Monday, October 31, 2005
  Don't worry if you got some jelly on there.
Bad News Hughes. He so funny.
if you guys want to see what it looks like here, besides what i was able to capture from my bike seat, check out the galleries on  very interesting stuff.
so i spent my weekend at the ho's.  we had a nice time, even despite our refugee status.  the lovely hoelschers have TWO guest bedrooms and a hot shower they don't get mad at you for lingering in.  plus, andrea is an awesome - and thoughtful - cook.  i got my yummy veggie cheeseburgers while everyone was eating their steaming plates of meat.  :)
alex was stuck since his work and his home are still out of power.  ralph and alli both had power and all that but, hey, hurricane party - who can resist that?  also, one of andrea's and alli's co-workers, paul, who actually lives quite close to me was there.  he is the one who offered up the ride home (after matt laughed at me at length about the fact that i had power at home but no way to get there) even though his place, according to, did not have power yet.  instant karma for him - by the time he got to his place, it was aglow.  :)
this past week has been such a weird one that i can't really figure out what i've said and what i haven't already and i need to go home to wash some clothes!  yawn.. tonight is definitely a lazy one.  i just wish i had some groceries.  grr.
  One of my favorite pictures from post-Wilma Florida

Post Wilma, originally uploaded by estacey.

Got this the other day. I was so glad the girl didn't notice me stopping on my bike to snap her picture.

  je suis back at work!
both HOME and WORK have power.  phew!
i consider myself lucky; most people have power but many still don't. 
halloween has been cancelled.  that's like saying we're cancelling christmas.  it's really sad.  and i was going to be a cat lady this year!  (ha ha, and they say you have to dress up.)
i'll upload some pictures later today.  i've got lots of work to catch up on right now, however.
as for the rest of you - how the heck are you all?  i have hardly heard from anyone lately.. c'mon, gimme some love!
Friday, October 28, 2005
  i'm alive!
and no, i don't have electricity!  still!
i'm over on the west coast.  i had been going crazy - we've had some really great weather during the day, but it's been freezing at night and we've been under a 7-p.m. curfew.. oh, and my tire went flat so i'm basically stranded at my house.  by thursday night, i was tired of reading by candlelight and talking to the cats so ed came and rescued me.  we came here to his parents' yesterday and i enjoyed my first hot shower since sunday!  :D
all is well.. life is definitely different right now.  no work, no hot food, no damn dunkin donuts coffee.. i basically two days without eating because cold soup had just completely lost its appeal.  but it's been gorgeous outside!  like a mini vacation, only.. camping.. in your house.  :D 
we'll see if my work has power by monday.  if so, i have some pictures to upload then.  i slept through the worst part of the hurricane, after staying up ALL NIGHT on sunday, but i did still manage to get some shots at around 6-7 a.m. and then at 11 a.m.  lots of trees down.. worse in ed's neighborhood.. everything there is ruined.  i hope turty made it ok!
take care y'all.. i'll hopefully be around next week.  (although they say it could take until nov. 22 to get everyone's power restored.. ha ha ha.  ah well, at least i'll have a cheap FPL bill this month!)
Sunday, October 23, 2005
  I caught a crab!

Me? A goofball? What?, originally uploaded by estacey.

[Don't bother; those jokes have already been made.]

I'm always intrigued by the little crabs at the marina hanging out on all the ladders, but I never bothered trying to catch one, thinking I'd be unsuccessful. As I proved yesterday, not so! I caught two. One was a little pincher, but only for a few seconds, then he chilled, as you can see in the picture. Very neat little creatures.

I also saw an Atlantic spadefish right there in the marina.. The kind that kissed me once diving! Very cool. I tried to give it crackers but it was not at all interested.

I was so happy I went sailing yesterday.. We weren't even going to bother trying, with Wilma looming, but then the landfall date changed to Monday so we figured we'd give it a shot. And hey, good call; we had a lovely day on the water.. even had the drama of getting GROUNDED and having a nice Frenchman on a pleasure cruise with his dog tow us out to deeper water. Then we went to Shuckers and stayed long past our welcome but had a very good time.

I realized something yesterday - that it's an absolute tragedy that I didn't grow up in Florida. I am absolutely happiest at the seashore.. Not like here so much, but down in the Keys, where you look over as you're laying out and see a ghost crab has emerged from a hole right by your towel. Or where you can find conchs in the shallows. I get somewhat the same experience there at the marina, where I can find crabs and snails, spot fish and manatees in the water, spoil some marina-dwelling cats, then share my food with the ducks and vultures. To use one of my most favorite expressions, I would've been happy as a clam to grow up here. You know, to have been here at an age where it would have been socially acceptable/normal of me to catch some scurrying little crabs. Ahh, to dream..

Anyway, now it's time to go hunker down at home. It's okay; I have my hurricane supplies this time: Pria bars, water, batteries, and crossword puzzles. I plan big.

It turns out that the "abandoned" apartment where Mamacat's mama (and her babies) live is not actually abandoned at all; Alli and I went there Friday to feed the cats and there was a light on! Scary stuff; the place is like a packrat's hovel. So I don't think I'll be drilling up a tarp there as originally planned. The storm is going to be a one, from what I hear, so I hope the cats can just find a place to hide away.. There isn't much I can do but hope. :(

Anyone who's reading this, you can go ahead and say a little prayer for me. Not for my safety; I'll be fine. But for me to keep my power as long as possible. You never know how much you cherish your power until it's off!

  Very friendly tomcat

Beautiful ginger cat, originally uploaded by estacey.

He was very curious about the camera so I got some cute pictures :)

  Aww, poor kitty

Tongue cat, originally uploaded by estacey.

Saw this guy again yesterday at the marina.. His little tongue is ALWAYS hanging out.

Sought out another cat lady who takes care of the cats at the marina.. I have radar for other cat women, you know.. anyway, it turns out there are, like, 35 strays at that place!

Friday, October 21, 2005
  good news for the strays

jpg0G769LgTNw, originally uploaded by MalakianOne.

it's supposed to hit florida as a 1 or a 2 now.. rather than a 2 or a 3.. sounding better.. !

