Life With Other Friends

06 2012 VBauthor photoJoining us today is Vicki Batman, author of the recently released SAN DIEGO OR BUST!
Is her Mr. Right the RIGHT Mr. Right?

Like some of her characters, our award-winning author has worked a wide variety of jobs including lifeguard, ride attendant at an amusement park; a hardware store, department store, book store, antique store clerk; administrative assistant in an international real estate firm; and a general “do anything gal” at a financial services firm–the list is endless.

Today she talks about the animals in her life.


I’ll say this up front: I am a cat person.

I grew up with them. I love how they feel, their soft meows, their whiskers on my face, how they curl in my lap or by my leg or lay on my chest.

I’ve been lucky to have so many great ones in my life: Smokey-a huge gray fella born between our fence and the neighbor’s. Mischief-a big brown tabby who died very tragically. Snuffer-a large hairy gray guy who bumped heads so hard, you could hear bones crunch. Romper-a small, short hair gray tabby who adored Handsome. And Scooter aka Scootsie aka Scoo-sister to Romper and who adores my #2 son, but during the day, she sleeps in my office on a throw I bought in Cancun.

I love cats.

Then Handsome started circling ads for dogs. He began talking more and more about dogs. Everything became about dogs. And one day, I busted him for he had gone somewhere and met a woman who had the kind of dogs he was interested in- Malti-poos.

I have a hard time denying Handsome things after his bout with cancer. Two small dogs I could handle. I knew what to expect. But I did lay down the ground rules: training. Training. And—you guessed it—more training.

And here’s what he brought home:

champ and jones

Champ is the small white guy who looks like a little lambikin when his hair grows. He loves to play catch with his flat cat aka Squeaky.

Jones is the larger gray one, a big baby. He loves to run. And we don’t have any squirrels thanks to him.

They are smart, cute, loveable, and don’t shed. The ideal pooches.

Sometimes, I write about cats and doggies in my books and sometimes, they are named after my pals. In my story, “San Diego or Bust,” I didn’t have any. Instead, I wrote the trip from hell, the wrong Mr. Right, and exploding suitcase, and an obnoxious passenger.  Here’s an excerpt:



My boyfriend is a dirt wad. I just decided.

With a humpf, I dragged my pink tote up the narrow aisle to the plane’s exit, accidentally banging it into the seats along the way. The relieving notion of being back home in Sommerville caused the tension in my chest to fade a smidgen.

A quick peek to the exit told me where Davis, my boyfriend, stood waiting for the okay from the ground crew to head out. His glance my way didn’t look at all pleasant. Similar to one wrapped in disappointment with a downward tilt of his mouth.

I didn’t care much. I just decided.

The words creep, jerk, moron, and “why in the hell am I still dating him??” jumbled my thoughts around. My heart pounded as anxiety ratcheted inside me again.

Maybe I shouldn’t. Maybe I should not put up with him anymore.

The deepest part of me knew I shouldn’t be with Davis Griffith Swansea, III, any longer. I was just in denial. Over the past year, I’d had brief, momentary twinges of dumping him; then, he’d go and do something incredibly romantic like bring me Godiva chocolates—“I know how you love these.” Or buy me a new book by my favorite author—“I happened to see this today.” Or whisk me off to an intimate dinner à deux at the latest and greatest bistro–“I know you’ll like this place.”

My head had gone stupid.


Find “San Diego or Bust” at:

MuseItUp Publishing –

Find Vicki at:






Plotting Princesses:

Find “San Diego or Bust” at:

MuseItUp Publishing –

Categories: Dogs and cats, romance, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 18 Comments

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18 thoughts on “Life With Other Friends

  1. Hi, Vicki! I love cats, too. We’ve had many, many cats over the years — some of them strays who showed up and stayed. Right now we have three — a great lady mouse-catcher, a big grey cat who rolls in the dirt (yuck), and a tabby kitten who is very affectionate at 5 a.m. 🙂 Congrats on the new book!

