The garden is doing well. The purple salvia is covered with fat, happy bees, and I caught a hummingbird on the red salvia the other day. (I can see why people start collecting salvias–I suspect that when I do the backyard, I may set up an all-salvia bed. They’re such cheerful, attactive, sturdy little plants.) The yarrow is blooming, as is the gaura and swamp milkweed, and this other thing I put in that I’ve forgotten the name of and have to dig out the tag, but which appears to be some kind of native veronica. (The plain ‘ol veronica is not terribly happy. I’m hoping they perk up in fall, because they’re not doing well.) There are buds on the coreopsis and the butterfly bush is on the thin edge of flowering. Life is generally good.

Indoors, Shrimp Bob has been in the tank for about three days now. I have spotted him once. He’s not a terribly visible critter, which is impressive, granted that he’s the biggest thing in the tank and has a fan of antennae nearly as big as my palm. However, the biggest of the Pest Bobs has vanished, and while it’s too early to know if it’s just hiding and traumatized, it seems like a good sign. (I’ve got my eye on the other Pest Bobs…) Crab Bob has definitely learned that the Chopstick From Heaven bears food, and now waves wildly whenever it pokes a flake of food in his direction. 

Book 4 & 5 are go–we’re finishing up the schedule negotiations. But it appears I have work for another year, which is good, because the economic slow-down is still killin’ art sales–I’m doing less than half the volume I did this time last year, and that’s actually up from the months before! I’m curious as to how the cons coming up this month are going to do–Heroes was awful last year, because of the gas prices, and I’m wondering if it’ll be equally bad this year, or if the lowered gas prices will have an impact. (If it doesn’t improve, I’m probably not doing it again, I fear.) Anthrocon is usually my best and biggest con, and it held up well last year, so we’ll see.

There is a lizard with no tail loose in the house.

I am unsure how this is going to play out. I screamed like a little girl when I saw it, despite a fondness for lizards, because without the tail and at the speed it moved, my brain immediately jumped to GIANT CENTIPEDE OF DEATH. Once I picked myself up from across the room, I investigated (the only thing worse than GIANT CENTIPEDE OF DEATH is GIANT HIDDEN CENTIPEDE OF DEATH, which could be anywhere, plotting anything, climbing into my purse, hiding among in my tampons, calling invertebrate phone sex lines on my cel phone, anything.) and saw that it was in fact SMALL LIZARD OF TAILLESSNESS, which is another matter entirely.

Living with a multiplicity of cats, it becomes a race between the human errand of mercy and the feline errand of "oh look, wiggly thing that jumps when I poke it!" This race will probably end with the lizard being deposited proudly, and not yet dead, on my pillow, whereupon I will roll over, blink groggily, attempt to focus my eyes, see GIANT CENTIPEDE OF DEATH again and have to be talked down from the light-fixture.

Meanwhile, a new EMG-Zine is up, with a new Wombat Droppings that including a step-by-step walkthrough on my technique for those mixed digital-traditional pieces I’ve been playing with recently, since people kept asking and I got tired of writing e-mails.

As the entire world probably knows by now, given the internets are aflame with it, one of the few late-term abortion providers in the US was shot to death in church yesterday.

It’s the wrong time of month for this sort of news to hit, so I am very angry. I would be angry anyway, but my rationality is jacked down several critical notches, to the point where I can, for a few seconds, wish for poetic justice on the sort of people who condone this kind of behavior, even in their heart of hearts. Unfortunately, since poetic justice in this case would necessarily involve discovering that a much anticipated pregnancy had resulted in a fetus with no brain or fatal conjoining or a beloved wife going into fatal kidney failure or one of the other rare and terrible things that can go wrong, which frankly nobody on earth deserves, wishing such things, even briefly, is quite horrible and a failure of compassion, and so I begin to feel guilty for it almost immediately.

I could rail, but plenty of people are railing. I will link, instead, to an agonizing but important article about late-term abortion by the only sort of person who can speak with authority on it–a woman who needed one. (I suggest reading this article if you think you’re against late-term abortion categorically, or have some deluded talk-show notion that women just are wandering into a clinic in the second trimester and go "Man, this pregnancy thing is crampin’ my style." The truth is a lot different, and a lot more painful. Bring a Kleenex.)

It would be nice, because I am angry, to dismiss Christians in general for this sort of thing, since the people doing this almost always claim to be Christians doing the Lord’s work. But that would also be wrong. There are plenty of Christians who are pro-choice, and plenty more who at least aren’t hypocrites and realize that killing in the name of life is absurd.

Plus, Kevin gets much more worked up about Christians doing this shit than I do, as one himself, so I’ll leave that sort of thing to him. All I can say is that a god who would inflict such suffering on a woman like the one in the article, and then turn around and condemn her for trying to prevent the horrific suffering her child would endure, is not a god worth worshipping. It’s not a god many of my Christian friends would recognize.

It’s probably no wonder that followers of a god like that are batshit insane and shoot people.

Well. Being angry only achieves so much. There’s a lot to be said for action. I think that the best tribute–and because I have PMS, also the thing most likely to infuriate the sort of people who secretly applaud the shooting of abortion doctors while claiming to be outraged–is to continue to support the fight.

Donate to Planned Parenthood

Donate to Medical Students for Choice  (I know a lot of people have reseverations about PP’s methodology, so let me suggest this as an alternative.) 

ETA: Okay, gang, I hate to do this, but we’ve gotten entirely too vitriolic in the comments–I haven’t been checking in on the threads (shame on me) and it appears to have gotten waaaay outta hand. So I’m closing comments on this post, much as I hate to do it, because I don’t think there’s any chance of getting to a civil resolution any more. Thanks to everybody who’s commented and been courteous so far–you’re much appreciated.