Archive for November, 2010

Twenty-First Century Digital Fun (Revised)


November 30th, 2010 Posted 8:42 am

“Do you get the feeling we dodged a bullet yesterday?” says Spence.

“I actually think it winged me,” says Admin. “But just between the eyes, so no problem.”

Hey! Do those two dudes look tired or what? Like they’ve been worrying about something. I myself haven’t been worrying about anything, not in the slightest. I feel – let’s just admit it – tip top. I’m in a great mood, like anything is possible. Even playing with Iggy! I go to the window. There he is at his window. I wag. He wags. Iggy: my best pal.

“Here are some notes sent by Mike B.,” says Spence. “It looks like if you click on Friends of Chet and don’t see your picture anymore, then please resend when you get the chance. The little side display will automatically be showing different Friends. But comments accompanying the photos will no longer appear which is too bad. Bottom line, though, the site is now rugged enough for the digital world, circa the 2010’s.”

“Sorry,” says Admin. “I tuned out.”

From Mike B.

Commenting: Nothing has changed except that pages need to be broken at 100 comments for loading purposes. To get to the end just click the last page number available and post as usual. (Numbers are on the top and bottom of every block of 100 comments and highlighted by bright blue.)

Friends of Chet: please ask your readers to post their pictures there again. I will add the images I have but the comments that went along with the pics are not able to be translated.

Friends of Chet was originally built on the sites comment engine when WordPress was barely past version 2, which means it was hard coded into the system. As time went on that page grew too heavy and every page loaded there accounted for a massive surge on the server because it was 300+ comments and 300+ full sized images, in addition to 100’s of comments coming in on the other posts.

This divides the 2 and keeps the site speedy, and issue free with commenting. There is no way to have 2 commenting systems in one WordPress blog so there is no way to translate those comments into this new gallery. This makes the images into thumbnails and splits pages at 30 thumbnails per page.

If you find many readers share a feeling about how the site should display the comments or you yourself have a better idea also taking page loads and the underlying architecture into consideration, please let me know and I know for a fact the friends of chet gallery will explode way past where it was. It was “stuck in the mud.”

“Here’s an idea,” says Admin. “What if when someone sends a photo to Friends, they send the comment to the regular comments section, saying they’ve just loaded a photo of Wolfie, say, and here’s some info about him?”

“Let’s put it out there,” says Spence.

Admin ducks. “Incoming!”

Note: It looks like captions or comments coming in with new photos will show up after all. This is from Mike B: “the captions or comments with the new pics will display under them in the gallery, they won’t be lost.”


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Posted in Chet The Dog

Too Much Of A Good Thing? Always! (Revised) (Again)


November 29th, 2010 Posted 7:37 am

“What is it about pecan pie?” Bernie says. Did he say that after last Thanksgiving? I have a vague memory of that. The truth is I have lots of vague memories, going all the way back to my puppyhood in the crack house. I also have lots of sharp memories, such as Peanut’s smell, for example. Peanut’s an elephant, now living in the great elephant sanctuary in Tennessee. She’s in To Fetch A Thief, or possibly Thereby Hangs A Tail.

Meanwhile Bernie steps on the scale. “Oh my God. That can’t be right.” He steps off, steps back on, gazes down at the display numbers. “How about we go for a run, big guy?”

See? Things have a way of working out for the best.

Please note: Technical changes at the blog may cause disruptions and weirdness today.

Note 2: PA and Spence are aware that there are problems, and have contacted Mike B. Everything will be sorted out. For example, once men walked on the moon.

Note 3: The comments from Chet the Dog below are from Mike B. Bernie says that me, the actual Chet, and he, meaning Bernie, are going for a long walk and will return when everything is normal.


Sundays With Ingrid (Dedicated To Sammie, In Memory)


November 28th, 2010 Posted 8:54 am

Were people at school looking at her funny? Ingrid couldn’t tell. Ms. Groome was looking at her funny for sure, but nothing new there.  “And now, class,” said Ms. Groome, “we’ve got just enough time for a quick pop quiz. Pass these around.”

Ms. Groome had a thing for pop quizzes. This one – with the heading Algebra Two Pop Quiz #46 – had seven questions, which should have been a good omen, but Ingrid knew better. She scanned the first one: Two rafts are floating down the Mississippi River. The first raft travels at a speed of …

Floating down the Mississippi River. That sounded pretty good right now. Ingrid had never seen the Mississippi River. Never even seen it, and yet she’d spent whole years of her life inside this school building, Ferrand Middle, where the air got so stuffy and overheated on winter afternoons like this. Nothing to be done about it – that was the way things were. But why? Did it have anything to do with those huge economic forces Dad sometimes talked about? Like surfers on a wave – we can change our own direction a little bit but we can’t change the wave.

In the margin of Pop Quiz #46 Ingrid started sketching a surfer on a wave. Where to begin? How about the surfer’s legs? Surfing must be all about balance, so maybe an angling calf line like so, and then another one, narrowing down to –

“Class. Pencils down. Pass your papers forward.”

Yikes. Ingrid whipped through the answer boxes, filling in numbers willy-nilly.

“I see that ‘pencils down’ doesn’t apply to you, Bruce. Mind telling the class what makes you so special?”

Everyone waited in anticipation. This was going to be good. Thank God for Brucie. Ingrid erased the beginnings of the surfer on her wave and passed in her quiz.

From Into the Dark.

Posted in Chet The Dog

Dedicated To Buford, In Memory


November 27th, 2010 Posted 9:37 am

Home is our place on Mesquite Road. Our part of the Valley isn’t fancy like Beaumont Hills, but who would want to live anywhere else? For one thing, we’ve got the canyon out back, open country that goes on and on, plus more lizards, javelinas and coyotes than you could shake a stick at. That’s something humans say, but I’ve gotten lots of sticks in my mouth and could have shaken them at all kinds of creatures if I’d wanted. Once I actually did shake a squirrel. Was that bad? I was so surprised I’d caught the little bugger, first and only time!

Another good thing about our place is that my bowls are in the kitchen. And then there’s Iggy. Iggy’s my pal. He lives next door with this old couple, Mr. and Mrs. Parsons. Not too long ago they got an electric fence and Iggy had some problems with it. Now he doesn’t come outside, just watches from the window, which was what he was doing when Bernie and I drove up. He barked and wagged his tail. I did the same. Iggy barked back and wagged some more. I did the same again. We could keep this up for ages, me and Iggy, and I was looking forward to that, when he suddenly disappeared from the front window. A few moments later he popped up in the side window. Maybe he could see me better from there or maybe – what was this? Now Iggy had something in his mouth, possibly a bedroom slipper. Yes, a bedroom slipper for sure. I wanted badly to take it away from him, but how could I? So when I heard Bernie saying, “For the last time, Chet, get in here,” I went bounding into the house.

From To Fetch A Thief.

Posted in Chet The Dog

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