Friday, August 5, 2011

If you like your cats, make sure they don't shelter in the car engine in the winter...

We used to attract stray cats...but no more... alas, whatever kind of beacon our house gave out that said, hey there, we have dogs, but why dont any kind of raggedy cats that feel like making their way down, setting up home and expecting us to feed them, feel free! We're an animal rescue centre!!! seems to have disappeared. And by alas, I mean thank fuck..

Don't get me wrong. I like cats. In fact when I grow old, I'm going to be a cat woman. And I don't mean the cartoon sense of the term. I mean, I'm going to be a mad bag of a woman who sits on her porch in her rocking chair surrounded by her cats which are half dead and mouldy looking, shouting at the children and hitting people with her walking stick. When I die, surrounded by my cats, they're going to eat me, coz all cats want is to be fed and petted and once that dries up, bang, they don't care anymore. No loyalties, cats. And if they see food, they're gonna eat it, and when I'm dead that's what I'll be to them- just another meal. I'm okay with that. Going back to nature and all that.

When I was younger I loved cats as well. Had a pet one. Called it Treasure. (yeh, even as a kid I was fascinated by pirates) It died. Kind of like all of our cats. Not that they were all called treasure. Just that they all died. Or ran away... But that was cool. I lived on a farm, we had cattle, calves died all the time. And dogs, the dogs died too after an average of 3 years. And rats. The dogs killed the rats, sometimes rat poison did it either, but they ended up in the yard dead either way, so we saw an awful lot of dead animals and pets as kids. But I'm getting off topic. I think the reason that we no longer attract stray cats was one incident about 4 years ago......

My younger sister had a cat called Mittens. She loved Mittens, with its little white feet and its cute little face. But one cold winters weekend, she couldn't find Mittens, and by Monday morning, when it was time to go to school, she still couldn't find Mittens. However, they had to go to school, so herself and the younger brother got in the car, and Da started the engine and started to reverse out the drive and then the engine sputtered and died, out of nowhere. And he tried to turn it on a few times and it still wouldn't turn on, so eventually, he opened the bonnet....and after a minute or two, he called to my sister....

> I found Mittens!!

And my sister was delighted for a brief minute until my father started pointing and continued,

> There he is...and there...and there's another bit of him..and another bit over there...

The cat had sheltered in the engine where it was nice and warm. Unfortunately, the engine turning on and chopping him to bits was not something he had bargained on. The sister did not feel like looking. 

I think there must have been something in the air since then. A sense of foreboding or something...something that told cats, stay away, this is not a safe place for you to be. There are no cats left at the farm. Don't get me wrong. I still like cats. I still might be an old cat woman in the future, but in the meantime it saves a lot on cat food..

Small boys don't believe in animal rights. Throw basketballs at their faces.

Small boys are easily entertained. Small boys like to poke shit with sticks. If the shit moves, then it's an even better game. And if the shit happens to be a living animal, then it's the best toy in the world. Small boys don't care whether the animal wants to play with them or not. They definitely do not care whether the animal is enjoying the game or not. They just see something interesting and want to play. Playing with cats really isn't a big step up from shit to a small boy. And my older brother, as a small boy, decided he wanted to play with the cat one day. 


So he picks Tiger, the cat, up....by the tail. Obviously she doesn't really like it, and tries to get away, jumping back onto the ground. But of course, he finds this fun! Because he was a little boy and cats were strange animals to him. Any little animal wriggling around and trying to scratch him was a great toy to play with. And so he ignores the scratching claws and the angry noises the cat was making. 
Once the cat was back on the ground, he proceeded to keep letting the cat run on and then pulling it back by the tail...sort of like how a cat would play with a mouse, except he wasn't eventually going to eat the cat...I hope...in retrospect, that may have been his ultimate intention....
He ignored the fact that the cat doesn't like it. He also ignored the lesson that my sister was trying to give him about treating cats nicely and how it wasn't nice to hurt them because cats had feelings too, as well as the advice she tried to give him on how to hold them properly. Small boys don't like lessons and they don't like advice. Especially when that advice interferes directly with whatever game it is they're trying to play. 

So the brother kept up his game, teasing the cat with freedom and then taking it away until, Eventually, the cat managed to get under a trailer, hopefully (for it) to safety. 


