The Struggle is Teal, Duct Tape Politics and The Coolest Cat in the Room


If you Google the color teal, you’ll find that it dovetails nicely with such peaceful propositions as clarity, inspiration, communication and perhaps most importantly of all, healing.

Inside a year where we have lost so much, Imma go with peaceful propositions for the much needed return they’ll supply on the investment. I mean, you really don’t even have to walk out your front door to get sushi rolled. All you have to do is turn on your laptop, log into WordPress and boom . . .

“The New WordPress Editor is Coming” . .

To which my reply is always a succinct Fuck you

I like to think Herman Melville would smile at such a response as that. After which he’d reel in a couple dozen words that say it so much prettier. He was brilliant like that.

I’m simply singing off the sheet of music 2020 handed out. It’s a song sheet that, to borrow from the treasure trove of Yogi (as in Berra) Isms, got late pretty early on. What with the one hundred and one Democratic candidates for President that led things off by punching holes in their own ship. To casualties of a novel virus that held the world hostage. To protests and politicization and a country so polar opposite in its opinions and beliefs that we may just have to get a big old roll of duct tape and pluck it right down the middle of the country.

All you have to do is fire up your electronic device in order to get questions to all the many answers. But wait! There’s more . . .

  • Like, does the MLB understand how repulsive it looks? A multi-billion dollar industry is once again at a loss as to how it seasons its stake while millions of people worry about how to make ends meet. And if there ends up not being a baseball season after all this? Well, let’s just say that if they thought the fan revolt was bad after their impasse canceled the World Series in ’94. Oh . . just wait.
  • And uh . . I don’t miss sports nearly as much as I thought I would. There, I said it.
  • I do miss eating out, which I did for the first time in months last Friday with my kids. Outdoor seating, retrofitted engagements . . but still. I liked not having to think up my dinner for the first time since March happened.
  • Don’t tell anybody, but there’s a Presidential election five months from now.
  • I’m on the fence about starting a food blog. On the fence because it would mostly be me re-blogging real food blog posts. I would contribute my own dishes from time to time as well. And it would all take place off my old blog, Drinks Well With Others.
  • As for my exercise regimen, that’s what I focused on over the last few months. When you suffer from depression and are plenty fine with not being around people . . . but you’re not so fine being told you can’t be around people . . . well, I needed a strategy. So six times a week, I’m going strong with some form of exercise- stationary bike, running, weights, Rob Zombie workouts . . . and it’s gotten me to a better place. Physically, sure. But even more importantly, my brain is being fed some positive chow.
  • Which means that junk food has become that player at the end of the bench. I summon it on “Cheat Day” but otherwise it ain’t got a regular spot in my daily lineup.

And then there’s this. Because 2020 has been the rainy season that keeps on taking. We lost our beloved black cat Mr Speaker a few weeks ago. And for most of the time since then, I thought about all the parts of me that he took with him to the great beyond. His little life was so much more to us. It was big and bold and it spoke countless millions of words in the language of purr. And this magnificent beast will always be the coolest cat in the room to me.

So to this, I had to figure out a way to shake the yesterdays we left behind. And then these two brilliant little messes showed up. My daughter is in Wyoming through July visiting her mother. I plan on surprising her with the dynamic duo in a video call this week. I’ve named the boy Jack, an homage to Mr Speaker. She gets to name the girl.

And as Vonnegut used to say, so it goes. That we move forward. Carrying the things we used to know and love inside this good long while of a life. These things that make us laugh and cry, and think and pray and dream to the stars up in the sky whose lives we used to share.

Good night, sweet prince.



75 thoughts on “The Struggle is Teal, Duct Tape Politics and The Coolest Cat in the Room

  1. B,

    First off, let me curse and swear that my comment distappeared… And let me say FUCK! Coz you know I put some effort… Let’s see if I can duplicate this.

    What a great picture of Mr. Speaker!

    Of course I had to Google Teal and then went down a rabbit hole until I brought myself up and back here. I’ll take your definition because it is so lovely. So yes, let’s go with peaceful propositions and big FUCK YOU to Gutenberg.

    “I’m simply singing off the music 2020 handed out.” Damn, you do this so beautifully and I think Melville would approve. Just sayin’.

    – MLB – again “seasons its stake” – brilliant. And they are totally disgusting.
    – Did you? You did.
    – I miss eating out and still haven’t done so – and no, eating two steamies (hot dogs) and fries on the edge of a bench outside of a fast food joint, don’t count.
    – Presidential election – gonna be inneresting, right?
    – Get off the fence. You know I’ll play with ya.
    – Way to go on the exercise regimen. Taking care of your outer, your inner, your body, your head is a good thing… and you’re looking fine, I might add.
    – Junk food should always be that treat you have once in a blue moon anyway.

