Please be advised that all of the content of this blog is the intellectual property of by Claudia H. Schlottman!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Bloggers Rock!


No rant today.  Instead I am raving about my day in the blogger’s spotlight as the Blogger of Note on Words of Wisdom

My first rave is for Pam and Sandy, the kind and patience souls who guided me through my own technical inadequacies and finally showed me how to get my information to them.  They rock!  And I thank them from the bottom of my heart for their patience and kindness.

Now, for the bloggers who visited “Living Through It” and left comments and compliments.  Thank you all -

Java at

Cheryl at 

Jennee at 

Lizzie at 

Katherine at 

Katie Gates at 

cronandbearit at

Domestic and Damned at

Blogged out Grandma at

These busy women with blogs of their own to maintain, took the time to visit “Living Through It” and leave comments.  

Over the next week, I will make it my mission to visit each of their blogs.  This community of supportive writers deserves to be acknowledged and applauded, and they get my rave for today.

Friday, June 25, 2010


I published this post on 06/18/10 in my blog, The Red Sweater, so some of you may have already read it  But when I started My Rants and Raves, I knew it really needed to be here......................cj

Today, Nancy, my friend of 38 years, came and picked me up to go eat lunch at a Mexican restaurant we frequent, though less often now that we’re in our sixties and take Prevacid.  When she parked the SUV, I climbed out of my side and glanced over to see her looking in the car parked next to us.  She wore a look of shock and fear.  I rounded the front of her SUV and looked for myself.  There, in a black car, two windows slightly cracked, on the passenger seat, was a tiny white puppy with brown ears .  She was mewling like a kitten, panting, her eyes wide and terrified, beginning to cloud over.  There was no water in sight.  I clicked The Weather Channel icon on my Blackberry to find that at that moment, the temperature was 95º with a heat index of 100º!

Yes, some idiot person(s) who should be arrested and made to sit in a black car with no water and inadequate ventilation in 100º heat had left that little puppy, who looked as though she were too young to be taken from her mother, in the car under the blazing sun, no shade in sight.

I was almost physically ill, choking back the taste of bile that rose in my throat.  We rushed into the restaurant and I went from table to table until I found the two teen girls whose combined IQ must have been that of a squirrel, who said the puppy was theirs.  I asked if I could take him some water before he died of heat stroke.

“The windows are cracked.”

“Yes, they are, but in this heat the temperature of that car is probably close to 135º.  May I please take the puppy some water?”


“We have a water bowl, the younger of the two said.”

More Shrugs.

“May I please put some water in it?”

“Okay,” the older of the two finally said. She appeared to be about 17, and she handed her younger sister the car keys.  Nancy had gotten a cup of cold water and handed it to me as the girl and I walked outside into the scorching heat, me praying that the puppy was still alive.

She opened the driver’s side door. The puppy was nowhere to be seen.  I was at the passenger door and had to ask her to unlock it, and she reached across to let me in.  The puppy had crawled under the front seat seeking shade, I suppose, and she was still crying, only much more softly.

I reached under the seat and pulled out the puppy and put the cup to her lips.  She drank weakly, hardly able to lap at the water, but as he continued to drink, her tongue started working harder at getting the water down.

“Where is the water bowl?  Will you give it to me?”

The girl, who seemed to be about 12, opened the trunk of the car and retrieved the water bowl.  Now there's an idea:  leave your puppy in a hot car and her empty water bowl in the effing trunk.  I poured the cool water in the bowl and placed it beside the puppy, whose name, as it turns out, is “Carly.”

“How long have you had your puppy?”

“I got her yesterday.  She’s a early birthday present.  My birthday is on the 25th.”

“Don’t you want this dog to live until your birthday?” I queried, coming as close as I would to losing my temper.  "Please, if you don’t have a safe and cool place for her, take your food to-go and take her home.  I’ll buy your lunch if you will take it to-go.”

