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Saturday, October 16, 2021

Dogs and Dreams

NEVER, EVER read a book where the dog dies at the end. OR worse yet, 50 pages in from the end. What's the deal? Perhaps this sappy but previously considered imaginative and kind of talented author needed to spend the final pages having every damn species (including orangutans and elephants) paying teary but dramatically regal homage to their beloved fallen brother (whether they knew him or not).

The book was a dystopian fairytale with some horror mixed in but killing the dog made no fucking sense. It didn’t advance the plot and just felt like a cheap, tits–on–a–boar–hog addition to the story.

I have questions:

  1. Was she being paid by the word and found herself jammed up for ideas on how to meet her quota?
  2. Was she trying to win the animal soap opera set? Was there also a big white animal wedding but her editors cut that for being too over the top?
  3. Did they demand ‘kill off a beloved character. Make the readers cry or the deal’s off.’
  4. Did this start as a dark Sesame Street movie idea but the producers stipulated that, 'if you make the kids cry, you gotta go over the damn top to make them feel good again.'
  5. There’s the old saying, don’t make an author angry—they’ll kill you off in their next book. Did a dog do her wrong and this is her way of getting back at it?

Hell’s bells, I don’t even like dogs and my eyes were leaking until she totally overdid the dog funeral shit. It also made certain I'll never read anything by her again. EVER.

AND I dream dead people. 

Numero Uno: I was pregnant but hadn’t known it. Yes I’m 63 but in the dream a coquettish fertile 60. I was in town and made an emergency stop at the Brigham for my incredible stomach pain. That twarn’t no tummy discomfort, that was a healthy red haired and blue eyed bambina.

In this sleepy time movieola, I was thrilled to bits. TAB was the father. I called to tell him the odd news (at 77 he became a daddy!). I then called Hillel—come see, come see!

I marveled over her eyes. SO blue—just like my father’s. The ginger hair was exquisite if mystifying—neither TAB nor I were/are redheads.

Numero dos: I was at my parent’s wee cottage in Western Pennsylvania where I’d turned their old bedroom into a studio. Outside, a monster blizzard was underway. Suddenly my old chum Tom walked through the door. I squealed ‘you’re not dead, you’re not dead!’ 

He explained to me that his death had been faked for some reason that I couldn’t quite grasp. He and his wife were on the run…kind of. He wanted to stop by to say hi and talk about my paintings with me. We had a phenomenal yet brief chat and he was on his way, back into the storm. I rushed out to his car to ask one last question—would I see him again? Yes but not much and he couldn’t say where or when.

I hate mysteries.


  1. I don't know about that dog book, but I'd know a James Thurber puppy anywhere. I grew up reading him and still peruse his collections occasionally (and they still make me laugh).