In vain I Have Struggled….

To write a post. But there are ADD squirrels in my head just now, and I can’t. Also, things going on. Not bad things, just busy.


Post tomorrow.

And because I know you guys:

80 thoughts on “In vain I Have Struggled….

  1. But you didn’t link to the spoken words you left!

    Paul Frees would be proud; use The Voice to move the squirrels! Or, call on Gibney and Cloyd …

  2. Our beloved Miniature Schnauzer, 15 year old Scooter, was diagnosed with liver cancer yesterday. He had been lethargic and eating poorly for weeks when we took him in for an exam. We will have him euthanized Friday. I have never had a pet long enough to experience its death. I know we are doing the right thing because he is in pain, but I never dreamed it would be this hard. Any prayers or good wishes you can spare would be greatly appreciated.

    1. So sorry. Be there with him as he is given the shot that will put him to sleep. The second shot will stop his heart so he won’t feel any pain. The clinic should let you hold him until you are ready to go. Our veterinarian clinic will do paw prints of your lost pet, even if they die at home which our last one did. Ask about it. It is a remembrance.

      Losing a pet is never easy. So sorry.

      1. I can vouch for that. Be there.

        I lost a cat to FIP. Basically he just went south very fast, and we had to put him to sleep. It was sad, but at the same time, we weren’t even sure if he would have lasted the night. And in his case, I think he was ready for it. Not every pet entirely is, but being there was good.

        1. In 44 years we’ve had and lost 11 cats, and 5 dogs. It is so much easier on us when we were able to hold and pet them as they passed, and hold them afterwards; never easy, but easier.

          We’ve only lost two too early. One to cancer at age 3, and the most recent to sudden critical kidney failure. Each of these two we tried too hard to hang on to them because they were so young. But it wasn’t fair to them, we made the hard decision. Our other animals as they got elderly, they began to let us know it was time (some as “young” as 10, the big dogs, to our eldest cat who was just short of 22 years old). Doesn’t mean we didn’t try to stretch it as long as possible, but they let us know.

          It is hard. Their short lives are the price we pay for their companionship and love.

          1. I have heard it said that we are like elves to a pet. We live these enormous long lives and can be close to many generations of them and have all this incomprehensible “magic” like cars, frisbees, and electric can openers.

            I certainly like to think of my beloved pets waiting happily for on the white shores of the far west to lead me further up and further in.

    2. Sorry to hear that. We’ve had four of ours cross the rainbow bridge since 2005, and we miss them still. The procedure varies; our experience in Flyover Falls has been a single shot of a sedative, (so “going to sleep” is fairly appropriate) and the vets we’ve done this with have all let us be with the dogs as they pass.

      FWIW, after Sara the Lab-Aussie died (she wouldn’t give up while I was recovering from a major injury and the surgical recovery), we lasted about two weeks before Kat the border collie entered our life. Sara came to us a few weeks after Knight succumbed to cancer. He was only 13, but Sara was almost 17.

      It’s dusty in here. Snif.

    3. I wrote this when our hostess’s Greebo passed… I think the sentiment applies here, too:

      A shadow passes by Valhalla;
      The grim doors clear the way.
      The tales, the tuna, they call him,
      But he scorns the lost battle’s day.

      The skalds chant out his deeds,
      But blithely he passes them by.
      There are other voices he heeds,
      Voices that to a weary warrior cry.

      He finds next a gate of gold,
      Beside it a book and chair.
      A kindly man beckons him,
      And the shadow comes to stare.

      “Come here, come here, sir shadow,
      Ye echo of a soul,
      You gave of yourself so greatly,
      Come, rest, and be made whole.

      “Your Lady will yet come for you.
      Come rest and bide the days.
      We have sent others to stand sentry,
      And guard her in her ways.”

      The shadow nodded slowly
      And joined the family line,
      Of those shadows who awaited
      The sharing of life divine.

      And Peter turned from the throng of shadows,
      To the long and biding queue,
      And one by one souls entered,
      And the shadows who still knew them, turned souls and entered, too.

      1. Wyrdbard- tears from me too….. ❤ thank you. And indeed, OUR tears are the price we willingly pay, for the privilege of making a good life for our feathered, furred or finned brethren.

      2. Wrote this back in 2002 at the passing of one of our beloveds.

        Thank you for time too short
        I shared with you.
        I miss your charm and grace.
        You always brought such Joy.

        Always so sure
        how life was lived.
        Your leaps of Joy
        a thrill to see.

