Monday, January 31, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
We've got 4 dogs and two of them are dachshund cocker spaniel mixes (Photo and Pixel are their names). I have found at least six birds in the mouth of one or the other of these dogs over the past few months. Either they are killing them or they are good at finding dead birds. The birds have all been lesser gold finches and house finches as far as I can tell. They are pretty chewed up by the time I get to them. There was one Dark-eyed junco recently judging from the pink bill. A few minutes ago I found this tail in Pixel's mouth. I don't know what animal this tail came from.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Movie Review: Million Dollar Baby staring Hillary Swank, Directed by Clint Eastwood

I saw Million Dollar Baby. Let me tell you about it. There was a guy sitting next to me helping his date to understand the movie. For example when someone left the gym he said, “He’s leaving.” I’ll take this opportunity to list some of the things he said:
“He broke his heart.”
“He’s not coming back.”
“She’s good in this part.”
“She’s doing that wrong.”
“You have to develop a rhythm.”
“He’s going to show her.”
“She should be disqualified.”
“She’s good.”
“I can’t do that.”
“She’s really kicking her ass.”
“She’s tough.”
“She can’t do that.”
“Oh, that’s not right.”
“This is tragic.”
“That’s why his eye is cloudy.”
“He’s back.”
I hope his date found this helpful. I confess that I found it distracting, but I didn't say anything because he was helping his stupid date, I guess.


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
I came home from a night on the town (I went to the movies by myself) and found this bitch in my bed. I feel sorry for girl dogs having such a harsh name for their sex but I don't make the rules, I just follow them.
P.S. I slept on the floor.

Saturday, January 29, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
This is what a Red-naped sapsucker is doing to our almond tree. The holes that he drills in the bark fill with sap and she comes back later to drink the sap. For some unknown reason the sap does not harden as it would from an otherwise inflicted wound. Yellow-rumped warblers also drink from the sap wells.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Financial Advice

I've heard, on more than one occasion, that the first step to saving money is to pay off all debts (which reminds me of Steve Martin's advice on how to be a millionaire and never pay taxes, which is to first get a million dollars). The next thing to do is buy fewer lattes during the week. I have been doing the latter. I've been getting mochas instead. But the important part is to have someone else pay for them. That will help you to save money. So let’s say for the sake of a scenario that your family has a small cabin in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and everyone in the family loves it and want to keep it. Now let’s say that the cabin is on Forest Service land and every January a lease for the land must be paid. Of course you would want to pay part of the lease to help ensure the cabin stays in the family etc. My advice is to get someone to by your coffee or get someone to pay your share of the lease, which might be $250.00 if you are one of four kids responsible – for example.

Thursday, January 27, 2005


When I first decided to write about Robert in the blog I thought I should keep his identity secret. But when I tried to think of why, I could not think of a compelling reason. It’s no secret that he has dementia; nor should it be. And he should not be ignored because his brain does not work the way it used to. And I think it is interesting to see the way dementia manifests itself in Robert compared to others. I don’t have others to compare him with at the moment but most people know someone with Alzheimer’s or some other level of dementia (If you don’t now you probably will someday). So if part of you feels embarrassed for Robert when you see him wearing a basket on his head, you shouldn’t. He put the basket on and he was having a good time. I’m sure the fact that the man in the mirror also put a basket on his head made Robert feel even better about the idea.


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
While Robert was wearing the basket as a hat he said, "Look at this jaunty." And then he pantomimed walking in a jaunty manor, which he does quite well.

Robert at 9 AM Detail

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Here is a detail from the grid below.

Robert at 9 AM

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Here is Robert "flying" his hands into the hands of his friend, the guy in charge of the mirror machine. He was making airplane sounds while doing this.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
I feel great since I decided to take a yoga class. You should do it too; decide to take a yoga class. The class I decided to take starts February 22 which is the same day I leave for Chicago on my way to Germany. I may have to take a late March or early April class. I've been concentrating on my core for a couple days. That is, I've been concentrating on my core at some point during the day these past couple of days.

Robert and I went on a walk and we walked by a Cooper's hawk. It was low in a cottonwood branch about 15 feet from us. I tried to point it out to him. He laughed. I cannot tell if he noticed the bird. On the way back the hawk flew onto a neighbors fence to watch their bird feeder. Robert showed no interest in that either.

