My mother is 74, yet she still works four days a week, walks her dog two to three times a day, and prepares some of the most labor-intensive holidays dishes this side of the Imperial Palace. Today, for instance, I offered to lend a hand and spent a couple of hours carefully arranging mussels and scampis, basting each morsel with garlic butter and oil, following up with a healthy sprinkling of breadcrumbs, parsley, garlic, and parmesan, then topping them off with a second basting. By the time I was done, I could barely lift my left arm. Yet, to my mother, it’s no big deal at all. All this said, she did admit to me the other day that she was feeling old age catch up with her. “I work six hours straight and I’m exhausted,”she told me. I pointed out that working six hours straight would exhaust pretty much anyone to which she responded: “I used to work thirteen hours straight no problem!”

Despite being active and independent, my mother considers herself fortunate that my younger sister is around to help out whenever the need arises (ie. rides to the doctor, impromptu shopping requests, etc.). In fact, she makes a point of remarking how lucky she is to have children to take care of her in her old age. Yep, mighty lucky. She doesn’t know what she would do without her kids to take care of her. Somewhat not coincidentally, I don’t have any children of my own. Who, exactly, will take care of me in my old age?

I know, I know. I brought this up around this same time last year but, having looked into the prospect of training my dogs to act as caregivers, I’m afraid I’m going to have to bring this subject up again. I believe that last year I also pointed out the thrills and genera satisfaction any true Stargate fan would derive from the opportunity to cook for, dress, and bathe an actual writer-producer of the show they so love. The way I see it, it’s a win-win scenario. Unlike last year, however, I’ve decided to start the hiring process well in advance. So, what I’ll be looking for is:

A great cook who enjoys keeping a clean house and spending quality time with several dogs (walking them, feed them, and, occasionally expressing their anal glands). The individual should also be mobile, own their own car, and be able to pick out fresh pastries and top quality chocolates. A flair for gardening, home repairs, and Swedish massage is also a must. Sponge-bathing experience is not required but appreciated. Finally, the candidate should be female and between the ages of 21-35 during the period of my decrepitude which, conservatively, should be in about thirty years.

Well, in advance of tonight’s festivities, I’d like to wish everyone a Happy New Year! And to fans in China, Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zeland – Wait up for the rest of us!!!

Today’s entry is dedicated to birthday boys Jay Lewis and author, fellow blogger, and passing acquaintance of Baron Destructo Joe Abercrombie (send him birthday wishes, congratulate him on the completion of his next book, and read his rundown of the editing process here:

79 thoughts on “December 31, 2008: Preparing for my Future

  1. “A great cook who enjoys keeping a clean house and spending quality time with several dogs (walking them, feed them, and, occasionally expressing their anal glands). The individual should also be mobile, own their own car, and be able to pick out fresh pastries and top quality chocolates. A flair for gardening, home repairs, and Swedish massage is also a must. Sponge-bathing experience is not required but appreciated. Finally, the candidate should be female and between the ages of 21-35 during the period of my decrepitude which, conservatively, should be in about thirty years.”

    Are you looking for an assistant, or a concubine? 😕

    Ya know, Joe…I’d put my app in right now if it wasn’t for the fact that you’re just not pale enough. Sorry. 😉

    Hmmmm…I wonder if Todd is hiring…


  2. Hey Joe,

    Happy New-Year to you and your family

    Be careful with fireworks tonight, You never know if you’re going to need your fingers, toes or even eyes next year. (Although a pirate eye-patch might look cool)

    See you next year,

  3. Happy New Year!!!!!

    Hmmmmm, like last year I will bow out of applying to look after you in your decrepitude for the following reasons:

    a) I’ve already been born
    b) I’m older than you, so I couldn’t meet the age requirement
    c) I’m a cat person as indicated by my user name
    d) What about Fondy? After all, women tend to outlive men (Methinks maybe she should be advertising for some young buck to look after her. Sven or Carlos, maybe)

  4. Dear Joe,

    I’m very sorry to inform you that I cannot meet the requirements on the stipulations of your eventual decrepit care.

    I know you were looking forward to long, interesting conversations about the purpose of digital camera zoom lenses protruding unneedingly, hypoallergenic Himalayan cats, and the joys of microwave tv dinners, but my shortcomings of age and not owning a time machine have limited me where, otherwise, I’m sure I would have met your criteria.

