It also reminded me of something important, something I forget far too often. Ever since Riley got sick, I found it increasingly difficult to troll the Internet, looking for things to write about for the blog, because -- as you know -- it's a task that involves reading a lot of smug cruelty by a lot of willfully stupid people who think heartlessness is a school of thought, rather than a symptom of sociopathy. It was especially hard to do when my lap was occupied by Riley, who despite her unrivaled ability to throw shade at the camera, never did a deliberately mean thing in her life; never bit, never scratched, even when she was in pain, and who only ever demanded that we administer her medicine and her treats in the proper order and at exactly the same time every day; that we give her the lap-time she was legally entitled to, the underpants she craved, and that we spank her while saying "Pank! Pank! Pank!" (and you had to say it, believe me, or she'd glare until you did), because she took her fetishes seriously.
Anyway, WorldNetDaily and Townhall and American Thinker and all those sites comprise a rich vein of derp, and making fun of it is cathartic; however, it can also make you feel like the world is full of horrible people. And not even conflicted, interesting villains, but people who seem to delight in their own horribleness.
But I know there are many more good and kind people in the world, because they've touched my life. When I asked for help with Riley's medical bills, you guys responded immediately. Old friends, familiar names from the comments rallied 'round, but also a surprising number of people who told me they've lurked for years, but never commented. And I realized that letting Dr. Professor Mike Adams splash a little evil on my shoes is a tiny price to pay for being part of a community like this.
Which brings me to Sheri.
Supermodel/Astronaut/Spy. Artists' conception.
Sheri is that best of all possible things: a saint with a sense of humor, a hybrid life-form composed of equal parts Mother Teresa and Eve Arden, who's been making me laugh for going on twenty years, while spending most of her time caring for the least of us -- both the two- and the four-legged kind.
Her town didn't have a shelter -- stray animals were summarily killed -- so she began to take in those who weren't immediately adoptable -- the sick, the injured, the...behaviorally idiosyncratic, shall we say? -- and nurse and care for them until homes could be found. But now the city has passed an ordnance limiting the number of cats per home to three. So rather than let the others starve in a ditch, get hit by a car, or die of exposure, Sheri spent nearly everything she had to buy a trailer outside the city limits where the Unadopted can live temporarily while she searches for a permanent shelter before the weather turns cold.
(And despite all but emptying her bank account to make sure her rescue animals weren't abandoned to the elements, she was still the first person to donate money for Riley. See what I mean about the saint thing? If I had influence with the Pope and a contact in the Chinese-based hot injection molding industry, I'd be casting dashboard-ready figurines of her as we speak.)
Several readers who missed our original plea wrote to ask me if we still needed help. Fortunately, the vet is all paid off, so we're okay. But if you have a few bucks to spare, please consider making a donation in Riley's memory to Sheri's animal aid society, Four Paws Rescue. It's a regular tax deductible, non-profit, and there's a Pay de Pal button on the top right of their web page. Or you can send a check to this address:
Four Paws Rescue
P.O. Box 422
Millville, UT 84326
Thank you. And please join me in wishing Sheri a happy birthday (so far it's been kind of a crappy one, at least it was when I spoke to her earlier today, but if we all just wish hard enough, maybe we can change that. Or at least resurrect a dead fairy.)
And of course...
Sexy Birthday Lizard!