Late Night Open Thread

Given the events of the past few days and what is currently residing in Tunch’s former bedroom, this seems appropriate:

Tonight was a really good night integration wise. Let the Boss out into the living room for a wee bit, and Rosie did not go ballistic. Boss actually swatted her in the face, and she did nothing. So, slowly, but surely, we are reforming the pack.

Rosie, btw, has just been a super trooper. It’s kind of funny, and again, those of you who do not own animals will not understand, but her nose was very much out of joint when I brought Boss home. She had just spent the last few days being superdog and pulled me through a crisis, and now, instead of giving her her due, I went out and started loving on something she’s never seen or smelled before.

So justifiably, she was pissed. Again, unless you have owned dogs, and in particular, a Jack Russell, you will not understand this, but she spent the last two days since Boss came home sulking. Wouldn’t come when I called, every time I saw her, her tail was between her legs and her head was held low and she wouldn’t make eye contact, and if I tried to get near her, she would make a bee-line to the bedroom and go underneath the bed and stew.

Suffice it to say, she’s feeling jilted and pissed (and again, I am laughing because non pet people will completely think I am off my rocker or hammered writing this, while animal owners will just be laughing because they know EXACTLY what I am talking about). So I took her for a walk alone last night and tonight, and then, I just grabbed her and flopped onto the floor like Tunch, hugged her, and talked to her for about 15 minutes. Told her I loved her, that nothing was going to change, that we just had a new member of the family, but she was still the sweetest, etc.

And apparently it worked, because she is sitting on my lap right now as I type this, and she wouldn’t come near me since Boss got here before now.

So I got that going for me.

50 replies
  1. 1
    Steeplejack says:


  2. 2
    black onion says:

    After a shitty end of week, a friend who is diving under their kitchen table multiple times due to earthquakes and all the rest of the last week, this post was quite welcome. Hit the spot.

    Glad there is a Boss in charge somewhere.

  3. 3
    eemom says:

    Sigh. I’m so old I was of legal drinking age when that song came out.

    AND, I’m so old that legal drinking age was 18.

  4. 4
    karen says:

    Everytime I go to a friend’s house and play with their cat, I feel like I’m having an affair and Contessakitty will smell the other cat and sulk so I know exactly what you mean, John.

  5. 5

    Is it just me, or has the RSS feed for Balloon Juice been broken for the last 4 or 5 days?

  6. 6
    Studly Pantload, the emotionally unavailable unicorn says:

    Yay, integration! Rosie needs to know she’ll always be superdog. (Besides, pissed pooches can do a lot, lot worse than sulk, so I’d say you got off light, Cole — not that you don’t deserve to get off light.)

  7. 7
    Punchy says:

    Computer just got hit with that ransomeware virus that locks up your entire lappy unless you pay. Whats weird is that Im running Norton, and somehow Norton got fooled (altho its fixing it now). Is Norton a shit product or us this virus just that sophisticated?

  8. 8
    zoej says:


  9. 9
    Redshift says:

    Ah, you’re playing my song!

    The Ms. and I went to see the Brian Setzer Orchestra Christmas show last year (as we do every year they tour) and in this one, there was one part where he came out with just the drummer and bass player and played an entire Stray Cats set. I was in heaven.

  10. 10
    Culture of Truth says:

    She just needed a little reassurance. You’re their world, after all.

  11. 11
    Death Panel Truck says:

    because non pet people

    Do you seriously think there are any non-pet people here, Cole?

  12. 12
    Mnemosyne says:

    I needed to get my hair cut before we go to Chicago in a couple of weeks and I couldn’t decide what to do. After talking about layers and sideswept bangs, I finally realized, “Shit, I want a Rachel.”

    I don’t care what the haters say, that cut always looked good on me. And it still does.

  13. 13
    Mayken says:

    @Punchy: little bit from column A, little bit from column B. Actually in truth just about any AV software can get fooled by a sufficiently tricky virus. It’s an arms race out there with each side countering each other quicker than you can say “Update your virus definitions.”
    I would suggest running a second emergency AV after Norton finishes to be sure it’s really gone. Download Superantispyware or Malwarebytes, preferably on a different system and install and run it under Safe Mode.
    Best of luck!

  14. 14
    Redshirt says:

    This is like Pet Whisperer level shit.

  15. 15
    Mnemosyne says:

    Also, too, I will once again beseech any willing front-pager to post an arts & crafts thread tomorrow. (But not too early, because I’m on the West Coast and I need my sleep.) I really want to see what Linda Feathergill and donnah and the other crafty folks are up to right now.