    • Hi, Barbara! and very big hugs to you. I had to laugh at the one who rolls in the dirt. My Scoo used to do that too! I’d have to brush her. Thank you for posting today. oxox

  2. Oh, Vicki, I love cats and dogs too! For all the reasons you said. My favorite is a Boston terrier, though. So much personality and they don’t shed. Love your excerpt and especially the phrase “my head had gone stupid.” I hope Handsome is free of his cancer 😦 They’re putting in the landscaping at your place in CS 🙂

    • vlmbatman

      Hi, Donnell! Have you been by the house? Landscaping in a big way. I didn’t know Boston terriers don’t shed. Not shedding is really nice. Haha re “My head had gone stupid.” I laughed and laughed when I wrote it. Handsome is very good. oxox

  3. Well, Vicki, you already know I love animals – all of them, especially elephants! I grew up with poodles as well as cats. My first kitty I taught to hold its own baby bottle. I loved him to death. My husband and I graduated to big dogs only, many years back, hence our two chocolate labs. I love them all.

    • vlmbatman

      Hi, Patti! I do know how much you love animals and love to visit your blog. It is so thoughtful. I only hope we can meet one day! That is priceless about the kitty holding a baby bottle. oxoxo

  4. The difference in people: husband loves cats, I’m crazy about boxers. Used to breed them. They are wonderful companions for children. Despite their size and muscular built, they’re very gentle with kids. And they love you, no matter what.

    • vlmbatman

      Hi, Rayne! I have a friend that rescues boxers and she always has pictures of big babies hanging on her. Isn’t it nice to be loved by our friends? We do have personal connections with them. Hugs!

  5. Thanks for visiting today Vicki. Your boys are darling. I love all animals, but right now we’re limited to one cat as a house pet. Miss having a dog.

  6. vlmbatman

    Hi, Kate! The poos are darling. Champ had me laughing so hard yesterday when he carried his big squeaky around. He loves to play catch with it and carry it off to bed too.

  7. marsharwest

    Hey, Vicki. How fun to see you over here at Kate’s home. 🙂 I think it’s interesting how several folks here are both cat and dog people. I tend to think of us as being one way or the other. I’m really a dog person. Still sad (think I may always be) over the loss of our two sweeties this summer. We’d had the Jack Russel Scout and the red long haired Chahuahua Simon14 years.Both rescued when about one. No one loves you like a dog. Simon cuddled in like your cat, Vicki–spooned into by middle or on top of my head. They both slept on a large pillow here with me in the study. Now I just have their pictures. 😦
    Your excerpt is delightful and makes me smile. I’ll be sure to pass this on to others.

    • vlmbatman

      Hi, Marsha! thank you for sharing with me today. Losing a loved furry friend is so hard. Scootie is 20 and we know she won’t be with us forever. She still jumps on my desk, on my bed, on the kitchen counter. What a cutie. The poos are crated at night. They would be heck on wheels if no. thanks, friend for the compliment.

  8. I’m actually more of a dog person…but I always said I wouldn’t mind taking Morris the Cat home.

    • vlmbatman

      Hi, Angela! You know, some people profess to like one species over the other and then they fall in love. Champ and Jones have really enriched our lives. hugs

  9. The dogs are adorable. Your little lamb guy is just like my two who are Bichon’s. Hubby had to choose the dogs when I decided that we could get one… One became two and they both joined the two cats and five rats… yep, my daughter was going through a phase! Pets really make your life worth living!

  10. vlmbatman

    Hi, Melissa! FIVE RATS!!!! OMG. I couldn’t do it. But you are absolutely right-they do make life worth living. Handsome did the same thing yours did. Saw Champ and instantly knew he’d like the little scamp. then saw Jones all by himself and knew Jones needed a good mommy and daddy. 🙂

  11. Your poochers are so snuggly!

    • Hi, Kayelle: those adora-poos are fun and hilarious. They love to make new friends and love Handsome to death. Jones bathes him, especially after he’s been out of town. Hugs!

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