Contrib: Rusty

Dinah tells us about these many ginger cats she sees at the place where she swims. So we tell her to make contact and bring us proof, not that we think she is making free with the truth, but people do not always have the same perception as we cats; indeed, people are given to exaggerations on many occasions, such as the stories they tell about sporting victories and the reasons for not returning from the Emporium with what we consider to be sufficient supplies of Crunchies and Jellimeat.

It seems there are, indeed, “many” ginger cats.

ginger cats at pool 1Breakfast (Just waiting in case she leaves any…)

playing with a plastic forkA discarded plastic fork provided kitten fun.

after breakfast washA good wash after breakfast is important and if you can find a sunny spot, all the better.

after breakfast snooze…all the better for snoozing, too!

2009_0220snake0004This is as close as you’re getting, Two Legs Person!

Dinah says she has counted 7 ginger cats and I say this is a Ginger Fellowship and the Lady  Boss says there more than 7 and she says it is a Conspiracy! She also says that she would like to catch these Fellows (Ginger Order) and take them to the Person-Whose-Name-We-Do-Not-Speak, thus ensuring that the Fellowship will be limited to present members.



And at this point, I reclaim my blog…

It’s been a run of break-downs and blow-ups and various failures Chez Dinahmow…the microwave (marvellously handy place to hide food from Feline Thieves as they can’t open the door!) ping-ed and arc-ed so I’m guessing its magnetron is kaput. My sewing machine went pffft! and belched smoke yesterday in what could be a blown motor or, more likely, since it’s engineered by Swiss genius, burnt circuit board and the bonnet hinges on the Mustang need replacing.

I felt I could use a little cheeriness…and look what was on my doorstep when I came home from the pool……a parcel of sketchbooks! The exchange we began a year ago. This is my book, all finished except for the cover.

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0001My opening page

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0002…and the facing page.

My book then travelled to Melanie in The Bronx2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0003who added this embroidered piece, picking up my black and red colours and swirls and sent it on to…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0004Katie Jane, in Cincinatti, who does lovely stained glass work and has made this page a look-alike.

From Kate  it went international again to Ellen in Mission, B.C.  Knowing my fondness for corvids…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0005…Ellen has added this!

From Canada, the book came back to Australia…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0006…and  Brigitte, again picking up my swirly lines, gave me this and sent the book to Alison…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0007…who added this linoprint, plus…


an embossed version of the same plate.(difficult to see here)

Alison passed the book to Heather…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0009…for her collaged linoprint.

From Heather to Frankie…

2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0010…the first half of Frankie’s spread…

…and the second half…2009_0221mfirsttravellingbook0011

What a lovely collection of friends and memories! I am so glad we did this and I hope everyone else has had the same frisson whenever the postman knocked.

Sure, some of us feel our artwork  leaves much to be desired, but the whole point of starting this exchange was for fun. I’ve had fun and perhaps, just maybe, my sketching is improving.

Thankyou to all of you who added your colourful, whimsical pages to a book I’ll treasure.

I’ll post pictures of the covers once they are added.


What else is happening in my world? Printmaking. Of course. I am, once again, up to my ears in ink. (see what I mean about the human tendancy to exaggerate? – Rusty.)

Perhaps the cat is right. Perhaps the ink is not quite that deep. But I do have a lot on my plate(s) so the blog may be neglected for a while…

But I’ll be paying a few cyber visits. Oh, thankyou so much for asking! Yes, I’d love a coffee. Straight-up, no sugar. A glass of wine? Don’t mind if I do. Shiraz would be fine, thankyou.




And now, for your delectation, a test of your cognitive abilities. Keep in mind (as I try to now that the birthday cake is going into candle-overload!) that the brain will last longer and wear better with constatnt use and stimulation. So, Auntie Ethel, turn off that stupid  TV show and give your neurons reason to fire. Synap out of it, as a friend of mine says!

1. How do you put a giraffe into a refrigerator? 


Stop and think about it and decide on your answer before you scroll down.



The correct answer is: Open the refrigerator, put in the giraffe, and close the door. This question tests whether you tend to do simple things in an overly complicated way.



2 How do you put an elephant into a refrigerator? 





Did you say, Open the refrigerator, put in the elephant, and close the refrigerator?

Wrong Answer.

Correct Answer: Open the refrigerator, take out the giraffe, put in the elephant and close the door. This tests your ability to think through the repercussions of your previous actions.




3. The Lion King is hosting an animal conference. 

All the animals attend …. Except one. Which animal does not attend?



Correct Answer : The Elephant. The elephant is in the refrigerator. You just put him in there.? This tests your memory. Okay, even if you did not answer the first three questions correctly, you still have one more chance to show your true abilities.




4. There is a river you must cross but it is used by crocodiles, and 


You do not have a boat. How do you manage it?