  'cane update
doesn't look like we'll get it until monday.
what, a hurricane hitting not on a weekend?  i'll be damned.
i'll make sure i have the phone AND the camera charged this time.  not sure if we're going to get it in any force, but if we do, i will at least be able to capture some of it. 
the sad thing is that i figured out night mode on alli's birthday - while walking home & drunk - and have yet to re-figure it out.  !!!  but i'll try again.  then again, it may actually hit in the daytime this time...
my shutters are now ALL up.  this sucks.  the house will be so dark & tomblike.  i've taken to sleeping on the couch the last couple of nights because i got creeped out the first time i shut the bedroom light off.  it was honestly BLACk.  maybe i need a nightlight.. :D
okee, me voy!  i had a headache earlier and it went away so i'm a happy girl!  'ritas tonight!  (or modelos, more likely.)  :)
  ahh, i'm such a nerd
too bad i don't like wisconsin.  why?
because i often dream of having a place in the country.  in wisconsin, we have places "in the country."  more, they're affordable.
now, why do i want to live in the country?
first, no landlord getting mad about the cats.
second, i could take the whole darn fluffy-tailed clan with me.  i don't want a dozen cats, but i do want the entire fluffy-tail clan and if that involves having a dozen cats, so be it.  not in a one-bedroom apartment, however.  darnit.
also, i would love to have a cow.
yes, a cow.
i hear they're really friendly.  if they're socialized to people as calves, they will run up to you - like a dog - to great you.  every once in a while, i do a petfinder search for cow to daydream.
look, i could adopt this 2,400-lb bruiser!
or, or..!
how cute!!
maybe i'm destined to live in central florida.  it's a thought.  :)
  Lucky cat

I had to go to the Pet Supermarket yesterday to get some cat grass - I caught Mama eating a houseplant the other day. A very inedibile houseplant. So I got her some grass.. And when I was at the store, I noticed this cat up in one of the display kitty condos. "That cat's real?" "Yep." "He lives here?" "Yep, we adopted him." HOW CUTE IS THAT? I am so impressed with Pet Supermarket - a CHAIN - for their adoption program.. AND even allowing individual stores to adopt their own pets. It's a great idea; how much happier would a cat be than in a pet store? With birds to watch! And kitty condos to sleep in! Great! :)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

originally uploaded by estacey.

ok, so i'm the biggest nerd.

my chest pretty much ACHED by the time i got to class.. it had been such a long, hectic day.. add dread on top of that! (i HATE public speaking. Hatehatehatehate.)

i was soothed by the fact that lots of people did fairly.. well, poor jobs on their speeches. the first girl to go - and she volunteered to do so! literally kept spacing out for 10-second periods. and she had all these awkward, forced gestures.. like car salesmen on tv, you know. it was painful, like watching a model get interviewed when she doesn't get the jokes and uses words wrong.

anyway, so i get up to go. i'm trying to inflect, trying to make eye contact.. and then i get to this notecard. and i seriously just looked at it and choked up. CHOKED UP. i tried to read "stacey's father passed away in 1998" three times and couldn't get past my name.. my eyes teared up. bottom lip started to tremble. all of this in front of the whole freaking class. i apologized, took a deep breath, finally got it out, and got on with my speech. when i sat down back at my desk, i nearly started crying.

i seriously wasn't expecting to be like that in front of everyone. i mean, i can normally talk about my dad without bursting into tears. i guess i was just already very shaky.. add an emotionally-charged statement to that.. recipe for disaster!

but, it's done with.. and i got an 88%. next topic is a persuasive one of our choosing.. i'm guessing "Choosing Free-Range Meat" will not be emotionally as difficult to talk about. anger over sadness, it's always the best choice. phew. :)

p.s. dawny, see? you're "beloved." :)

amanda, don't read this.*

ha ha ha, i'm so smart.

i'd like to get another tattoo, see. but they cost money. problem.

but i am thinking i need to start using the internet and all its perverts to my advantage.
people are into feet. people are into morbidly obese women. people are into furries. people are into paris hilton, for crissake.

there has to be someone out there into girls getting tattoos. all i gotta do is say, "you pay for it, i'll take pictures of me getting it." end of deal. actually, there are probably plenty of free pics out there of that.. so hopefully the person paying would have a secondary fetish.. say, girls wearing spiderman masks or something. that way, i could get a tattoo while wearing a spiderman mask and it would be free!

i admit, i had this idea originally when i realized $25 pedicures were too expensive for me to indulge in, as much as i may love them. all i had to do was take pictures of my feet afterwards and SOME weirdo out there would pay for the pedicure! right?

this is maybe a business idea! set needy girls up with the fetishists of their requirements. whatcha think? :D

*this note was added because apparently my niece read this site the other day and got all mad at me and said she was never reading my blog again. why? that posting i had from craigslist, remember? she thought I was writing that and reported to my sister that, "Stacey likes porn and doesn't even care who knows about it." IT WAS THE GUY FROM CRAIGSLIST SAYING ALL THAT, NOT ME! c'mon amanda! (i would add a really funny but improper joke here, but knowing my luck amanda would check this and then have to report to my family that i.. well, you know where i'm going with this. :)

  Lucycat staring at the hole in the floor

Ed says: "lucy has been very concerned about the kitchen project since it began but the hole in the floor is just over the top. she is totally intrigued. it is too funny...she just sits and looks at it."

Ahh, cats are so funny! And look at how fat my Lucy got!

Cats are just so curious about new things & change.. When I was making my toga the other night, I kept dropping it on the floor. Every time I'd come back in the room, the cats were taking turns sitting on it. First Mama, then Mini.. I'm like, guys! It's fabric!

They're probably VERY confused about the tomb-like shuttered apartment..