Unfortunately, that wasn't happening. One minute all I could see was that he was reaching under the trailer for the cat, the next minute the sister was screaming
> stop!! stop it!! you're hurting it!! let go!!


while my brother gleefully pulled the cat out from under the trailer by the tail and proceeded to drag it around and around the shed, also by the tail. My sister kept trying to get him away from the cat which just made the game more exciting and the more she screamed the better the game became.


Eventually the cat got bored and scratched him and he got bored and gave up the game.


Don't feel too outraged at the boy. Small boys don't believe that animals have rights or feelings. They don't see that animals aren't their toys. In my brothers case apparently he didn't even see that his siblings had rights or feelings. He treated us all like his toys. Once he bribed me with cheese-strings to stay outside and play in the dark, when I wanted to go in coz it was cold.. Dammit, he knew I loved the orange and white cheese-strings. So he kept one in his pocket one evening and gave me pieces of it every so often for as long as I stayed outside.. what a bollix... Small boys are crafty. And that's why I didn't feel bad when a smaller me threw a basketball at his already broken nose (from his football training earlier that day) when I got angry at him and made his nose worse.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

CastlePalooza: Hullabalooza!!!!!

For those of you who don't know...which to be fair I'm going to assume is just about all of you, CastlePalooza is an annual small indie music festival in Charleville Castle, Tullamore...Offaly...I can't make it any clearer than that...I can't even give directions to my own house..honestly, Google Maps would be a better friend to you here than I would...

This year, my good friend A, who happens to be from Tullamore convinced me to come along as well and seeing as how it was only 59euro for a 3-Day Early Bird ticket (yeh I know it sounds like I'm just plugging the shite out of this, but seriously, it's a deadly deal for what you get out of it- i.e. a fucking awesome time!!!) I of course agreed, fully up for going..but also kinda knowing that since it IS me, the chances were I was never gonna get round to actually booking my ticket.... unfortunately (or fortunately as the case turned out to be..) my good friend A knows me better than to take my word for it that I'm going to do anything on my own, so instead, she waited until I was totally drunk off my mind on Mango Vodka one night (BAD IDEA coz it turns out I'm mildly allergic to mangoes and I drank more than a mild amount of the vodka- sick as a dog the next day..yuck) but anyway, once she had achieved her fiendish aims of getting me polluted, she asked me very casually, while on the internet, what my bank card details and email address was and I being a total and utter fool, as I always am when drinking gave her every single detail she needed. 5 mins later, BINGO she announces, you're going to CastlePalooza! And we all cheered. And then I promptly blocked it out of my mind overnight. The next day while we discussed our previous nights activities, amidst the 'do you remember doing this?' and the 'remember doing that?' she asks, 
>do you remember giving me all your bank details so I could book your C.P. ticket?

I did not. I also did not eat properly that week because I had spent the majority of my money for the week on that ticket.... suffering for our follies...

Anywho, months later and some more of my friends were also going, but as it turned out A couldn't make it... strange life....instead, I shifted one of her friends on the last night there. He's a nice boy. Why not... I felt it made up for not getting to see her there after all that...in a small way at least.

Arrived with no credit so no way to contact the friends, including the one i was sharing a tent with so instead i wandered lonely as a cretin til i found them...or they found me really.. and the games began!! Not wanting to be a boring swine so:

Friday night:
Arrived, set up camp, snuck in a shnaaakey hip flask stuck down me top in the auld bra, coz I'm a classy girl like that... it was a metal hip flask and i forgot to blow in it to warm it before it went in....cooooold boobies.. but anyway, i drank that and one of the cheapest offy drinks we could get in there....Stoya Beer...it tastes like piss... i mean seriously, dont ever ever drink it. Rave tent that night. Frickin AWESOME!

Saturday
Hungover as an upside-down clothesline.. was not feeling the May West, so instead I went back to bed for most of the day and then later got up, avoided the remnants of Stoya coz even the smell of it was making me gag and we went for a tour of the castle and played BINGOOOOOOO..but I didn't win and that made me a bit peeved coz I hate to lose..not that I'm a child or immature or anything..no scratch the last one, but I just love winning.
The fine beer of the night was Herberflergunsbergbalag...it wasn't but I never could remember the name of the beer, even when the can was right in front of me..altho I'm not sure if that's coz I was too drunk to see it, or too drunk to remember what it was called. Either way, it was a step up from Stoya and it did not taste like piss. I got my hair pulled and ruffled coz it's curly and people like to do that for some reason... Bands on the stage, disco in the tent as well as some impromptu volleyball/football/throw-around with a burst beach ball we found.

