“hepped up on goofballs”

Greetings everyone; once again it is I, Chess the traumatized purebred border collie, here to delight you, and to assure you that I’m doing okay after today’s incident. You may remember me from such posts as “On A Rampage” and “The Dog And The Bottle Tree” (which was partly about me and has some relevance today) among so many others.

Here I am, hepped up on goofballs.


While the guy I live with was moving plants out of the North Border, I was standing there watching him, and I had a seizure. He came over to help, like to make sure I didn’t hit my head, and I accidentally bit him, but he said that was okay. I got dragged to the Bad Place where they checked me out, drew blood, and now I seem fine. I ate my dinner and went on my walk, just like normal, but hepped up on goofballs. (My mommy loved “The Simpsons”, in case you were wondering.)

My buddy Slipper had seizures when he went through the door to the Bad Place, and the guy I live with now thinks my episode last summer was a seizure too. (His father, a disabled vet from the Korean War, had them, too.)

So both our days were pretty much wrecked, but things seem back to normal now. I’m a lot mellower on phenobarbital, and maybe that’s a good thing all around. But, the guy I live with suggested I might post about this in case I didn’t pull through and he had to do the posts by himself. He was half freaked out and half surprisingly calm during the whole thing.

Anyway, whew, what a day. Here are some pictures of the garden he’s working on. Or, really, destroying.





I think I’ll change the subject. Maybe these pictures were already shown, but showing them again can’t hurt. This shows how naughty my buddy Slipper could be. (I’ve never been this naughty.)





And here are some details from watercolors my mommy drew. Penstemons first.



Then some columbines, or maybe I should say columbines and the flying things that visit them.



I just felt like showing these in order to lighten the mood. I think I’m okay, what with being hepped up on goofballs, and so do the people at the Bad Place, even though they stuck me with needles.

Until next time, then.

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26 Responses to “hepped up on goofballs”

  1. petabunn says:

    Chess now I’m worried. I’m glad you feel better now, if you can still go for a walk and more importantly eat your dinner then you’re fine. Wouldn’t hurt to play it up a bit, get a biscuit and cheese look on your expressive face, why not milk the situation . Take it easy…

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; well, the guy I live with says Dostoevsky and Neil Young had (have) the same thing. It was just, in the moment, it seemed to him that I was leaving him, until he was able to put two and two together. My episode last summer was just like the one today, except that it involved me knocking over the portable swamp cooler (which was full of water and weighed a lot, and shorted out when it was knocked over), and so, the guy I live with, stoic philosopher that he pretends to be, says we can live with this.
      Tomorrow I’ll find out if I get to take goofballs for a long period of time. I tend to get overly agitated at things; thunder, people at the front door, being left alone (which is only for short periods …oh, I mean for hours), mice caught in the Tin Cat, moths flying into my bedroom, the vacuum cleaner, coffee being ground, taking things out of the freezer, hammering of any kind, etc., and so maybe I’ll be mellower.
      It was kind of embarrassing, let me tell you, on our walk, when the guy I live with tried to catch “samples”. He made a dish out of the bottom half of a plastic water jug, and slipped it under me every time I tried to mark my territory. Naturally he got soaked. (This seems to be a running theme lately.) But he was able to take some back to the Bad Place this evening, for testing.

  2. This freaks me out just to read about. Oh dear sweet Chess (throws arms around your neck and leaves a kiss). Besides the hellish interference with your voiding action, how does it feel to do your walk on goofballs? I think you should sit around on a cushion and receive morsels of cheese, brie for choice.
    Thank you for showing the watercolors. Their loveliness did assuage the mood, and, yes, I believe I do feel mellower. Some part of mellower is your portrait shows purebred border collie of an unusually good looking sort as per usual.
    Whew. Everyone here, including Shredder and Petey, wish you and the guy you live with the best. (Curiosity impels the question: did the folks at the Bad Place take care of your person’s accidental bite too?)

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. No, the guy I live with is so unbelievably tough, he just washed it at their sink. he has Bacitracin at home, and I don’t have rabies.
      I got some Amish blue cheese yesterday, and, um, uh, the guy I live with said it made for a “rather different experience last night”.
      My walk went just as normal. I wanted to walk all the way down past the willows, which we haven’t been doing on our afternoon walk, but the guy I live with suggested we turn around, because I was going so fast, and he needed more “samples”. The indignity of it.

      One time, when we went to the Bad Place after my mommy left us, and the guy I live with’s sister came along, my buddy Slipper had a seizure when he walked through the door, and my sister looked down and said, “Oh, a seizure”.Her dog had them, and they were both used to their father having them, and they were much, much worse.
      Now that the guy I live with has linked this episode with the one I had last summer, he feels better about it.He wasn’t paying enough attention last time, that’s all.
      Besides, we like to have our days filled with adventure.

