On Being Manly

I’m still sorting pictures for the photo contest. The process got slowed down a little bit because Sarah and Oot got home on the 2nd, and I’ve been trying to hang out with them as much as possible before I leave for ComicCon in a week.

Sarah had a lot of stories about their vacation. They saw a bear, they went bowling for the first time, they went to some hot springs….

Oot had a different perspective on the the ten days he spent in Colorado.

He said he saw a machine with a green button and a yellow button. Then he sang me the song he’d learned while he was away (“On Top of Spaghetti”). Lastly, he asked if I’d like to see his “penis trick.”

I said I would like to see it, and was kinda relieved to discover it was just him dancing and jumping around naked.

Note to future Oot: Odds are, by the time you’re in highschool, the internet will have morphed into something new and terrifying, which means people will use it all the time and nobody will read text blogs anymore.

If you read this anyway, and you are embarrassed and angry at me for sharing this little story, just remember. I could have put up a video, but I didn’t. This is because I love you.

Then we had cake.

Why is there a tree on the cake? Because we told Oot it was a black forest cake. He said, “with trees?”

So yeah. That makes sense. It really should have trees, shouldn’t it?

The night after they got home, a bat somehow found its way into our house. Specifically, it found its way into Sarah and Oot’s room. Sarah discovered it around 3:30 AM, then came to get me.

Why? Well, I am the man of the house. I am powerful. Puissant even. I am an international bestselling author, after all. A warrior. A magician. A hero…

Anyway, the point is that bats at 3:30 are part of my job description, so she came to get me so I could deal with it.

This led to an exciting hour’s worth of adventure. Which in turn led to me sharing the following story on Facebook.

I just managed to catch a bat that had somehow gotten into my house.

I would like to reassure you all that I was extremely brave and manly through the whole process. At no point did I dive to the ground, flinch and hide my face, or emit anything resembling a high-pitched squeak.

It will help if you picture me as equal parts Crocodile Hunter (except I was up against an animal that’s pretty much the same as a mouse) James Bond (except I have a beard) and Clint Eastwood (except I was using a powder-blue bed sheet instead of a gun.)

Suffice to say I have defended my home, my woman, and my child. And I did it with considerable composure and panache.

The main reason I mention this is because a couple hours ago, someone sent me a picture they drew, memorializing the event, and I wanted to share it with y’all….

(You should really click to embiggen it.)


That was exactly what it was like. Exactly.


This entry was posted in being awesome, day in the life, OotBy Pat73 Responses


  1. lucodyne
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 10:51 AM | Permalink

    Obviously an accurate representation of the bat-capturing.

  2. senkura
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 10:52 AM | Permalink

    I now happily imagine that you spend half your time upon great outcroppings of rock, majestically bearded and against a suitably dramatic sky, the powder-blue bed sheet worn as a cape, your fist raised to the sky in case that accursed bat ever dares darken your doorway again.

    Keep your vigil, mighty sir.

  3. jab1972
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 10:54 AM | Permalink

    “pretty much the same as a mouse”

    Don’t sell yourself short. It’s a mouse with wings!

    Also, in all seriousness, the public health professional in me is compelled to inform you that waking up with a bat in a bedroom is considered a possible exposure to the rabies virus. You should call your doc or the local public health agency.

    • jab1972
      Posted July 5, 2012 at 10:56 AM | Permalink
    • lilacmoon71
      Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

      I was going to suggest the same thing. Bats have VERY sharp teeth and you may not know that you have been bitten. Especially with little ones that always seem to have an assortment of scrapes and bumps. I know that the animal lovers won’t like it, but you should have kept the bat. It is easier to test the bat than go through the rabies shots.

      • lilacmoon71
        Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

        Oops, correction on the test the bat part. Guess I should have checked jab1972s link before posting.

        • Jam
          Posted July 5, 2012 at 6:53 PM | Permalink

          Thanks for the link jab1972. I thought the link said you should always keep the bat for testing?

    • DrFood
      Posted July 8, 2012 at 9:24 PM | Permalink

      dear blog readers:

      Pat posted on Facebook today that he’s getting the rabies shots. Just in case you’ve come back here, worried about losing your favorite author to foaming madness, and you’re not a Facebook reader.