    I am so sorry about Mr. Speaker. He was definitely the coolest cat in your room. Losing a pet is losing a member of your family. Sometimes we realise just how much they played a role only when they’re gone.

    And what?? How come YOU can load a video but I couldn’t? (Way back when with the church bells). Whatever. Jack and Nameless-For-Now are adorable and will keep you good company as they chase each other at the worse hours possible, down hallways, over furniture, between your feet…

    So it goes indeed. Beautifully done, Lovely.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Q,

      That totally blows, because yes, you do put a great deal of effort into your comments each and every time. And no worries here, I knew you would go above and beyond on your second swing.

      He loved playing Mufasa, always sitting atop a perch and looking out over his kingdom.

      It was my rabbit hole search of teal that brought me to the psychology of color branding. That’s where I found all that cool stuff about the color.

      Gutenberg, Schmutenberg is what I say . . .

      I would love to make old Herman proud of me for loving the words so much.

      The MLB is blowing it. I get that the owners are making matters worse, but the players have to understand that a lost season is going to be bad for them too. It will drive more fans from the game, and baseball cannot afford such a prospect.

      I did.

      It was nice to sit out somewhere and get served. No dishes . . even better.

      I’m concerned as to the lack of conversation on this front. Methinks some underhanded shit might be in the works.


      I’m getting there. I have tiers as per my goals and so there is always something else to shoot for.

      And I do. But I have really cut down on the crap. Snacking was always a problem for me, so I’m more mindful of it now.

      I miss the guy so much. He was quite the character, and I related to his ornery ways, very much so.

      They came out to socialize this morning. Surprisingly, Jack was more outgoing early on. But the girl, she’s already playing me . . I just have a feeling.

      Thank you for the lovely chime. As per.


      Liked by 1 person

      • It does, but I think I did okay ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Love that.. Mufasa!

        I arrived there ๐Ÿ˜‰ But you put it all together so eloquently.

        Schnell Gutenberg!

        I’m sure he would have been.

        Seriously. It’s not like they are looking for quarters in their couches to buy a loaf of bread and yes, a lost season affects all. And you did!

        I think I’ll have to make that happen – go to a restaurant, that is.

        I know, right? What is really going on in politics – citizens have the right to know.

        As if you doubted it.

        Which is great. The tiers don’t have to have the same heft. Each one is important in itself.

        It is a good thing to cut down on. Honestly, there is nothing good in that shit except for the momentary pleasure in the mouth.

        Sounds like he was very much like his two-legged co-habitant ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Love it. And of course the girl is playing you… I’ve no doubt of it.


        Liked by 1 person

        • You did way better than okay.

          Yes he was Mufasa, and he played it up for all it was worth, LOL.

          You are a sweet talker.

          No Blockheads allowed, right?

          Me too.

          When they canceled the World Series in ’94, it took years for the game to get back. I don’t think it comes back the same way this time if they cancel the season.

          It’s kinda nice. ๐Ÿ˜‰

          I have a bad feeling about this whole thing.

          Okay, mebe not

          That’s right, it’s just a matter of having goals. Be they ambitious, simple or sometimes a little of both.

          I’ve been much better about things. Popcorn has become a nice replacement for chips. And my sweet tooth ain’t what it used to be.

          Ya think?

          I know she is! And there isn’t a damn thing I can do about it . . .


          Liked by 1 person

  2. So sorry you had to say goodbye to Mr. Speaker. I can only imagine your grief and sense of loss. He clearly filled your life and your heart, yet left a little space open for Jack and she-who-is-yet-to-be-named to keep his work going.

    Exercise. Isn’t it the best antidote for most of what ails us? I don’t know how I’d survive without it. These days, it’s my runs and hikes with my dogs (or stationary bike rides when the weather’s awful, like this morning) that get my head on straight at the start of each day. But I’m not giving up my junk food! I run, therefore I can eat whatever I want. Mostly. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • RW,

      It was, is, will be tough for a while. I remember looking at the clock when the vet told me he was gone, and it was 3:19. I won’t forget the number.

      Mr Jack Speaker left some big paw prints to fill. But these two are destined to do the man proud, I’m sure of it.

      I realized how much I need exercise during this shelter in place. Without it, I would have been a train wreck. It centers me like few other things can, and on the rare occasions when I had to miss a day, I felt it.