    You were looking for a cook but I would have been sure to wow you with my pre-prepared frozen meal techniques, already celebrated and infamous even today. Think of how beautiful your body would have looked in your casket after shoving all those preservatives down your throat!

    I love small dogs. If they’re anything like cats, we shouldn’t have had a problem. I’m a sucker for animals. I don’t necessarily like them, but they do like to lick me. Get it? Sucker? You would have loved my witty conversation!

    I hate driving long distances, but a bicycle or go-cart should have been efficient. If you weren’t stationed close enough to a local grocery store, moving your frail body in a close hotel would have been no problem. We would have kept the dogs in the closet. Cats enjoy warm closed in areas.

    I would have had a great flair for gardening, too! Cacti on every shelf! Wal*Mart always has great sales on them. We could have had a few “Chia” pets, if you would have liked, as well!

    And during Valentine’s day the retail stores have a very good array of chocolates. I dunno, have you heard of “Hershey?” They’re splendid.

    I love Swedish meatballs too! We would have been so much alike.

    And don’t you know I have bathing experience. I do it every day! Holding up your body to a gardening hose every day would have been such a memorable experience for the both of us, I’m sure.

    Oh, if only I had a time machine…think of all the fun we would have had! I’m just kicking myself for the blasphemy of being born 25 years too late. I’m sure I’ll be a pretty randy 55 year old if you ever wish to reconsider your age limitations…

    Give it a thought or two. Give me a ping if you get the chance.


    We’ll talk business.


  5. Joe,

    Sounds like a very fulfilling job. Unfortunately for me, I can’t satisfy the age requirement. By that, I mean I’m old as dirt and will be needing assistance myself very shortly.

    I have some bad news to report. Our dear puppy did have to have her leg amputated. She and the doctors fought hard but in the end, they weren’t able to save it.

    She’s home now and getting around just fine on three legs. She doesn’t seem the least bit hampered and when it’s time to eat, her ears perk up with the same enthusiasm as ever. She’s a pretty remarkable dog and we love her even more as we watch her carry on.

    Thanks to everyone for their good wishes. It really meant a lot.



  6. Well now Mr. M.,

    Do you think you are too old for Kids? I say Nay! You and Fondy are still young enough for kids…so get cracking!

    It’s a new year, why not make a baby??? Just think, your kid could not only take care of you, but carry on your blog tradition… But then again, maybe not!

    Wishing you and all the members of the Stargate Atlantis Team a Happy New Year!

    Patricia Lee

  7. We spent part of Christmas evening haranguing a younger cousin, each time he came in from the freezing cold after his cigarette break, about how after he has his stroke from smoking, we are NOT going to take care of him, and in fact, we will all gather around his sickbed and drink, and not SHARE with him. He said we were all just old and cranky.

    Happy New Year!

  8. Just to put your mind at ease, I’ve approached one of my workmates, who has an adorable 1 year old daughter. I’ve expressed my interest in babysitting, watching, and otherwise looking after the little tyke. He has no idea, of course, of my ulterior motives. But I figure I can still instill the needed skill sets into her, as well as hook her onto sci fi, and all without the need for me to maintain the expense of actually raising her. I’ll make sure her resume is ready when you will need it. And just to be fair, I am taking the same approach with another worker with a son who is also less than a year old. After all, Fondy is entitled to the same, if not superior level of care many decades hence.
    To you, and all the others, I wish a very happy New Years. Here’s to keeping the important resolutions, and merrily breaking the ones that really don’t matter.

  9. Happy New Year to you and yours!
    Will the dogs stay up to watch the ball drop>
    Good luck with the interviews.

  10. Sorry Joe! I couldn’t wait up 😀

    I live in Tasmania (yes we do actually exist!) so we got to New Year about 11 hours and 26 minutes ago. I have seen the new year in, and I have had about 6 hours sleep 😛

    I hope you and Fondy and your family (and yeah, why not, the dogs too) have a great 2009.


  11. Happy New Year!

    I agree with Cat4444’s statement. Fondy is the one who needs to be looking for someone to take care of her. Or are you just trying to make Fondy’s life easier for her in your old age?

  12. Happy New Year from Cornwall! Apparently I slept through it but as no-one was looking it doesn’t count. Me and my tissues, Olbas oil and Vick’s Vaporub are going to bed.
    I must admit to a certain comfort from knowing my kids will continue after me. A kind of vanity I guess but it means it hasn’t all been pointless when, as I previously pointed out, I peaked in primary school.