  4. LordZod
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

    So if, in Book 3, Kvothe faces off against Giant Bat Thing (that’s its name and, coincidentally, a pretty basic but apt description), which is one of the Chandrian’s dark (but not evil, GBT is loveable, as Kvothe will struggle heroically (with a threadbare, baby blue bedsheet which formerly held his belongings) to find out) emissaries. After the heroic battle, which results in the fall of a kingdom, and civil war in several minor principalities, Kvothe will ride on the Wind (whose name is “Kevin”) with GBT to avenge his parents in the epic conclusion of the Chronicles… Then we’ll know that this was a Night-in-Wisconsin that other Nights-in-Wisconsin fear to even think about, much less mention, for fear of its awesome epicness.

  5. IvoryDoom
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    Yah I’m going with Sarah on this one – Bat’s are for men to handle LOL.
    Last year actually was the first time I really looked at a bat, since I saw a dead one on the road, and even though it sounds sort of weird – they’re kinda interesting to look at…ya know, when you dont have to fear for your life. Creepy little things.

    And – Oot is sooo cute! LOL. I’m glad we get to see a new picture of him, he’s a little boy now.

    Man – I never wanted kids in my life, but ever since I turned 25 I will say, children have some how increased exponentially in cuteness and now invoke constant “ahh’s” whenever I see them….ugh.

    Oh yah – and lastly, that picture is pretty epic. I think artist credit is due…and not to sound overly interested but I’d love to know the medium if said artist happens to be on the blog LOL.

  6. Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    “pat v bat”
    He was trying to replace you in your family, if he just turned the first letter of his name upside down he would have succeeded. What he didn’t count on was your heroism. With your Blue Sheet of Smiting +12 you not only defended your home, woman and son, but your position as father as well.

    • Robothell
      Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:48 PM | Permalink

      A p upside down would be a d. Sorry, the nerd in me just wouldn’t let it go :/

      • IvoryDoom
        Posted July 5, 2012 at 2:20 PM | Permalink

        …that would be upside down and reversed wouldnt it?

        I too feel a compulsion!

        • fitzG
          Posted July 5, 2012 at 2:58 PM | Permalink

          It depends if the bat could muster the strength to flip the letter end to end. In all likelihood, the best it could do would be to rotate it, in which case it would become ‘qat.’

          • MTimonin
            Posted July 5, 2012 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

            Whereupon it would win Scrabble and the righteous enmity of all the other players.

          • Theodora
            Posted July 6, 2012 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

            AJ, you meant the “b”, right? So bat wold become pat?

          • IvoryDoom
            Posted July 6, 2012 at 5:44 PM | Permalink


            I challenge the word qat until proven definition…

  7. Blarghedy
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    So I know you’re realizing this all the time, Pat, but you apparently have the weirdest, coolest, and most talented fans ever.

  8. Kay
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:24 AM | Permalink

    Rude question- Sarah and Oot’s room? Do you not share a room? I now open the floor for someone to tell me off for prying.

    • IvoryDoom
      Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

      Meh – My parents never shared a room for sleeping. My dad snored too loud for my mother to ever get any rest and he would always be in and out of bed at weird times which woke her up. She was a light sleeper.

      But, my guess would be Oot is still getting used to having his own room. My nephew still wont sleep the whole night in his own room unless mommy or daddy are laying with him….

      Oh and lastly – since you asked for it. :P

      Who cares? As long as Pat and Sarah are happy, run your relationship however it works best for the both.

      I personally used to keep a seperate room for myself from my old man, since sometimes my back goes out and sleeping with him is NOT condusive to injury LOL. Now I have roomies – so on those days he just sleeps on the couch….

      • Posted July 5, 2012 at 7:30 PM | Permalink

        Yeah. Sarah and Oot share a room and a bed. I have my own room with my own bed.

        It works well because I keep strange hours, so we don’t interfere with each other’s sleeping. Plus, we each have our own private space.