Wednesday, October 19, 2005
i was just home and the landlord was putting up the hurricane shutters.  he, of course, had to come knocking on my door once he saw i was home to give me a hard time about the cats outside.  as if i can do anything.  i tried to catch them twice last week and it was just a big huge frustration.  so he said today he'd have to call the humane society and they'd come get them.  i told him no, i think you have to catch them yourself (a fact which i confirmed with them) and told him i'd drive them to the beach sanctuary once he did, but that i couldn't catch them myself.  and then he said he was going to have to start charging me the extra $25 a month for the animal fee, which he was overlooking before.. but now i have more than one cat.  this is supposedly in case my air conditioner needs to be replaced due to pet hair.  uhhh.  okay.
i absolutely hate that he is always there nowadays and i have to avoid him all the time or deal with crap like that.
it's not my fault homeless cats live outside.
i gotta do a speech tonight.  a biography.
the teacher, being the airhead she is, forgot to pair me up with someone.. so i have to do a biography on MYSELF.  (in third person, ha ha.)
an easier task than having to do one on someone else?  sure.
but unfortunately that involves discussing my life and my family.
on a normal day, that'd be ok, but i am suffering from the most horrible day of the month right now, if you know what i mean.
even the thought of the hurricane is making me tear up; how ever am i going to deal with talking about my dad in front of 25 people? 
nice timing, aunt flo!
  anonymous commenter..
.. said "I'm so impressed by your concern for these poor kitties. I have been trying to domosticate a feral kitten since July and she is finally letting me pet her and she now takes tentative steps through my back door. She seems to have an injured rear foot and has been hobbling around on 3 legs since I found her. My hope is to finally entrap her in the cat carrier so I can take her to the vet for shots and spaying. You just inspire me that you are so caring :-)"
thank you :)  that's so sweet of you to say and so sweet of you to DO. 
i put this up because it actually coincides with something i wanted to post about mamacat.
i've had mamacat inside now for four months.  FOUR MONTHS!  and she still acts like anytime i'm crossing the room, it's because i want to eat her (i guess she has yet to notice that i don't eat meat).  she always slinks away and hides under the bed.  it's so frustrating.. because, well, sometimes i'm just going for a glass of water, but sometimes i do want to pet her.  i keep thinking, "i've done nothing but pet you and talk nice to you and take care of your little babies for the past four months and you still see me as a threat?" 
just in the past WEEK, however, she's really come around.  i realized she wasn't running away any time i approached her.  i was so tickled that i started going over to pet her ALL THE TIME just to go, "omg! not running away!"
on top of that, she's just started to really PLAY.  ever since she came out of the bedroom with the kittens, she's enjoyed wrestling with elliot.  however, in the past week, she's been acting like a KITTEN.  crawling up the curtains, crawling up the screens.. last night she did the make-a-toy-move-so-she-can-pounce-on-it thing.  and she wakes me up every morning after my alarm goes off by wanting to be pet and played with.  yep, she hops up in my bed.  it's so cute.
all this is just to say.. while the formerly feral elliot came around in WEEKS (plus the two months the shelter people put in before me), mamacat took four months to really start to trust me.  but with patience, it happens!
the timing of finding the kittens really sucks; we have a hurricane coming this weekend.  the grown-up cats will always be fine; those that don't come in my house can go under it.  but where will the kittens seek shelter?  i'm dreading this. :~(
  yay, drugs!
i just went to the allergist and got some new Rx drugs.. and have started on shots already! no re-testing needed!
on my way back to the car, i realized i was parked across the street from a "Obestetrician / Gynecologist" office that shared the building with the "Incontinence Center of South Florida".  ugh!  what a name!  i mean, the best these poor incontinent folks can hope is that the people outside will think they're instead having problems with their vaginas.  (ok, ok, i don't really consider a fetus a "problem with their vagina" but still). 
so i was thinking.. why don't they make the side of the building instead say something like "Obestetrician / Gynecologist / Incontinence Center of South Florida / South Florida Center for the Mind-Blowingly Good in Bed" ?  i think that'd definitely be nicer.
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
  i can't believe it's only tuesday...
at least after this unbearably long week, i have a weekend of hurricane side effects to look forward to!  ah well, at least this ensures i will get my butt into the pet supermarket on sunday to get mini her package of  kitten shots.  $32 for her shots!  how awesome is that?  if i can work out the logistics, i may take in fluffy as well.. he's only rabies vaccinated right now.
and for the record, as long as i am yet again talking about my cats, i am not a cat lady!  i'm an animal person!  there's a difference!  if i had friendly squirrels all over my neighborhood, i would be committed to helping them.  or panda bears.  or flamingos.  or toads.  no, really; i found two toads once completely infested with ticks once while i was jogging and i took them home (of course i got peed on), used my little tick-removing tool to get them all off, and then fretted so much about where i was going to let them go that i ended up driving them back to the place they came from.  i hope sarah doesn't read this or she'll probably have nightmares.  ("toads! covered in ticks! agggh!")  it's just that the cats are there and lovable, and the ones outside are charity cases.  how can you resist any of that?
at that toga party the other night, the older lady there, tara, came over to say goodbye to me before she left.  "you are beautiful," she said.  "people tell you that a lot, right?"  something along those lines.  that kind of stuff happens here and there at social gatherings.. and more often than not, it's an older woman doing the complimenting.  i have two thoughts on that: 1) Weird; and 2) Weird.  1) it is so strange to me that these people find me attractive enough to comment upon it; and 2) why are the older ladies so vocal?  do they remember feeling unsure when they were young(er) so take as many opportunities as possible to compliment other women?  i dunno..  in any case, it's very nice to get a compliment that does not involve my hair.  :)
i have an appointment with the allergist tomorrow to 1) get some better drugs and 2) see about starting allergy shots again.  yay!  now i can get some panda bears!  and squirrels! 
oh yeah, and dawn, i sent your book!
i had a thought today while home & watching animal precinct, a show i wisely tend to avoid as it is both infuriating and depressing.  i really need to find me a sugar daddy so i can be one of those animal cops.  i fear, however, that i may often feel tempted to night-stick these abusers in the face.  today they found three dogs in an apartment pretty much starving to death; they figured the dogs only would've lasted another week or so.  these dogs were skin & bones.  and then they find the owner.. and don't you know, she's some big nasty fat lady with six kids.  #1 she's fat. very fat. arms jiggling five minutes after she stopped moving; that kind of fat.  #2.  you know for damn sure that her kids were fat.  and no leftovers could have been spared for those poor dogs?  anyway, they got the one up to a normal weight but he had so long been neglected that he was basically paralyzed with fear.  give him food, he'd just look at it.  i don't know about you, but i'm used to pretty much having to play keep away whenever i'm eating something the cats find appealing.  it is absolutely unfathomable that someone could let a dog get to that point.. nearly dead and completely unused to humans.  i'd like to help, but i'm guessing the animal cops get paid something like $25k a year for their troubles.  so, lest me and the zoo go hungry, i need me a sugar daddy.  or, with the way things are going, maybe a sugar mama would be easier to get?  ;)
  Wildlife, South Florida

Ed's racoon, originally uploaded by estacey.

Ed, who previously had problems with possums sneaking in the house, is presently suffering from an outgoing racoon who discovered the cat door.

His words:

"It has been coming in the house every night and getting in to everything. Up in my bedroom got the tootpaste off the sink and chewed it up, gnawed on my wallet (leather). I'm lucky it didn't run away with my wallet. Knocked the old laptop off the coffee table and ate the caps lock, shift, a,s, and z keys!"

