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You will perhaps remember how I stated in my last journal entry that my grandmother had mostly been stable since we got here (she had gotten a little bit worse since my mother and I arrived in New York, but I didn't think she had gotten that much worse). Unfortunately, things have significantly taken a turn for the worse. Early this morning...Grandma passed away at the age of 74 :(

I mentioned how Grandma had been sleeping for the past couple of days in my last journal; but yesterday she really took a nose dive. Her breathing became much more labored; she was barely even breathing at all. She barely even reacted to the medicine the hospice care brought to try to help her. My aunts and several of my cousins were convinced that she was going to die that day...my mother, my uncles, and myself didn't think she was going to die right yet. Nonetheless, before I went to bed, at the insistence of my aunt and cousin, I said goodbye to Grandma. I didn't really know what to say at all...saying goodbye to my mother's dog a couple of years ago was hard enough, but saying goodbye to my own Grandmother easily dwarfed that. I stumbled around for words and basically told her that I would always remember her, and that whatever happened to her, she would be okay (I'm not entirely convinced there's an actual afterlife, but seeing that I knew my Grandma believed in one, I figured that was something she would want to hear). So far, that has been the hardest thing I've ever done in my life...Not too long after I went to bed, Grandma passed away peacefully.

I knew Grandma was in bad shape seeing as she had stage 4 colon cancer and it had already spread to her other organs, but I definitely did not anticipate her passing away while I was up here visiting for the last time...The fact that I saw my grandmother basically in her dying moments is something that is always going to stick with me as long as I live, and it's most certainly not a pleasant memory. Unfortunately, that's life...I think we will all witness people we love and care about dying before our eyes at some point or other in our lives. It's just something that happens to everyone; you can't really avoid it...The thing that bothers me the most is that Grandpa never got to say goodbye to her (although seeing how he is suffering from senile and is more or less Grandpa Simpson now, I'm not sure what he would have said...), and when my mother told him that his wife passed on, he basically had no reaction. He didn't know what to say; he didn't even seem to understand. He had no reaction at all. How horrible it must be to not even understand something terrible happened to your loved one...:(

The rest of my family (save for me, Grandpa, and my mother) has left the house to make funeral arrangements. Grandma is to be cremated (as she wished), and this coming spring her ashes will be spread out over one of her favorite spots. This weekend, my mother's family will have a toast to my Grandmother's life. I can't help but worry that things will turn ugly at the toast tomorrow...While my grandmother's illness brough my mother's whole family back together for the first time in years, a few nasty things have been said and I dread that things will get ugly over the money...As for me and my mother's travel plans...we're still scheduled to head back home on Monday...

You would probably expect that I'd be crying my eyes out over my Grandmother's passing, but I'm not. I do feel rather sad inside, but I also just feel...well...blank inside. I don't really know how to feel at all. Is it normal to feel like that...?
  • Mood: Depressed
  • Listening to: Jethro Tull-Life Is A Long Song
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: A television
  • Playing: Pokemon Blue
  • Eating: Flintstones Chewable Morphine
  • Drinking: Some kind of liquid substance...
This past weekend, I did something I never thought I would ever do, or even COULD do.

I climbed a mountain. Well, a large hill; not QUITE a full-on mountain, but still, it's an accomplishment I'm quite proud of! :)

You will remember in my last journal entry that I'd arrived in New York to be with my family and that my cousin and I had planned a hiking trip to the Catskills for the weekend. However, due to the circumstances going on with my grandmother...we opted to stay closer to where they lived. On Sunday my cousin and I travelled about 45 miles or so to a large hill called Jones' Hill (it's located near a ski resort), which we proceeded to climb our way up. There were a few challenges along the way, but on the whole, it was nowhere near as death-trappy as say, Evergreen Mountain from the "Going It Alone" episode of the Raccoons (well, obviously not :D). After about a half-mile hike, we came to a creek which was a bit challenging to figure out how to navigate across (I actually slipped and fell, scraping my knee up a bit on a large rock I tried to jump across to), and from there, we went up behind a rather picturesque waterfall called Tinker Falls. The trail went up and eventually above the waterfall (you had to climb some stairs that were very obviously man-made), and from there, it was about a mile hike to the viewpoint near the summit, where we ultimately ended up. And what a view it was! It was quite...enthralling seeing the other hills and mountains and the valleys below. Very scenic! It was a difficult climb up and down for me (seeing as I have bad feet, I had to stop close to a dozen times just to give my feet a bit of a rest), and my feet were sore as HELL the next day. But, overall, I really enjoyed the experience, and I would definitely like to try climbing another mountain some day (provided it's not too challenging)! We got more than a few pictures of the trip; I hope to be able to post some in the near future! (If and when my cousin sends 'em to one of my e-mail addresses...)

