by irene bean

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A Solid Foundation



Not Trying to be Corny

This Little Light of Mine

We Were Once Young

Veni, Vedi, Vinca

U Tube Has a New Star

Packing a 3-Iron

Getting Personal

Welcome Again

Well... Come on in

Christmas Shopping

There's no Substitute

Dressed for Success

Cancun Can-Can

Holy Guacamole

Life can be Crazy

The New Dog

Hurricane Reenie

He Delivers

No Spilt Milk

Naked Fingers


Have Ya Heard the One About?

The Great Caper


Barney's P***S

My New Security System


Not only am I a starving artist and a starving writer, I’m now also a starving pet sitter.

Two weeks ago I had a dilly of a job where I lost $115. I know that doesn’t seem possible, but when it comes to business sense, I’m bankrupt.

I took a job on Jumpoff. Jumpoff is a slender, freshly paved road to no where, seemingly. I’ve never been to its end, but I believe its name is due to the illusion of jumping off the Plateau down to Alabama.

Everyday, twice each day, I drove Jumpoff to the job – 70 miles each day – 280 miles later, the 4-day gig was up. I neglected to factor into my bid the mileage, maintenance, and travel time. I invoiced according to my bid, though – seemed the only fair and honorable thing to do. Yet, I was a smidgeon bitter regarding my lack of business acumen – I was sooooo annoyed with myself.

As I do with all my clients (there‘s that important word again), I left a journal of pet activity during the job. It’s no wonder I don’t post daily! I bulleted my gaffes to explain why future jobs would cost $58 per day. Yet, I took full responsibility and billed according to my bid.

One week later I still hadn’t received payment or a phone call. Despair set in, but I couldn’t imagine my clients stiffing me. Yesterday, a check arrived *Hallelujah* – with an extra $40.00. *Double Hallelujah*.

Though still in the hole regarding my fees and expenses, the extra $40 was a good faith effort I appreciated.


Yesterday, I got a call inquiring about my fees. I gave the basics. It was another Jumpoff person, so I quickly explained my additional fees per mile. She didn’t flinch. Then she explained it wasn’t the dog and cat that concerned her. She then described her chicken, which lives in her home. Lucky for her I’m now accustomed to coops & chickens & roosters, oh my! She also told me about the Skink in her home. Hmmmm, Skink? I chewed on that for a moment. Is a Skink related to a Skank? Or is a Skink the Southern pronunciation of Skunk? She described the Skink job as being nasty. That’s it, I thought, she has a live-in Skank! The Skink, she continued, has to be fed live bugs. My mind went SCREEEEEECH! “Excuse me,” I finally said, “what’s a Skink?” Ends up, it’s a lizard. I sighed so quietly, I don’t think she heard me.

Then I asked when she would need my services. It ends up I couldn’t take the job – it conflicts with my *real* time off since March. A dear friend from California is flying in, and I’m taking no jobs.

So, that’s it, folks. Gonna get me some vittles. I’m starving.

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