  13. Happy new year everyone!!!

    My daily cliché for your illumination:
    It will all be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

  14. Love to help you out, Joe, but I’m an only child — I’ll already have to care for a parent by myself, whichever one is leftover. Although … right now they’re both sick and refusing to go to the doctor, so if my situation changes and I get freed up, I might end up applying after all — so long as the benefits include being a major heir in your will. 😉

    Me, I’m hoping that cloning and consciousness-transplantation will be feasible by the time I’m old enough to worry, since I won’t be having any kids either. Mind, I don’t mean to clone *my* body. I’d upgrade! *G*

    I’ve discovered something intriguing about the snow on your blog: the direction of the snowfall is determined by the placement of the mouse on the page! Keep it on the left, and it will fall to the right, & vice versa — put it in the centre, and it falls straight down. Also, it falls faster when the mouse is on the left or right than in the centre.

    Clearly, I have spent too much time looking at the adorable pic of Max at the top, where the snow is easiest to see. (It’s not as creepy as it sounds — I ended up having to answer the phone when I was just about to read the blog. What a happy accident! :))

    Anyway, Omedetou! Hope the new year is a prosperous and creative one for you & the Stargate crew, old and new — and your readers too! 🙂

  15. Weird… I think I saw a similar “ad” from Fondy in GQ…

    BTW, my mom [who’ll be turning 74 this year] is the same way… sorta. She doesn’t [can’t] do half of what yours does anymore because of her health – which is *why* she complains of it! Especially when she sees her 85 year old friend living on her own and cleaning things within a nanite of its life!

    You’ve got it good there, Joe, living sooooo far away from Mom, *not* having to deal with the “everyday” elderly parent maintenance… [Should a sibling whack you upside the back of the head for no apparent reason, the aforementioned is ‘why’!] I think I need the T-shirt that says: Parent Herder

    Hope you’ve been shoveling a few driveways, washing dishes, changing lightbulbs, correcting the time of the VCR, picking up pooch-poop…

  16. Dear Baron Destructo

    Thank you for the presents last week, the ipod is awesome. I do have one more late Christmas request though. Please take my sisters in law far, far away. All 3 of them. The local one can come back when the others are far away again because her claws will retract in time. The worst one is very good at cleaning (read anal and obsessive) so she might make a good minion at the moonbase.

    Think about it.


  17. Sorry, Joe.. guess that’s one job i’m happy to let someone else take on. I’m quite content to chill on the beach with you and watch the sun set over the horizon; drag you up a few mountains in your wheelchair when you’re old, decrepid and drooling all over your bib; and even tie you to the underside of a kayack when you’re no longer able to paddle for yourself or stay afloat..

    But that’s about it.. And the spot on my longboard’s already been taken up by one territorial Labby. He doesn’t like to share 😛

    That said.. I will wish you a Happy New Year. All the best to you, Fondy, the doggies and the rest of the family. Also to all Bloggers here and the extended souls of the SG Franchise. 2008 was a rollercoaster of a ride.. here’s to 2009 and whatever it might bring 😉

  18. Really, a concubine it is! Golly gee, I’d do it if it weren’t for the age thing, the gardening (oh please, get a gardener) and the Swedish massage. Home repairs? You need a husband.


  19. Hey Joe,


    It’s great to see you spending it with your family. The time you spend together is so valuable. Cherish it and all of the thoughts and emotions it brings to the fore.

    I’ve been spending a lot of time talking to my parents of late. Listening to their lives, their parents’ lives, what their motivations and thoughts were behind particular decisions they made along the way. It’s made me both melancholy and inspired.

    As they head towards 70 you can see the irreversible aches and pains set in, but at the same time, they haven’t lost their spark for life and have lived their lives to the fullest. When you sit with them the reality of time and it’s effects are right in front of you.

    So, realising this and accepting it, last night for New Year’s I headed off with Hubby, my Brother and a great friend to watch my Dad play in his rock band (along with 200 other people). And I’m so glad I did. It’s his passion and what keeps him kicking. He’s played with every major band of the 60’s and met some amazing people through it. As a kid I don’t think I understood how unique it was to have the stream of talented muso’s through our house. It will be one of those stories you pass on. “Hey! Did you know your Grandpa used to play drums? He used to nail his kit to the beams of the floor of his parents house when he was 16 because they couldn’t afford boards for the floors. And your great-Nanna was the youngest ever violinist in the San Francisco Philharmonic. Here’s her violin. It’s almost 100 years old.” Maybe it is enough to inspire a future generation to pickup a musical instrument.