My mother and I will be returning home in the very near future...last night, we booked our flight back home. We'll be leaving New York next Monday afternoon...we'll be flying home out of Syracuse, making a stop at Philadelphia along the way. Then we'll be flying back to Charlotte where Dad will pick us up and take us back home. Grandma is so far fairly stable (she's been sleeping pretty much the whole past couple of days), but there's no doubt she'll take a real turn for the worst in the near future...it was for the best that we saw her before things REALLY got bad. It's actually been a more pleasant trip than I THOUGHT it would be (there haven't been any really nasty family squabbles like I thought there might be), but alas, it's still tinged with sadness knowing this is going to be the last time I will ever see my grandmother (I wonder if we'll be back up for the funeral...)

And finally...as I'm sure you've all noticed, the dA staff decided to make an update to the site. Your personal stuff and your notes/messages have all been shoved over to the right on the bar at the top, and now all of our recent status updates (journals, submissions, etc.) appear in a big feed on the left hand side of our profiles. While this isn't the WORST change to the site they could possibly make...as you probably guessed, I'm not very fond of it. Particularly the status updates appearing on our profile...it just looks so cluttery looking. It reminds me of the updates Google is so fond of making to Youtube...there was nothing really wrong with the site's design; why do you need to fix something when there's nothing wrong with it? I'm sure I will get used to this in time, but needless to say, I'm not really sold on these changes...
  • Mood: Peaceful
  • Listening to: Genesis-Watcher Of The Skies (1972)
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: A television
  • Playing: Pokemon Blue
  • Eating: Flintstones Chewable Morphine
  • Drinking: Some kind of liquid substance...
Yes, as you probably guessed, I'm in New York now, like I said I would be. I promised I would post another journal entry when I got there, and here it is! I would have posted this yesterday, but seeing as I didn't sleep at ALL on Monday night (I didn't get any sleep for nearly 36 hours), I was very worn out and in no mood to post a journal yesterday. Yesterday was a VERY long day indeed. We got sidetracked on our trip to the airport in Charlotte as the website we looked up to find directions gave us wrong directions (it told us to go to where freight and other cargo is shipped out...). Luckily, we did make it to the airport in time and my mother and I flew out to Chicago without a hitch...until we arrived at O'Hare airport, where we promptly spent about 45 minutes on the tarmac because the plane that was supposed to leave the gate we were to arrive at was behind schedule. From there, we flew to Syracuse (on an overly cramped plane, I should add), where my aunt picked us up from the airport. And so, I'm in New York now!

As I anticipated, my grandmother isn't doing so well. She is indeed receiving hospice care (a man came by last night to drop off some medicine for her), and she is currently using an oxygen machine to help her breathe. It's pretty obvious she's not got all that much longer to live...But, at the very least, she's not afraid of dying. I just hope she's not in absolute agony when she eventually does pass...And my grandfather isn't much better either. I have mentioned in my past couple of journal entries that he is incredibly senile and has basically become Grandpa Simpson...Well, it's one thing to hear about it and a totally different thing to see it in person. Grandpa recognized me when he saw me, but he didn't know what my name was. Last night, around midnight, he tried to leave the house to go visit his mother...who has been dead for about 30 years now. He couldn't find the bathroom (the next room over from his bedroom) when he was getting ready for bed. His mind is almost totally gone now. He has also developed a habit of taking things that don't belong to him without knowing they're not his...my cousin has actually put up a gate in his bedroom to keep him out as he has tried to steal his keys! This morning, he tried to take my pants I wore yesterday and wear them himself...Things aren't exactly pretty around here, I'm sad to say.

