Yesterday morning when I was walking to work, I saw a cat climbing on a window screen. The window was about 5 feet off the ground, so the cat is obviously a good jumper. I stopped and said, "Kitty, what are you doing??" The cat, firmly attached to the screen, turned his head to look at me and said, "mraaow!" I then asked him if he was stuck but he started clawing the screen, so he obviously wasn't; he was just trying to attract some attention from his people. I'm glad I got to see him, because it made me think of the infamous next door Toby from a couple years ago, climber of our bathroom screen. Specifically it made me think about that time he pulled the screen off the window and he and the screen fell 5 feet down into the compost pile. Good times.
This Weekend, by Tattoobelly
This weekend Twyla, Sonny, and the girls came over. They arrived Saturday night and had decided to stay at a hotel (partly because Lou got wind of the idea and virtually insisted), so we went over for about an hour that night, mainly so Sharky could swim with them in the hotel pool. Francisco and I abstained but it was really fun anyway, just watching; the girls had a big old time. After the swimming, we went home so they could start the bedtime process, but they came over in the morning to go to the Goodwill with us (no good cameras this weekend, but I got two cute sweaters and a weirdo wire paper holder to put in Rich's office on the sly--I plan to fill his office with junk, little by little--plus an oldish photography textbook from which I think I can learn some stuff), and then Francisco made lunch and we watched el superclasico, the Boca Juniors/River Plate game (Argentinian teams). Stupid River Plate won, but it was still a good time. For much of the game, Twyla and Lou were outside with Sharky, helping him find insects for a school project (Frances was napping), and Julian showed up and joined in the search. Julian requires a whole new paragraph.
The kid was all over the place. His favorite spot in the neighborhood (so it would seem) is the empty lot next door, with its foundation pits and various dirt and gravel piles. He LOVES to climb the dirt and gravel piles. He also loves to haul Tonka truckloads of gravel into our yard and dump them on the lawn--he and Francisco have differing opinions of how much fun this is. He and Lou played a bit, but Julian is a bit too rough & tumble for her, and a couple of times Lou got hurt (scrape on knee, twisted ankle). The twisted ankle happened when Julian accidentally ran straight into Lou (in pursuit of a soccer ball), but he got the worst of that incident. He hit the ground HARD, got up, yelled in rage, and took off running. Sharky says Julian never cries when he gets hurt; he just flees. Poor kid. Twyla tended to the Lou wound and I went after Julian. He wasn't damaged, but he had sort of a scrape on his arm, and I imagine he ended up with many bruises as well. We found out this weekend that Julian uses some very foul language for a 5 year old: This requires another whole new paragraph.
Little Julian is very fond of telling people to fuck off. He told Lou to fuck off several times (the first few times Twyla wasn't sure she was hearing him correctly, but she was), and he has started telling Francisco to fuck off on a regular basis. Mainly Francisco hears it when he is tired of Julian not listening to him after he says things like, "Julian, please don't dump that gravel on the lawn" and "Julian, please stop looking and yelling through the mail slot", because when he gets tired of Julian not listening, he makes Julian go home, and Julian doesn't like that. When he has to go home, he'll run down the block yelling at Francisco to fuck off the whole way. I think, actually, we have a chance of changing Julian's behavior if we keep sending him home when he doesn't listen, because he always comes back penitent, and yesterday he even specifically told Francisco he wouldn't look and yell through the mail slot anymore (we'll see how that works out). I have to say, even despite Julian's total wildness, I really adore the kid. It's obvious he gets almost no attention at home, and no guidance, and that makes me want to take him under my wing. Oh, and Friday night he showed up after dark, talking rapidly in Spanish about his Papi being angry, and we didn't know at the time exactly what was going on, but seemed scared and wanted Francisco to go home with him, so Francisco walked him home, and now we're pretty sure his dad was fighting with his mom. It hurts my heart that Julian's sometimes scared to be home, and it hurts a little too that it would be our door he would knock on at a time like that. It's poignant, like.
So far this is a pretty good week at work. Tomorrow I'm having lunch with my boy coworker, Rich, and Friday I'm having lunch with a different coworker. I like the Friday lunch coworker, but I'd lay odds (7 to 3--any takers?) that tomorrow's lunch will be way more fun.
In conclusion, a mysterious ball of hair Twyla found in the alley behind our house:
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