    By the way, you didn’t list an email address in which resume’s to become your elderly aid can be submitted to. Looks like the up and coming blog readers will only be able to apply judging by the criteria. Maybe by then they’ll have a Stargate Writer’s Home.

    It was great to see your universal translator. Guaranteed to bring a smile to your face when you find old objects like that and remember your thoughts as a kid.
    Here’s one of my books from when I was 11. Please note the “Terrific” stamp in the bottom right-hand corner 😉 It had a gripping sequel as well, “The Galactic Dogs meet the Galactic Cats in Space”. It’s around here somewhere. Writing as a kid was so much fun.

    You are in a profession that sounds great from the outside. However, the criteria in which someone likes or dislikes your work is completely subjective. I can only imagine how difficult this makes your job. The genre of Sci Fi makes this even more difficult as you battle with an audience which is generally more informed than those of others. So not only do you need to create a story that piques the reader’s interest, but you need to ensure you are factually correct on certain matters otherwise you will be hauled across the coals. Even putting pen to paper with the intent on publishing shows great strength. I tip my hat to you.

    Inspiration can quite often be dependent on those around you as well. I know that something I’m excited about with selling up my company and joining a larger organisation is to not be at the top of the ideas chain. I will have a mentor. Someone to give me new ideas. It’s an exciting prospect to be re-inspired. The Stargate crew are tight and you all go back a long way. It makes for a great writing team, but sometimes some new blood thrown into the mix can give you new thoughts. That’s just a wild assumption made by an outsider there so I apologise if you are now reading this and thinking “What the hell would she know?”.

    I marked the end of 2008 yesterday by going out and buying my first season of SG1 on DVD. I’ve always relied on Sci Fi for my Stargate viewing (except for the movies) so I’m now the proud owner of Season 8 of SG1 🙂

    Hope you are having a blast.

    All the best for a great 2009 Joe and the same to all the lurkers and regulars here.


  20. I understand the situation with your mother, Joe. My own mother is in the hospital righ now. Up until a couple of weeks ago she was an active working woman. (Still working at the age of 80!) She’s currently having some ciatic nerve problems and a cracked hip. She has been completely dependent on her children and very impatient to get back on her feet again.

    I am due to become a great-aunt in May of 2009. Should the child turn out to be a girl, should I submit her application and limited resume for your consideration?

    Let’s hope that 2009 is far better than 2008!


  21. So if I understand this correctly, you would like any interested in-utero to 5 year old female Stargate fans who happen to be reading this blog to send in their applications to become your full time gourmet cook, nurse and personal shopper 25 to 30 years from now? Keep us posted on how that goes for you ;). But seriously, your mom is 74 and going strong — God bless her!

    Joe, here’s wishing you and your family and Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year!

  22. HAPPY NEW YEARS to you and your family and the fir kids.
    And to the cast and crews of SG1 and SGA.


  23. In 30 yrs i’ll be 50 0.o AHHHHH!
    Happy new year!!!!!!!!!!!! (if it is over there yet)
    I hope 2009 is filled with lots and lots of happiness for you and your family (poochies included)

  24. “What about Fondy? After all, women tend to outlive men (Methinks maybe she should be advertising for some young buck to look after her. Sven or Carlos, maybe)”

    What about Fabio? *falls off chair laughing*

  25. Hi, Joe. I’m afraid I’ve been behind on reading your blog lately, distracted as I am with my own visiting with family.

    I do wonder, though, if I could get a dedication for my dog, Kira, who died tonight. She was a nearly 10-year-old rottweiler, who was only just barely starting to show any grey and still ran around like she did when she was a year old. She was fine this morning, then when my parents came home tonight, she was unresponsive. By the time they got to the emergency vet, where I was already waiting, she was dead. She was my sweet little girl, my precious, and she brought an untold amount of joy into my life. It was incredibly sudden, as she has always been an extremely healthy dog, but at least it appears she went quickly and with little pain. All things considered, things went as well as they could have, if it was her time. But… it hurts. A lot.

