Pictures of Cats and Sunsets

I’ve had a few deadlines in a row lately, which makes me neglect this space. I feel guilty about it, I promise you. I’ve had “Write up the Orient Express stories” on my to-do list since we got back… was that September? Anyway, I find that when I’m inspired to jot something quickly over here, it’s usually just short enough for a tweet, or so long that if I write it over here I won’t be working on what I’m supposed to be working on script/pitch/outline/novel-wise. Read more

books and cats (cliched journaling entry #325)

It’s been rather monotonous here. I’m writing, I’m reading, I’m working. Doesn’t make for much of a journal entry, but I don’t want you to think that I’ve forgotten you.

So, I figured to appease you and to clear my conscience, I’ll just blah-blah on about how droll things are, and whenever you’re about to fall asleep, I’ll flash a cute cat picture. I could even talk about my referral list, if we really run out of stuff to talk about and I want to become a complete cliche.

Let’s see. I’ve been reading. I mentioned that. I finished Lullaby, which wasn’t as scary as I thought it was going to be, but just the right amount of disturbing that I love about Chuck Palahniuk.

I do this… thing… where some of us…. read a play… or see an old movie… or we go see performance… wine… cheese… discussion…

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“I have sixty-two cats.”

if you ever hear me say that, please talk to me.

I went home sick yesterday and promptly slept all afternoon. I guess that explains part of my crankiness.

The down side? Not much happened yesterday. I was pretty much sleeping the whole time.

Took Leaky Cat to the vet. They gave us pills and eye drops. We bought a pill popper and were worried that it was going to cause a world of screaming, squirming and choking. I put Cal in my lap and Eric shoved that popper in his mouth and pushed the plunger…

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with two cats in the yard

I’m not a crazy cat lady.

I’m not.

Now that we’re past that, it’s time for me to tell you about my cats. I think it’s important to tell you about them so that you understand a little bit about my home life, and that when I say my house feels crowded sometimes, you know all of the personalities in the house.

I have two cats.
Taylor and Lillith.

I’ve mentioned them before, but I never went into detail.

First off, I didn’t name them. They came with the name. Somewhere in San Francisco lives their former owner. His name is David. I’ve lost his e-mail address, so I cannot tell him that his kitties are doing just fine. But if he happens to read this…

Let’s start with Lillith…

Lillith: AKA Rose Petal, Spice Girl, Wiwl-wiff.
Age: 5 years.

Lillith is a grey cat. Often when people come into the house, they comment that my cat looks like the cat in Pet Sematary. That’s because she has these sharp green eyes, and she always looks like she’s slightly pissed at you. Lillith is a lap cat. She likes to be in your lap at all times. If she is not in your lap, she looks at you like you are being incredibly rude to her.

Sometimes when I wake up in the middle of the night, she’s sitting over my head, staring straight at me. That’s kinda spooky.

She’s the beta cat, and let’s Taylor pretty much rule the roost.

She likes men more than women. Specifically, she likes my boyfriend more than she likes me.

Lillith wants to be the next Spice Girl. She’s British. She is more elegant than anyone else in the house.

Lillith likes to rub the fur off her chin on anything hard. She has no fur on her chin.

Lillith does resemble in personality the Lillith of “Cheers” fame.

Lillith drinks out of the toilet bowl, which goes against all of her proper breeding and drives me insane.

She has a very skinny tail.

She has $100 worth of toys, but she prefers to chase the shadows on the floor.

When I exercise at home, she likes to bite me on the neck to get me to stop moving around.

Lillith is very good at looking innocent. I recently learned that it is her that goes into the trash can at night, but she puts the evidence over next to the sleeping Taylor, so in the morning he is framed. She’s a smartie.

