Loki’s New Favorite Thing and RSS Updates

Hello lovely readers,

I’m going to be migrating all of my posts done previously to using WordPress software into the WordPress system over the next few days (hopefully, that’s all it will take). I’m going to try and figure out if I can stop the RSS from updating for each of these since there’ll be at least 100, I think, but I’m less than certain I’ll be successful at stopping the feed updates for them, so your stream may soon be flooding with The Gourmez posts. Apologies, if so!

To make up for this hardship, please be calmed by these new photos of the kitty gods of Woodcroft. Loki has discovered a new way to demand his tribute.

Loki and the foodbag

He’s quite pleased with himself about it.

Loki Pleased

And now, you can see all three cats in their natural atmosphere.

Mazu on chair. Dandi on the floor.

One-eyed wonder

Kittens on the march, err, lie down.

As always, more pictures of the cats for those that just can’t get enough of Loki, Mazu, and Verdandi (namely, me) are available at our photo website.

Spring in Cross Timbers—Photo Blog

Just a quick blog with photos of the flowers up and blooming, and of Loki taking his proper place as lord of the manor. His throne, of course, is the top of the car.

Mazu, of the pretty, pretty coat.

Verdandi, checking out the mulch I put beneath the Bradford Pear.

The flower garden waiting on the tulips to come play.



And that pear tree:

Hope those tulips come soon!

My Cat is Home

Last summer, I posted this blog about my cat, Loki, having disappeared a week earlier. It is leaps and bounds ahead of every other blog entry I’ve posted in terms of hits, and that must be because so many people have had pets go missing and reach out to find others in the same situation to look for some hope that their own animals might return.

Loki’s Misssing Photo

Well, there is hope! Loki has returned! Last Friday, eight months after he disappeared, I received a phone call from Home Again, one of the microchip pet locator services.

“Hello, Becca Gomez Farrell?”


“You have an orange tabby named Loki, who’s been missing?”

“Yes.” At this point, I think I started going into shock, a sensation that didn’t leave until I had him home for a couple days.

“Well, I have a vet office on the line in Apex, who has your cat. Would you like to speak to them?”


I then learned that he had been brought into their office only an hour ago for emergency care.  Apex is more than 10 miles from here, and the lady who brought him in had been feeding him on and off in her neighborhood for the last six months. He was likely hit by a car, or possibly fell from a high height, and ended up with two fractures to his jaw and a ruined eye with an abscess behind it. Before the accident, he had still been wearing his black collar, but the tag had fallen off. The woman, who was crying with worry, and her son waited to meet me.  She told me that she had gone to all forty houses in her neighborhood when he first appeared, to see if someone were missing him, but hadn’t considered a microchip. Many people don’t even know they exist; I’d heard of them but gave them no thought myself until I adopted Loki and Verdandi two and a half years ago from the shelter.  I give much thanks to that woman for her having compassion and bringing him in to a vet, who check for microchips as part of their normal routines.

Loki was a mess. He was acting every bit the wounded cat–drowsy, in pain, smelling like an infection–but would try to purr through his broken jaw when I pet him. I’m not sure I would have recognized him-he looked much larger than he used to–but I think that was mostly swelling of his head, though he is a bit taller. The vet said he perked up when I came, but I would never have been able to tell that myself.  Ben joined me after I’d spent two hours there, and we ended up waiting for another one before they finished checking his blood tests and referred us on to Cary Veterinary Specialty Hospital for further treatment. Except for what was likely a false positive FIV test (Loki’s vaccines lapsed in September, but once a cat is vaccinated for FIV, we’ve learned from my regular vet and the Internet that any test for it will turn up positive because they have the antibodies in their system. He’s had four FIV vaccines in all.), his chemistries looked great, thankfully.

Interview at The Muffin Blog and New Year’s Blog Resolutions

Last week, as part of winning 3rd place in Women on Writing’s Summer ’09 Flash Fiction contest, I was interviewed on The Muffin Blog. We covered my inspiration for Last Complaint, how and why the character came to be the selfish yet somehow human character that she is, my food/wine/cocktail reviews, my lifelong obsession with General Hospital, for which I write a weekly column at Eye on Soaps, and my fantasy novel. So if you’d like to read more about any of the above, wander on over! I’d love to hear your comments on it, either over there or over here.

Interview with me.

Switching gears, I’m mulling over any blog-related resolutions I might want to make this year. In the past year, I’ve gone from the occasional post to nearly daily ones, increased my traffic around 100%, and added in other blogger’s thoughts on wines, in addition to some smaller changes. I think that what I’m missing is more communication with other blogs! But how to fit that in with a schedule where I really don’t just plain write as much as I should? Hmm. Must think it over. If you have a blog that you don’t think I visit, though, please leave the link in the comments and I will add it to my roster!

On my fiction/creative nonfiction goals, I plan to submit at least one piece a week to either a contest or magazine/journal, as long as I have finished ones ready to go. That shouldn’t be too hard to do, right?

Saint Mazu and the Fountain — A Photo Essay

Mazu, our five-month-old kitten, has four goals in life: 1) Convert house plants into litter boxes, 2) Rush out the front door, 3) Pretend I’m a tree, and 4) Defeat the monster in the water bowl.

It’s a Petmate water fountain and the motor makes sucking noises whenever the water gets low. To Mazu, these noises can only mean one thing — there’s a monster in there somewhere and she’s going to get it. She spends at least half her day batting water out of the thing so the noise comes back and she can attack it. Please enjoy these images of one such battle.

The first swing

The first swing

Try the other side

Try the other side



My Cat is Missing


Loki is a male, neutered, orange and tan tabby.  He has a white spot under his neck/on his chest and bits of black on some whiskers, close to his nose.  He’s always been a runt, so his head is small and he is usually skinny.  If you live in Southwest Durham and think you may have seen him since 5/28, please email me at

My cat is missing.  He’s been missing for almost a week now and every day, I cry.  I miss my cat.  He is one of the most personable, friendly, mischievous cats that I’ve ever known.  It probably doesn’t help that we named him Loki after the Norse god of trickery.  Loki, you see, likes a challenge.

30 Threads Blogger Bash

Last night, I dragged my husband with me to the 30 Threads Blogger Bash at the Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC).  For those of you unfamiliar with 30 Threads, it’s a website run by Ginny Skalski, a journalist based in Raleigh, and exists to help us get the goods on which Triangle area websites and blogs are worth a click.  As a subscriber to the site, I was already planning to attend this bash and take advantage of the chance to meet bloggers whose sites I’ve enjoyed reading and drum up some more readers for my own.  You know, that whole networking thing people talk about.  But then, I actually got a nod on 30 Threads this past week, so I was even more excited to go.  Being profiled is fun!

The Gourmez has landed in the blogosphere!

Welcome to my little neck of the interwoods! I plan to use this blog for discussion of political, philosophical, and religious topics and I want you to please talk back! My friends and family cover a broad range of ideals, from tree-hugging Jesus freaks to atheist anti-tax activists to feminist stay-at-home parents. Most of you know that my views on the issues tend to fall all over the place so I’d appreciate your insights and reasons behind why you believe in what you believe, whether it be that climate change is a sham or that Google’s going to take over the world. Ultimately, I want this blog to help me better understand my own views and also inform my fiction writing.

I’m also going to vent, review movies and books, and make various other random musings on occasion, just because I can.