It went UP THE STAIRS into the bedroom! I would be very amused by the whole thing but I doubt he is.. :D Anyway, this is a pic of the offender.

  xmas ideas anyone?
being the mallphobic girl that i am, i'm ordering catalogs to browse around for xmas gifts for my family.. anyone have any suggestions on catalogs to get?  any clever or cool catalogs you've seen?  please let me know! 
  I am going to be such a funny old lady.
Signals - Bird's Nest Necklace

I can't wait until I'm old enough to wear necklaces like this! :D
Monday, October 17, 2005
  It's Fluffy's mom!!!

She has a funny mouth, originally uploaded by estacey.

I got pics of the whole clan today! Including the adorable KITTENS!
They are so, so, so scared. This is totally a feral colony in the making; they live in a more or less abandoned apartment complex, so they don't have much interaction with people.. There are a couple of people living there, including a guy who I convinced to bring out some water for them. Maybe I can get them used to people... I think the little ones could still come around and be people-friendly. Their life doesn't look so bad, but I think they'd be happier & healthier in a home.

  What happened to Mini's whiskers????

It's something she's doing to herself, I think. I noticed one was just bent last week and kept track and, sure enough, it was soon a stubby whisker like the rest.

WHAT could she be doing, though??

  toga! toga! toga!

PA152079, originally uploaded by tiswango.

i decided to go the glam route on the toga.. that is, after they said i couldn't wear my bathrobe. so i bought this pretty fabric for $1/yard at walmart and wore a special-occasion necklace. matt was making me pose for this picture. "more cleavage!" "i don't got no more!"

unfortunately, i missed sailing; i slept through it. i had such, such, such a long week, then went out for mexican with steph & sarah. had a nice time. :) i was home and asleep by 1 but somehow managed to sleep until, get this, 2:15 the next day. uff! so i missed sailing but still made it to the toga party, and only two hours late!

yesterday was a chill day. i painted shelves and hung a mirror and went window shopping and avoided my speech.

and now it's monday again! :(

  crocs. with a toga.

PA152046, originally uploaded by tiswango.

Friday, October 14, 2005
  the camera is charging
so i will actually (hopefully) take some pictures this weekend!
pics of what, you ask?
well.  mini fluffy looks as if someone has trimmed down her whiskers.  i've already interrogated possible suspects and it doesn't seem that anyone's to blame.  she looks just silly.. and i'm completely stumped.  (no pun intended?) 
sidenote:  she always tries to get out of the house when i open the door, probably taking after her uncle's behavior.  difference is, fluffy actually gets to go out.  so i took pity on her today and brought her out to the clothesline to gather my things.  i set her down in the grass and she just sat there and cried.  cry, cry, cry.. then she ran so she was between my legs.  i was touched that she came to me for protection from the evil SKY and BIRDS and GRASS.  she seemed to enjoy the ride back to the house in the clothesbasket, but that is probably only because she was happy to be getting fur and kitty germs all over my freshly washed clothes.
oh, and i have to get a pic of them sleeping on the windowsill.  mamacat, fluffy, and mini all sleep together sometimes at night.  mini and fluffy were sleeping with their heads touching the other night and it was so cute i about fainted.  they all have exactly the same face, except one is silver and the other is miniature. 
i did my closet last night!  that makes the third night in a row that i didn't get to bed until after two, but i at least now have a functioning closet
this is what i had to hang my clothes on before:
two of them.  yes, like, put the hangers between those little slats.  and the worst part is that the one shelf was out of reach so i had to stand on my tip-toea and the hanger, without fail, wouldn't come off until the third try, right around the time i was swearing.
i know this is a lot of talk about a closet, but it has been an issue of mine for months now and it is finally resolved.  gracias a dios! 
the whole time i was working on it, i realized that both of my neighbors, each of which having the same floorplan as i, have live-in girlfriends.  i cannot even imagine the fights they get in over closet space. 

it was definitely a project.. i realized quickly that it would've been a lot easier to do when i had someone around to support the OTHER half of the 90-inch rod while i tried to drill in the other side.  but, being as resourceful as i am, i used a shoelace and a bra strap to support the two sides so i didn't have to try to hold them while i drilled. 
this weekend, i get to paint bathroom shelves! 
i'm also going sailing and to a toga party, assuming i don't manny out on either.  i really just want to stay home and admire my well-organized closet, though.  :D

read the whole thing to see why i'm saying wow. the beginning is normal. looking for drug-free roommate. et cetera.

update. craigslist apparently took this thing down. so, as requested..

