Goodbye Dear Friends

This is the reason I haven’t been doing the podcast. And honestly, even writing this, I don’t know if I actually am going to be able to sit down and record this or if it’s going to end up as just a blog post.

Anyone who has listened to me for a notable amount of time knows that we have had a rather large family of pets. Many of whom have been with us for many years. One of which, my cat Fluffy, has actually been with us since just after our oldest son was born. Matter of fact, she was actually about 4 months older than him. As a combination of both her commanding personality, and her status as both the first and oldest pet, Fluffy was the senior pet in charge of everyone. Not just the other pets, but us as well. She would raise hell if we weren’t in bed on time. But she also was always there to take care of us if anyone was sick. We always said Fluffy had to have been an old southern nurse in a past life because of the way she took care of everyone in the house, but made sure you knew that she was the one running the show. And she ran the show for nearly 14 years.

But in mid January, Fluffy started acting strange. She started getting lethargic. She started sleeping more and not patrolling the house like she normally would. We noticed at one point that she hadn’t left our bed in at least two days. Which also meant that she hadn’t eaten or had anything to drink in at least two days.

We started taking her out of the bedroom and out into the living room to sit with us during the day. We started bringing her cans of wet food to get her to eat. she actually started getting up to get water on her own. And she would go to the litter box and make her way back to bed on her own when she didn’t want to be out with us anymore. But she didn’t have the energy that she usually did. She stopped yelling at us. She wouldn’t even complain about me taking the covers from her when I came to bed. We knew her time was running out. We thought that any day would be her last. Surprisingly, she continued on like this for nearly a month. Some days it even seemed like she may be making a recovery. It seemed like every time we’d talk about her condition, the next day she’d be up and around trying to prove us wrong about how bad she was. But we all knew that she wasn’t going to be able to go on like that for very much longer and had come to accept that she was not long for this world.

Meanwhile, we got hit with a complete and utter curveball and shook the entire family to the core…

Now, we had 5 animals: 2 dogs and 3 cats. Fluffy was very much my cat. We had bonded deeply and she was never far from my side. You could even say that she was my Familiar. But, next in the hierarchy of the pets in the family was Jasper. Jasper belonged to my wife. He was our 10 year old shepherd/husky mix. He was one of the many animals given to us by my sister over the years. You may recall our dalmatian, Emmitt, who also came from her, who we lost a few years ago, who was also the top dog under Fluffy. Now, Jasper was just a big sweetheart. He was always happy. He didn’t pay any mind to the cats as long as they didn’t try to mess with anyone. He even let our newest kitten, Baz, sleep on him as a baby. Separation anxiety aside, Jasper was just a super chill happy guy. And as much as Fluffy was by my side, Jasper never left my wife’s side, save to do his business in the back yard. While she would be at work in the office, he would stand guard outside the office door. If someone wanted in the office, he had to escort them in. Ever her security guard and very best of good boys. He really was just the sweetest happiest guy who never cared to harm anyone or anything other than out of defense.

But in the midst of our “hospice care” for Fluffy, in the middle of a Sunday afternoon, completely out of nowhere, Jasper had a massive seizure. It was one of the most terrifying things we’d ever seen, and there was nothing we could do to help him. We had no idea why it happened. All we knew was that we had to get him to the vet immediately. Unfortunately, things didn’t get any better from there.

After examining him and running bloodwork, it was determined that Jasper was not only severely diabetic, but his blood sugar was so high that he had gone into diabetic ketoacidosis. His blood sugar was so high it had become acidic. His heartrate and blood pressure were through the roof, and another seizure was more than likely to occur. He was facing multiple days of hospitalization, and tens of thousands of dollars of testing, and treatments just to get him stabilized, followed by a lifetime of medications and bloodwork to control the medications for the diabetes. Cost aside, with his age and health, we couldn’t put him through all of that. We didn’t want to subject him to the remainder of his lifetime being spent getting poked and prodded and medicated just to possibly extend his life by a few more years for our benefit. So we made the heartbreaking decision to put Jasper to sleep. Completely out of nowhere, while mentally prepared to lose one beloved family pet, we lost another that we were in no way ready to say goodbye to.

