Friday, June 19, 2015


It's been another very tough week, particularly with the horrific news coming out of Charleston. I considered not doing the post today, it feels a bit...inappropriate isn't the right word, but it feels strange to even consider these silly puff pieces having any impact on emotions after such an important, devastating, and seemingly never-ending event such as the one in Charleston. But thanks to a brief discussion with a pal, I was reminded that this post was never intended to push those issues to the side, to make light of them, or make us forget. So, while our thoughts are with those who lost their lives, their families, and their community, I suppose it can't hurt to let in a little light. I hope you all have peaceful weekends. (And thank you, Boo.)

Exhibit A:  I admit I scoffed at 3D printing when I first heard about it. I scoffed even more when the first thing people tried to use it for was guns. Just what we need, print-at-home weapons (NOTE: This item was written earlier this week. I considered changing it, but my feelings remain the same. Whether via 3D printer or birthday gift, we have too many guns too easily obtained.). I have, however, been coming around to the idea after several great news articles of which this item is one. The Museo del Prado museum in Madrid has launched an exhibit of 3D paintings so visually impaired patrons can get a hands-on experience with the art. Six of the museum's finest pieces are in the exhibit. (hat tip to Twisted Sifter for the story and link)

Exhibit B:  This picture. It requires no introduction or explanation. I don't even know where it came from or which crazy mind to thank. Just enjoy the glory:

Exhibit C: We've maybe had too many of these stories, but then again can we really? Another dog-helps-child-in-need tale, this time about a little boy named Caleb who was badly injured in a head-on collision. He was non-responsive and treatment wasn't helping; his family was losing hope. Enter Colonel, a special working dog brought in to help Caleb recover. Colonel's presence sparked Caleb's interest and he finally started responding to therapy. He's now walking and talking and doing great.

Exhibit D:  This item about a super cool cat sanctuary and rescue was sent to me by Elizabeth and now I want to go visit. The Cat House on the Kings is a 12-acre sanctuary that's really a paradise for cats being rescued. It's no-kill and no-cage, allowing the cats to wander the grounds and home at will. Cat House has been open more than 23 years and has successfully saved more than 23,000 cats and 7,000 dogs. Jess Lessard is a great photographer who spends her free time every week helping out, which includes taking pictures of the animals to spread awareness about the sanctuary and the 700 cats currently available for adoption (This helps adoption rates tremendously, by the way; there's no substitute for a good picture to spark interest). Check out this great place and the beautiful cats available (go to the link, cat lovers, below is only a brief offering of the photographic goodness on the full site):

Exhibit E: Because my pals know this next item would appeal to my Australian side as well as my softy side, both Bev and Steph sent it my way. It's about The Man With The Golden Arm, aka James Harrison. Long story short, James was very sick when he was young and had to receive blood transfusions. He knew at a young age he wanted to give back: "'I was always looking forward to donating, right from the operation, because I don't know how many people it took to save my life,' he says. 'I never met them, didn't know them.' So when he turned 18, Harrison started giving blood and plasma regularly — every three weeks or so for 11 years."

At the same time, doctors were struggling with a condition called Rh Incompatibility, when an Rh-negative mother is pregnant with an Rh-positive baby. In some cases, this potentially fatal condition causes the mother's red blood cells to attack the baby's. Turns out, Harrison's blood contains a rare antibody known as Rh (D) immune globulin or anti-D that can turn off that potentially fatal reaction.

This long story isn't becoming short, is it? Bare with me. Harrison became the first anti-D donor in Australian history and since he has been donating regularly for over 60 years, they estimate he's potentially saved over 2 million babies, including his own grandson. He's now in the Guinness Book of World Records and if I ever meet him, I will BUY him a Guinness.

Exhibit F:  I saw my friend Julie post this and stole it (thanks, Julie!) because it made me guffaw. Mark Gubin lives near the airport, so he painted a message on his roof, plain to see by passengers on incoming planes. It reads "Welcome to Cleveland!" Why is that funny? Gubin lives in Wisconsin. Why did he do it? "To mess with people mostly." I have to say this is sheer evil genius.

Exhibit G: Talk about your G is for goat vines, this is an entire goat vineyard. Posted locally by sfist, the below video shows the goats from the Lawrence Berkeley Lab goat program moving from one grazing location to another. The goats are used to decrease the fire risk posed by dry grass on the hillsides.

