Category Archives: Pet Life

The Woods Are Lovely, Dark And Deep…

But I have promises I have to keep,

And miles to go before I sleep,

And miles to go before I sleep.

          • from “Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening,” by Robert Frost

Fatigued yet excited, I pushed my truck up a slithery thin road coated with sticky, humid fog. No lights along or on the road to guide, I lowered my high beams and windows, using sound and smell to help me through the most uncertain of situations: finding my campsite at a state park I’ve never been to, completely shrouded in tall pine darkness, in a state famously known for horrific acts upon humans who didn’t look like they belonged. I not only tested Fate but I mocked her, and after some back and forth on the windy roads, I found the site, my lot, and praise Allah, a full restroom with functioning showers!

Bobby Tiberius took the role of guard dog as I rinsed off the agony of Arkansas. Friggin’ Arkansas with its major construction, which the locals will appreciate and I will refuse to traverse anytime soon. My bunk, the back of the truck, with my faithful senechaux to one side, and the local radio station broadcasting from the dashboard, lulling us to quick slumber.

The following morning, I used the dictation feature of Inkpad to capture my thoughts en Existenz. Here’s my best transcription based on the choppy voice file:

8 AUGUST: I woke up this morning to the sound of chimmy chimmy chimmy chimmy, a bird I am not familiar with … [and all I can think is] it’s a great way to wake up in the morning. … it’s been a while since I’ve woken up before sunrise; got cleaned up, walked the dog, got breakfast [out of the truck,] a nice bento box of peanut butter sandwiches and fruit for breakfast. The way the sun hits the pine tree behind the picnic table, just so warm and inviting I don’t feel any anxiety here, which kind of [strengthens] the fact that I’m much more comfortable in nature then I am in society. Waldo Emerson, David Thoreau were absolutely right; the man in nature is truly complete.

Think about for a sec…you got a running shower, you’ve got gorgeous atmosphere, scenery, isolation…man! People are too afraid to go outside! That is based on fear.

If you’re one who understands that fear is a motivator, or you’ve broke past fear … use it rather as an engagement of intention, you can pull into a state park at any evening in the dark of night and feel completely at ease.

I hate that I need a cigar to wake up, but frankly I don’t have any heating element to which I can quickly make hot water to make a cup of hot tea.

So I already have it planned for next time; book lot #2 and lot #3 of the campground, which is right across from a playground with a Frisbee golf course, a beautiful walk along the side [of it.] Waking up listening [huh?? to birds, maybe?] is the life for me. For 14 dollars you can’t get that shit in a hotel! You can’t have a conversation with the gods in a hotel! (NOTE: I recall looking up into the pines taking pictures while saying this) To which makes me think that hotels are for the lonely and fearful … I think this is the best way for me to travel, feeling most at home. I can totally see me coming out here, plugging into a outlet with my laptop, writing from sunrise to sunset. The potential to imagine would be limitless, words undisturbed and I feel, [would be] of the best quality.

I noticed that my lot neighbor has a camper and a city truck and I can only assume he might be living here. (NOTE: Waved at him when he pulled off to work, so think I was talking towards him) I don’t blame you; this is perfect.

I imagine the reason why young people don’t like to camp is because they have watched too many horror movies, like they learn from what they see on the screen, and think that’s reality… equal to reality; the reality is that you can, with nature, transcend into something greater than one is used to, become truly connected. I don’t feel I can ever longer advocate for society, I certainly can [advocate for a] transcendental experience.

In Good Company

Midwest, Ho!

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Minutes prior to this photo, Bob laid a massive dump on Clinton’s park…

Wherever I May Roam

 

 

Yes folks, this is happening. I’m hittin’ the road starting this week!

Where to Von? I honestly don’t know. I’ve got gas, I’ve got maps, I’ve got information and communication technologies, and I have a badge-wearing wingman to help drive and navigate.

Why are you doing this Von? Life-wise, I need some sparkly fresh brand new so I can feel the wow again. Creatively speaking, my writing is uninspired largely because I’ve deprived myself of Befindlichkeit, which is a big pretty German word for self-discovery. Discovery is tangible – what you experience with your senses within current time/space – but self-discovery requires a more metaphysical…event, let’s put it. I’m gonna position myself in physical places I’ve never been before, connect cosmically with what or whoever has a cosmic charge, and throw myself into uncertainty, allowing reactions to happen in whichever plane of existence that happens.

And no, I am not using any drug, natural or manufactured, in order to encourage these events forward. Clean and sober and open-minded. That’s how this is going down!

I will regularly post to this blog, at least to let you know I haven’t been slaughtered. Since I’ll be working off of WordPress for Android, my posts might be more Instagrammy than verbose; I’m sure you’ll understand. :)

I will tell you I’m not doing the Atlantic seaboard or New England; I’ve done that drive four times in the past ten years. Something fresh and new means in the guts of Merica! Maybe even up to oohhhhh Caaaannaaaddaaaahhhhhhh

This is Von Simeon, signing off, and leaving you with a sweet song to remember me by…

 

If You’ve Got 5 Minutes, Could You Please Judge Me?

You know how you look at a thing too long you don’t know if you’re done? I’ve updated two of my Pages, “All About Von” and “Make Contact”.  Well if you could just dance through those, offer edits where necessary, so I can stop looking at this, I’d really appreciate it!

Going to walk away and shower while you do that. Maybe eat lunch. Yeah, lunch…

I Missed Ya, Baby!!