      Junk food is NOT completely out of the picture. But it has been curtailed to a large degree.

      Thank you for the lovely comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. So sorry about your loss of Mr. Speaker. I have had the same experience and know how much it hurts. Sometimes people try to make you feel better with the bromide, “It’s just a cat (or dog) No way Jose. That beautiful being was part of me and that piece is now gone. Sure I’ll look back someday and remember the fun times without crying my eyes out, but shit it takes quite a while for that to happen. I still have an ache for the recent beautiful little souls I have had to hug goodbye. Yes but with your tow newbies there magically opens another portal to your heart and a chance to fall in love all over again. Jack and the girl are adorable and they are there just for you. Thanks, for sharing Pilgrim.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Squeals!! I mean purrrrrrrs. Those two little fur balls are adorable. While I’m allergic as all get out, I can never seem to get enough of at least watching ‘tigers’ going at it. Adorably precious. Love the dark one though the ginger seems to have quite the vicious right. Congrats on adopting the pair; may they bring joy and happiness to you and yours and help fill the void Mr. Speaker left. ๐Ÿ’™

    2020…yeah you can take it…preferable across the tracks for disposal. That old saying, things are never so bad they can’t get worse sure seems to pretty much nail it these days. While I’m a diehard fan of unions as a general rule (you can thank unions for the 40 hour work week, paid vacays, etc.) I find police and players unions seem to be in league with the devil. Do not understand how it is they can get away with defending the vile within their ranks (all too often reinstating the miscreants to continue in their obscene ways). WTH?! Collective bargaining agreements sure, but policing, defending the worst of their ranks and keeping them hidden behind the union walls, umm…not so much. MLB in particular just never seems to learn. Their arrogance seems to only be outweighed by their pomposity.

    P.S. Kudos on the exercise regimen. Sadly this introvert decided sugar and alcohol should be sufficient whilst coping *sigh* and probably would more than benefit from your food posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Monika,

      The girl is SO funky, I love it! And Jack so far has proven to be the more ambitious of the two, but methinks sister is still testing the waters and will be ruling the roost before long. They hid all night but came out to play today.

      Mr Speaker . . . they will hear many stories.

      I totally agree. If they’re only using the power of the union to wield it against what is right, then hell . . . they can’t argue with the revolt. And the MLB is in danger of losing the fans that came back after the last strike. I go to one game a year and buy no merch, so I’m not important to their bottom line one way or the other. But plenty of fans will say goodbye if they don’t get their act straight.

      I dig food blogs very much. I might just have to do it.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. First off … I decided to give the new WP editor a try. It was on a post for which I wanted to include a number of photographs. For an upgrade that is supposed to be all about making it easier to include media in posts … I am still looking for the way to do that.

    Sports … I thought that I would miss sports, particularly with retirement and having more free time. Guess what? I don’t. Hardly at all, and somehow I think if I was spending time watching games on TV, I’d be annoyed with myself. I don’t know why, but I just don’t really care anymore. I miss the water cooler talk about sports, but actually watching games and reading about them? Nah. And baseball? It’s always been my favorite sport, but I just don’t think I can take the idiocy anymore. Which goes for the NFL as well.

    Eating out … I’ve been out to dinner twice in the last couple of weeks. Once with my son when I was helping him move his stuff back home. We went to a new brewery in Chico that also made pizza. The set up was pretty comfortable. Tables well spread out, every employee masked, and diners instructed to stay at their table. The following weekend, the wife and I went to a “family and friends” opening for a new restaurant. They did a good job of spreading people out, both within the restaurant and also by spacing out the times people were to come and eat. The staff wore masks, but virtually no customers did whether inside or outside the restaurant. Other than that … it’s been all eating at home, and I am sooooooo tired of trying to figure out what to fix for meals morning, noon, and night. But, I don’t know when I’ll be back in the routine of going out to eat just to go out to eat, as frequently as we once did.

    This weekend we’re going out to dinner for my mother-in-law’s 92nd birthday. Nobody seems willing to say, “hmmm, maybe she shouldn’t be going to a restaurant right now, given her age.” And I really don’t want to go, but go I will.

    The kittens … I’ve never been a cat person, but my older son got a cat and that cat occupied our house for a couple of years recently. I came to like the cat, because he was quiet and unobtrusive, unlike the two yappy dogs we have. So … I’m starting to think that maybe I should get a cat some day, but watching your video makes me realize that I need two, so they can play with each other. Too cute.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And why??? I don’t get it, and I’ll stick to the standard admin if and when they carry through with this threat.