  16. 16
    Death Panel Truck says:

    @Mnemosyne: Looked good on Mrs. Truck, too. She’s since moved on to the Susan Saint James as Sally McMillan straight hair look. We watched an episode of McMillan and Wife a while back, and she turned to me and said, “I like her hair.” I told her that hairstyle was in vogue in 1972, roughly the same year the episode was aired. She was undeterred. As long as she doesn’t ask me to grow a Rock Hudson/Stuart McMillan ‘stache, I’m okay with it.

  17. 17
    Origuy says:

    I’ve been watching UK TV via streaming video, which includes UK commercials. The phone company O2 has a cute commercial showing a cat acting like a dog: Be More Dog

  18. 18
    Suzanne says:

    @Punchy: My work machine got that. GIANT fucking PITA. And it screwed up my machine so badly that IT is considering replacing it. I have antivirus protection, too.

    You have my sympathies and commiseration.

  19. 19
    Suzanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: I have decided that I want an Aeon Flux next time.

  20. 20
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Death Panel Truck:

    I have ridiculously straight hair — my stylist once said in exasperation, “Your hair just wants to lay together and be straight!” — so I can’t do the 1970s Susan St. James look, or I basically look bald.

    Ironically, Ms. St. James herself seems to have moved on to … a Rachel.

  21. 21

    Came home one day to find that Phoebe, who had loved the new kitten for about three months, suddenly decided that she hated said kitten — and me.

    After a few days of this, I sat alone with her in the bedroom and petted her for about 15 or 20 minutes, and she went back to being the World’s Most Affectionate Cat.

    So yeah, I understand.

  22. 22
    Mnemosyne says:


    I have to admit, I was envious of DeeAnn Smith’s hair in the famous Kitten vs. Ukulele video, but I’ve had short hair before, and it’s disastrous on me. I look like a 10-year-old boy. Who wears a 36D. Not a good look. Aeon Flux would make me look like I was wearing a helmet 24/7.

  23. 23
    B Lehmann says:

    It’s a good rule to always give the pets in residence lots of extras when the interlopers arrive. It helps them accept the new guy because they associate her/his presence with increased goodness for them. This advice comes from a lady who can no longer make her bed without help because the dogs love to play in the clean sheets and take the pillows out of their cases and she just laughs and laughs.
    My pets may be a bit spoiled.

  24. 24
    Suzanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: I am a natural curlyhead, and I am just sick of having my hair long. Makes me feel like I’m trying too hard to look young. Short hair is more work, but I feel like it’s more modern and I look more confident. My office is anti-unnatural hair colors, so I have to rock the cuts.

  25. 25
    Joseph Nobles says:

    There is now a nude Geraldo selfie on Twitter. Like, he did it himself. On purpose.

    You have been warned.

    (Well, OK, there’s a towel involved, but it’s rather low. I clicked away before I saw any more than that.)

  26. 26
    Redshirt says:

    Ragnarok is Nigh!

  27. 27
    asiangrrlMN says:

    It sounds like things are going splendidly, Cole. Good on you for reassuring Rosie that she’s an integral part of the family. I know exactly what you mean. Whenever I come home from visiting another cat (and his/her person), I always feel the urge to confess to my boys.

    Boss stories really make me smile.

    @Steeplejack: Hi, you! ::waves::

  28. 28
    Narcissus says:

    @Punchy: Norton is a shit product.

  29. 29
    Gex says:

    These posts have been an amazing journey through grief towards healing. And it honestly seems to me that you are doing this the healthiest way possible (especially listening to what you need and taking the path that is right for you.)

    Dammit. Crying again.

    What you have is exceptional attunement with these animals. Relationships are the stuff of life. Our connections. And they’re all important, including pets.

  30. 30
    Amir Khalid says:

    So, is it “the Boss” or just “Boss”?

  31. 31
    Luci says:

    Of course we all understand this John Cole! I am pretty sure that Death Panel Truck is right that there are no non pet people here. I usually come here when I need a pet fix, and I stay to read the rest of the stuff! And, I have cats who “help” me make my bed too, often resulting in suspicious and wiggly lumps in the finished product. ;) I’m glad things are working out for you, Boss, Rosie, and Lily!

  32. 32
    Annamal says:

    That old myth about animals having super natural earthquake sense…total fiction.

    We’re currently beset by an earthquake swarm(which looks like it has given me the day off work tomorrow since the building is water damaged) and our cat is curled up in front of the heater and non-whiny (considering she periodically walks around the house howling for no good reason, this is pretty much a miracle).