She has herpes in her right eye. I’m not kidding. Her eye weeps whenever the house gets particularly smoky. My boyfriend will tell you that I gave the cat herpes. He thinks that’s really funny. Since I don’t have herpes (human or feline) this is impossible. She picked it up before she belonged to me. Do not listen to by boyfriend’s opinion on this subject. We have this oil that we can put in her eye when it gets particularly goopy, but it grosses me out to no end, since it’s like an ointment that you have to put straight onto her eye and then rub in. Eww…

Taylor.
AKA: Taylor Dejardan, Taylor-tot, Squishy, “The Cat
With the Fur on His Face”

Taylor is a big tabby cat. Big. People think he’s fat, but like Cartman, he’s just big boned. Taylor’s face is big and squished in. Taylor is a French Canadian Hockey Player. He cannot believe that the Pittsburgh Penguins did not do better this year. He really likes Doug Gilmour, but he is more like Felix Potvin (Felix the Cat).

Taylor is very strong. He can take a slice of pizza down from your hand into his mouth. When he swats you it makes a great “smack” noise. Taylor rarely scratches, but he can bite pretty hard.

Taylor is not a lap cat. He’s not even a “sit-near-you” cat. He likes to sit under the futon and watch our feet. He lays on his back with his legs spread.

Taylor likes catnip a lot. A whole lot.

He thinks that he can become invisible.

Taylor has an eating disorder. He binge eats. He waits until he thinks you’ve gone to bed and then eats everything in his bowl. You can’t stop him.

He’ll eat anything. The cat will sometimes eat chips, fruit, cheese, bread (he loves bread)— especially french rolls.

Taylor eats the carpet. I cannot get him to stop. He loves to sit and munch on the rug. I don’t know why.

Taylor likes to sit on folded clothes.

You can pet his head and neck, but that’s it.

He likes to sit on whatever you’re reading, or whatever he thinks you may read in the future.

Taylor often pretends that he’s my boyfriend. He sits where my boyfriend does on the couch and sits really tall like he wants me to bring him a slice of pizza and some beer.

Taylor will chase bugs and get lost. He hates wind. Wind freaks him out. He keeps looking around to see who just walked by, but he doesn’t see anyone.

Taylor rarely makes a sound, except to say hello, and “feed me.”

They are both good at saying my name. “Paaaam!”

They once packed me a lunch. I make pork chops, which is their absolute favorite, and one day when I got to work, I opened my bag and there was a chewed up pork chop inside. Somehow they got into my bag, dropped off the chop, and closed the bag. They care about my well-being.

Taylor chases Lillith, but Lillith never chases Taylor.

Taylor cannot stand Pearl Jam.
Lillith likes Radiohead.

Taylor doesn’t like me to sing to him.
Lillith does.

Taylor will knock glasses over to drink out of them.
Lillith gets her head stuck in the glass.

They both jump into the empty bathtub and get lost.

They are afraid of cockroaches, but they like to eat crickets.

When the litter box gets full and I forget to change it, they leave little crumbs of kitty litter on the rim of the toilet.

Go on, tell me I’m crazy, but these cats are just as much roommates as anyone else. Except they won’t get a damn job.

I suddenly get this feeling like you’re going, “Oh, and I used to like her so much. She just did a cat page.” So I’ll tell you the truth. I’m still a little sad (see yesterday, and I’m a little drunk off Vodka. I wanted something to cheer me up, and I also wanted you to know where Squishy came from. I just need a damn hug. Damn. I’m gonna go smoke.

I write a lot. (Sometimes it gets weird.)

You might know me as that lady who wrote about Barbie wanting to be a Computer Engineer and then suddenly it was on GMA and NPR and Mattel issued an apology.

Or perhaps you know me as the one who had that one terrible pre-natal massage that turned me into an urban legend.

But there’s more. I have written five books, and on this site I used to write a lot about roller derby, cats, and the crazy-making world of working as a writer.

My most wonderfully nerdy claim to fame is being listed in the OED under “Muffin Top.” (Not as a physical example.)

Perhaps you’re old-school-on-the-Internet enough to remember me as the one who got Anne Heche internationally angry when I did a parody show of her autobiography.

I started pamie.com in 1998, and while I did an admirable job of keeping this place updated regularly, once I had a kid plus a writing career, my time for blogging diminished considerably. I am grateful for this space and the relationships that formed from here. I used to run the Dewey Donation System with the wonderful David T. Cole, but when we stopped having time to surprise libraries with books Dave deleted the whole thing because he’ll never understand my need to hoard the internet.