        But you are gone.
        Your time so short.
        Now buried in the ground
        cold death seized you.

        Never more to meet on earth
        to share our love and Joy.
        The love we shared
        only bitter pain of loss.

        Yet deep in my soul
        I know we’ll meet again.
        Where pain does cease and Joy abounds.
        Where tears are washed away.

        Then such bliss
        to know you forever.
        Till then,
        goodbye beloved.

        (c) Presbypoet 1-22-02

        Twenty years ago. Time flies so swiftly.

    4. MONGO – prayers rising, and as has been said be sure you are holding him or snuggling him and SMILING while he is given final mercy; no tears until later, you do not want your pup to be sad from your emotions. My late wife and I did animal rescue for many years and you always know up front that your animal family trusts you to do whatever is needed, they cannot be left to endure suffering on our account.. You are doing right, be brave and I am proud of you. God be with you always.

    5. Never let a pet die alone if you can help it. I know it seems harder to be there but have the courage to let your final act for him be to help him through the fear and pain.

      I have grown frail, I am weak,
      And pain keeps me from my sleep.
      You must now do what must be done
      For this final battle cannot be won.

      Do not let anguish, fear, or grief
      Keep me from this last relief.
      And do not regret; for it must be you
      who this thing decides to do.

      So take me where my needs they’ll tend,
      And stay with me until the end.
      Hold me tight and speak to me
      Until my eyes no longer see.

      Although my tail has wagged its last
      My pain and torment now are past.
      On this day more than all the rest,

      Your love and friendship stood the test.

      Okay, it’s not good poetry and a little sappy but it helped my daughter get through the euthanasia of her beloved Mitchell. I offer it here in the hope it will also help you. My wish is that your dog’s final thoughts are happy ones.

    6. Of course.

      All things end as all things must.
      The stars burn down and go to dust
      And all men make shall be erased
      within these bounds of time and space.

      So we bow our heads and weep.
      But darling child this secret keep.
      They live, all that were bright and loved
      Forever in the mind of God.

    7. Condolences, and yes, they leave a hole, but the joy is worth it. 2 of my cats are entombed, back when I was poor, and the last 2 that passed were cremated by the vet I use, and their ashes are next to each other, as they were Sisters from different litters (same Tom and Queen)

  3. Our beloved Miniature Schnauzer, 15 year old Scooter, was diagnosed with liver cancer yesterday. He had been lethargic and eating poorly for weeks when we took him in for an exam. We will have him euthanized Friday. I have never had a pet long enough to experience its death. I know we are doing the right thing because he is in pain, but I never dreamed it would be this hard. Any prayers or good wishes you can spare would be greatly appreciated.

    1. My sympathies. Taking one of my old cats for her last vet trip after she’d gone blind and had either a stroke or a brain tumor that caught up with her was one of the hardest things I did even if she did have a good 16 years.

    2. So so sorry. I have a menagerie waiting for me at the end of the rainbow bridge. It is always hard. Prayers for your baby, and so that the hole in your heart heals in due time.

    3. Another favorite poem:

      I keep watch!
      If I am not here
      who will guard their house?
      Hatch over their sheep?
      Be faithful?
      No one but You and I,
      what faithfulness is.
      They call me, “Good dog! Nice dog!”
      I take their pats
      and the old bones they throw me
      and I seem pleased.
      They really believe they make me happy.
      I take kicks too
      when they come my way.
      None of that matters.
      I keep watch!
      do not let me die
      until, for them,
      all danger is driven away.

        1. (In a high pitched voice like June Foray) Aw Bullwinkle you know that trick never works…

  4. Ah so the RLF is up to it’s usual nefariousness? Give them a new target? A certain harpy and her minions that went after LArry. you heard about this one I assume. Just think of the fun we could have listening to them scream a different type of scream as the RLF proceeds to drive them over the brink from entitled asininity with delusions of adequacy, into complete gibbering insanity!

  5. So, you obviously need SUBTRACT squirrels. Before they MULTIPLY. COS otherwise it would be a SIN to go off on a TANGENT.

    1. Do you need someone to cosine that pun?
      (Apologies if this appears twice. WP, what can I say?)

    1. Yup, the government demands a monopoly on all misinformation and disinformation.———————————
      Morticia: “Don’t torture yourself, Gomez. That’s my job.”

  6. Well, it’s that time. The FICUS is bringing shame to America by mumbling, stumbling and ranting through a ‘State Of The Union’ speech that has zero resemblance to reality. I’ve heard a dozen blatant lies in the first few minutes and I don’t think I can stand to listen to many more.