        • sesenta y cuatro
          Posted July 6, 2012 at 4:13 AM | Permalink

          “What for, silly hobbit? They are young, they are tender, they are nice. Eat them, eat them!” He clawed at the nearest rabbit, already skinned and lying by the fire.
          “Now, now! ” said Sam. “Each to his own fashion.”

  9. justajenjen
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    Aww, poor bat. Bats are cute and they eat bugs that bite me, which makes them awesome in my book.

    I think the weirdest animal I ever encountered where it was not supposed to be was the snapping turtle in the girl’s locker room in high school. There was a pond out at the edge of the school property and when it was hot, we left the locker room door opened. I guess the turtle wanted to come lay on the cool concrete floor.

    Oot is such a cutie. His hair is beautiful. And yes, trees on cakes are awesome.

  10. Amstrad
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

    Yep, that more or less looks just about what my previous encounters (yes, twice! possible the same bat?) with a bat in the living room looked like. Replacing the bedsheet for an identicaly colored plastic laundry bin however.

  11. SevenWords
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    Man against bat, the most terrifying tale. Painting shows your moment of glory, though.

  12. leitmotiv
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    Bats are more closely related to lemurs than they are mice. But yeah they do look like distant cousins!

  13. Constance
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    I am trying my best not to burst into laughter while at my place of employment. Penis trick almost had me. Epic picture REALLY had me.

    You need to have a third done of you and Amber Benson and then we can have a tryptich of artwork of this, the Clown-Sweater Kitten-pegasus Wil versus Orc Scalzi and the Epic Bat Fight. Or we’ll use Romance-Art Wil + Felicia instead of Amber Benson.

  14. Nymirah
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:07 PM | Permalink

    That picture is completely inaccurate… it was a POWDER BLUE sheet, he said.

  15. Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

    I love it! The way small boys think is so amazing! I have a three year old son and they are really fun to be around. Glad you are enjoying having Oot home, I can’t imagin my little man being away that long.

  16. Bob78164
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:10 PM | Permalink

    All that’s missing is the caption, “You . . . shall . . . not . . . pass!”

    • Howland
      Posted July 5, 2012 at 2:18 PM | Permalink

      Maybe something more like:

      “I have talked to gods, loved women, and defeated bats with bed cloth. You may have heard of me….”

  17. ccceto
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    If only they had drawn you as you appeared at that convention, with cat ears and paws, prancing about merrily. Then, perhaps, they could have given the bat a long, naked tail, and the battle would have been…

    CatPat vs. RatBat.

    And all the Martians would laugh in amusement: ack ack ack ack ack!!

    I apologize if this wasn’t very punny.

  18. leaf101
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 1:40 PM | Permalink

    I have a feeling that Oot’s repertoire of “tricks” are going to multiply in his teenage years…

  19. Mike H
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 2:34 PM | Permalink

    I was about to comment: “Since when has Oot been so damn big???”

    …but then I realized that I am sitting in an office wearing a suit and tie. Since when have I been so damn big? :(

    • Posted July 5, 2012 at 8:04 PM | Permalink

      Yeah. When the hell did we *all* get so big?

      • Brenchapitas
        Posted July 20, 2012 at 2:17 PM | Permalink

        Time goes by… But we remain young at heart. (Or so I like to think)

  20. voy
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

    Hey Pat,
    Here`s a girl from the Black Forest!
    Best wishes from far far away, to the great and the little fighters! ;)

    I’m almost sure, we don`t have any trees on our cakes, but even if we had some, they had to be black. And the cherries ? Where are the cherries ? (I`m just joking, congratulations to the baker, your Black Forest cake looks quite similar to its ount in the window at the bakery in our neighbourhood! Just hope you didn`t so much cherry-schnaps into, like they do it here, whuudllnt be shhoo goth fohr lidddl kidhs :D And it is such a cool idea to put a tree onto the cream!!! :D )
    And then this epic fight against this creature of the night. :D hihihi

    – Greetings to you, I am so happy when I´m reading through your posts. They make me smile. And when I´m loud louthing, my little doughter comes and asks me what happend. Today I can tell her a story about a black forest cake, from faaaaar faaaar away. (That`s soo cool!)

    Thank you for your words,

  21. RodriArgentino
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 3:27 PM | Permalink

    Here you have a truly bat hunter.


