Please Note that while we convert to new blogware to replace that which our website host has discontinued, posts to the blog itself cannot be uploaded or accessed. However, jpegs & short messages such as those below can be published here at the Homepage for your review, enjoyment and edification(?!!). -CCF
the sweetest little girl who ever shared my home died of pneumonia yesterday morning at the grand old age of 12, which actually wasn't a bad age for a feline runt who’d come down with sniffles and colds that’d often turn into upper respiratory infections every few months since the day i adopted her from a san diego shelter as sunny’s little sibling a few months after his litter-mate and brother, sammy, was hit and killed by a car (the last time any of my animules have been outside -- but at least sammy died without really knowing what hit him, as was obvious from the single wound on the side of his head and the ‘testimony’ of the weeping gal who’d hit him just three or four houses away from me and had called and met me where she’d lain him on the grass).
at any rate, i'd taken bunny to the animal emergency hospital on friday morning because it was obvious that the upper respiratory infection which she'd come down with every few months since she was a kitten and was just a part of life with bunny -- vet visits and shots and pills and vitamin supplements (god i loved it when she'd get better and be herself again, esp when she'd bound into the bedroom and jump onto the bed and onto my lap or chest while i was reading or watching tv or napping!).
anyway, by friday morning it was clear that she wasn't getting over this one as quickly as in the past. in the spring she'd lost 2 of her 6 lbs but put back on 1 lb (and i luvluvluved feeding her the moist canned food she luvluvluved and patting her little tiny belly) and this time the sniffles had turned into pneumonia pretty quickly and long story short, after the vet had given her a shot and a round of rehydration and pills, it was pretty obvious to me by friday afternoon that her body probably did not have the wherewithal to rebound. so i did what we do...
first, i made her 'comfortable' in her special spot on the red blanket in the wicker basket under her ‘sun lamp’ (she LOVED lying in the sun, whether natural or artificial!) and i encouraged her to drink and/or eat, which she was not doing, and i even fixed up a slurry consisting of a dab of vitamin gel and a dab of a high-calorie/protein gel and her pill and the beef gravy from a can of cat food, and i mixed it all together in a kitten bottle i’d bought for the occasion (i’d done this before and it’d worked insofar as bringing her around to wanting to eat and drink and put weight back on, but of course she’d never been this bad off and i knew it was a long shot) and i fed her and she drank it and i held her and petted her and told her how sweet she was and how much i loved her and hoped she’d get better, as i always did when she was not merely sick but really sick, and i put her back in her basket because i knew that she wanted to be left alone to sleep in peace.
i had her in bed with me through the night and woke up every couple of hours, the way we do, and she was just so emaciated and spacey, i could tell that her little body had probably gone beyond the point at which it could come back. and when she vomited a gush of watery brownish/green bile that was probably the entire contents of her stomach, i just knew what was coming, and i dreaded it, but i knew of course that i had to help her to as comfortable and ‘loving’ a death as she could have, and deserved to have, not only because she was a fellow being, but she’d given me SO much love and even comfort (when ramon died last year, her and sunny just being there with me), so i cleaned her up and laid her on my stomach and chest the way she loved to lay on my stomach and chest, the way i had of course always loved for her to do (except when it was actually time to turn onto my side and go to sleep, which i’d do so gingerly you’d think i’d have a half-dozen newly hatched chicks on fresh-laid eggs on my chest instead of a little cat who was quite adept at insinuating herself into any position as i changed positions on the nights she wanted to snuggle alongside me, which were probably hundreds and hundreds of nights over those dozen years) and i petted her very very gently so as not to discomfort her, and i talked to her for a while, and i fell asleep a couple of times but each time i woke up, she was still breathing, which has always amazed me when i’ve been in the presence of those who are passing on ‘any time now’ – seems our bodies don’t need to expend much energy when the heart just beats and we just continue to breathe, because it seems sometimes to take SO much longer than it seems it will.
luckily, she was never in any distress or pain, and she drifted in a kind of daze (or maybe she was more-or-less asleep but her eyes were open because cats don’t have eyelids and it takes muscle power to close their eyes and her body simply wasn’t expending that muscle power on closing her eyes, it was utilizing whatever energy it had left just to keep her heart beating and her lungs inhaling and exhaling as it wound down [I often think of animals, including us, of course, as being like those old wind-up toys, when it comes to the energy our bodies have – at birth, it gets all wound up until you can’t wind it another notch, and we’re a wound-up bag of bones and organs that’s wailing and flailing and doesn’t even know where or what it is; and as we age, the wind-up mechanism plays out – we’re kids running and jumping all over the place – we’re teens full of life and love and dreams and lots of whatnot – we’re adults still full of energy and then we’re older adults still with energy and then we’re middle-aged adults with the energy of middle-aged adults and then we’re older adults and older and older until, if we make it, we’re such old animals that our wind-up mechanism can be clearly seen to be winding down and our skin doesn’t have the spring to cling tightly to our muscles anymore and our eyes aren’t really bright anymore and this and that ‘system’ starts to wane and whatnot and ultimately, should we make it, there’s a deathbed on which our bodies just wind down and wind down and wind down until there’s no energy left in the wind-up ‘mechanism of life’ – and at some point, that’s that, the wind-up toy has stopped moving at all and doesn’t have one more little burst of energy to get one more movement out of it, and that’s the end]).