    Ugh, now the puppet-in-chief has just proclaimed “An economy that works for everyone” after delivering an economy that doesn’t work for anybody. I turned the TV off before the temptation to heave bricks through the screen became irresistible.

    It’s a farce, and not even an entertaining one.
    The government subsidizes failure. Successful enterprises do not need subsidies.

    1. Dude, you knew what it was going to be before you turned it on.
      Why give him the power to enrage you?
      You have no obligation to participate in the farce.
      Now, if there’s going to be a Greek chorus, sign me up.

      Seriously. This crap is a laser pointer being used to distract and control you. Don’t react the way they want you to.
      Go off script.
      Act according to your opportunities and judgements, in your own time.
      Most of the power they have over you, is what you freely give them.

      1. Hey, it was touted as an Important Historic Event. In its own twisted way, I guess it sort of was. We got to see a full-dress clown show masquerading as Great Leaders.

      2. I skipped it.

        Mostly because I dislike singing

        Lies, lies lies lies……


        MST3K rifftrack FICUS speeches! Pay per view possibility? Drinking game possibility?

    2. Just caught the text recap of Governor Sanders’ GOP response. She gets it —
      “The dividing line in America is no longer between right or left. The choice is between normal and crazy.”

      1. Politics is a sphere. On it are marked “crazy” and “you”.

        Try to be as far from crazy as you can get. But any motion is effectively towards it.

  7. Squirrel? That’s what a squirrel rifle is for! Allow me to recommend a .36 caliber flintlock.

    1. The Reader thinks that a .36 flintlock is more a squirrel disintegrater rather than a rifle.

      1. Could be worse, could be a Brown Bess at ~ .69 . Of course the odds of hitting a squirrel with a musket unless the barrel is in contact with the critter are pretty low…

        1. I can easily get a-zone hits out to 25m with a smooth bore pistol.


          One upon a time, I was out at my favorite pistol range, shooting several blackpoweder revolvers. A mouthy young know it all was talking smack, and using foul language, all around women and children.

          “Are you not worried some gentleman will call you out for the smack talk around women and children?”

          “Yeah, like you or any other shithead here have proper dueling pistols.”

          (I unzipped the case containing a pair of .45cal flintlock pistols) (feral grin) “Like these?”

          “Uh…. are those…”

          “Pick one. The first round on my target hits the a-zone. Hundred bucks.”


          “Pick one. Make it interesting. Five hundred bucks cash.”

          “I apologize for the language.” (Packs and departs)

          Oh well….

          A good straight smoothbore barrel, patched properly and tight, is surprisingly accurate at “social” distances.

  8. I know US/Rome comparisons are not entirely apt, but a comment on one of them sparked something kind of funny in my head. The guy was observing that, for all the parallels, the US versions of the decline are all way less violent.

    If you look at the way Trump parallels the role of the Gracchus brothers, both attempted populist reforms and were thwarted by the entrenched establishment, to the overall decline of the republic, and (potentially) marked a major turning point in political discpurse.

    The big difference though is the Gracchus brothers were killed by the establishment, where as Trump has only metaphorically been backstabbed a double dozen times.

    Which implies that future parallels are probably going to be of the less than violent version too, and the fall being more along the lines of everybody just sort of stops talking the federal government seriously, rather than any sort of armed military coup.

    And I do find the image of some future administration being little more than an old broke aristos club telling each other and anyone who bothers to listen how wonderful they really are and awarding each other immense salaries in a currency no one uses or even cares about anymore.

    Not saying there would not be hardship or suffering in that scenario either, but I’m sort of thinking it will be more from systems people depend on breaking down, rather than the great ravenous hoards rising through or bouts of a national barber. But it would be uniquely American to have both one of the most bloody and violent civil wars imaginable and then one of the least.

          1. That works, IFF the url ends with the name of the image file, as in ~~~~filename.jpg or .png or maybe .gif. Other than that… sometimes WP too simple. Moo.

      1. Easy enough. I just opened the image in a new tab and added “.png” to the end of the address. Sometimes little tricks like that work.

  9. After a turtle, two hamsters, a lot of guppies and goldfish, five cats, three dogs, a divorce, and two cancers, I don’t have the psychic stamina to have more pets. Sorry. I just don’t.

    But I understand the loss. It can be very much like losing a human loved one. And sometimes, even more emotional. We humans are funny that way. Lots of walls we build inside to try to protect ourselves.

    May all of you be blessed in 2023. May the Lord comfort you in difficult times and give you peace.

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