Now I said I’m going to be totally upfront. Here’s more info that you need to know - I like to watch porn, and I’m not ashamed to be a sexually-active 27 yo male. I like to walk around in my boxers, and I have hook-ups over. I am also 100% gay friendly. So I don’t care if you’re straight, gay, bi, whatever. I am the president of a local fraternity, and we do consensual gang bangs on girls about once a month (in hotel rooms). Wanted to be upfront about that as well. It’s a big part of who I am. It’s a really great fraternity. We’re all about male bonding, and guys just being guys and having a great time and using women - hell yeah! If you’re cool and inshape, maybe you can even join in on the fun!
Thursday, October 13, 2005
i have some weird thing where i get really annoyed when things that cost a lot cost a lot because, you know, who wants to pay a lot for that?
case in point: i need a drill.  i had one from byron but he didn't bring over the CHARGER.  so i have a dead drill with no way to charge it.
i need my shelves up, so i think, "okay, i guess i'll just buy one."  even with my bargain-shopper abilities, i can't really find one for under $30.  most of them are in the $50-70 range.  some i saw cost $150.  $150!  on a drill! 
i'm thinking there should be some store something like SNL's sentimental pawn shop:
Pawn Shop Owner: Okay! [ she exits; Man enters ] Hi, what can I do for you?
Man: I'd like to pawn this item, it's a plastic piano.
Pawn Shop Owner: Who gave it to you?
Man: My parents. You see, when I was a boy, I loved the piano.. and I always wanted to be a concert pianist, and this was just a symbol of, you know, how much they believed in me.
Pawn Shop Owner: Ohh.. so this is just a sad reminder of an unfulfilled dream, huh?
Man: Oh, no. I made it. I am a concert pianist. I play with the city symphony.
Pawn Shop Owner: Ohhh.. oh! So, this would be nice for you to keep forever?
Man: Oh, yeah!
Pawn Shop Owner: Your parents alive or dead?
Man: [ solemn ] My father passed away last summer.
Pawn Shop Owner: Mother?
Man: She's still alive. [ a beat ] She's not well.
Pawn Shop Owner: Look, I'll be honest with you. This'll be worth a lot more when she goes, believe me.
Man: [ silent ] Gee.. I really needed the money now, but, uh.. I guess you've got a point.
Pawn Shop Owner: Well, see, you would have to take less now, is the only thing.
Man: Yeah. Yeah. Okay, well thanks, I'll come back.
Pawn Shop Owner: Okay, I'll be here!
Man: Thank you. [ exits ]
that'd be good, right?  i could go on to explain that i have, like, two tools in my possession: a wussy hammer and a FLORAL-DESIGNED screwdriver (i had to).  i don't like tools or make ape noises when i look at them or use them.  i don't care how well it works or what brand it is or what it looks like; i just need something that successfully makes holes.  i'm sure that'd bring the price down.
ooh!  $10 one on craigslist.. let's hope it's not gone!  :D
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
i met fluffy and mama's mom tonight!  i was really, really just.. well, happy to have seen her.  after all, she's my favorite cat's mama!
her name is jennifer.  (gotta love those cat-lady names.)  she looks just like mamacat only with a little bit more wildcat-jimmy look to her.  she's very sweet and apparently rules the neighborhood a block or so down fillmore with her three juvenile offspring.  yes, there are, like, at least three more of fluffy's siblings in the neighborhood.  and we saw a very young black cat with a big bushy tail tonight, too.  could it be yet another?
oh, and guess what.
jennifer's pregnant.
i'll be playing this by ear. 
i'm having flashbacks of poopy pawprints on my couch, however, and am hoping very much that jennifer is just fat.  in which case she needs to be brought in to be spayed.  i love fluffy but fillmore street does not need 20 of him!
fair warning: y'all just may be getting fluffy-tailed cats for christmas.
  ahh, a trip to home depot later and i feel so much better
and not just because i'm having an i-feel-ugly day (less than 5 hours of sleep will do that to you), yet all the men/pigs in home depot were whistling at me! why yes, sir, i am a model with my bad skin and under-eye circles!

nope, that's not why!

i bought a step stool! (can i tell you how many times i've almost fallen off the "for decoration purposes" one-foot tall stool i have? and this one was only $9.99!) and a tape measure! (can i tell you how i have had to measure huge distances with the help of only a 12-inch ruler?) and a new plant for the bathroom! (why bother watering when a new one only costs $1.99?) and a big huge closet rod!

ahh, i feel so much better now.

i may go back later and spring for a hose! and an $10 bathroom shelf! yep, i'm feeling craaaazy!

ahh, what a sad life... :D
  bitch & moan
my current frustrations deal mainly with my home. and my car.  ha ha.
my bedroom closet is basically the only closet i have.  it's horrible.  the hangers go on these little um.. how to say.. well, slatted type thing.  which means you can't move a hanger once you put it in.  meaning, you can't do the normal sliding-the-hangers-to-look-for-something thing.  plus, it's very very dark.  so i can't move anything and i can't see anything.  my closet has totally just become unused at this point.. i keep everything in laundry baskets and separators.. it's horribly frustrating.  all i have for proper clothes storage besides those horrible hanger things is a plastic chest of drawers purchased at target for like $20.  and i can't get to it in the closet and it's too dark to see inside it anyway.
so this weekend i decided i needed to do something about it and went to kmart to find some type of organizer or something. 
sad realization?  i can't afford anything.  even at kmart.  I CANNOT SHOP AT KMART WITHOUT SOUL-SEARCHING!  ("do i really, really need this $8 storage container?")
yes, i am too poor to shop at kmart.  kmart is rungs below target, for sure, and even walmart, i think.
so anyway, i settled for a corner shelf for my bathroom for $7.
somehow it fell down the other day and a big nick was taken out of the paint.
beyond this, i've been trying to hang my things on my walls that i have.  i've been living at this apartment for six months and it still looks unlived in, mostly.  my walls are SUPER hard though.. so you can't use tacks.  and pounding nails in is serious business.  i tried tacking up my onion poster last night and the tacks wouldn't go in so i used NAILS (yes, i was that frustrated), but then the whole thing was uneven and bubbled up.
and i TRIED to put these cute thrift-store finds up the other night.. they are like decorative trivets.. had my camera been charged up, i so would've taken a picture.  it was so pathetic.  they were all uneven and some spaced an inch apart, others a half-inch.  it honestly made me crack up.  freaking living alone, without someone handy around.. agggh.. horrible!  all the hangable stuff just sits in piles around my place.
oh yeah, also, i got closet rods to improve matters.
the smallest of the rods they have does not fit, but only by about half an inch.  do you have ANY IDEA of how frustrating that is?  those rods were my salvation!  now i have to try to rig something up the LONG way in the closet rather than widthwise. 
and i don't have a chair to stand on.  and stepping stools cost too much.
bah. i get paid this week and am saying screw it all.  i've long said i can't afford to spruce up my place, except when i luck out thrifting, but it's now it started to affect my sanity, so i'm going to just go for it.  i'm buying the longer closet rod, some shelves for the bathroom ($10/piece) and some paint to make them match.  AND ANYTHING ELSE THAT WILL HELP ME MAKE MY PLACE MINE AND LIVEABLE
sorry to complain again, but luckily i think my funk is beginning to wear off.  i've had no energy lately, no desire to do anything.. as you've noticed from the lack of pics; i am no even excited by pictures anymore.  but last night i was up til 3 working on stuff.  so i think i'm emerging from the month-long funk.  it's just.. the apt. situation.. being poor.. i still have not dealt with the outdoor cats so have to avoid my landlord.  i just can't deal with the thought of separating them.  the brothers love each other and elvis loves them; they rub against each other as they walk ALL THE TIME.  and unless i can catch the three at once, they are going to be fixed/moved at different times.  so the thought comes back - why the hell do they have to go?  i love them, the cat lady loves them.. why not just let them live in peace?  :(
  Scaredy Cat!

Scaredy Cat at his new house, originally uploaded by estacey.

The girl who adopted Thor and Scaredy Cat sends me pictures all the time. She absolutely adores them and that makes me so happy. :)

And look, she takes them outside for fresh air! I gotta do this for Mini. Mini tries to walk out the door with me every single morning.

  happy hump day!