    Love your books.

  22. Gavin
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 3:50 PM | Permalink

    Patrick the great stripped of coin, key, and candle said to the stone break and the stone broke then he jumped from the tower in pursuit of the mighty bat beast and then Patrick the great knowing the names of all things called the name of the wind to slow his fall and bring the mighty bat to the earth. But the name of the wind was not enough on its on to subdue this mighty foe. However being Patrick the great and knowing the names of all things he called fire and lighting to dazzle and frighten the bat beast then he called out its true name speaking it hard and sharp then soft and slow lulling it. Now Patrick the great knowing the names of all things did not want to kill something that he understood so he changed its hidden nature and released it back into the wild.

  23. Little My
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 6:48 PM | Permalink

    That’s a great picture. Except now I’m worried, because it looks like your house is on fire.

  24. Jam
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 6:58 PM | Permalink

    I never realised bats have tails like that.

  25. Bartb11
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    Darn right I would wake up the man of the house to take care of the bat!! And any large spider I see in the middle of the night (I do however, take care of small spiders on my own). Thanks for sharing Pat, love especially seeing how BIG Oot is these days.

    And seriously, I WANT some o that delicious-looking CAKE! YUM!

    • IvoryDoom
      Posted July 6, 2012 at 10:55 AM | Permalink

      I agree, I’ve never tried Black Forest Cake, but it looks very delicious!

      Did you guys bake that yourselves?

  26. Keith
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 7:24 PM | Permalink

    The Name of the Bat, Bat Man’s Fear, Bats bats bats

  27. O. Isacoa
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

    When I look at that picture I imagine you whipping the blanket in 300-esque slow mo, thunder and lighting cracking in the distance while rhythmic death metal plays in the background.

  28. SporkTastic
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 8:35 PM | Permalink

    It was truly an epic battle. Song will be sung. Stories will be told. Future generations will look back upon the day with awe and splendor.

  29. Mellitus
    Posted July 5, 2012 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    On top of spaghetti
    All covered in cheese
    I watched my poor meatball
    Get hauled off by fleas

    They passed by the taters
    And got on a spoon
    And then my poor meatball
    Was launched to the moon

    Now all of the space fleas
    They smile and they nod
    As they offer thanks to
    Their meatbally god!

  30. Mantra
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 1:53 AM | Permalink

    I think that would have to be one of the better perks of being an international best selling author… The super cool things your fans do for you, such as drawing you in a majestic battle with a bat.

  31. Posted July 6, 2012 at 4:59 AM | Permalink

    As a child I was also thoroughly confused at the concept of “black forest cake”. The picture is fantastic!

  32. guessingo
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 8:52 AM | Permalink

    You should have thrown a kegger when the family was out of town. You had 7 days of freedom. I am joking Pat. I am about the same age as you.

  33. Piccadilly
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    How us Oot pronounced? Is it hsi fullname? I’m really curious about that :)

    • Piccadilly
      Posted July 6, 2012 at 9:52 AM | Permalink

      Missspelling because of phone! (just so you know…)

      • eldrelore
        Posted July 6, 2012 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

        His full name is something else. So that he can have a life other than a celebrity baby when he grows up. And to to decrease the likelihood of having someone steal his identity and, I don’t know, take out college loans for him to pay back or something.

        That being said I think Oot rhymes with Root and Boot. But I can’t find where Pat answer that question though, so this so I could be wrong.

        • Oatmeal
          Posted July 7, 2012 at 4:09 AM | Permalink

          Yup. Exactly. They’ve been calling him Oot since he was in utero.
          And yeah, it’s pronounced like boot without the B…

          • Piccadilly
            Posted July 9, 2012 at 3:26 PM | Permalink

            Very sensible :)

  34. ripshin
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 10:36 AM | Permalink

    I’m really disappointed…I was expecting an “achievement unlocked”. If ever there was (or is it “were”???) a time for one of these, this would be it!