Goats Gone Wild at Berkeley Lab
Goats gone wild!We utilize goats at the lab in order to keep our grasses short and reduce fire hazards. In this video the goats are being herded (wait for dog at end) to the tree laden hill just below our Blackberry Gate.Video: David Stein, Berkeley Lab employeeGoats: Goats R Us Company
Posted by Berkeley Lab on Friday, June 12, 2015


I shared this picture of my nephew on vacation on social media, so many of you have perhaps seen it already, but in the infamous words of Bill Murray's Trip, "It just doesn't matter!" and I'm sharing it again. Because, well, just look at it:

The kid is too cool. Can't wait to see him next month.

Bird had her second Tricks class this week. Still doing well, kicking ass on the podium, hoop, double-tap shake (which will be turned into a wave) and the other core work, but the bow is a bit tougher hoe. It's a natural trick for many dogs, because most stretch in that position. Bird does not. We found an ingenious way to get her into the pose, we'll see if it sticks (i.e., if she cares.)

Today is going to be kind of fun, our trainer asked for Bird's help in dealing with one of her private clients. I guess the dog is a bit unruly and leash reactive, so B's zen is going to be put to the test. We're meeting out in the 'hood at high noon. Should be interesting.

It was hot earlier in the week, so we had a wallow in the lagoon. I love taking pictures of wet dogs shaking, you never know what you're going to get. Nothing too spectacular this time around, but still fun.

And finally, I leave you with these words of wisdom, sent to me by my sister. Our new life plan:


Emily said...

I think you're right - we need this post more than ever during rough weeks. Thanks for sharing this positivity. I love the Nicolas Cage photo, and your nephew is my new role model - that is some A+ level life living, I love it.

Malcolm Avenue Review said...

Thanks, Emily, it helps to hear that. I've had that photo of Nic Cage just sitting on my desktop and keep forgetting about it. This seemed a perfect week to remember it. And oh, the nephew. That is the life, isn't it? Beach, recliner, face covered in chocolate. Nirvana. He's a really fun and funny kid, thankfully.

Pop Culture Nerd said...

I think the Nic-Cage-pics-in-hotel-room trend was started by the woman in this story because it was the first I'd read of someone doing it. Since then, others have made similar requests at different hotels. It's still hilarious.

Malcolm Avenue Review said...

Thank you for finding/sharing that, what a hilarious story. Though I have to say I was a bit surprised she actually expressed her disappointment at no second picture. Good on the Indigo staff for playing along. This is why I don't work in hospitality. :)

Marisa @The Daily Dosage said...

Con Air Nic Cage is pretty funny! I don't have much of a bucket list but that cat sanctuary is going on mine! In fact, I want one! Posts like this are always needed. More light, less dark! :)

Julianne - Outlandish Lit said...

Thank you for posting this as usual! It's another great one. And the note in regards to Charleston is lovely. The Nic Cage photo is perfect.

Malcolm Avenue Review said...

Thanks for stopping by, J. A friend passed along what might be the back story to that Nic Cage photo and it's as epic as you might imagine. Might put it in next week's post.

Malcolm Avenue Review said...

Doesn't that place look fantastic? Heck, I want to live there. I am certainly going to stock up on allergy meds and go for a visit. And those are great things to have on a bucket list. Doable and non-life-threatening. :)

About Malcolm Avenue Review

I was lucky enough to be born and raised in a nifty, oak-shaded ranch house on Malcolm Avenue, a wide-laned residential street with little through traffic, located amid the foothills of Northern California. It was on that street and in that house I learned most of my adolescent life lessons, and many grown-up ones to boot. Malcolm Avenue was "home" for more than thirty years.

It was on Malcolm Avenue, through and with my family and the other families that made up our neighborhood of characters, that I first learned about and gained an appreciation for the things I continue to love the most to this day: music, animals, photography, sports, television/movies and, of course, books.

I owe a debt of gratitude to that life on Malcolm Avenue. It gave me a sense of community and friendship, support and adventure. For better and worse, life on that street likely had the biggest impact on the person I've become. So this blog, and the things I write here, are all, at their base level, a little bit of a love letter to Malcolm Avenue.


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