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January 31, 2004

New Blog Showcase

Chandrasutra is running again, having lost the last time. I'm voting again for her post "You're Soaking In It."

Posted on January 31, 2004 at 06:17 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)

Too Funny For Words

Google is suing.

It's obvious why. The site claims to be a parody, but it is an actual search engine. It works.

I'll keep you abreast of updates. [Pun intended.]


Posted on January 31, 2004 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

January 30, 2004

Friday Cat Blogging - Part II

Update: The cat won. A jury has ruled that Espinoza's rights had not been violated. Jurors also found that the city did not prevent his dog from doing its job. Espinoza plans to appeal. He made some more eye-opening comments: "I am disappointed; I am not surprised," said Espinosa, who represented himself during the trial, about the decision. "After that first juror [in jury selection] said the word 'frivolous,' and so did the next five, I thought the whole panel should have been thrown out. I truly think the well got poisoned right there."


I was going to include this with my regular Friday Cat Blogging but the post became so big that I decided to give it its own space.

I think the guy in question here is just looking for an excuse to sue the city of Escondido.

A disabled man tearfully described a library cat's attack on his assistance dog. Rik Espinosa uses the dog because he has disabilities that include major depressive and panic disorders. The cat, named L. C. for "Library Cat," has been a fixture at the library for the past eight years. The animals fought, and L. C. scratched the dog on its snout. Espinosa claims to have suffered "significant lasting, extreme and severe mental anguish and emotional distress including, but not limited to, terror, humiliation, shame, embarrassment, mortification, chagrin, depression, panic, anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares, loss of sleep..."

He is suing for $1.5 million.

His actual damages (lost wages, trips to the vet and his own doctor) amounted to about $325.00.

The city offered him two settlements, one for $1,500, but he has refused.

At issue is "whether Espinosa had the same right to enter and use the library as anyone else, whether the city denied his right to have his assistance dog with him, and whether the city interfered with his admittance to and enjoyment of the library." Escondido City Attorney Steven Nelson said that "the city does not dispute that Espinosa has disabilities, that his dog helps him with his disabilities or that the cat scratched the dog." He says that "[t]he key issue for us is we don't think that the cat scratching the dog is disability discrimination. The cat didn't prevent his access, it delayed his access."

The cat was taken home by a library employee six months later after he attacked another animal. He died in October. I understand why he attacked -- he was protecting his turf. The library has a dog alert system in place.

The city has ordered that the library not discuss the case. Its web site about L. C. has been taken down, but the Wayback Machine has archived the links. Here is a good one from 2000: L. C.'s FAQ Just plug the library's old L. C. page URL (http://www.ci.escondido.ca.us/library/libinfo/lc.htm) into the Wayback Machine to see more pages about L. C. The Wayback Machine archives web sites and pages that are no longer available on the WWW. You must have the original URL to be able to use Wayback.

I guess it's obvious at this point that I'm siding with the cat.

Library cats are not unheard of. I live in a small town. We don't have a library cat, but the owners of many of the local tourist shops let their dogs and cats hang around the stores. One of the garden nurseries has two cats. One is Checkout Counter Fungus. Nothing entices that cat to move. I have never seen anyone have a problem with the animals. L. C. seemed to have been very territorial, and he was protecting his turf.

The judge in the case has ordered it to proceed. Espinosa's response made me wonder about his motives: "Here I am, a guy without a college education, and I've whipped this deep-pocket government," he said. "I've out-lawyered the lawyers. That means this case is pure."

Posted on January 30, 2004 at 08:40 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Friday Cat Blogging

I have been lax in my Friday Cat Blogging since 2004 started. Not anymore.

  • Cat saves man from fire.

  • My friend's cat Feakin may not be as ferocious as the other cats at My Cat Hates You, but those "Village of the Damned" eyes are enough to freak out anyone. (Scroll down her blog and check out the kitten snoozing on the radiator. LOL)

  • Hospital superbug MRSA found in some pets in Britain, including cats.

  • Head on over to the Wichita Cat Fancy Show this weekend! I love cat shows. I buy all kinds of kitty gack for the cats and for us. Plus there's the free cat food...

    And finally, here is most of the gang during their afternoon nap. Domino is to the left. Beowulf is to the right. A yawning Lucky brings up the rear. For the Uru fans out there, you can see my Riven hunting sickle and my Moeity knife in the background. The sickle is on the wall. The knife is propped up against a flower pot.


    Posted on January 30, 2004 at 08:28 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

    I Don't Think This Is What Tammy Wynette Had In Mind

    "A Davenport man on trial for three charges of indecent exposure tried to defend himself by having his wife testify that he is not well-endowed enough for a female postal worker to have seen his penis from 35 feet away. [...] His wife, Sheila Neece, told the jury that, from a physical standpoint, her husband is not very well-endowed and simply could not have been seen from that distance. The couple’s children were in the courtroom when she testified."

    Posted on January 30, 2004 at 07:32 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

    January 29, 2004

    Think You've Had A Bad Day?


    The decomposing remains of a 60-ton sperm whale exploded on a busy Taiwan street, showering nearby cars and shops with blood and organs and stopping traffic for hours, local newspapers said.

    (Anybody got a straw?)

    Posted on January 29, 2004 at 04:06 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

    I Am Speechless

    Just in from Florida: Prosecutors are asking that a judge presiding over a rape case be removed because he said this about the victim:

    "Why would he want to rape her? She doesn't look like a day at the beach."

    How many other rape cases has this asshole presided over?

    Posted on January 29, 2004 at 02:56 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

    January 28, 2004

    Banging Head On Keyboard

    I can't take this anymore.

    From Bush's speech with the nation's mayors at winter meeting [bold my emphasis]:

    I laid out the other night a jobs for the 21st century program. A part of that is to make sure there's additional money to help junior high and high school students who have been just simply shuffled through the system. And that's what's happened, as you know. If you want to be blunt about what has taken place, sometimes when you don't measure, you just shuffle kids through. Then you wake up at the high school level and find out that the illiteracy level of our children are appalling. I expect you, as mayors, to challenge the soft bigotry of low expectations. I challenge you to keep raising that bar and standards. (Applause.)

    He got into Yale????

    Clinging fast to Daddee's coattails, that's for sure.

    Posted on January 28, 2004 at 11:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (12)

    Spank Me

    Now that I have your attention...

    I have waited far too long before adding Leigh Anne's fine blog, One Good Thing to my blog roll. She's there now. I wish I could get this blogroll in alpha order but that isn't an option yet.

    By the way, her blog is going to be covered in the Chicago Tribune. I spoke to the reporter on Monday. I'll post a link when the article is online.

    If I ever find a reason to travel to Chicago, I'll definitely drop in her shop and blow a wad of dough. I bet I'll spend more than I spend at that comic book shop in Salem. I've been good lately, too. Trying to spend less than $100 per visit...

    You don't know what kind of shop she has? Visit her blog and find out! (heh heh heh)

    Posted on January 28, 2004 at 08:06 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

    New Additions to the Blog Roll

    These are new blogs, and they have been added to my blog roll.

    A friend of mine just started her own blog. I already defaced it with my cyber spray paint cans. She wrote the press release about Bush's "No Child Left Behind" garbage that I had posted a week or two ago.

    Ilia's Dreams and Iraq's War Blog have lots of political information, particularly about (obviously) Iraq. Alas, no comments sections yet.

    Posted on January 28, 2004 at 01:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)