Conversations With My Dog

I talk to my dog a lot…

a drawing of laurel's shih tzu dog
Tibet wouldn’t stay still, so this colouration is all wrong.


  • Why do you have a moustache?
  • Who said you could be a dog?
  • What is your tail even for?
  • What’s with all of these feets?
  • Who is this guy even supposed to be?
  • Why is your face so squishy?
  • Why are you so tiny?
  • Why are you so cute?
  • Why don’t you wear pants?


  • You’re just a moustache with a dog attached!
  • You don’t even know what your butt is for!
  • You don’t even know that you’re a dog!
  • You’re just a miniature-sized bear-beast pretending to be a dog!
  • You have a severe moustache disorder!
  • You’re ridiculous!
  • You just sit around in your pyjamas all day!
  • You’re not a real dog!
  • This guy is just a guy!
  • You don’t have the proper license to be a dog!


  • You’re the world’s most fuzziest guys!
  • You’re the smallest guy that ever lived!
  • You have a moustache!
  • You’re tiny!
  • You’re a bear!
  • You’re my best guys!
  • I’m going to eat you!

And, of course, he just stares back at me with a confused look on his face…

…But that’s how humans also respond to me sooooooo…

NaBloPoMo 2014

texts that reads "NaBloPoMo 2014"

I haven’t participated in NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month), an event every November where you post every day for the entire month, in a few years. I near-completely lost interest in NaBloPoMo when it was taken over by BlogHer, a blogging platform for women (duh), and not just because the transition to BlogHer scared most of the men off, but because BlogHer is a cruddy, cruddy website.

Here, have some reasons why I hate BlogHer:

  • First and foremost, BlogHer is exploitative. Most of the posts on the website are written by unpaid community members, while the website is riddled with ads. Community members provide them with content for free, which brings them pageviews and ad impressions, and in return they get, I don’t know, a sense of community or something? You can join a community on BlogSpot or Tumblr and  both of those services allow you to put your own ads on your blog, so that you can get paid for your writing.
  • BlogHer puts outbound links in frames, placing their branding and ads on unaffiliated websites without their consent. This is just plain rude and frames went out of style in the 90s anyway.
  • The current BlogHer website features a tessellated layout and infinite scroll. I’ll probably do a long rant on why I hate these two design trends at a future date, but basically, they screw up navigation and reading comprehension.
  • Their post editor sucks badly.
  • Their name is a stupid pun.

Now, don’t construe this as me being against women having their own safe space for expressing their opinions. I just think that it’s best that such a place doesn’t exploit their talents for monetary gain. When you’re a writer, never work for exposure, or on spec.

So, yeah, this is probably the last you’ll hear about BlogHer from me, because I’m taking NaBloPoMo back from its massive corporate interests for the little guy, or something, I don’t know.

Anyhoo, join me every day this month for more inane rambling.

Wine Watch 2014 – Day 11 – Finally Done!

Yay! It’s the last day of these Mini Wine Pak things! I can finally drink my wine!

a photo of merlot and chardonnay clearing in transparent pouches
Final one of these – yay!

Yep. The bags still look that same as before.

a photo of merlot and chardonnay in clear wine bladders
Yes! Different bags!

You have to drain the fermenting pouches into the wine dispensing bladders.

I learned the hard way that the first bit of wine that you drain will be very clouding and gross, so my chardonnay ended up slightly cloudy. So, yeah, if you do this yourself, drain the first bit of wine into the sink until it isn’t cloudy anymore.

a photo of some boxes of merlot and chardonnay wine in boxes with glasses of wine in front of them
And now boxes! This is amazing!

I’ve just realized that I put the glasses on the wrong sides in this photo. It should be the white wine on the right and the red wine on the left. Meh.

You insert the wine bladders into boxes for dispensing. You can drink directly from the bladders, but you’re classier that that, aren’t you? AREN’T YOU?

a photo of two wine glasses full of chardonnay and merlot
I’m going to dual-wield these!

The taste of the wine is pretty meh. It’s slightly fruity. I find that I really miss the oaky flavour that isn’t there, because they weren’t fermented in wooden casks, as is proper. The internet says you can put wood chips in the fermenting pouches to give it a bit of that cask taste, if you really care about that type of thing.

a photo of the sediment remaining after making chardonnay and merlot

This is the gross sediment that was leftover from the winemaking process. I think I’m going to eat it.

Wine Watch 2014 – Day 10 – Boring

Hey, let’s look in on the Mini Wine Paks, even though they’re not doing anything, because, dammit, I committed to this daily update thing and I’m going to follow through with it, by gum!

a photo of some merlot and chardonnay clearing in transparent bags

Yeah, so, they look pretty much exactly the same as the day before. This was a productive use of my time.

Wine Watch 2014 – Day 9 – Gross Gunk

Are you getting as bored of the Mini Wine Paks as I am? How do people manage to age wine for years?

a photo of some merlot and some chardonnay clearing in transparent bags
These things again?

I think the wines are clearing nicely. The merlot is finally looking red, but the chardonnay still looks like some variety of hobo urine.

They’re not fizzing at all, which is a good sign.

a photo of some sediment at the bottom of a bag of merlot

The sediment seems to have flattened out since yesterday. I think that I’m going to run the wines through a strainer when I’m draining the bags though.

a photo of some sediment at the bottom of a bag of chardonnay

This look likes a hobo peed in a bag of cocaine. Ew.

Wine Watch 2014 – Day 8 – Stabilization and Clarification

Well, today is finally the day, kiddies. The Mini Wine Paks have fermented long enough and it’s time to add the wine stopper and clearer.

Technically, though, they’re already alcoholic and I could drink them now, as long as I didn’t mind drinking bits of dead yeast and grape skins. Yech.

a photo of some merlot and some chardonnay fermenting next to each other
I bet you’re getting sick of seeing these.

So, here’s how the bags looked before I added anything. There are of course subtle differences from previous days, but since I haven’t bother to have a controlled lighting situation throughout this process, you probably can’t actually see the difference.

a photo of some merlot and some chardonnay with wine stopper added
There’s an interesting reaction going on here, but you can’t see it, because this is a still image.

I added the wine stopper and shook the bags vigorously. This killed the yeast and stopped the reaction and the bubbling in the bags. If the yeast isn’t killed completely, my bags could undergo a secondary fermentation and my wines will be fizzy.

a photo of some merlot and some chardonnay with wine clearer added to them
This doesn’t look very clear to me…

I added the two clearers to  the wines. This cause the particles in the bags to start falling to the bottom.

a photo of some sediment in the bottom of the merlot's fermenting bag

Within minutes, there was a large amount of sediment forming on the bottom of the bags. Since the nozzles on the bags are also near the bottom, I’m wondering how I can drain the bags without any of this sediment coming with the wine?