  33. 33
    NotMax says:


    Is Norton a shit product or us this virus just that sophisticated?


    Others have already recommended Malwarebytes (absolute must-have) and Super.

    Additionally, if using Windows, get rid of Norton altogether and use Microsoft Security Essentials as your real
    time protection. (Yes, something from Microsoft that actually works properly and well.)

  34. 34
    Lojasmo says:


    Ten hassle free years on Mac products. Haven’t had to deal with antiviral issues since i went to the darksyde

  35. 35
    Lojasmo says:

    The boy appropriated my mountain bike for racing, so I just bought a new bike.

    It is everything a mountain bike should not be. Hard tail, rigid fork. It should certainly whip me into shape.

  36. 36
    donnah says:

    John, you’ve mastered the psychology of pet stewardship. :-)

    I’ve been a pet lover for thirty years, sharing my life with combinations of cats and dogs, and I know how tough transitioning between new and old animals can be. Sounds to me like you’ve got it under control.

    There’ll probably be flare-ups from time to time, but the furred ones will come around and be a family. Good for you!

  37. 37
    p says:

    great to have you back, j.c.

  38. 38
    Violet says:

    Was wondering how the girls were doing. Glad Rosie is coming around.

  39. 39

    @Amir Khalid: Its Boss Cole, like Boss Tweed.

  40. 40

    Nice to see Boss integrating. This was the first I knew about him.

    From one fat tabby to another, Curly says, “Sorry about your balls, man.”

  41. 41
  42. 42
    MikeInSewickley says:

    Nice. Why people can’t be more responsive to the positive like our pets is a mystery.

    And don’t say we have bigger brains and are more evolved. Seeing the national discourse lately, I sincerely doubt that.

  43. 43
    p says:

    i’m a naturally “curly head” who prefers longer hair that i can pull back so i don’t look like i’ve been “jiffy popped” (especially after sleeping on one side!).

  44. 44
    T. Scheisskopf says:

    Take it from someone who geeks for a living(if you can call it a living. Alas, the ’90’s and The IT Living Wage are behind us…):

    Run something like “Privazer” on your machine. Best cruft cleaner out there, for Winders, hands down. And give the author a $15.00 contribution. Or try the Wise all-in-one PC Utility. A close second.

    Run Malwarebytes, Fulll scan, especially first time you run it.

    Then, run SuperAntiSpyware, full scan.

    If you think the computer is infected, do the scans from safe mode..

    You can use the time that it takes to run the scan to make and drink mojitos, Vodka Martinis with anchovy-stuffed olives and a twist of cracked black pepper or anything you wish. That’s just good time management.

    If that all fails, nuke Winders and reinstall.

    Or run Linux. I recommend Mageia, but YMMV. Gives you more time to work on the critical stuff, like Personal Mixology.

  45. 45
    BarbCat says:

    Have missed out that you were newly adopted JC and I’m happy for you all.

    PS I am in VA and I am in awe of so many people thriving under these climatic conditions. I am doing figure 8s in an air-con just to keep my blood flowing.

  46. 46
    J R in WV says:


    After 30 years in IT, one thing I can affirm, is the Norton is worse than no protection, it IS a virus, that you’ve paid for.

    I quit using Windows for Linux, but there are a number of good and inexpensive (or even free) AV suites, as well as firewalls to keep the bad out.

    Comodo is good
    Avast is good
    ZoneAlarm is good
    BitDefender probably, gets good reviews, I’ve not used it…

    Most of these are listed on the MS list of anti-virus partners:

    McAfee is not good, Norton is not good;

  47. 47
    BruceJ says:


    Norton’s is a pox upon the computing world. Whenever we have a student or faculty member who complains they cannot connect to our VPN or are having problem accessing resources we ask “Do you have Norton’s Internet Security installed?” Nine out of ten times, the answer’s yes.

  48. 48
    BruceJ says:


    I’ve been doing this Computer Support stuff for nearly 20 years now, and ANY computer I’ve ever spent my own money on was a Mac, except one: my very FIRST computer was an Apple II+…:-)

  49. 49

    @Lojasmo: In other words, it’s an old-school mountain bike as opposed to a BMX bike by another name.

    I miss the clean lines of the early Specialized Stumpjumpers. Yeah, they had Queen Mary chainstays but they didn’t look like dirtbikes that had their engines stolen.

  50. 50

    @BruceJ: Two of our previous machines ran Norton 360, which is so fricking Byzantine you have to pay an extra $60 to have the tech walk you through how to install it without bricking your machine.

    We now run a different product.

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