    Here’s her Dogster page… which I’ll now have to take down soon:

    Sorry, I know that’s random, but I just felt like sharing, I guess.

  26. I am older and have no children but I believe a good person who keeps his heart and mind open is never alone. People want to be around that kind of person.

    My question is about Stargate Atlantis. If there are any plans for a movie could you keep in mind Larrin and Sheppard? Actually I liked all the travelers. Their a rag tag, never give up, dumpster diving crew.

  27. Happy New Years Joe and family!!
    We celebrated with family and friends at a bbq dinner at my brothers house. I made the fruit punch which although sounds quite tame it contained the following ingredients:
    1 litre of vodka, 700ml rum, 700ml gin, 750ml champagne, 180ml tequila, fruit salad and 1.5 litre lemonade. Go on Joe…make it and try it…it’s got a lotta kick in it!! Sure to cure you of what ever should ail you!!
    Cheers everyone!!!
    Hope you all have a wonderful, safe and prosperous 2009!

  28. Happy New Year!

    Since I didn’t manage to have my own kids, I’ve managed to acquire friends who are half my age. They take me shopping, have sat by while I’ve been in surgery, party with me, groom my dog, and so on. They’ll get the house and all the art and junk and stuff. Not so hard to do. I’ve been teaching them to cook, so we’re good there.

  29. Hi Joe,

    Happy New Year! May 2009 be a wonderful year for you & your family.


  30. Yes, happy new year to you and yours! From this mostly silent poster. Ah, but its the quiet ones you need to watch! Best of wishes in this new year to you!

  31. Well, my boys should be getting married and having kids of their own, in the next few years. You want I should start training any female offspring as soon as they appear?

    The benefit of this is that any female born that can assist you in your old age, will be a Canadian citizen, so no immigration to worry about.


  32. Hey Joe!


    And HAPPY BIRTHDAY Jay Lewis and Joe Abercrombie!

    And as for who will take care of you in your old age… well, I would think THAT answer would be obvious to a sci-fi writer like yourself: ROBOTS! 😀 Sure in thirty years we’ll have the scary robots like in the very badly told version of Isaac Asimov’s *I, Robot*. You know! The one with Will Smith. But I’m sure our robots will not go psychoco and kill us. (I borrowed the word from my nephew. It’s even BETTER than psycho if you ask me.)

    Besides, I think only my younger daughter, Erin would be the right age for the job. And it would probably take me the next thirty years to train her for all that stuff. Oddly she does know how to express a dog’s anal glands. Ok… not really! But she’s pretty good at keeping a house clean and spending time with dogs. So that’s two down. 😀

    Have a very Happy New Year. Here’s to hoping 2009 is way better than 2008!


    p.s. It’s my birthday tomorrow. 😀

  33. Yeah, I’d love to help you out with that but unfortunately by the time you’re old enough for a caregiver to be required Stargate will have been cancelled and you will be too old to lift your pen to write a new series. Based on this I will no longer have any love/desire/feelings of awe for you and therefore wont care if you can’t make peepee on your own. Sorry – I’m fickle that way.

    I do still love you at the moment though and wish you a very happy new year!!! (until the final episode of Atlantis airs)

    kisses xxx


  34. As my father said before my mother’s terrible illness: it’s why he got married. Can we say karma? Except the joke’s on me.

    You can always adopt. Or, fortunately, you will have amassed enough money by that point to hire anyone you please.

    Happy New Year everyone.

  35. A great cook who enjoys keeping a clean house and spending quality time with several dogs (walking them, feed them, and, occasionally expressing their anal glands). The individual should also be mobile, own their own car, and be able to pick out fresh pastries and top quality chocolates. A flair for gardening, home repairs, and Swedish massage is also a must. Sponge-bathing experience is not required but appreciated. Finally, the candidate should be female and between the ages of 21-35 during the period of my decrepitude which, conservatively, should be in about thirty years.

    Wow, you’ve just described me to a T – PMSL! Good luck with that one. Maybe we can start up a Stargate retirement village. I’m sure you can come up with a cool name.

    Cheers, chev

    p.s. Have I wished you all a Happy New Year? If not Happy 2009!

  36. Hey Joe, on your recommendation I stopped by the other Joe’s (Joe Abercrombie) blog. It’s just as entertaining and educational as your! Thanks for suggesting it.