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So, while I was on WordPress hiatus, I:

    1. Skinned my knee falling off the wagon

    2. John Connor’ed my nephew

    3. Violated my personal code of conduct and accepted a date…WITH A COP.

    4. Received a growl from Bobby on his 5th born day

    5. Forced a 1st grader to do math (related to #4)

    6. Blew up eBay

    7. Made like Mowgli and returned to my “people”

    8. Decided to celebrate Christmas in July, Jack Kerouac style

    9. Mastered the Nooky and fell in love with Scrivener a la HER

    10. Went vegan for a vampire story!

Tell me via Comments which one you want me to elaborate on, and I’ll feature it in these week’s posts. For my new followers gained during the break, ♥THANK YOU♥ and enjoy these bears!

Hot Mess

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Someone is none too happy about his current situation. Been throwing dog tantrums all day. Even tried to run away but was stopped by the patrol officer.
Fucking dog.

Remembering Bear

[NOTE: Forgive any typos. I've been bawling my ass off putting this together.]

Bear was born on May 28, 1998 in Dallas, Texas, the son of an AKC champion American Cocker Spaniel. Larger than regulation, Bear was given as a companion to the champion’s owner’s father. Over time, the senior member of the family succumbed to Alzheimer’s disease, and the family, unable to keep up with his obligations, sent Bear to the Cocker Spaniel Rescue Society of Austin. His age, along with his obesity due to overfeeding, made it difficult to get Bear adopted. He also refused to come out of his kennel on show days, so the volunteers concentrated on their other rescue dogs.

On January 2003, Bear discovered his future companion at a Rescue Society adoption day.  That fateful afternoon, Bear left his kennel and approached a small, chubby woman sitting on the floor, sniffed her hands and leaned his head on her lap. The volunteers, amid gasps of bewilderment, signed her up for a home inspection and a background check. Clearing both, Bear came to live with Ivonne and earned the additional name, Cleophus, “the wise.”

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Upper left: The feud between Bear and Smokie was akin to the Hatfields and McCoys Upper right: Bear me and Andrea at the University of Tampa Bottom left: The apartment we lived in before the 2004 Hurricane season damaged the place Bottom right: Bear trotting in front of Texas State Alumni Association House (undergrad alma mater)

A month later, Bear traveled to Florida to start a new life in North Tampa. He excelled in strutting, playing adorable, and begging for food. Bear was not a dog at all, but a very vain small humanoid trapped in a canine body. He was an excellent party host, and an aficionado of wines, reds in particular, and was no stranger to vodka. Bear Cleophus also enjoyed the occasional weed “shotty” up the snout, making him giddy and goofy to the entertainment of all.

Bear did have his doggie duties. His expertise was in scrutinizing male suitors as they entered the home. If he liked the man, Bear would play with him. If he didn’t, he’d create a ring of judgement by neatly laying biled excrement in a perfect circle on the floor, ideally near the failed man’s property.

He was a master of deception, owning a loud, guttural bark for a medium-sized dog, and used it to keep the unwanted at bay.

Another of Bear’s duties was playing the proverbial sidekick, the Tonto to Ivonne’s Lone Ranger. In 2004, Bear traveled from Tampa to Long Island, New York in the back of a Honda CRV to keep his familiar company on her first Atlantic Coast drive. Noticing she had stopped at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, scared witless to proceed forward, Bear Cleophus climbed to the front of the SUV, sat in the passenger seat facing forward, and told her, “You got this.” He encouraged her to crank up the volume on the album “The Wall” by Pink Floyd, and sat with her as she went under and above the water. From that moment on, Bear always rode shotgun.

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Top: How strung out I was after driving 9 states. Bear? Ready to party! Middle: weirdest obsession of his was the lime juice squeeze bottles Bottom: being goofy in the U-Haul. Yep, that’s me driving!

Bear Cleophus was also an academic. He attended Penn State University with his companion from 2006 to 2008. Ever the vainglorious daemon, Bear would pick up hot chicks and dudes as Ivonne studied on the steps of Old Main. Bear spent countless hours in the AERS lab as his companion entered sheets upon sheets of primary-sourced data for her thesis. He had his own cushion by her office desk in 311 Armsby, and became a de facto mascot, boosting morale for all the economists, demographers, and community builders in the program. Upon graduation day, Bear Cleophus received a silver dog tag with a lion paw and the school’s name emblazoned across, making him Bear Cleophus, Master of Science.

As evidenced, Bear and Ivonne were inseparable. There was only one moment in time they were not allowed together. For eight agonizing months, the demonstrably fickle ex-husband refused to let Bear live with his “mother,” and it took mediation and separation of assets to allow Bear into her custody. Soon after the divorce was finalized, Bear returned with his companion to Florida, this time, to Saint Petersburg, to turn a story idea about a mercenary with superhuman powers into a novel.

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Upper left: NOT a fan of baths Upper right: Striking a pose at my alma mater Below: Nifty B&W pic in the Tampa condo; he looks like one of the sand people!

Bear Cleophus aged seemingly overnight, losing his vision and hearing rapidly, and in response, Roberto Tiberius was brought to Saint Petersburg in 2012 to fill in on guard duties. Bear’s final road trip was to Tarpon Springs in January 2013 to experience the Epiphany tradition of diving for the cross. Bear held Death at bay, wanting to ensure the manuscript was delivered to the publisher, wanting to celebrate one more birthday.  Blind, deaf, weak-limbed, exhausting cold air, his companion had to tell him, “Whatever you’re holding onto, it’s okay to let go. I’m going to miss you. I’m going to be fine.” The next day, May 9th, 2013, a beautiful sunny afternoon, Bear Cleophus let go.

Bear’s contribution to this existence is immortalized in Ivonne’s novel, “Dedicated to Bear Cleophus Espada (May 1998 – May 2013), the little black dog who told me to write this story.”

Meet The Author! Gulfport ArtWalk Saturday April 19th 6-10pm

 

 

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Feel like visiting the Gulf Coast this weekend? Come join me and other artists as we share and sell our wares. Check out this badass raffle…

 

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