  3. Karen says:

    You are definitely looking wonderful even though you are on goofballs Chess. Your mum was certainly a talented artist and our dog Ben being another pure bred Border Collie did absolutely disgraceful things with toilet paper and our furniture, not to mention the backyard when he was a pup. He was that naughty he was banished from the house, until he learned manners. Needless to say even though his manners have improved, and now he sleeps in the house at four years of age, he still has no respect for plants or gardens, except for roses which he used to nip the buds off but has now learned to appreciate their wonderful fragrance. I guess roses don’t really taste all that good. I certainly do wish you more lovely days and hope you to see you around for a while yet. Have a lovely weekend both of you.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. Though, we don’t have weekends. Every day is the same, and the guy I live with is often not certain what day it is.
      I hear that my grampa Flurry was a chewer, and things had to be smeared with bitter apple. The ficus that’s upstairs in our bedroom still shows signs of being chomped on. The solution was to get him a buddy. Who then chewed on him. That was my uncle Pooka. He died in 2000, and then the guy I live with and my mommy went to a goat ranch, where they had puppies, “just to look”. Just to look, can you believe that? The guy I live with picked one up, burst into tears, and told my mommy this puppy was coming home with us. That was my buddy Slipper. He pulled my grampa Flurry’s tail all the time, so things worked out in some sort of way.

  4. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Oh dear Chess, I’m so sorry that you’ve had two episodes now! I’ve lived with three dogs through the years who had seizures which were controlled for years by goofballs. Doesn’t make this less scary for you or the guy but I’m sending positive energy your way! I didn’t know that your mom was such a gifted artist and am so glad that you shared some of her gorgeous work. Be well furry friend.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks, I can use positive energy. There’s lot to be said for goofballs. Ned Flanders was accused of being hepped up on them, and so I don’t feel so bad.
      My mommy’s watercolors are mostly in the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie-Mellon University, in Pittsburgh. They asked her for one, some years ago, and she was very honored and excited, and if she were here now, with a dozen of them there, she would have been all like, “I have watercolors in the Hunt” and things like that. The guy I live with encouraged her to learn how to do watercolors, since he knew she could draw, and one of the first https://paridevita.com/2013/01/06/penstemons-etc/ the crocus, was in the Smithsonian when she was a member of Guild of Natural Science Illustrators.
      And in fact, the three books they did together were really just a vehicle for her watercolors. (They’re out of print but two are available print-on-demand, minus the watercolors.)

  5. Deborah S. Farrell says:

    Our first poodle, Dollar, had seizures from about 2 yrs. old. It was always very upsetting to us, but he was a trooper. I’m sure you’re a trooper, too, Chess. I hope there are no more trips to the Bad Place for you for a long, long time.

    Love the watercolors. The moth in the penstemon painting looks like it might be a pandorus sphinx moth. I was awed by finding one on the side of our house a couple of years ago. When I looked it up, I found that Virginia Creeper is the host plant for its caterpillar, and guess what? Virginia creeper grows all over the fence on that side of the house. The birds planted it there.

    • paridevita says:

      It’s a five-lined sphinx moth, Hyles lineata. I know that because my mommy was crazy about moths.

      • Deborah S. Farrell says:

        I had to look up five-lined sphinx moth, and found that I know it as Hummingbird moth — which I’ve only seen in flight, so I didn’t know what it looked like except as a blur. In fact, I went a little apeshit happy crazy the first time I saw one. I didn’t realize until I looked it up just now what an immpressively wide variety of host plants the caterpillar will eat, nor did I know it’s “a key pollinator of the rare lemon lily (Lilium parryi) in California” (wikipedia).

        I’m a butterfly lady, mostly a Monarch lady. I bring monarch caterpillars in and raise them inside & we tag & release them when they emerge (eclose is the proper term) from their chrysalis. I also try to convince gardeners to plant host plants — convince them that they WANT these plants to be eaten by caterpillars (or no butterflies). It’s a Sisyphean task. I hope the guy you live with has milkweed in his garden. For the monarchs. I’m not sure what kinds of milkweed grow at that altitude. Probably different species than are native to the oh-so-flat Midwest.

      • paridevita says:

        Almost a hopeless task. The guy I live with doesn’t kill anything in the garden, and tomato plants were raised for the caterpillars. One year my mommy found cecropia caterpillars on something, and she built a cage for them, but only one female made it through the winter. When she emerged from the cocoon, the huge male cecropia moths flew around the garden at twilight, hoping for, like, a date. He says it was quite a sight.
        He has Asclepias speciosa, self sown here, and A. asperula, and A. hallii, and, he earnestly hopes, A. cryptoceras. If the last one lives through the winter (it’s native to western Colorado, westward, but isn’t easy to grow) I suppose I’ll never hear the end of it.
        Saw one monarch this year. Lots of swallowtails, though.
        Lots and lots of hawkmoths, Hyles lineata.
        Look here. https://paridevita.com/2013/06/14/the-sphinx/ The guy I live with tends to post the same pictures over and over again, but he’s entering his declining years. At least that’s his excuse.