In the aftermath of losing Jasper, the whole energy in the house changed. All of the other animals’ temperaments changed. You could physically feel the loss of his presence in the house. His best friend, our husky, Mystik was obviously in mourning. She didn’t eat for several days. She just moped around the house. The other cats, Toby and Baz, started to cozy up to her as they seemed to all mourn their lost companion. Jasper really was the big soft heart of our home. There was an emptiness left in the house without him that I don’t know if we could ever, or would ever replace. But our pain wasn’t over.

What about Fluffy?

You know how I said that every time we talked about Fluffy’s condition, she seemed to get up and show some improvement, almost out of spite? In hindsight, it probably wasn’t the best idea to discuss the prospect of putting her to sleep while she was sitting with us on the couch. She went on like this, with the sort of “kitty hospice” we had her in for around a month. But one day, a little more than a week after Jasper died, she seemed determined to show us that she was perfectly fine. She got up that day on her own and came out to the living room to eat and get water. She went to the litter box herself. She even climbed up on the couch and then back into our bed by herself. The whole day was spent with her figuratively giving us the finger for even suggesting that she was sick and that it was time to end her suffering. Unfortunately, she refused to accept how wrong she was.

I’m not going to get into the details of it, save to say that when I got home from work that night, I found Fluffy dead and cold in the kitchen, in a manner that would have traumatized anyone else in the house if they had found her. I know that because of how it has affected me. It appears that she was still trying to show off that she can still keep up with everyone else, and she couldn’t. Even typing this now, the images are rushing back to me, and I know that she did not go peacefully. I am heartbroken at the loss of my tuxedoed companion, and every part of me hurts inside and out knowing how it ended for her. I was ready to wake up and find her having passed in her sleep, but not like that. That broke something inside of me that I don’t know could ever be healed. I will forever have that image of how I found her burned into my mind and my heart.

In the span of two weeks, we lost two of the most beloved members of our household. The entire pet/family dynamic has changed. Toby is now the senior pet in charge. Mystik and Toby are working together to keep things together. They all went through another period of mourning after Fluffy’s passing. Nevermind that all of them saw her, and saw how it broke me in that moment. None of them have been the same since, and neither have we.

I know it may sound dramatic, being so upset by the loss of a couple of pets. But they were family. They were our friends, our companions, our protector, our nurse, a silly smile on a bad day, and the closest thing to a daughter we ever really had. And not a day is gonna go by where we aren’t going to wish that they were still here with us, even when they were yelling at us to go to bed, which I’m sure Fluffy would be doing to me right now…

Ruminating on Recording

Lately I’ve been having trouble sitting down to record a podcast. In part because of just being too busy or because I’m too tired when I do have the time.

But also I’ve been having trouble finding anything to talk about. Lately I feel like it’s just been tired kind of repetitious ramblings about my garden and and about being busy with life. Although I have liked my random recipe drops, I feel like I haven’t produced any real quality episodes in quite a while. My only goal in the show is to be entertaining in some way. But lately I don’t really feel like I’ve been accomplishing that.

To a certain degree I feel like the time between episodes takes away the energy I have to talk about things. You know how you’re just more passionate about things that recently happened moreso than something that happened weeks ago? That. I’ve got so much distance between recording sessions that things that I really was excited to talk about when they happened, I no longer have the same excitement for. If I remember wanting to talk about them at all.

At the same time I’ve been very disappointed in myself at the quality of the show posts on the website. Along with the multiple segments and the podcast reviews, went the longer, more in-depth posts with links and the full recipes that I talk about. I know it’s connected to my current recording situation where I record in the wee hours of the morning when I have a little time and then rush out the release. I think I’m gonna try to go back in and update some of the skimpy show notes. But, I have no clue what kind of time that’s gonna take.