it honestly took hours, and it honestly actually shocked me – i was honestly SHOCKED – at how long a span of time – HOURS – from the time she vomited and was clearly dying, until she actually breathed her last breath. and i was lying there, as you can imagine, literally hour after hour from about 5AM until 11AM, and the sun came up and i heard people about their business, and sunny would come and go, usually lying near the bed, every now and then actually hopping up and coming over, sniffing her, knowing what was going on, i’m sure (their sense of smell is so much better than ours – they can smell water from miles away, an ability which we probably once had, too, but have lost – they can smell disease and decay and that’s often why dogs and cats sometimes either stay away from, or stay with, those who are sick and in the process of dying) and so at any rate, she heaved a few final deep breaths and as i lay there crying, not just for her and my loss of her but for ramon, the love of my life, whose death just last year was brought back to me because there were so many, many times this past year that i’d lay in bed on my back crying for ramon, and for myself, and for my dead dreams of us being together again, and that was the exact position we’d be in – i’d be lying on my back in bed with the sun outside but the blinds still down, and i’d be crying for ramon, and sunny would be somewhere around, and bunny would be on my chest and i’d be petting her and honestly so, SO grateful to have her there on my chest, so sweet, so loving, and there i was yesterday morning and the tears were just streaming from my eyes as i sort of ‘petted her into death’ and when she finally breathed what i knew was her last breath, and i looked and saw that she wasn’t breathing anymore, i just wept, not merely for her or for me or for ramon, whose death seems again so immediate to me and whose loss feels almost as fresh as the week after he died, but honestly, i was crying for all of the deaths which all of us have suffered, and will suffer, since the beginning of time.
i just lay there and i just cried for all of the pain and the loss and disease and the death that we suffer through, being alive. from the first human who understood death and suffered the loss through death of the first human whose death made the others cry, and for millions of others through millions of years up to and including the current round of disease and destruction and death in africa and the middle east and eastern europe and missouri and any other piece of earth with an animal living, and dying, on it. i just lay there and i quietly let the tears roll down my cheeks for my little bunny and for ramon and for myself and for a friend’s little dog who died last week and an in-laws’ in-law who died just a few days ago, and the people and the animals who were dying at the same moment that bunny had just died, and those who’d die five minutes later, ten minutes later, a half hour later, a day later, a week later, and even those who haven’t even been born yet but will one day suffer that pain of the loss through death of a person, whether a human person or a feline person or a canine person or an equine person or a rodent person or whatever other kind of person there is – i honestly felt sorry for every single one of us and was crying for every single one of us and our dying, deceased loved ones.
but my heart kept beating and i kept on breathing, and after a while, unable to sleep (i would actually have liked to have fallen asleep with her on my chest, even knowing it wasn’t really her anymore but her dead body, on my chest, just to be able to feel one last time what it had felt like, because it had always been so sweet; but i couldn’t fall asleep, and i couldn’t lie there with her body on me any longer than i did), i got up and laid her on her blanket, carried her on her blanket into the living room, where sunny was hanging out, and laid her there on the floor and sat beside them both so that he could know what had happened before she disappeared. i’d done the same thing with sammy’s body when he was hit by the car over a dozen years ago in san diego, and sunny did the same thing yesterday as he’d done then – he got up and went over to his deceased sibling, he looked, he sniffed a couple of times, he looked, and he walked off and lay down a few feet away from us, in the same room, but looking away.
i took her collar and tag (a red heart-shaped metal tag – the same as sunny has – with an ‘inscription’ that says, “Hi, I’m Bunny! $100 Reward! Call 619-889-9270” which was my phone number before i changed it last week to an east coast 518 area code) and i put them on the fridge next to the picture of sammy, alongside which i will shortly place a picture of bunny, too. and i wrapped her up in her red blanket and i wound almost an entire spool of string around and around her blanket, and i put her inside of a box into which she fit just right, and (because i don’t have a yard of my own and am not about to ask a family member “hey, can i bury my cat in your yard?” especially as they’ve all got dogs, anyway, and…) i put the box into a dumpster on the property (yeah, i know, but what else to do in the city?) and i figure that her body, which is not my sweet little bunny and i honestly know that, will end up at the dump, and from there, dust to dust.