She said not a word, and returned a blank stare in my direction.  I walked back into the restaurant with her, imploring her and her sister to remember how hot that car would get.  Another shrug.  I asked them to keep an eye on the dog.

Nancy and I choked on our food, so worried we were about the puppy. I got up and went outside to check on it and found it lying beside the bowl, a quarter of the water gone.  She looked a little better, had some shine in her tiny eyes.  The mewling had stopped.

The restaurant manager approached the girls and gave them a stern lecture about dogs in hot cars, and they finally got up and paid and left.

And that’s not the worst of it.  Carly is in for a tough life, and I wonder if she might have been better off to die right there than to go home with those careless girls.  

What kind of people raise children who don’t realize that puppies are not stuffed toys, that they have hearts that beat and lungs that breathe and that they need to be protected from the world around them?  I have been weeping all evening, every time I think of that puppy.

This feeling of helplessness is almost paralyzing.  Should I have called the Humane Society from the restaurant, written down their car tag number?  Shouldn’t I have done more?  

The awful truth is that it’s too late now to do anything.  All I can do now is pray hard that some of what the restaurant manager and I said made some impact on the girls.  Maybe, just maybe, they heard what we said.  I don’t think I can sleep if I can’t convince myself that they did.

Designated Driver

06/25/10  © Claudia Schlottman

This is a tragic but true story, and I feel the need to write about it.  I did not know Jordan Griner, but he was a close friend of Madison, daughter of my good friend, Lisa.

In Atlanta, in the wee hours of Saturday morning, June 20, Jordan, who had volunteered to be the designated driver for an evening out with friends, delivered his last passenger home safely, and within minutes and only a few blocks from his apartment, he was struck and killed by a drunk driver.

Jordan left behind his parents, his fiancé, two sisters and a host of other relatives.  He graduated from The University of Georgia in 2008, and he was serving as a fellow in the Office of the Governor of Georgia.  He worked directly with the governor on many occasions and was looking forward to his marriage and another fellowship in the office of the state’s chief financial officer.  He was avid volunteer and lover of animals.  In short, he was a good guy.  Now he is lost to everyone who loved him, and the world has lost a wonderful soul who would have added to the goodness in this world, had he been give the chance.

Crista Scott, the woman who caused the wreck that killed Jordan, had a blood alcohol level of 0.229, nearly three times the legal limit.  She spent one night in jail, then bonded out in less than 24 hours. (I would venture to guess that she still had alcohol in her blood when she was released).  Scott is charged with first-degree vehicular homicide, DUI and reckless driving.

A young life snuffed out by yet another drunk driver.  The irony of this story is beyond any understanding, and I am interested to learn whether or not this was Ms. Scott’s first DUI.

What is it going to take to keep drunk drivers off our streets and highways?  I am frustrated beyond belief that so many people are maimed or killed because of alcohol.  

Again, what is the answer?   I have a few suggestions.

 - Keep drunk drivers in jail until their preliminary   
hearings, not matter how long. 

- Take away their driver’s licenses at the first 

- Make prison time mandatory at the first offense.

- Post their photos in the newspapers and online, 
describing the charges against them.  (Some 
areas already do this).

- Go after the person or persons who over-served the 
drunk. Charge clubs and bartenders who
knowingly continue to pour drinks for people
who are already drunk, then turning them loose
to drive away in spite of their condition.  Make
them accountable for their illegal actions.

That would be a start, but only a start.  This problem as its roots in so many places:  over indulgent parents, absent parents, college frat parties where pledges are required to “funnel” beer or distilled spirits while their “advisors” look the other way.  There have been several deaths from the alcohol poisoning that results from “funneling.”.  And then there are those who just drink to get drunk.  Jesus.  If a designated driver is killed by a drunk, there is no explaining it.  
Once again, my faith is shaken and tested.  Who is the God who lets these things happen, or even better, where was he when he could have prevented it?   My private struggle with this is something that only I can work through, but surely there is more that the judicial system can do to stem the tide of drunken drivers who are a menace to everyone in their paths.