  37. Hi, and happy New Year!

    I’m sure someone has asked this/pointed this out before, but I haven’t been able to find it. In the pilot, Teyla introduces herself as ‘Teyla Emmagen, daughter of Taggan’. She explains (I’m not sure if its later in the episode or in the first season) that she took over leading the Athosians.

    Yet her baby is named ‘Torren John’, supposedly after her father and Sheppard. Could you explain to me how this came to be? Though I will admit – ‘Taggan John’ would’ve been a terrible name.

  38. Happy New Year!!!!

    I, too, havin no children have worried about who will look after me in my old age. Fortunately I have a large family. I have 3 bros, 2 sisters, 8 nieces, 1 nephew, 2 great nephews and 2 great nieces. Whether they know it or not, one of them is taking me in. : ) : )

    All the best in 2009!!!!

  39. @ Rose – Hugs to you and your pup! Thanks for the update. So sad that she lost her leg, but at the same time, so glad you still have her. And animals can adapt so well, sometimes better than us because they don’t have all the issues to overcome that humans usually have in situations like this. They just keep on living, and enjoying every second of it.

    You may enjoy this, it’s Daryn Kagan (ex-CNN anchor) and her three-legged cat, Tripod:

    Animals are truly amazing creatures…

    Speaking of which…

    Joe…someone shared a very brief clip with me from a particular upcoming episode. It’s so nice to know Wraith are not the spineless creatures some writers have made them out to be! Although…there is a little something that appeared to be missing…which I will certainly be asking you about sometime around 9:59 pm ET on Friday…so be warned, and be ready! 😉


  40. Look no further Joe.

    I’m an excellent cook who can not only point out fresh pastries and top quality chocolates but make them. I have a dessertary business on the side and will be catering my first wedding this spring.

    I have managed my own herb/vegetable garden for 3 years now and have had a floral garden since I was 8. All my stuff is fully organic. I currently take care of 5 dogs, 3 cats, and 2 horses. Although I have to admit I do prefer little dogs to big dogs. In the spring we are going to have free range chickens and a calf.

    I can do anything from hangging a picture to rerunning electrical wire. I even can work on plumbing.

    As for the Message part my mum got the cancer and a result from the radiation treatment caused her spin to collapse. I was her main caregiver. I learned how to give massages then to help with the circulation. I’m also proficient in sponge baths and diaper changing. I have other experience as well since I was a nanny/ personal assistant for about 2 years. It was for a family of 4 (Dad was a business executive, mom worked in public relations and the 2 boys were obsessive about soccer.) The family moved back to New Zealand and they wanted to take me but I wasn’t ready to leave then. I have a letter of reference from them if you need it.

    I’ve wanted to move to Canada since I was 6 when my grandparents took me to Toronto.

    As I fit in the age category now I wont in thirty years. However I am a big sister (mentor) to about 6 kids 2 are girls. One is 5 the other 8. I’m teaching them everything I know. The 8 year old is in love with Stargate. Maybe there is hope, although she is real bright and I push them for college when they turn into teenagers so probably not.

    Let me know.

  41. Oh, and if that was too spoilery, Joe…just snip it out. I won’t be offended. It was basically just for you anyway.

    We are REALLY gonna have to talk, though! SOON. 😆


  42. HAPPY NEW YEAR Joe and company.

    I just wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed reading your blog this year……..last year. Don’t sell yourself short. You are STILL talented. I appreciate you sharing that talent through your blogging and of course Stargate. We all go through emotional ups and downs of self worth, and wonder about our contributions to life, liberty and the daily decisions of wearing blue or black ;-p That’s what makes us better, and stronger. Here’s wishing you much happiness and continued success for 2009.


  43. a 21-35 years old female in about 30 years?

    I guess about now is exactly the right time to breed and raise what you want 😛

  44. Rose: Sorry to hear about the Doby and although things will probably be challenging at times, i’m sure you’ll have years of love and fun-filled action ahead of you. Chin up and give the doggy a careful squidge from me 😉

    Shawna: So sorry to hear about your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and the family. It probably won’t come as much consolation right now, but going quickly is the best way for us to lose a close friend like that. My first Guide Dog – Parker – died suddenly a couple of years ago and I was completely unprepared for it, especially considering he was only five years old. But looking back now, I realise it was the best way that things could have happened. It’s not easy and there’ll always be those days when things just feel bleak and miserable.. But you have your memories and knowing that you at least had the chance to share them with a wonderful, faithful friend, should be enough to put even the smallest of smiles back on your face.

