The Weird Things I Find Oddly Amusing #3,539

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I used to write a weekly column for a local paper when I lived in Colorado. The town leaned heavily conservative, and being a liberal, proud feminist of color, I received my fair share of nasty letters and the occasional death threat.

I was still surprised, though, when an email landed in my Inbox an entire year after I’d already stopped writing for the paper and had moved back to Dallas. What surprised me wasn’t the content but the fact that this reader felt such a burning desire to hurl virtual flaming torches at me for a column I’d long since forgotten already. This much, I remember: it was about abortion.

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What I found most amusing was that he actually thought I’d be remotely interested in engaging him by responding to the email.

Er, no. But it does make good blog fodder.

Walking While Working – Another Step For Focus

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Marjorie R. Asturias:

Been wanting to get a treadmill desk for awhile. Now that I have the Bekant standing desk from IKEA, now I just need to get the actual “tread” part suitable for it.

Quite a few of my colleagues at Automattic have already jumped on the treadmill desk bandwagon, including Aaron (below). I’m suffering now from tread-desking envy, especially as I glance at my FitBit and see just how woefully low my numbers are. Snow and ice outside the window will do that to you.

Originally posted on The Dangling Pointer:

Walking While You Work

I’m not going to link to any articles or research about the benefits of walking while you work. I’ve been standing at my desk since I started working at home and to me this is the next progression. I have ADHD and I’m always trying to find ways to hack my brain. I decided to get in on the treadmill desk game.

The First Steps

A couple months back I ended up buying a cheapie treadmill on Amazon to experiment with walking while working. I used it a couple of times with some success but I ultimately felt it didn’t provide much help for my focus. I kept doing research to determine what the issue was and spent time observing myself during a walking session with it. I was surprised it wasn’t obvious why I didn’t like this experiment.

Primarily the treadmill is too narrow for my…

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Teenage Barbie

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I found a box of vintage Barbie clothing and the Great One herself just lying out on the curb, waiting for trash pickup.

Someone’s trash, my new treasure.

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Hopefully not goodbye

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My longtime foster of a year and a half, Apollo, was adopted last week.

I found him one hot, humid morning in July of 2013, in a dismal, desperately poor neighborhood in Dallas. He was walking with a man and his son, but I could tell immediately that he was alone, that he had simply joined the two on their walk for company, that there was no connection between them other than the sidewalk that briefly shared.

He was emaciated, at least 15, possibly 20 pounds underweight, with a dull black coat and sad brown eyes. It took me nearly 45 minutes to coax this gentle giant into the back of my car, but he also clearly didn’t want to be left behind. He leaned heavily against my leg as he contemplated his face and stroked his ear, as if willing me to stay. With the help of a passing stranger who worked in the office building nearby, we were able to shove him rather inelegantly but successfully into my car at last.

Once he took that leap of faith, he never looked back. His defining trait was
a fierce loyalty that was heart-melting as it was heartbreaking.

After weeks of terrible confinement and discomfort while he recovered from heartworm treatment, then months of near-misses with potential adopters and interested visitors, eventually he became a part of our home, our family life, the rhythm of our days. At some point I think I believed that he had become ours, and that was that.

Then a wonderful family that promised him a forever home and all the love he could possibly want and deserves came, and our precious hours with him wound down to the last, wide-eyed, grasping seconds. And now he’s gone.

I miss him.

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The Love/Hate Relationship of Social Media and Rescue

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Marjorie R. Asturias:

If I had a dime for every “SOMEONE SAVE THIS DOG” comment on a post about a stray/abused/neglected/about-to-be-euthanized dog, I could probably build my own animal sanctuary.

Originally posted on Dog Hair & Bourbon:

Oh, the double-edged sword of Facebook. Rescuers know it well – what started as a brilliant method for sharing dogs in need and utilizing well-meaning volunteers has effectively become what many of us will consider the biggest thorn in our sides. This is a long read, so get comfortable.

Facebook – social media in general, really – is responsible for the lives of thousands of animals that would have never made it out of the shelter alive. Suddenly, low-budget shelters with no ability to share photos and information of the dogs in their facilities gained a free platform to spread the word about their strays and adoptables. Animals started finding rescues and adopters from all over, just because somebody saw their picture on Facebook and decided to help. Groups were formed for transport coordination, breed rescues, etc. and folks really jumped on the bandwagon to help the animals. I mean

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Your Pit Bull

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Marjorie R. Asturias:

B. recently rescued an emaciated young pit bull at the train station. He was on his way to work and found her eagerly scampering from one commuter to another at the platform, desperately trying to capture someone’s attention. If she wasn’t being ignored, she was being actively avoided. Who wants to be even near a pit bull, “knowing” their reputation?

Thankfully, B. knows better. He scooped up the little girl, and she’s now safe in a loving foster home, waiting for her forever family to choose her and take her home with them. She loves hugs, is the very manifestation of pure joy, and plays with anyone possessing enough energy to keep up with her.

Her name is Wednesday.

Thanks to more stories like this one from The Dad Letters, I hope there’ll be many more bridges built, love shared, trust given, friendships made, “reputations” restored.

Originally posted on The Dad Letters:

Dear River,

I want to tell you a story about your dog, Zoe. We found her cowering at the pound. She wasn’t barking like the other dogs. She was simply laying there, looking up at us. The tag said, “lab mix” and she was slated to be killed in a week. We fell for it, thinking we were buying a lab.

She is not a lab. She is a pit bull.

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As Zoe grew, we came to realize the pound had lied. I was scared. I felt irresponsible for letting this type of dog into my home. All of the stereotypes, preconceptions and worries filled my mind. Should I take her back? What would people think of us?

She is the definition of disenfranchised. When first time guests visit we lock her in her cage, not because she is dangerous, but because of unspoken fears. She receives wary glances from strangers as…

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