I’m not really sure what I should do about all of it. On one hand, I love recording the podcast and sharing all of my life with you all. But on the other hand, it’s supposed to be an entertainment medium, and I don’t feel like I’ve been doing a very good job of entertaining lately. Throw in everyone’s best friend, low self-esteem, and I start wondering if I’m even entertaining to anyone to begin with.

Yeeeaaaah I know this has just been one big rambling pity party post. But sometimes the house is loud and I have to empty my brain out without the use of a microphone. Which I have to say takes sooooo much longer to do. Geeze, writing is slow. It’s no wonder I chose podcasting over blogging. Holy crap.

Bonus: Garden Update/ Planting Melons

While I don’t usually like to appear on camera in general, I recently decided to film a little video of myself working in my garden. In short, my dog dug up one of my garden beds shortly after I had planted seeds for cantaloupe and watermelon. So, I had to clean up the bed and replant the seeds. Spoilers: my phone overheated and died mid video, so I had to do a follow-up and was unable to show myself actually planting the seeds.

It’s my first time really trying to make a video for my Youtube channel so I’m totally out of my element doing it, but it was fun. If you have any other ideas of other stuff you’d like me to make videos of, let me know in all the standard locations.


Review: “The Box Of Oddities” The most fitting podcast title/ description ever

Kat & Jethro Gilligan Toth bring their irreverent brand of humor and unique chemistry to an exploration of the strange, the bizarre and the unexpected.

4 Stars


  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Highly Informative
  • Well Researched
  • Wide Variety of Topics
  • Twice Weekly Releases
  • Bumpers Don’t Get Stale
  • Great Chemistry
  • Authenticity- No Phonies
  • Damn Funny
  • Not Above Self-Deprecation

Cons: (Barely)

  • Stories Can Get Graphic
  • Ad Breaks Can Get Pretty Long
  • Can Veer Into the Political


I really need to stop making promises about the podcast

Back in September I wrote something, maybe even recorded something, I don’t even remember, amounting to me saying I wanted to really commit to doing all of my old regular segments in the podcast again. I talked about making new music and bumpers and really revamping the show. And I really meant it. I really wanted to take everything a lot more seriously when it came to doing the podcast. I wanted to sit down and create my own theme song for the show, and really put a lot more time into crafting each episode’s topics and segments, and do a lot more writing on the website.

But when push came to shove, my laziness and constant procrastination just seems to get the best of me. At the same time, the additional time I thought that I had to work on these things disappeared when my boys’ school closed down on campus classes again and they all went back to full time distance learning. When I said I wanted to write more, I actually had time to write more. And I had time to sit down and work on music and bumpers and art and show notes and all of the things that would really help to improve the podcast. And just as soon as I voiced that desire, I no longer had the time to do it.

I never really asked what you wanted

I realized something as I was preparing to record the first new episode of the podcast this week. For all of my promising to commit to doing the news and podcast recommendations every show, I never asked if anybody really wanted me to. I just assumed that because some people had previously said they liked those segments, that I needed to have them. But in all honesty, I’m not sure how much anybody does or does not want me to do them. Now, I could be completely right, and I should totally put more effort into those parts of the show. Or, nobody really cares and I should just get better at telling stories in a funny way, and maybe get better at interviewing.

I mean, I should do that anyway, but should I just drop those other segments and focus on my stories and ramblings, or should I put more energy into the other stuff. I don’t know, and I probably wont really know unless someone comments on something. And even then, most people just give me the old, “you do you / do what you want”, answer. And it pisses me off for two reasons: First because it’s not giving me any information to help in making my decision. And second, because it’s exactly what I would tell someone.

Sooooo… New promise…

With a lack of information to go on, I am going to commit to making my stories better and funnier. And I will try to find a way to reincorporate interviews into the podcast in some way. I may or may not do more news in the show, but I will be sharing more of it on the social medias. Cuz why not? I really am going to try to write a new podcast review between episodes. I can’t guarantee I will always do it, but I really do want to try and do it. I need to get better about sitting down and working on things that don’t require me talking into a microphone. Talking is easy, writing is a royal pain.