    *hugs* Take care and i’m thinking of you 🙂

    Trish: I’ll send out the birthday wishes tomorrow 😛

  45. I also have no kids of my own. However, my brother is almost 14 years younger than me (and one of my best friends) and I’ve already informed him that he needs to take of himself so he can be around to take of me later.

  46. Tell your mother that I am in my early 40’s and am tired after 8 hours of work, so, she is doing great. As far as your sore arm after helping, I bet you never thought you missed muscles when you weight train.

    I’d love to help you in your old age, but looks like I am a few years older than you already. Even if I weren’t, I’d have to hire people to do most of the requirements. Although, I am great at massages and driving and can provide a great social life as I love people.

    I would definately like to see you with a child. That would add a new dimension to an already funny blog. If you do end up succeeding in training the dogs to take care of you, let us know.

    Happy New Year Joseph and to all!

  47. Hey Trish (a.ka. Whoivan)….

    HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! From all of us to you… HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY, may all your dreams come true; may you have happy birthdays all you whole life though! HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY, it’s now your day too!

    Patricia Lee

  48. To Rose; I’m sorry to hear your dog had to have the leg amputated, but I’m glad that she has handled adapting to only three limbs well. here’s hoping for a continued recovery and many more years of companionship.
    to Shawna. My deepest sympathies on your loss. It’s aweful enough when you know a dog is ill and that it’s time to bring your partnership to an end. But to have it end so abruptly…well, I’m not the touchy feely type but consider yourself hugged.

  49. Happy New Year to you and your family.
    And at the risk of sounding too much like your mother, it’s never to late to have children, just ask mr. jafacakes, he was 50 when he had the first and 60 when he had the last … granted, I’m a few years younger, but inspite of his initial reservations he’s glad in his case it was better late than never 🙂

  50. I was wondering if you happened to enjoy any Bagna Cauda this year, or if you even like it at all. I love the stuff and can’t get enough of it.

  51. If I didn’t say this before Joe, Happy New Year and best wishes to your entire [dogs included] family in 2009.

  52. @ Shawna – {{{hugs}}} That picture nearly broke my heart. 🙁 There really are no words when this sort of thing happens. I am so sorry. For so many of us our pets are our children…we love them and nurture them and they give so much in return, and it just hurts so bad when they slip away from us. But take comfort in knowing you gave her a great life, and in her little puppy heart she knew, and loved you all the more for it.


  53. Happy new year! I’m afraid I’d be even worse at taking care of other people than I already am for myself, so, as much as it pains me, I’ll skip your tempting job offer. But you know, you really should consider treating the wraith better in the future. That way, you may convince one to grant you the Gift of Life and rejuvenate you to perfect youth and health. Wouldn’t it be ideal? Except for the whole Swedish massage thing, but don’t let greed get in the way. I’d gladly accept the Swedish massage by a wraith on your behalf anyway. 😀

  54. @Rose – All’s well as long as your pup’s home and happy. Have a great new year together!

  55. @ Rose: I’m sorry that she had to lose her leg, but it’s great to know that it’s not stopping her from going about her life and having fun! What a trooper.

    @ Shawna: Sudden tragedies like these are the worst. I am so sorry for your loss, and can only hope that the healing process from here on out is an easy one for you.

  56. Hi Joe,

    I normally only read your blog(I love it!) but now I wanted to ask a question to you and I hope you have the answer on it.
    Some people and I love the director Martin Wood and we were wondering if you knew when his birthday is? Do you know this? Or can you tell us in which month his birthday is or so(approximately? We were just curious about this and can’t find it anywhere…hopefully you can provide us with the answer.

    Happy New Year as well!

    Oh and I just have to add that I love your dogs, they are very cute!!!


  57. Slight problem with your hiring process, Joe. If you want ’em 21-35 in about thirty years, they’re either toddlers right now and therefore not capable of applying, or not even born yet.

  58. Joe,

    Your mom sounds awesome. I, too, know what it’s like to be totally outclassed by a small, elderly woman.

    Luckily, at that age, they tend to take naps, so we can either catch up or take a nap of our own and ::whispers:: no one has to know.

    Happy New Year!

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