DSC_1036, originally uploaded by slowernet.

and tomorrow is yom kippur, so i don't have class tonight. yay! :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2005
  our visit to miami-dade animal services
WARNING: i am totally on a rant here. but what else do you expect after i, stacey, visit an animal shelter?

this is where i got leia, too. leya? i dunno how i spelled it for the one week that i was a dog owner. kinda. (it was byron's parents' dog, but i picked her out and i got to dog-sit for like five days.)

anyway, alli had to dispose of poor little esmerelda somehow, so she talked to the animal control people and they said she could bring esme in. as long as she was there, alli figured, she'd take a look at the cats up for adoption. after all, dino needed a friend. that's why esme went to her in the first place.

i stayed over at alli's the night before, on friday night. we ate pizza and watched french kiss. yeeeah, we know how to live it up on south beach. :D we talked a little about esmerelda and how sad the whole thing was. the one thought that consoles me is that 90% of esme's life was spent being a very beloved kitten, nursing on mama and playing with her brothers and sister. the thought that will still tear me up, however, is the fact that she just left the bedroom a month ago. picturing the little kittens when they first started venturing out of the bedroom.. first started exploring their little four-room world (and the porch!).. well, it's a very sobering fact about how she had just started life. i'm very sad that she couldn't have died at my house, with mama there. esme had tried to nurse off of alli's cat dino (young cats do that sometimes), so i can't help but think that nursing would've comforted her.


the shelter

so we were sent to the line where people were there to surrender their animals. yes, that's my favorite place to be on a saturday afternoon.

some folks were bring in some kittens they found behind their house. i, of course, had to go check them out in the box they were being kept in and was immediately relieved that mama had her kittens in my house. these poor things.. they were just tiny. super thin. crusty eyes. one was laying on the bottom of the box and panting. i went to ask for water for them and some nice guy followed me back out and just took the box inside, to put them where it was someplace cooler. oh, it's so nice to be understood! i'm always the girl at wal*mart, trying to get some dumb associate to take the one fish out 'cause the other ones are picking on it and just love it when people look at me like i'm crazy.

the doomed cocker

the guy immediately in front of us was bring in his cocker spaniel. i heard him speaking in spanish with a girl in the line about why he was there. he said he didn't have time to give it the exercise it needed.

when he reached the front of the line, the animal control worker asked him, "is this dog aggressive?" he immediately answered affirmatively. all i could think was, lady, way to go giving him a damn excuse. "just so you know then, sir, he will be put down. we won't adopt out animals that are even the least bit aggressive. i wanted to be honest with you." he then went on to detail about how he tries to attack everyone, he took the dog to the groomer and he went after all four of the people there. i had pet the dog already by this point, mind you. while the lady tried to stress to the guy that the dog would be put down (so you may as well just pay the euthanasia request fee, sir, rather than the surrender fee, is what she was saying), i pet the dog again. he made a face at me that made me snatch my hand back. so, okay, the guy may have a point. but still - the dog had never bitten anyone, he was nice to his owner.. is that really grounds for a death sentence? and why did the guy change his story? i stood there muttering "asshole" under my breath the whole time he was being interviewed by the animal control worker. then as they led the dog away, i got choked up. when it was our turn to talk to the lady, i just blurted out, "how can you do this job?" i see what she was doing; she was trying to make the guy take the dog back. most people, (people with hearts, mind you), that had taken care of a dog for a year+.. if they were told the dog would have to be killed.. well, that may make people think twice about surrendering it, right? blah.

this was a cocker spaniel. i've heard that breed can be aggressive. another reason why people should go to the pound and adopt a mutt that they like rather than just buy a random dog because it fits the breed/look you want. (need i remind you that they have purebreds at the shelter ALL THE TIME?) my sister who bought the mini dachsund didn't listen to my bit of advice on that and three years later has a dog that snaps at her son. but she wanted a cute little wiener dog. and now she wants to get rid of it. she was going to put it on the free ads in the paper. if i had been there in person when i heard this, i would've smacked her. yes, the dog is a jerk. but the dog loves her and she loves the dog. she at least owes it more than giving it to god knows who.. how would she feel if dummy poco went to an abusive home? or to people who gave up on poco after a month and then what.. ?
don't get me started on my other sister who bred her lab for a little before fixing her.

people suck

so then the lady behind us had just a gorgeous dog. big, beautiful, mostly-white mutt. she overheard alli tell me it was a no-kill shelter and exclaimed, "oh, thank god, i feel so much better." i was instantly disgusted and all i could think was, "this lady is not going to feel OKAY TO ANY DEGREE about abandoning this dog." i understand people have circumstances, ya dig? but this poor dog, it deserved better. it stood in line wagging its tail, with no clue that its future for who knows how long was a lonely cage in a stinky shelter. i think if you have an animal that depends on you, that loves you, that trusts you.. if your circumstances require you to not have it any longer, you owe it at least finding it a decent home. find a relative. talk to your friends. don't just abandon it. and all this outrage came out in a disguised wondering out loud. "well, that just means that they keep them here until they're adopted. and what if they're not?" i said to the lady. "is that really even better than being put to sleep? having to live in a lonely shelter for the rest of your life?" she shut up, knowing she had not found a friend that would understand in me. whether what i said was true or not - i'm no even going to ponder the thought - i hope it made her think a little. dogs are just.. so loving, so trusting.. dogs get sad when you leave to go to work. can you imagine the depression at an animal shelter?

excuses, excuses

i may be being too judgmental. maybe the lady had a valid reason for getting rid of the dog. maybe it tries to, i dunno, eat her every time she goes to sleep. okay, i would understand that. but i am a regular reader of craigslist and see entirely too many giveaway pet ads saying, "I'm moving," or "My new apartment doesn't allow pets." gee, you think you should've taken your DOG into account before CHOOSING that apartment then? and what, they don't allow dogs in phoenix? i'm just over people and the way they throw away their pets. if you want to be able to shed your animals when you tire of them, get a fish.

fish sidenote

i went to clean my betta's bowl the other day. i put him in a tupperware container with water, as usual. so his new water can get to room temperature, you know. i went to check on him later in the day and he was gone. gone! so i am guessing elliot got him. ate him. sorry, little phinneus!