That’s all I’ve got. If anyone wants me to do more of something in the show, they really need to tell me. I don’t need “yes” men. I really want to know what people want to hear from me. Beyond that, I don’t know what else to do.

Forgive the review ramblings

So I’ve started writing formal podcast reviews here. (The first of which will likely be posted just after this.) And in writing this first review, I realized that I’ve never written a real review for something before. I’ve technically reviewed over 50 podcasts over the years verbally, but I’ve never really written any of it down as a coherent blog post with positives and negatives and stuff.

As I was writing I did what, in writing for a podcast is great, but in blogging is troublesome, I wrote the way I talk. And as anyone who’s ever listened to the podcast can attest, I meander.

I know I need to get more practice writing in general. I haven’t done much of it at all since high school. And I need to set aside real time to write both the review blogs, and prep for episodes. After all, I promised to be more prepared. I really think I need to start writing blogs and turn those stories into the episodes. The problem is that I can never bring myself to write what I’m thinking before I talk. I just am able to think out loud better than I can write my thoughts. I realize that I’m writing my thoughts right now, but trust me this bit is tough.

I guess I just have to go back to what I just said. I need to get better at writing. I just have to pick up my laptop and start writing during the day. The problem is, I am really uncomfortable using a laptop or working anywhere besides my office. I can sit down at my desk for hours and just chug away and focus only on the task at hand, but put my laptop in front of me and my whole vibe changes. I just can’t focus when I’m using that thing and I don’t know why.

Maybe I need to, like the writing, just do it more. I’m sure if I spend more time using my laptop to write, and maybe do some editing work, it’ll feel less weird to me. And then maybe I’ll get better at writing. And then maybe I’ll get better at writing reviews…

Wow that’s a lot of maybes that I need to do.

Whatever. For now I’m gonna just try to write my reviews in a way that is maybe a little more coherent but is definitely me. All I can do is work on it and hope I get better at it. In the mean time, forgive me if my podcast reviews sound, well, like I wrote them.

Welcome To Night Vale

Review: “Welcome to Night Vale” The show that makes you go, ok so I guess that’s a thing…

Original feature in ODO 66: Where Does Chocolate Milk Come From?

3 and half stars
3 1/2 Stars

WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE is a twice-monthly podcast in the style of community updates for the small desert town of Night Vale, featuring local “weather,” news, announcements from the Sheriff’s Secret Police, mysterious lights in the night sky, dark hooded figures with unknowable powers, and cultural events.

  • Pros:
    • In the early seasons, the story arc that flows through between episodes really adds depth to the world
    • Excellent writing and character development over the years.
    • Cecil’s voice and narrative style draws you in and makes you trust him, until you learn that he may have a little bit of bias.
    • The complexity of the story after 8 years of building is amazing. So many things have changed in this world since the first season that it’s hardly even the same world anymore. *wink*
    • The little running gags and dark humor will have you questioning what you just heard while also laughing your head off at the absurdity.
    • It’s got a taste of Lovecraft inspiration, but not directly .
    • The original musical score by “Disparition” sets the tone perfectly.
  • Cons:
    • You really can’t just jump in at any time. You’ve gotta go all the way back to the start.
    • The “weather” segments are very “hit or miss.”
    • There are way too many ads at the start of each episode. (I know it’s shitty to complain about this, but after a while it gets really annoying to listen to.)
    • The later seasons start dragging out and become difficult to follow.
    • The main storyline in later seasons is less cohesive. It is obvious in the storytelling when the writers stopped focusing on this show.

Odd Dad Out is getting kind of a reset…

Time away to think

Being away from the podcast for these last few months has given me some time to think about what I want to do with things. Honestly, the way the world is right now made me seriously reconsider whether or not I should come back to the podcast at all. In the last year I have struggled a lot with, besides just getting content out, coming up with topics to cover on the show. I haven’t listened to a great number of new podcasts lately to offer many new recommendations.