as i’ve written this, and now finish up and wipe away the tears that have fallen as i’ve written this (as i’m sure you can imagine – and have imagined, those of you who know me well and have stayed with me to this point), my little punkin, who is sometimes known as my little punkinhead, but more often than not just ‘punky’ or more simply, ‘punk’ – as in, ‘hey, punk, what’s up?’ – (because he made a ‘ball’ out of a little pumpkin i’d put on my dining table his first halloween – and i let him keep it because, why not?) and as he was rolling it around the floor, i’d asked him, ‘are you my little pumpkin?” and, of course, without another thought, that’s what he’d become, my little punkin) – sunny – my little sunny sunshine (who is also known as sunny cherry – a story for another time) is sleeping underneath my desk and i am sooooooooo grateful and lucky and happy that he’s been in my life the past sixteen years (!) as healthy and happy a cat as can be. and while I know that his death will be the one non-human death that will REALLY rip a hole in my heart (and let’s be honest, it’ll hurt even more than a lot of human deaths i’ll have to deal with in my time, simply because he’s been my sweetest boy and little buddy for so long and through so much of my life – 16 years of my 53 is almost a full third of my present-day lifetime!) – i will leave that to be dealt with on the day that’ll need to be dealt with, and deal with today as i can.
and today, this afternoon, right now, at this very minute during this particular segment of the time allotted to the life i am living on this little parcel of the world on which i am alive, it really is a lovely afternoon with clouds listlessly rolling around the sun, temps in the 70s, a marvelous breeze, a migraine that just won’t quit, and with sweet music on my little desktop stereo, parents in their 80s whose love and support has never been in doubt, countless other family members with whom i’m reconnecting after thirty years away and, without seeming syrupy (because we all know i’m not that – oh, no, not THAT!) at this very moment, i have 53 years’ worth of gladness and sadness and love in my heart and my head – memories of people and other animals i have loved and been lucky enough to have been loved by, and there’s the blessing.
and, final note, i guess (because the line has been going through my mind for days now – ever since i saw ‘a streetcar named desire’ for the first time from beginning to end, just a few nights ago – and it echoes what i’ve told myself so many times but not in so many words) as eunice tells stella before the stranger has come to take blanche away in the final scene, ‘Life has got to go on. No matter what happens, you've got to keep on going.’
so here i go.
- Christopher Corbett-Fiacco (© 2014)
08/12/14: i guess it's also as good a day as any to reveal what i'd only told one person thus far about the drowning death of the love of my life on 06/25/13 (waiting for 'the right time' to just say it and start to talk/write about it), which is that, about a month before his death, ramon had greeted me on the phone with a resigned but hopeful-as-possible, "hi, chris, my name's ramon, and i'm an alcoholic." he could have blown me over with a breath. month-long story short, he'd not only been drinking to excess with a dui and more recent black-outs and a few falling-down-in-the-house or out in the back yard incidents sometimes resulting in mild injury, but had twice had to have his mom take him to the emergency room and spent a weekend and then a week in detox, 'drying out' and testing the waters of rehab. i was actually excited in an odd way -- it would bring us closer and i would help him get sober and stay sober and we would finally have that 'i love you as you are and am committed to you for life and will help you always' relationship we'd tried several times but couldn't seem to get 'quite right' (maybe trying too hard to get it 'quite right'?) -- and we could even, eventually, marry -- the possibility of which was always a dream more his than mine. but within the month of phone calls and encouragement and remniscences and laughter and meandering daydreamy tentative plans for whatever might come our way, on that tuesday that he'd finally come to the conclusion that he actually, really was an alcoholic (it's not something ANYBODY wants to be or admit to being and takes a person as long as it takes that person to actually fully understand it when they realize it as they finally sigh and say, 'yeah, okay, it's true -- i am an alcoholic. so now what?') on that tuesday, after a month or more of not quite really being certain that he was, after all, an alcoholic (and i know that place, and can never blame anyone for taking as long as it takes him or her to move through and beyond it) -- at some point in time after he had clearly, really realized and understood and accepted it, at some point in time after he had called his mom at work at ten in the morning to let her know that he had made an appointment to enter rehab the next morning, he stumbled again out in the back yard and drowned drunk in the in-ground pool that had become a swamp in the back yard. and that's where his mom -- such a wonderful, hardworking woman who'd lived through so much in cuba and here and had come to fear exactly that, and had told him (as he had told me) that that was exactly what she had come to fear -- that's where his mom found him floating face down when she got home from work around 5:30. and i think about him, and about her, every single day. and i know, i really do, that if he had lived through that day and entered rehab on the next morning, he would have gotten sober and maintained his sobriety because he was the kind of stubborn personal promise keeper who succeeds in recovery. and as difficult as it has been and doubtless always will be knowing that the person i loved more than i've ever loved anybody else in my entire life died in an accident which he set into motion because he hadn't yet really understood that he really was an alcoholic, i cannot even begin to imagine how horrible it must be to know that that person actually consciously intentionally ended his or her life because it was too painful to endure another moment, and that's what mrs robin williams is going through, and as difficult as what i've been going through, has been, i don't even want to try to begin to imagine what she's enduring. ho fumbling hum, eh? - chris.