Today I often write in feature animation while juggling various tv, film and book projects I hope will one day see the light. I so rarely get to talk about them because of contracts, which is why I like doing panels, festivals, podcasts, coffee meetings… basically any place where I’m asked to sit down and talk too much.

You can also find me on Twitter.

The Hardest Goodbye

I’ve been putting off writing this because I wanted some time to privately grieve, but also I knew if I got even a single kind word or condolence from you, I wouldn’t be able to handle all that has been going on. But now it’s time to write this down, as so many of you loved this cat over these long pamie.com years.

Sweet Cal is gone. Read more

Updates on Cal

Giving a little Cal update, as he’s sleeping beside me right now on the couch.

After two inconclusive aspirations and a visit to the cardiologist, Cal is now on a tiny dose of daily beta-blockers because of a heart defect, and some occasional subcutaneous fluids to help with any dehydration due to his kidney issues. The mass is still unidentified, but he’s got so much going on with him at once, opening him up to find out what it is seems too risky at this point. He’s still playful and silly, but a little slower and sleepy due to his medication. Read more

Other

More words! Here are some anthologies where you can find me, as well as a list of the shows I’ve worked on and the scripts that sit around me in piles.

Television

  • 2011 WGA Writers Access Project Honoree — http://www.wga.org/content/default.aspx?id=4551
  • Romantically Challenged — Consultant
  • Samantha Who? — Executive Story Editor. Produced episodes: “Help!” “The Dog”. Season Two.
  • Samantha Who? — Story Editor. Produced episode: “The Hypnotherapist”. Season One.
  • Mind of Mencia — Producer. Season two.
  • Hot Properties — Staff Writer. Two produced episodes: “GRRR” and “Waiting for Oprah”
  • Mind of Mencia — Writer. Season one.

Development/Specs:

  • Why Moms Are Weird — Author’s own novel optioned into a sitcom for ABC Family, 2011.
  • Papa Was a Rolling Stone — Half-hour single cam.  An aging, fast-lane rockstar is placed under house arrest and forced to live with both his mother and the high-strung, overachieving 17-year old daughter of his that he’s never really known. Developed with 20th Century Fox, 2011
  • Crazy Cat Lady: Murder Solver — Half-hour single-cam. It’s not Fran’s fault her cats have started talking to her.  It’s just she turned thirty and everybody hates her and the cats have had enough of her complaints. 2010, Recipient of WGA Mid-Level Writer’s Access Project Honor
  • 30 Rock — “Do It Anyway”
  • Parental Guidance — Short film developed/written for ABC Family, directed by America Ferrara, starring Emilie de Ravin and Justin Kirk (in post-production), 2008.
  • Why Moms Are Weird — Author’s own novel optioned into a sitcom for Watson Pond Productions, 20th Century Fox, and American Broadcasting Company, 2006-2007.
  • Possible Side Effects — Hour-long drama based on the world of pharmaceutical sales reps, developed with Sony Pictures Television, 2006-2007.
  • Why Girls Are Weird — Author’s own novel optioned into a screenplay for Robert Cort Productions, 2003.
  • The Secret Letters of Natalie Davis — hour-long teen drama pilot.

Feature scripts

  • Thank You For Being a Friend — Two women pose as lesbians in couples counseling as a last-resort effort to save their dysfunctional friendship.
  • Boy Trouble — A Just One of the Guys set in the Tween rockstar world, a seventeen-year old girl poses as a boy to help keep her superstar best friend’s public persona pure, only to accidentally become the next Justin Bieber. Inspired by an article by Wendy McClure in Bust Magazine.
  • It Skips a Generation — Eighteen-year old Marty learns more about herself than she ever bargained when she meets her eccentric grandmother for the first time on a cross-country road trip. WinnerHollywood Gateway Screenwriting Contest, 2002. Semi-Finalist (out of 4000 scripts), Austin Film Festival, 2002. Quarter Finalist, Scriptapalooza, 2002.
  • Booty — A group of Sorority rushees search to find pirate treasure to save their beloved house.
  • Thanksgiving — When Elizabeth plans to announce her recent engagement on Thanksgiving to her large, bizarre, and complicated family, she discovers her parents have quite a surprise of their own.
  • Groomsday — Bill thought he could do anything. Then he had to plan his own wedding.