Something’s Gotta Give, and I’ve Only Got One Thing That Can: ODO 193

The situation with “distance learning” and the battle over mine and my wife’s schedules has reached a point that we are having to make serious changes. Because of our separate work schedules, it has been very difficult to balance work and our boys’ school lessons. We are now having to look into changing our work schedules to accommodate it all. Ultimately, the issue lies with the need to supervise our younger boys during their school day, my wife working during school hours, and my graveyard work schedule necessitating me sleeping during the day. There’s only so many hours in a week, and I need all of the ones available to get sleep and take care of home business.

With that, I’ve decided to put the podcast on an indefinite break until a time that I will be able to continue producing it without having to sacrifice my limited sleeping hours and potentially my health.

I know I have said this in the past, even as recently as earlier this year. But under the current circumstances, I simply cannot continue the show. The stress of trying to navigate my children’s education mixed with my already questionable work/life balance just doesn’t leave any room right now for podcasting. I have even had to pass up paid podcast editing opportunities due to the current lack of any time to do so. I have to take some time to try to find a balance, and hopefully, before too long, I’ll be able to come back to the show. Unfortunately, I do not know when/ if that will happen.

I would like to say, thank you for listening. Thank you for your support for the last 5 years. I know there are far more entertaining shows to listen to than my ramble fest, and you are an amazing group of people that have continued to motivate me to keep going for all this time. And you are also the reason that I will do whatever I have to do to figure this out and come back with all of the energy I had before the world turned upside down.

So I got tested for Covid

DR emoji

See, what had happened was…

I had a headache. Ok so it’s not that simple, but that’s the gist of it. I’m not normally one to really get headaches, especially like major migraine type headaches. But tuesday afternoon I got hit with a serious headache. It was like a, head spinning, can’t think clearly, all light hurting, think I’m gonna throw up kind of headache. And, like I said, I really don’t get headaches.

The thing is that, in the covid times, everything is a symptom of Corona. Coughing, sneezing, fever, body aches, but apparently especially a headache. At least from what I’ve heard, one of the most painful parts for, non-hospitalized, covid is the massive headache. So of course I got spooked. Part of my job is disinfecting and cleaning offices after possible exposure. So I’m theoretically at an elevated risk. So I did the responsible thing and got tested for Covid.

Nevermind that it is actually a little tough to find a place to get a covid test in my neck of the woods. (That has more to do with offices being booked more than anything.) I actually managed to find an urgent care clinic right near my house that took walk-ins for covid tests. More accurately, they take drive ups because it’s all done while you sit in your car. They bring you the paperwork and get your insurance information. They take your vitals through the window and even do the doctor questions/ exam via video chat on your phone.

Then the fun begins…

That has got to be the most uncomfortable thing I’ve had to deal with since my Army physical. Now it’s not painful, per se, but when they stick that swab up your nose… Well, have you ever seen a picture of a woodpecker’s tongue in it’s skull? It feels about that long. It’s like they have to swab the backside of your brain cavity. Oh yeah! They have to do it for both nostrils. The swabs smell something like a combination of pool chlorine and dirty celery. (Don’t ask.)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Flicker-Tongue-320x180.jpg
it seriously feels like they shove that swab this far up your nose

And, since I was there anyway, I went ahead and got the antibody test done, just to see if I had actually had covid in the past. That one is a quick finger poke, which of course they had to do twice because my finger wouldn’t bleed. But it only takes about 15 minutes to get the results back. (That one was negative by the way.)

Now we wait

It can take anywhere from 3 to 14 days to get my results back. At this time it’s been 7 days. Some of the people at work have gotten tested and gotten results in 3 days, but I guess every testing site and lab has their own capacity and testing rate. In the mean time I can’t go to work. And I don’t have any editing clients to work on at home right now…