      Sports is just that for me as well. Something to talk on, but I catch games sporadically as it is. And really, when you look at sports in general, the next gen’s interest in them is somewhat different from ours. It’s a passion for some, but for many others it’s all about wagering and fantasy sports. The dynamic has changed. Football is most popular because it lends itself to these things.

      I don’t either. I enjoy cooking, and I enjoy making shit up when I don’t feel like cooking. Going out to eat is a treat, a “I don’t have to do a damn thing but charge it” kind of treat. And the social aspect, when that returns, will lead to dinners with friends but I can do just as well with going out for drinks with friends after I cook something up at home.

      All the things we think about now. Our expectations have changed . . .

      I am a dog/cat person. But there was something about Mr Speaker, dude. He just got me, LOL. He sensed when I needed to be left the hell alone and he also sensed when he needed to hop up on Pop and just stay a while. We mirrored each other in a lot of ways. Ornery and given to solitary endeavors.

      The chirren are starting to come around after hiding out for a while.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Dude. Iโ€™m so sorry about your cat. That just sucks epically. Itโ€™s tough losing a pet so Iโ€™m so sorry for the sadness you went through and continue to go through. But I am glad that you found an outlet in exercise and got into a routine to help clear your head. I always feel better after a run, swing, ride, or a couple rounds with my gloves. It just releases something inside that helps me deal with the day. Plus you were able to eat out!!! Good for you! We just went out, sort of. Car hop service, for burgers and milkshakes. I felt all Richie Cunningham at the hop. And Iโ€™m with you! First time I hadnโ€™t cooked a meal in weeks!!! And it was awesome. MLB? NFL? I canโ€™t with those guys. I canโ€™t. But you know what would be awesome… You. Food. And Drinks Well With Others. Or even here. That would be great! Thanks for sharing! Stay safe. Sunshine and Waves ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Cali. Mr Speaker was one of a kind magnificence. My cat, yanno? Saw me through a lot.

      Exercise has been a beautiful thing for me. Doing the things I haven’t done in far too long a time. I mean, I’ve hardly ever NOT had some form of exercise since I was in my twenties and had let myself go. But this time has allowed me to step it up, and I dig the results.

      Wait, you box? Did I know this?

      I like the car hop service!

      The MLB is wrong, players and owners . . the whole lot of them. Players want fully pay, owners want us to feel sorry for them because they ain’t getting TV money . . even though they screw the fans over FOR that TV money when the games are going on. Nope, I don’t have a side. I blame both sides.

      I love that you said that because Imma do it .

      You stay safe chica.

      Sunshine and Waves


  7. Sorry to hear about your cat. Wee kittens look cute though. Sure your daughter will love them. Hope wordpress doesn’t start messing me about. If it does, I’m putting them straight on to you. No mistake. Cheers my friend

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Aw, Mr. Speaker looked magnificently cool! My heart goes out to you! You are so right about this year. Ready for this one to end much earlier than usual. You have a knack with words that kind of put it all in perspective. The new fur babies are definitely a bright spot. Mona

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mona,

      He was indeed, and thank you for that. And for the lovely props as well.

      This is just one of those years I don’t think anyone is ever going to forget, even if we really want to.

      The fur babies are acclimating to their new surroundings nicely. The girl (calico) has been shy thus far, but it’s only a matter of time before she’s ruling the roost.


  9. It sucks to be losing the furry friends in this time of need (we are in that boat). Youโ€™re so smart to be keeping up with a physical fitness routine and avoiding the junk. I fall short of my goals in that arena. Donโ€™t ever be comparing yourself unfavorably with any well-known wordsmith out there, โ€˜cause youโ€™ve GOT it.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I so loved this, and to think I almost missed it. And all the quotes…Kurt, Horatio, and Mr. Melville gets an honorary mention in true tribute to Mr. Speaker.

    I’m sure, though still sad, writing about it made it a pawful better.

    Dovetail…in the A file.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Youโ€™re getting stronger by the day, doing what is RIGHT for you! Itโ€™s tough getting to that point, but if you donโ€™t make yourself a priority, then who will? Iโ€™m sorry for your loss. That sucks, without a doubt. It sounds as though you are taking steps of renewal and rejuvenation. My neighborโ€™s cat visits me twice a day for attention and nibbles. I cherish that time to โ€œconfideโ€ in him my thoughts. lol Be strong. ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿฆ‹

    Liked by 1 person

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