changeling times

trials and tribulations of eclectic chicken

eclectic chickens brief guide to ‘getting a dog’* May 15, 2012

Filed under: thinks — eclectic chicken @ 4:43 pm
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1.When? The best time to get a dog is when you have the time to look after it. If you are out at work all day you could argue you have time in the early morning and evenings but most dogs would argue thats a bit shit and they’d like to see you at other times too.

Chances are you’ve left getting a dog until you become a family unit… but as dogs and small children are very similar in many ways it seems silly to double up. Unless you really like clearing up two kinds of shit… otherwise; pushing a pram round and round the block waiting for a child to go to sleep will keep you fit until the child is old enough to get out of the pram at which case you’ll get even fitter chasing the child.

It’s time enough to get a dog when your child asks for one (usually once they start seriously mixing with other kids at school). If you get a dog before this chances are they will want another dog (or something more exotic that no-one else has got)… leave it until your child has been consistantly showing interest for about a year and then get one and score maximum parent points.

And now your child is at school you can keep fit by walking the dog. (unless you are going back to work fulltime at which point you probably don’t have enough time to look after your childrens needs let alone a dog as well).

2. Size. This is easy. Look at your hands… if they are small get a small dog… if they are very big get a big dog. NEVER EVER get a dog whose poos are too big for your hands to pick up. I’ve noticed since being a dog owner that its mostly the owners of big dogs whose owners don’t pick up after them…

3. What breed? Unless you are going to show the dog… or need it for a specific purpose… get a mongrel. Unless of course you want to make a fashion statement at which point you can get whatever sort of dog is fashionable in your world… popular breeds at the moment seem to be a Chihuahua amongst those with more money than sense (a dog comparable ounce for ounce with buying saffron). Or amongst those who have more money (gained mostly from drug selling) than sense there’s the Staffordshire Bull Terrier…. great little dogs with kids… vastly maligned… vastly over represented in rescue homes but they do make people thing you deal drugs.

Whatever you do avoid the fashion for combining any two breeds of dog, giving it a silly combination name and charging £400 quid plus. The cockerpoo, labradoodle craze is basically out of hand. I could tell people my dog is a Yorkshire Parson but I didn’t pay enough for him and he’s no experience of judging jams and chutneys at country shows.

Go to a rescue centre… choose a dog that you like and take it home.

*I’d like to point out, for the literalist computer nerds out there (and the humourless) that this is slightly tongue in cheek and that other pets ARE available.

 

What do you buy a trans woman on Father’s Day? June 19, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — eclectic chicken @ 5:35 pm
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Jane had an article in the Grauniad’s CiF section today.

From the perspective of Father’s Day itself its a bit of a none issue I reckon… other than its actually stalled Jane briefly into actually thinking about where the kids are in their transitional process. I think she had preconceived ideas of how things might be..and has had to perhaps rethink a little.

Basically the boy said she shouldn’t get anything ‘cos she’s a girl. Fair point, logically made. I personally see no issue with him still using the ‘name’ Dad for her yet no longer thinking her man enough to get a Fathers day card and/or gift.

Jane’s daughter who has a fairly hit and miss attitude about getting anything for anyone came up with a ‘You are one in a Million’ Fathers day card… the stats were slightly out (isn’t it 1 in a 1000 people are trans?)… but anyway…she remembered… though remembering THIS year as opposed to any other year may be her making more of a point about perceived gender than about appreciation of parenthood.

I think this latter position is where Jane thought her kids might be… that she’d get all the fun of transitioning and get to keep the status of Dad.

The main whinge on the CiF board is about janes self absorbtion…. whereas a lot of people could actually see through the style and understand the issue… or at least see what it was they were being asked to think about.

One poster said she should be grateful and should have mentioned the acceptance her children give her. And I can see both sides of this…. why should one praise acceptance unless you see there is an issue to overcome? Trans isnt an ‘issue’ (what used in pre-pc days to be called a ‘problem’) its a fact of life.

Shit happens…. deaths, illness, accidents, divorce…. kids deal with it. Those who deal well with it often do so becuase they have good role models and decent support.

But on the other hand…acceptance doesn’t come easy.. trans is an ‘issue’ until you’ve got your head round it…then it suddenly becomes a none issue. Its still a rare enough thing to throw life into chaos and make those close to the person transitioning not just rethink their relationship with the transitioner but pretty much their relationship with the world and its dog.

Thats where I come in.

If I didn’t accept Jane…if I had walked away… my son would still have a trans-dad. But he’d have a trans-dad who the other main person in his life had rejected and not been able to cope with.

As it is. Janes gender isn’t an issue for me now…. its a process we are going through as a family to make one of our family members happier. Thats got to be a win win situation. The way the world reacts to jane…CAN still be a problem. But thats not her problem. Or mine. That’s other peoples and I think on some level we enjoy spreading the understanding around.

Its giving our children a chance that not all families get to actually learn real-time about difference and acceptance.

We’ve all had to think probably more about gender than most people ever bother with.

My son thinks deeply at times and has the wiseness of coming fairly fresh to the world and if he says Janes a girl and doesn’t get a Fathers day card. I’m happy running with that.

But I’m sure as hell not going halvsies on anything come Mother’s day becuase getting to the point where trans is a non-issue has been one heck of a roller-coaster ride and I think I deserve a fucking medal 🙂

 

 
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