On the positive side of things, however, I haven't witnessed any fights between family members like I feared I would...so far, it seems like my aunts, uncles, and cousins (at least, the ones that I've seen so far) are making an effort to get along in this situation. So that's good to see. Also, I have been talking with my cousin (who I once used to write stories with before I wrote "Story of Ralph" a few years back), who is an avid hiker (he's already climbed a bunch of mountains over the past few years...including all of the Catskill high peak mountains). He and I have decided that while I'm up here to take a day hiking trip up one of the Catskills. Though I'm not in the best of shape (and I also have bad feet, as I've mentioned before), I would like to give it a try, so that is something for me to look forward. Maybe you'll see pictures of that...we'll wait and see. But at the very least, this trip up here isn't going to be entirely depressing.

Well, I thought I would at least keep you guys up to date on what's going on with me now since I'm in New York. As I said in my last journal entry, I'll still be around here the next few weeks, but don't expect me to post a whole lot. And for the time being, I've put all screencaps and collages on hold until I get back (plus, I won't be writing anything until I get back), so it will be a little while before you see anything more from me...
  • Mood: Apprehensive
  • Listening to: Procol Harum-The Dead Man's Dream (1970)
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: A television
  • Playing: Pokemon Blue
  • Eating: Flintstones Chewable Morphine
  • Drinking: Some kind of liquid substance...
In my last journal, I discussed how my grandmother had been admitted to the hospital as she hadn't been feeling well, and it was suspected that she may have colon cancer. Well...we've since received the worst possible news we could have heard: Grandma does indeed have colon cancer. Stage 4 colon cancer, at that-the most advanced stage of cancer. And sadly, there is nothing that can be done for her. Her cancer is terminal. She's going to be sent home from the hospital and spend what little time she has left in her life at home receiving hospice care. We're not sure how much longer she has left, but it's safe to say, by this time next year, she won't be around any longer :( This is definitely not the news I wanted to hear...

And so, my mother and I have decided to fly up to New York where Grandma and the rest of her family live to visit her before she dies. Today, we booked plane tickets to fly there. My father will be taking us to Charlotte-Douglas Airport up in Charlotte early Tuesday morning (he won't be going himself because, as I've mentioned before, he and my grandmother have never gotten along well at all, and he definitely would not enjoy the visit). From there, we'll fly to O'Hare in Chicago, then change planes and head for Syracuse Hancock Airport, where we'll be picked up by one of my mother's family members. We'll be spending a few days with Grandma before heading home again (not sure how many). I do plan to take my laptop with me, so there's a good chance you'll still hear from me while I'm away (I'll probably post another journal after I've arrived in New York), but if I'm not around much next week, I hope you'll understand...

There's a part of me that's kind of excited to see my family again as it's been a long time since I've seen the overwhelming majority of them, but it's still going to be a rather depressing trip knowing this is almost certainly going to be the last time I see my grandmother alive. And considering that my mother's family has become rather fragmented over the past several years, I'm kind of worried thinking about what unpleasant things I might see happen up there...
  • Mood: Sadness
  • Listening to: Gentle Giant-The House, The Street, The Room ('71)
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: A television
  • Playing: Pokemon Blue
  • Eating: Flintstones Chewable Morphine
  • Drinking: Some kind of liquid substance...
Another Adorable Melissa Raccoon Collage by GoodCaptainClack
Another Adorable Melissa Raccoon Collage
Those of you who've been following me for most of my time here on dA will remember how nearly three years ago (wow, has it been that long already?) I made a whole series of photo collages featuring the prominent Raccoons characters. Well, I have plenty of screencaps lying around on my computer, so I figured...why not make a few more? I had more than enough adorable screencaps of Melissa Raccoon to make another collage of her, and so, here it is! (You'll probably also see another Bert and another Ralph collage soon as well)...

