Sunday, May 19, 2013

God is Dog

Yesterday I was in a mood. I was back from the beach and it was raining. Plus the last day of vacation had been really rough. We got news my grandfather was sick. He had been losing fluid and they took him to the hospital. Ordinarily, this would be no biggie except he is ninety-five. The one doc said my Pop Pop had just twenty four hours. The other gave him a week. Of course my mom is at the beach and is freaking out that she is not with her dad during this emergency. She would have left except there were no real flights out that day from where we were. Then they said something about sending my grandfather to Hospice and my mom was a wreck on the beach. We ended up calling my Pop Pop and she spoke to him. That was a good thing because it made her feel better. This was extra special because my grandmother had died only six weeks before. Of course last Sunday was Mother's Day and Monday would have been her parent's sixty third wedding anniversary.

We got some news that my grandfather was starting to fill with fluid, which my sister explained that his kidney's were working. Still it has been a rough spring for my mother. She lost her mother, broke her arm, and one of her jobs fired her because in between bereavement and injury she had a ton of subs. This pissed me off because my mom was good to these people. My mom is the sweetest, most gentle woman on the face of the planet. It hurts me when people are mean to her. However my mom kind of hated the job because it was on Saturday, and now she has her Saturday's back to spend with her dad. And then usually my dad goes and spends time with his mom and you get the picture. Aging parents.

In between all of that my sister and brother are graduating, finally, next weekend. I would have to say Brenna or the fictional Skipper or as I call her, Dr. Sco, is a good kid overall. She is a helpful, guiding, kind spirit who is going to work in the emergency room as a doctor in Tennessee. My brother Billy or the fictional Wendell is finally getting his MD/PhD. Both are my guests next weekend at my book signing. It is exciting and nerve wracking all at once. When I plan an event I am usually up for days and annoy everyone. But my sister is also promoting. I am teaching her how to promote which is pretty funny. We are talking daily on how to promote. Next weekend my mother might be wearing a chicken suit. My family is crazy I know.

On top of that I sometimes get hung up about how everything seems to be harder for me with my career. Some of it is because I have a prop. Some of it is because I am a woman. And what annoys me sometimes is when male comedians seemingly have their careers handed to them with little or no work at all. I know this thought is only somewhat true and they have things that they have to deal with on their end. Everyone does. But there is nothing like the joy of being slighted for a male headliner who hasn't been on TV in years because he is a bully. There is nothing like being hidden to the end of the show as not to offend the male headliner. There is nothing like a booker trying to sleep with you because he thinks you are an open pair of legs. Stay in the corner woman. Continue speaking your victimese.

Of course as a woman writer there are even more things I have to deal with. When it comes to other women writers there is a strike against me because I am not a whiner. I don't blame my father for all my problems. I don't bitch and moan about being unloved as a child. I didn't grow up in a shack. My book is funny. I like it when people laugh and smile when they read my work. Women writers always want this breakdown and want a Goddamn award for being a martyr. To tell you the truth, I really don't like women writers sometimes. Did I mention I am fluent in victimese?

Then again, when I am overwhelmed and have had a rough twenty four hours I really don't like anyone.

Just as I was about to run into someone so I could accidentally deck someone I decided to get some iced cream. Sure it would put weight on me making me go from a miserable bitch to a fat miserable bitch. Just as I was entering my house I saw my neighbor's dog Otis running down the stairs. Usually I pet Otis when I see him. But I was not prepared for this. Usually Otis is on a leash but maybe his owner had unlocked the door and he had accidentally gotten out. While I have gotten better, I am deathly afraid of dogs.

Yes I had a dog once upon a time as a kid. But when I had her she was old and feeble. Shortly after Snapper died I had a terrible run in with a friend's dog. This family had a dog they didn't train that would just bite people. While it never bit me it tried. I was eight and from that time on dogs and I just didn't mix. However there are two I like in my building: George and Otis. Both are gentle creatures and wouldn't hurt anyone.

Anyway, when my neighbor saw I was alarmed he quickly leashed his dog and apologized. Because it was quiet he assumed no one was there. I told him it was okay, Otis was a good dog. My neighbor could still see I was shaken. I ended up petting Otis and he commanded that Otis gave me a paw. It took a few times cause you know dogs. Anyway, finally Otis gave me a paw.

It was the sweetest thing in the world. It was like this dog was shaking my hand. This was so incredibly endearing. Any alarming feeling and and any fear of our canine companions I had melted away. The strain of the day before with my grandfather melted away. The April being her ambitious basketcase self disappeared. As for the miserable bitch, she had no place in this equation. Like the Wicked Witch of the West she melted. I didn't feel stressed about the signing event next weekend. It was going to be alright. I was going to be alright. I had Otis and I was shaking his paw.

I complimented my neighbor on how kind his dog was and how well behaved. Of course Otis is a big bull dog so it was pretty funny. My neighbor informed me now Otis and I were friends and he would protect me always. Then my neighbor, who is gay, told me I looked pretty. I know he wasn't lying which was cool. And it was nice of him to say. Not to mention I am now in love with his dog.

Off Otis went for his walk and suddenly I felt better. It is amazing how animals are smarter than humans on so many levels. It's amazing how they know how to get to our hearts. It's amazing how we complicate our lives and they do something silly not only making us smile, but making us realize that it isn't that serious. Maybe they don't talk, but they know.

I once met a man in my travels who was kind of whacky who said, "I don't like a lot of people and would much rather spend time with my dog."

There were only two times I ever saw my dad cry. Once when his older sister passed away, and the second when our family dog passed. My dad is a man's man. But Snapper was their first child. She was with them when my dad completed law school and then was around the house when we were born. Snapper always had free reign. Although they put her to sleep, she was so sick she couldn't move.

People are protective of animals. They want to throw the book at people who hurt them. I used to think animal rights people were crazy but now I understand. Who would want to hurt Snapper? Who would want to hurt Otis?

I think I want a dog someday. I think it would make me feel better. Not just to have someone else in the house, but also, why not? Dogs are man's best friend. They never leave you for a prettier owner and when the sky seems dark they let you know it's gonna be alright.

I am not preaching religion. I don't know what is upstairs. It could be Jesus. Maybe it is Allah, perhaps Buddah, or He Who Walks Behind the Rows. But I suppose there is a reason God spelled backwards is Dog.



I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Paperback available on Amazon and 877-Buy-Book
E-Book available on Kindle and Nook
Audiobook available on itunes and Audible this Spring
Portion of proceeds go to Greenpeace

PS. Book signing at Brown Bookstore Saturday May 25 from 4-6. Be there or be square

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