And if at all interested, Click Here for the poetry collection The Faithful Heart by yours truly @ Amazon.com.
CLICK HERE TO READ ALL ABOUT HOW "THE PURDYS THICKEN(ed) THE PLOT" BY SUING ME for telling my own true & telling tale as if Americans don't have the right to free speech when it comes to their own life stories ? ! ! Aye, Carumba! Muchos Lococajones, Batman!
AND IF YOU LIKE THOSE, YOU DEFINITELY WANT TO READ "the latest little purdy turdy" & "Ladies and Gentleman, Anthony DiVincenzo!" & "Further Proof Provided to The Court that Apparently Even Under Penalty of Perjury Jim Purdy Is A Liar and A Fraud" & "Purdjery. James Purdjery." & "Jim & Minnie Purdy's SLAPP Dance" & "Anti-SLAPPing the Sorry Asses' Sorry Asses" & find out what "Malicious Prosecution" is all about!
But wait! There's more! Because the Purdy/Prime lawsuit itself has now set us (and so many more of their past victims as well) on a path along which we have already learned some incredibly incredible and important inner insights I've shared and continue to share such as those that led me to send "from the bottom of my heart Regret" and to receive a reply by way of a note of appreciation that just blew me away even as the "Purdys Maintain 2 for 2 Loss vs Corbett-Fiacco and Free Speech" and "harassment continues" while I undertook my demonstration to the court and to everyone else that Jim Purdy is clearly a liar when I began "Page 1 of 26, Your Honor, With Exhibits A-Q" and followed up with "Plaintiff Jim Purdy's Untruthful Statements and Accusations (continued), Your Honor." And so the saga continues with "flyering" and "california dreamin" while the Purdys and their attorney continue the bullshit with which they only end up smearing themselves.
And along the long and winding road that has become the storyline of this part of my life, I post other posts, some fun(ny), some not, such as "wwid?" ~ "August 1st, 2012" ~ "Thurs 080212" ~ "Sat 08/04 @ 11:15am" ~ "WHEW!" ~ "Tuesday, August 7, 2012 @ 11:45ampst" ~ "080812 @ 5:30pm" ~ "excuse me, sir? madam?..." ~ "nobody will remember you as a whore (unless you acted like one)" ~ "week's end project" and "09/12/12." Of course you can also Begin Reading the memoir "Memories of OPM, Ferret Face Purdy and the Farr Irrish Brraying Brridal Whoorr" ...
All of this and so much more about the people and places in San Diego and around the world who think they can treat us any way they want to and get away with it because they think they've got the power and the smarts and legal teams to do it. Until now. Because in the 21st Century, the truth (and telling it to the whole wide world on the worldwide web) will set you free and change your sense of victimization to triumph by doing nothing more than simply telling the truth. And who doesn't feel better after getting something off their chest and alerting the rest of us to be aware of the people and places we need to beware of before they do unto us as they've done unto others? You may not believe your ears, but you can trust your eyes when you Read All About It at TellingTalesTold.com!
* Even when we ourselves [and me, myself & I (sofar)] are the ones we're telling a telling tale about! And we're even courteous enough to provide notification of the publication of the telling tale told to those about whom the telling tale was told... about... as well as the opportunity to offer reply. Because, honestly, fair is fair.
** Our Reader Reviews include comments and stories such as those about "Paul Perv" ~ "BMW of San Diego and The Bartending Academy in North Park" ~ "SOS & CalProp" ~ "West Star Properties" ~ "Mossy Nissan of Kearny Mesa" ~ "Staxxs on Deck" and "Atlas Construction" as well as Readers' Telling Tales about other people and places, too, such as "Highya, Neighbor" and "Brown Hot Steamin' Friday."
© 2012-2013 Christopher Corbett-Fiacco. All rights reserved.