instant karma

alli, bless her, went into the shelter with the idea that she would adopt the least adoptable cat there. "three legs? one eye? bring 'em on." she was excited to see the polydactyl cat, but i told her that's actually a bonus for some people. it was a beautiful cat anyway. a beautiful white and ginger cat that looked like it was wearing mittens. :)

i spent my time playing with some tiny black kittens and a hyperactive tortie kitten that i wish i could've taken for byron while alli checked out the cats. she inquired about a nice black medium-haired cat that was honestly just the sweetest thing ever. a grown-up cat that meeped for attention! and she would sit there while you held her, purring.

onto the second cat room, where alli saw a big bruiser girl of a cat. a surrendered cat. "she's been here since august!" alli said. wow. all the other cats' intake dates were in october. this poor girl cat had been sitting in her shelter cage for a month+! alli asked to hold her. the cat obliged. and then the cat shed all the hell over her. we noticed the random lightning streak on her back of white fur. both were dino traits, so alli knew it was her cat. during my cat search (for which elliot was my reward), someone said to me that picking out a pet was something like falling in love; sometimes there's just something about an animal that makes you know it's yours. and it's so cute how that actually does happen. i knew elliot would be a good cat under all that cowering exterior. alli knows she will love jass. yes, her name was jass, but don't worry - alli is renaming her to a bond girl name.

she's picking her up tonight. i'm so happy she did such a nice thing. good karma for alli!

i had an idea while i was there, after seeing all those cats and peeking my head into the dog rooms. i wouldn't even go in there, though; cats are a little depressing at a shelter, but dogs are heartbreaking. there are something like 300 animals at that facility every day... yet, every day, people are paying hundreds of dollars for dogs from breeders and pet stores. and then they wind up with dogs like my sister's dachsund.. because they were looking for breed/status over personality. so i think, fine, if you want to buy a dog, go ahead. but first, you have to take a tour of your local shelter. find a dog you like there. play with it. and if you're still okay with buying a dog over saving one, go ahead. i think that'll get you a bit of karma as well. unfortunately, there is no one to implement this idea. the best idea i can come up with is pelting people at pet stores with cream pies, PETA-style, if they haven't done their shelter tour. pelting, ha ha, no pun intended.
Monday, October 10, 2005
  Moi, a la Botticelli

Botticelli me, originally uploaded by estacey.

  uninteresting thought of the day
when i was 19 or 20, i had a bottle of aussie hairspray basically empty itself in my trunk.  my car, and everything that was in it at the time, reeked of that grape-whatever smell.  for months, that smell permeated the books i was reading, clothes i had in the car (this was during a moving time), etc.  that smell started to make me feel ill.
now, 7+ years later, i am sitting here with a headache and a generally ill feeling from the smell of the aussie conditioner i bought over the weekend.  i thought 7 years would be enough to let me let go of some horrible association-related condition, but apparently not.
so anyway, how weird is that?  that smell never gave me a headache BEFORE.  funny what association will do to you.
Friday, October 07, 2005
  M.I.A. - video!
Broadcast - Galang 05

Okay, I just love her. And I totally dig the music.

I also have the feeling that when I am thrifting from now on, I am always going to feel compelled to get the "Fabulous & 50" shirts for her. :)
  a few things that were said out loud last evening..
and which immediately made me very sad, making me feel that i have taken a wrong turn somewhere in life.

1. "whose ass exploded?" [said upon opening the lid to the litter box]

2. "alright, elliot, pepperoni gives you gas?" [the neighbors gave me pizza. i gave the pepperoni parts to the cats.]

3. "aww, did elliot lose his cockroach?" [the sad part is that i truly felt bad for him. lost his cockroach.. awww. i spot one every few weeks. -for you non-floridians, it's NOT that big a deal here. we live with ants and with the occasional lizard and roach in exchange for 80-degree winters- the cats always catch them, luckily. last night elliot found one and pranced around with his prize in his mouth. next thing i know, he's searching frantically. awww.]

later, i watched a show about cancer on pbs. apparently i'm a glutton for sadness, but only when there's no law & order on. all i could think after curling up into a ball in my bathrobe and crying was - wow. people don't always suck, i guess. the support these folks gave to their dying children and husbands was.. amazing.. touching.. it made me hope very much that i have my own loved ones someday. it's a nice thought, isn't it?
  Little Esme died :(

Esme in her new home, originally uploaded by estacey.

Alli called me this morning to tell me that Esmerelda, aka OS, had passed away during the night.

She was a little sniffly even when I sent her home with Alli, I remember. Alli said she cried non-stop from day one at her house; I assumed it was because she was crying for Mama, but I think I was wrong.

She had runny poop for the first week or so at Alli's. Alli told me last week that that problem finally got better. But then earlier this week, Alli fed Esme and her other cat Dino when she got home from work and Esme was not interested at all.

So, then Alli got to become nurse. She force-fed her a little in the style I fed Mama. She'd give me updates: she's still lifeless, but she's alive! Kidding around, of course.

She had a vet appointment scheduled for Tuesday. We figured that by then, the kitten would be better anyway.

Not so.

I had been told not to count on all the kittens living when Mama had them. But I figured that since they made it to eight weeks, they were out of the woods. But I guess little Esme was just too sickly.

I'm so sad my little baby cat didn't have a chance to live a nice, happy cat life. :~(

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Angry Cat: feed me or..., originally uploaded by Steffe.

  Oh god

Missing, originally uploaded by Steffe.

Svanspervot has gone missing. He's one of my very favorite Flickr cats. Look at him! He's a beast!

Who knew a cat in Sweden going missing would make me so sad?

Petfinder PetNotes

My babies is famous!
  Speaking of hoarders | 10/02/2005 | Beyond 'cat lady': Pet hoarding not that uncommon:

I am relieved to see that most animal hoarders depended on pets to be their stability when they were growing up. "In many instances, he said, the obsessions with pets disappeared in early adulthood. But ultimately they turn back to animals later in life, and when that return occurs, it's really in a dysfunctional kind of way. And we see the hoarding begin.''

For the record, I had barely touched a cat until I started dating a guy who had two at age 26. :)

And anyway, I'm down to, um.. well, let's not talk about that.

  Look! He's cute too!

This is just the day of my crushes, y'all.


DSC_0136, originally uploaded by Semila76.

She's so cute.

I've downloaded a few of her songs. I don't know if I'd call it "hip hop", but I certainly like it.

  Fwd: FW: writer's almanac--poem of the day
A friend sent me a poem today that I thought was cute.  :)

Poem: "Wild Card" by Cathryn Essinger, from My Dog Does Not Read
Plato. © Main Street Rag Publishing Company. Reprinted with

Wild Card

The local newspaper reports
a Houston housewife has found
a three foot long snake indigenous
to California in her electric toaster.