Other Books

It’s a Wonderful Lie: 26 Truths About Life In Your Twenties — Anthology. Emily Franklin, editor. Essay: “I CAN’T HAVE SEX WITH YOU.” 5 Spot, January, 2007.

Bookmark Now: Writing in Unreaderly Times — anthology. Basic Books, May, 2005.

An anthology of original essays from our most intriguing young writers, Bookmark Now boldly addresses the significance of the production of literature in the twenty-first century. Or simply, “How do we talk about writing and reading in an age where they both seem almost quaint?”

Girls’ Night Out — anthology. Red Dress Ink. June, 2006. Short story: “What Happens Next.” Net proceeds of anthology benefit War Child and No Strings.

Cold Feet — anthology. Downtown Press, May, 2005.

The bride-to-be in Pamela Ribon’s “Sara King Goes Bad” has always done the right thing but decides it’s important to know what it feels like to be reckless for once. And so two weeks before her wedding, she indulges in an unforgettable night of sex, drugs, and petty crime.

Other contributors include: Heather Swain, Lisa Tucker, Elise Juska, and Tara McCarthy. Read the review in Romantic Times.

Essays and Recaps:

  • Austin American-Statesman — Weekly columnist in the Technopolis section: “Web Head”
  • Television Without Pity— as “pamie,” recapped Get Real, Ally McBeal, Young Americans, Real World: San Francisco, Popstars, Making the Band, The Sopranos, Gilmore Girls, Queer as Folk, Boomtown, Tarzan, Wonderfalls.
  • Fresh Yarn — Essay: “Three Questions”

Anime scripting and Voice Acting:

Jumping around on stage until people clap:

  • Letters Never Sent – Liz Feldman and Pamela Ribon revive the delicate art of letter-writing by sharing the letters hidden in the back of their closets, shoved underneath their underwear, and tucked in the pages of their childhood diaries. They come clean on their feelings about love, religion, fame, and people who like to be peed on. Letters Never Sent satisfies the deep desire to read other people’s mail without having to share any of your own. Comedy Central Stage, March 2004. Stages Theatre, April 2004. Official Selection for 2005 US Comedy Arts Festival. (USCAF info page) (Press: Aspen Times, Feb. 2005)
  • Call Us Crazy: The Anne Heche Monologues – Creator, Director, Performer. Fifteen precious pieces of remarkably crazy writing from Celestia herself. The Knitting Factory, November-February 2001-2002. The Hudson Avenue Theater (reviews), January-February, 2003. International scandal that received attention from People MagazineNew York PostThe GlobeFilthThe Howard Stern Show, and more.
  • What A Girl Wants – One Woman Show, Momfest 2000, Austin, TX
  • Slumber Party – One Woman Show, Showcase for US Comedy Arts Festival consideration, 1999.
  • LOL (Connected) Writer/Director, FronteraFest Best of the Fest, 1998.
  • Monks’ Night Out — Writer/Director/Performer — Sketch and Improv troupe based in Austin, TX. Five performances a week, including corporate gigs. Created showcases, directed large cast, created nightly, ever-changing set-lists on the fly. Didn’t kill anybody. Helped run Big Stinkin’ Sketch and Improv Comedy Festival (2-5.) 1997-2000.
  • (More available upon request)

Notes on pamie.com

pamie.com – (June 1998- July 2001, July 2002-) “Pop Culture Princess” (TM Lemonbugg). Award-winning personal site that specializes in non-mainstream content. Special focus on the business of writing, pop culture, comedy and “Why Girls are Weird.” Media attention in the SXSW Interactive festivals 2000 and 2001, Austin Chronicle (Pamela Ribon: Sealed With a Squish, and winner of Best of Austin, 2000), and Austin-American Statesman. (Also known as “Squishy”) Yearly bookdrive received media attention in Austin Chronicle (“Shelf Life Support”) Nominated for Lifetime Achievement Bloggie, 2006.

Goodbye, sweet kitty.

From the best I can tell, the only reason a girl turns thirty-five is so the cat she’s had since college can pass away. It’s happened to too many friends of mine this year, and now I guess it’s my turn. Read more