    By the way, I had the exact same experience years ago…only I used a broom to knock it down and stun it, then scooped it up and threw it outside. My wife still teases me about the fact that, apparently, I kept saying (in my sleepen stupor) “It’s fine. It’s fine. I’ll get it in the morning.” (To clarify, a “sleepen stupor” produces a similar behavior as a drunken stupor, but without the hangover…)


    • Posted July 6, 2012 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

      (Formal is: “If ever there were”. Informal: “If ever there was.” source. )

      Good point… I think it’d be cool if fans could also get unlocked achievements. Nerdy stuff to put on shirts…

      – Rescued Innocent person(s) from mostly harmless Malicious Bat. (Art: red-eyed bat that may or may not look like a chupacabra.)

      – Raised a butt-load of cash for a charity. (Art: Upside-down heart? Get it… its a heart, but it really looks like a butt?)

      – Stabbed door/wall with homemade knife (Art: Knife in wall?)

      – Made up a new word. “What a hygapean blog comment on achievements that dork wrote.” (Art: dude staring at a rock.)

      – Met someone that is over 1,000 Gaiman-Day units….

      and onward.

      • Valarya
        Posted July 11, 2012 at 9:31 AM | Permalink

        I like it when people pay attention. I also like the idea of the upside down heart for the charity achi unlock. ;D

  35. DrFood
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 7:50 PM | Permalink

    That’s a lovely boy and a yummy looking cake. Why 13 candles? Does Oot have a half-sibling I haven’t heard about previously?

    • dietl
      Posted July 6, 2012 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

      14 …and there might be one behind the tree ;-)

  36. DrFood
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 10:59 PM | Permalink

    True dat!

    Oot turns 3 in September, I believe.


  37. Noth
    Posted July 7, 2012 at 5:39 AM | Permalink

    I’m no man of the house, by that I’m no man, but when a possum snuck its way into the my friend’s home office, it was put upon me to get it out. Honestly, I just ran in and opened a window and ran out but it was cute none the less.

    • IvoryDoom
      Posted July 9, 2012 at 12:34 PM | Permalink

      No Way…Possums are ugly as hell! We have them all over where I live, and they are super creepy and sort of vicious when they have babies. They have a giant rat faces! But…the babies are sort of cute…I guess.

      Raccoons are also on my list….I had one grab my pants from inside a storm drain…freakiest drunken moment of my life. Those things have real hands….WTF?!

  38. Posted July 7, 2012 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

    I admire your awesome and manly bat hunting skills, but next time you should call a professional bat-trainer, such as that nice Mr Gaiman..

  39. leaf101
    Posted July 7, 2012 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    Hi gus

  40. Thisbe
    Posted July 7, 2012 at 1:05 PM | Permalink

    But seriously, if a person has been asleep, intoxicated, or an unattended child in a room with a bat, post-exposure prophylaxis is recommended. That means that if Sarah woke up in a room with Oot and a bat, Sarah and Oot should go get the shot. Call your public health department to confirm.

    Rabies is not a treatable disease. Approximately six people have survived rabies ever, in the history of medical records, and all of those involved a medically-induced coma. The shots used to be terrible but are now much more reasonable. Once someone starts to have symptoms of rabies it is too late; if exposure is suspected, the time for post-exposure prophylaxis is NOW, because that is the only reliable tool we have.


  41. Thisbe
    Posted July 7, 2012 at 1:09 PM | Permalink

    Also, of course, if a person catching a bat has been bitten or scratched by the bat – or even has open wounds on the hands that might have come in contact with the bat – that person probably ought to consider the post-exposure prophylaxis too.

  42. athos26
    Posted July 7, 2012 at 11:44 PM | Permalink

    I just wanted to second the comments by Thisbe and others suggesting that you contact your doctor and your local health department. Immediately.

    Rabies isn’t something to wait and hope about.

    –Mr. Public Health

  43. roland333
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 3:18 AM | Permalink

    Tis’ a fair representation, tis’. Needs more muscles though.

  44. tlvierra
    Posted July 10, 2012 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    Oh, thank you muchly. This post and the resulting chuckles did much to improve a Bad Day.

  45. johnnybrennan
    Posted July 19, 2012 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    Saw a bat skeleton at a museum once that was blown up to the size of a human. It looked so much like a distorted human that now, when I see a bat, I immediately drop into the fetal position and piss my trousers.

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