Correct Answer:? You jump into the river and swim across. Have you not been listening? All the crocodiles are attending the Animal Meeting. This tests whether you learn quickly from your mistakes.

According to Anderson Consulting Worldwide, around 90% of the 
Professionals they tested got all questions wrong, but many preschoolers got several correct answers. Anderson Consulting says this conclusively disproves the theory that most professionals have the brains of a four-year-old.












There are those times in our lives when we have to address harsh realities. Some of us, neat, tidy thinkers, possessed of neat, tidy minds, address these realities before they develop their sharp edges.

But most of us procrastinate.

I have been writing this post post in my head for a while now and various factors came into play that have pushed it forward. Not least, the ghastly business of trying to pick up the pieces after  a disaster, like the bush fires.

HAVE YOU MADE AND FILED A WILL? Because if you answer “no”, you may be setting up your family and friends for a long, painful and expensive court battle.

This  is traumatic for those dealing with small estates. For people with extensive “intellectual property” it is a nightmare.

If you are an artist (by which I mean writer, painter, poet,musician…you know what I mean), don’t just think that it’s all too left-brain and assume someone else will do that. And if your “domestic arrangements” have changed clarity of intent is even more important.

Neil Gaiman, who is currently very much in the news, following the huge success of the film Coraline, has a pertinent post here. (If the link is not redirecting, go to October 30, 2006.) I urge you to read it, then go back and re-read my post title. Lecture over!


I’ve been humming an old George Formby number this morning. English readers over the age of, say 50 or 60, will get it if I say you’ll be surprised the things I see, when I’m cleanin’ winders!

Well, truth to tell, I didn’t see a lot. Too much grime. And almost enough dirt in the sill well to start a window box ! Have I ever mentioned how much I dislike cleaning these windows? Probably! I bitch about them all the time. Great for tropical summers, but a sod to keep clean.


It’s done! Cut, inked-up, pressed, dried (I hope!) and ready to be signed. The exchange is on Sunday so book your seats for Monday’s show. Roll up! Roll up!

New readers to this blog will not have a clue what I’m talking about. It’s called, in the writing game, “a hook.” The writer gives a hint of some portentous event, to be revealed in the next chapter. Roll up! Roll up!


Somewhere, out in the wide world,  are our travelling sketchbooks. Exactly where, I’m not sure, but they must be almost due to wing their way home to their starting points?

When they are all back with their people the whole jolly venture will begin again. So if any of you want to give this a whirl I say: round up a group of like minds and get cracking. It’s fun, it extends your abilities and you might even pick up a little more html know-how! No guarantees, mind!


rhinestonesLike rhinestones?

garden-puddleMy new garden pond. After torrential rain this puddle was about 3 or 4 inches deep (nearly 100mm). And because it would have taken a couple of days to drain, I sprinkled a few drops of vegetable oil on the surface to kill mosquitoe larvae. (Frogs can still eat the larvae; the oil does them no harm.)

The sky is looking ominously pewter again so this might be a good time to nip out for some essentials (yes, the usual essentials.Of course.) before another cloud-burst. At least we’ve had 24 hours of dry weather and the forecasts are not for further flooding. Just a damn’ shame we can’t send some south…


It’s arrived! Despite my fingers being stiff and cold this morning, I was able to open the package from Frankie. And it is so much better to see the real thing as photos just don’t do it justice! (But here’s a photo, anyway!)

MUGS, the opening page…

The opposite spread in Frankie\'s pages.

And JUGS, the opposite spread.

Glowing water colours! How shall I follow this? Hmmm… perhaps I’ll just spend the weekend drinking it in. Now…which mug shall I drink from…


Over at Little Cat Diaries, Tom has been running a competition to find the meanest-lookin’ moggie. Just for a laugh, I sent a picture of Milo (neighbours’ cat who is the sire of Geiger and Sporran) and guess what? Milo has made the short list! He’s #6.

I’d like to give him the news, but he seems to have wandered off again; probably wearing his “battle ” face!

Still on cats…here’s the latest on Geiger. The eye is still stitched, but she does have some vision. I continue to put gooey ointment in twice a day. And she was on antibiotics, too, but after 4 days of that, her poor little tum couldn’t hack it . Never mind the unpleasant details, let’s just say that she had another trip to the vet. yesterday. I’m giving her Mylanta, a proprietary brand of antacid gloop made for humans. And it’s worked a treat! She’s eating again. Of course, she thinks she has to scoff extra portions to make up for the lost days! And, naturally, Rusty and Sporran are backing her to the hilt!

That being the case, I’d better take my basket to the purveyor of pussy fare. A busy weekend ahead and the hanging of our cafe exhibition on Monday so I may be gone for a few days.

Here’s a little something for my friends across the water.