and they'll put a spacer in. The dentist would not use the phrase "pull the tooth" or "remove the tooth" or anything direct when she talked to Hawaii - she would only say, "We'll give it a little wiggle." I found this condescending and unhelpful, but your mileage may vary.


We did not go camping this weekend. Some families were struck by illness, storms threatened, parents lacked will to pack up all their shit and drive to the campsite, etc. (Not us. We were packed up and ready to go when plans were cancelled on Friday afternoon. But we weren't entirely sorry to scrap the trip, either.)

Instead we did some of this:

and some of this:

(sometimes when you love someone, you love something because they love it, even if it wouldn't have occurred to you to love it on your own.)

and when the storms did materialize, we were all watching Flight of the Navigator in our sleeping bags, in the pit.


In preparation for my tattoos, I made a 3D model of my body out of paper, and xeroxed the cats to scale.

That is the front. It is 3D in the sense that there's a water bottle sitting in the middle of it, making it not flat. This is the back:

It's not exactly finalized, but that's the general idea.

I also photographed my body, and xeroxed a second set of cats to that scale.  I fully intended to share the body photos, but the reality of my naked body is making me suddenly feel very self-conscious and vulnerable.  I am banking on the fact that I'll be happy and excited and eager to show off the actual tattoos, or else perhaps this is a giant mistake.


This is for sure: our house will look weird and looming and out of place in our neighborhood. I'm not very happy about this.

The lifter told us that there has been a regulatory change, and flood insurance rates are now allowed to increase at 15% a year. Apparently FEMA is sick of people rebuilding in known flood plains. So rates are expected to rise dramatically over the next ten years - people paying a couple hundred dollars a year now will soon be paying 1-2K/year. He thinks that houses along our street will start popping up over the next ten years.

I hope so! Both of our neighbors are small cinderblock houses, where the owner just bleaches it down and hoses it off when it floods, and re-rents it to new tenants. After the floods in 2015, I think that makes you an asshole. The city did pass an ordinance that you must tell your tenants that you're in a flood plain, but new tenants don't know it quite as certainly as the owner knows it. Or if they do, they're renting anyway because they're poor and options are limited. Either way, all of their stuff can be destroyed pretty easily.


pfgechoes at 2017-05-30 11:02 (UTC) (Link)
Wow, that house-lifting looks like a gargantuan source of stress. Do you have to remove all your furniture and your stuff? I can't even begin to imagine.

And your tattoo concept is fantabulous! Is that your torso? (I don't know why I thought this was going to be on your leg.) One of the things that dress makers do that may or may not be helpful is create a body form out of an old tee shirt and duct tape. You put on the tee, wrap yourself snugly with duct tape, and then cut the form off of your body with scissors. Then you can stuff it with crumbled up newspaper. That way, you could really show where you want the forever homes of the members of your cat family to be located.

What about your tattoo artist? You have located someone who does good work? Can you go and sit with them in their studio for awhile to talk about what you want?

heebie_geebie at 2017-06-05 03:46 (UTC) (Link)
I'm eternally sad that my mom got rid of her dress form and a bunch of her fabric that I remembered from childhood. But intrigued by this duct tape thing. If I ever actually got around to making anything.

SO MANY UPDATES. In the morning.
(Anonymous) at 2017-05-30 13:58 (UTC) (Link)
The tattoo is going to look fantastic -- I love the layout.

heebie_geebie at 2017-06-05 03:47 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!!

I'll fill in all the details in the morning, but basically, after the mess on Friday and getting the wind knocked out of my sails, it looks like the best elements of the layout will stay intact. I'm feeling good about things.
Kelly Jennings
Kelly Jennings at 2017-05-30 16:20 (UTC) (Link)


Our dentist -- who we love otherwise -- used to insist on calling the Novocaine shots "bubbles," to the utter scorn of my kid, who finally confronted her on the issue one day. "Why do you call shots bubbles?" she demanded. "I know they're shots."

(She was six or seven at this point.)

The dentist explained how some children were made more afraid by the word shot, which dissatisfied my grumpy child. "Well, I'd rather be told the truth," she grumbled.

Since my dentist is an Evangelical Xtian, this hit home, I'm afraid.

I love the tattoo design, btw! I couldn't figure out what you were planning -- I pictured everything (for some reason) crowded across your chest. This is lovely!

heebie_geebie at 2017-06-05 03:50 (UTC) (Link)

Re: "Wiggle"

This dentist also kept using borderline baby talk to talk to Hawaii. It really annoyed me. She'd say something in the cutesy voice with so many euphemisms that the meaning was lost, and then I'd turn to Hawaii and say bluntly, "In other words, she's talking about whether or not to sedate you before they pull your tooth or just give you laughing gas."

I'm so glad you like the tattoo design! There has been a bit of drama about it. I'll write up all the details when I'm feeling fresher, tomorrow morning.

Edited at 2017-06-05 03:50 am (UTC)
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