Sunday
Had to go home in the afternoon for a session, coz this summer meself and the brother and a few others play a session in one of the local pubs every Sunday evening for free pints. YUM, pre-drinking done, methinks.. but anyway, this week they were celebrating 23 years open so it'd be rude to miss it..altho I did only get one pint in me before I left and went back to the festival for a really really weird night..

First off I brought facepaints back with me so it was bound to be a random night and we played drinking games so that was all good craic! Then for the disco tent, bands, disco tent. Shifted my friends friend, yeehaw, all havin the craic BUT THEN i got lost..i dont know how..dunno how i got separated from all the friends but i did and ended up in the disco tent on my own where a young lad decided to dance with me and i was like oh no dont shift me, coz y'know, thats usually why young lads wanna dance in the disco tent, but apparently i was getting a little vain! A little toooo big for my boots, ya know, coz he didnt. The little bollix.
He had a girlfriend, he told me that when i was hesitant to dance with him. And then i spent aaages with him, and he was one of the volunteers so i got to go back to the crew area and get some free beer and meet some more people whose names i hadnt a hope in hell of remembering coz i was fucked as befucked. Wandered again with him and we met some more people, talked some more shite. And then I got lost again haha.

...And realised that somewhere along my merry adventure I had lost my bag.

A quite sobering thought. Considering that not only had it got my lovely filched rain poncho (a friend had a spare one...NOT ANY MORE!!!) but it also had my wallet and my passport- seeing as how, since the robbery that's my only form of I.D. Ooopsy daisy...mommy and daddy weren't going to be impressed... I know!!!


Drunk me can't find my phone..in fact, I don't think she even looked...so naturally assumes said phone is in the bag along with everything else. This is not going to be good...or easy to explain... so Drunk me decides to ring my phone and that'll lead me to the phone and the bag.
I rang the phone for 5 whole minutes before I realised that I was ringing the phone...with my phone... Fail.


Drunk me thinks. I'll retrace my footsteps and find it no problemo. However, half way along retracing my footsteps I realised I had actually got absolutely no idea where the fuck i had been before that or which direction we'd come from or if i could even recognise the areas if i saw them! But i was determined!!! So an hour later when I retreated to my tent (which i found no bother for some strange reason) it was a shameful retreat.....and a 7am one at that...

Up at 2pm coz we were packin up. Lost and Found tent had already been packed up and was gone. Packed bag. Went to the portaloo and puked my guts up....seexxyyyy i know ;) went back to the friends, got on the shuttlebus, got off the shuttlebus before it even left so I could get sick again in the grass right in front of the wall round the castle and the festival.. sexxyyyy and classy, once again, i know ;) but the bouncers were sound and one brought me over a bottle of water, and the bus man was sound and let one of the friends off to stay with me and was really sympathetic. Either the bus man or the bouncer radioed  the next bus coming and told them i was to be let on coz all my friends were gone on ahead and i had gotten out to puke, so that was sound coz he let us on straight away even though the bus was pretty full by the time it got to us and warned us a dozen times not to puke on the bus coz he'd no problem stopping so i could get out and puke but he also had no problem handing me an 80euro fine if i did it on his bus. He was funny tho and sound so it was all in good humour.. but deadly serious ha.

Directed my friend who was driving to my house and none of them could believe people actually lived down roads as narrow as mine. Grass growing up the middle of the road and all...and every time we turned off onto another road that was smaller than the last they all went, what the fuck? are you sure you know where we are? are you sure we're not lost?? So for a while i told them we were just to get them all tense and worried, til they almost turned around and i had to tell them the truth.

Slept the rest of Sunday. Felt sick Monday. Felt sick Tuesday. Today is Wednesday. Feel kinda dodgy still... but fuck it, CastlePalooza fucking rules!! Totally worth a 3-day hangover...and to top it all off....


I have now just popped my festival cherry- with my first time ever going to a music festival. Viva la looza.... that sounds wrong...i mean it as in castlepalooza..not like..a loser... THE END!!!!