Anyways...Melissa is one of my favorite characters from the show (in fact, I think now she might be my favorite character on the whole show). I'm sure that's a big shock to those of you who know me well :D Melissa is the wife of Ralph Raccoon, and she is the Evergreen Standard's ace photographer. She's generally a more serious and mature woman, although at times she can be pretty snarky (I think back to "Monster Mania" where she teases Ralph by taking a photo of him while he's all upset about the monster craze and calling it "Portrait of a Jealous Man" :D) However, she's also shown to be rather sweet, and she definitely has a very big heart. She has no qualms with helping others who are in trouble, and she clearly cares dearly about her Evergreen Forest home and her loved ones who live there ("Picture Perfect"). She's also shown to be a very forgiving woman...look at how quickly she forgives her husband when he goes off his rocker trying to bring the Standard up to date in the hopes of winning an award in "Paper Chase", and when he nearly gets himself killed trying to impress her in "The Sky's The Limit". She's definitely a strong woman, and I can't help but admire her character. She has my pick for "cutest character on the show" (seriously, look at half these images and tell me she's not adorable :D), and she and Ralph have my pick for "cutest couple ever" (again, that's a big shock :D).

It's a shame Melissa (and Ralph as well) wasn't featured as prominently as she perhaps should have been. She is one of the three titular raccoons of the show, after all...and she and Ralph weren't featured as prominently as Bert. Melissa only has a handful of episodes in which she plays a really major role ("Picture Perfect" being her most prominent role). There are quite a few episodes in which she and Ralph are just...there (especially so in the last season, where the two of them started to be pushed aside in favor of Bentley and Lisa). I'm not entirely sure as to why the two of them were underused...Perhaps the writers weren't sure how to use them effectively. Or maybe they figured that since the two of them were portrayed as being generally more mature and sensible-and thus, not needing to learn as many lessons as, say, Bert or Bentley-they were less interesting characters and thus didn't need to be featured as prominently. Whatever the reason, I wish they had been featured more often...it's a shame the Pigs got more screentime than them! I also feel that Melissa is rather underrated by the fandom...of the three most prominent female characters, she's definitely the least popular; Sophia and Lisa certainly have more fans. I'm curious as to why she's the least popular...I kind of get the feeling that at least some of it may have to do with the fact that she's less anthropomorphic than Lisa or Sophia (which is a very shallow reason to prefer one character over another...)

Anyways, I hope you all like this collage! Unlike last time, I'm not going to be holding any challenge to see if anyone can guess which episodes these screencaps come from, but if you can guess all 11 correctly, I will give you a cookie! :D

The Raccoons (C) Skywriter Media & Entertainment Group
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You will perhaps remember how I stated in my last journal entry that my grandmother had mostly been stable since we got here (she had gotten a little bit worse since my mother and I arrived in New York, but I didn't think she had gotten that much worse). Unfortunately, things have significantly taken a turn for the worse. Early this morning...Grandma passed away at the age of 74 :(

I mentioned how Grandma had been sleeping for the past couple of days in my last journal; but yesterday she really took a nose dive. Her breathing became much more labored; she was barely even breathing at all. She barely even reacted to the medicine the hospice care brought to try to help her. My aunts and several of my cousins were convinced that she was going to die that day...my mother, my uncles, and myself didn't think she was going to die right yet. Nonetheless, before I went to bed, at the insistence of my aunt and cousin, I said goodbye to Grandma. I didn't really know what to say at all...saying goodbye to my mother's dog a couple of years ago was hard enough, but saying goodbye to my own Grandmother easily dwarfed that. I stumbled around for words and basically told her that I would always remember her, and that whatever happened to her, she would be okay (I'm not entirely convinced there's an actual afterlife, but seeing that I knew my Grandma believed in one, I figured that was something she would want to hear). So far, that has been the hardest thing I've ever done in my life...Not too long after I went to bed, Grandma passed away peacefully.