  6. Crocus speciosus watercolor in the link is gorgeous, capturing and going beyond in delicacy (watercolor!) the one you show in photographs. Have to say, sorry the art is dusty, but not my call.
    Whatever happened to the puppy in that post? Is it the same who lit out for Kansas when the firecrackers started? Is the goat farm still there?
    Chess and the guy you live with: “All will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of thing will be well.”

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks, Dame Juliana. See what I know. Juliana of Norwich, to be precise.
      The puppy in that post is Choncho the cattle dog. He lives three doors down and I like to bark at him as much as he likes to bark at me. The guy I live with, though, says after he finishes his fence he’s going to help the neighbor put up his fence, so we won’t be having barkfests so much any more.

  7. I am so relieved by readers’ reassuring comments.

    Those paintings are so beautiful. They being tears to my eyes.

  8. Fisher, the Wonder Dog says:

    Oh Chess, dear Chess–I know there are so many other adventures you’d rather be having! We have no experience with seizures around here but they do seem so very frightening for all concerned. I hope the goofballs help to smooth things out for you. I can’t imagine that any of this is easy for you and the guy you live–all we can do at this end is send our warmest thoughts and best wishes. So that fuzzy feeling in your head is not really the goofballs doing their job, it’s actually the loving energy being sent to you by all of your blog followers. Same goes for the fuzzy feeling in the guy’s head. From now on may the road rise up to meet you, rather than the other way around.

    Clearly, Slipper was a rascal. But I have often heard it said that if one doesn’t give a border collie a job to do, then he will find a job himself, and that it will rarely be what right-minded humans would consider a Good Choice.

    We are huge fans of botanical illustration and find your mommy’s paintings to be true stunners! And to think she was self-taught just boggles the mind….

    • paridevita says:

      He gets fuzzy feelings in his head because he’s old. The goofballs seem to work okay; my day went just like any other day, except that we forgot to take a nap. Well, I really didn’t.

  9. Vivian Swift says:

    Those are the best botanical illustrations I’ve ever seen. And of course she was self-taught. You can’t teach someone how to be an artist (altho there are lots of people who will take your money by promising just that) art any more than you can teach a person how to take a hint. An artist is born, not made. Art school would have ruined her talent.

    Oh dear, dizzy spells don’t sound good. And if all it takes is a goofball now and then to tamp down the electricity in the brain than I want some too, please.

    That thing with the toilet roll. Was it a second law of thermodynamics exercise or a gravity experiment?

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. If you look at the black-and-white drawings in the room, where my buddy Slipper and I are, in “Yet Another Crisis”, the wolf on the right is the first drawing my mommy ever did.
      She got really mad at the guy I live with when he signed the contract for the penstemon book because she’d never worked in watercolor before. He said she could do it.
      My buddy Slipper was juts plain naughty. He used to shred paper towels, and Kleenex too.

  10. pamit says:

    Beautiful watercolors! That last one exactly hits the colors of red columbines, which are so subtle. –I am without my dog for a week, on business travel, so I share a smidgen of what your guy must have felt, Chess.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. It was interesting to watch my mommy match hues with the actual flowers. I was allowed to watch. She shooshed away the guy I live with, because she found him so irresistible she would get distracted. Or so he says.

  11. Adele says:

    Again you make me smile with tears in my eyes. You are quite good at that. The watercolors are truly lovely. I could look at them for hours. I bet you do that too.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks, they are lovely, but no longer here. Many of them are in the Hunt Institute. The only one I kept was the Crocus speciosus.
      The paper she used was given to her by Anne Ophelia Dowden.
      We used to spend what I thought was an excessive amount of time looking at paper, at art supply houses.

  12. Chess, I am amazed you can even keep your eyes open on those “goofballs”. My late Airedale, Ozzie, had seizures toward the end of his life, and the phenobarb absolutely put him out like a light. Not easy to accomplish with any self-respecting terrier. You mother’s work is stunning! You must miss her terribly.

    • paridevita says:

      Well, we border collies can be pretty hyper. It seems as though the goofballs have just mellowed me out slightly. They say that dogs can adjust to the sedative qualities, but it could be just some dogs.
      My eyes are closed in today’s post, but that’s because I’ve become tired of having silly pictures taken.
      Yes, we do miss her terribly; I think the guy I live with misses her more and more every day. This is almost certainly why he piled up a bunch of gravel in the back yard to make another rock garden; it’s the most intense type of gardening he knows.

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