Wednesday, October 29, 2008


October 6, 1984 was a special day for me -and if I may be so bold as to stop for a second and inform you, friend, that I'm a sucker for flattery, particularly of the sexy variety- as it was the day our family acquired a new pet, a spunky young Airedale terrier personally selected by yours truly. I should also note that it was kismet that drew me to that specific puppy, and when she licked my face for the very first time, I fully apprehended that impressive events (and equally searing memories) were inevitable.

She was given the name 'Brandy,' by whom I cannot recall, although there is a vague memory of my mother drinking heavily during that period, which may have influenced the decision. Nonetheless, I felt the name appropriate. To this very day I regularly imbibe a bottle (or two) of the aforementioned liquor throughout the month of October, and for good reason: that dog was a part of me, or should I say, she took a part of me and replaced it with something else, but we'll get to that later. I understood her like no one else could and, perhaps, vice versa.

That sounds smug as hell, but I won't apologize; it's just how I feel. It's difficult to think otherwise when you've thrown yourself into something with such fervency and, subsequently, prepped to pop the pimples of hard labor, like I had been.

You may not believe the confession I'm about to make, but the truth is the truth. This is a tale of love. Dig?*

On that day, October 6, 1985, back when the overgrown lad currently chewing the fat of Gleipnir was an even younger boy, he chose -driven by some incandescent yearning to empathize, familiarize, or harmonize- to join his newfound pet in consuming the #1 recommended dog food of veterinarians throughout the 1980s, Iams dried pet food. I recall that it tasted something like crushed cornbread muffins deluged with fat, salt, and preservatives, rolled into tiny cylindrical shapes. I presume that it contained a large amount of protein (to promote the growth of a pup's developing physique), but who is to say what it did for me, beyond perplexing my parents, amusing my sister, and disgusting my friends.** What this misbehavior failed to do, unequivocally, was entrance the new puppy; if anything, she detested me for infringing upon that which was intrinsically viewed as her own.

To skip ahead and answer the inevitable question: no, I don't eat dog food anymore, as alcohol is the new Iams, and the dog itself has been replaced by, well, I'll leave that to your imagination. Same snake, different skin, aren't we all?

Skipping back. No.


* Except that it's disingenuous of me to proclaim love in a conventional sense, and don't get me started on the phrase love / hate relationship, because that does little justice to my feelings toward the former pet of a latter life. A kid is, more often than not, decidedly infantile in their affections, and to posit that I had fallen prey to such delusional activities would be a dire understatement of the greatest magnitude. To better grasp my relationship with Brandy the Bitch, look up battered wife syndrome, masochism, or Stockholm Syndrome on Wikipedia in the near future. For those too lazy to do research, just recollect the trials and tribulations of Eoin Forbes' first marriage, and you'll be on the right track i.e. How many times have you been bitten / disfigured by a canine, and come back for more?

** That's why you chose me.

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