I knew Grandma was in bad shape seeing as she had stage 4 colon cancer and it had already spread to her other organs, but I definitely did not anticipate her passing away while I was up here visiting for the last time...The fact that I saw my grandmother basically in her dying moments is something that is always going to stick with me as long as I live, and it's most certainly not a pleasant memory. Unfortunately, that's life...I think we will all witness people we love and care about dying before our eyes at some point or other in our lives. It's just something that happens to everyone; you can't really avoid it...The thing that bothers me the most is that Grandpa never got to say goodbye to her (although seeing how he is suffering from senile and is more or less Grandpa Simpson now, I'm not sure what he would have said...), and when my mother told him that his wife passed on, he basically had no reaction. He didn't know what to say; he didn't even seem to understand. He had no reaction at all. How horrible it must be to not even understand something terrible happened to your loved one...:(

The rest of my family (save for me, Grandpa, and my mother) has left the house to make funeral arrangements. Grandma is to be cremated (as she wished), and this coming spring her ashes will be spread out over one of her favorite spots. This weekend, my mother's family will have a toast to my Grandmother's life. I can't help but worry that things will turn ugly at the toast tomorrow...While my grandmother's illness brough my mother's whole family back together for the first time in years, a few nasty things have been said and I dread that things will get ugly over the money...As for me and my mother's travel plans...we're still scheduled to head back home on Monday...

You would probably expect that I'd be crying my eyes out over my Grandmother's passing, but I'm not. I do feel rather sad inside, but I also just feel...well...blank inside. I don't really know how to feel at all. Is it normal to feel like that...?
  • Mood: Depressed
  • Listening to: Jethro Tull-Life Is A Long Song
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: A television
  • Playing: Pokemon Blue
  • Eating: Flintstones Chewable Morphine
  • Drinking: Some kind of liquid substance...

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GoodCaptainClack's Profile Picture
GoodCaptainClack
Bryan E.
Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
United States
A few little random factoids about me:
Birthday: April 1, 1992 (I really AM an April Fool's Day joke!)
Birthplace: Oakland Naval Hospital, Oakland, CA (I just looked it up and it no longer exists. Huh.)
Hometown: Visalia, CA
Current residence: Somewhereland, SC (will not reveal real town name)
Where would I ideally like to live: Somewhere in Virginia (I've been through there before. Some really beautiful country there! What can I say, I'm a fool for the country (sorry Foghat))

I am a mysterious enigma of the Internet...

I am a strange human being indeed. My three main interests are cartoons, classic rock, and motorsports. I told you I was weird.

I'm a semi-accomplished writer. Still trying to work on getting better...

Just one note: Although I appreciate positive feedback on my stories, please, do not request me to write anything for you. Due to my past experience with requests, I do NOT accept them under any circumstances. I MAY take ideas and suggestions to be used WITHIN stories, but if you request me to write a specific story for you, I will say no, no matter how nicely you ask me to do it for you. Really, I feel more comfortable writing what I want to write over what other people might want me to write. I am also willing to accept constructive criticism of my stories, but any and all flames of my stories will be removed. I really do not wish to read those.

Also I'm named after...Bryan Adams. I feel ashamed...
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:iconfredvegerano:
fredvegerano Featured By Owner Edited Oct 9, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank  you  my  friend for the favorite!!!
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:iconcptdaniel:
CptDaniel Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2014
Thx the fav!
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:iconmslizshadow:
MsLizShadow Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014  Student Photographer
Hi! Can I join your RalphxMelissaFan group? ;)
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:icondavid31:
David31 Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks for the fav. :)
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:iconchopfe:
Chopfe Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
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:icongoodcaptainclack:
GoodCaptainClack Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
"Well, that's what we tell ourselves, isn't it, Boomhauer?"

But yeah, Boomhauer can be rather intelligent and deep if you can actually understand what he's saying :D I remember this little speech of his from that two-parter where the Mega-Lo Mart blew up, pretty creative and funny to see someone turned it into its' own song! Hell, I didn't even mind the fact that it's auto-tuned (I usually HATE auto-tune)!
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:icondavid31:
David31 Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks or the fav. :)
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:iconedges-to-everything:
Edges-to-Everything Featured By Owner May 30, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Hi, Bryan! :handshake: I came across your Profile thanks to the Random Deviant feature. I hope you are having a great day/night! :nod:

- Michael

 
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:iconrkerekes13:
rkerekes13 Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2014
Happy Birthday1 :)
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:iconkrdoz:
KrDoz Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2014
Happy birthday!
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