I need to talk to this woman. I want
to know what kind of bread attracts
snakes, if she goes to church on Sundays
and if she believes in chance.

While I have her on the phone, I want
to ask about other irregularities, such as
the Osage orange that showed up
on my front step, a fruit so large

no creature could have carried it.
And what does she make of the wild card
I found in a pile of leaves-a Jack of Spades
masquerading as some variety of oak?

Or the crow who paces the patio,
carrying a packet of taco sauce,
dipping his beak casually, as if
hot sauce were his natural food.

I'd ask about the mouse I found
this morning in the dog's bowl,
frantic, half drowned, the small cap
of his skull bobbing like a tiny buoy.

Still, he swam, betting against all odds
that some housewife might appear
on this Sunday morning, looking for eggs
or waffle mix, and the opportunity to tip

the bowl onto a sunny porch where
a small thing, who has never questioned
the implacable nature of the universe,
could have another chance.
  How do send yourself into a depression in 10 minutes or less
Animal Concerns Community
They update the news every day. I used to read it every day. But nowadays.. well, I haven't checked it in weeks, specifically because it depresses me. I looked today, and I am just... agh, I just cannot believe the enormous amount of people doing truly, truly, truly awful things. And how they get away with it! Some lady kept 70 pets in such awful conditions that 38 of the 49 cats had to be put down and the question at hand is whether she should be allowed to keep pets anymore. WHY IS THAT A QUESTION?! If someone had 49 babies and neglected 38 to the point that they were too unhealthy to LIVE, would it be a question? I know cats aren't babies, but c'mon now..

A lot of the animal hoarders are sick, sick people. Animal lovers with a mental problem; try to save them all instead of knowing your limits and seeking help. Not evil; just sick. But so many of those other people? You steal a beloved 15-year-old cat to kill it? You let your rottweiler die in your backyard, covered in maggots? You burn a puppy with acid? There's no excuse for these people, letting or making innocence suffer. How about we start treating people who abuse animals and children how they've treated their victims?

All these stories just make me think.. what hope do humans have? When THIS HORRIDNESS is in our nature? Why do we show joy, or even apathy, at another being's suffering?

Blah. So I'm going to return to looking up pictures of kittens and sloths and fishies on Flickr and pretend the Animal Concerns page doesn't exist. I wouldn't want to give up on people entirely and become a hermit by 28, after all.
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
  An excuse to dine out tonight
Dine for America: A restaurant industry benefit for hurricane relief

Mostly chains, some independent restaurants.. At least, I think Bonefish Grill is not a chain, but I have no idea.

Anyway, go out & eat! :)
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
  okay, here's ed's key west story
ed went to key west for a weekend-long bachelorfest of boating, diving, and partying.  he had a good story to report once he got home.
he was spearfishing and managed to catch a really nice, big hogfish.  for those of you who don't dive, hogfish are so well known for being tasty that if your buddy spots one underwater, he will more likely than not pat his tummy in the universal gesture for "hogfish". 
hogfish are not the most attractive of fish, as you see here in the picture.  hogfish is quite an appropriate tag, is it not?
so anyway, ed surfaced with his homely hogfish so that the two guys in the boat could collect it from him and he could go back down.  unfortunately, the guys operating the boat were green - one with seasickness, the other with inexperience.  as they were trying to figure out how to get the boat over to ed, they noticed a dark shape in the water by him.  "ed, there's something in the water with you."  "yeah, guys, ha ha," ed replied, assuming they were trying to pull his chain with the shark myth.  then he realized that the guys were getting more and more convincingly panicked.  ed, holding a spear with a bloody fish at the end, started to get nervous.  helpless in the water, he got reports from the people on the boat: it's off to your left!  now it's to your right!  OH MY GOD, A FIN!!!  the viz was crap, so ed would stick his head under the water but couldn't see anything.  all he knew was that his buddies on the boat were FREAKED OUT.  "THERE IT IS AGAIN!"  "OH MY GOD, A SHARK!!!!!"
so ed dropped his spear, letting his beautiful (ha ha) hogfish and the shark's meal sink into the water. 
then ed got back into the boat.  moments later, he got to see his would-be attacker, who stuck his/her head out of the water and gave a great big smile..
yep, eddie was almost attacked for his hogfish by a fearsome, um, bottlenose shark.  :D
cool, huh?  i was highly impressed.
p.s. for you inquiring commenter wondering who ed is: ed is not a "new guy."  he's the "old guy" actually, now a good friend.  lucas is quite busy with his firefighting training (and moved to delray!) so i haven't even seen him since last sunday.  in any case, i've already told him that once his uniform gets good & dirty, i'm going to get pics of him in it.  y'all will be the first ones i share it with.  ;)
Monday, October 03, 2005
  quick before i go home
i have had absolutely NO time today to update
i had a fun day of sailing on saturday.  got to cuddle with lucy saturday night as ed was out of town so i checked on his cats for him.  i dunno what happened to her, but she's all of a sudden a little vienna sausage on legs and full of affection.
oh, and ed has a cute story from key west i will share with you as there is no eed blog.  so, yeah, that stuff tomorrow.
shana tovah!
I'm Stacey. I'm a 31(!)-year-old Wisconsin girl living in sunny South Florida. The highlights in my life are my lovely boyfriend, my aloof cats, my adorable/adoring stepdogs, my two lumbering tortoises, select family members, being outside, being underwater, taking pictures, yadda yadda. Stay tuned for lots of babbling!

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States


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Making a difference

A small boy lived by the ocean. He loved the creatures of the sea, especially the starfish, and he spent much of his time exploring the seashore.

One day the boy learned there would be a minus tide that would leave the starfish stranded on the sand.

When the tide went out, he went down to the beach, began picking up the stranded starfish, and tossing them back into the ocean.

An elderly man who lived next door came down to the beach to see what the boy was doing. Seeing the man's quizzical expression, the boy paused as he approached. "I'm saving the starfish!" the boy proudly declared.

When the neighbor saw all of the stranded starfish he shook his head and said: "I'm sorry to disappoint you, young man, but if you look down the beach, there are stranded starfish as far as the eye can see. And if you look up the beach the other way, it's the same. One little boy like you isn't going to make much of a difference."

The boy thought about this for a moment. Then he reached his small hand down to the sand, picked up another starfish, tossed it out into the ocean, and said: "Well, I sure made a difference for that one!"

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