My First Day at the ASPCA!

Today is my first day so I won’t have anything to say about it until tomorrow. For now, pictures of life in the big city! Every year there’s a big pillow fight downtown. It was more dramatic looking when they used feather pillows and the feathers went flying, but since I’m anti-cruelty products I’m glad they don’t use feather pillows anymore. But here are a couple of pictures I took at the 2007 fight, when they were still using feather pillows.

Most of the fight was going on in one big mass of people, but there was also this ring fight off to the side, where people would go up against each other one on one.

Washington Square Pillow Fight

A little dog wanted to get into the act. Go easy on him little doggie.

Washington Square Pillow Fight

The best was the crowd reactions.

Washington Square Pillow Fight

Percy: The Best Dog

Nine years ago Catherine Logan rescued a dog. “I found Percy and her sister on the side of a highway on my way home from work around Christmas of 2008. They were both obviously in shock and couldn’t move much, but Percy was very close to oncoming cars, which weren’t slowing down.”

Percy’s sister didn’t make it, but Percy did, although it was a long, hard road. I’m afraid this is going to turn into a “you had to be there” thing, but Catherine posted online the whole time, and we all followed along and fell in love with Percy (and with Catherine for all she did.) There was surgery, MRSA, oh God, that was terrifying, then trying out one splint after another for her legs, to find one that worked and was reasonably comfortable. I always afraid when I started reading a new post because I couldn’t bear it if it was bad news. Then a bunch of feral kittens showed up and Percy fell in love. (And Catherine took them in.)

Catherine posted videos of her progress and between her posts and the videos of this sweet, sweet dog, dealing with all she had to deal with, I became completely attached to a dog I’d never met. We were there, watching Percy find happiness with Catherine (and family), and the kittens, and the other dogs. So when Catherine posted that she had died and that an atomic bomb had gone off in her chest I knew she wasn’t exaggerating how much it hurt.

Oh Percy. I just re-watched a bunch of your videos. Rest in peace sweetest girl in the world. I wish you could have lived forever.

Thank you Catherine for saving Percy and bringing her into all our lives. I’m so sorry for your loss (and our loss). Percy is officially the best dog ever (tied with all the other best dogs ever, like Ty), and we’re all going to miss her.

In this first video it seems like Percy was free of splints, but she had to wear one for the rest of her life, I believe (although Catherine gave her breaks from it). I could be wrong about that though!

The next one is of Percy and one of the feral kittens.

Here is one of the videos of Percy trying out splints.

I’m including this one because it has Chester, another rescue of Catherine’s!

Help Fund SÉANCE: Spiritualist Ritual and the Search for Ectoplasm

Photographer Shannon Taggert has started a campaign to fund a book of photographs she’s taken of seances over the past sixteen years. You will see how gorgeous these photographs are when you go to her campaign page and watch the brief video about the project. I’m in!!

From Shannon: “I first became aware of Spiritualism as a teenager, after my cousin received a reading from a medium who revealed a secret about my grandfather’s death that proved to be true. Since then, I have been deeply curious about how someone could know such a thing.

“In 2001, I began photographing at the place where my grandfather’s message was received: Lily Dale, New York, the town which is home to the world’s largest Spiritualist community. I quickly immersed myself in Lily Dale’s world – I received readings, experienced healings, joined in séances, attended a psychic college and sat in a medium’s cabinet, always with my camera. I expected to spend one summer figuring out the tricks of the Spiritualist trade. Instead, Spiritualism’s mysterious processes, earnest practitioners, surprising cultural history and bizarre photographic past became a resource and an inspiration for my own body of work. I began a sixteen-year quest to document contemporary Spiritualism and to find and photograph ‘ectoplasm’ – the elusive substance that is said to be both spiritual and material.”

Shannon Taggert