Notes from New Sodom

... rantings, ravings and ramblings of strange fiction writer, THE.... Sodomite Hal Duncan!!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

The Proper WFC Post(s) 2: Down To Earth With A Bump

OK, it's two weeks since the Con and I still haven't properly blogged about it. WTF? Well, I've been a bit remiss on account of I got back in my house in Glasgow's ph-so-Bohemian West End about 8:30 am on the Wednesday after WFC, went straight to me bed and woke up I know not how many hours/minutes/seconds later to a phone call from my Mum. While I was away, ye see, my parents had been looking after my dog, Kore (you know -- Greek for "maiden" -- other name for Persephone, beloved of Hades -- yeah, OK, I was going through a pretentious/crazy phase when I named her), and, well, she'd been a bit poorly to say the least. A phantom pregnancy turned into mastitis, and the fucker of it was that because of the time of the year -- Halloween and Guy Fawkes and all -- both my parents and myself had put her behaviour down to fear of fireworks rather than sickness. So when my folks realised it was something more, well, let's just say she wasn't a happy puppy. Not that at 14 years old you can accurately describe her as a puppy, but normally... fuck, normally she acts more like 4 than 14.

Anyway, so I'm jet-lagged to fuck and barely know what day it is, never mind what time, and my Mum's on the phone telling me that Kore's sick, and that they're taking her to the vet later on that day. Before you can say "Jesus Fucking Christ Almighty", I'm on the train to Kilwinning, sitting there with a knot in my heart, butterflies in my stomach, a lump in my throat and a bottom lip more quivery than Elvis's hips, and with all sorts of horrible thoughts going through my mind because I'm tired and strung-out, because I was too tired and strung-out to actually ask any more detail on the phone. Imagination isn't always a good thing.

So I get down to my folks' house and my "pumpkin" (hey, her fur's goldy-browny-orangey... and I'm a sentimental sap) is doing a good impersonation of the most miserable dog in the world. In fact, fuck the impersonation; she's been broody, sick, weak, shaking like a leaf, scared of fireworks, doesn't wanna go too far in the dark cause one eye's pretty cataracted... and so on; she is the most miserable dog in the world right now. Thankfully, she's not in the state I'd managed to imagine her in... but then if she had been, well, I wouldn't be fucking blogging about it.

Now it's two weeks, multiple visits to the vet, great fun and games trying to give her various antibiotics and anti-nausea pills, a lot of hand-feeding of freshly cooked chicken breast goujons, and some major TLC and frantic worry later. Last week the vet thought the infection was under control, clearing up -- so after she'd finished her antibiotics on Tuesday it was basically leave her alone, let her convalesce and just make sure she gets food and liquid into her system. Get on with yer life and let her recover. Naturally enough, though, I've been a bit distracted, and apart from the odd wee email, comment or blogbite here or there -- and a little bit of work on INK -- I haven't really had the focus to do much that's constructive.

Weirdly, though, I've had a busy week that should have taken my mind off it. But in all the catching up with friends I haven't seen since WFC I'm going from "WFC fuckin rocks!" to "Yeah... Kore's not very well at the moment." Life is, as the platitude says, ups and downs. Went back to work on Tuesday and spent the next three days thinking mostly fuck this fer a game of sodjies; I wanna be home with my dog. Christ, I cannot be fucking arsed with bullshit programming/support work right now. Had a reading/Q&A thing through in Edinburgh on Wednesday night for the Nova Scotia anthology (including some great post-panel bar-chat with some of the Edniburgh mob)... but that only reinforced the whole "why the fuck am I pissing about with the part-time job?" feeling; I know I could survive the next two years on the deals for VELLUM & INK. Fuck, I got the French rights bought just the other day. So it just feels like the Powers-That-Be are telling me to quit the day job and spend lots of hours at home, writing like a fucking madman... and stopping every hour or so to lavish attention on the dog that, quite frankly, brought order and sanity into my life. She doesn't need a 24-hour Florence Nightingale routine; I mean, she's not that bad. But it's times like this you kinda realise where your priorities lie.

Anyway, she's still nowhere near 100% and after picking up for a bit, fuck, the last few days she's been sick, had the runs, and decided that, no, she'll give the chicken breast goujons a miss, thank you very much. Today she got another check-up and while she doesn't have a temperature, the infected teats were "a bit hot"; looks like the infection's back. So we have more antibiotics, more anti-nausea pills, more fun and games. At least... at least... I came away from the vet with a couple of cans of liquid concentrated food, one of which my little pumpkin doggee just scarfed down half an hour ago, much to my relief. As long as she's fucking eating I'm, well, not quite happy but at least not shit-scared. She's a fucking well-fit dog apart from this fucking infection. Always has been. She's a pure-bred, pedigree Heinz 57, after all, a bona fide mutt whose only other bout of illness was a wee dose of gastroenteritis a few years back. I mean, I kinda wonder if her general history of health is part of what's knocked her for six here; she doesn't know what's fucking hit her cause she's never dealt with feeling quite this shitty, poor girl.

Ach... anyway... I'm off to dote on her for a wee bit. Just thought I'd blog an explanation as to why I haven't been blathering like a crazy man about how much WFC "fuckin rocks" -- with proper specifics and all. I will, I promise, actually get round to it. I know, you've heard that one from me before, but this time... honest, guv... it'll come. I mean, I haven't even told you about my Dario Argento movie impersonation... or the Secret Hotel Within The Hotel... the White Russians... the Venom Cock... soooooo many neat things.

Anyhoo... watch this space.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey hal

sympathy for yourself and kore. i've been thru the same thing.


9:22 pm  
Blogger paul f cockburn said...

Give her a gentle stroke under the chin for me.

Weird thing, though; for all the years I've known her (and paid the inevitable food Tax when visiting, I always assumed she was named "Corrie" (as in, the Scots term for "a hollow in a mountain"). My only excuse for this is the fact that my neice's cats are called "Ben" and "Corrie", since both she and her husband are into hill-walking and Munro bagging.

Should've known your reasoning would be a bit more exotic!

6:49 pm  
Blogger Jason Erik Lundberg said...

Really sorry to hear about Kore's sickness. Hope she's feeling well soon.

12:32 am  
Blogger Gretel said...

Poor baby - there's nothing more important than looking after your friends when they're poorly. I'll light a candle for her.


6:51 pm  
Blogger Dave said...

Animals just shouldn't get sick. It's not right. Best to Kore and those who love her.

10:42 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just heard the bad news about Kore at the GSFWC tonight. I'm so sorry.
Take care of yourself. Useless words, eh?

10:54 pm  

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