Monday, January 24, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Do you remember when I told you that I dog-sat for Edythe and Brooks and while walking their dog, Emma, she got hit by a car? Well maybe I never told you. I took her behind a school and let her off leash to run around and she started chasing crows. The crows led Emma toward the street, which was out of my sight. All I heard were tires screeching and a dog yelp and then barking. When I got to the street Emma was quietly sitting in the middle of the road. The driver of the car that hit her was apologizing and at the same time making sure I did not think it was his fault. I told him it was my fault as I walked Emma to the sidewalk. She seemed okay. I took her to Angel Memorial Animal Hospital where she was x-rayed and she really was okay. She looked pretty pathetic limping around the house, especially when she tried to climb the stairs. Happily, she never held a grudge. In fact she seemed to like me better after the experience. This is what she looked like the day of the accident.


I am planning to take a yoga class. The mission of the yoga place that I have chosen includes deepening “mind and spirit.” I am aspiritual. A condition so rare that my computer doesn’t even think aspiritual is a word. How will my lack of spirituality effect my yoga experience? In the past, when I’ve mentioned not being spiritual, the person that I mentioned it to has said, “yes you are.” It is unthinkable to some people. Maybe it is seen as being a little dead – and no one wants partially dead friends. You’ve probably heard people say, “I’m not religious but I’m spiritual.” Me, I’m not religious and I’m not spiritual. I am not an atheist either. My belief in the non-existence of God is more of a suspision than a belief. Atheism feels too much like a religion. I hope this lack of spirituality does not change my relationship with you.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Yesterday Donna and Jason told me about a blog they liked. I read some of it and liked it too so I posted a comment. Then I went back to read more of her blog and discovered that this gal is a white supremacist. But she’s a good writer. And I am not sure she is a white supremacist. In fact there is no evidence in her writing to suggest that she is even white. Although she is Canadian. The truth is I made a comment to complement her writing and her next post was entitled “No Comment,” and she turned off her comment thing. She said that getting comments make her feel pressure to write something brilliant. Interestingly, when I wrote the comment I thought she might read my blog and I felt pressure to write junk that Canadians would like. And who needs that kind of pressure?

Thursday, January 20, 2005

more money

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Robert gave his reflection another dollar today.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.

You may recall that Robert likes to talk to his reflection in the mirror. He rarely enters a room with a mirror without at least a friendly, "Hello," and a smile for his reflected counterpart. Last night I got him out of bed for dinner (he had decided to take a late nap). I brought him to the bathroom where he stayed for a few minutes to talk to the man in the mirror. Later, when I was going to bed I found that he had given the man a dollar. I have seen him try this before, standing before the mirror with his wallet in his hand. Once he said, "I don't have any money. I'll get you next time." Last night he finally gave the guy some money - or was it the other way around?

P.S. Robert also put the toilet paper on the soap and lotion bottles on the left side of the photo.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

R.F.H vs Biggy Smalls

Today, while tiling the Kitchen with my iPod on, Robert was my constant companion. Periodically I would put one of the earphones in his ear and he would dance with me. Mostly we just sort of bobbed our heads. The last time I put the earphone in his ear he listened very intently. It was the Notorious B.I.G. Biggy would say something like, “I got techniques drippin’ out my butt-cheeks.” And Robert would answer, “You mean out there . . .” or “You’re referring to the books?” But Biggy would interrupt him so Robert would stop and listen and then attempt another answer. (It is hard to get a word in edgewise with rappers.) The answers never had anything to do with what Biggy was actually saying, but Biggy shouldn’t feel bad; I often get the same kind of non sequiturs from Robert. I could see that Robert was getting exasperated with this verbose character. Why does he keep talking to me if he doesn’t want a response?

