Friday, October 27, 2006

My boyfriend was in the newspaper!! Look, here he is holding up a pumpkin that he just carved underwater! He's so cute!


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Animal Law Heartaches

Ok, so the title might be a bit melodramatic. That's just my style.

I'm taking a course called "Animal Law" this semester. This is a class that examines the different ways animals and the law meet, what case history tells us and what trends we're seeing. It is not an animal rights class. It is a class about human's rights to own, care for, love and yes, kill, animals. It is a class about who may recover and for how much when an animal is treated unjustly, and what unjust treatment entails. It's not always a pleasant case. One of the most stomach-churning cases involved pet cats and a common, cube-shaped kitchen appliance, and a vindictive boyfriend. No more need be said.

Surprisingly, I didn't have a hard time with that case, nor the other animal cruelty cases. I didn't have a hard time reading about how almost 200 innocent pit bulls were killed in Denver when the pit bull ban went back into effect. Even reading about starving livestock was tolerable. Being in animal rescue, I've heard of it all before. I've already cried about it and tried my tears. I already know that humanity is capable of such things.

It surprised me all the more when I had trouble with our last assignment. The section we're dealing with now is animals involved in trots. In one case, a dog owner kenneled her dog, returned two weeks later to learn they had lost her dog. They blew her off, ridiculed her, dodged her questions and were overall very unprofessional in their handling of the situation. Here's the part that made my heart sink into my stomach:

The court rules, "No reasonably prudent person would have realized that the kennel's conduct in failing to take steps to search thoroughly for the plaintiff's dog; failing to show caring and compassion for the plaintiff's loss and treating her callously; treating the plaintiff rudely with anger; and not contacting the plaintiff until 8 days after the loss of the dog, would have involved an unreasonable risk of causing emotional distress and that that distress, if it were caused, might result in illness or bodily injury."

Rees v. Flaherty, 2003 Conn. Super. LEXIS 289 (Feb. 6, 2003). If you're like me, you don't need me to explain why I find this so shocking and disheartening. If you can't see it by reading it, you may not understand even if I were to explain.

It's one thing to get funny looks when I talk about my hedgehogs. It's understandable that many people do not know what animal law is or why it's important. I also understand that the law offers scarce protection for animal companions when something bad happens to them, since most of the law views animals as mere property, worth only what they could fetch on the open market. But to hear from the judiciary that emotional distress suffered at the loss of a loved friend is unreasonable... that just stings in an unexpectedly painful way.


Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Grant Hendrickson Rocks!

Ok, guys, here's the story. Once I was a voice major in undergrad at UW Madison. There came a new voice student named Grant Hendrickson, who was hilarious and nice and in the marching band and lived in my dorm. He started out really nervous, but by the end of his time in school he was singing in the operas like a pro. Then I graduated and lost track of him.

Until today.

Turns out he has his own spiffy website, which reports he's living out in LA trying to work his way into the music scene. The website also has links to his music. It's so awesome. You really need to check it out.

Not only is this guy living the dream, but he is such a thoroughly good person. If anyone deserves good things in life, it's this guy. I don't know about you, but I'm going to go download his music on iTunes so I can jam to it all the time. :)

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

I've changed my website to include more pink in commeration of Breast Cancer Awareness. Please do what you can to help find better treatments and cures for this disease. If you're one of the few who don't know someone who has been affected, you probably will sooner than you'd like.

If you go to they list many ways you can help. One of my favorites is through the Breast Cancer Site, where you can click every day for free to help provide mammograms to women who are in need. I also click on all the other sites there as well.

If you're a woman, check yourself every month, and get mammograms regularly. If you're not a woman, make sure the important women in your life check themselves every month and get mammograms regularly. Breast cancer that is caught early has a five year survival rate of 97%.

You know you're going to have a rough day when, instead of bringing the gladware of spaghetti and meatballs, you bring the gladware of canned pumpkin.