March 5, 2014 at 8:55 am | Posted in Animals, Family, Mind | 4 Comments
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The puppy as a child.

The puppy as a child.

If childless, you should have more success than most deriving faux-parenting experiences from non-infants.

This will likely be due to your vivid imagination and strong ability to anthropomorphize.

The flip side of ‘making do’ with substitute offspring is that when your pet does die, your heart will shatter with grief.

Yet it’ll probably be worth it.

If you found this content useful or entertaining, you may wish to:

Even a buck or three will keep me in the hunt. With many thanks, Paul.



January 19, 2013 at 10:17 am | Posted in 1, Animals, Mind, People, Sight, Society | 6 Comments
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P1020511 Plane Truth Small

When conversing, keep your feet on the ground.

In certain conditions, your (usually unloved) penchant for penetrating questions may find favour in the world.

For instance, if you land in a regional airport and are confronted by a sniffer dog, there’s a good chance your fellow travellers will hurry past its handler.

You, of course, will be entranced by the beast.

If its handler feels bored, jaded, undervalued or just plain lonely amid careless crowds, you might just make her day.

Start small, by asking what her dog is trained to detect.

Then ask how long training takes.

Express amazement that the pooch can master so much in just 10-12 weeks.

Bookend your interview by asking (roughly) how long the dog’s career will last.

Then ask if, after a decade or so, the handler will have the option to keep the dog.

Observe her interaction with the animal.

If she loves it, even you should be able to perceive this.

The dog, unused to his handler receiving such attention, will fix you with a stare that penetrates far better than the X-ray machine behind you.

This is OK, because you have nothing to hide.

And, unlike humans, dogs and horses have no agenda.

So, for once, you can enjoy staring right back.

And then it’s time to leave.

Under NO circumstances should you go on to ask questions like:

  • When do you think your dog will die?
  • How will you feel when your dog dies?
  • How long will it take you to grieve?
  • Will you get another dog?
  • Will it feel the same?
  • What if it doesn’t?

While you may find these questions perfectly reasonable, most ‘normal’ people will NOT.

By breaking off an interview – even when you’re having fun – you stop it going bad.

Easier said than done, perhaps; but you can learn that less really is



Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


February 6, 2010 at 8:53 am | Posted in Animals, Benefits, Interests, Nature, Senses, Sight | Leave a comment
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100% potential. A clean slate. Nothing wrong.

Life is messy, complicated and riddled with painful errors (and fear thereof).

You may therefore feel drawn to ‘new’ things.

Scenes and objects uncorrupted and yet to fail.

Seedlings. Sunrises. New books. Untrodden beaches. Freshly painted rooms. Unmade plastic models.

That sort of thing.

Nature, of course, is always renewing.

Observing the split of a daffodil bud.

Or the moment a puppy first opens her eyes.

Will very likely thrill you to the core.

So turn off the TV.

Leave your room.

And get amongst it!

While others hurry past, you stand in awe as the cosmos displays in microcosm.


January 15, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Posted in Animals, Benefits, Nature, People, Senses, Sight | 1 Comment
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Can you see the fresh green scratch?

It’s nice to watch possums scrabble among eucalypts at night.

By day, it’s satisfying to trace the oh-so-faint ‘paths’ their furry bodies smooth onto the bark.

Closer up, it’s even more satisfying to detect claw marks.

Best of all is to spot the one tiny mark that’s green.

For that mark was made just last night.

By a possum that’s probably watching you right now.

And only you and a very few others have the power to notice such things. 🙂


January 7, 2010 at 7:35 pm | Posted in 1, Animals, Compulsions, Mind, Sight | 2 Comments
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This brand is easy.
Others are much, much harder to calculate.

If you have two dogs of the same breed, you may feel irresistibly compelled to feed them identically.

And I mean identically.

This isn’t so hard with the type of dog food pictured above.

But God help you if your partner buys granular dogfood – and you either have to count the tiny fragments or weigh the bowls.

The dogs don’t give a damn about these taxing mental machinations.

Nor should you.

But sometimes, that’s the way the cookie crumbles.


Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


November 27, 2009 at 10:47 am | Posted in Animals, Compulsions, Hearing, Mind, Nature, Senses, Sight | 4 Comments
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Quite frightening, close up.

A single blow-fly can trigger a surprising variety of strong emotions.

If you see it struggling in a pool of water, you may feel compassion and rescue it with a stick.

If it follows you inside, you may feel agitation that your home and concentration have been compromised.

If your concerted efforts to oust it without harming it fail, you may feel frustration.

If you spray it with poison, your brief flutter of satisfaction may turn to sorrow as it starts to die.

If it takes a long time to die, in paroxysms of agony, writhing and reaching for life with its every appendage grossly extended, you may feel remorse.

If you put it out of its misery by crushing it between two sheets of paper, you may be shocked and surprised by the colour and quantity of its blood, brains and entrails.

If it leaves behind a clutch of wriggling baby maggots, your final emotion may be revulsion.

Is this just an Aspie thing, or does everyone experience such a cavalcade of emotions when dealing with a damn fly?!


Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


October 18, 2009 at 11:57 am | Posted in Animals, Benefits, Hearing, Interests, Mind, Nature, Recreation, Sight, Touch | Leave a comment
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Miffy in the Snow Small

Snow is very … cool.

You will like snow.

First, it acts like a remote control on the earth. Freezing motion and muting sound.

A forest under heavy snow on a calm, sunny day is a paragon of peace, order and stillness. The quietude will be like a balm on your so-often-hectic brain.

Any event that occurs on this backdrop will be super real. Like the girl in the red dress in The Matrix. Or the device advertising agencies use to colour the ‘hero’ product against a monochrome background.

If you’re lucky enough to see a bird hopping among the silent branches, you’ll delight in watching it at leisure while the rest of the world is stopped in time.

Second, snow is a mechanism for precisely translating movement into sound and energy into form.

When you step into a drift, the crunching snow records the speed and trajectory of your foot. And the imprint reveals exactly how much force you put into your step.

This is like seeing words as pictures, or (perhaps) numbers as forms.

It’s very satisfying and great fun.


Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


October 7, 2009 at 10:32 am | Posted in Animals, Compulsions, Mind, Sight, Society, Treatment | Leave a comment
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Chicken Coop by 5.5 Year Old. An Early Indicator of Asperger's?

Much has been written about the Aspie’s focus on detail, rather than the big picture.

The drawing above was done by a 5.5 year old Asperger sufferer.

Could the extreme attention to the chicken wire have been an early indicator of the syndrome?

I warmly welcome your views.


Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


August 15, 2009 at 2:37 pm | Posted in Animals, Benefits, Sight | Leave a comment
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Pic by Syymza.

As you struggle through the grocery shopping,

careening from aisle to illogically ordered aisle,

the sight of a sparrow,

soaring to the rafters from a split muesli box,

can give you three to five good minutes –

before the air runs out

and the walls rush in.

Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.


July 13, 2009 at 1:46 pm | Posted in Animals, Treatment | Leave a comment
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There is another way …

Pets all but eliminate your ability to self murder.

However much you hate yourself, you can’t betray your loyal companions by abandoning them to the vagaries of fate.

The more isolated you become by burning people, the greater your responsibility to your animals.

This is a useful (albeit pathetic) safety net.

The important thing is to delay.

The ‘permanent solution to a temporary problem’ cliche is invariably true.

Delay, just for a day, and tomorrow may just bring you peace.


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