All posts by drishism

About drishism

Love. Explore. Advocate. Rejoice. Note.

Is your dog’s health at risk? Read my surprising NYT story

Originally posted on Broadside:

By Caitlin Kelly

Dogs! Let's keep them safeDogs! Let’s keep them safe

Sometimes, as a journalist, I get to write a story I know is going to help a lot of people.

This is one.

I discovered the story when I recently read a friend’s status update on Facebook; their beloved terrier had almost died of heatstroke. Not, as everyone knows now, locked inside a car.

Out walking, or hiking, or running.

The world is hotter than ever; temperatures today in California are up to 105 Fahrenheit.

And our dogs want to keep us happy — they won’t stop running, even panting so hard they might burst — until they’re in very rough condition. By then it can be too late, and they’re already in organ failure, sometimes soon to die.

Dogs are dying of heatstroke. The symptoms are easy to miss.

Please make time to read my story and tweet/reblog this one.


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Working on Two novels at the Same Time … A Writer’s Journey

I am in the unfortunate position of working on two novels at the same time. I say unfortunate because this presents some risks.

The first risk is becoming a hack, meaning that I am writing two novels that have the same feeling… pace… plot twists, dialogue… characters, etc. This is similar to observations about Adam Sandler.  You are never seeing him as a new character… but you are seeing Sandler in a new situation. If I write two novels at the same time, they have the risk of feeling very much the same. Because I am aware of this, I think the characters and the pacing are different… the voice is different. But who knows. It might be hackish… using the same typecast characters over, and over, and over again…

Another risk is that I get lost working on both, and finish neither one. Although I don’t think that will happen, it is possible that one of the books does not get finished. Because I am working on two books, I might lose some of the “steam” required to finish both… become bored with one… and abandon it to some abyss of lost fiction characters.

That is a sad place for fictional characters to go… a lost space of forgotten characters. I suppose that’s what the Twilight Zone is for.

Writing is still fun… the characters still intrigue me… their problems are still fun puzzles… and making their lives miserable is still a joy (for me). But how many books is too many to work on at one time? At what point will it become a dizzying mess of words?


Top 5 Female Action-Heroes (movies)

With Terminator Genisys (2015) coming out soon, my first thought was “why” are we getting another Terminator movie? It’s not that I didn’t enjoy the first two movies, but I am somewhat critical of all timeline story angles. Stories that involve altering timelines are always problematic because of temporal paradoxes.

However, the release of Terminator also reminded me of Sarah Connor. Clearly Sarah Connor is an amazing action-hero, and one of the few really good female action-heroes. Sarah Connor is one of the women I think about whenever I try to create women action-heroes.

So, that got me pondering. Who are the greatest female action-heroes of all time? I tried to limit it to live-action origin, or first visual was in a live-action film. This eliminates cartoons, video games, and comic books. With that said, let me give a nod to Wonder-Woman… without a doubt the greatest fictional female hero of all time. In addition, Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft is perfection. However… the Lara Croft films, which had video game origins, needed better writers and better directors.

Below are my top 5 female action heroes, but feel free to add others in the comments.

5.) Katniss Everdeen, The Hunger Games trilogy

She came from District 12, a poor coal mining district, and survived the very dangerous and very political Hunger Games… a televised fight to the death.

4.) Trinity, The Matrix trilogy

In a world dominated by machines, Trinity is one of the top soldiers in humanity’s fight against the machines. She is clearly a soldier who shoes little fear in the face of overwhelming odds.

3.) Sarah Connor, The Terminator series

She fought the T100 and the T1000 when the life of her son was put in jeopardy by the time-traveling assassins. Instead of running away, she ran toward the danger to save her son… and to save the future of humanity. Probably the most noble of all the women on this list… and her action sequences were believable.

2.) The Bride, Kill Bill Volume 1 and 2

The Bride is rated higher than Sarah Connor because she did action-scenes, and combat, in a way equal to the greatest male action-heroes. Sarah Connor may have done action that was more believable… but let’s be honest, the greatest male action-heroes do lots of stuff which pushes our ability to suspend disbelief. On this list it is quite a feat to rate higher than an action icon like Sarah Connor.

Jumping, slicing, and fighting her way until she finally finds Bill… The Bride is a powerful action-heroine.

1.) Ellen Ripley, The Alien Series

I base this on Alien and Aliens, the first two movies of the Aliens franchise which were both really good. The acid bleeding aliens killed Ripley’s friends, and the aliens killed the Marines… but Ripley killed the aliens. The thing that separates Ripley and Sarah Connor from the Bride, is that Sarah Connor and Ripley feel iconic… whereas the Bride just doesn’t feel iconic to me.

So that’s my list. The top three were separated by tiny details, and on another day the top three might be in a different order. So what are your thoughts?

The Words Every Adoptive Mom Longs to Hear…

Originally posted on Raising 5 Kids With Disabilities and Remaining Sane Blog:


Like most other adoptive parents, I adopted children because I, selfishly, wanted children. (My theory was if I had children to care for, I really didn’t have a lot of extra time to clean the house. I would rather care for a child than mop the floor…) An adoptive parent should never think their child who is adopted is beholden to them. The child didn’t choose to be born into their circumstances, and they certainly didn’t ask to be adopted. And I have had more than my share of emotionally unstable children, (aren’t all teenagers unstable anyway?) and never expected them to be happy about my choice to adopt them, (or at least not to express that feeling.)

But I was wrong. I went to Marie’s award ceremony at school today. Most parents didn’t go, it was during the day and I’m sure it was hard for them to get…

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Aging Is Not For Sissies

Originally posted on livenowandzen:

Celebrating 47 years I recently had the good fortune of marking 47 years off the calendar. After so many journeys around the sun, I’ve become much more adept at celebrating in a way that suits me. This year that included a hot, uninterrupted shower, a venti latte accompanied by a cinnamon roll, some light shopping followed by a leisurely drive into the hills, a pedicure, and a picnic and concert at Red Rocks. And while I could not keep Mother Nature in line (the cranky bitch caused a thirty-minute storm with extreme lightning and heavy rain that delayed our outdoor concert and forced us to seek shelter in our car), overall my day was damn near perfect, securing my position as my number one, all-time-favorite, personal birthday-party planner.

The 1980s sex symbol, Bo Derek, recently said in an interview that aging is not for sissies.Although Bo has about…

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