Monday, January 17, 2005

Martin Luther King Day

Today Robert mistook himself for Martin Luther King, Jr. Sort of. On the radio someone mentioned Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert said, “Did you hear that? Someone said Robert H.” I of course said, “Get over yourself.” But I really said, “No, she said Martin Luther King Jr.”
Later someone came by with books for Robert to sign and he did it! He signed five books and he did it beautifully. He hasn’t done that in a while. It takes a while and he asks questions like, "Large?" or "At an angle like this?" With each book he asks how he should sign it and I tell him to write his name anywhere and he says, "Just like the last one?" I am always surprised that he remembers the last one. I assume he thinks he is still signing the first one.
Which brings us to a few moments ago. Robert was standing with his arms open as if welcoming me into a hug, which I accepted. He hugged me and said, “I want to thank you for everything. I don’t think I’m going to make it.” I thought he might be crying so I looked into his eyes but they were dry. Then he started talking about the guy who came over earlier with the prints. He meant books but close enough. He talked a little about his inability to participate in intelligent conversations - I think. He seemed to forget that he just told me he wasn’t going to make it.

Saturday, January 15, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Here is a picture from my recent trip to Germany.

Thursday, January 13, 2005


I got my hair cut today. The barber asked what I wanted and I said, “Give me the E.O. Wilson.” He said he didn’t know what I meant. I said, “Cut it like E.O. Wilson’s haircut. The barber said he doesn’t know who E.O. Wilson is. I said, okay then I’ll take the Bernd Heinrich. The barber said, "I am afraid I do not know who he is either, how about if I just give you the Stephen Jay Gould?" I said, “Is that a joke? I wish my hair was that thick.”

Monday, January 10, 2005


The Third World keeps getting thirder. A major earthquake in California’s heavily populated Bay Area killed 53 people in 1989. Earthquakes of similar size killed tens of thousands in Armenia and Iran in recent years. Armenia and Iran probably aren't third world countries but if China can be a developing nation after thousands of years Armenia and Iran can have a similarly condescending title. The recent earthquake in the Indian Ocean was really big. So far about 2,773.5849056604 (I got that number from a calculator) times more people have died from the tsunami after this earthquake than died in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. While waiting for my plane this morning I saw footage of a river of water and refuse – it looked like the stuff Luke Skywalker et al stood in during the garbage scene in Star Wars Episode 4 (which is the first episode) flowing through Banda Aceh. All I can do when I see this stuff is make exclamations like, “shit.” After which I feel I’ve helped no one. Sri Lanka will be ready to welcome tourists in 3 or 4 months according to that countries president. Two friends of mine, Rich and Karen, honeymooned in Thailand and left the beach on Christmas, the day before the tsunami. They were lucky but I was luckier. I was in California, far from the Indian Ocean. Rich and Karen met a lot of wonderful people, many of whom no longer exist. When people use words like “incomprehensible” to describe such tragedies I can’t argue. Words really do fail - so I laugh. I laugh the kind of laughter that comes from a real loss of words and to keep from crying. Because how do you know when to stop crying?

Wednesday, January 05, 2005


Jason gave me a banjo. When I held it someone said, “he looks like he plays the banjo*.” I thought that sounded encouraging. Later that same night we played Cranium and I had to hum a Three Dog Night song. (Guess which one?) It turns out I didn’t know how to hum. My humming was so bad in fact that I overheard the same person say, “uh, maybe the banjo isn’t such a great idea for Jon.” Last night while playing poker someone who shall remain Joy said, “What makes you think you can play the banjo.” I told her that I am not so sure I do think I can play the banjo. Then with the encouragement of my friends I brought out the instrument and proved that I cannot play the banjo. Yet. So Joy said just play it like a guitar. I had to disappoint my audience once more with the knowledge that I do not play guitar.

*Upon reflection I think looking like a banjo player means being skinny and wearing a plaid or western shirt. Which is a heck of a lot easier than playing the banjo.

Monday, January 03, 2005

Navajo Lessons

While driving through Arizona I thought about putting “Speaks Navajo,” on my resume. It would have two benefits. One would be similar to that of professing to speak Spanish: it would prove that I am industrious enough to learn a language. The other is that no one will try to speak it with me. I’ll never be tested. That is unless I apply for a job at an Arizona university. The down-shot is that I do not speak Navajo and the claim would be a false one. Soon after this notion entered my mind, while entering a Denny’s, a Navajo couple asked if I could help them on their way to Albuquerque or Denver. I gave them $1.25. The woman said “please” in Navajo and tried to teach me the word. The man in turn tried to teach me the Navajo word for thank you. I said, “thank you” in English and entered the restaurant. Already I had failed my first Navajo lesson.