Monday, December 15, 2008

Cogs, dogs and blogs!

Checking in this morning as a representative cog in the universe who has just got into a decade birthday, yay me. another day, another decade! wonderful celebration for me last night catered by Handsome Son, complete with food, presents and CLEANUP afterward, what a gift....

Last time I had a decade birthday I gave myself a complete set of free weights and a book on how to! worked with them faithfully most of the time every since and I attribute my incredible beauty and litheness and ability to lie to their use....seriously, I have been more fit and better off ever since, and it's a blessing, since my current life, owing to partner's serious and increasing disability, is very strenuous, but manageable. I think it wouldn't have been if I hadn't been doing the fitness thing. And I walk a couple of miles each day, as my Indian friend next door says "in any weather, you don't CARE about that weather!" while she stays warmly indoors until spring.

so that was a good decade. This time, I opened this blog, figuring by the time the decade came around I would be totally skilled and proficient in the art of blogging, and you can see how far that came true.....well, it's a goal, folks, and I have a decade to get there...and another little pride of cogness came about this year when Oliver Sacks included some of my writing in his paperback edition of Musicophilia, very thrilling. I love his work, and was so glad he was interested in corresponding with me about synaesthesia, a fave subject of mine, too. So this was good. And he sent me a copy to save my having to buy it, nice touch!

About blogs: a lot of people either can't find the comment button to post a comment, or their systems won't let them through, or something, and I get a lot of entertaining email in response to these entries, which amuses me hugely! I even get responses on other websites where I'm active and that causes me to wonder hm, where am I now??? So different parts of internet life get interwoven, exactly as they do in so-called meatspace. It's lovely, and one of the best toys I've had in a while.

On to dogs:

Have you been reading about this experiment some scientists in, I think Vienna, have been conducting on dogs and jealousy and notions of justice? hilarious: they have been getting dogs to shake a paw in return for a treat, then finding that the dogs who shake a paw and don't get a treat refuse to do it again. Well, duh! anyone with more than about 30 seconds of experience with dogs knows that they are very smart on keeping the rules! if you set up the rule that a pawshake is paid for, they expect it to be paid for. I'm sure dog people have all had the experience of dogs checking for the presence of treats before consenting to sit, stay, lie, read the paper, etc. Nothing to do with notions of justice, just of a fair day's pay for a fair day's work.

My question is where these scientists have been all their lives? and why did they have to set up a special study to discover this? I noted from one picture I saw that the test subjects were border collies. Well, I ask you.

Border collies could have figured out the protocols, written the test, screened for candidates and shown the scientists how to evaluate it....I remember the Golden Fleece awards made by the senator from Wisconsin whose name evades me right now, about the use of tax dollars to study the screamingly obvious. this was Euro money, so I doubt we'll shout much about it. Feel free to post a comment reminding me of the Golden Fleece guy's name.

Speaking of Europe: have you read David Sedaris "Me Talk Pretty One Day" very very funny essays, the best of them about his attempts to master the French language while living in Paris. He's funny in small doses. Best if you hear him narrating himself, but still good in print.

And rereading Busman's Honeymoon, by Dorothy Sayers, many times read before, but it never palls! the picture of Bunter in the back of the car, with bottles of vintage port wrapped in eiderdowns, anxious that it not be joggled and made undrinkable for months...big big deal in his life. and people with Latin and French tags all the time, very funny stuff. And Peter's dotty mother, the best character of the lot. Anyway, Sayers is good.

And so is life around here! Cheers!


  1. I've changed the comments setting in the hope that it will be easier to post a comment and see you succeed!

  2. Ah, 'links to this post' is where they are (it is). Delightful, Liz, and the site is charming. Too funny about the survey and Border Collies - one wonders who's paying the researchers. (Pro-Border Collie people? The Border Collies themselves?)


  3. oh, Happy Birthday here, too! Do you celebrate just on the decade? Glad you had/are having a lovely day.

  4. Happy BD dear Cog! As a wee gift which I think you will enjoy check out this is what got me into knitting.

  5. I've been following yarn harlot for quite a while. she has a nice CD set out which accompanied several of my walks recently. she's quite a character.

  6. Happy b'day, Liz! Many, many more. It was Sen. William Proxmire, from Wisconsin (where I live), who created the Golden Fleece award.

  7. A little birdy (and, well, this post) told me it's your birthday. I hope it's a happy one!

  8. Hi Liz,

    I'm getting all the blog comments emailed to me now. Is that right?? Gave me a bit of a shock! :)

  9. Yes, I'm getting them all too - not that they aren't fun to read, but it kinda fills up the inbox!

  10. Happy belated birthday...don't blame me, Heather told us!

  11. Hm, no, you're not supposed to be getting them all emailed! you're only supposed to get a note saying that they exist if you want to read them. I must look into this! sorry to fill up your inboxes.


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